Passport event to celebrate Yampa River Botanic Park |

Passport event to celebrate Yampa River Botanic Park

Musicians play as people enjoy the first-ever Passport Through the Botanic Park event in 2021. This year's event will celebrate the park's 25th anniversary with food and drink stations, and a live auction.
Yampa River Botanic Park/Courtesy photo

The Yampa River Botanic Park will host its second annual Passport Through the Botanic Park gala from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June 25.

The event will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the park with several different food and drink stations, which coordinate with different flora and fauna gardens, according to Jennifer MacNeil, the park’s executive director. 

There will also be a live auction run by Cookie Lockhart, hall of fame auctioneer, at the event beginning at 7 p.m. and an online auction, which is available through 7 p.m. Sunday, June 26.

“This is our second year doing it — we invite guests to journey through the gardens and pair learning opportunities with different plants, global cuisine and wine,” said MacNeil.

Attendees will be able to sample holopchi cabbage rolls and Czechoslovakian beef at the crevice garden. Crevice gardening, which features plants between flat stones set in soil vertically, originated in the Czech Republic.

The subalpine garden will feature Swedish meatballs, a nod to the plants’ native habitats in places like Scandinavia. A special 25th anniversary garden will display photos of the park’s progress and evolution over the years.

A beer garden will highlight Mountain Tap’s special botanic brew, featuring flavors like rosemary and wildflower honey.

If you go

What: Passport through the Botanic Park
Where: Yampa River Botanic Park, 1000 Pamela Ln.
When: 4:30-7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 25

MacNeil explained that the event, particularly the live auction, will raise money to renovate the park’s entrances and gates.

The gates “will be transformed so that they’re wider and more easily accessible, especially for those with strollers and wheelchairs,” MacNeil said. “We’re making them wider and then very artistic.”

MacNeil added that it will be particularly special to have Lockhart auctioneering for the event because of her family’s history with the land.

“The Lockhart family owned the land prior to it becoming the botanic park,” MacNeil said “It was a flat horse pasture that transformed into the botanic park we know today.” 

Attendees enjoyed live music at the Passport Through the Botanic Park event in 2021.
Courtesy of the Yampa River Botanic Park

Offerings up for bid at the auction include an Element Pedego electric bike, a trip to the big island of Hawaii and a race car driving experience. 

The online auction features a chance to experience beekeeping for a day with Outlaw Honey Apiaries and a hot air balloon ride.

There will be performances from musicians throughout the evening. 

Tickets are limited, MacNeil said, but can be accessed at

 “We’ve been working on this for a year,” MacNeil said. “A wonderful committee that has put a lot of time into this.” 

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