Family Fishing Rodeo
On Saturday, June 6, Birmingham Botanical Gardens participated in Birmingham Parks and Recreation’s Family Fishing Rodeo at East Lake Park. Check out the photos!
On Friday, May 8, Darla Williamson brings “Beginning Zentangle” to The Gardens from 5:30-9 p.m. She has offered a guest blog post to The Gardens Blog to talk more about this unique educational opportunity. To register for “Beginning Zentangle” online, visit www.bbgardens.org.classes.
“Honey, I love your mother, but what am I supposed to do with this Zentangle® stuff?” That is the question I asked my husband when my Zentangle kit arrived in the mail from my mother-in-law in late 2010! Little did I know how much impact a little box would have on my life!
First of all, what is Zentangle®?
Zentangle is an easy to learn, fun and relaxing method of creating beautiful images by drawing structured patterns. Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts created the Zentangle Method about 10 years ago to share the relaxation and focus you feel as you create a Zentangle. It is a very mindful activity – a great way to relax and be in the moment. It is liberating – no rulers, no erasers, just a pen, pencil, tile and room to explore. It is worldwide – there are currently about 1,500 Certified Zentangle Teachers (CZTs) in 25 countries around the world! (I was certified in October, 2011.) It is very now – in Shutterstock’s Creative Trends for 2015 report, they used video clips, music tracks and 47 million images to look at which searches and styles were on the rise to predict creative trends for 2015. Zentangle was named as one of the Top 5 Design Trends.
What I love about Zentangle®
There are no mistakes! – Zentangle is not about trying to be perfect or make an exact replica. There is way more beauty in imperfection anyway! Zentangle is about being in the moment, enjoying the moment, and the bonus is you have a little piece of art as a result of your time. I think one of my favorite things about Zentangle is that you can take it and make it what you like. If we are working on a tangle (pattern) and you are inspired to embellish it your own way – that’s ok. Creativity - it really opens Pandora’s Box! Not only for me, but students frequently tell me stories about how Zentangle has helped them realize they are creative and they try lots of new things they never imagined they could do, and people who already work in another art form tell me how it helps them take a fresh approach to their art! Anyone can do it! – it really is true – almost anyone can do it. I’ve taught Zentangle to almost 1,500 people since March 2012, from all walks of life – doctors, lawyers, teachers, housewives (aka domestic goddesses), artists, bee keepers, yoga instructors, fitness experts, nurses, corporate types (from executives to entry level), clowns (seriously!), students, small business owners, in a homeless shelter trying to get their lives back on track, and everything in between, Age 5 to Age 90, recovering from strokes, With OCD, ADD, Autism and Depression. Relaxation - I get so relaxed doing Zentangle I lose track of time, ask my husband
Walking a new Path
I’ve always been creative and have dabbled in many things – interior design, homemade bath products, wire art, travel tags, and I took a pottery class 20+ years ago that I loved. When I received the kit in late 2010, I had been in the corporate world over 15 years, in banking 12, and in Birmingham 10 years. For many years I loved my bank job in distribution planning (figuring out how many branches a market should have, where they should be, managing projects). I could look for creative solutions to problems, I loved working with people all across the southeast and I loved the sense of accomplishment. But I had reached a point where the stress level was no longer cyclical, it was pretty much nonstop, and I knew I wanted to do something different, but had no idea what. So I opened my little box, pulled out the pens and got to work! I loved it. I woke up one morning with an overwhelming voice in my head saying “Teach Zentangle!” It took six months for me to get into a certification class, but in October 2011 I became a Certified Zentangle Teacher and I quit my job on January 31, 2012! Teaching Zentangle has blessed me in more ways than I ever imagined. I’ve met wonderful people and I get to share my love of art with them. I also get to be creative every day – I also do pottery, mixed media, and fiber art!
Fall Yoga Series for families
On Wednesday, families were led by Annie Damsky of Villager Yoga in the Fall Yoga Series for families. The seesions take place each Wednesday at 3:30 until November 19. To learn more about rates and to reserve a spot online, visit www.bbgardens.org/classes.
Docent Training – September 2014
As The Gardens welcomes a new school year, it also welcomed special guests and education partners, Birmingham Audubon Society! On Tuesday, September 9, Education Manager Helena Uber-Wamble and BAS Volunteers Ty Keith and Louise Ayer Tommie introduced docents to the joys of bird watching as they do for the many school students during Discovery Field Trips. Participants also went birding along the new Secret Life of Trees trail (kindergarten trail) and accomplish 2-in-1!
For Thursday’s Natural Beauty class, two mother-daughter groups joined Elinor and Winfield Burks, Linda Norred and her mother Jane Salsbury and Teresa Roberts and her mother Betty Carraway, who was in town from Louisiana. Linda visited The Gardens last year and knew it would be the perfect place to visit with her mom, aunt and cousin on their all girls Mother’s Day trip to Birmingham.
Avondale School visits The Gardens
On May 6, 3rd grade students at Avondale School visited The Gardens to take part in Discovery Field Trips. Mr. and Mrs. William “Bill” Barnes provided a picnic lunch for the group. Mr. and Mrs. Barnes have adopted classes at Avondale School, and each year, they welcome their students, teachers and parents for a complimentary lunch at The Gardens following their visit for Discovery Field Trips.
2013 Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon
On Thursday, Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens launched a yearlong celebration of its 50th Anniversary at its annual Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon. Honored at the luncheon were (L to R):
A. Brand Walton, Jr. Unsung Hero Volunteer of the Year: Natalie Lee
Ida C. Burns Volunteer of the Year: Mike Rushing
Plantspeople of the Year: Alicia and Ken Hall
Educator of the Year: Carol Hagood
Our Volunteer Partner of the Year was awarded to the Native Plant Group, pictured below (L to R): Ann Katholi, Janice Williams, Sally Price, Peggy Thompson, Mary Phillips, Gail Snyder, Jan Holliday, Linda Nolan and Anne Parrish.
Executive Director & CEO Fred Spicer, Former Mayor Bernard Kincaid, Councilor Kim Rafferty, Administrative Assistant to the Mayor Charles Long and former Gardens Director Gary Gerlach
Mary Alice and Bill Thurman
Linda and Archie Blackmon
Verna Gates and Carol Ogle
Peggy Thompson and Mary Phillips
Amanda Clark and Margaret Bish
Membership Assistant Rona Walters, Education Activities Specialist Dawn Coleman, Education Coordinator Ellen Hardy
Kaul Wildflower Garden Curator John Manion and Mike Rushing
Conservatory cake created by Pastry Arts
Entertainment provided by Sue Nuckols
The Gardens plants trees in North Smithfield
On Veteran’s Day, The Gardens continued longterm reforestation efforts across Birmingham with a tree planting in North Smithfield. These efforts have largely focuses on areas devastated by the storms of April 27, 2011.
North Smithfield is an often overlooked, storm-damaged area because it is an unincorporated neighborhood. Because they are unincorporated it’s been hard for them to recover. They came together to rebuild their fire station and and now maintain a volunteer station. They also rebuilt their neighborhood park so that the kids would have somewhere to play. The restored park, which is where the community holds a majority of its events, didn’t have shade trees. So the neighborhood along with The Storm Water Management department of Jefferson county, Hana Burwinkle, approached Birmingham Botanical Gardens to donate trees to help rebuild and shade the park. The neighborhood consists of mostly military veterans so the trees were planted on Veteran’s Day. The park and the main road next to it are in the process of being changed to reflect the veterans of the neighborhood.
The Gardens donated 60 trees for the park, 100 trees for homeowners to plant in their yards and 1 ceremonial tree that was placed near their welcome sign. It was a collaboration between the Storm Water Management Department, Birmingham Botanical Gardens, The Alabama Forestry Commission, The North Smithfield neighborhood committee, Veterans who live in North Smithfield and the volunteer firefighters.