“Who Lives Here?” at Morris Arboretum’s Garden Railway Opens Memorial Day Weekend !

Make tracks to Morris Arboretum this Memorial Day weekend and kick off the summer with the Grand Opening of the Garden Railway Display, celebrating its 16th year!  This year’s theme “Who Lives Here?” will utilize the houses as a fun way to engage kids by using their own imagination. Clues will be built into the houses, which visitors can use to determine who lives there.  The buildings will be fanciful dwellings, such as a really, really tall giraffe’s house offset by a tiny little home for a hummingbird. A coiled house for a snake will feature shingles that resemble scales, and a possum’s home will hang upside down from a tree. This year’s display will again, surely delight visitors both young and old.

Grand Opening activities will take place on Saturday, May 24 from 1-3pm, including free ice cream (while supplies last) beginning at 1pm.

With a changing theme each year, the Garden Railway display is a miniature world with a quarter mile track running through it, all set in the splendor of Morris Arboretum’s summer garden.  It features loops and tunnels, bridges and trestles and all of the miniature buildings are created entirely of natural materials, each meticulously detailed with leaves, bark, vines and twigs. Logs and branches are also used to create unique tunnels and overhead trestles. Nestled among woody plants, colorful annuals and perennials, the finished product is an enchanting landscape that never ceases to delight visitors both young and old. Free with regular admission. Check out for special events all summer long.

Garden Railway is open every day through Labor Day, September 1st, from 10am to 4pm during the week and 10am to 5pm on weekends.  After September 1st, the Railway will remain open on the weekends from 10am-5pm through Columbus Day, October 13.  On Wednesday evenings in June, July and August, the Arboretum is open until 8:00 pm and the trains will run until 7:30pm.  Special weekends are planned throughout the summer, including Thomas the Train Engine Week, Circus Week and other surprise events.

Thomas the Train Engine & Friends Weekend  Saturday, July 12 and Sunday July 13 and an additional weekend Saturday, August 2 and Sunday August 3. Come visit the Garden Railway and see Thomas & Friends take over the tracks.

Circus Week at the Garden Railway  Daily Saturday, June 28 through Sunday, July 6 and an encore week Saturday August 23 through Monday, September 1. The first circus was held in Philadelphia in 1793.  Come see the Big Top and the circus trains, learn the history of the circus and watch for a few surprises.

During your visit, be sure to stop at The Shop at Morris Arboretum for unique Arboretum-branded merchandise.  The Shop specializes in, environmentally-friendly reuse of materials, and items inspired by nature, with an emphasis on birding this season.  And for the person, who has everything, think about the gift of a Morris Arboretum membership, the gift that lasts all year long.

The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania is located at 100 East Northwestern Avenue in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia.  The 92-acre horticulture display garden features a spectacular collection of mature trees in a beautiful and colorful landscape. The Arboretum includes numerous picturesque spots such as a formal rose garden, historic water features, a swan pond, and the only remaining freestanding fernery in North America. A new permanent nationally award winning exhibit, Out on a Limb – a Tree Adventure adds to Morris Arboretum’s allure by transporting visitors 50 feet up into the treetops on a canopy walk that requires no climbing.  The Morris Arboretum’s new Horticulture Center Complex has received Platinum Level LEED® Certification, the highest sustainability rating of the U.S. Green Building Council. For more information,