Societies

The Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation offers two societies for those who have made significant contributions to the Foundation. Members qualify for permanent recognition at the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park and are invited to the annual Donor Recognition event.

Bonsai Society

Those who have cumulative monetary gifts and/or pledges in estate plans of $100,000 or more to the Foundation are members of the Bonsai Society.

To qualify for membership with an estate gift pledge, donors must submit a copy of the gift provision in their estate plan, or have other written documentation, verifying that the $100,000 minimum has been met.

If a donor's plan calls for a percentage of the estate's remainder, and the amount will meet or exceed $100,000, a written statement from the donor's estate planner, tax consultant, or attorney would meet the requirement for membership.

Members
  • Kenneth Bandstra
  • Karl F. & Patricia J. Betz
  • John D. & Marian F. Bouwer
  • Dr. David G. Dvorak & Ms. Karol J. Peterson
  • Eileen DeVries Family Foundation
  • Fred Fichter
  • Dirk Hoffius
  • Joan Hoffman
  • Earl & Donnalee Holton
  • Sarah & Michael Julien
  • Thomas Peter Kapteyn
  • C. Thomas & Evelyn Kapteyn
  • Mary Ann Keeler
  • Ray Loeschner
  • David R. & Mary Ann Mapes
  • Edward & Diana Marsilje
  • Hank & Liesel Meijer
  • Lena Meijer
  • Thomas P. Merchant & Glen W. Johnson
  • In Memory of Don & Dorothy Hoyt Pingree
  • John & Gail Nowak
  • Richard & Valerie Peacock
  • June Prein
  • Milt & Barbara Rohwer
  • Bernie & Rose Rosenthal
  • Peter* & Joan Secchia
  • Lynn & John P. Vinkemulder

Perennial Society

Those who have a cumulative monetary gifts and/or pledges in estate plans of $10,000 or more to the Foundation are members of the Perennial Society.

To qualify for membership with an estate gift pledge, donors must submit a copy of the gift provision in their estate plan, or have other written documentation, verifying that the $10,000 minimum has been met.

If a donor's plan calls for a percentage of the estate's remainder, and the amount will meet or exceed $10,000, a written statement from the donor's estate planner, tax consultant, or attorney would meet the requirement for membership.

Members
  • Gasper J. Amodeo*
  • John G. & Janet Baab
  • Jean W. Barkin
  • Nancy Batts
  • Charles & Debbie Beckwith
  • Ken Betz & Pat Brewer
  • Charles & Patricia Bloom
  • John Bodary
  • William & Laurie Boer
  • Fred A. Bogaert
  • Vern & Norma Boss
  • Paul & Cathy Boyer
  • Molly Bradshaw
  • Daniel & Barbara Braun
  • Sheri Brolick
  • Jim & Donna Brooks
  • Joan Buchanan
  • Jesse & Gia Budrick
  • Robert & Sandra Burnham
  • Kent Garden Club
  • The Works Fund at The Chicago Community Foundation
  • Robert & Susan Conklin
  • Fred Cooper
  • Glen B. Corp
  • Gilbert R. & Patricia K. Davis
  • Robert & Lois De Boer
  • Daniel & Pamella DeVos
  • James & Judy DeLapa
  • Abby J. & Milo R. DeVries
  • Elizabeth Tinney Donley
  • Chris & Deanna Eckert
  • Jon C. Ferguson
  • Gregory & Kathy Forzley
  • Nancy McKenzie Frost
  • Henry G. Fuhs
  • Gillett Family Foundation Trust
  • John & Nancy Gordon
  • William & Suzanne Green
  • Terry & Margie Griffith
  • Sid & Elizabeth Harkema
  • John & Gwen Hibbard
  • Dirk & June Hoffius
  • Robert Hooker
  • David S. & Leslie A. Hooker
  • Marilyn Hunting
  • Mike & Sue Jandernoa
  • Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids
  • Charles R. & Linda H. Johnson
  • Donald & Bunny Johnson
  • Jeanne M. Kapenga
  • James & Amy Keane
  • James Keane, Jr.
  • Donald E. & Ann Kelley
  • John & Nancy Kennedy
  • Sue Kloostra
  • Wayne & Vicki Korson
  • Douglas & Raymonde Kramlich
  • Ping & Tim Liang
  • Kathleen Maine
  • M. Lynn Martin
  • Barbara Mayo-Johnson
  • Mac & Pinky McPherson
  • Linda & David Mehney
  • Deborah Meijer
  • Jack H. Miller
  • Daniel & Kathleen Molhoek
  • Richard G. & Maureen J. Morrison
  • John W. Morrison
  • Jeanenne Morton
  • Katharine L. Neff
  • Arlene Obetts
  • Jeff & Peg Padnos
  • Todd & Jan Polavin
  • James & Marie Preston
  • Patrick Pullen & Linda Chamberlain
  • David & Kathleen Ray
  • Robert S.* & Phyllis G. Rood
  • Shirley J. Roskam
  • Alwyn & Chris Rougier-Chapman
  • Mark Sherwood & Saralyn Coupe
  • Budge & Marilyn Sherwood
  • Hilary F. Snell
  • John & Judy Spoelhof Foundation
  • Jesse & Becky Stewart
  • Helen & Fred Tallmadge
  • The Tassell-Wisner-Bottrall Foundation
  • Marilyn Titche
  • George & Kerstin Trowbridge
  • Frank & Sharon Van Haven
  • Connie Wenger
  • John L. & Carroll D. Wiener
  • Gwen Bolt & Dorothy Williamson
  • Stephen & Cheryl Wonch

Join

If you would like to become a member of the society, please contact Susanne Veeneman, Executive Director of the Foundation, at 616-791-3901 or susanne.veeneman@meijer.com.

2021 Annual Donor Event

Approximately 100 members of the Foundation’s Bonsai and Perennial Societies enjoyed an open house followed by a program during which new members were introduced. The Garden Pavilion was opened to allow a sneak peek ahead of its formal public debut in the fall of 2021.

"I think everyone here tonight would agree that the Foundation's support was critical to the Gardens over the last couple years," said Saralyn Coupe, Foundation President.

"Even as we emerge from a pandemic, as well as a building project that disrupted some operations, the Gardens has emerged stronger than ever."

Coupe’s formal remarks at the event – as well as those offered by David Hooker, President and CEO of Meijer Gardens – underscored the importance of growing to accommodate an annually increasing number of visitors to the Gardens. Speculation is that 1 million visitors will soon pass through the portals yearly, a staggering increase.

“This is a celebration of all of you,” Coupe told the evening’s guests. “What you have helped to establish here is a lifeline linking the Gardens' past and securing its future.”

“As I look around, I reflect on the wonderful growth and spirit of this place,” said Dr. Jeanne M. Kapenga. “I’m especially grateful for the ways in which the Meijer family placed an emphasis on both art and horticulture, bringing a balance to our lives and providing so many teachable moments for us all.”

Indeed, the attendees were awestruck by both the new and larger Welcome Center, but also the architecture design, and the stunning Sculpture within the Garden Pavilion, Jaume Plensa’s Utopia, which had not yet been opened to the members and visitors.

Joan Buchanan characterized “the expansion as incredible,” and predicted that “Meijer Gardens may someday surpass Dearborn’s Greenfield Village as the No. 1 attraction within Michigan,” adding, “I’m so happy to be a member and donor.”

Like many others, Foundation Board Member, Amy Keane reminisced: “I’ve been coming to and following the progress of this beautiful place since my dad, Ray Loeschner, started raising money for the Foundation and the Gardens back in 1993 before the Gardens was open. I’ve always appreciated the story, the journey, and proud to now be a part of its Foundation.” Michael and Sarah Julien expressed amazement at Meijer Gardens’ constant state of growth. “Over the course of more than 25 years now, it keeps growing with annual expansions and sculpture acquisitions.” added Sarah: “It’s not a visit-once place, but an I-want-to-go-back-again place. There’s something always new, always changing, always fresh. That’s become the norm.”

Some in attendance focused on how Meijer Gardens and the Foundation have become personal touchstones in their lives. Jon C. Ferguson noted that an endowment he set up in memory and tribute to his late wife – The Sallie Peterson Ferguson Fund – finances the admission and more for underprivileged children. “A very special woman,” Jon said softly of his educator wife, who died in 2013.

“And it’s such an honor to lift up her legacy through this place, which will continue in perpetuity. In a sense, she’s continuing to work with children even now.”

Ping Liang praised the Foundation for “its stewardship which both finances present-day operations, but more importantly sustains the Gardens into the future,” she noted. “David Hooker especially has overseen efforts every step of the way, and in such an intentional way.”

Ping’s husband Tim concurred, adding “I’m totally impressed by the vision and the leadership which has made Meijer Gardens an international destination.

Hooker concluded by noting that letters from visitors “highlight the importance of what we all do – donors, staff, volunteers, all of us. We bring joy to all of our visitors and what a privilege that is."