MARQUETTE, Mich. (WJMN) – Bothwell Middle School students helped beautify south Marquette on Friday.

120 seventh grade students planted flowers along US-41 and South Front Street as part of Marquette Beautification and Restoration Committee’s 35th annual Petunia Pandemonium.
Students were given gloves, garden trowels, and a lesson on how to properly plant the flowers in the soil. This is the first Petunia Pandemonium in three years due to the COVID-19 pandemic and road construction. Last year’s road construction along US-41 resulted in the committee’s irrigation system to be torn out of the ground. With fundraising, the irrigation system has since been replaced and ready to water the flowers throughout the summer.

“When 120 seventh graders come down to help plant it’s a little chaotic for a while but once they sort of settle in to where they’re planting, they just got at it with lots of enthusiasm and they’re having a great time,” said Petunia Pandemonium Chairperson Barb Kelly. “They’re doing a wonderful service for the community, so I think they learned a lot of community pride while they’re at it, and they have fun with their friends and it’s almost the end of the school year, so spirits are high.”

Bothwell student Wyatt McElroy says he’s happy to help beautify Marquette. He says he’s never planted flowers before but has experience gardening with his family.

“It feels really good because we get to be a part of this opportunity […] I have planted. My family actually has a garden, and we haven’t planted anything this year, but we did a couple years ago,” said McElroy.

Planting continues Saturday, June 3 for Petunia Pandemonium. The public is invited to meet at McCabe’s Quality Flooring in Marquette at 9:30 a.m. for assignment of area to plant. You’re encouraged to bring your own gloves and trowel. Safety vests will be provided. A picnic with treats and food will be provided immediately after planting.

For more information on Marquette Beautification and Restoration Committee, click here.