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Gardeners enjoy music as they shop

Karl Horeis
BRAD HORN/Nevada Appeal Cherry Jones, from left, Isabel Espinoza and Holly Van Valkenburgh enjoy jazz music played by the Millennium Bugs at the Greenhouse Garden Center on Saturday afternoon.
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Red Hatter Cherry Jones swayed to the beat of “Girl From Ipenema” in a pair of flowing purple slacks on Saturday. She was surrounded by green plants, fountains and patio furniture at the Greenhouse Garden Center.

“I love the Millennium Bugs,” she said of the quintet. “We’ve heard them before with the bigger band – the Mile High Jazz Band – at Comma Coffee.”

She and other hatters had come to the jazz concert from a birthday party for Isabel Espinoza and Louise Moody. Jazz is just one of many events planned at the center.

“We thought it would be fun to have a band play here,” said garden center marketing director Mary Thornson. “We want people to come to the Greenhouse Garden Center for more than just shopping for their gardens.”

Carson City’s Rolf Johnson liked the idea. He was able to mix business with pleasure Saturday.

“The scene in absolutely wonderful,” he said, a breeze in his hair. He was deep in the center’s plant selection looking for shrubs while his wife, Gloria, was going through the herbs.

“I’ve heard the band before and I think they’re pretty good, and I needed to do a little shopping so I figured I’d combine the two,” he said.

The pleasant sound of the Bug’s jazz could be heard at the far end of the center. The combo includes Gil Linsley on trumpet; Dan Lancaster on saxophone, clarinet and flute; David Bugli on the keyboard; George Worth on bass and trombone; and Dennis Steele on the drums. The men were all dressed in black Saturday.

There is more fun on tap at the garden center, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary with a sale through April 17. A scavenger hunt is scheduled for today. Show up at 11 a.m. and get a card with the list of items to find. When you find them, collect the sticker. When your card is full of stickers, choose from one of the plastic eggs which hold a prize.

“The grand prize will be a 15-gallon crabapple,” Thornson said.

Music and events will continue through the summer. A competition between the Carson and Douglas high school jazz bands is planned for May. Proceeds from the event will go back to the schools.

“Dave and Candi Ruf, who are the owners, support the schools big time,” Thornson said.

Over Father’s Day weekend the garden center will host live Western music. In August an art show will take place and sometime thereafter, a wine tasting.

And the Millennium Bugs may be coming back, too.

“Because it’s being well received and I think (the band members) are having fun, too,” Thornson said.

In the meantime, the jazz combo plays Tuesday night at Comma Coffee and then Monday nights from April 19 through May 3 at the Carson Nugget lounge.

Contact Karl Horeis at khoreis@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1219.