Bok Tower Gardens Christmas events, including the popular Holiday Home Tour at Pinewood Estate, will bring yuletide cheer to the Lake Wales landmark starting November 25 through January 8, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m daily.
The Holiday Home Tour of Bok Tower Gardens’ 20-room, 1932 Mediterranean-style Pinewood Estate is like taking a step back in time for a glimpse of how families might have celebrated the holidays during a bygone era. The estate’s decorations change each Christmas, and no two years are ever the same. For the 2016 edition, it is 1940’s post war and Pinewood Estate owner C. Austin Buck has invited his whole family to celebrate the holidays in Florida and the safe return of his son from the war, yielding this year’s design theme, “Home for the Holidays!”
Children are encouraged to tour the historic estate and participate in a hunt for a family of Pinewood Christmas Squirrels who are hiding throughout the Estate. Before or after the tour, families can also enjoy the all-new Hammock Hollow Children’s Garden with nearly three acres of nature inspired play areas and gardens.
For snacks and drinks, visitors can enjoy Pinewood Place located adjacent to the Estate and open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily through January 8, 2017. Following the Christmas season, Pinewood Estate will reopen to daily tours later in January.
The full schedule of Bok Tower Gardens Christmas events is as follows:
Holiday Home Tour at Pinewood Estate
Nov. 25 to Jan. 8
The 22nd Holiday Home Tour at Pinewood Estate, “Home for the Holidays” is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission is $20/adults; $9/children ages 5-12. Members: $7/adults; $6/children ages 5-12. All prices include general Gardens admission. Children under 5 free.
Christmas Carillon Concerts LIVE!
Nov. 25 to Jan. 8
Geert D’hollander performs Christmas music from around the world at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. every Thursday through Sunday on the 60-bell Singing Tower carillon. All 30-minute carillon concerts included with Gardens admission.
Winter Walking Tours
Nov. 25 to Jan. 8
Gardens’ volunteers lead an hour-long winter walking tour, sharing information about the flora and fauna and guiding visitors through the Gardens from the Visitor Center to the Singing Tower. Tours are Mondays through Saturdays at 10 a.m. and 12 p.m.; Sundays at 2 p.m. only. Included with Gardens admission.
Gingerbread Houses with Mrs. Claus
Nov. 27 and Dec. 11 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Join us for fun for the whole family and decorate your own gingerbread house and take a tour of the Holiday Home Tour. Each participant will receive their own gingerbread house to decorate and storybook to take home, which will be read by visiting Mrs. Claus. $40 per child, includes admission to Holiday Home Tour, gingerbread house and storybook (price includes admission for one chaperone). Regular admission applies to additional chaperones and guests.
1940’s HoliDAYS at Pinewood Estate
Nov. 29, Dec. 6, 13, 20 & 27 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
See vintage Model A’s outside Pinewood Estate, meet historical characters from the 1940’s, and catch a few surprise personalities from the past. Included with Gardens admission.
Sunset & Symphony Holiday Concert with the Orlando Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra with special guest Michael Andrew
Dec. 3 at 6 p.m.
Enjoy the sounds of the season as the Orlando Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra and Singing Tower carillon perform in one of Central Florida’s favorite holiday concerts. Visitors are encouraged to prepare themed picnics and arrive early to participate in the instrument petting zoo beginning at 4:30 p.m. Advance tickets are $20/adults; $8/children ages 5-12. Children under 5 free.
Holiday Happy Hour at Pinewood Estate
Dec. 7 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Join your friends for an early evening tour of Pinewood Estate and toast the season with a complimentary drink, light fare and holiday tunes. $35/person; ages 21 and older.
Lunch & Learn: Holiday Color with Plants
Dec. 7 at 12 p.m.
Horticulture experts from UF/IFAS Extension will teach you how to incorporate your plants into your holiday décor as well as what plants will add a festive flair to your yard during the holiday season. Included with Gardens admission.
Holiday Home Workshop “Living Succulent Wreath”
Dec. 10 from 9 am. to 12 p.m. or 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Spend the morning with Project Blooming founder, Linda Worle creating a succulent wreath that will last year-round. Workshop includes instruction, basic framework materials, and plants. Advance tickets are required and can be purchased for $70.
UF/IFAS Extension Partnership Celebrated Chef Series: Three Authors and A Rancher
Dec. 17 from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m.
“Field to Feast, Recipes Celebrating Florida Farmers, Chefs, and Artisans” authors Heather McPherson, Pam Brandon and Katie Farmand, along with members of the Lightsey Cattle family, will cook, entertain with stories, and serve small bites of everything from rib-eye hot off the grill to delicious olive oil cake. Each guest will receive a signed copy of “Field to Feast” ($29.95 value), and the authors will be on hand to personalize copies – with additional copies for sale at a discount for holiday gifts. Tickets are $55 per person.
Carillon & Chorale Concert plus Holiday Home Tour Open Late
Dec. 18 at 7:30 p.m.
Enjoy an hour-long carillon concert with a live choir under the stars. Pinewood Estate remains open late for a special nighttime tour complete with hot chocolate and cookies. Light dinner available at the Blue Palmetto Café before the concert for an additional fee. Last entry to Pinewood Estate is 7 p.m. Concert Only: $10/adult and $5/child. Concert & Home Tour: $18/adult and $11/child.
Christmas Day at Bok Tower Gardens
Celebrate Christmas Day and enjoy the sounds of the season with live carillon concerts at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Holiday Home Tour open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Café and gift shop open 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Note: Regular Gardens admission and Holiday Home Tour rates apply to Christmas Day.
Tickets for events can be purchased online at boktowergardens.org or by calling (863)734-1222. Bok Tower Gardens is a National Historic Landmark located in Lake Wales near Legoland. Bok Tower Gardens is open every day of the year from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Visitor Center, Café and Gift Shop are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $12 for adults and $3 for ages 5-12. Members and children under 5 are admitted free. Legoland ticket holders will receive free admission for children under 12.
For more information call 863-676-1408 or visit boktowergardens.org, and watch this episode of Daycation Kingdom for a look around the landmark: