Gnome Away From Home opens at Garfield Park

GnomeShow-GarfieldPark_Indy's Child MagazineConservatory {kuhn-sur-vuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee} noun. 2. a greenhouse, usually attached to a dwelling, for growing and displaying plants.

Gnome {nohm} noun. 1. {in folklore} One of a species of diminutive beings, usually described as shriveled little old men, that inhabit the interior of the earth and act as guardians of its treasures; troll.

Spring Break. noun. 1. a vacation from school or college during the spring term, lasting about a week.

I am not sure what school or college gnomes attend but let me assure you, they are most definitely on spring break … and you can find them at the Garfield Park Conservatory on the south side of Indy. Garfield Park has opened a Gnomes Away From Home exhibit! My kiddos are not on break quite yet but this weekend we trekked down from Hamilton County to take a quick trip around the world with some of our little garden friends.

GnomeShow-GarfieldPark_Indy's Child Magazine

This probably comes as no surprise {if you’ve read my other posts} but we had never been to Garfield Park before. Driving there I was pretty certain that we were in the wrong part of town – a greenhouse and sunken garden in the middle of a big neighborhood? No way! But alas, we found it right away with no problem.

When we walked into the conservatory we were greeted by a friendly face and a warm atmosphere {seriously, it was hot in there}. They have a nice set up once you walk through the first set of doors – and may I just say, that second room is much cooler. Be sure to grab your passport photo and your scavenger hunt list on your way to the actual conservatory… it will really get the kids excited about walking through a “bunch of plants”.

GnomeShow1-GarfieldPark_Indy's Child MagazineContrary to popular belief, kiddos can actually have a lot of fun walking around the 10,000 square foot temporary gnome village.

The scavenger hunt list was full of items that my two children & three of their friends set out to find.

While they were busy searching for the 16 little details hidden in the displays {it may have taken two trips around the path} I took a few moments to enjoy the scenery. Originally built in 1914, the conservatory houses hundreds of different plants from tropical regions all over the world. It was interesting to see what all was there this year! And I wasn’t the only one; there were many photographers walking around trying to grab that perfect shot of the prettiest plants.

But back to the gnomes and their spring break; they sure do like to travel! We found them at the Great Pyramids and Indiana University, in Key Largo, Hollywood, Paris, and Ireland, just to name a few. The kids did such a good job working as a team, trying to find those scavenger hunt items. I even found myself joining in – I couldn’t resist!

I don’t want to ruin the fun of the mini-adventure for you though… if you’re looking for something to do on your spring break this coming week head on over to Garfield Park. Rain or shine the conservatory is open and you can get some of that warm, tropical weather right here in Indy. But hurry, the gnomes head back home on April 4th!

GnomeShow-GarfieldPark_indy's Child Magazine

MORE INFO: The Garfield Park Conservatory is located at 2505 Conservatory Avenue, in Indianapolis. Hours are Monday-Saturday from 10am-5pm and Sunday from 1pm-5pm. Admission to the Gnomes Away From Home exhibit is $4/person or $10/family. The gnomes are visiting until April 4th. For other information, visit

Megan Leahy - Indy's Child Digital Writer

A 30-something stay-at-home-mom of two, Megan Leahy is an Indy transplant who doesn’t like to stay at home. Originally from central Illinois, you can find her anywhere from the public library returning an overdue book or Target buying more than she went in for to taking her husband & kiddos out on the town or spending time with her friends at a local hot spot.

Megan is an avid volunteer who loves working with children and helping those in need. In 2015 she founded Pals on Patrol, a non-profit that collects new/very gently used stuffed animals that police, fire/rescue, and DCS staff can give to children in time of crisis. Follow her on Twitter or check out

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