Colorful butterflies flutter around the Pacific Island Water Garden at Franklin Park Conservatory.
Franklin Park I recently visited Franklin Park Conservatory to use my Groupon from Ohio Tourism Week. If you purchased this deal as well, be sure to use it as it expires soon. Franklin Park currently has several exhibits on display: Hungry Planet, Blooms & Butterflies and Savage Gardens. I'd seen some of the carnivorous plants before such as the Venus Flytrap and pitcher plants, so I really wanted to see the butterflies in the Pacific Island Water Garden area. You can see the butterflies coming out of their cocoons and awaiting to be placed in a container to be released into the garden. It's interesting to see the different types of cocoons they come out of. Butterflies are released daily at 1 p.m. in the center of the garden followed by a short talk on them. At 3 p.m. Monarchs are released. The conservatory is fairly large and if you plan to eat there, the cafe has reopened. I spotted a number of people eating lunch fare and it looked like it was both healthy and tasty. I read about a German family and its food use and grocery shopping as part of the Hungry Planet exhibit. It's interesting to see how much they spend on food and what they buy. I also stopped to watch the glassblowing at the Hot Shop, which you'll want to do. I've seen glassblowing before, but you always learn something new and see different styles of work. Be sure to check out the glass pumpkins and fruit on your way to the Hot Shop. I suggest allowing 2-3 hours for your visit. There are many Chihuly pieces (both glass and paintings) throughout the conservatory, so be sure to look for them. I especially liked the ones in the Himalayan area. Parking is free and there are tables if you want to pack a meal to eat a picnic outdoors. Franklin Park Conservatory is located at 1777 E. Broad Street. Admission is $11 for adults, $9 for students/seniors and $6 for children 3-17. Ages 2 and under admitted free of charge. Discounts are available for groups. For details and to plan your visit, check out www.fpconservatory.org/. TIP: On Thursdays they have Cocktails at the Conservatory on the rooftop. It's from 5:30 to 11 p.m. and costs $11, which gets you admission and food and drink tickets. It's for the 21 and older set only. WAGfest Take your furry friend to Prairie Oaks Metro Park's Darby Bend Lakes Area this Saturday for a fun-filled time at the park. It's free and open to the public. I went a couple of years ago and it was lots of fun. I saw some breeds of dogs I'd only seen on TV. The dogs had fun socializing and my parent's dog enjoyed swimming with the big dogs at the beach. They will have lots of contests, wilderness walk, samples, FREE engraved ID tags, exhibitors and more. For more information, visit www.wagfest.com.