Ari Novy, PhD
President & CEO
Happy New Year!
I think most of us are glad to turn the page on 2020 and look forward to a safe and plant-filled 2021.
But before we fix our gaze on the future, I’d like to take a minute to thank you all for supporting San Diego Botanic Garden in 2020. This has been a tough year for any business in the service industry. Our Garden is a museum of living plants, a community oasis and a tourist destination. Like other tourism related operations, we had a hard time last year suffering through closures and an inability to mount our usual programming. But you all supported us and we are forever grateful.
Our members stayed members and patiently waited until we were allowed to open the Garden and all of our children’s gardens. Our donors dug deep, providing over $1 million of philanthropic support between April and December. Our volunteers adapted to new protocols and priorities, helping us welcome visitors and keep the Garden beautiful. And our visitors came from all over Southern California to learn about plants and bask in the beauty of the Garden.
I also want to acknowledge our partners in government, including the City of Encinitas, the County of San Diego and the State of California. Working with our government partners, we have continued critical projects to save rare plants from extinction and upgrade our facilities for state of the art plant conservation science.
Thanks to the amazing support we receive from every corner of the community, we step into 2021 confident that we will be stronger than ever, working to heal the environment and enrich the lives of our visitors.
There is so much to do at the Garden over the winter. Due to popular demand, we are continuing our holiday light show, Botanic Wonderland, into January. The Garden at night is absolutely spectacular and completely safe for the whole family. We are also continuing our socially distanced yoga in the Garden, which is the most amazing opportunity to connect with nature and yourself.
And winter is my favorite month to walk around the Garden. The rain we got last month has woken up the native plants. Our amazing Shaw’s agaves are making 12 foot flowering stalks that are attracting all kinds of pollinators. The Garden is a cacophony of life that refreshes and relaxes all who visit.
I look forward to seeing you in the Garden and wish you a great 2021!
Ari Novy, PhD
President and CEO