The Philadelphia Flower Show is a grown-up gardener’s paradise, and it can be a wonderland of discovery and delight for children as well. The larger-than-life displays offer a unique setting in which to engage youngsters in the beauty of the natural world and ignite a lifelong passion for its precious plant life. The theme for the Flower Show this year is “Passport to the World”.
My daughter and I had the pleasure of visiting The Philadelphia Flower Show on opening day, Sunday, February 28th. We woke up early Sunday morning and hopped on the good old R5 and headed to the Convention Center. I love the ease of public transportation when traveling into the city. Once we arrived in Philadelphia we started the moring off with an unbelievable brunch sponsored by Fisher Price on the 33rd floor of the beautiful Loew’s Hotel.
Amazing view from the 33rd floor!
My sister and her boyfriend went with us and while he was waiting watching the chef make his custom omlet he turned to me and said that the spread set out for us was the best he had ever seen. The folks at Fisher Price and The Loew’s Hotel went all out! Thank You!
After brunch we headed back to the Convention Center to journey around the globe with breathtaking stops in India, Brazil, the Netherlands, South Africa, New Zealand and Singapore. We saw thousands of plant and floral design entries of local enthusiasts in hundreds of categories. My daughter and I both agreed that the South African themed display by American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD), was “really cool”…My daughter is 5 and “really cool” is tops in her book.
We also loved the lion standing gaurd over the South African exhibit.
Another favorite of ours was life-size elephant in the Indian wedding-inspired exhibit by Jamie Rothstein Floral Design…I don’t know how they did it, but WOW!
Show organizers have arranged a specially priced $65 Family Fun Pack of discounted tickets offering two adults and two children admission to the Show and free membership in the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society. Students ages 17-24 can purchase tickets for $18 for any day (must have valid student ID; proof of age). Family Fun Pack and Student tickets are available online this year!
Shoppers – find a bustling Marketplace with an array of take-home products to get the garden started, the official Flower Show Shoppe with 2010 Show merchandise, and a World Bazaar of beautiful and exotic crafts and products.
Foodies will love the International Wine and Spirits Garden, presented by the PA Wine & Spirits Stores and the International Dessert and Coffee Bar.
Complementing the fabulous exhibits, shopping and great food will be live performances, provided by World Café Live that take audiences to Bollywood, Africa and South America.
Children love to dance, and this year they’ll sway to the music of Bollywood. Performances by dancers and musicians from India and Brazil happen on the Explorer’s Stage in the exhibition hall.
Nourishing the soul and the stomach are two of the great joys of gardening. Kids learn how gardening can help people in the interactive Camden Children’s Garden display, inspired by “soup and salad” and the vegetable gardens that help feed Camden residents. In the PHS Village kids can learn first-hand how to create a home vegetable garden.
Attention Girl Scouts! If your child is a Girl Scout who is 17 years of age or younger and comes to the Show in her Scout uniform on Sunday, March 7, she will be admitted to the Show for $7. Girl Scouts Day at the Show is a time to celebrate the achievements of Scouts who have participated in the new Pennsylvania Horticultural Society patch program, “Planting Seeds, Growing Lives.”
Special Priced Girl Scouts Day tickets ($7) are available on Sunday, March 7 only at the Show Box Office.
Children won’t want to miss the special youth entries (18 years and younger) in the intricate pressed plants category. The theme of this competition is Garden Friends. Also, look for animal topiaries; the weird and the wonderful winners in the plant competitions; and entries by local teens including Lower Merion High School’s front porch, Abington Senior High School’s front porch, Harrington High School’s window box, and Lower Cape May Regional High School’s “succulent scene” window box.
When it’s time to play, take a break in the enjoyable Family Lounge for parents and toddlers. Open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Family Lounge is located just outside the Show exhibition halls in Room 203. The folks from Fisher Price ® are on hand this year to hand out goody bags, play games, and provide play areas in the Lounge. Children must be accompanied by adults.
If you plan to capture all the fun in photographs, camera batteries and disposable cameras are available for sale at the official Flower Show Shoppe in the center of the exhibition halls. There’s also a special DVD of the 2010 Show, along with keepsakes for the whole family.
Have fun at the Flower Show and THINK SPRING!