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Gala in the Garden

Gala in the Garden logoEnchanted Garden: A Botanical Fantasy

May 3, 2009 (Sunday) – 3:00 PM-7:00 PM

The 2009 Gala in the Garden was a blustery, but very beautiful day. The Gala auction could not have been more packed with plants of all shapes and sizes, non-botanical items from original paintings, intricate original wood carving art, gift certificates for personalize gourmet dinners, to pet-sitting. The Southern String Band provided great music, while Catering Works provided a feast of gourmet treats specializing in local products and flavor. A good time was had by all!

Relive all the fun through the Gala photographs, courtesy of Becky Kirkland, Communications Services, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

A very special thanks to our Gala Sponsors, Auction Donors, Honorary and Event Chairs, the Gala Committee, and all the JCRA volunteers. This "enchanted" day would not have happened without your help and support.

In the garden is a GALA Party.
O Look! Connoisseur plants herbaceous and hearty!
The crowd dressed up in festive hats and threads,
They come to admire garden plants and beds.
And the favorite choices in the auction wait,
OH YES your bid was just great fate!  
Such thrill, effervescence, green treasures swirl.
Like J. C.—you can Plan and Plant for a Better World!
     teb 2009

"Our Gala in the Garden has become a harbinger of summer gardening. The gardening community gathers to enjoy the Arboretum, visit with friends, bid on gardening gifts and one-of-a-kind plants donated from local nurseries." Ted Bilderback, Ph.D.


North Carolina Nursery & Landscape Association

Bayer Advanced, LLC
Pender Nursery

A. E. Finley Foundation, Inc.
North Carolina Farm Bureau Federation

Dave and Cyndy Allison
Bell Family Foundation
Dottie and Bill Burns
Century Framing, Ltd.
Linda and Rufus Edmisten
Hawksridge Farms, Inc.
Hoffman Nursery, Inc.
Georgina and Dennis Werner
Worthington Farms

Ted and Linda Bilderback
Bland Landscaping
Garland C. Norris Company
Tom Gilmore & Gilmore Plant and Bulb Co.
Jerry and Nina Jackson
Julia Kornegay
LanArc, Inc.
Robert Lyons
Outfall Farms
Pittsboro Place Partners, LLC
Anne M. Porter
RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment)
Sampson Nursery, Inc.
Richard and Jere Stevens
Kathleen and Walt Thompson
Wyatt-Quarles Seed Company
Rosemary and Smedes York

Special Gifts
Catering Works
Chris Cammarene-Wessel
The Fresh Market (Falls of Neuse Rd.)
Harris Wholesale, Inc.
Pennington Seed Co.       
Sylvia Redwine
Southern String Band
Walt Thompson
Wakefield Nursery & Landscaping, Inc.
Willowtree Landscaping   
Wine Merchant & Kurt Saylor

If you are interested in becoming a corporate sponsor (reply form included), please contact Anne Porter at (919) 513-3463 or or visit link for more information.

Silent Auction

The 2009 Gala Auction was a great success, and YOU made it happen! Thanks to all the donors who not only gave these wonderful items and plants, but to all the Gala attendees who so generously bid on these items during the Gala or purchased items at the Gala Store on Monday. The auction raised $30,000 that goes directly to support the JCRA's daily operations and many fine programs.

Auction Item Donors (non plant items)

A listing of all the non plant auction item donors and the items themselves is available in PDF format.

Auction Item Donors (plants)

Appeldoorn Landscape Nursery (Bostic, NC)
Architectural Trees (Bahama, NC)
Cam Too Camellia Nursery (Greensboro, NC)
Camellia Forest Nursery (Chapel Hill, NC)
Casey Nursery (Goldsboro, NC)
Clark's Liner Farm (Oxford, NC)
The Conard-Pyle Co. (West Grove, PA)
Cooley's Nursery (Wagram, NC)
Gary's Nursery (New Bern, NC)
Greenleaf Nursery Co., NC Division (Tarboro, NC)
Hawksridge Farms (Hickory, NC)
Hefner's Nursery (Conover, NC)
Hinnant's Nursery Landscaping (Angier, NC)
Hoffman Nursery (Rougemont, NC)
The Ivy Farm (Locustville, VA)
Klehm's Song Sparrow Farm and Nursery (Avalon, WI)
McCracken Nursery (Zebulon, NC)
Nurseries Caroliniana (North Augusta, SC)
Oakmont Nursery (Siler City, NC)
Old Courthouse Nursery and Mac Farms (Warsaw, NC)
Panther Creek Nursery (Willow Springs, NC)
Joel Parlier & Associates (Statesville, NC)
Paul J. Ciener Botanical Garden (Colfax, NC)
Pender Nursery (Garner, NC)
Piedmont Carolina Nursery (Colfax, NC)
Plant Delights Nursery (Raleigh, NC)
Plantworks Nursery (Rougemont, NC)
Shiloh Nursery (Harmony, NC)
Specialty Ornamentals (Watkinsville, GA)
Spring Meadow Nursery (Grand Haven, MI)
Tarheel Native Trees (Clayton, NC)
Taylor's Nursery (Raleigh, NC)
Tinga Nursery (Castle Hayne, NC)
The Unique Plant (Chapel Hill, NC)
Dennis Werner, NCSU (Raleigh, NC)
Brian Whipker, NCSU (Raleigh, NC)
Williford's Nursery (Wilson, NC)

Honorary Chairs
Rufus & Linda Edmisten

The Arboretum is so fortunate to have these passionate community citizens to support and lead this Gala. Linda is currently a member of the Raleigh City Planning Commission; a board member for the Preservation of North Carolina; and a member of the Blount Street Historic District Oversight Committee. She is the former president of Arts Together and the Wake County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Her fascinating publications include: Culture Town: Life in Raleigh’s African-American Neighborhoods, J.W. Willie York—His First Seventy-Five Years in Raleigh, and Early Raleigh Neighborhoods and Buildings. Rufus has served our state and community from Attorney General of North Carolina from 1974–1984 to Secretary of State from 1989–1996. With more than 30 years of public and private legal practice, Rufus has developed an extensive network of business and government contacts. And he uses these contacts, his talents, and his passion to make a real difference in this community. To name just a few of the organizations that he leads and supports—and in many cases actually founded: The North Carolina Capitol Foundation, Foundation for Good Business, Extra Special Super Kids Scholarship Program, Duke Kids Klassic Golf Tournament, and many, many more! Rufus is also a passionate gardener. He and Linda live in a 1922 Raleigh historic landmark house, and he religiously cultivates their extensive 1920s-era gardens. It is indeed an privilege to recognize Linda and Rufus as the 2009 Gala in the Garden. We sincerely appreciate their leadership and support!

Event Chairs
Cyndy Allison
Tori Callanan

To say that this Mother and Daughter team is a "dynamic duo" is an understatement. From Tori’s original design for the invitations to Cyndy’s magical decorations, they have given us a truly “enchanting” Gala this year. Cyndy's career as a landscape designer started right here in the Department of Horticulture Science at NC State. And after raising five children, she put her training and inspiration to work when she started Willow Tree Landscaping 15 years ago.

Cyndy has received considerable acclaim including: North Carolina Nursery and Landscape Aassociation’s Grand Award, the "Outstanding Garden Design" in the 2008 Parade of Homes, and the Best in Show at the Southern Ideal Home Show (multiple times), just to name a few! Cyndy also has a great passion for community service, as well. Two of those passions include the support of this Arboretum and her extensive research on Elizabeth Lawrence, the first woman to graduate from NC State in landscape architecture. She is also a member of Rufus Edmisten’s Extra Special Super Kids Scholarship Program.

The second member of this dynamic duo, Cyndy's daughter, is Tori. Tori is also an NC State graduate with a B.S. in textiles technology and a fashion design certificate from California State University. Tori has served as vice president of Willow Tree Landscaping for the last ten years. Like her mother, she is a very savvy business woman and just recently took her first business public. Tori's community service in her hometown of Love Valley, North Carolina, is already legendary. She has served on the town council for four years and she is currently mayor pro-temp.

Cyndy and Tori are passionate about their businesses, their communities and the Arboretum, and we are very grateful for their vision and leadership of the 2009 Gala in the Garden.

Event Committee
Jill Adams
Cyndy Allison
Jayme Bednarczyk
Ted Bilderback
John Buettner
Tori Callanan
Kathy Deal
Rufus & Linda Edmisten
Carol Fishman
Judi Grainger
Larry Handcock
Barbara Kennedy
Charlie Kidder
Anita Kuehne
Marjorie O'Keeffe
Anne Porter
Chris Wessel
Jackie Wynne
Helen Yoest

The Gala in the Garden is hosted by The North Carolina Agricultural Foundation, Inc.

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