GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Frederick Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park’s annual butterfly exhibit is returning this spring to help the West Michigan community escape the winter blues.
The “Fred and Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming” exhibit brings patrons 7,500 tropical butterflies.
This year, Meijer Gardens celebrates its 28th year of offering an intimate way to see the amazing world of butterflies. This year’s event comes with a different theme: the fine detail and beauty of the species.
“We invite and encourage you to delve deeper into the details to experience the beauty of these unique creatures,” said Steve Laware, vice president of horticulture at Meijer Gardens, in a prepared statement.
Officials said the much-awaited exhibition held every March and April is the largest temporary tropical butterfly exhibition in the country.
Approximately 60 beautiful species of butterflies and moths from the butterfly-rich areas of Costa Rica, Ecuador, the Philippines and Kenya travel to fly freely in the 15,000-square-foot lush Meijer Tropical Conservatory.
At 85 degrees and 70% humidity, the environment in the conservatory mimics the tropics that butterflies call home. Officials said they can look forward to seeing about 1,000 chrysalises arrive at Meijer Gardens each week during the exhibit.
The observation deck will be open to patrons to watch these amazing creatures spread their wings for the first time, among other activities.
“We’ve added new exploration stations in the Grace Jarecki Seasonal Display Greenhouse, where guests can use a microscope to enjoy a unique look at the plant material that helps raise butterflies,” Lavare said.
While Meijer Gardens encourages patrons to ask questions and “fix a few sensibilities” during their visit, they must adhere to the following exhibit rules, including:
- Do not touch the butterflies.
- During the butterfly exhibition, tripods are not allowed in the concert. Monopods may be used while being polite to other guests.
- Per USDA regulations, no butterfly or plant material may be removed from the conservatory.
Admission costs are $20 for ages 14-64, $15 for seniors 65 and older and $15 for students with ID, and $10 for children ages 3-13. Children 2 and under are admitted free.
Extended hours and exhibit activities, as well as a full calendar of events, are available online at MeijerGardens.org/calender.
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