RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – For seven nights in November, the magical lighting exhibition Moonlight in the Garden will illuminate and showcase JC Raulston Arboretum at North Carolina State University.
Sold out every evening in 2018 and 2019 and on hiatus for the past two years, Moonlight in the Garden provides the only opportunity to access and experience the JC Raulston Arboretum after dark.
“Moonlight in the Garden is a chance for us to light up the garden and share what a magical place the Arboretum can be at night,” said Mark Weathington, director of the JC Raulston Arboretum. “The lighting displays and the artistic uses of light show how different a garden looks and what can be done to make it an enchanting space into the night.”
Exhibition dates include a special Preview Night, with finger food and beverages, on Tuesday, November 8, 6:30-9:00 PM; plus, presentations on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, November 10-12 and 17-19, with timed entries between 5:30 and 9:30 PM. A limited number of tickets are available; click here to order.
“Together with the colorful and festive lighting exhibition, Moonlight in the Garden is a time to bundle up, welcome the fall season, dine at the best food trucks, enjoy the live music, have some hot cider, and roast marshmallows over the fire pits,” said Weathington.
Moonlight in the Garden is a favorite for families looking for a multi-generational family-friendly event that brings together people of all ages to enjoy an evening in the garden. New this year will be the lighting of several dramatic stone sculptures by local artist Phil Hathcock and a series of Chinese lanterns in Asian Valley.
“Children love being in the garden, respond well to beauty, and appreciate and enjoy something that looks and feels magical. Anything you do that gets children out and looking at plants, gardens, and natural areas is an important thing,” noted Weathington. “It’s a powerful way to instill an appreciation for the environment around them. Of course, they also love roasting marshmallows, hot apple cider, and creating blacklight art.”
Advance tickets are $20 for members of the Arboretum, $30 for nonmembers, and $5 for children under 12. A limited number of “Anytime” tickets are available to JCRA members only, which can be used on the day and time of the member’s choosing (excluding Preview Night) for $30. All ticket sales are limited – online reservations are recommended.
Moonlight in the Garden is sponsored by the North Carolina Agricultural Foundation and custom designed and installed by Southern Lights of Raleigh.
“Nature brings joy to life, and illumination at night reveals new dimensions of nature,” said John Garner, Project Chair and President of Southern Lights of Raleigh. “Moonlight in the Garden is a huge lighting exhibition, using miles of cable powered by dozens of transformers to showcase the Arboretum with the latest and best technologies.”
“We have one night exclusively for professional members of the community on Wednesday, November 9,” added Garner. “This will be open to landscape architects and designers, interior designers, engineers, and lighting design professionals. Continuing education credits will be provided by the NC Board of Landscape Architects to participating landscape architects.”
The JC Raulston Arboretum is one of North America’s most diverse botanical gardens, featuring a constantly changing collection of over 8,000 different types of plants. Ranked in the top 95 percentile in plant diversity based on benchmarking by the American Public Gardens Association, the Arboretum’s mission includes plant collection, research, distribution, and education.
Proceeds from Moonlight in the Garden will benefit the daily operations of JC Raulston Arboretum. Moonlight in the Garden is sponsored by, and fund-raising efforts operate under the auspices of the NC Agricultural Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit (tax ID 56-6049304).
JC Raulston Arboretum is on Beryl Road in Raleigh between Meredith College and the NC State Fairgrounds.
Click here to order Moonlight in the Garden tickets
Click here for media photographs and logos
Click here to read expanded interviews with Mark Weathington and John Garner
Click here for Moonlight in the Garden details
Click here for Preview Night details
Mark Weathington, Director
JC Raulston Arboretum
Arlene Calhoun, Associate Director
JC Raulston Arboretum
John Garner, Volunteer Chair
Moonlight in the Garden
Southern Lights of Raleigh
Permission granted for redistribution – photo credits required
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