2019 Convention – Trips

Cincinnati Celebrates Gesneriads
July 2 to July 6, 2019

Several fun-filled and educational trips are planned for Convention 2019, and you won’t want to miss them! All tours are handicapped accessible.

On Monday, July 1, we will board our air-conditioned bus for a morning tour of the 733 acres of towering trees, 15 lakes, and 44 miles of roadways that are found in Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum. Spring Grove is currently a level 3 Arboretum and working on becoming a level 4 (the highest level). A local horticulturist will describe some of the 28 Ohio State Champion Trees and over 1200 labeled plants found there. Along with the renowned distinction of being the second largest cemetery in the United States, Spring Grove Cemetery is also proud of its designation as a National Historic Landmark. Spring Grove is one of only seven cemeteries to hold this national honor.

Established as a non-profit cemetery in 1845, this is NOT your typical cemetery. The beautiful landscape was designed by the internationally renowned landscape architect Adolph Strauch. No headstones are found there. Strauch encouraged families to purchase large plots of land and to erect one grand monument on each plot. There are Gothic cathedrals, Greek temples, and other interesting buildings, each with a beautiful view made for photography.

Next we will travel to Cincinnati’s northern edge, the historic Over-the-Rhine (OTR) neighborhood. We will make a brief photo stop at Washington Park and view the newly renovated Music Hall. We will stop for lunch at Taft’s Ale House where we will have lunch on our own. Taft’s Ale House is a micro-brew pub constructed in 1850 where 25,000 historic Rookwood architectural tiles are installed.

After lunch, we will have a guided tour of the historic Rookwood Pottery Company founded 130 years ago by pioneering artist Maria Longworth-Nichols. The company today continues to create the highest quality Art Pottery and Architectural Tile. Our trip back to the hotel will be a brief bus tour of the Riverfront area including The Banks, Smale Riverfront Park, and the sports stadiums. We might even stop at Graeter’s Ice Cream if there is time!

On Tuesday, July 2, there will be two trips offered. The morning trip will travel to beautiful Eden Park for a spectacular photographic view overlooking the Ohio River, then on to Krohn Conservatory, a beautiful art deco glasshouse built in 1933. The rainforest-under-glass exhibit contains more than 5,000 plants from all over the world. There is also an internationally known “Butterfly Show” where thousands of butterflies are free to fly free throughout a specially themed garden. Next we will visit the Cincinnati Art Museum, also located in Eden Park, which features a diverse collection of more than 65,000 artworks spanning 6,000 years including paintings, sculptures, decorative arts, fashion, photography, and prints. A special Asian exhibit (more information to be announced in early 2019) may be viewed for an additional cost if you choose. The museum has two Rookwood areas of note. The “Dueling Divas” Exhibit describes the early rivalry of its founder and her competitor, essentially starting the Art Pottery Movement in the US in the 1870s. The Cincinnati Wing also has an extensive collection of historic Rookwood pottery along with Architectural Faience. You may lunch on your own at the Terrace Cafe.

An afternoon tour of the Rookwood Pottery Company will be offered for those who were unable to attend the Monday tour. The bus will leave the museum at 12:30 p.m. with attendees who want to return to the hotel or go to the Rookwood factory and will pick up those going to Rookwood from the hotel at approximately 12:45 p.m. Morning tour people not going to Rookwood may elect to remain at the museum for an extended visit or return to the hotel on the 12:30 p.m. bus. The bus will return to the museum at about 2:30 p.m. to bring everyone back. Attendees will also have the opportunity to explore Findlay Market in the Over-the- Rhine area on their own after the Rookwood factory tour; however, those touring Findlay Market will need to arrange their own transportation back to the hotel. The Cincinnati Bell Connecter (modern streetcar system) is convenient and costs just $1.00 to ride back downtown near the hotel.

“Belle of Cincinnati” Riverboat

On Saturday, July 6, we will travel a short distance across the Ohio River to the Kentucky side to board the “Belle of Cincinnati”, a restored paddle-wheel riverboat for a dinner cruise on the Ohio River. A delicious buffet dinner will be served with a cash bar available. We have the third floor reserved for us, which is accessible by elevator. This cruise is a great way to see the lights of Cincinnati. Since it is the 4th of July weekend, there will probably be some fireworks!

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