Saturday, May 23, 2009

On Our Way to Olbrich Botanical Gardens

After brunch we made our way down State street to catch the #3 bus.

All was quiet in the center of town.

Here's a colorful little place next to where the bus stops.

Walking from the bus stop by the lake

We arrived at the gardens around 2:30. It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon. There was an afternoon concert that started at 2:00 so music as well as the fragrance of blooming spring flowers filled the air. Olbrich Botanical Gardens is home to 16 acres of display gardens and a 10,000 square foot tropical conservatory. Ten outdoor specialty gardens include a Thai Pavilion & Garden, A Prairie-style Rose Garden, and unique water features throughout the property. It is a lovely setting to tour.

A pavilion, or sala, is a common structure in Thailand generally used as a shelter from rain and heat. Olbrich's pavilion is more ornate than most roadside salas in Thailand and represents those found at a temple or on a palace grounds. However, Olbrich's pavilion is not a religious structure.The pavilion was a gift to the University of Wisconsin-Madison from the Thai Government and the Thai Chapter of the Wisconsin Alumni Association. UW-Madison has one of the largest Thai student populations of any U.S. college or university.Olbrich was chosen as the site for the pavilion because of its garden setting and its proximity to water. Water is important to Thailand because of its implications for good health and prosperity.

Thai Pavilion and Garden Facts
The pavilion is 40 feet long, 22 feet wide, and 30 feet high
The pavilion features gold leaf etchings, a lacquer finish, and intricate decoration
The estimated value of the Pavilion is $1.5 to 2 million
The pavilion is crafted without nails or screws
There are no endangered woods or materials used in the pavilion
The gift of the pavilion was approved by Thailand's royal family therefore, it bears the Royal seal of the Thai Crown
The pavilion is only one of four located outside of Thailand. The others are in Germany, Norway, and Hawaii
The Thai Garden is connected to the central gardens by a 155-foot arched, ornamental bridge that spans Starkweather Creek

The pavilion was designed and constructed in Thailand, then taken apart piece by piece and shipped to Madison. A group of Thai artisans arrived in September, 2001, to reconstruct it on its permanent site along Starkweather Creek.

This little lion is Aria's favorite statue

Thank you Aria for a lovely Mother's Day Celebration.
It was very special to spend this day with you.

"Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems." ~Rainer Maria Rilke
If you are ever in Madison, WI, be sure to visit these gardens. Outdoor Gardens are open daily and are free to all. Admission to the Bolz Conservatory is $1 per person and free to all on Wednesday and Saturday from 10 am to noon.


menehune said...

Such lovely photos, an interesting place that piques my curiosity, and such a wonderful daughter to have planned a lifetime memory for you and your sister. Mahalo for letting us be a part of it! Yup, daughters are great, aren't they (sons too)? Menehune

marta said...

Aria did a wonderful job of making the day very special for you. I've seen Chinese installations in gardens but this is the first Thai. And such an unexpected location. Thanks for sharing the weekend and lovely garden with us. Have a great weekend.

nancyhol said...

What a lovely Mother's Day!

And what a beautiful pavilion and garden. If I ever get back to Madison, I will be sure to visit it.

Thanks, Barb!

girasoli said...

Beautiful gardens. What a surprise to find a building from Thailand in Wisconsin! Sounds like you had a wonderful day!

Jerry said...

Gorgeous shots Barb - what a perfect way to spend 'your' special day!

Laurie said...

Oh, you had a lovely day. Thank you for sharing!

Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin