Garden Club celebrates 100 years

3/16/2017 | Payton North

Category: March

Garden Club Vice President Suzanne Reed and club President Janet Dolder cut the 100th Anniversary cake.
Reminder Publications submitted photo

Though Western Massachusetts's forecast reveals blustering winds, icy temperatures and barren conditions, the Springfield Garden Club has been celebrating their 100th anniversary and the beauty of plant life since January.

Founded in 1917 by Fanny Stebbins, Gurdon Gordon, Moses Lymann, Horace Rice and Grade Pettis-Johnson, the club lives on today with 97 active members from not only Springfield, but surrounding communities as well.  

Garden Club President Janet Dolder said, “It's a shame we didn't break 100 members for the anniversary, but we've had eight new members this year.”

To celebrate the centennial, a series of events are taking place each month including planting a garden in Forest Park, participating in Springfield Museum's Festival of Flowers and the clubs annual plant sale. Discussing their display, Timeless Beauties, Dolder explained, “There's going to be a fashion show with people dressing in costumes from all of the last ten decades in honor of our centennial, and they will be wearing flower hats and scarves and carrying flower pocketbooks to compliment their outfits.”

While there are numerous events this year, the club also holds monthly meetings, excluding June, July, and August. The get-togethers include a luncheon, followed by a speaker who will discuss either floral design, horticulture, or conservation.  “Jan Johnsen is coming on March 25th.  She's a world renowned landscape architect,” Dolder added, “She's really into finding serenity in the garden, and having gardening leave you in a peaceful mood.”

Wilbraham United Church has become the home of the club's meetings, which take place on the third Friday of each month. The meetings, as well as the events, are open to the public. However, a small $5 donation for attendance is suggested.  

“We hope that people will come out and join us and help us celebrate,” Dolder said.

The Springfield Garden Club welcomes the public to attend the festivities which are being held in various Western Massachusetts towns throughout the year.  For more information about meetings, events, and membership, go to

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