By Molly Daly
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (CBS) — The best way to start your visit to this year’s Philadelphia Flower Show is with the entrance garden, the first of countless “wows” the show delivers.
I talked to Sam Lemheney, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society‘s chief of shows and events, as the frames were going up. This year, he notes, the inspiration for the entranceway comes from the work of Alexander Calder.
“We’re very excited with the bright, bold color of flowers that we have,” Lemheney said. “Lots of fresh flowers, and lots of hanging pieces to really take the inspiration from his mobile work as well. So you’re going to have flowers on the ground as well as over your head, and be able to walk through and under them, and really feel that you’re part of the artwork.”
Adding to the excitement will be performances by Bandaloop, a troupe of vertical/aerial dancers.
Lemheney says that after 18 months of planning, it’s not the end of the flower show he’s looking forward to.
“I love opening day,” he says, “watching the visitors come in and seeing the smiles, and seeing them reach for their cameras and taking pictures. It’s that ‘wow’ factor that we give the visitor when they come in. If you haven’t been in a long time, you’ve got to come this year, because it’s going to be pretty special.”
Lemheney says this year’s show includes a brand new event: the show’s first live butterfly exhibit, in which visitors can walk among more than 1,000 native and exotic butterflies.
Hear the extended interview with Sam Lemheney in this CBS Philly podcast…
— (Part 1, runs 9:59)