Gates open on annual sculpture garden display
IF you’re looking for something nice to do on the last few weekends of spring, consider visiting a seasonal open garden in the region.
Thirty minutes south of Bendigo you’ll find Mica Grange’s Spring Open Garden Sculpture Exhibition, which spans more than three acres and looks over the Sutton Grange Valley.
Following their retirement, owners Bede and Mary Gibson moved from Sydney to the property about 12 years ago and started their own private garden.
They were then approached by Open Gardens Australia to see if the pair would like to share the space with the public.
“This was our retirement project,” said Mr Gibson. “We saw the potential of having a big, large garden in the country and that’s what we did.
“We thought well rather than just being another open garden, we might ask a few sculptors to exhibit, so there was something else to do.
“We asked four sculptors; one from Bendigo, one from Castlemaine, one from Daylesford, and one from Malmsbury and they all exhibited.
“I asked them if they’d like to do it again and they all said it was a lot of work for just one weekend, and I said, ‘what if we did it over five weekends?’
“That’s really how it started, and it basically grew from there.”
The annual exhibition runs each weekend until 10 December, although groups can book visits during the week.
Mr Gibson said it has been popular so far, with the carpark packed from about 11.30am each open day.
“If we get good weather, we get good crowds here,” he said.
Of the 15 sculptors who contributed to this year’s display, Mr Gibson said about 70 per cent are from Central Victoria, and the remainder from other parts of Victora and NSW.
“It’s a huge variety of sculptures, they all have a different type of work,” he said.
As well as the sculpture garden, visitors can sit on the deck for food and drinks and delight in the view of the valley.
“We see people enjoying it, so that’s also very rewarding for us,” Mr Gibson said.