In 1964 an article appeared in the garden section of the Kansas City Star, stating that Bob Flynn was growing Bonsai.This article prompted calls to Bob from others who were interested in Bonsai and soon their was a group of 15.
In the spring of 1965, Dr. John Baumgardt, of the Loose Park Garden Association, requested that the group bring their Bonsai to a flower show to be held at the garden center. He also suggested forming a local Bonsai organization. The group of 15 would become our founding members and Bob Flynn would become our first president.
The group met in January of 1967 for the first workshop at the Loose Park Garden Center and in 1968 was incorporated as the Bonsai Society of Greater Kansas City with 46 charter members. Most important to them was the mission statement they established:
“to promote interest in and appreciation of the art of Bonsai through education, training, information and exhibition”
We proudly continue their mission and legacy.
Our members come from many backgrounds and occupations. Some are also active in the American Bonsai Society and Bonsai Clubs International, and other Bonsai organizations throughout the country.
In 1993, the Society’s 25th anniversary was celebrated with several special events throughout the year. This included a ribbon cutting by the Consul General of Japan, who at time resided in Kansas City, at the fall exhibit. In addition each exhibit tree was photographically documented for the Society’s archives. In 2008, the 40th anniversary was celebrated in conjunction with a visit by Bonsai master Dave de Groot, international artist, teacher and curator of the Weyerhaeuser Pacific Rim Bonsai collection. In June of 2019, once again Dave was welcomed to KC as we celebrated our 50th anniversary. All enjoyed cake with blue and green icing that matched our new, blue polo shirts. The latter was printed with our logo and includes our mission statement of “learning together”.
We are excited to continue the Bonsai Legacy in KC.