Daily Archives: June 7, 2020

Meijer Gardens a must see place in Grand Rapids

For several years after the Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park opened in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1995 my parents adopted the plan during visits of picking me up at the airport and driving to Meijer Gardens for lunch then a stroll.

entry to Frederik Meijer Gardens in 2014

“In 1990, Fred and Lena Meijer were asked for their support, and they embraced the concept of a major cultural attraction centering around horticulture and sculpture. The original vision has turned into a top cultural destination in the Midwest region, known internationally for the quality of the art and gardens.” [from the Meijer Gardens web site]

Over the years, I have visited with family and friends several times, always delighted by old plant friends and new exhibits.

The main campus covers 158 acres. There is a large amphitheater, tropical conservatory, desert plant collection, a model farm, a children’s garden that was added in 2004, and throughout all the gardens, stunning sculpture is to be found.

Nina Akamus sculpture “American Horse” based on Leonardo DaVinci Horse [more about this sculpture at http://www.ninaakamu.com/story.html ]

Special events add to the visitor appeal for residents and travelers. We attended the Dale Chihuly exhibit that was extended from April 30 through October 31, 2010.

The Dale Chihuly exhibit throughout Meijer Gardens attracted so many people, it was extended to the end of October

 

The addition of an 8.5 acre Japanese garden on former swamp land was a particular delight to watch.

The wetlands before

view of the Japanese garden under construction in 2014

In 2009, plans began for a Japanese garden designed and constructed by Hoichi Kurisu and the firm Kurisu International. “His work ranks among the finest Japanese gardens outside of Japan, including Portland Japanese Garden (Oregon), Anderson Gardens (Rockford, IL), Morikami Museum and Japanese Garden (Delray Beach, Florida).”

Hoichi Kurisu looks at what still needs to be done in 2014

walking around the fence in fall 2014 to view construction

during construction

looking over the fence during construction 2014

enjoying a peaceful moment in 2016 a year after the Japanese garden opened

The main gate was opened to visitors June 13, 2015. The garden has proved to be a top attraction within Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park. More may be found here https://www.meijergardens.org/attractions/japanese-garden/

Meijer Gardens re-opens to the public Monday, June 8 2020. Advance reservations are necessary. https://www.meijergardens.org/plan/

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