Connell brings festive flair to Corner Park

Published 10:50 am Tuesday, April 4, 2023

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By JOYANNA LOVE |Managing Editor

Clanton’s Corner Park has been the site of more events in recent years after some renovations.

Even when a band is not performing on the stage, there is still a lot to enjoy in seasonal holiday displays, thanks to the creative work of Teresa Connell.

For Easter this year, Connell went with a brightly colored flower and bunny theme. Each of oversized flowers in the display was created by Connell. She said she found a tutorial on YouTube for making the flowers.

“It is foam sheets, and you actually take and cut out the pattern, and you use a heat gun and shape them the way that you want to shape them,” Connell said. “… Everything I do in the Corner Park has to be weather resistant, so I have to really, really concentrate on types of material that is weather proof in order for them to withstand the elements.”

She wanted the Easter display to be full of color.

“I want it to be a photo opportunity,” Connell said.

The Easter Bunny is expected to make an appearance at some point this week. Watch the City of Clanton Facebook page for details.

The idea to have a seasonal display started Christmas 2020, so Connell has been dreaming up the displays for the past two and a half years. “I just love the impact it does for the city of Clanton,” Connell said. “People enjoy it. It is a photo opportunity.”

Finding a new idea for each holiday, so it looks different from the previous year, can be a challenge.

Connell said she finds inspiration on Pinterest and looking at what other cities are doing. Her creative background doing stage decorations, decorating cakes, sewing and crafts gives her skills to work with in making each display.

“I have always been a crafty person, and now, I got the opportunity to do it for the city, and so I really, really enjoy it,” Connell said.

She said response has been positive with community members making comments on how good it looks.

“Christmas is my favorite,” Connell said. “Then, I would say Easter is my second favorite.”

Connell said she is already planning the display to celebrate July 4.

Corner Park is across from where Connell works at the Chilton County Courthouse. She said she usually takes a week off from her job in order to get a new display up at the park.

“I do have some friends that will come and help me,” Connell said. “Karen Cox is a very committed friend of mine. She is retired, so anytime I need help she will come and help me.”

For Christmas, several volunteers and city employees help get Corner Park decorated.