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New Year’s Resolutions & Community Support in 2021

By Bonnet House Blog No Comments

As 2020 comes to a close, it is a good time to reflect on the year that is behind us. It is important to consider all the good moments, as well as the bad ones, and begin to determine how we want to carry what we’ve learned into the new year. This year, our team at Bonnet House was
reminded once again of the importance of community and the vital role it plays in the future of our beloved estate.

2020 threw a variety of unprecedented challenges our way, but we were fortunate enough to have a wonderful community of supporters who helped us as we navigated this challenging year. It is hard to put into words just how much we appreciate each and every one of our guests,
volunteers, donors, and supporters. We are immensely grateful for the ability to continue our mission, and showcase this beautiful estate to locals and tourists alike.

But not every organization has been as fortunate as we have been this year. Many local community organizations, museums, and artists are struggling to make ends meet, and are at risk of shutting down. These organizations and artists are the lifeblood of the South Florida
community, and work tirelessly to improve our community.

This New Year, we encourage you to put forth your best efforts to support your local communities. Whether you live in a midwestern small town or a bustling metropolis in South Florida, do what you can to shop locally, and support community-based organizations and artists. By doing this, more money can stay within the community and help other small businesses and families directly in your area.

If you are interested in supporting Bonnet House in the new year, you can consider making a contribution to our Re-Vitalize Bonnet House campaign. This is a fundraiser to help us achieve our five-year comprehensive, strategic plan that includes advanced marketing efforts to attract tourists and broaden engagement with the local community. You can learn more about our campaign, and make a donation, here.

Connect With Nature At Bonnet House

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If you’ve ever visited Bonnet House, you know that our estate consists of much more than just a single, large home. In fact, the Bonnet House estate contains vast gardens and a multitude of fascinating wildlife for guests to enjoy. Interestingly enough, the grounds of Bonnet House exists on one of the few remaining examples of a natural barrier island ecosystem in South Florida. In order to preserve and showcase this unique ecosystem, we include many opportunities for guests to connect with nature, and experience the tranquility that comes with appreciating the outdoors.

This coming January, Bonnet House is excited to announce that Don Oprea will be hosting a ‘Forest Bathing’ class in the Bonnet House Hammock. This relaxing class will give guests the opportunity to slow down and tune out the stress of everyday life by connecting with nature. This course will take place on January 10th, 2021 from 10:00am – 12:00pm. The class is $20 for Bonnet House Members and $25 for non-members. To register, click here, or call 954-703-2606.

Bonnet House also offers a variety of artistic workshops that teach you how to create your own stunning landscape scenes inspired by the Bonnet House gardens. Starting in January, Bonnet House will be hosting our popular Watercolor and Acrylic workshops. Each workshop includes six weekly sessions that will cover the basic principles of whichever technique you choose. Each workshop will also include time to paint outside in our covered courtyards and gardens. To learn more, and register for a workshop, visit our events calendar .

If you are someone who finds your peace at work in the garden, our annual orchid care classes may be the right fit for you. Starting in January, Bonnet House will host classes that will teach you the basics of orchid care, repotting and pest control. You can purchase tickets and learn
more about these classes by visiting our events calendar .

It is important to note that you don’t have to attend a special class, or specific workshop to enjoy the gardens and wildlife here at Bonnet House. Guests are more than welcome to take a guided or self-guided tour of the estate and grounds as they visit. Taking a walk in our gardens is an activity that can either be fun for the whole family or enjoyed peacefully by yourself.

There is so much to learn and discover here at Bonnet House, whether it’s inside our main house, or outside in our gardens. We hope that you and your family take the time to explore and find peace in nature. Learn more, and plan your visit to Bonnet House, here.

Holiday Evening Tours In December At Bonnet House

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The Holidays are always such a special time here at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens. It’s hard to believe that this festive time of year is just  around the corner once again. Although we will not be able to celebrate in the same way as we have in years past, the dedicated team at Bonnet House will do their best to ensure that guests can safely experience the magic of the Holiday season here at this beautiful estate.

In order to share some much-needed cheer with the community this Holiday season, our fantastic volunteer team of designers will be decorating festive trees, wreaths, and centerpieces that will be on display throughout the estate. Guests can also enjoy a self-guided tour experience that includes the beautifully adorned trees, wreaths and centerpieces featured within the exhibit rooms. These stunning decorations will be on sale and available for purchase, with 100% of the proceeds benefiting Bonnet House Museum & Gardens.

The Holiday Evening Tours will take place Wednesday, December 16th, Thursday, December 17th, and Friday, December 18th from 6:00pm to 8:00 pm. The admission rate is $25 for adults, $10 for children between the ages 11-17, and free for kids 10 and under. It is important to note
that tickets must be purchased in advance, and only 50 tickets will be sold for each of these evening tours to promote physical distancing.

Guests (except children 2 years old and younger) must also wear masks/face coverings. “The Holiday programs we began offering in 2017 have rapidly become a community favorite,” said Bonnet House CEO Patrick Shavloske. “It’s a testament to our staff and volunteers that even a pandemic doesn’t damper their holiday spirit, creativity and love of Bonnet House.”

We hope that you and your loved ones can celebrate the joy of the Holiday season with us at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens this year. To learn more about our Holiday Evening Tours and to purchase tickets, click here .

Orchid Display House

Fall Classes & Guided Tours at Bonnet House

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Here in beautiful South Florida, it’s hard to believe that fall is right around the corner. But with the changing seasons comes a variety of exciting new classes and tours at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens. This fall, our team is particularly happy to announce that not only will we be resuming guided tours of the estate, but we will also once again be hosting our popular orchid care classes!

If you’ve visited Bonnet House before, you are likely familiar with Evelyn Bartlett’s passion for tending to flowers, especially orchids. To preserve this legacy, Bonnet House hosts popular orchid care classes throughout the year, and even hosts an annual two-day orchid festival! This fall, we will be hosting two orchid care classes on Saturday, October 10th. The first class will take place from 10:00am to 12:00pm, and the second class will take place from 1:00pm to 3:00pm. Each class will cover orchid care basics and will even include a greenhouse tour. To reserve your spot in one of our classes, click here.

Our team is also thrilled to announce that Bonnet House will resume guided tours of the estate starting on Thursday, October 1st. We will be conducting tours on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 9:30am – 11:00am. To ensure the safety of our guests, we will be limiting tour groups to no more than nine individuals. Of course our estate will still be open for self guided tours Tuesday through Friday from 11:00am to 3:00pm, as well as Saturday and Sunday from 11:00am to 4:00pm. You can click here to reserve your ticket today.

Autumn is such a beautiful time here in South Florida. Fall events in Fort Lauderdale are loved by community members and tourists alike. We hope you consider coming to Bonnet House Museum & Gardens with your loved ones this season. From our beloved orchid care classes, to  our popular and educational Bonnet House guided tours, we have something interesting to offer the whole family!

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September Discounts & Deals At Bonnet House

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September is such an exciting month here at Bonnet House Museum and Gardens. Now, through the end of the month, Bonnet House will be offering a discounted rate for families, and for those who mention Broward Attractions & Museums Month (BAMM) upon entry. With so
many discounts available to our guests throughout the month, you won’t want to miss this opportunity to visit the estate!

There are so many opportunities for family fun here in Fort Lauderdale. From our pristine beaches, to our vibrant culture, families that live in and visit Fort Lauderdale can always expect to experience a diverse array of family friendly activities. This is why we make sure to offer a
variety of programs, tours and events that are fun for the whole family. This September, we want to show families just how much we value their patronage by offering our Family Special , which includes a $20 admission rate for adults, and free admission for children 17 and under (must be accompanied by an adult).

If you’re interested in Fort Lauderdale discounts and deals, September is the perfect time to visit. Not only is Bonnet House offering discounted rates for families, but September is also Broward Attractions & Museums Month in Fort Lauderdale. With the purchase of one admission, museums like Bonnet House and other local attractions are  offering a second admission of equal or lesser value for free. Visitors just need to mention “BAMM” or inquire about the offer to purchase one regular price admission and get a second admission for free.

Here at Bonnet House, we are passionate about providing our guests with a meaningful cultural experience that connects the South Florida community with the legacy of the Bartlett Family. In that spirit, we always work hard to ensure that all our guests have a memorable experience here at our unique estate. With so many discounted things to do in Fort Lauderdale in September, we hope you’ll add Bonnet House Museum & Gardens to the top of your list!

Broward Attractions and Museums Month (BAMM) September 2020

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DISCOVER CULTURAL TREASURES IN YOUR BACKYARD!

Adventures await you, right outside your door! Discover new artists or ancient artifacts, ride on a riverboat or an airboat, explore a botanical garden or a historic house, go roller skating or feed a flamingo… and so much more.

Participating attractions and museums include:

Art and Culture Center/ Hollywood (BOGO admission)

Bonnet House Museums & Gardens (BOGO admission)

Butterfly World (BOGO admission)

Flamingo Gardens (BOGO admission)

History Fort Lauderdale (BOGO admission)

International Swimming Hall of Fame Museum (BOGO admission)

Jungle Queen Riverboats (BOGO *Noon and 2:30pm 90-minute cruises only)

NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale (BOGO admission)

Old Davie School Historical Museum (BOGO admission)

Sawgrass Recreation Park (BOGO admission)

Stonewall National Museum & Archives, (Free admission)

Wiener Museum of Decorative Arts (BOGO admission)

World AIDS Museum (Free admission)

Xtreme Action Park (BOGO *XD Dark Ride Theater only)

Visitors just need to mention “BAMM” or inquire about the offer to purchase one regular price admission and get a second admission of equal or lesser value for free. Participating organizations may have additional restrictions or blackout dates that apply, as well as additional discounted offers available. Visitors should check each attraction’s website or call for details and hours of operation before visiting.

Broward Attractions and Museums Month is September 1-30, 2020. Visit the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BAMMsfl for additional information.

Things To Do In Fort Lauderdale – What’s Open

By Bonnet House Blog No Comments

While this summer has been quite different from years past, you and your family can still get out and enjoy yourselves in a safe environment. Right here in Fort Lauderdale, we have a variety of museums, historical homes, parks and beaches that are open to the public and offer safe environments for social distancing. We have listed a few of our favorite spots in Fort Lauderdale that you and your family are sure to enjoy!

The Historic Stranahan House & Museum is a perfect weekend activity for families! The historic home is open Friday through Sunday and offers guided tours at 1pm, 2pm, and 3pm. Located on the New River, the home was built in 1901 by the predominant businessman, Frank Stranahan. Throughout the history of the estate, the home was used for multiple public projects, as Mr. Stranahan and his wife, Ivy, took on leadership roles in the community. This estate has been open to the public for viewing as a historic house museum since 1981 and welcomes more than 10,000 visitors annually.

Birch State Park is another great place to take the family in Fort Lauderdale. Birch State Park is a vibrant center for the community of Fort Lauderdale, and residents often enjoy activities including bicycling, roller skating, snorkeling, paddle boarding and so much more. Visitors can access the beach via the pedestrian tunnel under A1A, and there are also picnic areas that overlook the channel. The park is open daily from 8am to 6pm, and they charge a $6 entry fee per vehicle.

If you are in Fort Lauderdale, you should be sure to set some time aside to visit some of our beautiful beaches. With our clear, turquoise water and white sand beaches, Fort Lauderdale’s beaches are popular destinations for visitors and residents alike. Whether you enjoy surfing the waves, searching for seashells, or relaxing with a good book, Fort Lauderdale beaches offer something fun for the whole family.

Of course Bonnet House Museum & Gardens is also open to the public for self-guided tours of both our main house and expansive gardens on Tuesdays through Sundays. In fact, now through November 25th, we are offering our Family Special, which includes free admission for guests 17 and under!

Make lasting memories with your loved ones by experiencing the best that Fort Lauderdale has to offer. If you would like to learn more about Bonnet House’s Family Special, click here.

Romantic Proposal Venue In Fort Lauderdale

By Bonnet House Blog No Comments

Here at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, romance is always in the air, especially in our vast tropical garden. Bonnet House offers a unique location in downtown Fort Lauderdale for couples to spend time together and enjoy the romantic atmosphere on our secluded garden trails. With our spectacular views, and gorgeous plants in bloom all year round, Bonnet House is the perfect place to propose in Fort Lauderdale.

While Bonnet House has been known throughout South Florida as a gorgeous location to host an outdoor wedding , our estate is also an excellent place to make a promise to your future bride.

Marriage proposals are important, and your engagement should be a special time for both you and your new fianc é . Before getting engaged, there is so much to consider about how you will make that big moment as special as possible. In addition to the engagement ring you choose, you also need to plan the location, your wardrobe, any photography, the way in which you’ll pop the question, and more!

But don’t stress Bonnet House has you covered. In addition to the beautiful outdoor location, Bonnet House will do what we can to accommodate your proposal on site in any location you choose. Whether you want to propose in our Courtyard, our Veranda, or on our Chickee Bridge, an events coordinator will be available to help guide you and any potential guests through your proposal.

If you hear wedding bells in your future, and you just can’t wait for the day you’ll share your vows and say “I do,” consider making your engagement official at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens. Contact David Wooden at 954-703-2608 or [email protected] to book your proposal.

Orchid Display House

A Complete Guide to Orchid Care

By Bonnet House Blog One Comment

At Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, we understand the importance of caring for one’s orchids, sharing South Florida’s history, and the unique natural environment that we call home. Even in a warm, sunny environment like South Florida, orchids can be a challenge to grow and specific techniques vary based on a multitude of factors. We’ll take some time in this blog to highlight some of the basics of orchid care. The first step to basic orchid care is  understanding what type of orchid you want to grow. Each orchid is unique and requires a different balance of sunlight, water and food in order to grow.

The first step is to consider the amount of sunlight your plant will require. Essentially, orchids need just enough sun so that they have somewhat yellow-green foliage and strong, vertical growths. If your orchid is exposed to too much sunlight, the foliage will appear dark green, and will not have the typical strong upright growths.

The roots of your orchid, as well the entire plant will not survive without sufficient exposure to moving air. For this reason, most orchids do not actually grow in soil, with the exception of a few terrestrial varieties. When potting your orchid, your pot should be open with good drainage, but it should still be capable of holding enough moisture to support the plant’s needs. Typically, orchids are intolerant of an environment with little to no airflow. When considering where to keep your orchid, you should ensure that your plant is exposed to gentle air movement at all times. If you are growing your orchid in an indoor environment, you can simply use an overhead fan on a low setting, or a portable oscillating fan that is directed away from the plant.

Watering is the most common issue faced by orchid owners. In order to properly water any plant, you must consider both quantity and frequency. Due to the specific nature of your growing environment and the type of orchid itself, there isn’t an exact answer to how much and how often you should water your orchid. However, the main rule of thumb is to give the plant some water just as it dries out. The most effective way to determine whether or not your orchid has begun to dry out is to insert your finger into the soil and determine the moisture content yourself. This will not cause harm to the plant, and will let you know whether or not it is time to give your orchid some water. When your orchid is ready to be watered, it will require copious amounts. Continue watering your plant until you start to notice water running freely from the drainage holes in the pot. This will not only soak the potting medium, but it will flush away salts that naturally accumulate. At a minimum, be sure to water your orchid at least once a month.

If you care for your orchid properly, it will be able to grow and flower for long periods without the use of fertilizer. However, feeding orchids fertilizer regularly does yield better results. Typically, orchids should be fertilized once a week in the summer and every two weeks during the fall and winter times. Regardless of what brand or type of fertilizer you select for your orchid, most experienced growers recommend that you use no more than one half of the label-recommended strength after you water your plant.

Here, at Bonnet House, we have an orchid curator and orchid care volunteers who maintain the two greenhouses and display house.  The Orchid Display House is part of the house tour.  Visitors can visit the estate and enjoy a self guided tour of the house and grounds, view the beautiful orchids grown throughout the estate and on display in the Shell Museum Complex.  Click here to purchase your tickets.

Intimate Summer Weddings Close/ Intimate Ceremony Dates Available

By Bonnet House Blog 2 Comments

As the COVID19 epidemic has spread throughout the world, countless planned events have been cancelled or postponed indefinitely. Unfortunately for many happy couples, this has also included wedding ceremonies, receptions, honeymoons, and much more. With travel restrictions and social distancing recommendations, getting family and friends together for a wedding can feel nearly impossible. Here at Bonnet House, we understand the importance of celebrating love and family, especially such during such challenging times. This is why we have made it a priority to create opportunities for couples to get married now in a safe environment that includes  options for live streaming to your loved ones. To ensure the safety of those involved, up to five people will be permitted during the ceremony, including the couple, officiant, photographer, and videographer.

Here is a list of our package details:
● Package 1 – Use of Bonnet House only – $500
● Package 2 – Use of Bonnet House & Video – $1,300
● Package 3 – Use of Bonnet House with Photography – $1,300
● Package 4 – Use of Bonnet House with Video & Photography – $2,100

To make sure that everything runs according to plan on your wedding day, Bonnet House will provide you with a Personal Bridal Assistant, and allow you to use the Bonnet House Estate for a one hour ceremony between 9am and 6pm. You can also use the property for bridal photography one hour before the ceremony. Free parking is available onsite as well. Please click here to view our preapproved vendor list for a list of officiants.

An intimate summer wedding on the beautiful Bonnet House estate will be sure to provide you and your loved ones with lasting memories. An intimate wedding keeps the focus of the ceremony on the couple and the love that is shared. By choosing our wedding options, you can share your beautiful ceremony and commitment with those you love most, while still maintaining the intimacy and serenity of a small wedding.

To view our availability, please click here. If you are interested in hosting your wedding ceremony at Bonnet House this summer, contact David Woodin at 9547032608 or [email protected] to book your event.