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The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens is committed to engage and inspire through the arts, gardens and education. A permanent collection of nearly 5,000 works of art on a riverfront campus offers more than 95,000 annual visitors a truly unique experience on the First Coast. Nationally recognized education programs serve adults and children of all abilities.

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Garden Week Recap



2011 Garden Week at The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens was a huge success! Over 2,500 guests enjoyed our lectures by Nancy Clarke and Bev Church, floral displays arranged by local designers, a Garden Concert by Noel Freidline, the Fashion Show by Linda Cunningham, hands on workshops and Family Day.

Our Garden Week chairs Judy D’Antignac and Anne Meyer put together a week of events that had something for everyone.  Dee Loop created all of the beautiful floral arrangements for our luncheons and designed the paver wall in the Lobby.  The flowers in our Lobby display were generously donated by Anita’s Garden Shop.

Arrangement by Benita Boyd & Sonya Petit

The Petals to Paint event was our Monday night kick-off.  Our guests enjoyed a cocktail party in the Upper Gardens with live music and floral interpretations of our collection by local floral designers.  The floral displays were artistic interpretations of art in our permanent collection.  The displays remained in our galleries all week for our guests to enjoy.  Our floral arrangers were Benita Boyd and Sonja Petit, Mary Lew Esdale of Distinctive Designs, Ann Evans of Cypress, Karen McCombs, Sally Simpson, Arlene Swindell of Arlene’s Designs and Bill Wilson of Wilson Limited.  Each designer showcased their personal and distinctive style to make their arrangements unique and special.

Nancy Clarke Luncheon

Our Tuesday lecture and lunch was with retired White House Chief Floral Designer Nancy Clarke.  Nancy began working at the White House as a volunteer 30 years ago and has worked closely with every President and First Lady for the past 30 years to make the White House look its best and welcome visitors and dignitaries.  Our guests enjoyed viewing a display of some of the arrangements Mrs. Clarke created for State Dinners and special occasions both at the White House and Camp David.  In keeping with her gracious style, our guests enjoyed a selection of tea sandwiches and tea for our luncheon.

Bev Church Book Signing

Bev Church was our Wednesday speaker, sponsored by Carolyn Marsh Lindsay and Mr. and Mrs. Frank Watson.  To celebrate her New Orleans heritage, our guests enjoyed  beignets, quiche Lorraine with Chicory Coffee.   Bev had several tables decorated with fun and exciting displays showcasing her fun, upbeat style.  Along with a presentation of parties Bev has created for friends and clients, she shared many amusinganecdotes about how she gets her ideas and brings them to life.

Fashion Show Models in Evening Gowns

On Thursday, our guests were treated to a wonderful fashion show by Linda Cunningham.  Our Fashion Show and Luncheon was sponsored by Monica and Bob Jacoby.  Linda’s couture line evokes femininity and sophistication with a tasteful touch of whimsy.   Along with our Fashion Show, we held a Chance Drawing of a necklace donated by jeweler Lillian Ostergard.  Linda’s collection was modeled by Hilton Ball, Joann Cellar, Alice Coughlin, Diane Diffenderfer, Susan Keller, Laura Magevney, Hope McMath, Rochelle Proctor, Lena Rouleau and Ellie Zimmerman.  Our lovely models had a fun time on the runway wearing Linda’s collection to the delight of the audience and they wore the clothes beautifully!

Noel Freidline Concert in the Gardens

Our Friday night Garden Concert with The Noel FreidlineQuintet was a bit hit! Our sponsor for Friday night was CAPTRUST Financial Advisors, Inc. The weather was gorgeous and our guests enjoyed sitting in our gardens listening to the jazz stylings of local favorite Noel Freidline.  Several guests shared that Noel had played at their wedding reception.  The gardens were lit, the moon was full and our guests danced under the stars, it was a magical evening!

Plein Air Painting in the Gardens with Ellen Diamond

Saturday had something for everyone.  Evie Pankok, the Florida Yards and Neighborhoods Program Assistant in Duval County taught a class on Vermiculture.  Artist Ellen Diamond led a day of plein aire painting in our gardens.  For our younger artists, a class called “My Digital Garden” was offered for children ages 6 to 12.  In addition to our workshops, the museum hosted Free Family Day.  JAX ART HUNT hid some pictures in our gardens and Arbus Magazine posted stories and photos on their Facebook Page.  Our guests enjoyed live music and fun projects both inside the museum and outside in our lovely gardens.

Guests enjoying the Gardens

Garden Week is our sole fundraiser for our historic gardens.  The funds raised from Garden Week are dedicated to the restoration of our Olmsted Garden.  Without the generosity and support of our donors and sponsors, we could not host Garden Week at The Cummer.  We would like to thank our Garden Week sponsors and donors, along with everyone who attended Garden Week, for their generous support.  Together we are fulfilling Ninah Cummer’s dream of making The Cummer “a place of beauty and culture for all.”

Thank you to all of our wonderful Garden Week sponsors!

Agility Press, Inc.,  Mrs. C. Kirby Alexander,  American Hospice,  Mrs. William E. Arnold, Jr.,  Mr. and Mrs. Willis M. Ball III,  Sue Root Barker / Root Photography,  Brady S. Johnston Perpetual Charitable Trust,  CAPTRUST Financial Advisors, Inc.,  Mr. and Mrs. Edward P. Doherty,  Jennifer Duke,  Mrs. Robert Hinckley,,  Monica and Bob Jacoby,  Mrs. John B. Kent,  Carolyn Marsh Lindsay,  Mrs. Tom McKenzie, Jr.,  Mr. and Mrs. L. Craig Merritt,  Mr. and Mrs. Alex A. Meyer,  Omni Hotel Jacksonville,  Lillian Ostergard,  Mary and Jerry Pietan,  Scott-McRae Group | Duval Dealers,  Sight & Sound Productions, Inc.,  Studio Orange Design,  The Chef’s Garden,  The Florida Times-Union,  & Frank and Mary Watson.

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Director of Art Education

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