“San Francisco Botanical Garden brought me the joy of learning about the natural world, and all the amazing plants in it. Each visit teaches me something new. As a docent, I love being able to share that joy with others.”
Everybody's Garden, Every Day
Stephanie Linder, Executive Director
Dear Garden Members and Supporters,
On June 1, 2020, at 7:30am, the Garden gates swung open to welcome visitors after 11 long weeks of closure. Every day since then, the Garden has been filled with eager attendees, especially young families with children, grateful for a safe outdoor space to reconnect with nature. Since reopening, through September, we welcomed 155,000 visitors, 73% for free.
As 2020 comes to a close, I want to say a special thank you to everyone whose memberships and contributions have sustained us during these unprecedented times. To maintain the positive momentum, please consider making a generous year-end gift to ensure that everybody can enjoy the Garden.
The Garden continues to explore creative new ways to adapt programming, protocols, and services to protect the health of our essential staff and visitors. For example, by reimagining our youth engagement programs, we’ve attracted more families with young children—offering inspiring alternatives to closed schools and canceled field trips.
This has been the most difficult year many of us can remember. Yet I have been inspired by seeing staff, board, volunteers, members, and visitors adapting and rising to meet each challenge. Throughout the closure, the Garden’s horticultural team and curator continued to care for our precious plant collections. We had to make tough budget decisions, including reduced hours, staff layoffs, and cancelling our very popular Flower Piano series.
Throughout it all, what has moved me most is seeing the diversity among our Garden visitors these past several months as they discover this calming and restorative place. Given all that has happened, we are recommitting ourselves to ensuring fuller access to this vital community resource. One significant step has been joining the Museums for All program so that everyone receiving federal SNAP benefits can visit the Garden free of charge.
Please consider how you’d like to connect more deeply with the Garden in 2021. You may wish to donate, volunteer, sponsor our youth programs, bring neighbors and friends for a walk, or host a special event. We’re grateful for your friendship, your ideas, and your enthusiasm. I invite your active participation to help keep San Francisco Botanical Garden available to everybody, every day.
With deep gratitude,