(08/08/22) BATON ROUGE, La. —The LSU AgCenter Burden Museum and Gardens and the LSU Rural Life Museum offer many activities for fall family fun.
If you have an interest in identifying birds in the area, then you should grab your birding gear and join us bright and early for a two-hour guided tour, which will last from 7 to 9 a.m. on Sept. 17, Oct. 22, Nov. 19 and Dec. 17. The tours will be led by birding specialists to catch a glimpse of some of the many species of birds at the new birding loops at Burden. Capacity for each tour is limited to 15 guests. And birders are encouraged to bring binoculars, a cellphone, birding apps and/or field guides, sunscreen, insect repellant, appropriate outdoor footwear, weather-appropriate clothing and layers, and water to stay hydrated. Tickets are $10 per person and are available at https://bit.ly/LSUAgBGEventbrite.
Children ages 3 to 8 can enjoy StoryTime in the Garden from 9 a.m. to noon at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens on selected Saturdays this fall. The event will feature storybook readings and themed activities beginning every half hour on Sept. 10, Oct. 1 and Nov. 12 at the pavilion. The last reading begins at 11:30 a.m. StoryTime is sponsored by the Junior League of Baton Rouge. Admission is free and registration is not required.
On Oct. 1 and 2, from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m., visitors can enjoy Harvest Days and the Corn Maze. Join us as we open our fields and crank up our tractors to usher in the fall season with some crazy, mazey outdoor fun. Activities include a corn maze, petting farm, hayride with satsuma picking, pumpkin patch, hay mountain corn crib, gargantuan games, sunflower fields, spook-tacular playground, temporary tattoo parlor, an antique tractor show and other fun-filled activities! And that’s just the Corn Maze activities.
With a joint ticket, you get a combination of what happens during the new harvest season versus the good ole days. At Harvest Days, you’ll see living history demonstrations that will interpret activities that took place on Louisiana farms during harvest time in the 1800s. Activities will include open-hearth cooking, soap-making and wagon rides. Festival foods including hotdogs, nachos and more will be available for purchase.
Admission to the events are as follows: Corn Maze/Harvest Days combo tickets are $25 per person and free for children 3 and under. Corn Maze only tickets are $15 per person and free for children 3 and under. All ages must have a ticket to enter. Harvest Days tickets are $12 for ages 12 and up, $10 for ages 4 to 11 and free for children 3 and under. All ages must have a ticket to enter. Tickets will not be sold at the gate — so place your order now at https://bit.ly/HDXCM22. Quantities are limited, so don’t wait.
On Saturdays in October, the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens offers family fun at the annual Corn Maze Saturdays at Burden. Dates for the event are Oct. 8, 15, 22 and 29 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and there will be three two-hour sessions.
On Saturday, Oct. 29, from 6 to 9 p.m., the crazy, mazey fun continues in the evening at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens Night Maze and Bonfire. Grab your costumes, glow sticks and flashlights and enjoy the family-friendly Night Maze. Event features a bonfire, hay mountain, go for a “swim” in the corn crib, games and a live concert featuring local bands. Tickets are available at https://bit.ly/CornMaze22. Night Maze tickets are not included with daytime Corn Maze at Burden admission and must be purchased separately. Admission is $15 per person and free for children two years old and younger. Tickets are pre-sale only and will not be offered at the gate. All ages must have a ticket to enter. Tickets are limited.
On Sunday, Oct. 30, from 2 p.m. until 4:30 pm., Haints, Haunts and Halloween at the LSU Rural Life Museum will let visitors relive the sights, sounds and activities of an old-fashioned country fair. Storytelling, cake walks, games and trick-or-treating are some of the events kids will be able to participate in while on the museum grounds. Admission will be charged. The event is recommended for children aged 2 to 9 years old.
On Sunday, Nov. 13, from noon to 2 p.m., Friends of LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden will present the 2022 Wine and Roses Rambler. Stroll through the gardens as you savor gourmet hors d’oeuvres, desserts, fine wines and specialty cocktails. Enjoy live music from the Civic Orchestra of Baton Rouge, a wine toss and a fabulous surprise raffle. Fanciful garden party attire is encouraged! Food will be provided by the Gilded Artichoke and desserts by Nannette Mayhall. Seafood provided by the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board. Event tickets are $100 per person and $90 for members of Friends of LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden, and are available at https://bit.ly/WineRoses2022. Also, $10 raffle tickets and $20 wine toss tickets are available online and at the event.
On Saturday, Nov. 26, beginning at 9 a.m., come out and enjoy the beauty of the annual Poinsettia Show and Sale. Everybody knows it’s not Christmas in Louisiana without Burden poinsettias. More than 20 varieties of locally grown poinsettias will be on display and available for sale at the Botanic Gardens greenhouse. The Botanic Gardens staff evaluates poinsettia varieties developed by breeders worldwide, and they will be exclusively sold at the annual show and sale. A limited number of each variety are available. Arrive on time so you don’t miss out on these unique varieties of poinsettias.
The Birding at Burden trail system consists of six loops that wind through Burden’s formal and informal gardens, grasslands, croplands, wetlands and forest. The loops are designed for both beginners and advanced bird enthusiast. Kiosks about the birding loops can be found at the Rural Life Museum Visitors Center and the Ione Burden Conference Center.
Trees and Trails, a 3-mile system of pedestrian, recreational and educational trails in the Burden Woods, provides opportunities for hiking and interpretive and educational activities for youth and adults. The Mosaic Boardwalk at Black Swamp guides visitors through a hardwood swamp more than 200 years old. The trail system is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every day.
The Children’s Garden offers a place to learn about gardening and nutrition. This model garden also provides a location for youth-related organizations and individual families to experience the outdoors, focusing on vegetable, herb and butterfly garden plantings.
The Rose Garden is a part of the American Garden Rose Selections program, a nationwide network of approved public gardens, and the American Rose Trials for Sustainability program, maintaining an inventory of 1,100 plants representing 150 varieties. Starting each April, the Rose Garden offers an exclusive preview of the coming year’s outstanding new varieties.
Windrush Gardens comprises majestic live oaks and ancient crape myrtles to create a shady canopy over azaleas and camellias, evoking a sense of tranquility and peace. Steele Burden, who was influenced by the gardens of Europe and the surviving gardens of 19th century Louisiana plantations, designed Windrush. The winding paths are ideal for strolling and enjoying the 25 acres of landscaped spaces.
Located at 4560 Essen Lane, just off Interstate 10 in Baton Rouge, Burden Museum & Gardens is open daily from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and includes the LSU Rural Life Museum, the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens and Windrush Gardens.
The LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens is an expansive collection of specialty gardens, woodlands, wetlands and arboreta. Trees and Trails offer 3 miles of serene walking paths through the Burden Woods. The Rose Garden, Children’s Garden and All-America Selections Display Garden showcase the beauty of plants and flowers and provide educational experiences for gardeners of all ages. No admission is charged to tour the gardens.
The LSU Rural Life Museum focuses on the ways of life of rural Louisiana during the 18th and 19th centuries. The museum also provides educational and research resources that advance an understanding of the material and cultural heritage of the region. Adjacent to the Rural Life Museum, the historic Windrush Gardens comprises 5 acres of semi-formal gardens of the Burden family.
Admission to the Botanic Gardens and Trees and Trails is free of charge and open daily 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission to the Rural Life Museum is $10 for adults 12 to 61, $9 for seniors and $8 for children 6 to 11. Admission to Windrush Gardens is $3 per person. Both are free for kids under 6. The LSU Rural Life Museum and Windrush Gardens are open daily 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except major holidays.
The Hay Mountain at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens Corn Maze is always a hit for those who still have lots of energy. Photo provided
Harvest Days visitors enjoy a wagon ride through the open-air museum. Photo provided