|TRENTON - For the seventh consecutive year, the Juvenile Justice Commission (JJC) is participating in the acclaimed Philadelphia International Flower Show, the world’s longest running and largest indoor event of its kind. The JJC submitted entries in the competitive category of window box and lamppost. The students’ displays have been judged by some of the nation’s most distinguished horticulturalists. For the first time, the show will be open for two full weekends over its nine day run, from Saturday, March 2 to Sunday March 10. This year’s theme, “Brilliant,” encourages displays that are inspired by British culture.
“The chance to participate in the Philadelphia International Flower Show is an incredible opportunity for our JJC residents,” said Kevin M. Brown, acting executive director. “With the help of their teachers, our students can apply the skills they learn in the classroom to create flower arrangements that can compete with some of the best in the world. This experience allows them to put their knowledge and creative talents to work, while providing them with life skills.”
This year, the JJC was awarded an honorable mention citation for its display. In years past, JJC students have performed well at the Philadelphia Flower Show winning many awards for individual plant entries and continually placing well in the window box and lamppost category. In 2011, the JJC was honored to take home second place for its entry in this category, losing first place by just one point.
Under the supervision of horticulture instructors, residents of the JJC spent hours in the classroom conducting research on plants, and weeks nurturing their specimens in preparation for the event. Many of the flowers used in the JJC’s entry were grown by the students in green houses as part of their ongoing horticulture curriculum. Students designed and assembled several possible entries, carefully nurturing each to see which would be selected as the eventual entry to correspond with the “Abbey Road” theme of the window box and lamppost category. The JJC’s entry is entitled, “Revolution,” and was designed to depict “vegetative insanity”. Students have the opportunity to visit the convention center to maintain their entry.
The JJC is the state agency responsible for leading the reform of the State’s juvenile justice system. Established in 1995, it serves to coordinate programs and policies affecting delinquent youth throughout the State, and offers juvenile rehabilitation and parole services. In addition to the core educational curriculum, the JJC provides extensive career and technical education to students, including horticultural instruction. The JJC greenhouses produce thousands of plants each year. The plants are used in community service projects and are made available for sale to the public.