Hartford Gardens ? Janet Hartford

Today you cleared snow from your neighbour?s driveway. You have volunteered your time and energy to help someone else. Your neighbour says, ?Here is something for your trouble.? It is an amount of money. My response is always, ?You can repay me by helping someone else out when you are able.?

The definition of a volunteer is a person who voluntarily offers himself or herself for a service or undertaking and does this willingly and without pay. Many persons new to our community are perhaps familiar with the name ?Janet.? Most of us who have been around for a few years are well aware that you are talking about Janet Hartford who still enjoys participating in the community. She has always spent much time volunteering and if someone were to pay her for it she would be a billionaire.

The Garden Club named the garden in the downtown area in front of the caboose Hartford Gardens in honour of Janet Hartford who was one of the founding members of the Garden Club in 2000 and who embodies the meaning of community in all she has done and does in all the years of Tumbler Ridge?s existence.

She grew up in Beaverlodge. She and her husband George taught in Dawson Creek and when Tumbler Ridge became a town she moved with George to Tumbler Ridge.

In 1983.in the early years of Tumbler Ridge Janet was the only one with a garden. She taught out of an ATCO trailer before the school was built. Janet lived in a trailer on Aspen. The teachers.worked shifts but the first semester she came to Tumbler Ridge she was the sixth teacher and there were only five rooms so she pleasantly did not have to teach for a month.

Janet was a member of the Regional Hospital Board and a member of the Peace Liard Community Health Services Society. She sat on the Tumbler Ridge Library Board, was involved with the community Arts Council and received an Arts Council Award. Organizing the Tumbler Ridge Art Gallery, the TRISPS Craft Fair in November and Ten Thousand Village Craft Sale in November, you will find her attending meetings including Happy Hookers when she feels able. She also produced the Millennium Daybook Calendar. She was also a member of the Tumbler Ridge Choral Society.

A driving force in the fundraising team which raised $40,000 towards a swimming pool in Tumbler Ridge she was honoured with a plaque at the swimming pool.

There is the Tumbler Ridge Umbrella Committee, a group of community organizations representing all social organizations in the municipality and Janet was the representative for 49 Forever. These are folks of any age but mainly over 49 that gather for food, fun and entertainment.

Everyone looked forward to her weekly write-ups in the newspaper which she did until very recently.

Did you know 60 civil marriages have been performed in the community from April 1993 to 2000 by Janet as a Marriage Commissioner?

She canvassed for many causes including the Cancer Society and the Heart and Stroke Foundation.?

Dr. Charles Helm wrote about Janet in his book, ?Tumbler Ridge, Enjoying its History, Trails and Wilderness? and describes Janet when she was a teen ascending the cliff beside Kinuseo Falls, Also, on pages 132 and 133 you can read about ?The Early Days in Tumbler Ridge by George and Janet Hartford.?

Janet received the Queen?s Jubilee Award Medal in 2000 for volunteer efforts and work in building Canada and Canadian communities.

Janet truly fulfills the meaning of her name, ?God?s gracious gift.? The Garden Club was pleased to name our garden Hartford Gardens and honour Janet.