Upperville, VA (May 23, 2018) – More than 350 guests gathered on Sunday, May 20th in Upperville to celebrate the Land Trust of Virginia’s (LTV) ongoing conservation efforts in the Commonwealth. The 20th annual Garden Party was hosted by Mrs. Rose Marie Bogley at her historic estate, “Peace and Plenty” at Bollingbrook. The event was attended by an array of supporters – easement donors, artists, conservation professionals, business sponsors, and others who share a passion for land conservation in Virginia. In addition to being a celebration, LTV’s annual Garden Party serves as the non-profit’s principal fundraiser for the year.
The Land Trust of Virginia broke all records for attendance and funds raised at this year’s annual Garden Party. “The huge success of this year’s event will enable us to do more of what we do … conserve land,” commented Sally Price. “We are so appreciative of the people who attended, who financially contributed as sponsors of the event, who donated auction items, who bid on auction items and who volunteered.”
The event featured a silent auction, awards ceremony, and wet paint auction, Painting for Preservation, in which accomplished local artists created works of art based on the gardens and scenes around “Peace & Plenty.” The beautiful paintings were then auctioned off at the end of the event.
The sky cleared and the sun shined on Rose Marie Bogley’s beautiful property. The view over the Piedmont was breathtaking. The food, catered by Pampa’s Fox was unique and delicious. Slater Run provided the wonderful wine and Old Bust Head the beer, both perfect for the hot day. Mrs. Bogley and Barbara Sharp did the spectacular flowers and Alex Thomas turned out great photos of the event. Everyone enjoyed the living statue, which stood among Mrs. Bogley’s ornate Greek statues around her pool.
Each year, the Garden Party also serves as an opportunity to recognize people who have played an integral role in helping LTV carry out its mission. Chris Dematatis, LTV’s Chairman of the Board, presented three awards. The first, Steward of the Year, was awarded to Catharine W. Tucker, a life-long conservationist and environmental educator who placed her 70-acre property in Hanover County under easement in 2011. She continues to actively steward her property and use it as a classroom to teach various groups, including students in the Basic Master Natural Class of her local Riverine Chapter.
The second award, Landowner of the Year, was awarded to Michael A. Smith, who worked with LTV in 2017 to put an easement on his 350-acre Atoka Farm, which contains 99 acres of the core battlefield area of the Battle of Upperville. Prior to the easement, the property had the potential to be divided into 20 parcels. Not only did Mike conserve the battlefield on Atoka Farm but he also generously agreed to cover the County’s costs to put Upperville Park, another battlefield, into easement.
The third and final award of the afternoon, Conservationist of the Year for Leadership and Lifetime Achievement, went to Jacqueline B. Mars. Mrs. Mars was formerly the vice president of Mars Candy and is well-known in our region for her generous philanthropy. The Land Trust of Virginia had the pleasure of working with Mrs. Mars in 2017 to protect Meredyth Farm, her 210-acre property in Fauquier County. Furthermore, Mrs. Mars has been a strong and consistent supporter of LTV and conservation across Virginia.
The Land Trust of Virginia would like to sincerely thank all the individual and business sponsors, silent auction item donors, artists, and volunteers who made the event a success. Additionally, LTV would like to thank the gracious hostess for the event, Mrs. Rose Marie Bogley, for providing the perfect backdrop for a celebration of conservation. Additional photos from the event can be viewed here.
The Land Trust of Virginia is a private land trust that partners with landowners who voluntarily protect and preserve properties with significant scenic, ecological and historic value. LTV holds 162 easements protecting a total of 17,727 acres across 14 counties in Virginia.