The Lung Association presents
The Stratford Garden Festival is fifteen years old and it’s still “Blooming Beautiful”! This annual celebration of all things gardening continues to draw people from across southern Ontario and win praise for the caliber of the show. In fact, the Stratford Garden Festival was honoured to be named 2014 “Festival of the Year” by the Canadian Garden Tourism Council. This success is shared by all the dreamers and planners, landscapers and exhibitors, sponsors and volunteers past and present whose efforts have created such a wonderful longstanding event and important fundraiser for The Lung Association.
Presented by The Lung Association and sponsored by Orr Insurance and Investment, The Stratford Garden Festival is now celebrating its 15th anniversary. Since its beginning in 2001, a net of more than $800,000 has been raised through this event to support The Lung Association in its medical research commitments and lung health initiatives around asthma and COPD, such as the Asthma Action Program, BreathWorks and Your Healthy Home. With as many as one in five people in the province living with some kind of breathing problem, the work of The Lung Association is more important than ever.
Eight gardens will showcase the talent and creativity of area landscapers and offer inspiration for the gardening season ahead. Visitors will discover ideas to apply to their own gardens - from water features to the use of colour and form, from designing a quiet green oasis to creating a modern setting for outdoor entertaining – and meet some of the experts who can assist them in creating that magic at home.
Richard Ivey of Richard’s Lawn and Garden Care is placing a vintage 1926 Model T car as the focal point of his garden while Sebringville Garden Centre will create a fairy glen of leafy ferns and cool moss, the perfect home for magical inhabitants.
A number of beautifully-designed planters on display in the lobby will create a sense of anticipation and greet visitors with a “Blooming Beautiful” taste of spring.
The Stratford Garden Festival offers a Marketplace bursting with items to tempt the garden enthusiast. From the latest in plants and seeds to hand-crafted pottery, from garden accessories to whimsical bird houses, and from metal work to local honey and jams, there is something to suit every taste and budget. The Marketplace will feature a number of exhibitors new to the Stratford Garden Festival in 2015 as well as many returning favourites.
The Speaker Series
Everyone from the gardening novice to the seasoned green thumb will learn something at the ongoing Speaker Series where Ontario’s top garden gurus will give you the real dirt on gardening.
Frank Ferragine (aka “Frankie Flowers”) of Breakfast Television will share his thoughts on “The Crazy World of Gardening”.
Carson Arthur of HGTV’s show, Critical Listings, will advise on where best to invest your gardening and landscaping dollars in “Growing Your Investment”, Sean James will discuss the planning that goes into “Maturing a Garden”, and Miriam Goldberger will share her expertise on “Taming Wildflowers”.
Garden writer and columnist David Hobson will speak about “Great Plants, Great Gardens” while Garden Making Magazines’s Beckie Fox will get people off to a great start with her presentation “New Garden? What To Do First”.
Other presentations over the four days include “The 7 Habits of Highly Successful Vegetable Growers”, “Preserving Your Produce”, “Seed Saving 101”, “Growing Gourmet”, “Mini Hosta”, “Colour in Your Garden – It Isn’t Just for Flowers” as well as Seasonal Flower Arranging demonstrations.
Seniors’ Tea – March 5
The Garden Festival is open to everyone today but gardening aficionados 65 and over are encouraged to come out on Thursday, March 5. This is an opportunity to enjoy the gardens, visit the Marketplace and take in the speakers when the show tends to be less crowded. With their $9 general admission, seniors will receive a complimentary gourmet cookie and cup of tea.
Sponsored by Action Health Care
Opening Garden Party – March 5
The Opening Garden Party is the ultimate sneak peek. From 6 - 8:30 pm guests can mingle with friends, wander through beautiful gardens and browse the Marketplace while enjoying a glass of red or white from Pelee Island Winery or a thirst-quencher from a craft brewery. A wonderful selection of canapés showcasing the Flavours of Perth prepared by local restaurants will tempt the palate and live music in the gardens will add to the fun. Auctioneer extraordinaire Stratford mayor Dan Mathieson and emcee Kevin Hulley will get the bids going on a host of things both fun and fabulous.
Tickets to the Opening Garden Party are $30/person
Sponsored by Parlee Law Offices and supported by Pelee Island Winery,The Parlour Inn, A Vintage Hotel and Home & Company Real Estate
Family Fun Night – March 6
Family Fun Night, from 5 - 8 pm, offers a rollicking good time for the whole family. While their parents take in the gardens and Marketplace, the “little sprouts” can create a garden craft, enjoy story-telling and face painting, munch on free refreshments and take part in a scavenger hunt. As always, kids are admitted free.
Sponsored by Marklevitz Architects and supported by Shoppers Drug Mart
The Canadian Grub Café
Visitors to the Stratford Garden Festival will be able to enjoy a variety of delicious light lunch items from Canadian Grub Café. Chef Robert Rose was featured last year on Food Network’s Chopped Canada.
Admission to the Stratford Garden Festival is $9. at the door. Children twelve and under are free. Tickets to the Opening Garden Party can be ordered by calling The Lung Association at 519-271-7500. More information on directions, group discounts, special events and speaker schedule is available at www.stratfordgardenfestival.com or by calling The Lung Association.
At A Glance
Event: The Stratford Garden Festival
Date: March 5 – 8, 2015
Hours: Thursday, March 5 12 noon - 5 pm
Friday, March 6 10 am - 8 pm
Saturday, March 7 10 am – 5:30 pm
Sunday, March 8 10 am - 5pm
Where: Stratford Rotary Complex, 353 McCarthy Road, Stratford - directions on website www.stratfordgardenfestival.com
Admission: $9. at the door. Children 12 and under free
Group Rate: Pre-arranged groups of 12 or more are $7/person
Theme: “Blooming Beautiful”
Presented by: A fundraiser to support the work of The Lung Association
Event Sponsor: Orr Insurance and Investment
Contact: Deedee Herman, Area Manager