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Father's Day

Father's day in the Children's Garden photo by Scott Elmquist

Spend time with the family in the Children’s Garden on Father’s Day. Activities include boat building and book baskets!

Dads and other caregivers deserve more than one day to feel special! That’s why we’ve created a whole weekend of fun.

Discover a weekend of outdoor adventures for the whole family with L.L. Bean Discovery School in the Garden (both days; scroll down for times and details) and enjoy laid-back activities and crafts in the Children’s Garden Saturday and live music and a cookout (food available for purchase, see the menu PDF) at Bloemendaal House on Sunday.

Saturday is a celebration of fathers as well as “man’s best friend.” Leashed dogs will be allowed in the Garden on Saturday (only).  Please read our rules and guidelines for visiting Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden with dogs.

Garden admission also includes our Butterflies LIVE! exhibit and Origami in the Garden.

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Saturday, June 16, 2018
Sunday, June 17, 2018
Event Details

jozy dog at a fidos event. Image by annie goldmanConcert and activities are free with Garden admission

Discover a weekend of outdoor adventures for the whole family with L.L. Bean Discovery Schools at the Garden. Please note clinics will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Saturday: Adventure & Dog Day
Meet in front of the Conservatory on the Rose Garden Lawn, classes are 30 minutes each.

10 a.m. – Wildlife Tracking
11 a.m. – Outdoor Adventures with Your Dog
12 p.m. – Camping With Kids
1 p.m. – Essential Knots for the Outdoors
2 p.m. – Outdoor Adventures with Your Dog

Sunday: On the Water Day
Meet under the Tree House in the Children’s Garden.

Kayaking (10 a.m., 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m.)
Instructor will cover safety, the best ways to set up a boat, and paddling techniques. Please note: a very limited number of participants (approximately 3-6 per session; times listed above) will be able to put on a personal flotation device (PFD) and paddle a kayak briefly on the lake. This is on a first-come, first-served basis; meeting area is under the Tree House in the Children’s Garden. Minimum age is 8 (14 and under with parent or guardian); kayakers must sign a liability waiver and wear a PFD. Guests may not bring their own kayaks. The lessons offer opportunities for observers on the shore to learn as well.

2 p.m. – What’s In Your Day Pack?

Saturday in the Children’s Garden|
Visitors can “Build a Better Boat”  using corks and toothpicks and test their floating power too in the Children’s Garden Breezeway.  Blankets and a basket of books will also be available under the Darlington Oak in the Grace Arents Garden for guests to stretch out, read and enjoy time together.

Sunday Only: Enjoy live music from the Jangling Reinharts at Bloemendaal House from 1 – 4 p.m.  A buffet-style cookout will also be served on the lawn at the historic Bloemendaal House from noon – 3 p.m. (for purchase).

Costa Rican clearwing (Greta oto)

The Costa Rican Clearwing (Greta oto) is just one of the many different species of butterflies that you may find in the Butterflies LIVE! exhibit.


Butterflies LIVE!

Butterflies LIVE! is an indoor exhibit filled with fun family activities for all ages. Get up close and personal as hundreds of tropical butterflies feed, flutter and take flight all around you.  The exhibit is ever-changing, so every time you visit, you’re likely to see something new.

Origami in the Garden: Art by Kevin Box

Origami in the Garden is an exhibition of larger-than-life outdoor sculpture inspired by the art of paper folding. Santa Fe artist Kevin Box collaborates with his wife, Jennifer Box and origami masters Robert J. Lang, Te Jui Fu, Michael G. LaFosse and Richard L. Alexander to celebrate the art of origami in museum quality sculpture and educational programming.

In the Garden view 16 vignettes, featuring 21 sculptures.  In the Library explore four unfolded wall hangings displayed with the four corresponding folded origami pieces.


The Garden partners with the Richmond SPCA to welcome dogs in the Garden on Saturday (only). All dogs must be leashed and current on rabies vaccinations. Please Note: We welcome dogs in the Robins Visitor Center and Conservatory, but ask that they not enter the Kelly Education Center building, WaterPlay or SandPlay areas. Leashed dogs allowed during special fidos events only.

More about the Classes

Camping with Kids

Beautiful scenery, fresh air, and starlit nights by a campfire. Family camping is a great way to unplug your family and spend time together. Our experts will share tips and gear that will help make your family outing more enjoyable.Camping with kids in tent

Essential Knots for the Outdoors

How do you tie a kayak to the roof of a car? How do you rig a rain tarp quickly? How do you tie your boat to a dock? There are a few key knots every good outdoorsperson should know. Join the experts at LL Bean to learn them.

Outdoor Adventures With Your Dog

Come join L.L.Bean for this free clinic on how to enjoy the outdoors with your dog. Learn about tips, tricks, and gear that will help better prepare you to get out on the trails with your four-legged friend.

Wildlife Tracking 101

Have you ever come upon a track in the woods and wondered who made it, or what happened? Our expert staff will teach you where to look, and how to identify the tracks and traces that animals leave behind when you find them.

Thanks to L.L.Bean Outdoor Discovery Schools for sponsoring Father’s Day Weekend at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.


cork, toothpick and paper boat









Photo Release Policy

Photography of visitors, events and activities at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden are taken for promotional and editorial use to advance the mission of the Garden. Your attendance at this event implies your consent to display and/or publish any photographs in which your image appears.

Guests who do not consent to this policy may opt out of a photo by informing the photographer.

These images become the property of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. They may be used in any and all Garden publications and media without limitation or reservation, and are not subject to compensation.