Happy 100th, Hakone Gardens

Wish the peaceful Saratoga spot a joyous centennial.

LEAF, PETAL, HISTORY, HAPPINESS: Every nature lover would stay, unequivocally and emphatically, that all of the outdoors is their "favorite," when pressed to name a favorite place. And we believe them, and believe ourselves, when we say such a thing. After all, the eco system and the bird world and the sunlight and air and water and greenery is so interwoven that to single out anything feels antithetical to the spirit of nature's eternal oneness. But, all that said, we all have our go-to destinations when we need to look upon a lovely tree, breathe a little oxygen, and reset our hearts. Perhaps it is a national park or the park down the street, or perhaps it is a formal and elegant garden with a long, local history. Look to Hakone Estate and Gardens in Saratoga. It is coming up on its first century, and a centennial gala on Sunday, Sept. 27 will celebrate both its story and those supporters who've spent many happy afternoons wandering its paths and pausing on its bridges and shaking off the minor woes of daily life for an hour or two. Hakone is, in fact, "one of the oldest Japanese estate, retreat, and gardens in the Western Hemisphere," so it has been a valued go-to spot for generations of history-minded, plant-loving, peace-seeking supporters. Many of which will be at the...

CENTENNIAL GALA: The gardens, which typically close at the end of the day, will stay open into the night, making for "a rare opportunity" to enjoy the setting by starlight. Koto music, traditional dance, sake, and more highlights attuned to the tale of the garden, and all it represents, are on the evening's roster. A ticket is two hundred dollars, and it helps out the Hakone Foundation, which "seeks to enhance the Hakone Estate" as well as "preserve its Japanese authenticity for future generations, promote a deeper understanding of Asian Cultures, and to serve as a global forum for art, music, culture, and ideas." Is the Hakone an important part of your nature-loving, culture-connected world? Show your support and enjoy the bridge-beautiful, shrub-spectacular setting by night. 

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