By Liz Potasek
Enjoy simple summer pleasures — like fireflies lighting up the sky and live outdoor music — at the Arboretum this month. We also have a day for dogs, library storytime, yoga classes, art exhibitions and more.
1. All About Dogs Day
Celebrate dogs in nature from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. June 4 at the Arboretum Dog Commons. All About Dogs Day is a perfect opportunity to walk the trails, heel for photos and meet other dog-lovers amid the beauty of our 65-acre Dog Commons. This event is open to all dog owners and their favorite four-legged friends. Visit a variety of educational booths and shop with local pet vendors at our Dog Expo while also enjoying door prizes, doga (dog yoga), pet agility demonstrations and dog-friendly contests. All About Dogs Day is $5 for Arboretum members with a dog-added memberships, $15 for Arboretum members and $30 for non-members. Children age 15 and younger are free.
2. Music in the Gardens
Starting June 5, enjoy live music throughout the summer at the Ordway Picnic Shelter. Local bands and community groups will perform on select Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair for seating. The concerts are included with Arboretum admission.
3. Biking the Arb
The Highway 5 Regional Trail – Arboretum Connection is open, providing access to the Arboretum from local bike trails. Bicyclists can ride on all roadways at the Arb and park their bikes on racks throughout the Arboretum to explore garden paths and trails on foot.
Don’t miss the 2nd annual Bike the Arb event, which features a 13.3k road race, as well as fun activities for the entire family, on July 17. Tickets are on sale now.
4. Gala at the Farm
The Gala in the Gardens, the Arboretum’s signature annual fundraising event, is back in person at the Farm at the Arb on June 16. Join us for an inspiring evening at the Arboretum featuring farm-to-table dinner, celebratory toast and lively conversation with fellow Arboretum supporters.
Find out how our new Farm at the Arb sparks discovery by connecting people, the land, and the growing of food — and how you can expand its reach!
Funds raised at the Gala are invested into the Arboretum’s 1,200 acres of gardens, plant and tree collections, model landscapes, natural areas and miles of trails. Your support propels our mission to welcome, inform and inspire almost 500,000 annual visitors through outstanding displays, protected natural areas, horticultural research and education. Ticket for the in-person event close on May 31 — so purchase your Gala tickets now.
5. Firefly Viewing Nights
Experience the magic of summer nights at the Arb with hundreds of fireflies flashing through the sky. We’re staying open late for select Firefly Viewing Nights in June and July. Bring your family and friends and marvel at the wonder of these glowing winged beetles (also known as lightning bugs). Reservations are $5 for members and children, and $20 for non-members.
6. Garden Highlights
Keep track of what’s blooming now in the Arboretum’s gardens on our Garden Highlights page. Updated weekly on Tuesdays, garden highlights features plants for their outstanding ornamental characteristics. Make a plan to see all these plants on your next visit to the Arboretum!
7. Practice Yoga
Join us for Yoga in the Gardens throughout the summer, and enjoy yoga classes led by instructors from local studios in gardens throughout the Arboretum. Spend more time in your yoga practice at our Summer Solstice Yoga Retreat on June 18. There are also a few spots left in our Full Strawberry Moon Yoga event on June 14.
8. The Eatery at the Arboretum
This new Arboretum restaurant is open daily. Stop by from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday for a selection of bakery items, soup, salads, sandwiches and more.
9. Infused with Nature: Artist Meet & Greet
Meet Ava Lambert, the artist behind the exhibition, “Infused with Nature,” from noon-2 p.m. June 4, and chat with her about her work in the Cafe Gallery. Lambert’s oil and acrylic works reflect a fleeting moment in time. “The images I portray are of subjects seen in passing, often overlooked or rarely given a second thought,” Lambert says. “I find inspiration in capturing these moments and portraying them in a new and focused light.” Her detailed paintings are photo-like representations, inviting viewers to marvel at the artistic process and inspiring new admiration for the subject of the painting. “I hope that my art leaves others with a new, more aware perspective of the everyday,” she says. Lambert’s work will be on display in the Cafe Gallery through July 17. The event is included with Arboretum admission.
10. Andersen Horticultural Library StoryTime
Join us at 10:30 a.m. on the last Friday of each month for storytime in the Andersen Horticultural Library. We’ll celebrate plants and nature and foster a love for books and reading as we explore the library’s vast catalog of children’s books. This month we will explore books about the water cycle, wetlands and why both are important to humans, other animals and to the earth at 10:30 a.m. June 24 in the Andersen Horticultural Library. This event is included with Arboretum admission.
11. Garden Travel Tours
Tour beautiful gardens from around the world with Arboretum Director Peter Moe, Arboretum Director Emeritus Peter Olin and Arboretum Director of Operations Alan Branhagen. These popular Garden Travel Tours are offered throughout the year, featuring custom itineraries, behind-the-scenes tours, local attractions and small group sizes. Upcoming tours include a trip to Michigan in September and a trip to Chile, Argentina and Patagonia in November.
12. Bird Art
Don’t miss two exhibitions featuring birds: Birds, Birds, Birds: Art Takes Flight at the Arb is on display through June 28 in the Reedy Gallery, and The Art of Flying: Bird Images from A to Z is on display through Aug. 12 in the Skyway Gallery and Andersen Horticultural Library.
The Birds, Birds, Birds show features bird-themed work in a variety of mediums from artists Brenna Busse, Georgia Kandiko, Lucy LeMay, Laura Ruprecht and James Turner.
The Art of Flying exhibition showcases two stunning bird prints for each letter of the alphabet from rare books in Andersen Horticultural Library’s collection. Featuring 52 beautifully illustrated species of birds, mostly from John Gould’s seven volume masterpiece, The Birds of Asia (1850-1883), this is a magnificent display of feathers you won’t want to miss.
13. Donate to the Friends of the Andersen Horticultural Library Book Sale
We’re accepting donations of clean, gently used books in all genres, as well as CDs and DVDs (no old textbooks, no magazines), through Aug. 31 for the Friends of the Andersen Horticultural Library Book Sale. Small loads can be brought directly to the library during normal hours (9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday). If you’d like to bring a larger load, please contact library staff at 612-301-1239 or HortLib@umn.edu.
Save the dates for this year’s Friends of Andersen Horticultural Library Book Sale on Sept. 23-25.
14. Journey through Japan: Traditional Woodblock Prints
Visit the Andersen Horticultural Library to feast your eyes upon brilliant Japanese woodblock flora and fauna art from the Edo Period (1603-1868), a time in Japanese cultural and political history of relative peace and stability. This period provides the inspiration for the Arboretum’s Japanese Garden and is characterized by the innovation of artistic techniques, such as colored woodblock printing.
All prints in this exhibition are from the Andersen Horticultural Library’s rare book collection, and many are from Honzō Zufu (Illustrated Manual of Medicinal Plants), by Iwasaki Tsunemasa (1786-1842). Tsunemasa was a Japanese botanist and samurai. Although he created these prints in the early 1800s, this work was published between 1916 and 1922. Early 19th century woodblock prints by prominent artists from various Kyoto schools of painting are also featured. The exhibition is on display through Aug. 12.
15. Fall Color Trail Run/Hike
Our popular Fall Color Trail Run/Hike is Oct. 7-9. This pick-your-time, pick-your-pace race is a perfect opportunity to enjoy the beauty of fall colors at the Arboretum. Tickets go on sale June 1.