Archive for December, 2008

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I am so excited that I already have my New Year’s Eve day planned. I will be spending it here at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, kicking off the celebration of the Garden’s 25 years.   And, what makes me even happier is that one of my favorite local bands, the Ululating Mummies, will be performing and leading the kid-friendly celebration.  


The New Year’s Eve Family Frolic is Wednesday, December 31st, from 1-4 p.m. and is included with regular Garden admission, or free for members.   You won’t even have to get cold, as this event is INSIDE!

Ring in the new year with fun family activities in the afternoon! 

Activities include:

  • A live concert by the Ululating Mummies (always a favorite with kids and adults!)
  • Balloon artists
  • Face painters
  • The chance to make-and-take a noisemaker

Guests to the New Year’s Eve Family Frolic may stay and enjoy GardenFest of Lights (5 – 10 p.m.) Guests arriving after 4 p.m. will have to purchase a GardenFest ticket. For those interested in dining on New Year’s Eve, the Garden Cafe is open from 10 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. The Garden Shop is also open 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.

As I mentioned he New Year’s Eve Family Frolic kicks off the Garden’s celebration of its 25th anniversary in 2009.  And let me tell you, we have some great things planned, including the return of Butterflies LIVE!  in May. I’m sure you’ll be hearing much more about those from me in the near future, but if you just can’t wait, you can learn more about 25th anniversary activities here.

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bigmama Photo via Flickr

I didn’t know that Virginia’s largest tree was 80 miles southeast of Richmond. And I didn’t know that the 123-foot-tall and 12-1/2 foot-wide tree was 1,000 years old or older.  But the Washington Post reported this week that the ancient bald cypress died recently after a year of declining health.  It seems that its passing is worthy recognizing in a time when so many things are short lived. Yes 1,000 years seems like an incredible accomplishment in today’s world.  I only wish I had ventured to see it before it died.

Dubbed Big Mama, the largest tree in Virginia towered over Cypress Bridge, a swamp in the Nottoway River. The 40 acres of virgin wilderness is so remote, the tree’s existence wasn’t reported until 2005.

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Henrico County is opening a new community garden  near the intersection of Vale Street and Michael Avenue in Lakeside, according to the North Richmond News.  The garden is open to Henrico Couty residents only.

Here are the details:

Henrico families who have wanted to grow their own fresh vegetables but previously lacked the space, know-how or resources can now start planting, with the help of the Henrico County Extension Office
and its new program, “Gardens Growing Families.” Qualifying participants can maintain a plot in the Fairfield District community garden for a nominal fee, attend free classes and have access to expert advice from the Extension Office and Henrico Master Gardeners.

… Gardens Growing Families allows participants to choose a full-size garden plot (15 feet by 20 feet) for a $10 annual fee or a half-size plot (15 feet by 10 feet) for $5 annually. Currently space is available for approximately 20 family gardens.

Tools and water will be provided at the site, located at the intersection of Vale Street and Michael Avenue, near Lakeside Avenue. Participants also can attend a variety of free classes and workshops on gardening, food preparation, nutrition and other topics.

Residents must apply and meet income requirements to participate in Gardens Growing Families. The program is open to any Henrico family; however, Fairfield District residents will receive priority consideration for plots in the Fairfield community garden. The Extension Office ultimately hopes to expand the program to each magisterial district. Gardens Growing Families represents the efforts of several county agencies, including Extension, Recreation and Parks, Social Services and Health.

To obtain an application or additional information, contact the Henrico Extension Office at 501-5160 or log on to www.co.henrico.va.us/extension

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