I want to give everyone in the Kusamura Bonsai Club an update on what the Board of Directors, officers and committee chairs are doing as we adjust to the crisis that has forced an indefinite halt to our planned meetings and other events.
Sadly, this crisis has hit us when we were planning our 60th consecutive annual bonsai exhibit - an achievement we were all looking forward to celebrating as a club. That exhibit has been cancelled and most likely will not take place at all in 2020.
However, we are developing an alternative, which while it doesn't offer the kind of camaraderie of setting up and running the show, will give us the opportunity to share our love of bonsai with each other and with the public. In fact, it will allow us to reach an audience that potentially includes the whole world.
Using the deep technical and artistic resources of various club members, we are planning a virtual exhibit of our bonsai. The initial phase of this will be a photographic "essay" of heritage trees - those trees that have a long association with the club. Many members have trees in this category along with their history. Charlene Fischer is leading the effort to collect images of these trees along with their stories. These will be put into a video format for posting on our existing YouTube channel. If you've never seen it, simply Google "Kusamura Bonsai YouTube" and you should get the link. There are three videos currently on the channel, thanks to Dave Curbow.
A second initiative we have started is to hold monthly meetings online using video conferencing software. Our first meeting will be on April 17th and will feature our own Michael Greenstein on oaks. Michael has his presentation ready and we will send out the details of how to tune in very soon. The May meeting will feature the debut of our show video on heritage trees and possibly other content. Other meeting topics will be forthcoming.
We will continue to explore ways to share our bonsai journeys with each other as we take the necessary steps to ensure the safety of ourselves and our communities. As maddening as technology can sometimes be, it also gives us the tools to feel connected even though we must remain physically separated. Watch your email for invitations to join these opportunities as they are created
As always, your feedback, insights and suggestions are welcomed, now more than ever.