Winding Way Opens at Simon Meadow Pumpkin Patch

By Sue Pascoe
Editor

The Palisades-Malibu YMCA will host a fall festival this Sunday, Oct. 8, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Simon Meadow, corner of Sunset and Temescal Canyon Road.

Glass pumpkins, one-of-a-kind jewelry and vases created by artisans from the Santa Monica College Art Department will be on sale, and the Pumpkin Patch will be open, offering pumpkins, bounce houses for the kids and a hay maze.

New this year is the Winding Way, a public art installation that will allow people to travel a meditative path at Simon Meadow. The path will be open through Oct. 30, the same hours as the Pumpkin Patch: Monday through Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Cindy Simon and Dorothy Miyake, co-founders of Dollies Making a Difference, explained the genesis of the Winding Way—a path for calm contemplation in a hurried world.

Cindy Simon and Dorothy Miyake helped construct a meditative path at Simon Meadow.
Photo: Bart Bartholomew

“It evolved a few months ago from a discussion around the Dollie table where we were all talking about how everyday life seemed so rushed, to the point where we often found ourselves too busy to appreciate the wonder of this special community we live in,” Simon said. “Some members also spoke of bigger issues such as how divisive our country has become and how stressful that made us feel. We wanted to do something that would be inspiring as well as bring a little peace of mind to our lives . . . and then share that.”

After further discussion, they settled on Simon Meadow as the location and then reached out to local landscape designer Tracey Price, of American Growers, for help.

YMCA Executive Director Jim Kirtley said that Price helped with the design, secured forest-floor mulch from Foothill Soils, Inc.; secured the donation of 12 large terra-cotta pots; and provided a three-man crew to water, rake and install the path.

“We wanted Tracey to help us design a contemplative walking path through a grove of coastal live oaks,” Simon said. “We wanted to make this path colorful and inviting, so for the past month, in addition to sewing Dollies and Teddy Bears, we also wrapped branches and twigs with ribbon, yarn and fabric.”

The “talking sticks” were installed in clay pots, hung from tree limbs and sunk into the ground to frame the walking path.

As people exit the path, they can make a walking stick and either add it to the Winding Way trail or take it home.

“Dollies Making A Difference’s motto is ‘To Give Is to Receive’ and this was created as a way to give back to our community by creating an experience of peace, reflection and cheer for all to enjoy,” said Simon, who funded Simon Meadow with her husband, Bill.

The YMCA and the 30-members of the Dollies group, who helped with the setup, hope that when people leave the path, they are more at peace than when they entered.

Proceeds from the glass sale will benefit the SMC Art Department, the Palisades-Malibu YMCA and local artists. For more information, contact (310) 454-5591. To arrange a Pumpkin Patch field trip, email Oscar Rodriguez at oscarrodriguez@ymcla.org.

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