Fundraiser helps SEEDS blossum

Basking in summer-like temperatures, the 10th annual SEEDS fundraiser held on Saturday Oct. 10 lived up to its theme “Splendor at Descanso.” A cold, rainy week turned gloriously warm for the evening event on the Main Lawn at Descanso Gardens. More than 300 guests enjoyed food, drink, dancing and conversation under the autumn-tinged Descanso oaks.

In all, $150,000 was raised for Descanso’s educational programs that serve school children, youth and developmentally disabled students. SEEDS is an acronym for Supporting Education and Excellence at Descanso. Since its inception in 2001, SEEDS has raised more than $1.5 million for educational programs in the Gardens.

In the last 10 years, more than 150,000 students, many from disadvantaged backgrounds, have taken part in Descanso Gardens’ educational programs. “For many of these children, a trip to Descanso Gardens is their first and sometimes most important introduction to the natural world,” said David R. Brown, executive director.

The highlight of the evening was the live auction. Seven items, including vacation trips, a 3-D HDTV, and two separate dinner packages in Descanso’s historic Boddy House catered by Patina Group, were up for bid.

As in years past, Fritz Coleman, KNBC Channel Four weathercaster, served as SEEDS guest auctioneer.

Sharon Mintie Miller of La Cañada Flintridge served as chairperson of this year’s SEEDS. The event paid tribute to the past chairs, including Amy Lamb (2001), Elizabeth Fitzpatrick and Linda O’Callaghan (co-chairs 2002), Lucia Logan (2003), Julie Scholler (2004), Lisa S. Cochran (2005), Pam Thyret (2006), Anne Trujillo and McNally Sagal (co-chairs 2007), Martha Wheeler Bowman (2008), and Faye Therrien (2009).