DESCRIPTION: Set on 970 acres of lush, rolling hills and windswept meadows, Powell Gardens—Kansas City's botanical garden—offers breathtaking displays of intricate gardens, interesting architecture, a nature trail and a year-round calendar of special events, exhibits and classes for the entire family.
ADDRESS: 1609 NW US Hwy. 50, Kingsville, MO 64061
LOCATION: 30 miles east of Kansas City
- The 18,000-square-foot Visitor Education Center houses a gift shop, rentable classroom space and a glass-topped conservatory.
- Build nature boats, search the pond for seasonal residents, play nature games and construct gnome and fairy homes among fallen trees and waterways on the new Family Discovery Loop. This one-mile hike meanders through wooded and aquatic ecosystems with five trail stops and 16 hands-on activities for groups, families and individuals.
- The Seed to Plate collection houses feature edible tropical and temperate plants as well as four living walls of succulents.
- Discover the Marlese Gourley Island Garden—this oasis includes more than 50 varieties of water plants in exquisite reflecting pools and water containers, a secret, sunken garden and a 600-foot “living” rock wall, one of the largest of its kind in North America.
- The David T. Beals III Woodland & Stream Garden features a secret trail leading to an enchanted forest where you’ll find unusual plants and mystical forest dwellings.
- Set on 12 acres, the Heartland Harvest Garden is America’s premier edible landscape—a delicious place meant to be enjoyed with all five senses. Seasonal display beds inspire home gardeners and chefs to discover new color, creativity and plants with each visit.
- Children of all ages are invited to explore plants and nature in the two-acre Children’s Garden. A family friendly space, this special corner dedicated to children allows young gardeners to plant their own garden, walk on garden tool balance beams, explore a nearby colorful maze featuring a variety of sound elements and play on a newly renovated playground.
- See four creations by world-renowned architect E. Fay Jones, including an inspirational nondenominational chapel.
GARDEN HOURS: April 1-Oct. 24: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Thu.-Sun., Nov. 11-Dec. 30: 4-10 p.m. Thu.-Sun. Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve, New Year's Day and January - March for daily admission.
GENERAL ADMISSION: Adults $10, children (5-12) $4 and seniors $9. Children 4 and under are always free. Festival admission applies for certain events.
ANNUAL ATTENDANCE: Approximately 100,000.
HISTORY: In 1948, George E. Powell, Sr., a prominent Kansas City businessman, acquired the beautiful tract of land that is now Powell Gardens. In 1969, he donated the 640-acre farm to the Kansas City Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, who used it as a regional camp until 1984. Partnering with the University of Missouri’s School of Agriculture, the Powell Family Foundation then began developing a horticultural and natural resource facility. As a part of this project, the Powell Center retained Pittsburgh-based Environmental Planning and Design, the leading U.S. consultants for botanical gardens. The firm recognized that the site would be ideal for development as a botanical garden. In 1988, official ties with the University of Missouri ended and Powell Gardens Inc., a not-for-profit organization, was established.
WHERE TO EAT: A variety of dining options are available in the Perennial Lounge, reFresh (updated locations can be found on the Powell Gardens website) and through seasonal Powell Picnics (reservations required). Adult beverages can also be found at several bar carts located throughout the Gardens.
ANNUAL SPECIAL EVENTS:
- Bloom Fest (mid April-early May)—Celebrate the joy, color, beauty and creativity of nature. Bloom Fest: Play Outside features spectacular botanical displays, inventive floral design and rotating weekend activities for the whole family.
- Festival of Butterflies (late July-early August)—Experience hundreds of free-flying butterflies in several indoor and outdoor displays. With a summer vacation feel, this festival follows our favorite native winged pollinators as visitors learn all about caterpillars, butterflies, moths and the plants that sustain them.
- Harvest Days (late September-late October)—This fall-favorite event highlights outdoor “living rooms” where visitors can enjoy the wonders of autumn and the bounty of the Heartland Harvest Garden. Cozy up to a fire pit with food, wine and conversation as we settle in for shorter days and cooler weather.
- Festival of Lights (early November-late December)—Enjoy a breath of fresh air during a hectic holiday season. Wander an outdoor walking path featuring immersive light installations that are grounded in nature and celebrate the natural joy of the holiday season.
DON’T FORGET: The gardens’ winding paths, wooded trails and large gardens, make comfortable walking shoes a necessity for those wanting to explore.
GROUP TOURS: Powell Gardens offers a variety of group tours to help navigate the Garden’s collection. Call for more information.
PARKING: Parking at Powell Gardens is free and $5 per car during festivals.
PUBLIC RELATIONS CONTACT: Sadie Pederson, Marketing & Communications Manager, 816-683-4826 or firstname.lastname@example.org