The Party in the Park luncheon was held on May 11 at the Pinebank Promontory in Jamaica Plain. Together, more than $550,000 was raised to support the 1,100-acre Emerald Necklace park system that serves as a backyard for residents and a destination for more than one million visitors each year. Karen Mauney-Brodek, President of the Emerald Necklace Conservancy, welcomed the guests. Mayor Michelle Wu joined the event and spoke on the importance of public parks and the work of the Emerald Necklace Conservancy. Karen Abbott, President and CEO of Boston Harbor Now who received the Liff Spirit Award, gave a moving speech about her career and meaning of the award to her. Janet Wu was the event emcee and David Lombardo was the auctioneer.
“Party in the Park, the Emerald Necklace Conservancy’s signature fundraising event, funds capital improvements and essential tree care in the parks,” noted Karen Mauney-Brodek, President of the Emerald Necklace Conservancy. “It also supports our education programs, free public programming, advocacy efforts and special initiatives. We are extremely proud of the work the Conservancy has done for nearly 25 years to maintain and improve the Emerald Necklace, and to connect our communities to these parks – your parks – which are such an important part of our city, and our collective efforts to manage climate change. In this year, as we mark the bicentennial of the Necklace’s creator, Frederick Law Olmsted, we are especially humbled by the power of these special places to heal, restore and bring us together.”
The luncheon also featured the presentation of the Liff Spirit Award to Kathy Abbott, President and CEO of Boston Harbor Now—a superior park advocate who has made an indelible impact on the preservation of waterfront parks and open space in Massachusetts. The award is named in honor of the late Boston Parks Commissioner Justine Mee Liff, who served from 1996 until her passing in 2002. “Boston, the Commonwealth, our country and the world need exceptional parks… to help heal our wounds and lead us to a safer, healthier, and more fulfilling future,” shared Kathy Abbott, 2022 Liff Spirit Awardee.