It’s a sure sign of spring when American Cancer Society volunteers take to the streets with bunches of daffodils in hand. Vineyarders buy bouquets for themselves or use them as gifts in order to support cancer research; some even make anonymous donations so flowers go to hospital patients, nursing homes, and senior centers.
Nationwide, the American Cancer Society reports that during the last 14 years, Daffodil Days has raised more than $240 million dollars. The flowers always arrive in March to coincide with the first day of spring.
For several weeks in advance, a team of 10 will take orders from businesses, schools, and town halls. At each location, an employee coordinates the group order and collection.
On Tuesday, nine volunteers met the 9:30 ferry, which brought them 24 boxes holding 12,000 daffodils. The team divided up their shares in the parking lot and, joined by four others, took off to fill orders and to leave the donated bunches.
The flowers that remained after deliveries were sold at tables at Cronig’s and at the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital on Wednesday, and at the Edgartown Stop & Shop and West Tisbury Post Office on Thursday.
Coordinator Dorothy Bangs, who has been in charge for so many years she can’t even remember how long it’s been, marvels at the energy of her team and all the volunteers who organize the group orders. “Considering the economy, we did far better than I thought we would,” she said.