Mar 26, 2014 Jason Emerson Uncategorized
The Friends of Lorenzo had a good year in 2013 and are looking ahead to 2014, particularly to the return of the Syracuse Symphony — now called Symphoria — and its free summer concert on the lawn of Lorenzo this July, it was announced at the Friends of Lorenzo annual meeting on March 18.
The Friends, created in 1975, is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to the ongoing preservation of Lorenzo State Historic Site. Through membership support and a variety of fundraising activities, the Friends each year sponsor numerous educational and special events both on-site and in conjunction with other area organizations.
About 60 people attended the March 18 meeting at the Lincklaen House, during which year-end organization updates were given and anticipated events and opportunities for 2014 were announced.
Treasurer Susan Hodge said FOL signature events each year — the garden gala, garden tea, Rippleton Schoolhouse summer camp and Christmas at Lorenzo — all were well attended and highly successful in 2013, bringing in more revenues than expenses. Budgetarily, however, the Friends suffered a net loss of nearly $11,000 last year, but that was a “planned loss” as the organization works to “better align our resources to operate as a non-profit,” Hodge said.
Friends membership numbers are holding steady, with a slight increase to date, said Kate Schwartz of the membership committee. The committee is currently working on ways to attract more and new members to the organization, she said.
Both Schwartz and Hodge said they were excited by the newly created Friends technology committee, which they see as having potential positive impacts in both of their particular areas, such as the creation of online payment options for new Friends members or donors, and the improvement of the Friends’ social media presence to increase awareness of the organization and possible membership.
Technology committee member Ben Reilley said the committee is currently working to revamp and revitalize the Friends existing website and Facebook page, as well as to create new Twitter and Instagram accounts for the organization. The goal is to better inform the community of upcoming events, Lorenzo news and fundraising opportunities, which will hopefully increase and improve community awareness and participation on the Friends organization.
Lorenzo Site Director Barb Bartlett thanked the Friends for its continuing support of Lorenzo, and said that of the 36 historic sites around New York state, the Friends of Lorenzo is viewed as “a model organization” that is typically referenced and envied by her peers in the state system.
Bartlett said that while the Cazenovia community continues to support Lorenzo, Lorenzo continues to bring visitors into Cazenovia with its many offerings each year.
The mansion and site will open for the 2014 season on Friday, May 16, and multiple historic programs will be offered during the month of May, which is Historic Preservation Month.
The big news for Lorenzo 2014 events is the return of the free summer Symphoria concert on the Lorenzo lawn, currently scheduled for Friday, July 11, Bartlett said. The Syracuse Symphony previously played free concerts every summer at Lorenzo from 1989 to 2010, when the symphony went defunct. There has been no summer concert at Lorenzo since 2011, when a brass quintet played.
“The symphony concert was always a signature event for Lorenzo, so we’re very excited they will be coming back this year,” Bartlett said.
The annual meeting concluded with guest speaker Sharon Cooney, author of the popular Cazenovia Republican column, “Years Ago in History,” presenting a slide show of photographs and highlights featured in her column.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.