Local Lifestyle

September 2, 2021 By Phyllis Mosher

Pacific Grove Butterfly House

“Butterfly Town, USA.” Perhaps you have been there. It is Pacific Grove, California, the home of the Monarch Grove Butterfly Sanctuary, where thousands of monarch butterflies cluster together, arriving in October each year. Amazing!

Just as astonishing is the artwork on the “PG Butterfly House” on 9th Street. Hundreds of butterflies of all sizes surround the exterior of the house amidst non-stop splashes of color. Weaving throughout are endless paths of raised “braille” dots positioned on the walls so the visually impaired may be able to “see” aspects of the display. The lights come on after sunset.

“J” Jackson began painting butterflies on the house for his wife, 27 years ago, when she was first diagnosed with an eye problem, while she could see. She is now blind.

Spending about six hours most days in his garage, door open, J paints and crafts wooden butterflies and invents new bright colors as well. When we were living in Pebble Beach and our grandchildren were elementary school age, we made a small donation, which went to the local Blind Society in Pacific Grove. In so doing, each of our grandchildren has a butterfly, with his or her name on it, fastened to J’s fence. Fifteen years later, their butterflies are still there. J has plenty of fence space left for others who would like to do the same.

Whenever we return to the Monterey area, we make it a point to visit the Butterfly House. It is internationally known. Have you seen it? Stop by during the day — J will probably be performing his artistry and would love to chat with you. But don’t forget to drive by again at night—one of our favorite sights.

Image credit: @marycker, www.atlasobscura.com


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