Of special significance this year was the opening of our new Amphitheater, made possible by the patronage of Martha Thuemmel, a former President of the Nature Center Board and continuing supporter. Martha and her late husband Bob donated the funds to construct the amphitheater; a plaque on the theater dedicates the building to one of their favorite flowering plants growing in the park, the Trailing Arbutus. This rare and fragrant plant is one of the first signs of spring in the Thumb of Michigan, often appearing before the snows of winter have melted away, and is dear to the hearts of many in the community.
Our Board President, Ed Raby, spoke at the dedication of the Amphitheater, giving voice to the sincere gratitude of the Board and Members for Martha's generosity in donating the funds that made the Amphitheater a reality, and allowed us to complete the extensive renovations needed inside the Visitors Center. The musical acts put the new stage and sound system to good use during the festival, and hundreds of visitors walked through the renovated lobby area, which was enlarged over the winter. The Lobby is a work in progress - please visit often this summer to see new displays!
Once again, we wish to thank Martha for her selfless dedication to the Nature Center and to her community.