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Events

Past Events

The Bear Necessities–Learn the Basics about Bears

Our FABULOUS summer Intern turned Project AWAKE board member, Franny Atmore, gave an excellent presentation about Black Bears in America.

Franny is passionate about bears. She interned as a Bear Educator at the North American Bear Center in Ely, MN (bear.org).

After graduating she hopes to continue her education by pursuing a Fullbright Research Grant to study the impacts of tourism on bear activity.

The 3 part program covered information on black bear physiology & behavior, diet & communication, and human bear interactions both in captivity and in the wild, followed with a lively Q&A session.

THANK YOU to all who attended!

It was informative, engaging, and fun! If you were unable to attend there are talks of a follow-up program in late winter—stay tuned!!!

FALL FESTIVAL & SCARECROW WALK–October 14th, 10:00 AM-2:00 PM

We had a FABULOUS FALL FESTIVAL!! Thank you to all who participated! The week leading up our Saturday event was a fervor of activity. Construction on the new Welcome Center Business Entrance was in full swing, our Board of Directors held their Annual meeting on Wednesday, we hosted a Chamber of Commerce networking event on Thursday, AND the weather. The weather did not cooperate. We had to hold all your amazing scarecrow creations indoors until the threat of rain passed. The Krumm Center was jam packed!

After such a busy week, we were so excited for the FAB FALL FESTIVAL to finally arrive. Early on Saturday morning our AMAZING group of regular volunteers and dedicated board members rushed to get those scarecrows on display. It was quite the scene–we had to empty the Krumm Center of scarecrows so the vendors could set up their kiosks. It was down to the minute! We got the scarecrows out, got the vendors in, and I am so proud of our community SHOWING UP AND SUPPORTING THE ARBORETUM. Attendance was tremendous! Thank you for INVESTING your time and attending our event. It was a great experience!

A very special THANK YOU to Centre for Arts & Artists for holding a Scarecrow Open House for anyone to build scarecrows.
Arboretum volunteers collected these creations and put them on display for the community to enjoy.
THANK YOU!!

At the FALL FESTIVAL: VENDORS & RAFFLE

At the FALL FESTIVAL: AUTUMN-INSPIRED CHALK-ART CONTEST


JASPER COUNTY FAIR PARADE: IT’S A JUNGLE OUT HERE! JULY 17 @ 6:00 PM

2023 — the year of PARADES!

The Newton Arboretum & the Project AWAKE Board of Directors participated in another parade. We were delighted to showcase the Jasper County Fair’s jungle theme by decorating our trusty gator. We loaded it up with ‘Bertha’ the enormous elephant ear too!

Board members and volunteers proudly wore their green to represent the Arboretum. What a fantastic turnout! As we coasted through the streets of Colfax, the team handed out seed packets and helped raise awareness about all the gardens have to offer.

It was a great experience and a great way to celebrate Jasper County!


2023 SUMMER PROGRAMS: BUDDING BIRDERS, INSECT DETECTIVE, & ARBORETUM ARTS

2023 SUMMER PROGRAMS

Intern Franny, has been busy creating fun, educational programs for the community! Focused on environmental awareness each program is designed to help us observe and connect to nature.


BUDDING BIRDERS will learn to identify birds by their songs! Then our fledgling birders will take their knowledge on a scavenger hunt for birds in the Arboretum. Open to all ages, this program is a fantastic family activity!

Monday, July 10–offering 2 sessions:
• 9:00 AM
• 6:00 PM


INSECT DETECTIVES will scout the Arboretum for all the crawlies! Young entomologists learn how to identify insects, how to safely interact with them, and the importance of insects to the ecosystem. For ages 9-11, join us on:

Wednesday, July 19 from 9:00 – 11:00 AM


ARBORETUM ARTS will feature the beauty of leaves! Delving into botany, aspiring artists learn to identify tree species by creating their own leaf rubbing guide! Our young artists begin to observe the patterns & shapes of nature. For ages 6-8 (families are welcome), join us on:

Wednesday, August 2 from 9:00 – 11:00 AM

INTERN FRANNY DID A FANTASTIC JOB!!!

The Arboretum and Franny provided FREE educational programming created to stimulate interest in the environment, ecology, and horticulture. The classes were tailored for a younger audience, but adults were more than welcome to attend–and did!

We learned how to identify birds visually and through their song, we became familiar with insects and their habitats, and we ventured into botany by completing leaf rubbings to identify trees.

Franny laid the groundwork for us to make summer educational programs a yearly staple.

Thank you for attending the classes. We love your support!

Franny is entering her final year at Grinnell College, but graciously accepted an offer to join our Board of Directors until graduation.

What a great example of community service!


2023 ONE FISH, TWO FISH, RED FISH, WHO FISH?

NAME THE FISH CONTEST!
July 14 / July 21 / July 28 / August 4

We have four large fish that can’t find their identity! Please help name them so they can stop ‘floundering’ around. Keep your suggestions clean and creative, and include what inspired your name suggestion in your submission.

To participate please comment on the Facebook post or send an email to arboretumOM@gmail.com.

The weekly contest runs from Fridays through Thursdays at 8:00 PM.
• July 14 – July 20
• July 21 – July 27
• July 28 – August 3
• August 4 – August 10

OUR FISH HAVE NAMES!!!

The votes are in! The four big fish in the pond have been identified:

ANN CHOVY – shades of orange & white like an orange creamsicle

RORSHACK – or Rory for short, a mostly white fish with an ink blot test splotched on the head

TANCHO – another mostly white koi with just a dot of orange in the center of the head

COCO (Chanel) – a black & orange koi with flowing fins like a dress from the Chanel collection

Thank you to all who submitted names.
The fish are much happier now!


4th of JULY–CITY of NEWTON PARADE

WE HAD A BLAST!!
Special THANKS to our intrepid volunteers!

It took 2 board members, 1 horticulturist, 1 intern, and 3 volunteers to get the gator all dressed up for our 1st ever 4th of July parade.

We’d like to thank The Flower Court Garden Center for helping us fill the gator with blooms.

Let’s do it again next year!

RUN FOR BEER–IOWA BREWERY RUNNING SERIES & GEZELLIG BREWERY
SATURDAY JUNE 10, 10 AM

2023 RUN FOR BEER

JOIN US! at Gezellig Brewery on JUNE 10th at 10 AM for the 2023 RUN FOR BEER! The Iowa Brewery Running Series & Gezellig Brewery support healthy activity, fun, and building community relationships by giving back. So do we!

Project AWAKE was selected again this year to receive a percentage of the proceeds to support the Newton Arboretum & Botanical Gardens.

THANK YOU!! We are ever so grateful!

We will be on-site to participate, educate, and, of course, socialize!

SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL ARBORETUM!
Let’s RUN FOR BEER!


What a great morning to Run 4 Beer!! Overcast & breezy with just enough humidity to make that finish-line beer extra delicious. Thank you to all who participated! We love community support!

Stay tuned for further details on our super-secret, awesome, arboretum-expanding endeavors!


The GREAT IOWA ROAD TRIP–JUNE 2 & 3, 2023

The Great Iowa Road Trip

A program to support & revive local small businesses & attractions.

On June 2 & 3 residents of Jasper, Mahaska, & Marion counties are challenged to explore a Road Trip route that promotes community. Visit unexplored attractions, shop boutiques, and sample amazing foods from local businesses.

The Newton Arboretum & Botanical Gardens is featured as an unique attraction for all of central Iowa. Explore our 6-acre, nonprofit botanical garden showcasing hometown values and community involvement.
Visit us to learn about the beauty growing in your community!

THANK YOU to all who explored the Arboretum!
We hope you learned more about all we have to offer!!


SENIOR HEALTH & FITNESS DAY–MAY 31, 2023

The Newton YMCA’s SENIOR HEALTH & FITNESS FAIR!

Visit the Newton Arboretum & Botanical Gardens’ table at the Newton YMCA’s Health Fair! The Arboretum is the perfect place to stay active and enjoy the beauty of the outdoors. Learn about all the arboretum has to offer!

Breathe in the fresh air and stay healthy–physically & mentally!

THANK YOU to all who visited our table. We look forward to seeing you at the Arboretum!


IOWA ARTISTS STATE SHOW–Saturday, May 6, 2023

Visit the Krumm Center for Artistic Immersion!

12:00 PM to 3:00 PM

Regional Iowa Artist blue ribbon winners will exhibit their work in the Krumm Center for the Iowa Artist State Show. Judge, Rick Stewart, will be present to critique and award top honors.

This event is OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. Join Us! And show your art appreciation for our local, Iowa creatives.

We hope you enjoy the Show!!


Viva Las Veggies!! ANNUAL SPRING PLANT SALE–Friday, May 5, 2023

It’s a Cinco De Mayo Celebration!!
Let’s Get Colorful!

12:00 PM to 7:00 PM

THANK YOU to everyone who supported us! The Annual Spring Plant Sale is our biggest fundraising event. It takes lots of work & planning–and we are so grateful for your generosity!!

Local business support is essential to our success. Kiki’s Taco Truck was on site to feed all the shoppers. Special thanks for in-kind donations from:

  • Capitol II Theatre
  • Cardinal Corner
  • Earl May
  • Esther & Co.
  • Fareway
  • HyVee
  • Marilyn’s Hallmark
  • Mattingly’s Music
  • Nostalgia Wine & Spirits
  • The Flower Court Garden Center
  • Theisen’s
  • Walmart
  • West Side Java
  • Z Marie’s.

PLEASE REMEMBER–the Arboretum is a nonprofit. We receive NO funding from the City of Newton. All revenue generated from events is invested back into the gardens for the benefit of our community.

LET’S GROW TOGETHER!!


EARTH DAY FAIR –Saturday, April 22, 2023

The Newton Arboretum & Botanical Gardens and the City of Newton

10:00 AM to 3:00 PM

. . . are having an Earth Day Fair Spectacular!!
Join us and learn how to “Invest In Our Planet.”

The weather was not our friend this year. It was frigid!! THANK YOU!! to all who braved the elements to learn about earth care. (The weather may be a hint–Take care of Our Planet).

Thank you to Kiki’s Taco Truck and The Sea Turtle Ice Cream Company.

A special thanks to the City of Newton for their collaboration as well as to all the amazing vendors who lent their time to the fair.

LET’S CELEBRATE ALL THINGS GREEN!!

Congratulations to Hannah Libke who came out and designed this Earth Day Owl for our Chalk Art Contest!

Sadly, the rain came and washed away her lovely artwork before the actual Earth Day Fair.

Hannah received 4 tickets to the Blank Park Zoo for her talents.


The GREAT POND CLEANOUT 2023–Saturday, April 15

just add water of Ankeny will have a full crew on-site to deep clean our pond for the season.

Volunteers and aquatic enthusiasts are invited to attend. Enjoy a day of community and nature while learning about landscape pond maintenance. If you’ve never seen the pond cleaned, the process is an experience!

If you would like to assist, please dress for the weather. Gloves and rubber/waterproof boots are encouraged.