Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

Local News

April 3, 2013

Symbol of peace blooms again at Children's Museum



The original tree was blown down by high winds in a storm in August 2010. The fallen tree was estimated to weigh 60,000 pounds. Thanks to Dow AgroSciences, The Children's Museum was able to provide essential care and feeding for several of the saplings.

"Protecting and nurturing plant development is fundamental to our mission," said Gordon Slack, Dow AgroSciences global leader of finance and public affairs. "We are so thankful to have had the opportunity to lend our expertise and support to this meaningful program."

One sapling will be planted in The Children's Museum's Anne Frank Peace Park, donated by Indianapolis philanthropists Gerald and Dorit Paul.

"Being refugees ourselves and seeing Anne's picture reminds me of what I looked like as a girl and what we went through," said Dorit Paul. "There was also a big allee by the river where I grew up in Germany lined with chestnut trees and we all collected the nuts. So, the chestnut tree and Anne Frank struck a strong emotional chord with me."

The Children's Museum features an exhibit called The Power of Children, in which Anne is honored along with two other children who showed unique strength while facing unimaginable challenges. The stories of Anne Frank, Ruby Bridges (first black child to integrate a white elementary school in the segregated South), and Ryan White (the Indiana teenager barred from school for being infected with pediatric H.I.V.) exemplify how every individual can make a powerful difference in the world. The exhibit features live theater performances that bring the stories of those youth to life and includes artifacts depicting each of their experiences.

The horse chestnut tree was the only way Anne Frank could connect with nature during the two years her family hid from the Nazis during the German occupation of the Netherlands. As a Jewish teenager, she wrote about the tree's beauty several times.

In addition to the tree commemoration ceremony that is open to the public, there will also be performances of Anne's story in The Power of Children gallery and hands-on activities in the biotechnology lab at designated times throughout the day. The Children's Museum is at 3000 N. Meridian St. Call 334-3322 or visit the website ChildrensMuseum.org for more information.

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