Convention Chairs: Karmyn Brown, Sue Wallace, Carol Larson, Joan Goebel
Thank you to all our wonderful WGCF members and guests who participated in the 88th Annual Convention at Barker’s Island in Superior, “Take it to the Lake.” It was such a joy to greet our old friends and make new ones. Your warmth, enthusiasm and generosity made this a convention to be treasured.
We started “Taking it to the Lake” by learning about gardening in the north country with Tom Hansen of the Duluth Grill where they grow food for the restaurant. And if you can’t grow outdoors, a visit to Bay Produce taught us how to grow hydroponic tomatoes indoors. Kym Christopherson of Delicious Yoga taught us how prepare our bodies for gardening as Mother Earth Meets Yoga. Birds, bees and peas were the focus of Mary Bluth’s earring class. And speaking of bees, Jon Otis of Lake Superior Honey gave us a taste of honey. Louise Levy helped us understand that What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your Trees.”
Our Thursday guest speaker, Dr. Erika Washburn of the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve highlighted research activities taking place on the lake to connected communities to Lake Superior. She also described the Rivers2Lake educational program which provides extended training, mentoring, and resources to teachers for use with students. We had the opportunity to visit the NERR Learning Center, lab and the City of Superior Rain Garden on Friday. Then we literally “took it to the lake” with a Vista Fleet boat tour of Lake Superior, the harbor and the St. Louis River.
Our floral design luncheon featured six creative designers who described their inspiration (and secrets) to create designs and how they used these to create “Take it to the Lake.” They are Marion Books, Lynne Ehnert, Carole Hopp, Wendy Kramer, Lynn Laufenberg and Judy Pitcher.
During the Installation Banquet, our Bronze Award winner, Kevin Schoessow, an Area Agriculture Development Agent with UW Extension, spoke about the Spooner display garden and showed pictures of how it was turned into an AAS national award winning garden. He also talked about the newly introduced plants.
Special guest, NGC President Sandra Robinson spoke about the effects of pesticides, the role of native pollinators and plants and the importance of habitat for bees and butterflies. NGC is partnering with the National Wildlife Federation to work on the Million Garden Challenge by the National Pollinator Garden Network. The goal is to help establish one million gardens to support pollinator recovery.
Congratulations to all the Award winners, the Silent Auction winners and the Tisket-A-Tasket winners. Indianhead District is very proud of two of our own Spooner Garden Club members, Julie Hustvet and Bonnie Brandt.
Julie won the Creative Horticultural Award #3. For 14 years she has developed and hosted the New Ventures Garden Seminar to educate the public on all aspects of gardening. She has support from the Spooner Garden Club, North Country Master Gardeners, Northwood School and numerous businesses.
Bonnie Brandt won the $50 Hopp Media Award #34. She compiled a 200 page genealogy commemorating the Spooner Garden Club 80 Years of History 1932-2012. Bonnie has created a marvelous record of our past and a stepping stone for the future. New members will see our proud history.
Congratuations!!! You are ALL winners.
Written by Sue Wallace