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NEWSLETTER: April 2015

In this issue:

Rotary PlayGarden

We are so grateful for the Rotary's vision, leadership, and generosity!  This fantastic park will open in May, once the landscaping is established -- stay tuned for a date.

We are fundraising to cover maintenance costs and appreciate all donations.

Interested in volunteering at the PlayGarden? If so, please send a message to

Adopt a Rose

Looking for a distinctive Mother's Day gift? A bouquet of roses will last a week, but a rose bush will bloom throughout the year. With your donation of $50 (no package) or $60 (with package), we will help you select the perfect rose and prepare a gift box for your Mom.

Education Updates

Last year, we received a $83,000 grant from the Lennox Foundation that helped create an outdoor classroom, funded field trips for Title 1 schools, purchased tablet computers and much more. Some Lennox Foundation board members visited on March 13th to see what we'd done with the funds. Imagine our joy when we received a letter last week with the following, "We were so impressed with your facility and programs, we decided to 'round up' your grant from the $72,833 requested to $100,000.” Many thanks to Amelia Norris and her family for their involvement in and support of our programs! The new grant will be used to create family workshops, inject art into our STEM curriculum, develop Maker activities, upgrade technology and much more.

Education Coordinator Cindy Moreno made a presentation about adapting programs to serve people with special needs at the March Mid-peninsula Environmental Educators Alliance meeting.

Due to the drought, the California Department of Fish & Wildlife canceled last year's aquariums in the classroom program. Though the drought persists, this year they are using hatchery fish instead of native steelhead so the fish eggs we are incubating will be released in San Jose's Lake Cunningham. Stop by to see them!

Volunteer Corner

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

Apple Computer, Inc.
Boy Scout Troop 485
California San Jose Mission
Cisco Systems
Evergreen Valley High School Leo's Club
Hands on Bay Area
Homestead High School National Honor Society
Intel Corporation
Los Gatos High School
Milpitas High School Move Club
Morgan Autism Center
National Charity League, Heritage Oaks Chapter
National Charity League, Saratoga Chapter
Notre Dame High School
One Brick
Piedmont Hills High School Interact Club
Yerba Buena High School Interact Club

And that is only the groups! We also appreciate the scores of individuals who come out weekly to make a difference. We logged more than 1620 volunteer hours in February.

Upcoming Volunteer Opportunties

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

  • Monthly River Clean Up
    Sat. April 18, 8:30-11:30 am. Sign up.

  • Historic Orchard Volunteer Work Day
    Sat. April 4th, 8:30-11:30 am. Sign up.


Meet the Board Member Joann Zimmerman
Joann is a Bay Area native and a long-term resident of Santa Clara Valley. A recently retired health care executive, she has provided strategic leadership for local health care systems over the past 25 years. Joann received her Bachelors of Arts in Communication and Public Policy at UC Berkeley; a Nursing Diploma from St. Luke's School of Nursing; a Master's of Science Degree in Health Education and Leadership; and a Certificate of Completion at the Stanford Business School Executive Program. She enjoys being connected with her two grown daughters, regular exercise at the gym and local hikes, experiencing the local arts, and trying new restaurants and food adventures. Thank you for sharing your time and talents Joann!

Meet Volunteer Tyler Watts
Tyler Watts, a San Jose local, joins us every week to help maintain our native plants and compost bins. His passion for the natural world and native plants are a perfect match for us and stem from his days backpacking in the High Sierra and taking classes at De Anza College. Tyler spent 5 years in the United States Army. When he isn't busy here spreading his smiles and tending to our compost, he can be found taking long strolls and reading history and sci-fi novels. This month marks his one-year volunteering anniversary with us; thank you Tyler!

So many ways to give:
Adopt A Rose, General Donations,
Rotary Children's Playgarden,
The Donor Walkway, Memberships,
Endowment, Critter Donations

Upcoming Events

Homeschool Programs

Botany On Your Plate

Explore with us the different types of edible plants found at the Guadalupe River Park and Gardens. Students will sample and learn about the different fruits grown in our Heritage Orchard while a trip to the local supermarket will allow students to learn about how far our food travel in order to reach our plates.

San Jose Veggies
April 1st/2nd

Fruit Forest
April 8th/9th

To the Market!
April 15th/16th

Fresh Feast
April 22nd/23rd

Digging Deep!
April 29th/30th

Click here to learn more!

Tomatoes, Peppers, and More!

Tomatoes, Peppers, and More! Saturday, April 4th 10:00am to 12:00pm Ages 16 and up $25/members, $30/non-members

Learn how to grow your own summer vegetables and flowers from seeds and seedlings. In this hands-on workshop, Master Gardener Liz Calhoon will discuss everything seeds need to grow into healthy, productive plants. You will sow a variety of seeds and pot up seedlings while receiving valuable advice on caring for them. You will take home a flat of vegetable and flower seedlings for your summer garden – tomatoes, peppers, squash, and more, a value of $75! Pre-registration is required by April 2.

More info.

Greywater Basics: Reusing Household Water In Your Landscape!

Sunday, April 26th
10:00am to 1:00pm
Ages 18 and Up
$10/members, $15/non-members

Join certified greywater installer Alan Hackler to learn how to safely and easily reuse your laundry, sink or shower water in your home garden. In this three-hour workshop, Alan will cover local codes and regulations, greywater safe soaps, and the simple plumbing modifications needed to redirect your household water into your backyard garden. The second half of the workshop will be hands-on, and participants will have the chance to work with the parts and tools necessary to install a simple greywater system. In addition to being a certified greywater installer, Alan Hackler is a talented landscape designer and the owner of Bay Maples landscaping.

More info.

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.

Save the Date

Window on the River Park

A reception to thank our donors.

Date: Thursday, June 4, 2015 - 5:00 to 7:00 PM

Generously hosted by Adobe Systems Inc.

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