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From the Executive Director

Dear Friends,

Don't miss this annual local favorite event, The Lunar New Year Flower Market!

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My favorite time of year in many respects is January, after the holiday hoopla has subsided and we have at least partially recovered. Then is when I want to spend time with people I either didn't see during the holidays or, if I did see them, I was with so many other people that the interaction was too fleeting to be satisfactory. And it's mostly time-out for gardening while the rains soak in and the days gradually lengthen.

But by the end of January I'm ready for another foray into a public celebration. And that's one reason I have become so fond of Lunar New Year. There were no Lunar New Year celebrations in my Midwestern home town, and I first found this celebration interesting and exotic. As I came to understand it better -- the depth of tradition, especially around honoring family ties and preparing for the renewal of the seasons -- the celebration resonated much more deeply.

I'd like to invite you to join us for our 10th annual Lunar New Year Flower Market held here at the Botanical Garden on Saturday January 24th. The actual new year is on the following Monday the 26th, but we have begun a tradition of supporting the true new year by providing essential flowers for homes in which the family celebrations take place. Quince blossoms, red azaleas and other spring bloomers, plus the Buddha's Hand Citrus and other dwarf and fruit-covered citrus trees will be available as well. And food! I forgot to mention food.

This is a great celebration for the whole family. We will have the Lion Dance Troup, Vietnamese dancers, aspiring actors and actresses from the Alice Fong Yu school, and story time for children and families in the Horticultural Library. Bilingual self-guided tours of the Asian plants in the Botanical Garden will also be available. Admission is free, and while it's always an active and fun afternoon, it's much more mellow than some of the giant celebrations downtown.

I hope you will join us for a beautiful celebratory day. Rain or shine, it's all indoors so getting wet is not an option! I look forward to seeing you on the 24th of January. Meantime, enjoy the long evenings and quiet days.

With all best wishes for a healthy and prosperous new year,


Michael McKechnie
Executive Director, San Francisco Botanical Garden Society


Back to January 2009 newsletter >>