Nature lovers take heart: You’ve got a new venue in Westchester at which to wax arboreal. That’s because the Lasdon Park & Arboretum debuted its brand-new Lasdon Conservatory on June 17, after a decade in production. The facility’s premiere exhibit is titled “The Rainforest: Tropical Treasures.”
“It is a collection of tropical treasures, with different plant species and explanations of what they are and their importance in the ecosystem,” says Westchester County Parks Deputy Commissioner Peter Tartaglia. “We also had all sorts of events on the opening weekend, like face-painting for the kids.”
In addition to the exotic plants that represent the sights of a rainforest, the exhibit features the sounds of the rainforest, including waterfalls, jaguars, and even poison dart frogs.
The 2,500 sq ft, glass-and-steel structure was designed by the illustrious Rough Brothers, Inc., the same construction firm that created the New York Botanical Gardens, the US National Arboretum, and London’s Royal Botanical Gardens. “We are looking at this as like a mini-botanical gardens,” says Tartaglia, who mentions plans for upcoming events including weddings, concerts, and holiday shows. “It looks like it really belongs here, and the conservatory adds a special element to the park,” Tartaglia adds.
With $1.3 million in subsidies from the county, the conservatory marks the first of its kind in the region. Tartaglia believes it will draw not only county residents but also visitors from New York City, Connecticut, and Upstate New York.