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January-April Calendar

Highlights include Seed Swap, the Orchid Show and Easter Egg Brunch

Jasmine Leonas, (847) 835-6829
jleonas@chicagobotanic.org

Release Date: 
Monday, November 28, 2016
Orchid Show

 

There’s always something going on at the Chicago Botanic Garden, and winter is no exception. Take part in events going on in early 2017, from education programs and family classes to the ever-popular Orchid Show. Visit chicagobotanic.org for more information.

ONGOING

Story Time in the Lenhardt Library – Mondays, January 9 to May 22 (10 to 11 a.m.)

Children are invited to enjoy nature-themed activities and stories on Monday mornings in the Lenhardt Library. Program is geared for children ages 2 to 5, accompanied by a caregiver. No story time on January 16.

Winter Woods Walks – Sundays, January 15 and February 12 (2 p.m.)

Bundle up, get outside and go on a nature walk. Meet at the McDonald Woods Shelter for a guided, 40-minute trek. No reservations necessary.

School Day-off Camp – Mondays, January 16 and February 20

School may be out, but camp at the Chicago Botanic Garden is on. Children will participate in high-quality learning activities with experienced teachers who use inquiry-based, hands-on activities. Each camp day’s theme changes depending on the season or holiday. Camp on January 16 focuses on Snow Investigations, while camp on February 20 is about Presidents & Plants.

Seed Library – Monday, January 23, to Friday, March 31

Stop by the Lenhardt Library to “borrow” seeds to plant, grow, harvest and save. At harvest time, save seeds for yourself, and return some to the Seed Library for others to “borrow” next season. With the borrowed seeds, you also receive resources on seed growing, harvesting, and saving. In 2017, seed library crops are tomato, pea, squash, sunflower, basil, soybean, and pepper. Lenhardt Library hours are extended on the weekends to 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the Orchid Show from February 11 through March 26.

Botanical Charts: 19th Century Classroom Posters – Friday, March 31, to Sunday, June 11

This rare book exhibition in the Lenhardt Library features graphic representations of plant species, used as teaching tools. Free talk at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 2. 

Note: Wonderland Express ends Monday, Jan. 2

 

JANUARY

Weekend Family Class: Loco for Cocoa! – Saturday, January 21, and Sunday, January 29 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.)

Discover the sweet story of chocolate from bitter bean to delicious dessert. Participants will investigate the raw ingredients, taste test different types of chocolate, and practice dipping fruits and snacks into melted chocolate to make treats enjoyable. Weekend Family Classes bring adults and children together to explore cool things about how plants connect science, art, history and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home.

Seed Swap Weekend – Saturday, January 21, and Sunday, January 22 (Seed Swap is Sunday, from 3 to 5 p.m.)

The annual Seed Swap Weekend returns, with a weekend full of how-to demonstrations and gardening information, ending with a lively Seed Swap on Sunday afternoon. Saturday focuses on fee-based classes and workshops, like Organic Vegetable Gardening Basics and Making Your Own Seed Balls, along with a free Seed Bank Tour and screening of the film “Seed Battles.” Sunday kicks off with a lecture at 1:30 p.m. by William Woys Weaver, internationally known food historian and author of 16 books. The swap takes place after the lecture, filling Nichols Hall with enthusiastic seed swapping and advice sharing. Gardeners are invited to bring saved and leftover seeds to swap, though it’s not required. There will also be a cooking class offered on Sunday. The Seed Swap is one of our most popular gardening events of the year, and a highlight of our winter calendar of events.

 

FEBRUARY 

Orchid Show Members’ Night – Friday, February 10 (5 to 7:30 p.m.)

Members get an exclusive visit to the Orchid Show the night before it opens to the public. See the rich colors of the orchids while enjoying live music from Callaloo, light refreshments and a cash bar. Orchid experts will be on hand to answer questions. Tickets are $30 per person.

Orchids in Vogue: The Orchid Show – Saturday, February 11, to Sunday, March 26 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

Discover brilliantly beautiful and diverse orchids in a vibrant indoor show. This year’s exhibition expands to six weeks, giving visitors more time to enjoy the show. A great way to stay warm over a cold winter, the Orchid Show brings more than 10,000 orchids to the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Regenstein Center. Photography is allowed, but tripods and monopods are only welcome on Wednesday from noon to 4 p.m. Music-events like Morning Music with Orchids and Evening with Orchids give visitors a chance to enjoy the talents of local musicians while surrounded by the beauty of the Orchid Show. Multiple adult education and family weekend classes will be offered relative to the exhibition. Visitors will be able to purchase the orchids displayed at the exhibition at a post-Orchid Show plant sale. Tickets for the Orchid Show are currently on sale. Adults $12 non-member/$10 member; children (3-12 years) and seniors (62 years and up) $10 non-member/$8 member; children under 3 are free. 

Morning Music with Orchids – Tuesdays and Thursdays, February 14, to Thursday, March 23 (10 to 11 a.m.)

Enjoy an indoor concert at the Orchid Show on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Each week features different local musicians. The free, hour-long concerts take place in Nichols Hall.

Weekend Family Class: Sweet Treats: Cold Eats – Saturday, February 12, and Sunday, February 25 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.)

Many of our favorite cold sweet treats get their flavors from plants. Vanilla comes from an orchid and fruits grow on bushes, trees or vines. In this class, participants will put together (and taste!) some easy-to-make fruity treats like smoothies and flavored shaved ice and receive recipes to make at home. Weekend Family Classes bring adults and children together to explore cool things about how plants connect science, art, history and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home.

 

MARCH

Weekend Family Class: Churn It and Flip ‘Em – Saturday, March 4, and Sunday, March 12 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.) and Saturday, March 25 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.)

Your next homemade breakfast won’t be the same after you learn how fun and easy it is to make your own butter. What better way to enjoy your butter than by spreading it onto delicious buttermilk pancakes? Participants will learn about the plants used to make breakfast [Office3] and take home recipes to replicate this delectable feast at home. Weekend Family Classes bring adults and children together to explore cool things about how plants connect science, art, history and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home.

ScreenBreak Week – Sunday, March 5, to Saturday, March 11

Started in 1995 by the Winnetka Alliance for Early Childhood, ScreenBreak encourages children to turn off devices with screens, including computers, video games and television, and explore other options for a week. Throughout the week, merchants and community organizations provide wonderful alternative activities. The Garden offers Story Time in the Lenhardt Library on Monday, as well as Family Drop-in Programs on Wednesday, March 8, and Friday, March 10, from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Regenstein Learning Campus. Free parking is offered to participants in ScreenBreak Week. Families need to show a ScreenBreak button, wristband or card to waive the parking fee. Visit www.theallianceforec.org more information.

Illinois Orchid Society Spring Show & Sale – Saturday, March 11, and Sunday, March 12 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday)

See artistically arranged displays of orchids – from the rarest species to cultivated hybrids – vying for ribbons at the Illinois Orchid Society’s show. After the show, buy your own orchid and growing supplies at the society’s sale to take home and cultivate your own beautiful blooms. 

Evening with Orchids – Thursday, March 16 (6 to 8 p.m.)

Sample specialty cocktails and see spectacular orchids by night. Tickets include a wristband, tasting sheet and tasting glass, as well as entry to an evening viewing of the Orchid Show. Advance tickets are $30; member tickets $25. Day-of tickets are $33; member tickets $28. 

Weekend Family Class: Pizza Party – Saturday, March 25 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.)

Pizza has lots of ingredients from the garden – tomatoes, wheat, herbs and all the vegetables you can put on top. Learn how these plants grow and how they are used to make pizza. Participants will plant their own herb garden to take home. Weekend Family Classes bring adults and children together to explore cool things about how plants connect science, art, history and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home.

Spring Break Camp – Monday, March 27, to Friday, March 31 (9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.)

Children in kindergarten to fifth grade can participate in high-quality learning activities with experienced teachers who use inquiry-based, hands-on programming. Each day of camp revolves around a different theme, including art, cuisine and conservation. The activities range from dissecting and planting seeds to searching for birds and early springs plants on nature hikes. Campers will create take-home science themed projects. Registration is open now.

Post-Orchid Show Plant Sale – Thursday, March 30 (10 a.m. to noon for Garden Plus Members; Noon to 2 p.m. for Members; 2 to 4 p.m. for non-Members)

Take home one of the plants featured in the Orchid Show at the post-show sale. Early entry times are based on membership levels. The sale opens to the general public at 2 p.m.

 

APRIL

Weekend Family Class: Pizza Party – Sunday, April 2 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.)

Pizza has lots of ingredients from the garden – tomatoes, wheat, herbs and all vegetables you can put on top. Learn how these plants grow and how they are used to make pizza. Participants will plant their own herb garden to take home. Weekend Family Classes bring adults and children together to explore cool things about how plants connect science, art, history and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home.

Weekend Family Class: Gumballs & Superballs – Saturday, April 8 (9:30 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 2:30 p.m.)

Find out how people use parts of rainforest trees to make chewing gum and rubber. Create your own bouncing ball and flavorful gum to take home. This program includes the use of liquid latex. The chewing gum is vegan and nut-free. Weekend Family Classes bring adults and children together to explore cool things about how plants connect science, art, history and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home.

Easter Egg Brunch – Sunday, April 16 (Five seatings: 9 a.m., 10 a.m., 11 a.m., noon and 1 p.m.)

Join us for an Easter Egg Brunch filled with festivities for the whole family. Celebrate spring and enjoy a festive brunch buffet at the Garden. Bring a basket because the hunt begins after brunch. Hop to the Rose Garden lawn and join in the Easter egg hunt before taking a stroll to explore the vibrant colors and spring blooms. Cash bar available. Tickets will be available online beginning February 1 and at the Visitor Center. New this year: Family portraits available for an additional fee by Julie Kaplan, who has been named Best Photographer from Make It Better Magazine two years in a row. Sitting charge is $75, (for a 10-minute session) and will be taken in advance by CBG. The fee will be applied to the purchase. Package prices start at $75 and go up. Photo location will be English Walled Garden, with the rain plan in Semi-Tropical Greenhouse.

Earth Day Walk – Saturday, April 22 (1 p.m.)

Spend part of Earth Day exploring the Mary Mix McDonald Woods, a 100-acre, rare remnant of the oak woodlands once common in northeastern Illinois. April is a special time in the woods to see the rich variety of spring blooming ephemeral flowers. The group meets at the What’s in Bloom cart in front of the Visitor Center. Volunteer Joanne Schmitz will identify wildflowers in bloom and explain their fleeting presence. This this informative and timely walk in honor of Earth Day also will show how the woods have changed through the Garden’s history and the restoration efforts currently underway.

Midwest Daffodil Society Show – Saturday, April 29 (noon to 4:30 p.m.) and Sunday, April 30 (10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)

The Midwest Daffodil Society’s show features hundreds of daffodils on display that will be judged by the society. The show includes cut blooms, floral design and photography competitions. The show will include floral designs inspired by the Garden. Daffodil growers of all skill levels are invited to participate.

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Editors, please note: For digital images, contact Jasmine Leonas at (847) 835-6829 or at jleonas@chicagobotanic.org.

Interact with the Garden for this and other Garden events and programs:

 

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