It is a wonderfully satisfying feeling, after months of planning, to see everything come together and to see over 200 guests enjoying the day. The Westlake Garden Club can be very proud about putting on such a classy luncheon. The dining rooms at Lakewood CC, with the lovely view, and the lovely seasonal table arrangements, set the stage as everyone entered the room. The food was delicious and the service was outstanding. The staff was, without exception, so friendly and accommodating, and Alfredo – what can I say. When I met him on his third day with Lakewood CC, my comfort level rose significantly. He is the new Food and Beverage Manager who just started working there a few days before our event. Club President, Regina McCarthy, welcomed everyone and talked about the Club’s community involvement over this past year. She introduced Westlake Mayor Dennis M. Clough, who talked about the City of Westlake and thanked several people and the garden club for involvement with various city-wide programs. After lunch, guest speaker Michael Heaton talked about his daughter who is involved in the new concept of Permaculture, or Permanent Agriculture, which is the philosophy of working with rather than against nature to create a sustainable system. She lives and works in California but has also travelled to Peru to study. In preparation for his speech, Michael’s daughter had given him names of books to reference, so he was educated on the subject. He inserted bits of his own style of humor to entertain luncheon guests. Michael also sold copies of his book Truth and Justice for Fun and Profit before and after lunch, and donated one for a door prize. This year we had 36 baskets in the Chinese Raffle and 16 items on the silent auction. Thanks to the many businesses who donated gift certificates, services and items, we were able to add many to raffle baskets to increase the value, and there were some left over for door prizes. All proceeds from the luncheon are used to support educational and civic programs in the community. This is the one fundraiser the garden club has every year and we appreciate support from everyone who attends. Those who were not able to attend the luncheon missed a very enjoyable event. Now comes the challenge – how to we top this next year?