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Palma Sola Botanical Park delightful setting for a garden party

Sunday night’s Palma Sola Botanical Park Garden Party had the comfortable atmosphere of a dinner in someone’s home. Beautiful china, fresh flowers on the tables, good food and good company added up to a wonderful evening.

The personal touches that chairs Ina and Nick Baden gave the evening added a lot of the ambience.

Ina is known for her hospitality, and she used her own dishes to set more than 100 places. She also prepared the yellow rice and chicken and enlisted friends to prepare the rest of the menu, including an incredible dessert buffet.

The committee recruited Mother Nature as the decorations chair, and she did a magnificent job. The botanical park is one of the jewels in Manatee County, and the weather was perfect for dining on the lawn and the galleria building deck. The sunset provided a beautiful dinner show.

A dedicated corps of volunteers keeps the park running, and they did double duty to keep the party hopping as well.

Janice Fritzmeier organized many of the details from the silent auction to the registration. Tony and Betsy Ricci helped out with the auction while Janice’s daughter, Amy, joined her mother at the sign-in table.

JoAnne Ehrenreich oversees the plant nursery at the park and the beautiful hanging baskets in the silent auction were proof of her very green thumb. And board president Kelly Estill helped out with it all.

Among the familiar and new faces were Frank and Emily Buskirk, Jim and Linda Terry, Joe and Carole Sanders and Paul and Karen Newhall, with Paul’s mother, Sue.

Susan Wilcox, a Florida native, has lived in Bradenton for more than 20 years. She has been active in many local organizations as a volunteer or an employee.