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Mercer Botanic Gardens to host inaugural holiday event

December 4, 2018

Even as Mercer Botanic Gardens continues recovering from extensive flood damage due to Hurricane Harvey, it will be hosting its first Holiday in the Gardens event.

From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8, the gardens will feature music, a holiday market and children’s activities.

“We all felt it was time to invite our neighbors, the people we serve,” said Nancy Ackley, president of the Mercer Society.

The Mercer Society, a nonprofit arm of the gardens, has been working to help move the gardens to a higher location after it was damaged in the Tax Day flood and then again by Harvey. Baldwin Boettcher Library, which is located on the gardens’ grounds, was also damaged by about 20 feet of water and its reopening date has not been announced. In September, veterans arrived to help restore the gardens, which remain partially closed to the public as more repairs are underway.

The inaugural Holiday in the Gardens will be free and open to the public, although visitors can donate money to help in Mercer’s recovery during the event.

The event will feature bands from middle schools Twin Creeks and Bammel.

The Shakespeare Garden, which was opened during the spring, will also host a 20-minute play performed by an acting troupe and will feature classical music.

A story time will be hosted by the staff of the Little Blue Library and other children’s activities will also be available.

Santa Claus will also be arriving on a Spring Fire Department fire truck and families will be able to take their own photos.

“It will an opportunity for family members to take pictures using their own camera or phone rather than us charging them,” Ackley said.

Food trucks and plants will also be available for sale.

Visitors can also donate money to the gardens to help in Mercer’s recovery, she said.

Chris Ludwig, interim director of the gardens, said he hopes the holiday event will become a tradition for families.

“We’d like to continue doing this every year as a holiday event,” he said.

For more information, call 713-274-4160 or visit www.hcp4.net/community/parks/mercer.

mayra.cruz@chron.com

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