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The Eric Carle Museum
of Picture Book Art
  • 125 West Bay Road
  • Amherst, MA 01002

Hours

  • Tue- Friday10 am - 4 pm
  • Saturday 10am – 5pm
  • Sunday 12 pm - 5 pm

 

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News

Bobbie's Meadow Press Release

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art to Dedicate and Open Bobbie's Meadow  

Amherst, MA (May 24, 2018)--On Saturday, June 23, at 10:00 am, Museum co-founder Eric Carle will cut the ribbon and invite the public into Bobbie's Meadow, a new multi-use space located in the Museum's beloved apple orchard. The meadow is a tribute to Carle's late wife, Museum co-founder Barbara ("Bobbie") Carle, and marks an exciting new era for The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.

Plans for Opening Day
The ribbon cutting ceremony will kick off Bobbie's Meadow: A Celebration and Dedication, a day that includes special storytimes, art and nature explorations, and special guests. Naturalist Ted Watt will lead guests on a search for bugs, birds, and animals that make meadows their habitat. Large illustrated bugs from the upcoming book What's Your Favorite Bug? by Eric Carle and Friends (Henry Holt Books for Young Readers) will be hidden throughout the apple orchard for a scavenger hunt. Award-winning artist Brendan Wenzel will read his new book Hello Hello and introduce readers to animals who share common traits. The Center Dance Studio will perform a storytime and narrative dance inspired by Carle's picture book, Little Cloud.  Guests can also join local artists creating art in Bobbie's Meadow, and play with large blocks, musical instruments, and a "little outdoor library" modeled after the Museum.

Inside the Museum, The Art of Eric Carle: Seasons exhibition offers rarely seen natural landscapes from Carle's over-50 year career as well as a special case featuring artwork he created for Bobbie on special occasions, such as a Christmas portrait of their dog Tock and a Valentine with a cat.

"Our orchard is being reimagined as a vital extension of the Museum," says Alexandra Kennedy, executive director. "We're connecting art, nature, and people in a new setting to inspire creativity and expand our programming. We are also creating an important new wildlife habitat and giving guests of all abilities access to it." Throughout the season there will be a special Bobbie's Meadow Summer Programming Series that will include outdoor yoga for kids, creative movement, Reading Buddies with Bright Spot Therapy Dogs, and outdoor storytimes.

How Bobbie's Meadow Came to Be
When Bobbie Carle passed away on September 7, 2015, The Carle's Board of Trustees immediately began efforts to create a space in her name, spearheading a fundraising campaign. More than 100 donors generously contributed to its construction.

"Bobbie was our first board chair, and it was her steady leadership, gentle guidance, and nurturing personality that set the stage for all of us," says Chairman of the Board Christopher B. Milne. "The concept for a meadow felt right. Bobbie was an educator and an environmentalist, and she was passionate about making The Carle a place for community members to enjoy art and books. Bobbie's Meadow will serve as such an exciting and beautiful way to honor her."

A Design All About Accessibility and Environmentalism
Bobbie's Meadow was designed by Mantle Landscape Architecture of Berkeley, California and Klopfer Martin Design Group of Boston and built by Wright Builders, Inc. of Northampton. It creates opportunities for guests to walk, play, read, and draw among the hundred-year-old apple trees in the Museum's orchard. Designed as an outdoor resource for the entire community (human and animal), the meadow features a wheelchair- and stroller-accessible walking path, walls with outdoor seating, and a small outdoor library--all ringed by a meadow planted with native wildflowers. New shrubs along West Bay Road will include a hidden mesh fence for extra safety.

Landscape Architect Ramsey Silberberg of Mantle Landscape Architecture states, "My hope is that everyone who walks through Bobbie's Meadow will feel welcomed, embraced, and inspired to discover--the way one felt in Bobbie's presence. The orchard has been an important setting for The Carle since day one and we wanted to create "a room" within it that would extend the Museum's programming and integrate it with the outside. I am excited to see the many ways the team at The Carle will use it to engage their visitors. The best part of designing the space is yet to come--watching it come to life!"

With Bobbie's Meadow, The Carle is joining its neighbors Hampshire College and the Hitchcock Center for the Environment in an effort to provide more habitats for wildlife in South Amherst. Wildflower meadows provide critical sustenance for scores of species--from all important pollinators like bees and butterflies to songbirds and foxes. The new meadow is seeded with 21 native perennials. As these grow in coming seasons, they will help provide food and protection for the meadow's wildlife inhabitants.  

Bobbie's Meadow reflects the values of its namesake Barbara Carle. "I think Bobbie would be honored by the meadow being created in her memory," says Eric Carle. "She loved flowers and nature, and she loved the Museum which was a dream she and I had shared.  Bobbie was devoted to its development and played a central role in the early days of the Museum's life. The tiny seed she planted has grown and will continue to grow here."

About the Museum
The mission of The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, a non-profit organization in Amherst, MA, is to inspire a love of art and reading through picture books. A leading advocate in its field, The Carle collects, preserves, presents, and celebrates picture books and picture-book illustrations from around the world. In addition to underscoring the cultural, historical, and artistic significance of picture books and their art form, The Carle offers educational programs that provide a foundation for arts integration and literacy.

Eric Carle and his wife, the late Barbara Carle, co-founded the Museum in November 2002. Carle is the renowned author and illustrator of more than 70 books, including the 1969 classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Since opening, the 43,000-square foot facility has served more than 750,000 visitors, including 50,000 schoolchildren.

The Carle houses more than 11,000 objects, including 7,300 permanent collection illustrations. The Carle has three art galleries, an art studio, a theater, picture book and scholarly libraries, and educational programs for families, scholars, educators, and schoolchildren. Educational offerings include professional training for educators around the country and Master's degree programs in children's literature with Simmons College. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday 10 am to 4 pm, Saturday 10 am to 5 pm, and Sunday 12 pm to 5 pm. Open Mondays in July and August and during MA school vacation weeks. Admission is $9 for adults, $6 for children under 18, and $22.50 for a family of four. For further information and directions, call (413) 559-6300 or visit the Museum's website at
www.carlemuseum.org

IMAGES ARE AVAILABLE FOR REPRODUCTION. For additional press information and/or images, please contact Sandy Soderberg, Marketing Manager (413) 559-6315/
sandys@carlemuseum.org

Bobbie's Meadow Schedule
Saturday, June 23
 

10:00 - 11:00 am Bobbie's Meadow Dedication and Ribbon-cutting Ceremony
Join Eric Carle and The Carle staff for the official ribbon cutting ceremony for our new outdoor space, Bobbie's Meadow. Bobbie's Meadow is named in memory of the late Barbara "Bobbie" Carle-Museum co-founder, founding board chair, and Eric Carle's dear wife. We welcome all to attend this special event with music from The Expandable Brass Band.

11:00 am - 12:00 pm Meet Some Meadow Animal Friends (Art Studio)
Join Ted Watt, Naturalist from the Hitchcock Center for the Environment, to meet some animals up close that might be found in Bobbie's Meadow.  Ted will share some of the fascinating details of their lives.  And those who want to will be able to hold or touch some insects and other creatures! Program for ages 4 and up. Space is limited. Sign up in the Art Studio!

11:30 am - 12:30 pm  Little Cloud  Storytime and Creative Movement with The Center Dance Studio (Bobbie's Meadow)  Join The Center Dance Studio for creative movement and narrative dance inspired by Eric Carle's book, Little Cloud. Bring your imagination and your dancing feet! Recommended for children ages 3 and up. Caregiver participation welcome.

12:00 - 2:00 pm Art in Bobbie's Meadow Drop-in and explore art outdoors and alongside local artists. All materials will be provided, find a sunny spot and sketch away!

1:00 - 2:00 pm Exploring in Bobbie's Meadow
Join Ted Watt, Naturalist from the Hitchcock Center for the Environment, to see what creatures we might discover in Bobbie's Meadow! We will have insect nets and observation boxes and cages to house our catches temporarily before we let them go. We'll observe the animals and learn about their lives. Suggested for ages 4 and up.

2:00 - 2:30 pm Special Storytime with Brendan Wenzel (Bobbie's Meadow)
In Hello Hello, Caldecott Honor-winner Brendan Wenzel introduces readers to a chain of animals linked together by common traits. From simple colors and shapes to more complex and abstract associations, each unexpected encounter celebrates the magnificent diversity of our world-and ultimately paints a story of connection. Wenzel's joyous, rhythmic text and exuberant art encourage readers to delight in nature's infinite differences and to look for-and marvel at-its gorgeous similarities.
 
IMAGES ARE AVAILABLE FOR REPRODUCTION For additional press information and/or images, please contact Sandy Soderberg, Marketing Manager 413-559-6315

Eric Carle, Illustration for The Mountain That Loved a Bird by Alice McLerran [Simon & Schuster]. Collection of Eric and Barbara Carle. © 1985 Eric Carle.
 

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