Hagerstown Garden Club celebrates 80th year

December 15, 2011|By DAVE McMILLION |
  • Hannah Moylan, left, and Dorothy Waddy, both of Williamsport, look over a holiday floral arrangement at a reception at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts Atrium for the 80th anniversary of the Hagerstown Garden Club. The two have been members of the club for more than 20 years.
By Ric Dugan, Staff Photographer

Maintaining gardens at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts.

Establishing a fountain in Park Circle and working to control billboards on state highways.

Working to protect the Chesapeake Bay and raising money for the museum.

Those are examples of the work of the Hagerstown Garden Club, which celebrated a special milestone Thursday night at the museum.

Members of the garden club filed into the museum's Anne G. and Howard S. Kaylor Atrium to celebrate the club's 80th year as a federated garden club.

A federated club is part of a state group of garden clubs that work together on a variety of beautification and conservation projects, club President Maureen Sasse said.

Much of the club's work revolves around the art museum.

"The museum is our baby," Sasse said.

Apart from maintaining gardens outside the museum and creating flower arrangements for art shows there, the garden club does major fundraising for the museum, Sasse said.

One of the fundraisers is Art in Bloom, in which garden clubs from across the state do floral interpretations of selected works of art, Sasse said.

Art in Bloom raises money through a $30-per-person admittance fee, Sasse said.

The club celebrated its milestone with a two-hour cocktail party in the atrium. Sasse was expected to speak later about the club's work through the years.

Among those attending was Florence Graff, one of the longest serving members of the club.

Graff, 96, said she joined in the 1950s and remembers her time in the club "with great joy."

She talked about working to maintain the gardens around the museum through the years.

"I spent a lot of time on my knees at the museum," Graff said.

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