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Hispanic Heritage Celebration photo credit: Dallas Arboretum

To kick off Hispanic Heritage Month, the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden celebrates its fifth annual Hispanic Heritage Celebration on Saturday and Sunday, September 10th and 11th. Highlights include its signature Quinceañera Fashion Show, live musical performances from Havana NRG and Selena tribute band, Bidi Bidi Banda, cooking demonstrations, food and vendors. Presented by Bank of America, the Hispanic Heritage Celebration is included for all paid garden guests. Advanced online ticket reservations are required.*

The festival starts on Saturday, September 10th at 10 a.m. inside Rosine Hall with the much anticipated Quinceañera Fashion Show. Select participants showcase their beautiful and colorful quinceañera dresses and share their favorite traditions and future plans. Guest emcees are Adriana López, producer and host at Telemundo 39, and The Honorable Pauline Medrano, Dallas County treasurer. Following the show, the young women parade through the garden alongside music played by Mariachi Rosas Divinas, North Texas’ first all-female mariachi ensemble, allowing even more guests to see their dresses.

Dallas City Officials and other distinguished guests are scheduled to attend the Quinceañera Fashion Show and welcome participants, their families and garden visitors.

Mario Quintanilla, Dallas Arboretum board member and Hispanic Heritage Celebration chair, said, “The Hispanic Heritage Celebration at the Dallas Arboretum has grown in popularity these past few years, and we are excited to celebrate this event’s fifth year with plenty of fun for the family.”

Throughout the garden, the Dallas Arboretum has planned activities celebrating Hispanic culture and traditions including vendors, dance and musical performances, and cooking demonstrations.

Highlighting the diversity of Hispanic cuisine, these cooking demonstrations feature the expertise of four distinguished chefs, including Mexican American dishes from Chef Sara Carlock of Amor y Queso, Puerto Rican influences from Chef Isabel Snetsinger of the Dallas Arboretum and Gil’s Elegant Catering, Colombian cooking by Chef Dunia Borga of La Duni, and exquisite Dominican flavors courtesy of Chef Miriam Jiménez of Miriam’s Cocina Latina.

Saturday, Sept. 10

10 a.m. – Celebration of Quinceañera Fashion Show (Rosine Hall)

11:15 a.m. – Quinceañera Parade led by Mariachi Rosas Divinas (Paseo & A Tasteful Place)

10 a.m.-3 p.m. Vendor market (Entry Plaza)
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Girl Scouts make and take crafts (near Pecan Grove)

11 a.m.-12 p.m. Colombian cooking demonstration by Chef Dunia Borga of  La Duni Baking Studio, (A Tasteful Place)

12 p.m.-2 p.m. – Rodrigo Garcia’s piano performance (Jeanne’s Pavilion)

1-2 p.m. Mexican American dishes from Chef Sara Carlock of Amor y Queso (A Tasteful Place)

2:30 p.m.–4 p.m. Havana NRG! (Rosine Hall)

4 p.m.-5 p.m. – Flamenca Rumbas and We Sevillanas dance performance (Jeanne’s Pavilion)

 

Sunday, Sept. 11

10 a.m.-3 p.m. Vendor market (Entry Plaza)
10 a.m.-11:45 a.m. Peruvian Consulate Performance (Jeanne’s Pavilion)
11 a.m. -12:00 p.m. Puerto Rican influences from Chef Isabel Snetsinger of the Dallas Arboretum and Gil’s Elegant Catering (A Tasteful Place)

12 p.m.-2 p.m. Henry Muñoz’s piano performance (Jeanne’s Pavilion)

1-2 p.m. Dominican cooking demonstration courtesy of Chef Miriam Jiménez of Miriam’s Cocina Latina (A Tasteful Place)

2-4 p.m. Bidi Bidi Banda, a Selena tribute band, performance (Rosine Hall)

Schedule is subject to change. Check the website and Dallas Arboretum’s social media for the latest information.

Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden:

Thanks to a generous donation from the Kelley Family, admission to the Rory Meyers Children's Adventure Garden is complimentary for the weekend of Sept. 10th- 11th with a paid garden ticket. This garden has many activities for children and families including the opening day of the #IfThenSheCan - The Exhibit.

From September 10 to December 31, 2022, the Dallas Arboretum presents 50 of the 3D-printed orange life-size statues from #IfThenSheCan - The Exhibit, the largest collection of statues ever assembled together, installed throughout the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. An array of in-person and virtual programs, an exhibit scavenger hunt activity, and sponsored school group visits throughout the fall brings to life inspirational stories of women in STEM who are shaping a better world. The exhibit has traveled to and from the National Mall and Smithsonian museums in Washington, D.C. and on the TODAY Show. Some highlighted Hispanic figures include Greetchen Díaz-Muñoz, Ph.D. (microbiologist/educator), Myria Perez (paleontologist/fossil preparator) and Roselin Rosario-Meléndez, Ph.D. (polymer/formulation chemist).

Saturday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
L'Oréal USA Chemist Roselin Rosario-Meléndez, Ph.D., If/Then Ambassador:

Plantastic Natural Lip Balm Lab and Meet & Greet

Additional activities throughout this garden include the Walne Family Discovery Lab: Marvelous Maize (Exploration Center) 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Did you know that maize, or corn, was grown in ancient Mexico? This lab investigates viscosity using a corn product commonly found in the food people eat.  

Sept. 10-11 Hispanic Heritage Weekend, 10 a.m.-2.p.m. (Exploration Center Plaza)

Explore fruits and vegetables from Central and South America. Create your own traditional Mexican folk art papel picado. Learn about the important contributions that Latino scientists are working on to solve many of the world’s problems.

Those interested in applying to be a vendor can visit https://www.dallasarboretum.org/events-activities/hispanic-heritage-celebration/ or contact Jaci Ingram at jingram@dallasarboretum.org or 214.515.6605. Space is limited.

Special thanks to the Honorary Council Members:**

City of Dallas:

The Honorable Eric Johnson, Mayor, City of Dallas

The Honorable Chad West, Mayor Councilmember, District 1

The Honorable Jesse Moreno, Councilmember, District 2

The Honorable Casey Thomas, II Councilmember, District 3

The Honorable Carolyn King Arnold, Mayor Pro Tem, District 4

The Honorable Adam Bazaldua, Councilmember, District 7

The Honorable Tennell Atkins, Council Member District 8

The Honorable Paula Blackmon, Council Member, District 9

The Honorable Adam McGough, Councilmember, District 10

The Honorable Jaynie Schultz, Councilmember, District 11

The Honorable Cara Mendelsohn, Council Member, District 12

The Honorable Gay Donnell Willis, Council Member, District 13

The Honorable Paul Ridley, Councilmember, District 14

The Honorable Delia Jasso, Former Dallas City Council Member

Max Sanchez, Council Liaison

Dallas County:

The Honorable Clay Jenkins, Dallas County Judge

The Honorable Dr. Theresa M. Daniel, Dallas County Commissioner, District 1

The Honorable J.J. Koch, Dallas County Commissioner, District 2

The Honorable Dr. Elba Garcia, Dallas County Commissioner, District 4

The Honorable Pauline Medrano, Dallas County Treasurer

The Honorable Juan Jasso, Justice of the Peace

State of Texas:

The Honorable Kelly Hancock, Texas State Senator

The Honorable Nathan Johnson, Texas State Senator

The Honorable Rhetta Bowers, Texas State Representative

The Honorable Julie Johnson, Texas State Representative

The Honorable Terry Meza, Texas State Representative

The Honorable Victoria Neave-Criado, Texas State Representative

The Honorable Carl O. Sherman, Sr., Texas State Representative

Dallas Park and Recreation Board Members:

Estanislao Huerta, Council District 1

Fonya Mondell, Council District 2

Harrison Blair, Council District 4

Priscilla Rice, Council District 5

Timothy Dickey, Council District 6

Daniel Wood, Vice President, Council District 7

Bo Slaughter, Council District 8

Maria Hasbany, Council District 9

Robb Stewart, Council District 10

Jeff Kitner, Council District 11

Lane Conner, Council District 12

Calvert Collins-Bratton, Council District 13

Rudy Karimi, Council District 14

Arun Agarwal, Council District 15, President

Business and Dignitaries:

Consul General De Mexico Mr. Francisco de la Torre

Consulado General del Peru in Dallas Liliana Trelles

For more information on the Hispanic Heritage Celebration, including the latest list of Honorary Council members https://www.dallasarboretum.org/events-activities/hispanic-heritage-celebration/

A special thanks to the following sponsors:

Presenting Sponsor: Bank of America

Silver: ExxonMobil

Bronze: American Airlines

Friend: Frost Bank, McDonald’s of North Texas

Supporter: Silva, Mejia & Delgado; Lira Bravo Law

Patron: Dallas College, Regional Hispanic Contractors Association, Azteca-Omega Group, Jaime Ramon

Media sponsor: TELEMUNDO 39 and NBC 5.

**As of print date. Check the website for the latest list.

In addition to Hispanic Heritage Committee Chair Mario Quintanilla, additional members planning the celebration include Megan Ames, Rafael Luna, Regina Montoya and Mary Silva.

Tickets:*

Thanks to a generous donation from the Kelley Family, admission to the Rory Meyers Children's Adventure Garden is complimentary for the weekend of Sept 10th- 11th with a paid garden ticket. General garden admission is $10 for adults, seniors 65 and older and children 2-12. Admission is free for Arboretum members and children under two. Parking is $11. 

About the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden:

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218. The Arboretum is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department. WFAA, Channel 8 is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum.  The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum. For more information, visit www.dallasarboretum.org.

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Don Tortellini

Summer at the Arboretum features a new exhibition with the talented Don Tortellini, a documentarian and photographer. The exhibit opened on Juneteenth with a reception with the artist and runs through July 24th. Tortellini had his family in attendance and dedicated the exhibit to his father, a fitting tribute being Father’s Day as well as Juneteenth. Called Faces of Dallas and The Village, the exhibition is on display in the DeGolyer House, and entry is included with paid garden admission. In July, admission is only $5 per person for those two years old and up. Tickets can be pre-purchased online.

Tortellini combines immersive photography with raw storytelling to create a fine art experience through his alluring photographs. Two bodies of work are on display: Faces of Dallas, where he humanizes and contextualizes the homeless experience in Dallas through photography; and The Village, a photo series preserving the people, culture and history of an underserved and often underrepresented community. Both works are on acquisition, and proceeds go directly to philanthropic causes of his choice.

Summer at the Arboretum, which runs through August 14, also includes music, food, custom mural art murals by local artists Alli Koch, MOM, Will Heron and Favio Moreno, who have created Birds in Paradise-inspired works. A highlight, carried over from Dallas Blooms, includes a massive pair of 13-foot-tall floral peacocks featuring ornately planted tails measuring more than 36 feet across. According to U.S. News & World Report, the Dallas Arboretum is one of the “21 Top Things to Do in Texas.”

Advanced timed tickets are required for entry to the Arboretum by calling 214-515-6615 or visiting the website at https://www.dallasarboretum.org/ Visit dallasarboretum.org or social media sites for the latest information. 

 The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218. The garden is also home of the nationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. It is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Daytime admission is $16 for adults, $14 for seniors 65 and older, $10 for children 2-12, and free for Arboretum members and children under two. Parking is $11 purchased online. July admission is $5 for those 2 and up. The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum.  The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department. WFAA, Channel 8 is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum.  Timed tickets are required and can be purchased online at www.dallasarboretum.org or by calling 214-515-6615.

 

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Dallas Arboretum's Black Heritage Celebration Gerard Monsivaiz, John Spriggins, Linda Todd, Regina Montoya, Will McDaniel

The Dallas Arboretum held its second annual Black Heritage Celebration (BHC), presented by Bank of America, on May 14 and 15.  The weekend featured a curated collection of local Black artists, dozens of Black-owned businesses, an “Art of Fashion” show, and a designer and entrepreneurial showcase with panel discussions. Dallas Black Dance Theatre and the Bishop Arts Theater Center performed, and Don Diego Band and Clover the Violinist entertained the guests.  

The Black Heritage Celebration planning host committee included Linda Todd (chairperson), Marissa Horne, Tiffaney Hunter, Janet Jack, Katrina Keyes, Willow Sanchez, Celia Walker, Maurice West and Z.L. Williams.

This year’s honorary council were LaJuana Barton; Trudy Bourgeois; Dr. Chandra Brown; Neisha Strambler Butler and Rev. Richie Butler; Stephanie and Rev. Bryan Carter; Mahisha Dellinger; Sharron Evans-Jackson; Dr. Arlene J. Ford; LaChon Jacobs; Dean Jones; The Honorable Raquel Jones; April Leonard; Wilton Munnings; Venita and Tim Owens; Christopher P. Reynolds; The Honorable Toni Rose; Rodriqua Ross; Deidre and James Summers; Kimberly Bizor Tolbert.

Sponsors:

Presenting Sponsor: Bank of America

Silver: Curls/Beauty By Imagination, ExxonMobil Corporation

Bronze: AT&T; McDonald’s

Friend: Capital One Bank, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. - Alpha Xi Omega Chapter

Supporting: Dallas Chapter of the Links, Inc.; Debra Hunter Johnson

Patron: Helena L. Banks, Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness; Cynthia Watkins Clanton; Dr. Flaxie Fletcher and Dr. Cristi Fletcher; Dr. Arlene J. Ford; HomeLight; House of Dasha; Law Office of Camille Stearns Miller; Tim and Venita Owens.

Media sponsors: The Dallas Weekly, Texas Metro News and Radio One.

About the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden:

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218. The garden is also home of the nationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. It is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Daytime admission is $16 for adults, $14 for seniors 65 and older, $10 for children 2-12, and free for Arboretum members and children under two. Parking is $11 purchased online.  The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum.  The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department. WFAA, Channel 8 is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum.  Timed tickets are required and can be purchased online at www.dallasarboretum.org or by calling 214-515-6615.

 

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Janak Narayan

Artscape at the Dallas Arboretum, a juried fine art and fine craft show and sale, returns on Saturday, April 30 and Sunday, May 1. Now in its 15th year, Artscape features more than 110 juried artists who will display their unique and one-of-a-kind creations throughout the Jonsson Color Garden and Lakeside Exhibit Area. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days (member early hours begin at 7 a.m.), and entrance is included with paid garden admission. Timed tickets are required and can be purchased online or by calling 214-515-6615 during the week.

Mary Brinegar, Dallas Arboretum president and CEO, said, “It is fitting that it’s our 15th year, and we have artists represented from 15 different states including Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Wyoming and, of course, Texas. Plus, Travel+Leisure just published that our “Texas Flower Festival May be the Most Beautiful Springtime Destination in the U.S. We agree and think the outdoor garden is the perfect backdrop for Artscape and the talented artists showing their creative work.”

Artscape features some new artists and a variety of mediums including metal, 2D and 3D mixed media, painting, ceramics, fiber, glass, drawing/pastel, photography, sculpture, wood and jewelry.

Special thanks to Brett Dyer, M.F.A., B.F.A., Professor at North Lake Campus of Dallas College; Nicole Foran, Chair, Department of Studio Art, University of North Texas; and Jo Hopper who served as the Artscape Jury Committee. The group remarked that this show features some of “the best of the best” of art submitted.

In addition to the art, there is also music, fine wine and craft beer and concessions, which  include El Chifrijo, Fletcher’s Corny Dogs, Gil’s Elegant Catering, Greenville Avenue Pizza Co., The Butcher’s Son, Wetzel Pretzel.

To learn more or see a list of artists, visit https://www.dallasarboretum.org/events-activities/artscape/

Finally, for children and their families, the Rory Meyers Children’s Garden has planned special events, labs and programs tied into Artscape with the fitting theme, Art-astic. See below for schedule, and for more information, visit https://www.dallasarboretum.org/visitor-information/gardens-and-pavilions/childrens-adventure-garden/.

Daily Programs

4/25-5/1 STEM Stops 

12:00 p.m. Fibonacci Fun at the Exploration Center Plaza

1:30 p.m. It’s the Pond Life: Live pond investigation at Texas Native Wetlands

3:30 p.m. Symmetrical Sights at the Exploration Center Plaza

Walne Family Discovery Lab 

4/25-5/1 Shiny Shimmer

Exploration Center 

Daily: 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m.

Some birds are attracted to shiny things! In this lab, we will explore reflection and refraction and why birds like shiny objects.

OmniGlobe 

4/25-5/1 Starry Night

Exploration Center 

Daily  11:30 a.m. OmniOutlook 

Current weather and space events

Puppet Story Time  

4/30-5/1  Marvelous Metamorphosis
The Glade 

10:30 a.m.   

Join Olivia as she discovers that some critters go through metamorphosis!

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218. The garden is also home of the nationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. It is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Daytime admission is $16 for adults, $14 for seniors 65 and older, $10 for children 2-12, and free for Arboretum members and children under two. Parking is $11 purchased online.  The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum.  The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department. WFAA, Channel 8 is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum.  Timed tickets are required and can be purchased online at www.dallasarboretum.org or by calling 214-515-6615.

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Food and Wine Natalie Dossett, Caroline Gehan, Chef Sharon Van Meter

On a spring day during the height of Dallas Blooms, Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden held its fifth annual Food & Wine Festival, presented by Dallas Southwest Osteopathic Physicians. Held on March 24th, this food-filled festival showcased more than 30 top local chefs serving their delicious dishes and desserts, along with wines, beers and cocktails. VIP guests attended a special reception at A Tasteful Place and noshed on bites from Chef John Tesar of Knife Dallas, Chef Junior Borges of Meridian, Chef Mark Tungcmittrong of Sushi Rock and Chef Sharon Van Meter of Beckley 1115. Co-chairs were community leaders, Natalie Dossett and Caroline Gehan, and Chef Chair Sharon Van Meter of Beckley 1115.

Special thanks to Food and Wine sponsors:

Presenting Sponsor: Dallas Southwest Osteopathic Physicians

Additional Sponsors: GFO Home, Rosewood Ranches Wagyu Beef, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, Park Place Dealerships, Gopuff, Amegy Bank.

About the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden:

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218. The garden is also home of the nationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. It is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Daytime festival admission is $16 for adults, $14 for seniors 65 and older, $10 for children 2-12, and free for Arboretum members and children under two. Parking is $11 purchased online.  The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum.  The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department. WFAA, Channel 8 is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum.  For more information, visit www.dallasarboretum.org.

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Robin Norcross, Jim Ryan

Friends of the Arboretum, the membership group that supports the Dallas Arboretum, had its annual dinner during the height of Dallas Blooms on March 23. About 310 guests attended and enjoyed cocktails and passed hors d’oeuvres before they enjoyed a lovely dinner with music from a classical trio. Trams gave tours throughout the garden to see the four giant peacock topiaries, part of the Dallas Blooms: Birds in Paradise, presented by Veritex Community Bank. Attendees enjoyed the 500,000 spring flowers, of which 350,000 are tulips.  

Dallas Arboretum Board Chairman Jim Ryan welcomed and thanked these special friends who provide important financial gifts and thanked Dallas Southwest Osteopathic Physicians who generously sponsored the dinner. Robin Norcross, Dallas Arboretum contributed revenue committee chair, gave a state of the garden update including a recent accolade from Travel+Leisure that said this “Texas Flower Festival May be the Most Beautiful Springtime Destination in the U.S.”

Norcross also thanked the Friends of the Arboretum committee led by Kay Fulton, chair, and committee members Brianna Brown, Kama Koudelka, Pam Porter, Carla Robinson and Stephanie Walker; and the Caroline Rose Hunt Society, the Dallas Arboretum’s highest membership level, led by Peter Dauterman, chair, along with committee members Robin Carreker, Tucker Enthoven, Patty Dedman Nail and Venise Stuart.

For more information on joining the Friends of the Arboretum, visit dallasarboretum.org or contact Angela Paetzel, Friends Manager, at 214-515-6548 or apaetzel@dallasarboretum.org.

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Friends of the Arboretum Brett and Deirdre Scharffs, Bill and Barbara Benac, Bob Thornton

The Dallas Arboretum hosted the Friends of the Arboretum at its holiday party at the historic DeGolyer House on December 7. More than 275 of this membership group that supports the garden enjoyed cocktails and dinner while seeing The Artistry of the Nativity exhibition. Special thanks to Bank of Texas, event sponsor.

The Artistry of the Nativity, part of Holiday at the Arboretum, presented by Reliant, is open through December 31, 2021. For more information, visit dallasarboretum.org.

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Mary McDermott Cook, Luci Baines Johnson, Jim Ryan

On October 26, the Dallas Arboretum hosted its Great Contributors Dinner honoring Luci Baines Johnson, daughter of President Lyndon Baines Johnson and Lady Bird Johnson. Benefiting the garden, the evening began with a cocktail hour in the Entry Plaza with country music of Texas by the Dave Alexander Band, twinkling lights and artfully arranged pumpkins.

 

The evening featured all things Texas as its theme. As guests entered, Carly Carroll sang “The Eyes of Texas Are Upon Us” and invited guests to join her. Jim Ryan, Dallas Arboretum board chairman, welcomed the 270 guests and told them that a wonderful evening awaited them.

 

Mary McDermott Cook, whose family has known the Johnson family, spoke next. She said that both she and Luci were blessed with amazing fathers and mothers. As friends, Mary and Luci have traveled together, laughed and cried together. Mary thanked hers and Luci’s parents for allowing them to be able to make an impact in Texas and the U.S.

 

Bill McIntyre, who was a page in Washington D.C., assisting U.S. Senator Lyndon Baines Johnson from Texas.  He got to know the Johnson family through attending church with them and having Sunday dinners at their home. All told, Bill and Luci have known each other for more than six decades.

 

About 270 guests enjoyed a delicious Texas White House VIP dinner including a Texas Steakhouse “wedge” salad, a duet of Bastrop Cattle Company Filet Mignon with Chicken Fried Lobster Tail, green beans and baby carrots. Dessert was a Hill Country Molten Chocolate Lava Cake with Bing Cherry Sauce.

 

After dinner, Rena Pederson, author, journalist and one of the most powerful women in the state, according to Texas Monthly, moderated a lively discussion with Luci. Luci’s career incorporates a wide range of business and philanthropic commitments having served as chairman of the board of the LBJ Holding Company. She has had a lifetime commitment to social justice, health care, education and the environment. Her accolades are numerous.  

 

Some takeaways:

Mrs. Jackie Kennedy wrote Lady Bird a letter letting her know how thrilled she was that Luci, then 13 years old, would be able to attend her first State dinner with the Sudanese leaders. Both Luci and her sister, Lynda, attended, but the parents didn’t.

 

Lady Bird had many firsts:

  • She was the first to hold the Bible for her husband’s inauguration.
  • She was the first to have a press secretary, Liz Carpenter.
  • She was the first lady to campaign on her own for LBJ.
  • She was the first to take a Whistle Stop tour through the South where he wasn’t popular.

 

Luci on her mom:

“She married a man she adored every day of her life.”

“She had his best interest at heart.”

“She loved him with all her heart.”

 

Lady Bird was a historian and a journalist along with her good friend, Margaret McDermott. In fact, LBJ gave her a video camera allowing Lady Bird to take videos documenting much of their public life.

 

On Lady Bird’s first date with LBJ, he asked her to marry him.

 

Luci remarked, “We used Margaret McDermott’s and Mary McDermott Cook’s names as verbs. You’ve been ‘Margaret McDermotted.’ You knew when they asked you something, the only answer was ‘yes’ because your horizons would be enriched and your life brightened.”

 

In addition to beautification and conservation, Lady Bird was also involved in the arts, water pollution, Ellis Island, but she was instrumental in getting Head Start started. In 1965, Luci began a lifelong commitment to Head Start, where she worked for 20 years. “Kids, given a chance, will succeed.”

 

When asked to be an honorary chair, her mother instilled in her daughters if they could give the three T’s: time, talent and treasure. If you can, then do it with gusto.

 

At the end of Lady Bird’s life, Luci spent six days a week with her, while a niece spent one day a week. Luci talked about how she valued that time of getting to be with her mom who was often helping her father in her early years.

 

After the entertaining discussion with Luci recounting plenty of stories, Jim Ryan, Shirley and Bill McIntyre and Mary McDermott Cook presented Luci with the Great Contributors Award. Luci remarked, “How honored and grateful I am that I’ve been McDermotted. How grateful I am that you’re part of my family.”

 

Special thanks to the sponsors:

Platinum: Lyda Hill Philanthropies, Shirley and Bill McIntyre; The Eugene McDermott Foundation.

 

Gold: Lisa and Mac Tichenor; Tom and Charlene Norris Family Fund; Holly and Tom Mayer & Cindy and Charles Feld.

 

Silver: Nancy Albertini and Steve Metzger; Marilyn Augur; Kathy Bishop; Joe Buskuhl; Robin and Jim Carreker and Patty and Bobby Nail; Cheryl and Steve Coke (in honor of John Dryden); Alfred and Kathryn Gilman Family Giving Fund; Holly and Phillip Huffines; Caroline L. Hunt; Carolyn and William Kelley; Julie Kosnik; Howard Meyers; Gloria and George Tarpley; Charlotte Test; Anne and Walt Waldie; Joan and Alan Walne; Marilyn and Ben Weber; Carolyn Wittenbraker-Arkay Foundation; Lynda and Mark Wolf.

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Greg and Judy Sosbee

Growing up in a gardening family, Judy Sosbee decided to volunteer at the Dallas Arboretum, along with her husband, Greg, during 2020. The Sosbees, who also like to work in their own garden, love indulging their gardening passion at the Arboretum, especially by working with visitors to the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden.  This fall, they are also co-chairing Autumn at the Arboretum, which runs September 18 to October 31, 2021.

Judy said, “Growing up, we had a backyard greenhouse with orchids, bromeliads and ferns. However, it was Greg who suggested we ‘sign up’ after I told him that the Dallas Arboretum was looking for volunteers for their Holiday Village last year. We enjoyed it so much, we decided volunteering year-round was a great idea.” Since they started volunteering in November 2020, they have clocked more than 600 hours in less than a year.

The Sosbees grew up in Garland, close to the Dallas Arboretum, and met their senior year of high school. Both attended the University of North Texas. After graduation, Judy worked as a kindergarten teacher in Garland ISD for 34 years. Greg worked in risk management, a job that took him around the globe. During their 50-year marriage, their family has grown to include a son, daughter, their spouses and three grandsons—all of whom live in the Dallas area.

At the Dallas Arboretum, they found their special volunteer area at the Children’s Adventure Garden Information Booth. When tram training became available, Greg took advantage of it and now drives a tram talking to the many visitors from around the globe. Judy said, “As a former kindergarten teacher, I enjoy being in the Exploration Center and working with kids firsthand. We also continue to volunteer together at the children’s information booth on busy weekends, and enjoy conducting volunteer training for the Children’s Garden. We are weekly volunteers who seem to always find an additional day to volunteer when help is needed.”

Judy even remarked that she loves when someone recognizes her and says to her, “You were my child’s kindergarten teacher!”  “It makes me happy to get an update on a former student.” Greg has become reacquainted with a former co-worker who also volunteers in the garden.

Greg added, “With the beautiful fall days we have in Dallas, we have a wonderful time enjoying the fresh air and all the miraculous floral and pumpkin displays. Seeing the delight in guests’ faces and enjoying the time spent with other volunteers is a rewarding experience.”

For those interested in volunteering, visit https://www.dallasarboretum.org/support/volunteer/, email volunteers@dallasarboretum.org or call 214-515-6561. For the latest Autumn at the Arboretum events and activities, visit dallasarboretum.org or the social media channels.

About Autumn at the Arboretum:

Autumn at the Arboretum, presented by Reliant, runs from September 18 to October 30 with a “Bugtopia” theme. The 16th annual fall festival features the nationally acclaimed Pumpkin Village with 20-foot-tall, decorated pumpkin houses created with more than 90,000 pumpkins, gourds and squash from the West Texas town of Floydada, which is nicknamed “the pumpkin capital of Texas.”

Autumn at the Arboretum comes alive with larger-than-life insect topiaries, fascinatingly bugged-out pumpkin houses, a maze for younger visitors and even an 18-foot-long dragonfly. Autumn at the Arboretum features breathtaking colors of fall with 150,000 fall flowers—marigolds, chrysanthemums and more throughout the 66-acre garden.

A few highlights:

  • Local popular bands play live music every weekend afternoon during the festival.
  • Seasonal daily samples highlight in-season plants in A Tasteful Place garden.
  • Insect Encounters tent features daily, hands-on experiences such as live insect demonstrations, nature art, expert chats and more.
  • Mommy and Me Mondays and Tiny Tot Tuesdays, presented by Kimberly-Clark, includes face painting, stroller fitness, a petting zoo, Kindermusik, a hay bale maze, a pumpkin patch with pumpkins for purchase and music.
  • On Family Fun Weekend, Oct. 9-10, and on Halloweekend, Oct. 30-31, the festival also includes a petting zoo and face painting for children.
  • Arboretum-led walking tours, harvesting and horticulture demonstrations round out the festival.

Guests can also visit A Tasteful Place, a 3.5-acre food, herb and vegetable garden. Weekly activities include free Monday cooking demonstrations with Dallas College Cooks along with activities throughout the week including cooking, floral and horticulture demonstrations, many of which have the “bugtopia” theme incorporated.

In addition to Reliant as the presenting sponsor, other sponsors include Park Place Dealerships, Texas Instruments, Oncor, Kimberly-Clark, C.C. Young Senior Living, Doyle and Associates, Sidley Austin, Bank of Texas and Rexel USA.

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79 Fish Eating Fish Dominic Benhura Springstone

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden will host international renowned stone sculptor, Dominic Benhura, from now to June 27 as part of its Summer of Sculpture exhibit, ZimSculpt. Benhura will give daily talks at 2 p.m. at The Marketplace (in the garden), and 25 of his exquisite statues will also be on display and are available to purchase.

 

ZimSculpt features the talent of several contemporary Zimbabwean artists with more than 100 hand-selected, exquisite sculptures artfully displayed throughout the garden. These contemporary pieces, created by the Shona people of Zimbabwe, are carved from various types of serpentine and semi-precious stone, often weighing tons, and can be as large as seven feet tall. ZimSculpt runs through August 8.

 

Known as one of the leading Zimbabwean stone sculptors, Benhura has been sculpting since he was a young boy, learning the skill from his cousin, master sculptor Tapfuman Gutsa. Benhura sold his first piece when he was 12 years old.

 

According to the ZimSculpt website, “He is in a league of his own…His work is bold and daring, and he captures balance and movement both physically and emotionally. His prime motivation is to explore new ideas, concepts, techniques and methods and to express and communicate powerfully simple ideas. Nature, family and the relationships with his children are his main inspiration for his sculptures.”

 

When he became a father, Benhura began sculpting mothers and children interacting, and these are some of his more popular pieces. He said, “These pieces don’t have faces, so they can be from any culture.”

 

Founder of Domnic’s Studio in Harare, Benhura nurtures budding artists, from young children to adults, by mentoring them and providing them work spaces. His sculptures are collected and displayed in gardens and museums around the world including Italy, Belgium, Germany and Zimbabwe. In the U.S., visitors can see his pieces at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Benson Sculpture Garden in Colorado and at the Dallas Children’s Theater. He has done one-man shows and gallery and museums shows internationally.

 

“His hammer and his chisel find the playfulness in stone,” according to TRT World.

 

Jim Ryan, Dallas Arboretum board chairman, said, “We are pleased to welcome Dominic and his fine work to the Dallas Arboretum. He’s carved a career in sculpture, and we invite the community to meet him and see his statues.”

 

Visitors may purchase any of the sculptures on display in the garden, as well as the ones created by the onsite artists in The Marketplace, which is located in the Dallas Arboretum’s Pecan Grove. A portion of the proceeds from the sales of the sculptures and items in The Marketplace supports the Dallas Arboretum.

 

ZimSculpt is supported in part by the Dallas Tourism Public Improvement District, The Dallas Mavericks and Texas Telecom Credit Union.

 

Tickets must be pre-purchased online or by calling 214-515-6615. Wearing a face covering is required for all guests 5 years of age while visiting the Dallas Arboretum, unless medically unable to do so.

 

About the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden:

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is located on the southeastern shore of White Rock Lake at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218.  The Dallas Arboretum is also the home of the internationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children's Adventure Garden. The garden is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. General admission is $15 for adults, $12 for seniors 65 and older, $10 for children 2-12 and free for Arboretum members and children under two. There is an additional cost of $3 per person for entrance into the Rory Meyers Children's Adventure Garden. On-site parking is $15; pre-purchased online parking is $10. The Dallas Morning News is the principal partner of the Dallas Arboretum.  The Arboretum is supported, in part, by funds from the Dallas Park and Recreation Department.  WFAA is an official media sponsor for the Dallas Arboretum. For more information, call 214.515.6500 or visitwww.dallasarboretum.org.

 

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Videos:

Architectural Digest (Middle East) - article

BBC - 2:35 video

MSN Xinhua News Agency - 2:04 min video

VOA (Voice of America)

VOA (Voice of America) – Reuters article

TRT WORLD (YouTube) - 6 min video 

VOA (Voice Of America) - 1:42 min video (in French)