The Chesapeake Bay, North America’s largest estuary, is a world-class ecological treasure. Take a short trip from D.C. to explore the rich and diverse landscapes of the region. The day starts on the Eastern Shore of Maryland at Adkins Arboretum. A model for land stewardship, featuring diverse habitats that support more than 600 species of native shrubs, trees, wildflowers, grasses, and ferns Adkins plays an important role in protecting the Chesapeake Bay.
Enjoy breakfast prepared by renowned chef Steve Konopelski; a walk-and-talk exploration of the Arboretum’s entrance garden with landscape architect Thomas Rainer; and time with staff from landscape design firm Campion Hruby to hear about new bioretention gardens in the parking area. Walk through the Arboretum’s native woodlands and meadows before departing for Annapolis. Considered a “lost town” from colonial times, Historic London Town & Gardens on the south bank of the South River consists of ten acres of woodland and ornamental gardens. Enjoy lunch overlooking the river before discovering London Town’s significant collections, including a variety of cold-hardy camellias, magnolias, azaleas, and peonies. Designed to highlight the site’s connection to the South River, the pathways and viewscapes highlight the gardens and the historic area, which includes an original c.1760 colonial tavern and two reconstructed buildings. Experience hands-on activities while roaming the grounds to learn more about the colonial period.
For the last stop of the day, travel five miles south to the Rhode River, where the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) serves as a leading laboratory for ground-breaking ecological research. Headquartered on the Chesapeake Bay, its 2,650-acre campus spans forests, wetlands, marshes, and fifteen miles of protected shoreline. Explore some of the land and water habitats with a guide and learn about Smithsonian science in the field.
Breakfast and lunch will be provided.
Departure: Tours depart outside the Blue Room Prefunction on the East side of the conference hotel. Please arrive no earlier than 15 minutes prior to departure time.
Additionally, the Association will not be able to accommodate participants driving their own vehicles to/from offsite locations. All attendees must board the bus at the hotel and return with the group at the scheduled times.