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Thursday, June 18, 2009 10:52 am

Symphony presents Ensemble of Outdoor Living Spaces

Annual garden tour is June 20

A metal and glass wind sculpture by Seattle artist Andrew Carson highlights one of the gardens on this year's symphony garden tour.

With Father’s Day weekend approaching, the Illinois Symphony Orchestra has been blooming with anticipation for parents and children to come mark the occasion at its annual garden tour. The 20th annual fundraiser for the orchestra is this Saturday, June 20.

Tickets are $15 per adult and children are free. The tour will be held from 11-3 p.m.

The gardens are featured in five homes altogether — three in Leland Grove and two in Panther Creek. They represent the difference in the individual homeowners, said Kathryn Ransom, president of the symphony guild. Ransom, who has been president of the symphony guild for about a year, said the five gardens are diverse and have an appeal for all.

“I think if people go to all five, they will find some that will really touch their hearts,” Ransom said.

Some gardens are designed for families with children, some are more “mature,” and each garden represents “a different philosophy of life,” Ransom added. Some of the gardens feature sculptures and fountains, while others are designed for those with more practical outdoor needs.

The guild is always looking to expand and find those who share a love for music and want to help support the symphony. The fundraiser also serves as a place to attract potential members for the guild, which currently has 100 members. The goal is to have 220 members by 2010, according to Ransom.

Each year, locals and out-of-towners have traveled to be a part of the fundraiser, as it is one of the more popular events in Springfield, Evelyn Yurdin, co-chair of the garden tour said. Yurdin described this year’s exhibit as “an ensemble of outdoor living space.”

“They’re [the gardens] really are as diverse as the people who live there,” Yurdin said. “That’s what’s special about them.”

Admirers should expect to see a range of botanical artistry such as hornbeam hedges, roses, hydrangeas and more. Design for the tour is credited to the homeowners and some help is provided by Green View nursery. There will be representatives from Green View at each of the homes to help viewers identify specific kinds of plants and flowers featured in the exhibit.

In the spirit of Father’s Day weekend, the garden tour features a children’s activity. Children can have their photo taken and placed on a decorative flower to bring home for the holiday.

“I think people in the Midwest really appreciate yards and gardens, flowers and plants,” Ransom said. The tour is an ideal place for people to get ideas for their own gardens, she added. “It’s a chance to get away from the routine of a Saturday and spend a few moments thinking about beautiful things,” she said.

Proceeds benefit music students for scholarship summer programs and help support the symphony. This year’s fundraiser goal is $10,000.

Participants may begin the tour at any of these addresses: 1645 Leland, 1630 W. Laurel, 1636 W. Laurel, 4408 Turtle Bay or 4425 Turtle Bay. Tickets may be purchased at Green View Nursery, Wildbirds Unlimited and Beatty Televisual. For additional information call 546-5563 or 546-6594.

Lyndsey Taylor is from Santa Barbara, Calif., and is new to Springfield. She has studied journalism at Santa Barbara City College and is continuing her education in Illinois.

More garden events coming up

Master Gardeners’ Garden Walk

Master gardeners of the University of Illinois Extension Sangamon-Menard Unit will host a Garden Walk on Saturday, June 27, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This year’s walk includes eight Springfield gardens: Jack and Mary Altman, 700 Teal Drive; Tom Martin, 125 North Illinois; Germann gardens, 3045 South 14th St.; Graham and Ednita Murdock, 937 Feldkamp; Sherri Khile, 732 West Woodland Ave.; Rain Garden at Washington Park Botanical Garden; Dean Home Heirloom Garden at Lincoln Home Visitors Center; and Master Gardener demonstration gardens of the fairgrounds.

During the Garden Walk, master gardeners will be stationed throughout the properties to answer questions about plants. Volunteers will host an “Ask the Master Gardener Table,” to answer garden questions, at the Altmans.

Master Gardeners will also present garden programs. They include: 10 a.m., “The Great Divide” at the Murdocks; 11 a.m., “Roses: To Prune or Not to Prune?” at the Germanns; Noon, “Vegetable Gardening” at the Altmans; 1 p.m., “Water Gardening” at the Murdocks; 2 p.m., “Stepping Stone” at the Khiles; 2 p.m., “Attracting Birds” at the Altmans.

Tickets are $8 if purchased in advance, $10 the day of the walk. Tickets will be available at Lincoln Memorial Garden, Wild Birds Unlimited, Ace Hardware, Noonan TrueValue Hardware, at the University of Illinois Extension offices in Springfield and Petersburg and online. For more information, phone the Extension office, (217) 782-4617, or visit the Extension Web site www.extension.uiuc.edu/sangamonmenard.

Celebrate “Art in the Garden”

Lincoln Memorial Garden is hosting the first-ever “Art in the Garden” celebration all day Saturday, June 27. (A rain date is scheduled for June 28.) Area artists have been invited to find inspiration in Lincoln Memorial Garden.

“Art in the Garden” is free and open to garden-lovers and art-lovers alike, but the art created for the juried exhibition or created in the garden will be donated by the artists and sold at an evening reception. Profits from “Art in the Garden” will be used to maintain the historic not-for-profit garden as Jens Jensen and his supporters in Illinois’ garden clubs envisioned it.

The day begins at 8 a.m., when artists will begin setting up outdoors. At 1 p.m., younger artists are invited to create their own Andy Goldsworthy-type art using natural materials from the garden. The day will conclude with a reception in the Nature Center for artists and the public from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. A live auction of the art created that day and a silent auction of the juried art will be held during the reception.

Lincoln Memorial Garden is at 2301 East Lake Shore Drive, Springfield.

— Jennifer Fishburn


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