From the rural setting of Louisiana to the urban environs of St. Louis, Missouri has beautiful gardens and sculpture parks that turn a casual stroll into a memorable experience.
As you enjoy the summer months, these outdoor retreats are ideal locations for spending time oudoors, which is what summer is all about.
Laumeier Sculpture Park, St. Louis - One of the Show-Me State's most well-known sculpture parks, Laumeier includes the oft-photographed Eye, which was created by Tony Tasset. The park holds 60 works of art, covers more than 100 acres and has several walking trails.
St. Louis University's Lay Center, Louisiana - Surrounded by meadows and hills, the 20-acre sculpture park features Story Woods, an area where artists have interpreted literature and art in a natural setting.
Donald J. Hall Sculpture Park, Kansas City - Located on the grounds of the iconic Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the 22-acre sculpture park has 36 sculptures, including the well-known Shuttlecocks by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen.
Powell Gardens, Kingsville - More an architecture lover's dream than a traditional sculpture park, this outdoor gem near Kansas City covers nearly 1,000 acres and boasts a handful of unique buildings, including the Meadow Pavilion and the Marjorie Powell Allen Chapel.
Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis - Like Powell Gardens, the 79-acre Missouri Botanical Garden has beautiful and interesting architecture, as well as a variety of gardens, such as the Japanese Garden and the Boxwood Garden, to explore. The 57-year-old, dome-shaped Climatron is an example of innovative design, while Tower Grove House and Linnean House are stunning representations of mid-to-late 1800s construction.
Precious Moments Chapel and Gardens, Carthage - Unique to Missouri - and the world, actually - this is the only chapel and garden devoted to artist Samuel J. Butcher's Precious Moments creations. As you stroll through the garden, enjoy the natural beauty of the Ozarks and the peace of the Avenue of Angels.
Citygarden, St. Louis - In the heart of downtown, Citygarden is an artistic playground for people of all ages. You'll find sculptures, including Igor Mitoraj's Eros Bendato, water features and summertime concerts.
Ewing and Muriel Kauffman Memorial Garden, Kansas City - The garden, named for two Kansas City philanthropists, features a variety of annuals and perennials and includes brick walkways, fountains and stone walls. It's a peaceful retreat amid the bustle of the city.
Friends' Sculpture Garden, Poplar Bluff - On the grounds of the Margaret Harwell Art Museum, the garden includes a mule sculpture by Missourian Rachel Wilson and a bright yellow guitar sculpture created by St. Louis artist and monk, Brother Mel Meyer.
Webster Groves Sculpture Park, Webster Groves - This park features the work of three artists (Catharine Magel, Ernest Trova and Carol Fleming) who have St. Louis ties. Magel's Inflorescence is an intricate, bird-shaped mosaic that's sure to catch your eye.