• Monday, September 24, 2018
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Botanical garden nonprofit on Hawaii island awarded $550,000

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CAPTAIN COOK >> A Hawaii botanical garden nonprofit has been awarded a $550,000 grant through a federal community forest program.

The nonprofit Friends of Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden on Saturday celebrated at its annual meeting and open house held at the garden in Captain Cook, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported.

Saturday was one day after what would have been biologist Amy Greenwell’s 98th birthday.

“This is a nice whack of money,” Maile Melrose, president of the Friends Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden, told the group of members gathered at the garden. “So I think you should all feel proud of this board.”

The grant comes through the Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program under the U.S. Forest Service, which is designed to give communities the chance to conserve local forests and offer recreational opportunities to the public while protecting water supplies and wildlife habitat.

The Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden has remained closed to the public since the Bishop Museum shuttered it in 2016. The nonprofit has collected $1.3 million in raised funds that can go toward buying the garden from the Bishop Museum.

“We are looking forward to entering negotiations with the museum to purchase the garden,” Melrose said.

The Bishop Museum closed the site to the public in January 2016 after putting the land up for sale, although it continues to employ a single staff member, garden manager Peter Van Dyke, to manage it.

In May 2016, the Friends of Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden officially became a nonprofit and has worked to reopen the garden to the public and once again offer its programs to local residents and visitors.

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