Malden’s very first Fairy House Event was celebrated last Saturday turning Pine Banks Park into an enchanted forest garden. Hundreds of residents from Malden and surrounding cities and towns attended to participate in and visit the whimsical habitats built for fairies and nature’s other friends – hobbits, elves, and trolls. Organized by Ward 5 Councillor Barbara Murphy in conjunction with Malden Reads, The Brennan Group and Jefferson Apartment Group, participants were encouraged to either pre-build their houses or make them at the event in the Builder’s Workshop to be entered into the Fairy House Walk contest.
Councilor Murphy attended dressed as Mother Nature and many children sported fairy wings, elf hats and costumes. During the afternoon event, a story hour was held by Malden Public Library Director Dora St. Martin, and a live performance of “Mikku and the Trees” by Earthworm Pie Puppet Company was enjoyed by many. Additionally, an arts and crafts table run by Cathy Bartlett, a face painting station and raffles kept everyone entertained. Ward 5 Flautist Michaela D’Onofrio performed music during the “fairy walk” and throughout the event adding to the magical atmosphere. Mayor Gary Christenson, State Representatives Steve Ultrino and Paul Brodeur, and City Councillors Craig Spadafora and Peg Crowe along with School Committee member Adam Weldai were in attendance.
The nearly 50 Fairy Houses along “Fairy Lane” included a Mayor’s Office, the Malden Public Library, several schools and many “houses” and were judged by local artist Lori Manfra and garden enthusiast Randy-Sue Abber. First Place and People’s Choice Award went to non-profit group FOOGI who created a virtual fairyland; Second Place went to local artist Paige Wallis and Third Grade Beebe School Teacher Alyssa Hall took third place for her creation.
“It was truly a family event full of imagination and creativity – a day to unplug from technology and get back to nature,” said Councillor Barbara Murphy. “The level of detail and thought that the children put into building their houses was amazing. The event was everything I hoped it would be and more.”
Top photo:Councillor Barbara Murphy as “Mother Nature” and Mayor Gary Christenson
Bottom photo:Councillor Barbara Murphy as “Mother Nature” and Mayor Gary Christenson