Garden initiative

The Garden & Endowment Initiative

A Gift That Grows

Launching in 2022 with anticipated groundbreaking in 2024, the History Center will create learning gardens on our campus. These spectacular new additions to the museum space will provide gardens that reflect on the history of local landscape design from traditional to modern eras.

The Lake Forest-Lake Bluff contribution to landscape design and preservation is an important story for our community to celebrate and share with the broader world. The work of contributors from the designers to the home owners, the garden clubs, and the workers who built and maintained these beauties should not be relegated to books and photos.


“A society grows great when people plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.”

Garden initiative

Click the image above to view our promotional video!

The History Center of Lake Forest-Lake Bluff is a wonderful place to gather and celebrate the fascinating stories of our community. These walkable learning gardens will expand the ability for our community to come together and share something that celebrates the contributions we have made to American history.

We hope you will help us bring this story alive for many generations to come. 

We are on a mission to create learning gardens that will tell the story of these influential design styles and highlight different gardens of significance, and the designers who brought them to life. We plan to transform our grounds into an outdoor, living museum that will be accessible to all to learn, connect and reflect. In honor of the History Center’s 50th anniversary, the museum is also establishing a supporting endowment to ensure that our learning gardens, treasured stories, artifacts, and programs will exist for future generations to experience. There are many ways to help grow this garden: through sponsorship, donation of dollars and artifacts, and expertise. Please help us build this unique and valuable learning resource!

With your support, we will celebrate history indoors and out!

View the brochure

Browse naming opportunities

Access the pledge form

Garden Initiative

Honor a Loved One with a Garden Naming Opportunity


There are several ways to honor a loved one with special name recognition throughout the gardens. To learn more, please contact Lisa Frey, Director of Development at to discuss this unique opportunity.


Support the Garden Endowment


Help us celebrate history, indoors and out!

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