On May 16, the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden kicks off Summer at the Arboretum, sponsored by Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate, CBRE and Mutual of Omaha Bank, with the return of “Flower Houses: Fairy Tales with a Texas Twist.” Continuing the year-long “Deep in the Hearts of Texans” theme, the flower village features four topiary houses up to 15-feet-tall enveloped in red, white and blue flowers. Each house highlights a Texas-inspired fairy tale vignette—a picante gingerbread man dances around a babbling brook; Goldilocks’ irascible cousin finds herself behind the Pine Curtain, and stubborn livestock starts a chain of events causing a kerfuffle across the prairie.*
Summer at the Arboretum also includes a replica of the Rio Grande, a western covered chuck wagon, two life-size topiary horses, two large topiary longhorn cattle, affectionately named “Lone Star” and “Blue Bonnet,” and a hay bale maze. All summer long there will be activities, events and music for garden guests to enjoy.
Visitors are encouraged to visit the eight-acre Rory Meyer’s Children’s Adventure Garden and experience the exciting labs and hands-on activities where science and fun become one.
Dave Forehand, Dallas Arboretum’s vice president of gardens, said, “As the days get warmer, look for the houses to transition to lush foliage displays of ipomoea sedans bronze, ipomoea desana lime, coleus burgundy trailing plum and ipomoea tricolor. For the first time ever, you’ll see true ‘green houses’ nestled under the welcoming shade of the trees in Pecan Grove.”
He added, “In the gardens, the beds are bursting with plants full of blooms like ageratum, impatiens, petunias, cleome, begonias, salvia, marigolds and zinnias. As the temperatures warm, caladiums, sunpatiens, lantana, pride of Barbados, variegated tapioca, elephant ears, coleus will be added to the gardens.”
Activities include the following:
Memorial Day Weekend: Friday, May 22-Monday, May 25
Celebrate Memorial Day weekend at the Dallas Arboretum.
-In the Pecan Grove, children of all ages can enjoy a petting zoo and face painting all weekend long from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
-On Friday, May 22, families can decorate strollers and wagons from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. for the Memorial Day Stroller and Wagon Parade that starts at 1 p.m. at the Alex Camp House. Prizes will be awarded.
-On Monday, May 25 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., there are two Eddie Coker concerts, at the Martin Rutchik Concert Stage & Lawn. Cost is free with paid garden admission. The concerts are sponsored by DallasChild.
-Guests can enjoy $2 hot dogs and root beer floats in certain locations in the garden as well as patriotic music all weekend.
-Admission is free all four days for all active and retired military personnel and first responders with valid photo ID at the ticket booth.
Stories in the Flower Village
Mondays: June 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Tuckered out from Toad Fountain? Parents, grandparents and caregivers are invited to bring young readers and pre-readers for storytime under the shade of the flower houses in the Pecan Grove.
Family Fun Fridays
June 5, 12, 19 & 26 and July 3, 10, 17, 24 & 31
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Plan the family’s summertime adventures at the Arboretum on Fridays in June and July in the Pecan Grove. Join other families for kid-friendly activities that include face painting, a petting zoo and music for the little ones in the shady Pecan Grove—topped off with a cool spray of water in the Toad Fountains! Bring everyone to experience the internationally acclaimed Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden featuring the wonders of life and earth science combined with hands-on fun for all ages.
Sunday, June 7
Debbie Leland Book Reading and Signing, 1-3 p.m. Pecan Grove
Debbie Leland reads selections of The Jalapeño Man, a most spicy tale. An elementary school librarian from College Station, she has authored several children’s books, all with a recognizable southwest flavor.
Wednesdays, June 10 and June 24
“Golden Hour at the Dallas Arboretum”, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
$10 non-members, $8 members
For these two evenings in June, the Dallas Arboretum opens its doors at special pricing to allow the community to capture those ‘golden hour’ photos in the showcase gardens. Intended for personal photography and portraiture, the garden is open for a limited window to allow for bridal portraits, family photos, and hobby photographers.
Commercial shoots are not allowed during this time and are encouraged to book through the Special Events Department.
Saturday, June 13**
WFAA Family First Day in the Rory Meyers Children’s Garden
Activities 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Puppet shows, hands-on outdoor science experiments (in conjunction with Texas A&M University), collaborative tessellation assembly, and scenes from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (with the Dallas Junior Players) round out a family-centered day anchored by a special presentation with WFAA Meteorologist Greg Fields at the OmniGlobe. For this day, admission to the RMCAG and main garden is $8 at the gate only with $8 parking available for advance purchase online. Hot dogs are just $2.
Father’s Day Weekend: June 20 and 21
Saturday, June 20, 1:00-2:30 p.m.
Father’s Day Weekend Concert
Multilingual Balladeer Frank Obregon on the Martin Rutchik Concert Stage & Lawn
Enjoy an eclectic spectrum of music from Tony Bennett to Nat King Cole, and Antonio Carlos Jobim to Sinatra. Relax with dad (on a lawn he doesn’t tend!), sip his favorite beverage, and maybe take a twirl around the stage!
Sunday, June 21, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Children, grandchildren and their dads and granddads are invited to the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden for a craft activity—constructing and painting flower pots and bird houses—hosted by Home Depot. First come, first served.
Sunday, June 21, 1 p.m.-3 p.m.
Bring the superman in the family to the Arboretum to enjoy classic superhero cartoons shown in the air-conditioned comfort of Rosine Hall. On Father’s Day, Rosine is open for a come-and-go, blankets welcome viewing of vintage cartoons that can be enjoyed by the young and young-at-heart. Each short is approximately 10 minutes. There is no additional cost with paid entry to the garden, and popcorn and snacks are available onsite.
Fourth of July Celebration
Thursday, July 2 – Dallas Winds
Gates 6 p.m. Concert 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.
The last concert of the spring/summer Cool Thursdays Concert Series features the patriot songs of the Dallas Winds. Enjoy a colorful summer sunset, the music and a picnic overlooking White Rock Lake. The Dallas Winds is the leading professional civilian wind band in the United States. Comprised of 50 woodwind, brass and percussion players, the band performs an eclectic blend of musical styles ranging from Bach to Bernstein and Sousa to Strauss. The costume contest is to come dressed as "Lady Liberty or Uncle Sam" in the best and brightest red, white and blue outfit. Separate tickets, which are between $10 and $27, are required and available online. The concert is sponsored by Retirement Rescue Advisors LLC.
Fourth of July Weekend Activities
Friday, July 3-Monday, July 6
Continuing the celebration of the nation’s independence in true red, white and blue style, active and retired members of the esteemed armed services receive free admission on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Patriotic music and flags throughout the garden add to the festivities.
Friday, July 24
Dallas Arboretum Presents: Garden Gigs, 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.
For the first time ever, the Dallas Arboretum hosts a full-grounds musical event open to the general public. Local artists/musicians Salim Nourallah, John Lefler, Camille Cortinas and Sudie perform intimate sets at sundown in several gardens. Food trucks and BYOB round out a community event with tickets starting at $7 with parking included.
Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden
In the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden, there are plenty of activities for the young and young-at-heart including daily labs, talks and more. Check website for daily events.
May 16: Where is Pidge? Storytime and book signing with Michelle Staubach Grimes at 10:30 a.m. with special activities for children.
May 23: Girl Scouts in the Garden. Girl Scouts Troop #897 lead special activities for paid guests such as story time, leaf rubbings and scavenger hunts.
May 22-May 25: The garden debuts its brand new puppet show, Finding My Way Home, recorded by students from O’Banion Middle School.
June 13: WFAA Family First Day with activities from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. See ** for more information.
June 21, 2015: On Father’s Day from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, Home Depot hosts a craft activity with flower pots and bird houses to construct and paint. First come, first served.
June 1-July 31: Popular Plant Lab H2Osmosis
August 1-31: Popular Plant Lab Back to School Mash
Mary Brinegar, president and CEO of the Dallas Arboretum, said, “The Dallas Arboretum is beautiful year-round, and the summer plantings are some of the loveliest for all to enjoy, along with a myriad of activities for everyone.”
See the website for special discounts and details, subject to availability. 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. It is open daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Regular general admission is $15 for adults, $12 for seniors 65 and older, $10 for children 3-12 and free for Arboretum members and children two and under. See website for special discounts. 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 $8. 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 visit www.dallasarboretum.org.
*Books include Zeke and the Longhorn by David Davis; The Jalapeño Man by Debbie Leland; and Dusty Locks and the Three Bears by Susan Lowell.