Ventura County Garden Club Rings Bells and Carols

By Sheryl Hamlin

It was standing room only for the 91st Holiday Potluck of the Ventura County Garden Club (VCGC) when more than sixty members and guests enjoyed festive holiday recipes, such as turkey casserole, spicy meatballs, cabbage and mandarin salad and endless desserts.


The highlight of the meeting was the performance by the Bardsdale Bell Choir directed by Marcia Heerema known as “The Orange Pealers” shown in the following picture.


 In this video taken by Marlene Wait, Secretary, listen to the choir perform familiar bell choir holiday music and note the engaged audience. Click the link below to watch video:

Now in the following video, taken by Sheryl Hamlin, the Orange Pealers have given each table several bells of different sizes in the same note along with music for that note. One must ring the bell only when the note of the bell you are holding is shown on the music. What fun!


Click this link to watch the video:

If you have never seen these beautiful bells, below is a picture of the members who had the “F” bell at their table. Read this history about the bells plus a description from Wikipedia. Made of heavy brass, performers wear gloves to keep from tarnishing them or changing the tone.


The VCGC event featured a subset of the full bell choir. The full choir is performing on December 12th at 5:00 pm in the historic Bardsdale United Methodist Church located at 1498 Bardsdale Avenue off Highway 23 one mile south of 126 in Fillmore. Food will be served. Cost: $10.00 adults, $25.00 families and children under five are free. For inquiries or reservations, please call the church at 805-524-2070.

Each person received a free raffle ticket. VCGC President Linda Wilkinson called out the numbers of the lucky winners at the end of the meeting.

The board has more informational meetings planned for 2016. Below is the 2015/2016 VCGC Board:


The next Ventura County Garden Club meeting will be February 3, 2016 featuring a speaker on “Food Growing and Urban Gardening”. For more information, please email [email protected] and/or visit the club’s Facebook page.

Photo Credits: Sheryl Hamlin


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