HAMILTON – Grounds For Sculpture, a 42-acre sculpture park and arboretum located in Hamilton, will present Winter Wonders, a three-month celebration of winter featuring for the whole family.
Winter Wonders kicks off on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 26 and 27 with the biggest and brightest Lights On Extravaganza Grounds For Sculpture has ever hosted. Park hours are extended to 9 p.m. because at sundown the switch is flipped and the entire park comes ablaze with approximately 70,000 twinkling lights. But before the lights come on, there are plenty of activities and events for the family.
On Saturday, decorate a cookie, or, if you’re feeling more creative, an entire graham cracker house. And from 3-5 p.m., listen to live music from the Nassau Brass and the Madrigal Singers. Special horse-drawn wagon rides will be offered from 5-8 p.m. On Sunday, enjoy a special holiday brunch or tea party at The Peacock Café, and take in a holiday musical performance by artists from the Hunterdon Academy of the Arts.
December is dedicated to “Holiday Happenings” and features concerts, workshops, performances, and dining opportunities sure to get you in the spirit. Park hours are extended on Fridays and Saturdays to 9 p.m. for visitors to see the grounds in their dazzlingly lit glory. Enjoy horse-drawn carriage rides on the Saturdays Dec. 3, 10, 17. Holiday programs include concerts by the famed Westminster Bell Choir in its only area appearance (Dec. 2), Opera New Jersey (Dec. 9), and Alex and the Kaleidoscope Band (Dec 10) and performance of “A Season of Miracles” by Pushcart Players (Dec 17) especially for the kids.
In January, Grounds For Sculpture is the place to find “Warmth in Winter” as it celebrates Chinese New Year in a big way and invites you to curl up to with a good book. Festivities include a Chinese paper-cutting workshop (Jan. 14), a Year of the Dragon performance by the Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company (Jan. 15), a Chinese calligraphy demonstration (Jan. 14) and a concert by the Yang Yi Gizheng Academy (Jan. 29). Workshops this month focus on book making, watercolors and photography.
In February at GFS, “Spring Comes Early,” with the month full of fascinating horticultural workshops, demonstrations, and lectures including two by radio personality and organic gardening guru Mike McGrath, host of “You Bet Your Garden” (Feb. 5) plus a Honeybee Weekend (Feb. 17-19) and a Hydroponic Gardening Weekend (Feb 24-26). The month begins with the annual Groundhog Day festivities for children (Feb. 2) and a Year of the Dragon dinner at Rat’s Restaurant (Feb 3) in which guest chef Scott Swiderski of Starr Restaurants’ Buddakan teams up with Rat’s Executive Chef Shane Cash to prepare an Asian-inspired dining treat.
Visitors can celebrate Valentine’s Day with a Box of Chocolates Workshop (Feb. 12) and a Valentine’s Day Brunch (Feb. 12) and Dinner (Feb. 14) at Rat’s Restaurant. And to close out Winter Wonders GFS is proud to present for the first time on its annual national tour the renowned Black Maria Film Festival (Feb. 25).
Grounds For Sculpture is open for touring both the grounds and several indoor exhibitions every Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. The main paths are plowed when it snows, turning the park into a wonderland suitable for strolling, snow-shoeing, and even cross-country skiing. Grounds For Sculpture will be open until 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
For more information and a full schedule of events, visit groundsforsculpture.org.
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