Location: Vernon Senior Center / Municipal Bldg.
21 Church Street
Vernon, NJ 07462

The Golden Lunch Bunch Garden Club was started in 1995 by MG Madeleine Gil out of her love for gardening and interest in serving the community. It was recognized in 1999 as an approved activity of the Cooperation Extension Master Gardening Program. Madeleine Gil continued to provide this service to the Vernon senior community on her own until 2011, when several other Vernon residents became Master Gardeners and joined in her efforts.

Activities vary with the season. Warmer months find MGs bringing in specimens from their gardens for the seniors to identify. This leads to a show-and-tell session, where seniors provide stories or samples of their personal gardening achievements. In early summer seniors are given an opportunity to plant and take home a hanging basket of cherry tomatoes. In addition, tomatoes and various herbs are planted in the walled area directly outside the center.

A good portion of the two-hour session is spent engaging in a hands-on activity, which the MGs get to enjoy as well. Past craft projects have included making pumpkin vases, wreaths, pine cone bird feeders, milk carton bird feeders, pressed flower bookmarks, butterfly feeders and African violet cuttings. “Special events” included water color painting with professional artist Kathi Sojka, and bird identification with Kittatinny Valley State Park’s resource specialist Lynn Groves Lussier.