Bridgetown club members flower as calendar girls
© Heather Killen
Ada Cheung and Rachel Edwards are members of the Bridgetown area Garden Club. Rachel is Ms. January and Ms. September in the group’s new ‘in the buff’ calendar that is selling like hotcakes.
By Heather Killen
The ladies of the Bridgetown Area Garden Club are really going with bare necessities for their new fundraiser.
The club has been meeting on and off since 1936, but this year they’ve gone back to basics for a community project. Nearly a dozen members have provided a self-portrait, posing mostly au naturel (one or two may be wearing mascara) for a 2014 calendar.
Like many beleaguered volunteer groups, not all the ladies were willing to bear yet another fundraising project, so some members appear twice. The ladies were very creative coming up with their photos, according to Ada Cheung.
Cheung says that initially her idea was to feature Bridgetown gentlemen riding their lawn tractors, but the plan eventually evolved into the ladies submitting photos in the same spirit as the now famous Rylstone and District Women’s Institute calendar.
“If you drive down Bridgetown any evening during the summer, you’ll see the guys out there on their tractors,” she said. “I wanted to do something fun and different to raise money, promote the club in a new way and maybe attract some new members.”
The ladies finally decided to pose themselves and had significant others help make the strategic arrangements to ensure each lady’s modesty. Ever eager to support a good cause, Bliss FitzRandolph was the first to put it out there as Ms. December and soon others followed.
Rachel Edwards (Ms. January and Ms. September) says that when Cheung first suggested the idea to the group, who are aged 37 through 74, it was hilarious.
“I laughed, I said ‘are you serious?’” she said. “I didn’t think you were serious. And then the reactions were funny. One lady brought in her picture and told us not to show anyone at the church.”
Last January, Edwards posed in the buff on her lawn tractor and then went out on a limb again in the fall, posing in Valley View Park. Every time a leaf rustled, she said she tried to scramble for cover.
The calendars priced at $15 have been selling like hotcakes at Home Hardware and The End of the Line Pub in Bridgetown.
“The response to this has been overwhelming,” says Cheung. “We don’t have many left, but if the demand is there we may print some more.”
Every summer the club works hard to brighten up the town’s flower planters. They hope to use the money they raise towards a community project.
Starting again in February, the club meets monthly at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday at the Anglican Church in Bridgetown. Anyone is welcome to come, however Cheung is quick to point out that clothes are mandatory for the meetings.
“We’re a garden club, not a group of naturalists,” she said.