Is this email not displaying correctly? Try the web version.

Home | Education | The Park | Volunteer | Contribute

NEWSLETTER: August 2016

In this issue:

Crowdfunding Campaign

Help GRPC maintain the cleanest place to play in the South Bay!

With over 213,000 visitors since May 2015, the Rotary PlayGarden needs lots of TLC so we have launched a campaign to fund operations and maintenance.

Click here to pledge your support.

Summer Learning

Boys & Girls Club members from the Alum Rock, Smythe, and Levin clubhouses joined us for a week each in July for a half-day camp. Activities included geocaching, bike riding, and learning about the river environment, animals, and food production. Many thanks to our neighbors at Trader Joe's for providing behind-the-scenes tours that complemented the lesson in the Historic Orchard on pollination and propagation. Thanks too to the David & Lucile Packard Foundation for underwriting the cost of this program.

Now Hiring

Education Coordinator Cindy Moreno (right) is leaving us next month to join the Peace Corps, and Luana Rivera Palacio (left) will take on the coordinator role. We are seeking someone with staff management, event planning, and marketing experience for the full-time assistant position. If interested, please send an email to to receive a job description.

Pumpkins in the Park

Save the date! Pumpkins in the Park returns to Discovery Meadow Saturday, October 8th from 10 am to 4 pm. Free admission!

We need volunteers Friday afternoon and all day Saturday. For more information or to sign up, click here.

Family Adventure Packs

Just provide a photo ID with an address and you can check out an adventure pack from the Rotary PlayGarden attendant at no charge. Adventure packs have a GPS, bug catcher, two pairs of binoculars, magnifying glass, and several bug and animal ID guides. Follow a pre-set tour or pick any of the Points of Interest that are pre-loaded on the GPS. Packs can be checked out until 5:00 pm and must be returned by 6:00 pm. Many thanks to the Lennox Foundation for underwriting this free family activity.

Volunteer Corner

We partnered with Major League Soccer, San Jose Earthquakes, and Wells Fargo to remove debris from Guadalupe River as part of the MLS All-Star Day of Service. Lucky Boys & Girls Club members from the Alum Rock clubhouse got to meet the MLS volunteer team (see banner photo at top).

Cisco joined us to spruce up the Rotary PlayGarden entry as part of their Summer Day of Service.

A hearty thanks to all the volunteer groups that toiled to make GRPG a more beautiful place this past June:

California San Jose Mission

Cisco Systems

Creekside School

Friends of Children with Special Needs



Hope Services

Intel Corporation


Mission Bay

Morgan Autism Center

National Charity League

Sensiba San Fillipo

Stanford Medical Youth Science Program

And that is only the groups! We also appreciate the scores of individuals who come out weekly to make a difference. We logged over 2,356 volunteer hours in June.

Upcoming Volunteer Opportunties

  • Rose Garden Workdays
    Weds. and Sats. 8:30-11:30 am. More info.

  • Historic Orchard Volunteer Workday
    Sat. September 3rd, 8:30-11:30 am. Sign up.
  • Monthly River Cleanup
    Sat. August 20th, 8:30-11:30 am. Sign up.
  • Summer Rose Garden Deadheading
    Tues. August 9th, 5:30-7:30 pm. Sign up.


Meet Volunteer Vibha Arun
Vibha is a talented high school student who served as a summer intern with our education staff. Three days a week, she helped with field trips, Boys & Girls Club summer camp, and other tasks around the office. Not one to sit idle, Vibha also volunteers for Acterra at the Pearson-Arastadero Preserve in Palo Alto. When not out volunteering, you will find Vibha working on nature photography. Everyone at GRPC enjoyed Vibha and is grateful for all that she did for us.

So many ways to give:
Adopt A Rose, General Donations,
Rotary PlayGarden,
The Donor Walkway, Memberships,
Endowment, Critter Donations

Upcoming Events

Summer Deadheading in the Heritage Rose Garden

Tuesday, August 9th
5:30 to 7:30 pm

Help us promote the next bloom cycle by removing spent roses and get rewarded with ice cream!

Join us on the 2nd Tuesday evening of the month through summer. Dates as follows: August 9th and September 13th.

Click here to sign up.

What's Wrong with My Tomato? Summer Vegetable Pests and Problems

Saturday, August 13th
10:00 to 11:30 am
$10/members, $15/non-members

Do your tomatoes look tormented? Your squash shriveled? Your peppers peculiar? Come for help! UCCE Master Gardeners will talk about the most common challenges vegetable gardeners face this time of year and how to manage them. Participants are invited to bring in plant samples that are not doing well for diagnosis and discussion (larger samples are better), insects they have found damaging their plants (alive and well contained, if possible), and vegetables that just don't look right.

Click here to sign up.

Summer Fruit Tree Pruning

Saturday, August 20th
9:00 am to 12:00 pm
$10/members, $15/non-members

Summer is an ideal time to train young trees and encourage optimal fruit production. Summer Fruit Tree Pruning, a sequel to our dormant pruning workshop, will be held in the Historic Orchard. Using demonstrations and hands-on practice, professional landscaper Sean McGrail will teach you how to slow down growth, increase light, and remove disease from trees.

Click here to sign up.

Homeschool Classes

Mad Science

Welcome back homeschooling families. We have added a third day - Friday!

For September, we explore Mad Science activities in the park. Students will learn about lab safety and the use of basic lab equipment and then create simple chemical reactions and analyze them in our mini lab, just like a real scientist! All materials will be provided.

Crystal Clear Science
Sept. 8th/9th/12th

Colorful Science Lab
Sept. 19th/22nd/23rd

Fizzy Bubbly Science

Sept. 26th/29th/30th

Class pricing is $5 more/per student/per class for this month to cover the cost of materials.

Click here for more information on our homeschool program.

Viva Calle Returns

Take to the streets on September 18th.

Click here for more information.

Green Living

Is Your Gardener a Green Gardener?

Learn more about the Santa Clara Valley Green Gardener Program.

Legacy Giving

Why Should You Include a Charitable Gift in Your Will (Or Living Trust)?

  1. It's simple to do. It can be as easy as including language stating, "I give $20,000 to Guadalupe River Park Conservancy."
  2. You can change your mind. We won't receive the gift until after your death. During your lifetime, you can amend anything you choose, i.e., beneficiaries, amounts, etc.
  3. Tax-wise, it could be beneficial. Gifts to qualified charitable organizations reduce the value of your estate for estate tax purposes.
  4. It's an easy way to support Guadalupe River Park Conservancy, and we'd be grateful for your gift. Bequests of every size build our future financial strength.
Home | Education | The Park | Volunteer | Contribute