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Centennial Botanical Conservatory to Celebrate 50th Anniversary
Date: November 17, 2017
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November 17, 2017 – Residents are invited to attend Thunder Bay Centennial Botanical Conservatory’s 50th Anniversary Celebration on Saturday, Nov. 18, from 2:30 – 7:30 pm. The event will feature speaker presentations, a cake cutting, refreshments, live music, children’s activities and more.

The Thunder Bay Botanical Conservatory was as a Centennial project, to honour Canada in the celebration of its 100th birthday, which was to be left as a legacy to the community. The Conservatory was designed by famous American architects Lord & Burnham. The building boasted 18 tons of glass and steel, incorporating 3 tons of local Amethyst and granite with an original price tag of $162,000. The Conservatory structure, paid for by all three levels of government, was completed by the autumn of 1966 and planting began at that time. The 11,800 square foot building featuring plants from all over the world officially opened to the public on Nov. 18, 1967. 

“The Conservatory is a wonderful asset to our community,” said Mike Dixon, Supervisor – Forestry & Horticulture. “Since its inception, the Conservatory has been used for educational programs, seasonal displays, weddings, photography sessions, public events and special church services. Two additional growing greenhouses have been added to the existing one, giving staff 8,344 square feet of growing space. To this day, staff continues to grow all the annual flowers that adorn city parks, libraries and public spaces.”

Due to safety issues, in February 2012, the Conservatory was temporarily closed. The Conservatory re-opened to the public in February 2013, but due to ongoing safety concerns, both the Cactus House (west wing) and the seasonal display room (east wing) remain closed until further renovations are done to the building. The City is currently assessing the future needs of the Conservatory. Renovations for the building, will take place once the assessments are complete. The Conservatory attendance continues to grow, with over 21,000 visiting from January - August 2017.

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Contact: Mike Dixon, Supervisor – Forestry & Horticulture, City of Thunder Bay, 630-1769