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  About Friends of Czech Greenways
Lu and Tiree ChmelarFriends of Czech Greenways (FCG) is a not-for-profit organization registered in New York State in 1994. It was founded by the late Lubomir and Tiree Chmelar, co-founders of Greenways-Zelené stezky (GWZS), to reach out to the international community and promote the Czech Greenways program and ecotourism along the Prague-Vienna Greenways.


Friends of Czech Greenways is active in three primary areas:
  • Promotion – FCG gives presentations and talks about the Czech Greenways (USA, Ireland, South Africa) and works with travel writers to place articles in magazines and newspapers, such as the National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, British Airways High Time and The Boston Globe.
  • Tourism – We provide information for tourists and people interested in the greenways projects, and distribute brochures and flyers. We work with professional tour operators in the Czech Republic and their representatives in the United States. Since 2000, we have maintained this website.
  • Special Projects and Cultural Exchanges – FCG initiates and facilitates special projects and cultural exchanges between the Prague-Vienna Greenways and its sister organization, the Hudson River Valley Greenway.
    • 2014 – In partnership with the American Society of Botanic Artists (ASBA), FCG produced an article featuring the Codex Liechtenstein for publication in its Botanical Artist Journal, December 2014 issue.
    • 2011 – FCG organized exchange visits between the Lu & Tiree Chemelar Herb Garden and the Chelsea Physic Garden (CPG) in London, UK
    • 2011 – The Painting with the Bauer Brothers program for local school children was launched to inspire their interest in their heritage, botanic science and art
    • 2011 – Stefan Yarabek initiated and led a special tour for the Foundation for Landscape Studies in New York which introduced its participants to monuments, parks and gardens along the Prague-Vienna Greenways.
    • 2010 – The Tiree Chmelar Herb Garden was opened to the public in Valtice
    • 2008 – FCG presented a Czech Greeways program to students of Hospitality and Cultural Tourism at New York University and provided contacts for their study visit in the Czech Republic.

      FCG assisted travel writers from the New York Times, National Geographic and Hemisphere (United Airlines).

    • 2007 – Czernin Palace Bronze Memorial Medal Award. Petr Kolar, the Czech Ambassador to the United States awarded the Czernin Palace Bronze Memorial Medal to Lubomir Chmelar and Tiree Chmelar (in memoriam) for their contributions in preserving and promoting relations between the Czech Republic and the United States.
    • 2007 – FCG initiated and assisted The Czech Greenways with a two-week summer program Greenways Summer Work Project in July for youths 16-19 years old. It was supported by the Ceska Sporitelna bank. Twelve participants from the Czech Republic, Slovakia and the United States worked on sites along the Prague-Vienna Greenways in Moravia and Southern Bohemia
    • 2007 - Working with the Hickory Foundation, FCG selected two wooden churches for granting: a Protestant articular church in Lestiny, for structural work, and a Slovak Orthodox church in Dobroslava for icon restoration.
    • 2007 – FCG prepared and coordinated a one-week program of site visits, meetings and presentations in New York City for EPSD directors Petr Medved (Slovakia), Lubomira Kolcheva (Bugaria), Vera Mora (Hungary), David Murphy (Czech Republic) and Miroslav Kundrata (Czech Rrepublic).

      FCG also organized an "Upstate NY Tour" visiting Hudson River Valley Greenway sites and local organizations. Stefan Yarabek provided expert lectures on his projects in Cold Spring and Boscobel. The Mayor of Beacon, New York, Clara Lou Gould, gave a tour of river site projects in her town. EPSD directors also met with Barney McHenry, Hudson River Valley Greenway, and Alex Matthiessen, president of River Keepers, during their Shad Festival at Boscobel. Judy Labello, president of the Glynwood Center arranged for our tour of the Glynwood Farm.

    • 2006 – FCG coordinated the NY visit of EPSD directors Miroslav Kundrata (Czech Republic), Laszlo Potozky (Romania), Rafal Serafin (Poland) and David Murphy (Czech Republic) and organized presentations of the Central European Greenways Program at the Trust for Mutual Understanding at Columbia University.
    • 2006 – FCG visited wooden churches in Slovakia and met with Slovak organizations to help protect the unique heritage of 18th and 19th Century Carpathian village churches, built entirely of wood without nails and decorated with extraordinary wall paintings, carvings and icons; they are at risk from fire, theft and deterioration.
    • 2006 – At the invitation of Czech Tourist Authority, FCG presented Greenways at a Mikulov Week event to travel press and travel agencies in New York.
    • 2005 – FCG presented Czech greenways at the Rail Europe Group's event promoting Central Europe as a travel destination.
    • 2005 – FCG initiated and raised $20,000 for a new project "Tiree Chmelar Herb Garden" at the Valtice Chateau. It will be developed in cooperation with the Mendel University and its Horticulture faculty and students. The garden design was discussed at a brain-storming meeting at the Czech Center by experts including directors of Horticulture at The Cloisters and The Brooklyn Botanic Garden.
    • 2005 – FCG launched a new interactive biking map on our website, thanks partly to the grant from the Czech Ministry of Culture.
    • 2005 – Tiree Chmelar Herb Garden design presentation and workshop with garden experts at the Czech Center in New York
    • 2004 – FCG introduced a Travel Grant and Summer Workshop Program for exceptional students of landscape architecture and horticulture at Mendel University Horticulture School in Lednice. Sponsored by the Hickory Foundation in the United States.
    • 2004 – Cultural exchange between Oratorio Society of NY and the Brno Academic Chorus
    • 2003 – Facilitated signing of cooperation between the US East Coast Greenways Alliance and the newly established Central European Greenways program
    • 2003 – Established a Scholarship Program for best students of the Landscape Architecture School at the Mendele University in Lednice
    • 2002 – Flood Relief Drive
    • 2000 – American chorus exchange program
    • 1999-2004 – Tree restoration project at Lednice Castle park
    • 1995 – Visit of Czech mayors to the Hudson River Valley Greenway, followed by visit of mayors from HRVG in the Czech Republic
    • 1994 – Twinning of PVGW and HRVG by Governor Cuomo
Supporting Friends of Czech Greenways

The success of the Prague-Vienna Greenways model inspired a movement and the development of similar ideas in other parts of the Czech Republic, and other Eastern European countries such as Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, and Romania. FCG is fully involved in developing the Greenways for Central Europe.

We appreciate any contribution to help us further our work worldwide to benefit the preservation of the environment and cultural heritage along the Prague-Vienna Greenways, and to facilitate cultural and professional exchanges, and mutual understanding between people of the Czech Republic and the United States.

Friends of Czech Greenways is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3 organization, (exempt organization number: EX 212746, Employer Identification Number: 13-3789395) and your donation is tax-deductible under the law.

Through PayPal

By check, payable to:
Friends of Czech Greenways

Mail to:
Friends of Czech Greenways
515 Avenue I, #1B
Brooklyn, NY 11230

Board Members
Stephen Yarabek / President
Landscape Architect, Hudson & Pacific Landscape Architects, Saugerties, NY
Damian Chmelar / Treasurer
Director, Signature Client Group AT&T, New York, NY
Stephen Raphael / Vice President
Attorney at Raphael & Marks, New York, NY
Lydia Hechter
Vice-President, Marketing at Legg Mason, Stamford, CT
Richard Pivnicka
Hon. Consul General of the Czech Republic, San Francisco, CA
Hon. Jennone Walker
Former United States Ambassador to the Czech Republic


Suzanna Halsey
Administrator/Public Relations, Brooklyn, NY


Goldstein, Karlewicz & Goldstein, LLP
Accountants, Newburgh, NY
Safia Johnson
Book Keeper, Cocoa, FL


Suzanna Halsey