Edward Bok's Legacy Continues

CONTACT: Erica Smith
Director of Marketing
(863) 734-1210
August 29, 2016
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The Legacy Continues as the Bok Family Celebrates the Opening of New Garden Spaces

LAKE WALES, Fla. – Proudly standing beside President Calvin Coolidge and overlooking a momentous crowd of thousands, Edward Bok unveiled his magnificent Singing Tower to the nation on February 1, 1929. The family tradition continues 87 years later as great-grandson Dr. Tomas Bok and his children Eric and Annika cut the ribbon on September 10 at 10:00 a.m. officially opening nearly eight acres of spectacular new garden spaces including the long-awaited Hammock Hollow Children’s Garden. Bok Tower Gardens will open at 8:00 a.m. and general admission will be free for this historic event.

The Bok family along with project designer and landscape architect Thomas Woltz of Nelson Byrd Woltz will be available for comment following the ribbon cutting celebration.

The new garden areas, designed by the landscape architecture firm of Nelson Byrd Woltz, in collaboration with Coyle & Canon and Mary Wolf Landscape Architect, provide nearly one mile of pathway connecting to the historic Olmsted gardens. Native plantings, picturesque vistas and distinctive ecosystems are spotlighted by the expansion and provide a vibrant experience ushering in a new generation of visitors.

The celebration begins at 10:00 a.m. with a special ribbon cutting dedication and remarks from Gardens’ president David Price, Board of Directors Chair Cindy Alexander, Board of Directors Vice Chair Dr. Tomas Bok, and Dr. Nick Place, Dean and Director of University of Florida/IFAS Extension. Reverend Tom Seitz, Sr. will provide a special garden blessing during the ceremony. The ceremony will conclude with a native pollinator release. Middle school students from the Bok Academy steel drum band will provide musical accompaniment during the dedication.

Schedule of Events for Grand Opening Celebration

• Nature guides and educators, animal encounters, live music, creative play activities, Sandy Music Girls in concert and more in the Hammock Hollow Children’s Garden from 10:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

• Guided tours of the Wild Garden at 11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 1:00 p.m. & 2:00 p.m.

• Interpretive guides in the Pollinator & Edible Garden from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

• UF/IFAS hands-on learning exhibits and plant giveaway in the Alexander Discovery Center from
11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

• Polk County Master Gardeners Information Booth in the Edible Garden from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

• Cooking demonstrations by Tyler Zager, recent winner of the Food Network’s Kids BBQ Championship, and UF/IFAS Chef David S. Bearl and Polk County Master Gardeners in the Outdoor Kitchen at 11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 1:30 p.m. & 2:30 p.m.

• Live carillon concerts featuring children’s music favorites at 1:00 p.m. & 3:00 p.m.