Phipps Conservatory – Summer Family Fun

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Phipps Conservatory invited our family to a media day event to hear about the summer family fun that they have to offer. In exchange for our entrance to Phipps, we agreed to share this information with you. All opinions are 100% our own.

Phipps Conservatory

The four ‘lil Burghers embarked on their first ever trip to Phipps Conservatory this past weekend (Mom and Dad had gone before, but kept all the fun a big secret from the kiddos). On this trip, we were reminded to take the time and notice the beauty in nature but we also learned about what Phipps has to offer for summer family fun in 2019.

Phipps Conservatory – Summer Family Fun

Visit Pittsburgh’s Phipps Conservatory any day of the year with your kiddos and you’re sure to have a blast. There’s fun and learning to be had throughout and programs are offered year-round outside of general admission. But in the summer of 2019, Phipps is offering summer camps, discovery programs, and dynamic exhibits to enjoy while exploring the gardens on a visit.

Summer Camp at Phipps Conservatory

Phipps Summer Camps
source: Phipps Conservatory

Children ages 2-13 can explore Phipps this summer through their summer camp programs. (There are scholarships available, but must apply by May 29.) There are full-day programs (like Rockin’ Researchers with Let’s Move Pittsburgh) and four day programs for your ‘lil explorers (with adult supervision). In these programs, your children will connect with nature, learn about healthy and sustainable living, and can even get deeper information on botany! Check out every camp that Phipps has to offer here.

Discovery Programs at Phipps

Throughout the summer, bring your children to Phipps for weekly scheduled programs that will give them an added dimension of learning and fun to their visit. These are subject to change, but current offerings are:

  • Make-a-Craft Mondays (10:30 a.m. – noon)
  • Story Time Wednesdays (10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.)
  • Pot-a-Plant Fridays (10:30 a.m. – noon)

We got a chance to check out the Pot-a-Plant activity during our Discovery Garden Day visit – each of the kids was stpped through how to properly plant a zinnia and what it meant that it was an annual plant (to just enjoy this summer, kids!).

Mom recommends – if you are doing this activity, come with a tote bag (here‘s her current favorite) to carry the plants in or do this at the very end of your visit. Although they came in paper bags to carry, the kids really wanted their hands for exploring and mom didn’t want to be bogged down with the plants.

In addition to the weekly scheduled programs, there are pop-up discovery stations throughout the gardens that spotlight specific content. During our visit, we made seed balls in the Tropical Forest Cuba exhibit and did a scavenger hunt for (teeny, tiny!) plants in the Bog Garden. You never know what fun awaits until you go and check it out yourself!

Making a seed ball
On a scavenger hunt

Dynamic Exhibits at Phipps

Before you go on your visit to Phipps Conservatory, you might want to have a look at what exhibits are on their events calendar. We got to check out Van Gogh in Bloom – a transformation of Van Gogh’s paintings into plants and props (so beautiful) and the butterfly forest; however, these might change before your visit so know before you go!

But no matter when you visit, there is always something beautiful in bloom. We encourage you to add Phipps to our summer bucket list if you live in or are visiting Pittsburgh! Check out more photos from our visit here.

About Phipps Conservatory

The top five things we recommend you visit while at Phipps this summer (as per recommendation from Phipps’ Children’s programming director) are:

  • Van Gogh in Bloom
  • Butterfly Forest
  • Tropical Forest Cuba
  • Gallery Room Market
  • The Discovery Garden

About Phipps: Founded in 1893, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh, PA is a globally recognized green leader with a mission to inspire and educate all with the beauty and importance of plants; to advance sustainability and promote human and environmental well-being through action and research; and to celebrate its historic glasshouse. Encompassing 15 acres including a historic 14-room glasshouse, 23 distinct indoor and outdoor gardens and industry-leading sustainable architecture and operations, Phipps attracts nearly half a million visitors annually from around the world. Learn more at


Admission is $17.95 for adults, $16.95 for seniors and students, and $11.95 for children (2-18). Members and kids under 2 enter free.

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