The spectacular red rocks of the Garden of the Gods provided a fitting backdrop for a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Garden of the Gods Foundation.
The Summer of Celebration was kicked off with a gala dinner and live auction May 6 at the Garden of the Gods Club hosted by Lyda Hill, who built the impressive Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center facing the park.
“We are proud to report that in its first 10 years, the foundation has funded projects in the Garden totaling $858,726,” Miss Hill told guests at the sold-out event.
The Foundation was created to receive funding from the Visitors Center and fund projects in the Garden that were requested by the Parks Department, she said. It was intended that the foundation would receive gifts from any donor wishing to better the Garden.
There have been numerous contributions, many in memory of photographer Rich Buzzelli, whose photos celebrated the beautiful park, and $60,000 in memory of Lyda’s father, the late Al Hill Sr., which established the endowment fund.
“Those who cannot make significant gifts may think that people are generous because they are rich,” she said. “Those who can give know that the reverse is true-people are rich because they are generous.”
“You can walk through the Garden at any time of any day and enjoy the gift you have made tonight,” she said.
Kathleen Luby of San Antonio, who underwrote the event, greeted guests as they entered the Garden Room, decorated with specimen minerals from Miss Hill’s collection.
For information about Summer of Celebration events, contact the Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center at 634-6666.
Among those enjoying the evening were committee chairwoman Mary Ellen McNally and her husband Dr. Michael McNally; Foundation President Nancy Lewis; mistress of ceremonies Lisa Lyden of KOAA 5/30; Colorado College President Richard Celeste and Jacqueline Lundquist; Pat and Tom Cone; Elizabeth and Warren Youngquist; Bert Hayes-Davis (representing Summer of Celebration corporate sponsor J.P. Morgan); David and Karen Whitaker; Garden of the Gods Club manager Leslie Carson; Kathy Loo; Kevin Patterson and Dr. Kathie Leppard; and Sharon and Don Hare.