Sunday, March 22, 2009

Stuff to do

My friend Kristin sent me an email reminding me that Amir's Garden , located in Griffith Park, is in full bloom. Kristin is a steward and volunteer at the garden. If you aren't familiar with Amir's Garden, here's a little background history of this amazing testament to volunteerism and patriotic pride:

Amir Dialameh worked a steep hill in Griffith Park for than three decades with a pick and shovel and turned a scorched, barren landscape into a lush, shaded grove that is visited daily by a steady stream of hikers and horseback riders.

For thirty-two years, Dialameh worked in the garden most days of the week, hiking up a service road to the rugged Mineral Wells location. Over the years, he planted pine and jacaranda trees along with rose bushes, geraniums, oleander, and yucca that grew into the beautiful oasis it is today.

"…what you need first and foremost here is shade," Dialameh explained in 1989. "That's why I planted trees like the jacaranda. In ten years, this place will be covered with their branches."

His words were prophetic. Today Amir's Garden is nearly five-acres of shady rest stop for Griffith Park's hikers and equestrians.

Dialameh first came to appreciate nature as a child during hiking trips in the Alborz Mountains of his native Iran. As his love of hiking and nature developed, so did his affinity for the United States of America.

"I was intrigued by the volunteerism that built this country... people doing things instead of relying on the government." In 1963 while visiting his brother in Pittsburgh, Dialameh made the ultimate decision to immigrate and moved to the Los Angeles area.

Please visit the Amir's Garden website for more images and information on this wonderful gift to the city. Take your kids! What a wonderful opportunity to show our children by the example of Mr. Dalameh how one person CAN make a difference in his or her community.

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