Kanapaha Gardens hosting event just for kids


Published: Saturday, July 27, 2013 at 10:16 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, July 27, 2013 at 10:16 p.m.

There is a new event on Aug. 3 at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens that was made just for Gainesville kids.

Alexis Caffrey, director of the gardens in southwest Gainesville, said she created Kids' Day at Kanapaha because she thinks there's not enough for Gainesville kids to do in the summertime.

The gardens will be hosting the event, which focuses on fun for kids 13 and under, from 2-6p.m. There will be inflatable bounce houses and water slides, train rides, face painting, snow cones and drawing stations on the Balanoff Lawn, which is an expansive area just inside Kanapaha's entrance.

Admission is free for children under 3 and adults with a garden membership. It is $8 for children ages 3-13, $6 for children ages 3-13 who have a garden membership and $7 for adults who are non-members.

Visitors are welcome to bring a picnic with them, and Domino's Pizza will be selling pizza on site. The pizza is the only thing not included with admission, Caffrey said.

Caffrey said the first 100 children to arrive will each receive a free plant called a Bashful Briar. These are fun for kids because they close when you touch them. Kanapaha has a whole field of them that children enjoy when they visit.

"It's a wonderful plant to get kids interested," she said. "A plant that actually moves is very unusual."

This is the first time Kanapaha has held Kids' Day, but Caffrey said she'd like to make it an annual event.

Gainesville musician Lisa Johnson said she is glad Kanapaha planned a day for kids. She is bringing her grandchildren, who will be visiting from Tokyo.

Maya, 10, and Ewan, 8, will be with Johnson for a month. She has been looking for things to do with them, she said.

Caffrey said visitors should bring bathing suits and towels for the water activities.

Among the three bounce houses at the event, one will be reserved for the younger children. All the bounce houses and water slides will be supervised by garden staff, Caffrey said.

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