McKee Botanical Garden announces its 2018-2019 schedule of events


McKee Botanical Garden pathway from Hall of Giants.

McKee Botanical Garden is pleased to announce its 2018-2019 Event Schedule and Exhibition. 

Beginning on January 5th through April 28th, 2019, McKee Botanical Garden will showcase Seward Johnson’s dramatic and monumental 25 ft. tall sculpture, Embracing Peace, along with twenty bronze sculptures from his Celebrating the Familiar series on display throughout the Garden. Embracing Peace, the centerpiece of this exhibition, is Johnson’s most renowned sculpture which honors the moment in New York City, August 14, 1945, that captured the jubilance of Americans when the end of World War II was announced. This exhibition also features twenty life-scale bronze figures depicting what Seward Johnson refers to as “the beautiful moments of ordinary life.” These extraordinary sculptures celebrate “the emotional and spiritual sustenance and pleasure that nature can provide to help us deal with life’s inevitable struggles.”  General admission rates and hours apply. For more information, call 772-794-0601 or visit

On Saturday, December 1, Phil Reid Photography will host Family Holiday Photo Day at McKee from 10:00 am to 3:45 pm, by appointment only.  Make your holiday cards extra special this year by taking advantage of a one-day opportunity to have a family or individual portrait taken on the historic Stone Bridge at McKee. The cost of $100 includes the sitting fee and 25 holiday cards.  Space is limited.  To schedule an appointment, call Phil Reid Photography at 772-559-5449 or  

Join us for our annual Holidays at McKee and Nights of Lights Celebration. Holidays at McKee are Friday, December 21st  through Sunday, December 23rd  from 6:00 – 8:00 pm each evening.  Nights of Lights are Friday, December 28th  through Sunday, December 30th from 6:00 – 7:30 pm.  Experience the Garden at night, aglow with thousands of colorful lights, lanterns and holiday décor, a 1924 Wurlitzer Band Organ, model-train display, holiday village and a visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus. The Garden will once again be illuminated with special lighting displays transforming McKee into an evening wonderland.  General admission rates apply.  The Garden will close at its regularly scheduled time of 5 pm and will re-open at 6 pm for the evening events.  Advance tickets are available at the Garden Gift Shop during regular business hours.

Join us for a luncheon, lecture and book signing by Tatiana Holway, author of The Flower of Empire: An Amazonian Water Lily, The Quest to Make it Bloom, and the World it Created.  Tatiana Holway’s story of the Victoria regia reveals the role this magnificent lily played in Victorian life, art and culture in England, particularly in the intense race among prominent Britons to be the first to coax the flower to bloom.  This event will be held on Thursday, January 17, at noon and the cost per person is $50, which includes lunch and an autographed copy of the book.  Call 772-794-0601 to register for this event. Advance registration is required. Seating is limited.

On Saturday, February 9, from 10 am to 3 pm, McKee will celebrate its 10th Annual Motor Car Exhibition “Chevrolet Corvette.”  Don’t miss out on this exceptional collection of more than 40 Chevrolet Corvettes. Every era of America’s Sports Car will be on display, from the first model in 1953 to the current model, including road cars and race cars from around the state.  General admission rates apply.  Advance tickets are available at the Garden Gift Shop during regular business hours.

For three days, Friday, March 15th through Sunday, March 17th, the Garden will host the 2nd Annual Garden & Antique Show and Sale.  Over 25 antique and art vendors from the Eastern U.S. will showcase a broad range of exquisite antique furniture, paintings, garden benches, fountains, accessories, statuary, estate jewelry, and more on display in the beautiful surroundings and historic buildings of McKee.   Hours are Friday and Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm, and Sunday 11 am to 4 pm. General admission rates apply.  Advance tickets are available at the Garden Gift Shop during regular business hours.

On Wednesday, March 27 at 2:00 pm, McKee will host a book signing and lecture by Karen Tripson, author of The Cooking Class in San Sebastian.  Karen, a granddaughter of Waldo and Elsebeth Sexton, will share some of her childhood memories including many trips to McKee Jungle Gardens, and will discuss her new novel about love late in life, aging, the challenges of staging a Basque art exhibit, Basque cuisine, and memories of Waldo Sexton.  Sample foods featured in the book, prepared by Tripson herself.  The cost is $20 for McKee members and $25 for non-members.  To register for this event, call 772-794-0601. Advance registration is required. Seating is limited.

Join us for the 9th Annual Fairy & Pirate Festival on Saturday, April 6, 2019, from 10 am to 1 pm.  McKee is transformed into a mythical and magical wonderland for fairies and pirates.  Activities include a treasure hunt, face painting, crafts and games, fairy manicures, dancing at the Maypole, and building a fairy house. Costumes are encouraged but not required.  General admission rates apply.  Advance tickets are available at the Garden Gift Shop during regular business hours.

On Saturday, June 15, 2019, we will host the 15th Annual Waterlily Celebration from 8:30 am to 2:00 pm.  Featuring over 80 varieties of waterlilies, over 300 potted and 100 free-range plants, hands-on repotting demonstrations, plant sales, plein air artists creating original works of art, plant experts and the Annual Waterlily Photo Contest on display in the Hall of Giants. General admission rates apply. Advance tickets are available at the Garden Gift Shop during regular business hours.

General admission rates are $12 Adults, $11 Seniors, and $8 Children ages 3-12. McKee members and children under 3 are free.  The last admission ticket is sold at 4 pm.

For more information, please visit or call 772-794-0601. 

About McKee Botanical Garden

McKee Botanical Garden is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to nurture and enhance a historic garden in a unique tropical setting for the education, enjoyment and enrichment of all.  McKee Botanical Garden is located at 350 US Highway 1 in Vero Beach.

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