10th Dazzling Daylilies Festival starts Thursday

Photo by Alan Warren, Messenger-Inquirer | awarren@messenger-inquirer.com Bill Tyler tags his favorite daylilies from his hybridized daylily seedling garden on Tuesday at the Western Kentucky Botanical Gardens. The garden is getting ready for its 10th anniversary of the Dazzling Daylilies Festival that starts Thursday with 10 days of activities.

The Western Kentucky Botanical Garden's Dazzling Daylilies Festival is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month with 10 days of activities.

It kicks off on Thursday with "Charcuterie Alongside The Daylilies" and a meeting of the Chamber Young Professionals at the Garden, 25 Carter Road.

Webstaurantstore.com says, "Charcuterie (pronounced "shahr-ku-tuh-ree") is the art of preparing and assembling cured meats and other meat products. But, many people use the term charcuterie to refer to an assortment of meats that are paired with different accompaniments, such as toast, fruit, cheese and sauces."

Chefs of the Garden and Jeanie Bosley Heath will be preparing the food.

But Saturday is the big day for the festival with a circus atmosphere throughout the Garden, starting at 5 p.m.

The lineup includes children's activities at 5, the Men's Mass Community Choir at 6 p.m. and the Owensboro Symphony Jazz Trio at 6:30 p.m.

Performers, including three Rizpah clowns, will be strolling through the Garden, starting at 5 p.m. Saturday, Susie Tyler, the Garden's executive director, said Tuesday.

She said several of the performers have strong resumes.

Rachel Clement, who will be performing contortion and with hula hoops and aerial silks, has traveled with the Cirque Dreams world tour, Tyler said.

Angel Noble, a stilt performer, has performed nationwide and overseas at such places as Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Tyler said.

"She was chosen to perform for President Obama and was personally requested by (producer) Jerry Bruckheimer to perform for an event at his private estate," she said.

Jim Wathen will appear as Mr. Popper the clown.

Mick Jeffries of Lexington

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will be playing the ukelele.

Sonya Blades of Lexington will demonstrate belly dancing and tai chi.

Hot-air balloon rides have been canceled this year.

"We've had so many weather problems with the balloon flights in the past," Tyler said. "But we will have tethered balloon rides from 5:30 to 8:30 Saturday night and a balloon glow at 8:30."

A balloon glow is created when burners atop the balloon gondolas are turned on, making the balloon glow.

During most of the festival, admission is free to members; $3 for seniors, $1 for students and youths and $5 for everybody else.

But on Saturday evening, the admission charge is $5 for anyone over 12.

Those under 12 get in free.

"I think we've got a winner," Tyler said. "It's going to be fun."

Friday will feature "Dogs By The Daylilies."

Tyler said people can bring their dogs to the garden that night.

"We'll have giveaways, dog photos with the daylilies, a dog dig and hot dogs and bark brew," she said.

Sunday will feature a cruise-in and sampler foods from two cookbooks.

A guided daylily tour is on tap for Monday.

Tuesday will feature photography in the garden and a Lunch, Listen, Learn program with Laura Teague of Teaguewood Daylily Garden.

Tyler said the Garden will be open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesday with photographers on hand to offer tips to those taking pictures to enter in the Garden's photo contest.

A guided hike for kids is scheduled on June 26.

Bluegrass fans attending ROMP at Yellow Creek Park are invited to tour the Garden on June 27 and 28.

"We had a nice group from ROMP last year," Tyler said. "This year, we're having a Popsicle station to cool them off."

The festival ends on June 29 with daylily sales, music and the announcement of the winners in the Name-A-Daylily and photography contests.

Tyler said during June and early July, the Garden's Daylily Dig Beds will be open for people to dig and purchase daylilies.

Prices are $10 and $12 per clump.

Keith Lawrence, 270-691-7301, klawrence@messenger-inquirer.com

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