MAY 2021 NEWS BLOG
I hope this message finds you happy and gardening!
It is intended to bring you up-to-date with our club activities and preview what is planned for the summer months. As always, check out our Facebook Page for more photos and details on all our activities...
We recently conducted some fun (and profitable) meetings and activities. I’ll post some photos and accounts below.
But first, Club business…
Financial: Anne reported the current balance is $6,564.07. The April plant sale garnered approximately $2,500, less expenses.
Leslie made a motion, Sharen seconded, and it was unanimously agreed that a portion of the plant sale proceeds will be distributed as follows:
$500 to Mattie Williams Neighborhood Center,
$500 to The Safety Harbor Dish,
$500 to Folly Farm Nature Preserve Summer Camp scholarships to be distributed at $100 each.
$500 for expenses related to the construction of the Wind Phone.
A motion was made, Barbara and Anne seconded, and it was unanimously agreed for permission for Leslie to spend up to $500 for a temporary screen room structure to house butterfly plants.
Plant Sales: The Club will be having plant sales the 2nd Saturday of every month. The City of Safety Harbor will advertise the sales.
Membership: 30 years and still growing is more than a slogan! We have added several new members in the last month or so!
Leah Metz, a good friend and longtime member of the Safety Harbor Garden Club passed away on May 8th of a heart attack. There will be a service for family members only. Leah leaves her husband Bob; and for those who wish to express your condolences the address is as follows:
Mr. Robert Metz
2806 Countryside Blvd. #516
Clearwater, Fl. 33761
Summer General Membership Meetings:
Our usual meeting space, Moccasin Lake Nature Park, is currently limiting interior meeting capacity to 20 individuals so we are looking at some alternatives.
Several ideas for summer meetings were discussed, including road trips, and garden tours such as Selby Gardens, Boyd Hill, Brooker Wildflower Walk (James Stevenson), Sustainable Gardens near St. Pete Pier, and many more.
So far this is what is planned:
May Meeting: No physical meeting is planned for May.
Gary will send detailed Club activity info to all members, in “blog” form, in place of the May meeting. You are always invited to our Garden Club site at Folly Farm on Monday mornings. There is always learning going! Starting @ 8:00am.
June Meeting: The June meeting will be a “Birthday Party” at Folly Farm to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the native wildflower garden. It will also be a planting party. Gary stated he will possibly set up sprinklers ( for cooling off!). This meeting will be held Wednesday, June 23rd.
July Meeting: Considerations for the July meeting are a trip to Selby Gardens or possibly Brooker Creek(James Stevenson). Costs for Selby Garden entrance will be researched. Brooker Creek would be free and has indoor and outdoor meeting space. Gary will work on getting a bus and Gary/Leslie will get with Sherry.
Wind Phone & Memorial:
Here is a message regarding our newest construction project at Folly Farm- The Wind Phone. Sent from City of Safety Harbor social media, it was also shared to our Facebook page:
“A very special shout out to the Safety Harbor Garden Club and Parks staff – THANK YOU!!! The SH Garden Club has made another amazing donation to Folly Farm. Garden members Chris Dotson & Gary Sawtelle designed a wind phone after conversations with regular park user, Laura Grimme McCullough, who brought the idea forward. After receiving approval, Chris Dotson went to work building the wind phone from scrap wood pieces at Building Maintenance, and the club funded the remaining materials needed. Parks staff assisted the club with moving & final placement of the booth within a cleared, leveled area of the park.
What is a wind phone, you ask?
A wind phone is a telephone booth visitors can hold one-way conversations with deceased loved ones. Initially created by garden designer Itaru Sasaki in 2010 to help him cope with his cousin's death, it was opened to the public in the following year after the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami killed over 15,000 people in the Tōhoku region.
The wind phone has since received over 30,000 visitors. A number of replicas have been constructed around the world, and it has served as the inspiration for several novels and films. The original wind phone is a white, glass-paned telephone booth containing a black, disconnected rotary dial telephone on a metal shelf. A notebook is placed next to the telephone for messages of remembrance.
Known replicas within the United States:
Oakland, California – Feb 2017 to commemorate the 36 people who perished in the Ghost Ship warehouse fire.
Provincetown, Massachusetts – Jan 2020 as a temporary wind phone by a collaboration of ten local artists.
Marshall, North Carolina – October 2020 by a local resident in collaboration with a sculptor after learning of the Otsuchi phone in Japan after her mother’s death.
Aspen Mountain, Colorado – March 2021 was constructed anonymously as an outlet for people mourning deaths caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Safety Harbor, Florida – April 2021 was constructed by the SH Garden Club as an outlet for those who have messages they wish to share with their lost friends and family. Know that your words will be taken by the wind to exactly where they need to go. Continue your conversations…pick up the phone.
Safety Harbor Garden Club Picnic
More than 40 members and guests attended the annual picnic at Safety Harbor City Park from 11:00-2:00 on April 21, 2021. The picnic celebrated the 30th anniversary of the Club. Masks and social distancing were required.
Andrea Norwood, Director of Safety Harbor Leisure Services and Parks spoke about the partnership between the City of Safety Harbor and the Safety Harbor Garden Club. She mentioned that the Club will be getting a shed and greenhouse to be supplied by the City. Andrea introduced Robert Moser, City of Safety Harbor Parks Operations Manager. She also thanked the Club for all that we do.
Joe Ayoub, Mayor Safety Harbor, expressed thanks for all the Club’s work. He recently toured Mullet Creek Park and Folly Farm and commented on the amazing work and value the Club brings to this community. He encouraged the Club to keep up the good work.
Gary brought Barbara Nelson up to the speaker’s table. Barbara was the first president of Safety Harbor Garden Club in 1991. Barbara stated that the garden club has been her “heart” since 1991. The Club started at the Safety Harbor Museum and Barbara stated the theme for the first year was “Living Color” and she read a letter she wrote in 1991. The words were as relevant today as they were then.
The President’s pins, which are lapel pins with the new garden club logo, were presented to the Board members and dignitaries in attendance. President’s pins were awarded to Michelle, our first volunteer at Folly Farm, and to Chris Dotson for all his extensive work for the Club. President’s pins were also presented to past presidents and Board members.
As far as Club news, Gary stated that a “pocket” butterfly garden has been established at the Library, along the art walk area.
Sandy Huff spoke of Violet, who started the Club. She also encouraged members to serve on the Board. Gary stated that Sandy has always graciously given us space on her farm to store and process our plants, for thirty years.
Leslie was awarded the “Fabulous Folly Farmers” pitchfork trophy as Volunteer of the Year.
Leslie dramatically revealed and modeled the new T-Shirt. The T-Shirts are violet in color to honor our Club founder, and include the new logo honoring the 30-year anniversary. T-Shirts were distributed to members in good standing. To be considered a member in good standing, a member must pay dues and have worked on a project.
There was a nice variety of food and desserts, which were served “cafeteria style” by the Board members and others. Special thanks to Kay for planning the food, Jennifer for the drinks, and Gary’s daughter for making the cupcakes.
A wide variety of garden-themed items were offered for silent auction.
Safety Harbor Garden Club Spring Picnic at “The Pavilion at City Park”.
Safety Harbor Enchanted Garden Fest / with the
Safety Harbor Garden Club Plant Sale
There were over 500 paid entrees to the first ever Safety Harbor “Enchanted Garden Fest”!
The Safety Harbor Garden Club hosted tours, Butterfly Safaris and showcased some pretty fancy Fairy houses. We also had a very successful Plant Sale!
Butterfly safaris, Plant Sales, Tours!
Fairy Houses! and our own fairy Ms. Julia! aka Beach Girl
Sales with our hardworking manager Ms. Leslie....
It was a great day with an outstanding turn out by our Garden Club members! Thank you for all of your time and hard work!
Our plant sales exceeded $2,000!
And our last activity...
Check our Facebook Page for more photos of our activities and information about our events! Facebook page
Come to our Folly Site on Monday Mornings and garden with us!
Summer hours startup around 8 - 8:30 .
Next group meet up is at Folly Farm on Wednesday, June 23rd.
More info as it get closer!