With just over a month before the opening of the 20th anniversary Rhode Island Spring Flower and Garden Show, the attractions continue to grow. This year’s show, to be held February 21-24, will have something new even before attendees enter the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence. To enter the garden display area, patrons will pass under a 14-foot-tall pergola decorated with flowers constructed by Walpole Woodworkers. Inside, the gardens and vignettes beckon with a larger waterfall, a nautical-themed garden featuring an actual sailboat and a walk through the history of the show through one gardener’s display of each of the Flower Show’s 20 theme posters.
Kevin O'Connor, host of television’s pioneer home improvement series “This Old House,” will be a featured speaker at this year’s show. O’Connor joins a roster of garden and horticultural experts including author and landscape designer Julie Moir Messervy and nationally known gardening expert and author Melinda Myers who will appear during the Flower Show’s Bartlett Tree Lecture Series.
A favorite of show attendees, the Marketplace returns with more flower market vendors, a build your own bouquet station, pottery and vases, garden and lawn ornamentals including copper pieces made in Lincoln.
Again this year, the show presents its exclusive Food and Wine Festival from 1-6 p.m. each day of the Flower Show in the Fifth Floor Ballroom in the Convention Center. Featured will be continuous chef demonstrations in the Rhode Island Kitchen and Bath Theatre Kitchen with celebrity chefs including “Top Chef” Tiffani Faison; Sara Moulton of public television’s “Sara’s Weeknight Meals;” Nemo Bolin, chef-proprietor of Cook and Brown Public House in Providence; and Johnson & Wales University chef educators Frank Terranova, Neath Pal and Ciril Hitz. Wines from all over the world will be available for sampling with tastings led by wine personalities such as Randy Arnold “The Barefoot Guy” pairing foods and wines.
Advance tickets are now on sale through Feb. 15 at www.flowershow.com. Advance ticket prices start at $17 per person with Combo tickets for both the Flower Show and Food and Wine Festival on sale for $30. Advance tickets for the Flower Show only are available at AAA Southern New England offices.
Show hours are Feb. 21, 22 and 23 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and, Feb. 24 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The 2013 Rhode Island Spring Flower and Garden Show is sponsored by AAA Southern New England, Alex and Ani, Ambius, Bartlett Tree, Brickman, Cardi’s Furniture, Coast 93.3, D & D Mulch, J & J Materials Corp., NBC 10, 920 WHJJ, Providence Media, Scott Volkswagen and Walpole Woodworkers. The Food and Wine Festival at the Flower Show is sponsored by Barefoot Wines and Bubbly, Johnson & Wales University and Whole Foods. For more information visit www.flowershow.com.