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The Open House was the biggest ever!

This Open House was the biggest ever, even with half of Sunday’s event being rained out by the outer bands of Tropical Storm Colin.

It started on Saturday, with the refreshments being laid out:

As soon as we opened, there was an influx of people. It was overwhelming and exhilarating at the same time. We added a new member, Sally, to our team this year, and Judi’s mother, Lynn, took on the new and critical role of managing the back porch; that might have been the only way we were able to survive the rush. We had just shy of 100 visitors in four hours. Here are some pictures from Saturday; Sunday, when the insanity grew even more intense, is after these pictures:

Play “Find the Guests”:

Waiting to get into Butterfly House:

On Sunday we had cars coming down the street, and people getting out and coming up the driveway, even before we opened! That’s never happened before! We told everyone that we couldn’t open until 10:00 — we were still running around getting set up… which reminds me, here’s the refreshments table for Sunday:

…and a close-up of Sunday’s cake:

At 10:00 sharp Greg walked down to the street and waved to let everyone know that we were open. There were cars lined up on both sides of the street, both up and down the street. Did we mention it was crazy? People began pouring out of the cars, including a Girl Scout troop (some of the girls wearing their badge sashes) and their moms — we have no idea how they heard about us. Oh my gosh!

Unfortunately — and we mean very, very sadly unfortunately — it began to rain at noon. Everyone took cover and waited for it to blow over… but it didn’t. Around 1:00 we began to offer people umbrella assistance to make it out to their cars.

Despite the rain having cut Sunday’s time in half, we had about 150 guests over the entire Open House, from as far away as Volusia County to the north, and Fort Pierce to the south. We did double-count people who came on both Saturday and Sunday — and there were some. We saw a lot of old friends. First, it goes without saying, we have to recognize and thank Nancy and Bob, who have never missed an event, even though we never get to spend the time with them that they deserve. It’s loyalty like that that makes doing this worthwhile.

And we were thrilled to welcome Nellie D., and Barbara P. and her friends from the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, including a surprise visitor: Carol, who had helped Greg with an event at the refuge recently. Another pair of friends and regulars, Perry and Charmaine, came both days!

Without any more ado, here are pictures from Sunday, starting with some of the Girl Scouts:

On the porch:

This little girl was such a perfect model:

…and here’s why: Mom is taking her picture:

A few more guests:

Thank you everyone who came to see us! You are the ones who make it worthwhile.

— posted by Judi and Greg · · #

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