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For Immediate Release: April 21, 2014

Huntsville Botanical Garden Opens Alice's Garden of Wonders to Chain Saw Carving and Butterflies

HUNTSVILLE BOTANICAL GARDEN                                                                   April 21, 2014
Carol Casey
Director of Communications
(256) 830-4447 ext. 290



Don’t be late for this very importa¬nt date. Huntsville Botanical Garden is turning over the Garden to the Queen of Hearts, Tweedledee and Tweedledum.Take a tumble down the Rabbit Hole and explore Alice’s Garden of Wonders. Play the Queen of Hearts’ Chess and visit her castle, locate the Cheshire Cat, play croquet and enjoy all of the wonders of Wonderland. Take a stroll through the door maze that features over 60 doors hand-painted and decorated by local artists.

Opening weekend will include the wonder of a rabbit over 6 feet tall being carved from a tree truck of red oak by chain saw artist Roark Phillips. Phillips, a self-taught chainsaw carver, has been carving since the spring of 2006. He lives in Fayetteville, Tennessee, with his wife, Terrie. During carving events, he has met many wonderful people across the United States and other countries as well. Phillips has created various sculptures of nature from bears and eagles to horse benches. He also creates rustic one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture. His work is created in his studio and in competitive events which have led to him having sculptures in 32 states and 4 countries. When Phillips is not creating sculptures in his studio, he carves at competitions, county fairs, onsite stumps and grand openings. He took first place in the Master Piece division of the Buzz in the Blue Ridge held in Helen, Georgia, in the summer of 2011. Two years in a row he won first place at the Real Squeal held in Lyons, Georgia. Phillips has taken first place in many quick carve events also. 
Phillips’ studio is open to the public MOST Saturdays and can be found in his hometown of Fayetteville, Tennessee. You can contact him at 931-625-2162 or visit his website at www.roarkphillips.com. You can also find him on Facebook. You can watch this amazing work of art Saturday, May 3, 9 am – 4 pm and Sunday, May 4, 1 – 3 pm.

Also, on May 3 is the seasonal opening of the Purdy Butterfly House. The sight of whirling, fluttering, swoop¬ing butterflies in a kaleidoscope of colors is nothing short of magic at the Purdy Butterfly House. Children will hold their breath when a Monarch lands on their shoulders or squeal with joy as a Spice Bush Swallowtail flutters by. On May 3 this 9000 square-foot screened conservatory filled with lush plants and flowers becomes the home to many species of brightly colored butterflies. You’ll also see Zebra Longwings, Zebra Swallowtails, Queens, Sulfurs, Cabbage Whites, Tiger Swallowtails, Black Swallowtails, Red Admirals and Luna Moths – around 2,000 butterflies in all! Look closely and you’ll see eggs the butterflies have laid, as well as caterpillars crawling (and chewing) on the plants. Along with butterflies, be on the lookout for turtles sunning themselves in the pond or digging in the dirt. Box Turtles, as well as Red Eared and Yellow Bellied Pond Slider turtles, and Coturnix Quail, call the open-aired haven home.

The Butterfly Discovery Cart will help you encounter even more wonders of the nature center. Come see the flurry of activity going on now in the Purdy Butterfly House! Get caught up in the excitement of the never-ending tea party and take advantage of all of the picture-perfect photo ops. Get ready for tea time! May – August, 2014. Huntsville Botanical Garden.

Huntsville Botanical Garden is open year-round and features the nation’s largest open-air butterfly house, a picture-perfect aquatic garden, spectacular nature trails, numerous specialty gardens – including an interactive children’s garden - and a variety of plant collections. This beautiful 112-acre Garden is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization run by less than 30 full time employees and over 2600 active volunteers.  With five distinct festivals each year: Beaks & Barks, Huntsville Blooms, Summer Butterfly House, Fall Scarecrow Trail and Holiday Galaxy of Lights, you’ll soon see why we say There’s Always Something Growing On at Huntsville Botanical Garden!