Garden Parties from the Past


Botanical Building Infrastructure Improvements

IMG_5920Provide much needed infrastructure improvements to the Botanical Building in partnership the Park & Recreation Dept.  Friends of Balboa Park funded plant labeling equipment and expects to support future upgrades including enhanced floral displays and a volunteer docent program.  Click here for more information.

Arbor Day in Balboa Park – photos!

DSC_4550Friends of Balboa Park celebrated Arbor Day  on Friday, April 24, 2015.   Eleven American Tulip trees were planted with volunteer help from local area students at the War Memorial Building. Click on the image at left to view our photos.   Click here for more information on Arbor Day, including information on how you can purchase a dedicated tree in honor of a loved one.  We have two of the tulip trees still available.

Pictured at left are Girl Scouts from Troop 3289 who used their cookie earnings to dedicate a tree!

Share your stories of Balboa Park for “A Tapestry of Time”

Please share with us what you or your family remembers about Balboa Park.  We want to tell future generations of your role in building the rich heritage of the Park.  We plan to publish the collection in a new volume of “A Tapestry of Time.”  Click here to download “A Tapestry of Time” Volume I – a rich history of Balboa Park as told through people’s memories of the Park from the Expositions in 1915 and 1935 which were collected and published by Betty and Homer Peabody in 1997 .  Click here for more information about how you can submit new stories.  Thank you!

Postcard courtesy of David Marshall

Eco Ambassador Campaign 2014

Eco Ambassadors 2014Thank you for voting in the 2014 Eco-Ambassadors People’s Choice campaign!

Voting has now ended in the online campaign. We thank all who took time to vote in support of our Plaza de Balboa Smartscape project. Your vote helped support our  water conservation efforts in Balboa Park. Congratulations to the winner – ArtForm.  Because of your efforts we received over 2,500 votes!  Thank you!

Friends Celebrate National Arbor Day – Friday, April 25

ArborDay2014JeanPalmer&RooseveltStudentsFriends of Balboa Park celebrated National Arbor Day on Friday, April 25, 2014 in Zoro Garden.  Attendees  learned about programs underway to beautify the Park for the 2015 Centennial, including water conservation and smart scaping in several gardens around the Park.  We were joined by school children from Roosevelt Middle and San Diego High School.  Featured special guest Jean Palmer, the great-granddaughter of Arbor Day Founder J. Sterling Morton, is pictured at left planting  a special ceremonial Oak tree to commemorate the occasion.   To view our event program, click here.

San Diego Unified to Restart Pilot Balboa Park program with help from the Friends!

school bus Barta (2)Friends of Balboa Park has initiated the return of 5th grade school children to Balboa Park for one day field trips starting in 2014!  San Diego Unified School Board voted to restart this program, provided funding for buses can be guaranteed. Friends of Balboa Park will be raising funds for bus transportation.  At $185/bus, the annual need to get school children into the Park for one day/week will be $40,000 per year for all San Diego 5th graders.  We appreciate your support at any level to give each child this special enrichment to the regular curriculum, an experience the children will never forget. To read more about the program, and make a donation, click here.  Thank you!

Easter Lily Floral Display

Easter Lilies

The spring seasonal floral display features beautiful white Easter Lilies. This display is installed prior to the Easter holiday through the month of May. Easter Lilies traditionally symbolize life, purity, hope, peace, and beauty. This seasonal floral display is made possible with community support, Friends of Balboa Park and the Park and Recreation Department.

This year, without a local grower in Southern California and the increasing cost, the annual Easter Lily display has been cancelled per the recommendation of the Balboa Park Horticulturist. We aim to present another beautiful display for Spring for your viewing pleasure, stay tuned for more information

If you would like to make a donation to support the seasonal floral displays within the Botanical Building, make a donation today and let us know or contact

The Botanical Building is FREE to the public and open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and closed on Thursdays and major holidays.

Founder’s Perspective – Closing Speech by Betty Peabody from Friends of Balboa Park Annual Awards Luncheon

Founder Betty Peabody. 
Photo by Sam Hodgson

Today we are recognizing eight decades of volunteerism to Balboa Park by the extended Gildred Family.  We all thank Helen and Phil Gildred, Sr. for their progeny.

May I offer my congratulations to all of our honorees.  You each epitomize the purpose of this luncheon: to recognize decades of service, whether highly visible or little acknowledged dedication behind the scenes.  You all participate in polishing the treasure we call Balboa Park.  To read the text of the entire speech, click here.

Name that Tune!

Friends of Balboa Park is proud to get you behind the scenes around Balboa Park. If you are a regular Park visitor, you have probably heard one of the noontime bell medleys coming from the California Tower. But few people know the process behind the sound. To read more about this fascinating instrument and its rich history in the park, and to find out how you can submit a song request, click here to view entire article submitted by current Carillonneur Gina Seashore.