Tourism Cares for the Bonsai Garden

On a cold and rainy Saturday, members of Tourism Cares came to the Bonsai Garden and helped us sort wire and stain new display benches. It was such a treat working with folks from the tourism industry who flew in on Friday and spent their Saturday with us before flying out on Saturday night. Not only were they great workers, but they were very pleasant and energetic as well as interested in learning more about bonsai and the Garden.

We continue to be fortunate to have enthusiastic volunteers from the community participate in volunteer projects at the Garden. Our next big volunteer day is Earth Day on April 22. Several groups have already contacted us to volunteer, but there is always room for more. Just email us at bonsailakemerritt@gmail.com. For more information about Earth Day, visit Oakland’s Earth Day website.

We are indebted to members of Tourism Cares and other groups who volunteer in support of our Bonsai Garden.

Tourism Cares, a 501(c)3 nonprofit*, is the charitable community of the travel and tourism industry.  It unites the industry in three initiatives where, in addition to individual company efforts, it can make a greater difference by working together. Tourism Cares channels the philanthropic passion and commitment of the travel industry to protect and restore emerging or at-risk destinations we all care about, such as New Orleans after Katrina, Plimoth Plantation, the Los Angeles Waterfront near San Pedro, and most recently, Nepal. Through volunteering, grants, business connections and advocacy, it invests in high potential destinations where tourism can be an engine of prosperity and community pride.

Ryan Neil Demo Raised Funds for GRO

By George Haas 
BGLM Marketing Manager

Before the re-potting.

Ryan Neil performed a great re-styling and re-potting of the Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt’s Rocky Mountain Juniper (BGLM No. 401) at the Lake Merritt Sailboat Boathouse on Saturday, March 4, 2017.

Ryan’s demonstration was a special fundraising event in support of the Garden Revitalization Opportunity (GRO) project. BGLM is raising $100,000 to replace worn out display and seating benches, upgrade water systems, install new pathways, and more.

Ryan’s first appearance as a headliner was at the 2010 GSBF Convention in Santa Clara. The tree he styled was the same Rocky Mountain Juniper, which was placed in the auction and purchased by BGLM board member Andrea Burhoe. Subsequently, Andrea donated the bonsai to the BGLM. In 2012, at the Lakeside Park Garden Center, 666 Bellevue Ave., Oakland, Ryan did a first re-potting demonstration, placing the Rocky Mountain Juniper from a wooden crate into a old Chinese pot. For the period of 2010 to 2015, Ryan cared for the bonsai at his studio in Oregon, when it was moved to the Garden and placed on permanent display. Continue reading

GRO Fundraising Drive

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Volunteers joined together through our hard work and generous donations to create a one-of-a-kind living art museum of legacy and master bonsai that is supported totally by volunteers and donations. Now we need help once again to revitalize the Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt that is showing signs of its age and popularity. Please donate what you can to help us through the next phase of our journey together.
The Bonsai Garden has begun its GRO (Garden Revitalization Opportunity (GRO) project with funds from our reserves and a grant from the Golden State Bonsai Federation as well as contributions from individuals and clubs through out the area. We also received a grant from the Walter & Elise Haas Fund that will help take us to our $100,000 goal, but we need your help to reach our goal. Please contribute here online and come by to visit the Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt to see how your contribution will help keep this museum open free to the public.