Children's Hospital of Illinois to open rooftop garden

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PEORIA - A $1 million rooftop garden is being opened at Children's Hospital of Illinois for families of patients in pediatric critical care.

After years of planning, the ribbon cutting ceremony for the garden is scheduled for Thursday, and will officially be open next week.  Lynn and Jerry Flaherty donated $500,000 for the garden, and Caterpillar, Inc., Flaherty's former employer, matched the contribution.

Lynn and Jerry Flaherty say they wanted to create a peaceful place for families because of their experience of having three premature babies decades ago.

The garden will feature flowering shrubs, trees, and hundreds of perennial flowers.  Three metal canopies, each weighing about 5,000 pounds, have been installed, and the garden will also have several wooden walkways that lead to a fountain and sitting areas.

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