Give Mom an entire garden for Mother’s Day
May 9, 2012 3:44PM
where to find vouchers
The voucher for free admission to participating gardens is available online through the Better Homes and Gardens website at
www.bhg.com when you supply an email address and some basic information. Each voucher is good for two admissions. The
site says additional copies of the voucher will be accepted for larger groups.
Thinking of giving Mom flowers for Mother’s Day? You could give her a whole garden, plus some family time, if you visit International Friendship Gardens in Michigan City.
“Mother’s Day has been the traditional opening for International Friendship Gardens for many years,” said Nancy Barnes, administrative coordinator. “Moms are admitted free and, if the weather continues, it will be absolutely gorgeous — Mother Nature at her best.”
The garden covers more than 100 acres and has manicured flower beds, trails through the woods and along the creek, a prairie, a small lake, celebration and education areas, and many ethnic heritage gardens.
Since the garden’s inception, foreign government officials and local ethnic groups have contributed plants, sculptures and other artifacts representing their heritage. The gardens were inspired by the 1933 Century of Progress World’s Fair in Chicago, and by the fair’s sentiments of international peace and friendship.
“It’s such a peaceful, wonderful place to come,” Barnes said. “The ducks have returned to Lake Lucerne, and the birds are so happy and just singing away.
“With all the rain and warmth, the flowers are popping. It’s a beautiful place to visit and a wonderful time to visit. Come for a walk or bring a picnic.”
She said the gardens also offer rides on a “people mover” (golf cart) for those with walking difficulties. There are picnic tables and a covered pavilion, and beverages and snacks are available at the greeter’s pavilion. Visitors also are welcome to bring chairs and picnic blankets.
International Friendship Gardens is at 2055 E. U.S. 12, about 11/2 miles east of City Hall.Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Moms are admitted free on Mother’s Day, and children age 11 and younger get in for free. Regular admission is $4 for adults, with a maximum of $10 per family.
National Public Gardens Day
Friday, May 11, also will be a great day to visit a garden. That is National Public Gardens Day, with online vouchers available for free admission to participating gardens, including several locally.
Taltree Arboretum and Gardens, 450 W. County Road 100N, Valparaiso, will offer free tours, children’s activities, demonstrations and information sessions from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., all in celebration of National Public Gardens Day.
Fernwood Botanical Gardens and Nature Preserve, 13988 Range Line Road, Niles, Mich., also is participating and will offer tours at 11 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m. (CDT), plus the presentation “Why Public Gardens Matter” at 11:30 a.m.
Participating gardens in the Chicago suburbs include the Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake-Cook Road, Glencoe (open from
8 a.m. to sunset); Cantigny Park and Gardens, 1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton (open from
7 a.m. to sunset), and the Morton Arboretum, 4100 Illinois 53, Lisle (open from 9 a.m. to