Anonymous donors match funds to support Batavia Arboretum
A mention in this column of the Batavia Arboretum on the grounds of Batavia High School last month has created "a real boon to our fundraising efforts," according to the Value our Trees organization.
Apparently, a brother of a former Batavia High School student who died during her freshman year in 1966, responded to the column by saying his siblings were offering a dollar-for-dollar matching fund up to $1,250 for the group and its effort to place a memorial plaque in the arboretum.
This student's class planted a tree in her memory during the arboretum's initial years between 1966 and 1968, and a private donor planted another tree in her memory later.
Rosemary Henders said the family wants to remain anonymous, but shared an email from the brother: "Our hearts and our money are committed to (our sister) and the creation of a memorial to her," he wrote. "We've waited over 50 years to see her name on a plaque and it's our intent to make certain that your team has the funds to accomplish this."
The timing is just right, Henders said, considering the organization is involved in a fundraising campaign now to raise $2,000 for the plaque to honor those for whom trees were planted, seeking donations from anyone interested in establishing this memorial at the arboretum.
This is a project that has its roots with the arboretum founder, Jim Hoover, but it never advanced after he left the district in 1968.
Henders wants to make sure her organization's records are complete in terms of whom was honored through a tree planting. She feels confident they are accurate, but is not 100 percent sure on some trees that may have been planted later.
Questions about donations or providing information about memorial plantings can be directed to Henders at (630) 406-9269 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Those looking to donate can send contributions to the Batavia Woman's Club, P.O. Box 967, Batavia, IL 60510 and clearly marked "Arboretum Plaque Fund."
Walk the gardens: A St. Charles High School student majoring in subjects that will equate to a career serving the environment -- or at least continue a love affair with plants -- will ultimately benefit from the Pottawatomie Garden Club's big summer event.
The club will fund a scholarship for a student majoring in agriculture, botany, conservation, ecology, environmental concerns, forestry, horticulture or other related studies from money raised during its July 9 garden walk.
The ladies of the club are busy prepping for an event that we know from past history will feature spectacular gardens.
But the important thing to make note of here is how and where to get tickets.
Those who purchase tickets on the club's website can pick up those tickets on the day of the event at 4N558 Hidden Oaks in St. Charles, where Fred and Ellen Smith's garden rooms will be on display. Garden lovers can also purchase tickets the day of the event at Wasco Nursery or Heinz Brothers Greenhouse Garden Center. Ticket booklets include a map and addresses of the featured gardens.
One of the gardens will appeal to history lovers, as Dave and Penny Newkirk's garden features an 1847 house and herb, flower and vegetable gardens planted in a style prevalent in the 1800s.
If attendees make that spot the last on their walk route, they will find refreshments served and various garden items and plants on sale in the Garden Gate boutique.
Helps the river: It's time again to support the River Corridor Foundation's work along the riverfront in St. Charles with the annual Bob Leonard 5K Run and 1K Family Color Run that start and end in Pottawatomie Park in St. Charles.
The transformation the foundation has created along the Fox River banks with the Bob Leonard Walkway is striking, making a walk from Mount St. Mary Park into downtown and beyond one of the most pleasant in the area.
The runs take place Sunday, July 31, and information about entry fees and registration is at signmeup.com/113228.
What is the "color" run? Organizers say that one has family members making their way through "clouds" of bright food-grade cornstarch intervals along the course.
For newbies: New to the area? Here's an important tip I can pass along, though it would be hard to believe you are not aware of this. The annual Swedish Days, which runs Tuesday-Sunday, June 21-26 in Geneva, is a community festival that helps us all embrace what is great about summer without traveling miles to do so or spending a ton of money to hear good music and enjoy good food.
Not to mention, Sunday's parade is always a fan favorite. Enjoy these six great days of summer. And come on, Mother Nature, play along and cooperate.