A beautified Centennial School in Streator awaits students after volunteer efforts

Centennial alumna donates landscape design to replace old bushes with colorful flowers

Volunteers review the landscaping plan Friday, Aug. 12, 2022, created by Nora Sedlock for the front of Centennial School in Streator.

Nora Sedlock remembers the bushes in front of Centennial School in Streator when she attended there her second through fifth grade years.

Those vivid memories are a reason why she volunteered to create a landscaping design to succeed the decades-old bushes.

Streator Elementary Board Member Barbara Ehling helps move a plant Friday, Aug. 12, 2022, at Centennial School in Streator.

New Principal Susie Thrush said the stumps of the bushes had to be grinded out and Three Trees in Streator handled the job. When Bill Sedlock of Three Trees was summoned for another project, he took no money for it and told Thrush his daughter Nora would love to design the landscaping in front of the school.

Again, this came at no cost.

“I was happy to beautify the school, because this is where I went,” said Nora Sedlock, also assisted by her sister Cenaida.

Volunteer Jim Pellino moves one of the donated stones Friday, Aug. 12, 2022, at Centennial School in Streator.

She said she selected colorful flowers to bloom in the spring and fall. The idea is the elementary students can interact with them and learn their colors, and shapes. Some of the new plants include callicarpa pearl glam, sambucus black lace, cotinus black winecraft, Karl Foerster grass, birchleaf spiraea, echinacea pow wow wild berry, echinacea sombrero salsa red, echinacea sombrero lemon yellow, sedum, red October big bluestem grass, heuchera black pearl, baptisia decadence lemon meringue and blue fescue.

Additionally, stones were donated by Debbie and Kevin Cassady and a large rock is going to be engraved at Schultz Monument with the notation “landscape designed by Nora Sedlock, former student of Centennial School” in thanks of her contribution, Thursh said.

(Front row, left to right) Centennial Principal Susie Thrush, landscape designer Nora Sedlock, Streator Elementary Board Member Barbara Ehling, (back row, left to right) Jim Thrush, Teresa James, Jim Pellino and Terri Olbrot volunteered Friday, Aug. 12, 2022, to install landscaping in front of Centennial School in Streator.

Volunteers helped install the new flowers Friday afternoon at the school. A second phase of improvements also is planned, Nora Sedlock said. The new landscaping also will tie into the school’s memorial garden for Dalton Mesarchik.

“I can’t thank everyone enough,” said Barbara Ehling, a Streator Elementary Board member. “We’re looking forward to the start of the school year with everyone coming back to a beautified Centennial School.”

The first day of school is Wednesday, Aug. 17, for Streator Elementary students.

Newly-planted flowers spruce up the front of Centennial School in Streator.