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Landscape Lighting On Hallowed Grounds
Creighton's Jesuit Garden Receives Pro Bono Lighting Installation


In honor of Father Robert Leiweke, S.J. a dear friend since 1977, Jerry McKay, owner of McKay Landscape Lighting, donated a complete landscape lighting installation at the Jesuit Gardens on Creighton University's campus. The pro bono project encompassed the design, copper bullet uplights and downlights. The crew, which included 2-3 people, went over budget but was instructed to keep working until the job was up to McKay standards.
Photo credit: McKay Landscape Lighting


McKay explained that the job became larger than anticipated due to the quantity of mature trees and statues in the gardens. Since they didn't want to limit their work to one or two trees, they stretched their resources to do the entire space justice. The installation took a week and McKay has received positive feedback from the Jesuit priests who have views of the now-illuminated garden from their rooms on campus.
Photo credit: McKay Landscape Lighting

The Jesuit Gardens on Creighton University's campus in Omaha, Neb., have been a central gathering node for students and staff for many decades. The quiet and secluded space offers the Jesuits, visitors and students a peaceful place to study, contemplate and pray.

After visiting the gardens in late 2014, Jerry McKay owner of McKay Landscape Lighting, decided to shine a light on the Jesuit Gardens' landscape.

"I donated the project because I wanted to be part of something special," said Mckay. "My family and I know so many Jesuits on a personal level and thought it would be a great way to give back."

Before work could get underway, McKay and his team had to contend with the Creighton University campus community. Priests, students and staff hold the gardens in high regard. As such, they were apprehensive about having work performed on their garden without the proper approval. Students and staff routinely inquired about the work and its impact on the space.

The lighting team installed 34 SLX Auroralight copper bullets to uplight trees and statues, and 8 Lumiere Lighting 203 downlights. The new lighting is an addition to previously existing path lights, which consist of small aluminum fixtures along the sidewalks. In total, McKay donated over $15,000 of materials and labor.

As seen in LC/DBM magazine, October 2017.

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October 20, 2019, 7:59 pm PDT

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