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Re: Gaining New Members

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: Re: Gaining New Members
  • From: Patricia Wenham <prw@televar.com>
  • Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 20:09:53 -0700 (MST)

Efford wrote:
> I thought those in local iris societies might be interested in our
> recent experience at the Ottawa Valley Rock Garden Society.
> Last summer, we elected a new executive with some difficulties as no one
> wants to take the jobs!  After some pleading, one young lady volunteered
> to take over publicity.  She is a new Vietnamese immigrant and appears
> highly educated but with limited English, so I was a little concerned
> about her role in publicity.  What I missed was her dogged
> determination.
> Our meetings are on Saturday afternoons once a month except in the
> summer.  She has arranged for the speakers to appear on the local radio
> station at 8.15 on the morning of their talk.  They are interviewed and
> the interviewer announces the meeting and invites people to attend.
> The result is that we are almost unable to cope with success.  Last
> meeting was a talk by one of our own members and usually we get far more
> visitors for outside speakers.  We  had 125 attendees, completely filled
> the room with standing at the back, added 29 new members at the meeting
> and more are arriving by mail so that we have now passed 200 members.
> The result is that we have had to purchase two more coffee urns, double
> the size of the room, etc. etc.
> Our publicity representative now plans to send announcements to all 32
> free newpapers in the area who have agreed to publicize the
> announcements and publish gardening articles from our newsletter!
> I mention this because the effort required to increase membership has
> been relatively small but quite focused.  As I become the Society Chair
> in June, my only concern is that I am not sure we, or I, can cope with
> the success she has generated!
> Some of your local iris societies may wish to copy these ideas.
> IanThank you for sharing this as I hope to get more people interested in 
iris in this area.  We have sandy soil, an early spring with gentle rain 
and some sun.  Next is a very warm summer and a short cool fall.  
Winters do not seem to be so severe that any of the rhizomes suffer a 
decline or death due to weather.  This area NEEDS iris!!  I have given 
many rhizomes away and intend to do some hybridizing when I retire in 2 
years so I hope to have someone who shares my enthusiasm for growing 
iris.  I have gained several ideas from your message.

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