Leila Arboretum’s Fantasy Forest is Free and Perfect for Family Fun
Battle Creek’s Leila Arboretum is one of the city’s premier family attractions. This 72-acre park is open to the public and offers walking trails, the Kaleidoscope Garden (children’s garden), Kingman Museum, a disc golf course, perennial gardens, native flower gardens, sculptures, and hundreds of trees and shrubs of many varieties. Fantasy Forest is a newer addition to the arboretum, and it is comprised of many woodcarving sculptures of dragons, wizards, and more. We recently visited this magical and free family attraction and will be sharing some photos with you today.
First, a bit of history about how this project came about, from the Battle Creek’s Fantasy Forest Facebook page: “The 2015 Fantasy Forest Art Competition was an amazing display of artistic talent and creativity, which resulted in transforming a grove of 100-year-old Ash trees (which had been killed by the Emerald Ash Borer) into stunning works of art. The Fantasy Forest at Leila Arboretum, in Battle Creek, MI, is now filled with wizards, castles, dragons, and other mythical creatures. Thousands of visitors from all across the United States have been able to enjoy this FREE Sculpture Garden. Battle Creek’s Fantasy Forest grew in 2016 with the addition of 14 new sculptures. Commissioned artists from around the country used chainsaws, paint brushes, and more, and continued the transformation of Leila Arboretum’s Fantasy Forest.”
Each sculpture features artist information. You’ll notice many pop culture inspired pieces here (Trolls, Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy) as well as pieces inspired by Michigan. The intricate detail of each piece is amazing, especially when you think about it being done by chainsaw. Leila Arboretum is located at 928 W. Michigan Ave. and it is open to the public free of charge seven days a week (sunrise to sunset). You can find out more about the arboretum and see a map of the entire grounds at: https://lasgarden.org/.
If you enjoy the Fantasy Forest at Leila Arboretum, you might also want to check out our post about Leik Grove in Portland’s Bogue Flats Recreation Area!