A fresh bag of dirt, a flat of purple petunias and several sets of hands helped transform the porch of the Daily Living Center in Bethany into a spring garden.
More than 5,000 students, faculty and staff from the University of Oklahoma helped participate in the Big Event on Saturday by spending the day performing jobs and working on projects at 150 community organizations in Norman and in the Oklahoma City metro area.
Francis Smith, 83, was working alongside volunteer Grant Hamlin planting flowers. Hamlin, a freshman at Oklahoma Christian School, also spent the day volunteering for the Big Event.
Big Event volunteers work in groups of their own choosing or team up with other individual volunteers. Many clubs, fraternities, sororities and church groups make up the Big Event teams.
Smith, who likes to spend time talking with other seniors at the Daily Living Center, said it had been many years since she had planted anything, but added that when she was younger she had quite the green thumb.
“We grew anything you could put into the ground,” Smith said. “Flowers, onions, potatoes; mostly things you could eat. It is nice to have people to garden with again.”