Las Vegas Sun

May 19, 2019

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How we remember: Status updates on the memorials and artifacts of a tragedy

Healing Garden

Despite rumors to the contrary, the Healing Garden is here to stay. The City of Las Vegas contracted with local group Get Outdoors Nevada to tend the garden for the year. Its $50,000 budget will mainly go to general maintenance and upkeep. The group raises money to fund additional projects, which include: the planting of 10,000 daffodil bulbs in February (they should be blooming soon); a 2 p.m. April 8 butterfly release in partnership with the Nathan Adelson Hospice; a permanent Remembrance Wall to replace the temporary one built from pallets; an angel wing sculpture with 58 feathers on each wing (one for each victim); and a low perimeter fence.

The Oct. 1 collection at the Clark County Museum

On November 12, the Clark County Museum acquired approximately 20,000 artifacts left by mourners in the weeks following Oct. 1. The collection includes the 58 wooden crosses erected at the Welcome to Las Vegas sign as well as hundreds of tiny keepsakes, including rosaries, teddy bears and plastic flowers. Each item must be carefully “accessioned,” which is museum-speak for the painstaking process of cataloguing and preserving it for posterity. So far, it’s going faster than expected, thanks to a team of dedicated volunteers. Museum administrator Mark Hall-Patton wants visitors 200 years in the future to see this collection as a “social statement on how we mourn.” In the nearer future, see photos of the artifacts online and expect an exhibit of selected pieces at the year anniversary.

Vegas Cares Memorial

Singer Jewel, artist Tim Bavington and Best Agency CEO Ken Henderson are working on concepts for a memorial based on Jewel’s song “Mercy.” Expect an audio component that actually includes her music. The location, timeline and budget are still being finalized, although the latter will use the proceeds from the fundraising concert that they held at the Venetian last November, which netted almost $100,000. The project cost will only be for materials as the organizers and artists are donating their time.

This story originally appeared in the Las Vegas Weekly.