By Darcy Edmunds, Feet First
If you’ve ever wanted to explore Kubota Garden through the eyes of an artist, here is your chance! Mary Magenta, a Feet First Neighborhood Walking Ambassador as well as a volunteer, docent, and Artist in Residence at Kubota Garden, has been leading walks through this wonderful city park in the Rainier Beach neighborhood since late spring. Her knowledge of the Garden’s history and Japanese garden culture combined with her skill and experience as an artist has provided a unique perspective of the park to the many local residents who have joined her over the past few months.
Last month, Mary led a walk to celebrate the Blue Moon. The walk was very well attended, with twenty-five people howling in the rarefied lunar light. The howling should come as no surprise to those acquainted with Mary’s contagious enthusiasm. “I love being with people,” Mary says, “and being a Feet First Neighborhood Walking Ambassador in my favorite park allows me to meet and interact with fabulous folks from all over–and to share my deep appreciation for the sanctuary that is Kubota Garden.”
While Mary has been visiting Seattle to paint for years, she decided relocate here permanently earlier this year. Mary recently stated that one of the main reasons she chose to move to Seattle is “because public transit works so well here, because bikes are a very welcomed form of transportation, and because I don’t want to drive anymore!”
In addition to leading walks in Kubota Garden this summer, Mary has also been directing Art Adventures (http://www.marymagenta.com/pages/welcome), a 7 week art workshop for grandparents and their grandchilden. Art Adventures has provided a venue for multi-generational discussion about art and nature while creating wonderful works of art together. Through generous donations, Mary was able to provide this workshop free to all participants. Visitors at the Rainier Beach Art Walk will be able to view (and purchase) some of the art from this workshop at the Rainier Beach Medical and Dental Clinic (9245 Rainier Avenue South).
Want to join Mary on her next walk through Kubota Garden?
The blue moon has passed, but the walks continue, starting Tuesday, September 25th from 6:00 pm until 7:30 pm, and again in October. Participants of all ages and abilities are welcome. Meet up at the main entrance to Kubota Garden (9817 55th Avenue South) near the intersection of Renton Avenue South and 55th Avenue South. Metro Route 106 serves this location. We’ll see you there!
Feet First (www.feetfirst.org) works to ensure all communities across Washington state are walkable. Neighborhood Walking Ambassadors (http://feetfirst.org/act/ambassadors) are Feet First volunteers who help promote safer, more walkable communities by leading neighborhood walks inviting groups to connect with their surroundings and share knowledge while improving personal and environmental health.