HARTSVILLE, S.C. (courtesy coker.edu) — Kalmia Gardens of Coker University recently celebrated the completion of its new observation platform, which was made possible thanks to generous grants from The Byerly Foundation, Carolina Pines Regional Medical Center, The Charles and Elizabeth Coker Foundation, The Charles and Joan Coker Foundation, The Kooken Family Foundation, and The Sonoco Community Foundation.
Kalmia’s new observation platform overlooks the Black Creek Bluff –– a beautiful, steep part of the gardens. The observation platform allows visitors to feel immersed in the green space without having to navigate any challenging terrain.
The observation platform is at the rear of the Hart House on the western side of the bluff. Robert Goodson Architecture and Henley’s Construction designed and installed the platform so that it blends into the natural surroundings.
“The observation platform is an outstanding addition to Kalmia Gardens and the Hartsville community,” says Mary Ridgeway, Director of Kalmia Gardens. “Because the platform is easily accessible, anyone and everyone can enjoy Kalmia Gardens. This space allows visitors to view and connect from the forest canopy to the forest floor and all niches in between.”
For more information about Kalmia Gardens of Coker University, please visit www.kalmiagardens.org.
About Kalmia Gardens of Coker University
Kalmia Gardens is the Pee Dee’s oldest and only public garden with more than 19,000 visitors every year. Established in 1933, Kalmia includes a historic house and a 35-acre public garden. The Thomas E. Hart House, built in 1820 with timber cut from the property, and surrounding gardens are on the National Register of Historic Places. The site boasts a wide array of flora, including the Gardens’ namesake—Kalmia latifolia, Mountain Laurel. Kalmia Gardens is the gateway to the 796-acre Segars-McKinnon Heritage Preserve.