Floral arrangment by member - dress form DECEMBER 2016 MARKETPLACECONTRACOSTA.COM 23 Here are some of the reasons that members give for liking their club: • The club is warm, welcoming and very affordable • I am a beginner and all my questions are treated with interest and answered with great responses. • I joined the herb group. I learned how to use herbs in dishes and make baked goods using fresh ingredients. I do not need to rely so much on prepared frozen food from grocery stores anymore. (Study groups within the club respond to particular interests, for instance, succulents, herbs, crafts, and floral design.) • The EC garden club has also been very supportive of my pet project, The El Cerrito High School Garden. They have toured the garden, donated funds and attended work parties. • The plant table has great plants for sale that are very inexpensive and come with good advice. • I enjoy their trips to nurseries and garden shows. • What could be better than food and flowers combined? Examples of annual projects that the club either supports or conducts are: Arbor Day tree plantings which involve the City of El Cerrito and a local school. A garden contest in which El Cerrito front-yard gardens are nominated by club members. (While the gardens are nominated by club members, they cannot be those of members themselves.) Prizes are awarded to the top three gardens, and the prizes are presented at a city council meeting. The winning gardens provide fresh ideas, inspiration, and beauty. The club’s tent at the 4th of July festival in Cerrito Vista Park draws repeat visitors each year. It features home-propagated plants that grow well in the East Bay climate. The festival tent gets repeat visitors each year, probably due to the reasonable plant prices and the gardening advice that is freely given. Other projects have included plantings and garden maintenance at the senior center and two annual holiday projects: decorating the community center tree and making bedside floral arrangements for a local nursing home. Three Blue Star memorial markers were initiated in past years and are now watched over by garden club members. These markers honor members of the armed forces. Anyone is most welcome to join in the club’s monthly meetings (September through June) at the El Cerrito Community Center, 7007 Moeser Lane in El Cerrito. Most meetings (the exceptions are December, May, and June) are on the second Thursday of the month at 9:30 am. Questions about the club and its activities can be directed to Bonnie MacKenzie at 510-237-4654. The club’s website is at elcerritogardenclub.org.
Contra Costa Marketplace - Dec 2016
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