October Volunteer Shout-Out

Meet a couple of members of the Tucson Audubon volunteer team!

by Kara Kaczmarzyk

With the future widening of Thornydale Road to encroach 15 feet onto the Mason Center’s property, we are fortunate to have Ed Bartlett as a volunteer. In the last year alone, Ed has relocated hundreds of mammillarias, hedgehogs, and other cacti on the Mason Center property. Ed does not do all the work himself; on big transplant projects, Ed’s wonderful wife Linda is right there beside him, moving the cacti to their new homes. A member of the Board of Directors of Tucson Cactus and Succulent Society, Ed is an experienced cactus and succulent cultivator and an active volunteer for the TCSS cactus rescue crew. He certainly likes to keep busy. Ed is a trained volunteer naturalist for Pima County Parks & Recreation, but his employment background is in engineering. He is an avid reader, and retains details with an encyclopedic accuracy. When he stops into the Mason Center offices after a morning in the sun, we staff can’t resist tapping into his knowledge bank about all things plant-related. He also has some crafty methods for deterring packrats. At the Harvest Festival, check out the new garden of mammillarias thanks to Ed and Linda!

Credit Eileen White

Maggie Pearson joined Tucson Audubon’s volunteer team in 2009, working in the Tucson Audubon Nature Shop at Agua Caliente Park and using her creativity for shop displays. Since then, she has given nearly every Saturday afternoon, fall-spring, to the shift. Starting in November, that’s changing! Maggie will be the first to open the shop on a Wednesday. For years, Maggie and her husband have boarded exchange students. It has been a great experience, though she is skeptical that any new boarders will be able to live up to the outstanding student they housed most recently. She’s a vegetarian with a taste for fine French food. In addition, she’s a reader, and a quilter. You can see the fruits of her labor on display at our University-area Nature Shop, and this weekend at the Harvest Festival & Mesquite Milling. Maggie, Laura Cotter, and Becky Aparicio resurrected the quilting bee idea for the lovely wall quilt, Tweet Dreams. The group have revived a quilt once used during the Agua Caliente Park story time. They spent hundreds of hours taking apart the frayed quilt, and using the heirloom fabric, combined with beading, fabric paint, and embroidery details to create the stunning wall quilt, Tweet Dreams. More details here. If perusing the birding guides, clothes, and jewelry within the serene setting of Agua Caliente Park is all that will get you over the Wednesday hump day, stop in and say hi to Maggie soon!

Maggie (left) with Becky Aparicio and Mary Vaneecke