The Botanic Garden at Historic Barns Park is located on the grounds of the former Traverse City State Hospital. The freshly renovated Visitor Center is a bright and beautiful building that was once the farm Granary, built around 1886. The open air Pavilion once served as the farm’s crop storage building, with the root cellar below that was finished around 1891. The original stone walls and tunnel (appropriately nicknamed the Tunnel of Love!) connected the farm’s root cellar to the Granary’s lower level.
Environmental sustainability is a guiding principle of The Botanic Garden and some of the many ‘green’ components of the renovation include energy saving lighting, heating & cooling and water conservation systems, a V-shaped roof that collects and stores rainwater for garden irrigation, recycled materials including wood paneling from Manistee’s Vogue Theater and even original cast iron cow water buckets from the adjoining barn that now serve as lighting fixtures!
The original Horse Barn foundation has been converted into the Walled Garden and has served as a beautiful blooming backdrop for wedding ceremonies.
The Visitor Center is outfitted with modern technology like WiFi, a sound bar with Bluetooth (folks often use their smartphones with their own music playlists wirelessly!), a wall-mounted monitor with HDMI cables, plus presentation tools like flip charts and white boards. The Pavilion features twinkly string lighting and electrical outlets and electricity is also available in the Walled Garden.
The Visitor Center meeting room, the open-air Pavilion, the Walled Garden and the large tent lawn adjoining the Visitor Center are available for weddings, bridal and baby showers, memorial and celebration of life services, family reunions, business retreats and meetings, graduation and holiday parties, social and networking events, and much more. We’d love to help you plan the event of your dreams in the Garden!
Interested in a whole-park rental of The Botanic Garden + The Cathedral Barn venues? We can do that!
A special discount is available for Botanic Garden Members and non-profit organizations. The Visitor Center meeting room can be rented year-round.
Next on our list is the 100-year-old Wagon House, which will be renovated into a classroom and be available for rentals in the future.