About 9,000 poppies are cascading down from the bell tower at St. Luke’s Anglican Church in remembrance of Canada’s fallen soldiers.
The red knitted or crocheted poppies, about 10 cm in diametre, are attached to netting to create a monumental and poignant salute to those who have served.
Parishioners started the project early this year after receiving the support of the national office of the Royal Canadian Legion, and reached out to friends and acquaintances to help make poppies.
“We have people from northern Alberta, Calgary, surrounding areas, who all caught on through the parishioners,” said one of the project organizers Debb Mann.
“Some people made 100, and some only did five, so we have lots of different craftspeople.”
Mann said the poppies are made from yarn because wool would shrink and bleed if it got wet. Once people brought in their handmade poppies, parishioners attached them to two layers of netting for extra support. The netting was hung last weekend from north and west sides of the church’s bell tower.
“They withstood the first snow storm, which really surprised me,” Mann said.
Spearheaded by two parishioners, the eye-catching display is intended to draw attention to efforts to support Canada’s veterans.
Poppies also decorate plaques dedicated to veterans inside the church.
Mann said people who don’t drive south through the downtown may not realize the church is decorated in the red flowers. But there is still time to see the display which must come down after Remembrance Day.
Several bins will be used to store all the poppies.
“It was a lot of hard work by parishioners, men and women. It was really a community effort.”
St. Luke’s Anglican Church is located at 4929 54th St.