NORTH BRANFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Flowers are the passion for Van Wilgen’s, but lately flamingos are flying out the door at their North Branford gardening center.
“It’s kind of a little bit viral for this area and we’re a little shocked,” said owner Bill Van Wilgen.
He says they saw them at a trade show and knew it could take off as a fundraiser.
“So we bought a bunch of them,” said Van Wilgen.
“My dad has been through a tremendous amount,” said Ryan, his son.
Bill has been diagnosed with cancer twice. In 2002, he fought breast cancer.
“That’s what I want everybody to understand, that it happens to males and I was fortunate to get hit in the breast and found out that I had a lump,” said Bill.
Six years later, he was hit with a leukemia diagnosis. Lately, he’s had a clean bill of health, and to show his gratitude, they’re offering up the cheery lawn ornaments for adoption.
“We never thought we’d hear the word flamingo so many times in a week,” said Ryan.
Van Wilgen’s buys them for about $4 a bird. You adopt them for $10. All of the money goes toward the Smilow Cancer Center.
“It’s been a great time,” said Ryan.
Six-hundred have already soared out, finding new homes. He hopes in addition to a donation, they could save a life.
“Be aware, that’s the whole key. Be aware,” said Bill.
They’re up for adoption until the 28th.