two gardeners pruning

Meet New Members of Our Garden Team: Summer Edition

Summer means lots happening at the Garden, including bringing on new team members and seasonal staff! Read on to meet new (and some returning!) members of our Garden Team:

Education

Sara Rabas

Community Education Specialist

What field are you coming from?

I recently completed my 31st year of teaching public education at the Kewaunee School District where I taught Kindergarten, 4th grade, 7th/8th grade Social Studies, 6th grade Literacy, Social Studies, & Science.

I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from UW-Stout and a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from UW-River Falls along with a wide variety of trainings in Environmental Education.

Some of the community projects that I was involved in at Kewaunee included the 4th of July Firecracker Run, the KHS Mitten Toss, Storm Drain Stenciling in the community, collecting thousands of used magic markers to be turned into clean fuel energy via the Crayola Color Cycle-It Program, being the 6th grade KMS Camp U-Nah-Li-Ya Coordinator, and earning grant money to create the KSD Monarch Garden full of native plants.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I look forward to serving the large Green Bay community that I live in by celebrating, connecting, educating, and inspiring people with the positive power of plants.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I love Monarch butterflies as you can see in my photo. This was taken feeding a Monarch at the Garden when I was a member attending Butterflies & Blooms in 2019.


Events

Meg Madsen

Events Team Assistant

What field are you coming from?

I am currently in school at NWTC right down the street from the Garden. I am in the Hospitality and Events Management program and am hoping to graduate in 2024!

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

It’s my second summer season with the Garden, and I’m so excited to be in this beautiful place for weddings and concert events connecting our event guests with nature!

What’s a fun fact about you?

I make my own kombucha!


Marketing & Communications

Claudia Fritsche

Social Media Specialist

What field are you coming from?

Marketing – Social Media Management

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I am excited to be a messenger for the Garden and share all of the amazing things it has to offer everyone in the community.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I LOVE warm weather. Summer is my favorite season, so for the next few months you can find me outside gardening or at the beach on my days off!


Guest Experience

June Srubas

Guest Experience Intern

What field are you coming from?

Northland College, where I am studying Studio Arts and Biology.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I am excited to learn more about the Garden and share the beauty of plants with Green Bay! The Garden is a really great place with lots of opportunities to learn.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I have a pet Leopard Gecko name Zuko!


Rebecca Luedeman

Guest Experience Associate

What field are you coming from?

Teaching high school.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I’m excited to learn more about the Garden and all the different events and activities.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I’m a Detroit Red Wings hockey fan!


Nan Guzzonato

Guest Experience Associate

What field are you coming from?

Business owner

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

The Garden is a beautiful place and offers experiences for all ages and is inclusive to all. It has something for everyone, including classes and music.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I owned a quilt and yarn shop for 25 years. I wasn’t ready to retire and always loved the Garden. So that’s why I decided I would enjoy working here.


Sara Koehn

Guest Experience Associate

What field are you coming from?

I am coming from being a stay-at-home mom and Etsy shop owner.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I am happy to be part of the Garden. It is an ever changing, beautiful environment for the community to connect, learn, and refresh.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I love to crochet.


Maria Welz

Guest Experience Associate

What field are you coming from?

You’ll see me mostly in the evenings or on weekends as I also work for St. Vincent de Paul-Milwaukee in Membership Development and Training.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I love that children are encouraged to develop their curiosity about nature and that volunteers are so welcome in so many areas of interest.

What’s a fun fact about you?

Ugh…nothing fun to report BUT I am a mom of three sons and a “Buscia” to Henry, age 7, and Ezra, age 1!


Horticulture

Meilssa Maurer-Ford

Horticulturist

What field are you coming from?

I was a seasonal gardener in 2022 and helped with planting the new Bell Children’s Garden. I graduated from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln with a major in Horticulture and minors in Spanish and Biology, I also have a DVM from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I had a fabulous time working at the Garden last summer and fall, and I am eager to be working with all the horticulturists and employees again. I am very excited about the new Bell Children’s Garden. Especially since I will be able to work with native plants, water/bog plants, insects and maybe even see a few hopefully healthy animals. I am looking forward to caring for a garden that will open young minds to the awesomeness of the natural world.

What’s a fun fact about you?

My husband and I met at Olbrich Botanical Gardens when I was a horticulturist there in the late 90s. We have two awesome 13-year-old twin boys, a dog, a cat, and fish.


Jim Brazeau

Plant Records Specialist

What field are you coming from?

I’m in my 12th season a Plant Records Specialist for the Garden!

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

Always look forward to learning something new and meeting patrons while in the Garden.

What’s a fun fact about you?

In the winter season, I teach Tai Chi in Florida.


Cayla Leahy

Seasonal Gardener

What field are you coming from?

I’m in my 11th season as a Seasonal Gardener here.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I enjoy gardening and it is a nice change of pace from the school year. Plus, I always look forward to working with our Horticulture Team… that’s why I keep coming back!

What’s a fun fact about you?

When I say I like cats, it’s an understatement.


Alexander (Alex) Doone

Seasonal Gardener

What field are you coming from?

This is my 2nd season as a Seasonal Gardener with the Garden.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I’m excited to see another year of blooms, as I enjoy watching the evolution of the garden spaces through the seasons. Also, I’m excited to see the community engage with the new Bell Children’s Garden.

What’s a fun fact about you?

When I’m not at the garden, you can find me hiking, tending to houseplants, or skiing in the winter.


Amanda Hatton

Seasonal Gardener

What field are you coming from?

It’s my 3rd season back at the Garden.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I love taking care of plants and growing things. I’ve really enjoyed seeing how the garden changes over the years and seasons. I love being outside and love that part of the job.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I really enjoy taking green initiatives. I compost with my backyard chickens and worms in my pantry. I find it a challenge to try to find new ways to use resources wisely.


Carolee Cretton

Seasonal Gardener

What field are you coming from?

This is my first summer with the Horticulture Team as I volunteered with them the last two years.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

The staff and volunteers that are at the Garden are a delight to work with. I am an outdoor girl that loves playing in the dirt.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I am caring, kind, and dedicated.


Nicole Hutchinson

Garden Intern

What field are you coming from?

Studying Horticulture and Landscaping at Fox Valley Tech.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I am excited to come back for a second season at the Garden. I am looking forward to learning more and helping make the gardens look amazing.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I have been married since April 2018 to my husband Brent. I have a little 7 lb yorkie named Rosie. I love to crochet!


Casey Paprocki

Garden Intern

What field are you coming from?

Studying Horticulture at UW-River Falls.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I’ve volunteered here in past years and really enjoy it, so it’s exciting to be able to return in a more involved position.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I’m interested in insects and other arthropods. I like seeing them when working outside.


Daphne Jacak

Garden Intern

What field are you coming from?

Studying Horticulture at UW-River Falls.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I am excited to explore the industry of public gardens, get to know my fellow coworkers, and expand my knowledge of gardening and plants.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I love to be outdoors and being active through hiking, skiing, and fishing. My other passions include, raising animals, sports, and of course Horticulture and gardening!


Elizabeth Campbell

Garden Intern

What field are you coming from?

Studying Plant Sciences – Sustainable Landscape Design at the University of Tennessee – Knoxville.

What are you excited about in relation to the Garden’s mission?

I am excited to contribute to such a unique and beautiful space and to learn from other interns and horticulturists here.

What’s a fun fact about you?

My most recent job was at a cat café!

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Sounds of Nashville on August 11

will be moved indoors with limited seating due to Friday’s weather forecast. Tickets are no longer available. We apologize for any inconvenience!

Our online ticketing system is currently down. To purchase tickets, contact us at 920.490.9457 or visit the Garden.