Wednesday, September 30, 2020

President's Message - October 2020

Dear Rose Friends,

I hope we and the roses will soon be enjoying more temperate weather and beautiful blooms. As you probably know, the national convention scheduled for Colorado was cancelled, but meetings for the ARS Board and membership were held on line. I will mention some of the highlights. President Bob Martin and the Executive Board have done a significant amount of work to deal with challenges of the pandemic and to update how the ARS operates. The rules for rose show judging in horticulture, arrangements, and photography have been changed dramatically. The aim is to encourage participation in rose shows and photography competition by doing away with many of the rather picky rules resulting in penalties and disqualifications. New “Guidelines for Judging” will be published to reflect these changes and will be incorporated in local show schedules.

Another change is reducing the number of Regional Directors from 10 to 4. Income for ARS has declined due to the necessity to close the Rose Garden in Shreveport for several months. However, a CARES forgivable loan was obtained which has helped considerably. Plans are moving ahead for Christmas in Roseland, a significant fundraiser. The photos Marilyn Wellan presented with her report as chairman of the garden restoration show that the roses are blooming and the gardens are thriving.

You can check out President Martin’s report to the Executive Board and see a video of the Membership Meeting at rose.org, under Resources and then Board Materials. As they say, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Unfortunately, Florida as a whole and our area are not doing very well in regard to the Coronavirus pandemic. I doubt we will be able to meet before December at the earliest.

I would appreciate hearing from members about what conditions would make you feel comfortable to meet. Meanwhile, take care of yourselves, and stay safe. I have more masks made of n95 fabric which protects wearers as well as others. I would be happy to send you some. Although they aren’t as attractive as ones made from interesting fabrics, they work well and can be washed. We keep ours on the dashboard of the car where they can bake in the sun when we are not wearing them.

Yours in Roses,
Jean Giesel, President

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