This year's event provides walk-through tours of nine private
gardens throughout the community, located within convenient driving
distance from one another. The event will be held rain or shine.
The walk is a fundraiser for the David Davis Mansion Foundation,
which provides private support for the David Davis Mansion State
From the whimsical to the classical, this year's gardens offer an
abundance of flowers, water features, garden art and unique plants.
The tour begins with a show-stopping garden on Sunset Road, along
with the first floor of the owner's home. Other stops include an
English-style garden, a suburban garden inspired by the owner's
rural heritage and an expansive garden featuring outdoor living
This year's theme, "Garden Sampler," is a reminder that there are
creative similarities between needlework and gardening. Like
samplers, gardens can be commemorative, therapeutic or decorative
works of art expressing the personality of the designer.
Some of the nurseries will have experts on hand to provide
information about the plants and design techniques used in the
Tickets are $15 in advance, $18 the weekend of the event and $7
for children ages 1-17. They may be purchased in advance at Garlic
Press, Green View Cos. and Schnucks Supermarkets in Normal; and at
Casey's Garden Shop, the Copy Shop, Grieder Sod and Landscaping,
Growing Grounds, Schnucks Supermarkets, Sunburst Nursery/Penn
Landscaping, Wendell Niepagen Greenhouses, and the David Davis
Mansion in Bloomington. Tickets may also be purchased online at
www.daviddavismansion.org or at the David Davis Mansion the
weekend of the event.
The garden walk begins on the grounds of the David Davis Mansion
State Historic Site at 1000 Monroe Drive in Bloomington. Easy ticket
and map pickup with drive-thru service and free parking on the
mansion grounds are available during the entire event weekend.
Garden walkers may also shop at the gardeners' marketplace on the
mansion lawn. Some of the vendors and artisans offering a variety of
plants and garden-related products for sale during the two-day event
at the David Davis Mansion are All Glass Flowers, Bellas Home &
Garden, Ecology Action Center, Fused Glass, ISU Horticulture Center,
Jim's Ornamental Garden Iron, and craft demonstrations by Joe
Ramholz and Mike McCarthy.
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Visitors may also enjoy complimentary tea and desserts served
under a tent on the mansion lawn. Tours of Sarah's Garden will be
conducted by members of the University of Illinois Extension Master
Gardeners in McLean County, and visitors can learn from these
experts how to make their own Victorian gardens using heirloom
plants from Thomas Jefferson's Monticello and other famous American
gardens. Guided tours of the Davis Mansion will also be offered.
WJBC-AM and FM will do a live remote broadcast from the lawn of the
Davis Mansion during the garden walk.
Corporate sponsors for the Glorious Garden Festival are Casey's
Garden Shop, Chizmar Landscaping, Green View Companies, Grieder Sod
& Landscaping, Growing Grounds, Original Smith Printing, Sunburst
Nursery/Penn Landscaping, Wendell Niepagen Greenhouses and Garden
Center, WJBC-AM 1230 and FM 93.7, and Zimmerman & Armstrong
During the past 16 years, more than 15,000 visitors have toured
more than 150 of Bloomington-Normal's most beautiful private gardens
during the Glorious Garden Festival, netting nearly $164,000 for the
nonprofit David Davis Mansion Foundation and David Davis Mansion
State Historic Site.
This year's event proceeds will enable the
David Davis Mansion to
continue the restoration of the historic Sarah's Garden, a long-term
project that involves ongoing research and the reintroduction of
difficult-to-find heirloom plants and seeds. Proceeds will also be
used to develop new school programs featuring the garden and to help
keep the mansion open to the public.
The David Davis Mansion State Historic Site, administered by the
Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, was built in 1872 for Supreme
Court Justice David Davis and his wife, Sarah. The site is open
Wednesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for free public
[Text from file received from
the Illinois Historic