Mount Ellen’s shaded side yard offered a cool and pleasant spot for the Shenandoah Garden Club’s annual July picnic. The elegant 250-year-old house is home to club member Giulia Tencalla and her husband, Yves. The large grassy yard, colorful gardens, sheltering trees, and bright, humidity-free evening added to the enjoyment of the event. Laughter echoed as friends seen only a few times a year greeted each other. The tables, decorated with summer bouquets and laden with salads, side dishes, and desserts, presented a feast for both sight and palate. In addition to being green-thumb gardeners, each club member is also a chef extraordinaire, and the evening’s buffet was rated by all present as worthy of three stars. After a selection of desserts was consumed, President Judy Bolyard presided over a brief business meeting. In a surprise presentation, Jim Keel and Robert Castagnetto were made Honorary Shenandoah Garden Club members in appreciation of their volunteer service. Keel and Castagnetto orchestrated and organized guest parking for that event for many years. In addition to receiving a framed certificate, each man was also given a gift certificate to the Battletown Inn in Berryville, Va.