Downtown Flower Baskets Go Up Just in Time for UM Commencement & Mother’s Day

Downtown Flower Baskets Go Up Just in Time for UM Commencement & Mother’s Day


The Downtown Missoula Partnership staff will hang 110 flower baskets in Downtown Missoula on Wednesday, May 8, just in time to welcome thousands of visitors for UM Commencement, slated for Saturday, May 11, and Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 12.

Funded by the Missoula Downtown Association, the Downtown Flower Baskets have been an important part of Downtown programming since 1981. The baskets are produced locally by Pink Grizzly, and they are cared for every day by Downtown Missoula Partnership staff. The baskets are typically up from UM Commencement May to UM Homecoming in October; they are watered every day and sometimes watered twice a day when the temperatures rise to 80 degrees or higher.

“The Missoula Downtown Association has been taking care of the Downtown flower baskets for over 40 years, and the flower baskets are just one of the many things the MDA does to make Downtown attractive and vibrant for everyone” said Jed Liston, President of the MDA Board of Directors and outreach coordinator for Community Medical Center’s Inpatient Rehabilitation Center.

Many of the flowers are inserted into the black metal baskets, created by local artist Russell Smith in 1981 and 1985. Smith was an extraordinary creative artist from Missoula who worked in all modes and lived a full life as an artist. He passed away in early 2020 after retiring to his hometown a few years earlier.

Pink Grizzly will deliver the 110 flower baskets to the Central Park Garage (128 W. Main) early Wednesday morning, then six DMP employees will hang the baskets on the street lights throughout the Downtown District.

For more information on the Downtown Flower Baskets, reach out to the Downtown Missoula Partnership via email ([email protected]) or phone (406-543-4238).

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