I apologize for the abridged version of our recent history. It is not a too distant memory for many of us. It would have taken the entire eNews to include it all, but you can read all about it on our website or in print in your directories. I have highlighted our goals and notable accomplishments. It is impressive, and I am proud of our Club yesterday and today!

2011 The Garden Club of Denver held its first retreat in September. Topics discussed included our ongoing relationships with GCA and DBG, membership participation, programs and workshops, new member cultivation, and the length and timing of meetings.
The evolution of our website continued, and Helen Boyd did a masterful job. The Three Trees and a River Committee propagated cottonwoods at Chatfield with the Cottonwood Institute and West Denver Prep Charter School students. With the generous underwriting of GCD member Bea Taplin and Denver Botanic Gardens, the Club hosted a seated luncheon for 250 in Mitchell Hall to kick off the Power of Flowers Show in June. It featured Nancy Clarke, former White House floral arranger through six presidencies. For the entire previous year, under the leadership of Lindsay Dodge and Bonnie Grenney, the membership worked tirelessly to produce the stunning flower show that followed. Twelve GCA Special Awards were given, and eight judges' Commendations. A Three Trees and a River conservation exhibit was awarded both the Ann Lyons Crammond and Marion Thompson Fuller Brown Conservation Awards.

2012 We brought in two GCA speakers – Jane Kilduff on botanical jewelry and Gay Estes, helping to lead the charge in GCA for garden and landscape photography. Local speakers included Clifford Spencer from Mesa Verde, Craig Miller from Parker Water, and Dyana Furmansky on Rosalie Edge, an early conservationist. The Garden Club’s involvement with Denver Botanic gardens is ongoing. We now have three members and one apprentice member serving on the board as trustees. Work in the Lainie Jackson Cutting Garden is currently scheduled weekly, multiple flower arrangements are made for the Waring House and Lobby Court during the growing season, the holiday dried arrangements in the Romantic Garden were reinstated this year, and the Garden Club of Denver once again managed the entire process of floral design for the Fete de Fleurs.
The Three Trees and a River Centennial Project is winding down this year. The final piece will be an October fundraiser at the Chatfield barn to help raise money for the new native garden at the Chatfield Visitors Center. There will be an Oklahoma-style picnic basket silent auction and live music.

2013 With an underlying theme of Living the Garden Life, the year began with hosting the Broadmoor Garden Club at St. Anne School. In September, an In-Club Flower Show titled "The Bodacious Garden" sported 75 entries competing for various GCD trophies. For the first time, there were multiple winners in several classes. Special guest Marilyn Brumder, Zone XII GCA Director, joined us for this Fall kick-off. Sissy Gibson and Wendy White attended the Shirley Meneice Workshop in Austin, Texas, in October. Our November program featured Dr. Eric Haskell, who delivered a lively presentation on 'Vaux le Vicomte" to the Denver community at DBG. This effort directly resulted from personal contributions to the Speaker’s Challenge Grant, initiated by Immediate Past President Mary Fowler the summer before. The calendar year was a festive Reindeer workshop and breakfast meeting to ring in the holidays.

Of particular note was the panel discussion held at History Colorado in February on the controversial topic of Fracking. Carol Griesemer and Cindy Scott represented GCD at the 2013 Conservation/NAL meeting in Washington DC. In April, renowned local photographer John Fielder held a melodic, pictorial presentation. May found us delving into green buildings with a lecture and guided tour of Kent Denver’s new Dining Hall.
In addition to improving our minds, we spent lots of time improving our community, DBG specifically. At least 160 hours were spent in Lainie’s Cutting Garden and some 105 hours were logged doing floral arrangements, plus another 40 hours for the Blossoms of Light outdoor holiday arrangements.

We retired our GCD Centennial Tree Project—Three Trees & A River with a Fall supper-basket fling at Chatfield Barn, raising $5000 for a donation to DBG for the Lauren Springer garden at the Visitor entrance. On a national level, Angela Overy designed an extraordinary watercolor map for the GCA Horticulture Committee, showcasing all 23,500 trees planted by GCA’s 200 member clubs in honor of GCA’s Centennial. Finally, in technology, we accomplished significant enhancements to the GCD website and created a monthly E-Newsletter for our Garden Club of Denver members.

2014 Continuing our theme of “Living the Garden Life,” the year was full of garden and garden-like experiences. We began with a commitment to try out the “new” GCA flower show template, where each division is offered solely by itself as a “show.” In June, we featured Floral Design; in September, we presented Hort, and in November, we showcased Photography. Our programs were varied and balanced between interesting conservation, photography, floral design, and Hort topics. Some highlights included Dr. Patty Limerick from the American Center for the West, who spoke on “The City, The West & Water in Denver,” Lynn Hoffman-Brouse, who spoke on the “How To’s of Flower Photography,” A local panel who addressed “Gardening for Children—The Schools, Non-profits & Foundations which support them,” “Backyard Chicken Keeping” with Sundari Kraft; "Artistic Floral Headpieces," created by Arthur Williams of Babylon Floral; "All About Roses" by Matt Douglas from High Country Roses, and “Spirituality in the Garden” with Dr. Edward Antonio, from the Iliff School of Theology. Barb Hammond represented us at the 2013 Fall Shirley Meneice conference, held in Washington D.C., while Bar Chadwick and Ann Crammond traveled to Washington to represent us at the 2014 NAL Meeting. On a national level, Angela Overy designed an artistic rendering of the 20 Freeman Medal Winners to date in honor of the 20th Anniversary of this award. GCA printed special note cards featuring her bouquet. The research was begun on a possible Centennial Project that might commemorate GCD’s 100th Birthday in 2016. The two overarching themes being considered are Sustainable Urban Agriculture and Colorado’s National Parks & Monuments.

The Bi-Annual Zone XII Meeting was held in Pasadena, CA, with Janet ManningBonnie Grenney, and Lindsay Dodge. BJ Dyer received the distinguished Mary Drake Freer Award for his “outstanding achievement and contributions in flower arranging.” Muffie Dahlberg and Janet Manning represented our Club at the GCA Annual Meeting in New Orleans. Lindsay Dodge was asked to serve as the 2014-2016 Zone XII Admissions Rep.
Finally, our Club enjoyed many celebrations this year. Bonnie Grenney received her official GCA Judgeship in Floral Design; Missy Eliot was appointed GCA Flower Show Treasurer; The DBG Ellipse Garden was dedicated to Nancy Schotters. GCD honored Bea Taplin on the occasion of her 90th Birthday!