Letter from the President

Patricia Frobes, President, Friends of Peninsula Park Rose GardenDecember 2017

Dear Friends,

After a stunning summer of blooms the Garden is now prepared for winter. We had a beautiful season and enjoyed a productive year, maintaining a sharp focus on volunteers, community engagement, enhancement and preservation. Thank you for your engagement and commitment to the Garden throughout the year. I hope you enjoy reading the following highlights of 2017 as much as I enjoyed describing them!

With thanks and all good wishes for 2018,

Patricia Frobes, President

Volunteers

Our volunteer team continues to grow. The dedication and enthusiasm of our team are reflected in the 2,000+ hours volunteers invested in 2017, including hours donated by several business groups who adopted the Garden for a day of service. Our volunteer-run Board gave an additional 1,000+ hours. The 3,000+ total equates, conservatively, to a $70,000 in-kind donation.

The dedication and enthusiasm of our team are reflected in the 2,000+ hours volunteers invested in 2017, including hours donated by several business groups who adopted the Garden for a day of service.

These contributions did not go unnoticed – Portland Parks Foundation named Yvonne Boisvert, a Friends founder and long-time volunteer, a 2017 Parks Champion. The award came with a $1,500 grant that she directed to the Garden on behalf of all the “champions” on our volunteer team.

Community Engagement

We continued to raise the Garden’s profile with an active calendar of public events, including a winter speaker series, hands-on rose care classes, pre- and middle- school tours, and an evening ice cream social and work party. Our third annual art show was a 2017 Rose Festival sanctioned event, drawing nearly 3,000 attendees and more than doubling attendance from prior years.

Portland Parks Foundation named Yvonne Boisvert, a Friends founder and long-time volunteer, a 2017 Parks Champion.

We hosted highly-praised tours for the American Rose Society and the AARP, a tour that included our recently developed guide to the historic Piedmont neighborhood. And we spread the word about the Garden beyond Portland, presenting at the American Rose Society PNW District Conference. These efforts are attracting a host of new visitors and potential support. For example, the Garden was selected as the site for Portland Parks’ Summer Free For All thank you event for sponsors and the Portland Parks Foundation’s 15-year anniversary celebration – events that generated marked interest in our spectacular venue.

Enhancements

In February, we created a street-level garden of 700 hardy, drought-tolerant pollinator plants to beautify the Rose Garden’s front door  on North Ainsworth. We also produced 268 rose identification markers. Professionally designed and easy-to-read, the new markers will be installed next spring.

New pollinator garden planted in February, and 268 new rose identification markers to be installed in Spring 2018.

Preservation

We have a $5,000 annual commitment to masonry repair, which your generous support has made possible. This year we completed the first two phases of planned repairs at the south entrance and to the bricks and drains bordering the southeast quadrant walkway. The third phase – repairs to a portion of bricks and drains around the fountain – is now underway.

Winter damage in 2017 has prompted us to accelerate our brick repair and preservation plans.

Last year’s severe winter accelerated damage to brickwork and drains in the remaining areas around the fountain. We believe it’s prudent to repair this damage as quickly as possible because it will only get worse, pose safety concerns and cost more to repair over time. Moving quickly on these repairs is likely to double our annual commitment to $10,000.

Friends Expenses

In addition to masonry repairs, it costs $4,000 annually for basics: insurance, volunteer support, speaker series and two community events. (The art show cost, covered by artist fees and sponsors, isn’t included.) We also think 2018 is the time to leverage the increased interest in the Garden by pursuing the Award of Excellence from the World Federation of Rose Societies. This effort requires more modest Friends funds – in the $2,000-3,000 range – for additional Garden signage and a comprehensive video for the award submission. So we’re working harder than ever to raise $15,000 by year end.

So we’re working harder than ever to raise $15,000 by year end.

This will ensure we can allocate $10,000 to speed critical brick repairs, have sufficient funds to cover pursuit of the Award of Excellence and importantly, keep our lights on.

Fundraising Efforts

We were so inspired by one of our dedicated volunteers who learned about the Park Champion award and decided to match the grant. She then challenged our supporters to pitch in with as many matching funds as possible. We also have another supporter who will match any donation of $250 or more, up to a total of $5,000.

We were so inspired by one of our dedicated volunteers who learned about the Park Champion award and decided to match the grant. She then challenged our supporters to pitch in with as many matching funds as possible.

Please help us continue the spirit of these challenges by becoming a Rose Garden champion during our year-end campaign. There are many ways to contribute. You can give a tax-deductible gift in any amount via these secure PayPal links, or send a check to Friends of Peninsula Park Rose Garden, 1631 NE Broadway, PMB 421, Portland OR 97232.

If you wish to use our Adopt-a-Rose  program for your year-end gift, visit our Adopt-a-Rose page for details or send your request to volunteers@penrosefriends.org.

Friends of Peninsula Park Rose Garden is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Our mission is to preserve, protect and enhance Peninsula Park Rose Garden as a heritage resource for all generations.

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