By Laws

Last Revised: March 1, 2018


The name of this organization shall be VILLAGE GARDEN CLUB OF DENNIS, located in Dennis, Massachusetts and hereafter referred to as VGC.


The objectives of the club shall be to provide a common meeting ground for all interested in gardening, flower arranging, and horticulture; to encourage the beautification of our community; to promote the conservation and preservation of our natural beauty and resources; and to encourage a knowledge of horticulture, environmental science, or allied fields by means of scholarships, and community service.


  A. All full time residents of the villages of Dennis, MA may be eligible for membership.

1. The club shall be limited to 120 Active members.

2. Applications for Membership may be obtained from the membership chair(s).

3. Applicants may become members upon completion of an application, approval of the full Board and the payment of


4. A waiting list for membership will be maintained by the Membership committee. A member in good standing in a

Federated Garden Club, who becomes a full time resident of Dennis and applies to become a member of the VGC will be placed at the top of the waiting list. The order of the waiting list for Federated Garden Club applicants is dependent upon the date of the application. A letter of recommendation is required from the applicant's previous Federated Garden Club.

  B. Membership Requirements

1. An Active Member must attend four (4) general monthly meetings.

2. Every Active Member is required to be a member of at least one (1) standing committee, shall participate on the

Hospitality Committee for one(1)general meeting and contribute plants to the annual plant sale.

3. Every Active Member must be an active participant in special events. Active participation includes involvement in

planning, set up and on site support as necessary. A special event may include, but not be limited to, Plant Sale,

5. Although Associate Memberships are no longer an option, members who have been Associate Members in good

standing as of June 30, 2018 may retain their current Associate Membership standing. They will be voting members, must pay their annual dues and attend three(3) meetings. They are encouraged to participate in club activities and contribute to the Hospitality Committee at one General Meeting.

6. Should health, physical limitations or family issues occur that preclude a member in good standing from participation in club duties, they shall be excused. If possible, the member shall send a notification to the Membership chair(s).

7. Honorary Membership shall be proposed by the Full Board and voted upon by the membership. Honorary members

shall be chosen in recognition of their past service to the club. They will be voting members and shall not be required to pay dues.

8. Resignations must be submitted in writing to the Membership Chair(s).


A. The amount of the annual, nonrefundable dues shall be recommended by the Full Board and approved by a majority vote of themembers present. Dues must be received by May 30. If still delinquent by June 30, membership will be forfeited.

B. Any proposed change of dues shall be recommended by the Full Board, presented to the membership for consideration, and approved at the next General Meeting by a majority vote.


A. The regular meetings shall be held on the first Wednesday of each month from September through June unless otherwise

stated. Additional programs and workshops will be held at various times throughout the club year.

B. The Annual Meeting shall be held in June, at which time the election of officers for the ensuing term will take place. Past

presidents and Honorary Members are welcome to attend.

C. One third of the membership shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

D. For meeting obligation purposes, the VGC calendar year begins


A. The Executive Board of the VGC shall consist of the President,Vice President, Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary,

Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer. These officers may not serve in the same elected capacity for more than two (2) successive years except for the Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer who may serve for four (4) consecutive years or more as needed. The immediate Past President shall be an ex-officio member of the Executive Board for a period of three (3) months. In unforeseen circumstances the Executive Board of the VGC may act on behalf of the club.

B. The Full Board consists of the Executive Board and Chairs of Standing Committees. The Full Board will meet monthly from

August to June on a date and time determined by the Full Board.


A. President

1. The President shall preside at all meetings.

2. To carry out the VGC objectives, as defined in Article II of this document, the President may appoint appropriate


3. The President shall be an ex-officio member of all committees.

4. By January of the last term of office, the President shall appoint a Nominating Committee consisting of three (3)


5. Prior to the Annual June meeting, the President shall appoint an Auditor to review the club's financial records for

the Annual Meeting.

6. Should a vacancy occur on the Executive Board, the President may appoint a member to complete the unexpired


B. Vice President

1. In the event of the absence of the President, the Vice President shall assume the duties of the President.

2. The Vice President shall be the primary liaison with new members.

3. The Vice President shall serve as Chair of the Finance Committee and work closely with committees involved in

C. Recording Secretary

1. The Recording Secretary shall keep minutes of all Board and General meetings of the VGC.

2. At the Annual Meeting, the Recording secretary shall make available the summary reports of Committee Chairs.

3. The Recording Secretary shall submit all minutes of the Executive Board and Full Board to the Archives at the end

of each term of office.

D. Corresponding Secretary

1. The Corresponding Secretary shall handle all correspondence of the club and send notes and cards as needed.

2. In the absence of the Recording Secretary, the Corresponding Secretary shall assume the responsibilities ofthe Recording Secretary.

E. Treasurer

1. The Treasurer will handle all monies, pay all authorized bills, and give a monthly report of same.

2. The Treasurer will submit a budget to the Full Board for approval prior to presentation at the Annual Meeting for a vote by the membership. A two thirds (2/3) vote of those present is required.

3. The Treasurer will submit books and records for audit after the close of the fiscal year which is from July 1st through June 30th.

4. The Scholarship Fund is a designated account to be used for scholarships, toolships, and educational outreach

awards. A reserve of twenty five percent (25%) of the scholarship monies will remain in this account. At the

beginning of each fiscal year the Finance Committee may allocate additional monies into this fund.

5. Each committee has an approved budget. Any committee expense exceeding the budgeted amount by ($1-$100)

will require approval of the President. Any committee expense over one hundred dollars ($100.00) of the budgeted amount will require Full Board approval.

6. Proceeds and financial results from a special event are to be submitted to the Treasurer within three (3) days fol-

lowing the close of the event.

7. The Treasurer is responsible for the yearly renewal of

F. Assistant Treasurer

1. The Assistant Treasurer shall assist the Treasurer at all club functions.

2. In the absence of the Treasurer, the Assistant Treasurer shall assume the duties of the Treasurer.

3. The Assistant Treasurer is responsible for planning the Annual Luncheon and extending invitations to Honorary Members and special guests.

4. The Assistant Treasurer is responsible for the collection of all monies collected from annual dues and the Annual



A. Finance Committee

1. The Vice President will chair this committee which will be comprised of, but not limited to, President, Treasurer,

Assistant Treasurer, as well as representatives from club committees as needed.

2. The committee will meet at least two (2) times a year.

B. Standing Committees

1. To implement the objectives stated in Article II of this document, the VGC has established a Standing Committee

Structure which may include, but not be limited to: Advertising and Public Relations, Civic Beautification, Environment, Flower and Plant Display, Garden Therapy, Garden/Holiday House Tour, Grapevine Editor, Horticulture, Hospitality, Junior Gardening, Membership, Program, Scholar-ship and Educational Outreach, Standard Flower Show, Technology, and Year Book Editor.

2. Standing committees may be appointed or dissolved by the Full Board.


The By Laws shall be reviewed every three years and revised as necessary. Proposed changes will be presented to the Full Board for approval. The By Laws will be amended by presenting the proposed changes at the next General Meeting. Approval will be by two thirds (2/3) vote of the Membership at the next General Meeting.


In the event of dissolution, all of the remaining assets and property of the organization shall, after payment of necessary expenses, be distributed to such organization as shall qualify under Section 501 C (3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or corresponding provisions of any subsequent Federal Tax Law or to the Federal Government, State or Local Government for public purpose, subject to the approval of a court or competent jurisdiction within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.


The Village Garden Club of Dennis supports and maintains a conflict of interest policy. The Conflict of Interest Policy requires disclosure of known and/or potential conflict of any VGC board member. Additionally, the member is prohibited from voting on any matter in which there is known or potential conflict. The VGC will poll the members as

needed in an effort to capture and disclose any conflict of interest that exists or could possibly exist in the future.

Club Policies 
  •  All club meetings will be held at Northside United Methodist Church in Brewster at 12:00 Noon, on the first Wednesday of the month, unless otherwise stated. 

  • The VGC calendar runs from July 1st 2021 —June 30th 2022.

  • All board meetings will begin at 9:30 A.M. on the 3rd  Wednesday of the month at Dennis Memorial Library, unless otherwise stated.

  • Club meetings and workshops are cancelled when schools are closed in Dennis due to weather conditions.

  • Each Active Member is required to attend FOUR regular meetings per year. Each grand-fathered Associate Member is required to attend THREE regular meetings per year. 

  • Each Active Member is required to serve on the Hospitality Committee for  one meeting during the year.  

  • Each Active Member must participate in one Special Club Function. The 2 special functions for 2021-2022 are:   

    • Wreath Decorating — Nov 30th      

    • Plant Sale—May 20th (setup) -21st (sale day) 

  • Each Active Member is responsible for contributing 10 plants to the plant sale.  If you do not have plants of your own, the committee will decide and announce whether they would like a monetary donation from you so they may purchase plants to sell or have you purchase plants in lieu of bringing plants from your garden.  

  • Each Active member must actively participate on a standing committee throughout the year.

  • Members on any committee unable to fulfill their obligation must find a replacement and notify the committee chair.  Should circumstances put you in jeopardy of not fulfilling your membership requirements, please notify Membership Chairs:  Priscilla Cronin or Mary Ann Politi            

  • Changes in personal information should be submitted to the Membership Committee 

  • The Yearbook is for the sole use of members for club business. 

  • The club will pay for registration and lunch for the President and one other member to attend the Federation Fall Conference, the Federation Annual Meeting and the District Annual Meeting. If unable to attend, the President may appoint an alternate. 

 Standard Operating Procedures

A. Welcoming New Members

1. The application for new membership will be prepared by the Membership Committee and approved by both the President and Vice President.

2. Completed applications for membership will be delivered to and vetted by the Membership Committee.

3. Once residency in Dennis is confirmed, the Membership Committee will notify the Vice President and provide her with a copy of the application.

4. The Vice President will bring the nomination to accept the new member before the VGCD Full Board for a vote. When the application is accepted by the Full Board, the Vice President will notify the new member of approval. The Vice President will also inform those who are not approved.

5. The Vice President will be responsible for ensuring that the new member has a mentor who will perform the following duties:

a. Introduce the new member to other members.

b. Remind the new member of meeting dates and times.

c. Explain various functions and responsibilities as questions arise.

6. The Vice President will be responsible for meeting with the new member(s) and mentor(s) to explain the objectives of the club, as well as the requirements to remain an active member. She will also provide details on the various committees.

7. The Vice President will notify the new member, the chairs of all the appropriate committees, the yearbook chair, the Finance Officer, and the President in an email to confirm membership in the club. This email will include the new member's contact information.

8. At an appropriate time, the Vice President should bring together new members and their mentors, the President, and other members, including the Membership Committee for a small social gathering, such as a coffee/tea to give the new member an opportunity to ask any questions that they have, as well as provide them with an opportunity to get to know other members better.

9. The Vice President will be responsible for introducing new members and their mentors at the first regular meeting after Board

approval, and for ensuring new members are made to feel welcome. The Membership Committee will be responsible for buying

an appropriate gift/plant for the new member.

B. Introducing and Planning a Social Event

The main purpose of a social event is to create a fun environment for the members of DVGC. A social event may turn out to be a

fundraiser as well, but should break even eventually, so as not to deplete the DVGC treasury. The following are guidelines for how

to plan and present a new idea for a social event to the Board and general membership.

1. The proposal must be presented to the Board for discussion and approval. Once the proposal is approved by the Board, a chair-person will need to be appointed.

2. The chairperson will need to recommend the number of committee members required to help with planning and implementation of the event. The estimated budget will need to be determined and should include venue costs, remuneration fees for speakers/entertainers, suggested ticket prices, and a suggested break-even point. All details must be presented to the Full Board for approval.

3. The chairperson will then present the proposal at the next General Meeting for membership discussion and approval.

4. If agreed upon by the General Membership, planning and implementation may begin. The ideal time for presentation and approval would be the end of the fiscal year so the event may be included in the Yearbook for the following year. There may be

times when new proposals might be presented during the year and the Full Board will need to consider the proposal for addition to the schedule for the present or following fiscal year.

C. Membership Renewals and Yearbook Processing

1. March - Committees for following fiscal year are discussed at the Board Meeting to decide which should appear on the renewal forms for the following fiscal year.

2. April - Membership Committee should update the form for printing and distribution to all members at the April meeting. Yearbook committee chair will print labels for verification of all Yearbook personal information to be attached to each renewal form. Forms should be distributed at the April General Meeting. Forms not picked up at that meeting should be mailed to each member after the April general meeting.

3. May - Renewal forms are to be returned to Assistant Treasurer who will then vet the forms as they are received to ensure that all information needed is filled out (committee choice, hospitality, tea table, etc). If forms are incomplete or not returned, the Asst. Treasurer will notify member of missing information or will call the member to remind them to send in the form.

4. May/June - All received forms should be labeled with date received. The Asst. Treasurer will then record the member choices

in a spreadsheet for committee vetting during the June meeting. Hospitality will review monthly assignments and call members to be reassigned if needed. Finalized committee choices will be posted on a large poster board for viewing at the June meeting. At this time, changes to committee choices can be agreed upon by

club members and committee chairs.

5. June - All membership renewal forms and updated spreadsheet are handed over to Yearbook Committee chair for yearbook up-dates. Yearbook input needed:

• New Presidents Message & Picture

• Committee choices

• Updated committee descriptions

• Hospitality Schedule

• Floribunda award winner picture and write-up

• Program descriptions and Presenters for each month

• All meeting dates and locations including Plant Sale, special events, board meetings, etc.

• Any new Honorary membership designations

6. June/July - Yearbook is updated and created by Yearbook chair-person and submitted for review by end of July to all committee chairs for proofreading. Any errors, omissions or changes are sent to yearbook chair for update.

D. Guidelines for Financial Transactions

1. Expense Reimbursements – All requests for expense reimbursements must be documented on an expense reimbursement form with the original receipts attached. Forms and receipts should be forwarded to the committee chair for approval, who in turn, will forward it to the Treasurer. If an expense is charged to a business, the same procedure must be followed before the business can be paid. Please do not send forms directly to the treasurer.

2. Deposits – All monies collected should be submitted to the Treasurer with a deposit form, signed by the money holder and theTreasurer. Monies should be accounted for within 3 days of receipt.

3. Cash Advance – Request for a cash advance should be submitted on the cash advance form, signed by the committee chair and sent to the Treasurer.