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NEWSLETTER: December 2017

In this issue:

Feeling generous? We have lots of ways for you to contribute!

End-of-year gifts help us to:

Maintain Rotary PlayGarden as an inclusive, clean, and safe place to play.

Produce excellent events -- Pumpkins in the Park and Super Guadalupe River Run-- that get people into the park and enhance the quality of life in San Jose.

Engage volunteers and advocate for the expansion and upkeep of the downtown trail - the backbone of the city's trail network.

Ways you can help include corporate matching. Double your contribution if you work for one of the many generous companies in Silicon Valley that offer a matching gift program!

The Donor Walkway

Looking for a way to pay tribute to someone? Consider a granite paver or park bench in Arena Green. Click here for more information.

Rotary PlayGarden Bench Dedications

For a tax-deductible donation of $5,000 (small bench) or $10,000 (large), the donor’s name or dedication stays on a bench at Rotary PlayGarden for five years. Click here for more information.

Donor-Advised Gifts
Contributing directly from your donor-advised fund to GRPC is easy. Click here to give through DAF Direct.

Stock Gifts
Did you know that you can donate appreciated stock (held for at least one year) and take a tax deduction for the fair market value of your gift? You avoid paying capital gains taxes, and we don't owe taxes when we sell the donated stocks so 100% of your gift goes to support our education, advocacy and stewardship efforts.

Please let us know if you are interested in making a stock donation. Your broker will need the following information to make the transfer:

Morgan Stanley
DTC# 0015
For credit to Guadalupe River Park Conservancy
Acct # 574-584393
GRPC FEIN 77-0166797

Stop by our office or click here to pull a tag from our holiday tree (critter care, education and stewardship program supplies). You can also explore our critter care wish list on Amazon.

Super Guadalupe River Run

Kick off Super Bowl Sunday with the annual Super Guadalupe River Run (10K/5K/Kids' Fun Run) at 9 AM on Sunday, February 4th.

Register today! Early-bird rates expire December 31st.

Don’t fumble the opportunity to burn some calories. Whether you go long for 6.2 miles or tackle the 3.1 mile quarterback sneak, you’ll earn your game-time guacamole on the Guadalupe. Huddle with family, friends, training partners, neighbors, co-workers to run a 10K or 5K -- cross the goal line to score guilt-free indulgence during the game.

You won’t want to miss the second in our series of collectors’ shirts (graphic above)! Proceeds benefit our education and stewardship efforts.

Click here to register.

BEEs in the Park

We are thrilled to receive funding from FIRST 5 Santa Clara County for our Beginning Environmental Explorers (BEE) program. BEE offers an early introduction into environmental science. Designed for children age 2-5 years old, this FREE program is taught by Guadalupe River Park Conservancy environmental educators. Topics include rivers, frogs, birds, and more! Classes are held from 11 AM to 12 PM every Wednesday (English) and Friday (Spanish) in the Rotary PlayGarden Amphitheater; rain or shine -- no sign-up necessary!

Follow the PlayGarden on Facebook for details.

Volunteer Corner

Intel employees joined us to plant California Poppies and spruce up the Hedding St. frontage. We look forward to a colorful showing in the spring!

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

California San Jose LDS Missionaries
Ernst & Young
Friends of Children with Special Needs
Hope Services
Independence High School Key Club
Milpitas High School Key Club
Mission Bay
Morgan Autism Center
Piedmont Hills High School Key Club
Silver Creek High School Key Club
South Bay Heritage Rose Group
Westmont High School, CSF
Yerba Buena High School

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 3,404 volunteer hours in October.

Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities

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

  • Historic Orchard Workday
    Sat. Jan. 6th, 8:30-11:30 am. Sign up.
  • Christmas Bird Count
    Sun. Dec. 17th, 8:00 am-12:00 pm. Sign up.
  • Education Program Intern - Ongoing
    We are looking for positive, go-getters who enjoy the outdoors and are passionate about education for a program support role. We would also love to have someone who is computer savvy, creative, and detail-oriented. E-mail us for more information.
  • Rotary PlayGarden Support - Ongoing
    Attendant Assistant and gardening support opportunities. E-mail Ricky for more information.
  • Front Office Receptionist - Ongoing
    Shifts available Wednesday afternoons, Thursday mornings or afternoons, and Friday mornings. E-mail Ricky for more information.


Meet Volunteers: Marianne, David, and Scott
Marianne, David, and Scott are our lead Heritage Rose Garden volunteers. Marianne has volunteered in the garden since 1998, David since 2002, and Scott since 2004. Between the three of them, they have donated over 15,000 hours of volunteer service over the past 20 years. The Heritage Rose Garden would not be what it is today without them. Thanks for all you do for the garden!

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

Upcoming Events

Homeschool Programs

Jr. Geologists

Classes are held on Mondays, Thursdays, & Fridays.

Rock and Roll (Down the River)
Dec. 4/7/8

School of Rocks
Dec. 11/14/15

Can You Dig It?

Dec. 18/21/22

Click here to register.

Christmas Bird Count

Sunday, December 17th
8:00 am to noon

The is a census of early winter bird populations. More than 50,000 volunteer observers across the Americas take part in counting birds in their particular area. The result is over a century of data on bird populations from North to South America, which is used by scientists to monitor bird population changes over time.

Please join us to complete the census of birds in the section of Guadalupe River Park & Gardens from Coleman Ave. to Hedding St. No experience is necessary.

Click here to sign up.

Native & Drought Tolerant Planting Techniques

Saturday, December 9th
9:30 am to 12:00 pm

Discover how and why drought tolerant plants need less water, and how to plant and care for them. Learn how to prune parts of native plants, such as branches, buds, and roots to improve or maintain their health.

This workshop takes place at the Nature's Inspiration Gardens in the Courtyard Garden. Parking is available at Seymour and Walnut St.

Click here to register.

Pruning Lessons in the Heritage Rose Garden

Beginning Wednesday, Jan. 10th
Wednesdays and Saturdays
8:30 to 11:30 am

Hands-on rose pruning lessons will be offered at the San Jose Heritage Rose Garden every Wednesday and Saturday beginning January 10th. Lessons begin promptly at 8:30 am.

Come to learn, engage with community members, and have fun! Please bring leather gloves and bypass shears if you have them; loaners are available if needed. Wear closed-toe shoes and bring a full water bottle. Meet in the center of the garden.

Click here for more information.

Education Scholarships

Calling all teachers! Did you know that Title One schools and special needs groups are eligible for a full field trip scholarship, and $300 for transportation? Funding is limited so don't miss out - share with those who can benefit from this amazing opportunity!

Visit our scholarship page for more information.

Legacy Giving

If you are over 70 1/2 years old and have an IRA account, you can make a tax-free charitable donation of up to $100,000 until December 31.

The advantage is that the transferred amount does not count as taxable income but does count toward your required minimum distribution.

Please note, to qualify as an IRA Charitable Rollover, the distribution must go directly from your IRA custodian to the charity.


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.
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