Las Vegas Community Healing Gardens
Backstory and Context
Route 91 Harvest Festival is a three-day country music festival that is held annually in Paradise, Nevada in the Las Vegas Village lot on the Las Vegas Boulevard. The festival is known for hosting/headlining popular musical country artist.
On the night of October 1st, 2017, Between 10:05-10:15, Stephen Paddock, fired more than 1,100 rounds of ammunition from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel on a crowd at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival on the Las Vegas Strip, killing 58 people (before killing himself) and injuring 851 (422 by gunfire). This incident is the deadliest mass shooting committed by a single individual in U.S history. (En.wikipedia.org, 2019)
In the time of tribulation caused by Paddock, there was an immediate response. Within a couple of days, the community, with help from the Get Outdoors Nevada and the LV Community Healing Garden Community created a place of peace (Woods, 2017). With lots of ideas thrown everywhere, nothing was set in stone until Jay Pleggenkuhle, owner of the Stonerose Landscape called the EON office and said, “A garden is a source of life... it brings people peace” from there, a permanent healing garden memorial was in the making. Pleggenkuhle sketched a garden on a napkin and before noon, donations started to pour in. More than a thousand people offered time, money and materials for this project to be built as soon as possible. Pleggenkuhle mentioned that the main intentions in doing the garden project wasn’t necessarily the result but the process of bring the community together in a time of hurt and heartache to create joy and beauty (Crosby, 2018)
Although the Healing Gardens is a place of peace and love, it is a reminder of the tragic event and gun violence. This garden is a meaning of remembering the ones that were lost as well as the horrible gun laws we have as a nation.
Crosby, Rachel. “Remembrance Wall Dedicated at Las Vegas Community Healing Garden.” Journal. Las Vegas Journal, October 2, 2018. https://www.reviewjournal.com/crime/shootings/remembrance-wall-dedicated-at-las-vegas-community-healing-garden/.
HISTORY. (2018). Gunman opens fire on Las Vegas concert crowd, wounding hundreds and killing 58. [online] Available at: https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/2017-las-vegas-shooting [Accessed 22 Oct. 2019].
En.wikipedia.org. (2019). Stephen Paddock. [online] Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Paddock [Accessed 24 Oct. 2019].
Woods, Alden. “Volunteers Create Healing Garden Just Days after Las Vegas Shooting.” USA Today. Gannett Satellite Information Network, October 6, 2017. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/10/05/volunteers-create-healing-garden-just-days-after-las-vegas-shooting/738323001/.