President’s Report (June 2017)

IMG_0122-22016-2017 was another exciting year for GGC.  I can think of many memorable activities and programs organized by our fabulous committee chairs, and I thought I would highlight a few.

Our Program team (Anne Green, Vicky Skouras, and Wendy Henderson) provided a wonderful line up of entertaining and educational speakers.  Among our favorites were Stephen Byrns who talked about the history of Untermeyer Gardens in Yonkers, NY, floral designer Kyle Riccoboni who created three stunning flower arrangements and Margaret Roche who spoke about how to create a 365-Day Garden.

We had two fabulous in-house Floral Design sweepstakes: “Pretty in Pink,” based on Lily Pulitzer design, and “Best Picture,” with categories based on the movies La La Land, Gone with the Wind, and The Wizard of Oz.  Fun prizes were awarded to the winners by co-chairs Betsy Vitton and Ashley Allan.

Our Photography chairs (Virginia Marzonie and Grace Schoelkopf) arranged two excellent workshops at the Apple Store to learn how best to take photos on an iPhone, including how to light, focus, zoom, and edit our work.

Our Horticulture chairs (Anne Getz and Libby Welch) organized two fun workshops: a cement trough workshop led by Allison Bourke and a fall planting of daffodil and tulip bulbs hosted by Susan Schieffelin.  

Conservation (Kim Gregory and Polly Hanson) continued their informative Pollinator Potluck series for a second year. Highlights included presentations on bird friendly landscapes and water conservation during a time of drought.  They also showed the movie Bag It (Is Your Life Too Plastic?). The movie viewing led to a grass roots movement to try to ban thin, disposable plastic bags at supermarkets in Greenwich.

In October, members came out in record numbers to participate in a tri-club event with Hortulus and Green Fingers where we planted 10,000 crocus bulbs on Monument Hill.  Coordinated by Civic (Meline Dickson) and with the assistance of a five town employees, this project was accomplished in record time. This spring, the town enjoyed a wonderful display of beautiful yellow, white, and purple flowers!

Education Outreach (Kathy Heidt, Beth Taylor, and Alexandra Codraro) arranged four delightful days where members worked either with children in the Head Start program at Armstrong Court or with seniors at River House.  Continuing again this summer (led by Urling Searle) our kids in the Garden program will bring the children at Armstrong Court outside to the community garden to plant vegetables, to weed and water and to learn about pollinators.

Excursions/Visiting Gardens (Kirsten Galef and Holli Cutting) organized fabulous tours to five nearby properties: Untermeyer Park and Gardens, Stone Barns, The Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, Seven Bridges Foundation, and Kykuit.  Each tour was well attended and so much fun. To finish the year, “pop-up tours” were offered to the gardens of GGC members Ginny Parker and Margaret Bragg.  

Other committee chairs were also quite busy.  Membership (Karen Marache) and New Members (Crissy Robinson and Katie Baccile) welcomed four new members, Club History ( Patricia Lovejoy and Hopie Lewis) created a survey to collect fun facts from former presidents, Policy (Phyllis Potter) worked to update the bylaws, and our Corresponding Secretary ( Sharon Kinney) gathered information from Membership, Policy, and Club History to keep our handbook current.  Sally Madden also as member at large lent her sage advice to many of the committees named above.

GCA Club Liaison (Lindy Wells) kept us up to date on the many scholarship opportunities available through GCA and Federated, and she shared news of interesting articles, books, and lectures of interest to club members.

Garden History and Design (Jane Dunn with help from Lisa Hurst) had a banner year with the acceptance of Margaret Bragg’s garden, “An Artists Garden,” into the archives of the Smithsonian.  This was GGC’s first Smithsonian recognition and big news!

Our Medals and Awards committee (Leslie Lee) orchestrated a fabulous awards ceremony at the Annual Meeting. Longtime member Molly Cook was honored with a special appreciation award in recognition of her upcoming 100th birthday in August.

Finally, our wonderful Recording Secretary (Lisa Hurst) kept us in the know by posting Clippings, monthly meeting minutes, and timely news on the GGC website, while our Treasurer extraordinaire (Chris Nichols) gave generously of her time, keeping us on budget and preparing us for 2017-2018.  

Libby King