Garvan Woodland Gardens Hosts Spring Concerts, 'Landscape for Life' Course, Photography Exhibit

Azaleas bloom this spring at Garvan Woodland Gardens in Hot Springs.
Garvan Woodland Gardens

Azaleas bloom this spring at Garvan Woodland Gardens in Hot Springs.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. — Garvan Woodland Gardens will celebrate sound as well as beauty with two concerts this month, along with a "Landscape for Life" course, a photography exhibit and a slate of classes and activities for all ages.

The annual "Ringers of Hope Mother's Day Handbell Concert" will be held at 3 p.m. May 13 in the Anthony Chapel. The handbell choirs from Ouachita Hills Academy will perform.

The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra will be in concert at 3 p.m. May 20 in the Anthony Chapel. Members of the string chamber will perform various pieces, including music from "Little Red Riding Hood" and "The Emperor's New Clothes." The concert will feature the Platypus Players and other symphony musicians. 

The May art exhibit will feature photography by Chris Franklin, on display May 1-31 in the Magnolia Room. Franklin's primary focus is nature and wildlife photography, but he also enjoys action photos, such as horses running the home stretch at Oaklawn Racing and Gaming in Hot Springs.

"Landscape for Life" will be held from 9:30 a.m. to noon each Thursday in May in the Magnolia Room. Based on a curriculum developed by the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and the United States Botanic Garden, the class will assist participants in embracing sustainable practices while improving or developing a property. Over the five-session series, each participant will produce a design project with help from instructors. Local industry professionals will speak. More information is available at

The Arkansas Forestry Commission lecture series concludes with "Tree ID Lecture and Hike" from 2-4 p.m. May 24, starting in the Magnolia Room.

"Children's Art Days" will continue from 9 a.m. to noon May 5 and June 2 in the Weyerhaeuser Bonsai Learning Center. Ginger Ladehoff, local artist and nature enthusiast, will provide individualized instruction in various painting techniques, with students drawing inspiration from the garden. Students will leave with a finished work of art. The class is geared for children 12 and younger. Children younger than 8 require parental supervision.

The "Homeschool Focus" class on "Build a Butterfly Garden and Feeder" will be held from 10-11 a.m. May 16 and from 2-3 p.m. May 19 in the Bonsai Learning Center. The class is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and provides children with hands-on learning.

A "Critter Crawl" will be held from 7-9 p.m. May 18 in the garden. Lydell Lively, Garvan naturalist, will lead a night hike observing the sights and sounds of the garden's nocturnal community.

The tai chi series "Strength in Motion" continues from 2-3 p.m. each Thursday through June 28 on the Great Lawn and at Garvan Pavilion. The Oaklawn Center on Aging hosts the series on the ancient, low-impact practice of tai chi, which increases flexibility, balance and strength. Loose, comfortable clothing and comfortable footwear are recommended.

"Group Health Walks" will continue at 9 a.m. three days a week through June 29. On Mondays, Sharon Turrentine will lead a three-mile walk in 52 minutes. On Wednesdays, Dee Garrett will lead a two-plus-mile walk at a comfortable, conversational pace. On Fridays, Ginger Ladehoff will lead a two-plus-mile walk at a challenging pace. Groups meet first in the Welcome Center, and pets and strollers are welcome.

The Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design will present Design Camp in the Garden the week of June 25-29. Design camp offers students the opportunity to learn through hands-on projects, tours, presentations and discussions led by architecture, landscape architecture and interior design faculty of the Fay Jones School. Registration for the camp runs through May 25, at a cost of $250 for Garvan Gardens members or $350 for the general public. Need-based and partial scholarships are available. The camp is open to students going into ninth through 12th grades this fall. For more information, contact Judy Stone at or 479-575-2399.

Garvan Woodland Gardens is the botanical garden of the University of Arkansas and part of the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design. The garden is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Admission is $15 for adults, $5 for children ages 4-12 and free for children ages 3 and younger. Some events and activities are free. Some require a fee, advanced registration or prepayment. 

For more information about these events or to check on upcoming events, call 501-262-9300 or 800-366-4664. 


Bettina M. Lehovec, communications writer
Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design

Michelle Parks, director of communications
Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design


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