Month: March 2014

Must Do: New York Botanical Garden Orchid Show

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Spring is finally coming to NYC! That means that the New York Botanical Garden’s (NYBG) annual Orchid Show is in full swing.

NYBG is a great place to spend the afternoon with your kids. Easily accessible by Metro North, NYBG is an amazing oasis right in the middle of the Bronx, featuring 50 gardens and more than one million plants. Special events take place all year long, but none more well-known than the Orchid Show.

Key West Contemporary

This year’s theme is Key West Contemporary which takes visitors straight down to the Florida Keys. Step into the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, which has been transformed into a modernist Key West Estate Garden, and marvel at the vast array of colorful orchids which bloom amidst reflecting pools, benches and pergolas. There are thousands of orchids on display.

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Special Events:

Many special events will be taking place during the Orchid Show’s run (through April 21). Visitors can participate in a Key West Poetry Walk, which takes them through the Perennial Garden. Poems from many 20th-century poets will be on display including Elizabeth Bishop and James Merrill – both frequent Key West visitors. What a fun way to introduce your children to the art of poetry.

The NYBG will also offer special children’s programs during the run of the Orchid Show. In Little Landscapes, kids can create and take home their own terrariums, complete with rocks, moss or flowers.

The Culinary Kids Food Festival will offer hands-on activities for budding chefs, teaching kids the important relationships between plants, farms food.

The NYBG Orchid Show is a great way to introduce your kids to nature. Don’t forget to visit the gift shop where you can take home your very own orchid – provided you have a green thumb!

 

* This piece was originally published on MommyNearest.com

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O Captain! My Captain!

Although I may make fun of it from time to time, I am proud to hail from Long Island. The area is rich in history and is home to many important historical figures. One of them being Walt Whitman.

Something I’ve wanted to do for a long time is visit the Walt Whitman Birthplace site. However, as much as I visited the mall across the way that bears his name (and oh how I’ve visited it), I still had not gone to this national landmark. That finally all changed this past weekend when The Husband and I took a visit to the site.

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Whitman’s father, Walt. Sr. built the farmhouse around 1816 as a model home for the farmers in the surrounding area. Whitman was born inside the home in 1819 and the family moved out to Brooklyn four years later. The home  passed through a few owners through the years until the 1950’s when its final owner decided it needed to become a preserved landmark for the public to enjoy. Now the home has been restored to its original incarnation and it’s a great place to see.

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One of the things that struck me the most was the three lilac trees out front. They are original to the house and still blossom each and every Spring – pretty remarkable! In addition, there is a small museum on-site that features different exhibits as well as a first-edition of Leaves of Grass that Whitman self-published.

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The lilac trees will be in bloom shortly

It’s amazing what you can learn when you take the time to do so. I encourage you to discover the history in your own backyard. You’ll definitely be glad you did.

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