St. Patrick’s Day Parade: WPBF board members braved frigid weather to march alongside the WPBF flower-decked float in the White Plains St. Patrick’s Day parade, March 11. Decorated by Gedney Farms Nursery, the truck was provided by the City of White Plains, thanks to DPW Commissioner Richard Hope, who drove the truck, and Deputy Commissioner Stefania Mignone.

Frigid St. Pat's Parade Marchers

Jean Bello, Joanna D’Addario, Mary Ann DeRosa, Karen Quinn, Mary Merenda

Driving the floral-decked truck
Photo: Stephen E. Morton

DPW Commissioner Richard Hope

Decorating the St. Pat's Truck

Carla Nolletti

Truck bedecked with flowers from Gedney Farm Nursery
Photo: Stephen E. Morton
  • Preparing the base

  • Finalizing electrical connections

  • Readying the basket handle

  • Lifting 3,000 pounds

  • The DPW crew

  • Basket builder Frank Usowski

  • WPBF members and city officials


A year after our beloved showpiece basket at the South Broadway/Armory Place traffic island was damaged beyond repair by a car, a replica has just been positioned in the same spot. It will be planted by Amodio’s Garden Center, one of WPBF’s diamond sponsors, within the coming weeks. The project has been a collaboration between WPBF and the City of White Plains’ Department of Public Works. WPBF commissioned the construction of the original basket in 1996 and donated it to the city, where it stood laden with vibrant flowers and foliage until last year.

After much discussion about materials, size, waterproofing and how to proceed, WPBF and the City sought a craftsman who could essentially replicate the basket. Winning the bid was Frank Usowski, a custom homes builder. The new basket weighs approximately 3,000 pounds and is made of red cedar that is naturally resistant to rot and insects. The wood has been left natural to weather into shades of gray. At night the basket will be lit with LED bulbs in the basket handle and from the exterior.

Among the members of WPBF and city officials on hand to watch the installation were (see photo in slide show above-from left) Cecelia Spilotros, Joanna D’Addario, Mary Ann DeRosa, Mayor Thomas Roach, Cormac Daly, Deputy DPW Commissioner Stefania Mignone, DPW Commissioner Richard Hope, Jean Bello, Deborah Donahoe.

To see the installers in action, click here and here and here.


Dazzle with Daffodils: This major program with a goal of planting thousands and thousands of golden daffodils each fall over the next decade was started during our Golden Anniversary year in 2015, and  we have planted 34,000 bulbs so far.