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  • Gala Raises More Than $300,000 for Arboretum and Japanese Garden!

Thanks to everyone who tuned into our Spring Forward! gala on Thursday, March 4. The evening was a tremendous success, grossing more than $300,000 in support of the Arboretum and Seattle Japanese Garden.

If you didn’t get a chance to join us, you can watch the recording on YouTube. It begins with a slideshow; the livestream program starts about 30 minutes into the video.

The livestream began with a land acknowledgement by recently retired UW Botanic Gardens Director Fred Hoyt and a wonderful performance by Native American violinist Swil Kanim.

PHOTO: Still image of Swil Kanim performing with a backdrop of the Arboretum’s Sequoia Grove.

The audience then enjoyed a video tour of the Arboretum and Japanese Garden—and their core programs—led by landscape architect and Foundation board member Jason Morse. Ciscoe Morris made a lively cameo, Dan Hinkley shared memories in a beautiful video about Azalea Way set to music by local composer Paul Chihara, and UW researcher Kathy Wolf spoke about the many health benefits of spending time in nature.

Studio host King 5’s Angela Poe Russell did a fabulous job emceeing the live program, with help from Jason and Foundation Director Jane Stonecipher.

Some auction highlights: Sixty-five donors contributed to the launch of the Fred Hoyt Botanical Exploration Fund, which will bring more rare and unusual plants into the Arboretum collection, and Jane saw her special family-recipe pound cake sell for $1,500! The winning bid for the Paul Chihara package—which includes a signed copy of the score of his new chamber work, scheduled to be performed at the Seattle Japanese Garden Party in August—was $10,000!

PHOTO: Still image of our “Raise-The-Paddle” thermometer during Spring Forward!

Still time to donate: If you didn’t have a chance to donate to the gala, please make a gift to the Arboretum on our website today! Or text “4Nature” to 44321.

Thank You!

Thanks to everyone who made Spring Forward! such a success: our sponsors, auction donors, video participants, photographers, and studio hosts, plus our production team at Seattle Lives. A special shout out to event co-chairs Shaun Corry and Bill McGee and to event committee members Joan Affleck-Smith and Carol Hoerster. Most of all, thanks to you—our amazing supporters—for helping sustain and enhance this beloved green space and plant collection!

Wine Auction: April 19 to 22

Due to a recent change in state licensing rules regarding online auctions, we had to postpone the wine component of the Spring Forward! auction. It will now take place as a separate, mini online event from April 19 to 22. Our apologies for any inconvenience! Stay tuned for updates.