Historical past takes root as Glenwood Springs Garden Club celebrates 91st anniversary


Glenwood Springs Garden Club member Ann English peruses the group’s reminiscence guide of prior information protection. Peter Baumann/Post Independent
Glenwood Springs Garden Club

About 90 years in the past — properly, 91 to be precise — a gaggle of 10 Glenwood Springs ladies rallied along with a ardour for crops, timber, birds and neighborhood.

They fashioned the Glenwood Springs Garden Club and commenced sowing seeds all through the world — a few of which sprouted into the timber that now shade Grand Avenue. And others, which proceed to domesticate a vibrant neighborhood of gardeners, inexperienced thumbs and greenskeepers.

“We weren’t able to celebrate our 90th anniversary last year,” stated Ann English, a retired college instructor and former Garden Club president. “So this year we’ve gone all out with the 90-plus-one celebration.” 

On June 9, membership members adorned costumes from the Nineteen Thirties and hosted a proper backyard tea celebration, saluting the achievements of these first 10 gardeners and the various who’ve since joined the membership’s ranks. 

While the tea was extra for members than most people, English stated the membership is internet hosting an occasion Saturday open to the entire neighborhood. 

In addition to this weekend’s backyard tour, the Glenwood Springs Garden Club lately celebrated 90 years of steady neighborhood involvement with a proper tea celebration on June 9 on the residence of Mary Anne Taylor and arranged by Eva Fitzwater. Founded in 1931 by 10 ladies, the Garden Club is the longest lively membership in Glenwood. The membership now’s round 60.  Photo courtesy of Deb Martin


The Welcome To Our Gardens Tour is a chance to step into membership members’ backyards and discover the verdant landscapes members toiled in all spring. 

“The reason we call it Welcome To Our Gardens is it’s truly an opportunity to explore,” English defined. “It’s not a guided tour. It’s a day to browse at your leisure.” 

Each residence on the tour will probably be marked with an eclectically painted bicycle, sporting a handlebar basket stuffed with flowers, she stated. This 12 months’s gardens tour is devoted to Howard Raley, a gardener extraordinaire whose experience in xeriscaping is unparalleled, English added. 

Officially, the Garden Club’s mission is to “stimulate the knowledge and love of gardening, to aid in the protection of mature trees, plants and birds and to encourage civic planting,” stated Katie Rubel, one other of the membership’s former presidents. 

Informally, nevertheless, it’s a gaggle of people that share a typical curiosity and like to speak about it, Rubel added. 

“I grow vegetables, and when I retired, I had a neighbor who encouraged me to join the club,” Rubel remembered. “I said, ‘I grow vegetables. I don’t know anything about flowers.’ My neighbor said, ‘You’ll learn.’ And, I did.”

Rubel’s cheeks flushed as she quietly chuckled on the reminiscence Wednesday. Beside her, Garden Club Secretary Judy O’Donnell sipped iced tea and shielded her eyes from the noon solar. 

Potted purple petunias danced in a lightweight breeze alongside O’Donnell’s patio as English joined the 2 with a scrapbook stuffed with articles in regards to the membership. 

“We have pieces written as far back as 1931,” English boasted. “Though the originals of those articles are kept at the Glenwood Springs Historical Society’s Frontier Museum.”  

The museum and the membership share a powerful bond. O’Donnell nurtures a small backyard in entrance of the museum, and English stated the membership put in an herb backyard within the rear, which is now tended by different gardeners. 

“That happens a lot,” she defined. “We establish gardens across the city, and we take care of them for a time, but usually, someone else steps up to take over, and we move on to the next garden.” 

The membership established a therapeutic backyard at Valley View Hospital, although it has since been eliminated throughout a renovation. They established the Glenwood Springs Recreation Center’s Community Garden, the Frontier Museum gardens and a backyard on the Historic Cardiff Schoolhouse, English stated. 

Ages in the past, the membership planted a tree on Grand Avenue, which is now used as the town’s Christmas tree, she added. In 2018, the membership raised $2,000 for a Glenwood Springs Elementary School greenhouse mission. And in 2006, the membership gained massive with their Strawberry Days float “Streakin’ Through the Garden.” 

“The girls wore bathing suits under these big rain coats during the parade,” English stated, thumbing by pictures within the membership’s scrapbook. “It was quite the affair. They won the Grand Marshall prize.” 

Through their efforts, the membership helped beautify the town, however greater than vegetation, it gave individuals a spot to take root. 

“Violet Mooney is one of our oldest members, now in her 90s, and she is our resident philosopher,” English stated, recounting Mooney’s tendency to quote poems and verses from reminiscence at membership conferences. 

Another long-serving member, 91-year Grace Schick, advised English she loves being part of the membership, as a result of it’s extra than simply chit chat, it’s a chance to study one thing new at each assembly.

“Can you imagine that?” English requested. “Looking forward to learning something new even after 90 years on this earth. That is amazing and inspiring.” 

Joining the membership, rising for neighborhood and participating within the metropolis’s historical past can grant members a way of place and belonging, she stated. 

“What we do might be behind the scenes,” English stated. “But it contributes to the ambiance of the city and the community as a whole.” 

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