Special Bloom Report

Today, as 2012 draws to a close, we have a Special Bloom Report for you.

2012 has been a year of intense activity and capacity building, but one also of continued financial challenge. Our Chairman, Keith Crysler is going to tell you all about that in a moment, but first I would like to share a few thoughts and images from this past year.

Awards:

It is always a pleasure to tell you about recognition our community has received, and this year we have been blessed with numerous awards, among them Annapolis Royal’s selection as Maritimes Cultureville in September and the Gardens’ recognition in April as one of the “5 North American Gardens Worth Travelling For”. We are very fortunate indeed to live in such a wonderful community and to work in such magnificent surroundings.

(In that same vein, we can all show a little love for Annapolis Royal once again, by voting in the Reader’s Digest “Most Interesting Towns” Contest. Contest closes midnite Dec 17 so don’t delay, just do it now! )

The people – that’s what makes us tick:

While our Bloom Reports normally feature the flowers and plants, today I want to highlight the people who make this place tick. For without the people who work and play here, the gardens would not exist.

These people come in many forms…

Volunteers…

Staff…

Visitors…

Performers…

Teachers and students of all age groups…

In fact, as I gathered a variety of “people pictures” I was really surprised at the variety of activity that has taken place in the Historic Gardens this past year. Rather than have an email that is 30 pages long, I have gathered these retrospective images into a slide show, viewable at this Youtube link: A Year in the Life of the Gardens – 2012.  (Just to stretch our brains a bit, the background music is from Nutcracker – sounds of the Christmas season while viewing summer shots. Have fun with that…)

At this point I would like to introduce Board Chair Keith Crysler with a very important message for you on behalf of the Annapolis Royal Historic Gardens Society.

Bright Horizons Ahead

Troubled Waters Below

In many ways 2012 was a banner year for the Historic Gardens

  • Named one of “5 North American Gardens Worth Travelling For” by the Canadian Garden Tourism Council (April)
  • Thatching of our Acadian Cottage in collaboration with Acadian Seaplants Ltd. with extensive media coverage (May)
  • An increase in visitorship for the first time in 5 years and only the second time in 10 years; an improvement in every one of our earned revenue streams
  • The launch of the cooperative Acadian Passport and the staging of our first ever Acadian Kitchen Party (August)

Yet the Gardens continue to struggle with a persistent operating deficit, restricting our cash flow situation.  There was a high profile announcement of provincial and federal project grants on December 14, 2012.  While we are grateful that these project grants will help us maintain our infrastructure and enhance our revenue streams in the future, they do not help us with our current operating deficit.

There is still time to make a donation to the Gardens this year.  If you donate $100 or more you may choose one of two possible complimentary gifts:  Portrait of a Garden, a small and classy summary of the Gardens, or one of our gorgeous 2012 Christmas tree ornaments (apple blossom theme this year).

  

Thank you for your continuing support.

Keith Crysler,

Chair, Board of Directors,

Annapolis Royal Historic Gardens Society

Thanks Keith!

As you can see, lots of positive news and great momentum – but still tempered by a very real need for assistance to help our bottom line.

Last year we launched our very first Bloom Report Appeal, asking our subscribers to consider a donation to the Historic Gardens. The feedback to that request was very positive, not only in terms of donations but also with positive comments about the Gardens and all the work being done here.

More than $3000 was raised through the inaugural Bloom Report Appeal in a two week period. Our Bloom Report audience now numbers almost 2000 worldwide. Collectively, your donations can make a huge difference to the future of the Gardens.

So I join Keith in asking you to consider helping the Historic Gardens by responding to our Bloom Report Appeal in some way. Big or small – help in whatever way you feel you can. That is all we ask.

Below are the various options and mechanisms available to you for supporting the Historic Gardens:

Mail: Pop a cheque payable to the Annapolis Royal Historic Gardens Society in the mail with a note that you are responding to the Bloom Report Appeal. Mailing address: P.O. Box 278, Annapolis Royal, NS   B0S 1A0

Phone: We can take VISA & MC over the phone at (902) 532-7018. We’d love it if you called – it is really fun to connect with our Bloom Report readers!

In Person: If you are in the Annapolis Royal area, drop by December 19-21 and make your donation in person with VISA, MC, Debit, Cash or cheque.

Online: Visit our website and donate either directly via our Online Store, or via CanadaHelps which accepts donations on behalf of Canadian charities. Both will accept a variety of credit cards, and the Online Store will also accept Paypal transactions. Please make sure to reference “Bloom Report Appeal” in the notes/remarks section.

Did you know… that you can sign up for a monthly or quarterly payment plan if you prefer to donate in this way. A growing number of members and supporters are electing this option. Please contact us directly for details.

We’d like to leave you with another YouTube link, to another collection of photography – this time of the Gardens themselves and the floral residents within, and of the special community which surrounds us. Please enjoy “What a Wonderful World“.

On behalf of Board, Staff and volunteers, thank you so much for taking the time to read our message. If you have any questions, please feel free to email or call and we’ll do our best to answer them.

Cheers!

Trish

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