Monday, June 13, 2011

June 15 busy in Saginaw with "D.E.A.R. at the Zoo," Art & Garden Festival at Andersen

by Janet I. Martineau
Two big events take place on the same day in Saginaw -- on Wednesday, June 15.
The free Arts & Garden Festival runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Andersen Enrichment Center, 120 Ezra Rust.
And right down the road within walking distance is the 10th annual “D.E.A.R. at the Zoo -- Drop Everything and READ,” also running from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Children’s Zoo at Celebration Square, 1730 S. Washington. Admission is $7 for adults and children.
Art & Garden Festival in 2010
The Art & Garden Festival features five lecture demonstrations, art and garden vendors, a silent auction, lunch and its famed strawberry shortcake.
The lectures are: 
-- 10:15 a.m. Weather Gardening by Mark Torregrossa, Channel 25.
-- 11 a,m. Landscaping by Jerry Somalski of Bay Landscaping.
-- 11:45 a.m. History & Description of the Art of Bonsai by Al Fassezke.
-- 12:30 p.m. Home Gardening by Abele Greenhouse and Garden Center.
-- 1:15 p.m. Hosta’s Shady Friends by master gardener Grey Gitzen. 
Among the nearly 15 vendors are native Michigan perennials and ferns, Tomboy gardening tools, organic canned fruits and vegetables, garden art made from recycled pottery, Saginaw Bean Bunny T-shirts, handmade greeting cards, homemade cold process soap, floral paintings, wind chimes, baked apple goods, and cement birdbaths, stepping stones and bird feeders.
“D.E.A.R.” is sponsored by the READ Association of Saginaw County.
All children attending can select a new book to take home as well as participate in more than 14 literacy-themed activities. In honor of the 10th anniversary celebration, the first 1,000 children also will receive a reusable book tote bag. 
This year’s featured visiting author is Gary Bower, who penned “I'm a Michigan Kid! An Artistic Tour of the Great Lakes State.” It explores the state through his poetry and the paintbrush of Jan Bower. The book is for sale at the event and Bower will sign copies between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.  
“D.E.A.R” also features animal presentations and book readings throughout the zoo  and storytelling in the Zoo Amphitheater.

The Zoo Amphitheatre schedule includes:  
-- 10:30 a.m., attorney  Carol M. Thomas reading “Felecity Floo Visits the Zoo” by  E.S. Redmond.
-- 11:15 a.m.,  Dr. Richard Syrek of the Saginaw Intermediate School District reading “Penguins” by Liz Pichon.
-- Noon, visiting author Gary Bower reading his “I’m A Michigan Kid.” 
-- 1:15 p.m., Dr. Desmon Daniel of Motivating Factor reading “Perfect Square” by Michael Hall.
-- 2:15 p.m.,  Diane Fong of the Michigan CardioVascular Institute Foundation reading “Whoo! Whoo! Goes the Train” by Anne Rockwell.
Among the organizations and businesses featuring animal-themed activities with prizes throughout the zoo grounds are Barnes and Noble Booksellers, CAN Council Saginaw County, the Castle Museum of Saginaw County, the Children's Book Company,  Michigan CardioVascular Institute,  Mid-Michigan Children’s Museum, Mid Michigan Waste Authority, Public Libraries of Saginaw, ROR at Covenant HealthCare, READ Association of Saginaw County,  Saginaw County Birth to 5 Program, Saginaw Community Foundation Youth FORCE, St. Mary’s of Michigan and White Pine Reading Buddies.  
READ of Saginaw currently has more than  500 volunteers and provides services to more 1,100 children at 45 locations throughout the county.

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