4th Photo Contest
Sep 1 – Nov 30 all-day

We are seeking images that convey the beauty of the Arboretum throughout the year. Photographers of all ages and talent are encouraged to participate!

For more information and complete submission guidelines, click here.
Explore the Autumn Sky
Oct 26 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Explore the Autumn Sky
Join the Ames Area Amateur Astronomers for a guided tour of the autumn night sky. You’ll have a chance to trace out the constellations as well as see colorful double stars, nebulae, galaxies, and possibly a planet or two. We will have several large telescopes and binoculars on sight. The event is open to all ages, and snacks will be provided.
Free event
Holiday Sale
Nov 17 @ 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Delight in holiday treats and sounds as the festive season begins at the Arboretum’s gift shop. Find the perfect gift at the Holiday Sale. All gift shop items purchased will get complimentary gift wrapping.

Story County Master Gardener Symposium
Nov 17 @ 9:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Story County Master Gardener Symposium

Story County Master Gardener Association


A Symposium for Gardeners

November 17, 2018    9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Iowa Arboretum, 1875 Peach Avenue, Madrid


9:00 Registration

9:45 Mark Stoltenberg – Better Flower and Garden Photography

11:00 Jamie Beyer – Wildlife in the Garden – The Good and the Bad

11:30 Lunch

12:45 Dr. Cindy Haynes – Milkweeds and Butterfly Nectar Plants for Gardens

 2:00 Dr. Donald Lewis – Pollinators

 3:00 Break

 3:15 Deb Lewis – What Should I Call This? Naming and Identifying Plants

Not just for master gardeners, this symposium provides an opportunity to learn about a variety of gardening topics. It also serves as five hours of continuing education hours for Master Gardeners.

Cost is $50 per person. Lunch is provided as part of the registration fee. Proceeds benefit horticulture programs supported by Story County Master Gardener Association.

Questions? Email  Also, check out Story County Master Gardener Association on Facebook and ISU Extension online!



Name: _______________________________________________ Vegetarian Meal: Yes____

Address: ____________________________________________________________________

City, State, Zip: _______________________________________________________________

Phone: _______________________________ Email: _________________________________

Please make checks payable to SCMGA and send with your registration to:  SCMGA, PO Box 164, Ames, IA 50010.   Deadline for registration is November 7th.

Dec 1 – Dec 16 all-day
Art Mart
Dec 1 @ 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
Art Mart

Enjoy handmade gifts made from local artisans. An informal consortium of local crafters offer you their best of the season with some vendors dedicating a percentage of sales to charity. Payments by checks and cash are always appreciated.

Dad’s Belgian Waffles
Dec 1 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

Dad’s Belgian Waffles returns to the Arboretum to serve mammoth size waffles that will fill your plate and satisfy your appetite. See wonderfully Iowa Grown and decorated Christmas trees. Santa will be flying in from the North Pole to make a guest appearance. A great event for the entire family. Price: $9

Evergreen Wreath Workshop
Dec 2 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Evergreen Wreath Workshop

Join us for this festive class! Participants will use fresh-cut greens to create an evergreen wreath for the holiday season that you can hang up that day. With proper care your wreath will last into the new year. Please bring hand clippers and light garden gloves.  Make sure to pre-register to secure your spot in this popular class! LIMITED ENROLLMENT. Adult program. Children can participate with a grown up.

$30 members, $35 nonmembers

Evergreen Centerpiece Workshop
Dec 8 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Evergreen Centerpiece Workshop

In this make-and-take class, participants will use fresh-cut greens to create a tabletop arrangement that will last well into the new year. Sandy Gossman will teach you how to produce the perfect centerpiece for your table. Enjoy it in your own home or make it a great gift for another. You will learn how to distinguish between different kinds of evergreens and how to use floral wet foam, wrap, picks and wire. Review basic elements of design and experiment with embellishments such as ribbons and ornaments. Please bring your own clippers and light work gloves. Preregistration is highly encouraged to ensure the availability of materials. Limited enrollment.

Children are welcome accompanied by an adult in making their project. Children who wish to complete a separate project need to pay a separate workshop fee.


$25 members, $30 nonmembers

Jan 19 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Come and test out some snowshoes! Boone County Naturalist Katie Healy will be here to teach participants how to snowshoe on January 19 and February 16. Join us for a discussion about snowshoeing before hitting the trails to experience snowshoeing for yourself. Afterwards, regroup in the Hughes Education Building for a cup of hot cocoa. If there’s no snow, join us instead for a winter hike along the same route. Snowshoes will be provided.

Call or email Katie HealyBoone County Naturalist, to register and to reserve your snowshoes in advance 515-230-3285

Free program.