Green Giving: Give Experience! Part 1

With holiday shopping season in full swing, I’d like for us to stop and think for a minute. Do we have to give “stuff” to celebrate the holidays? Can we give something else other than “stuff” and still make people happy? I think we can.

Starting today, I will share my holiday gift ideas that are sure to delight many and kind to the environment.

First up, giving experience. There are many ways you can give experience. For example…

Arkansas Arts Center Membership

Eddy and I have a membership to the Arkansas Arts Center, and boy, they do a fantastic job putting on exhibits and events! Our membership comes with:

  • Free admission to special paid exhibitions
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • 20% discount off Museum School tuition
  • 10% discount in the Museum Shop

Eddy and I pay extra $40 to participate in the Contemporaries program. The program offers monthly events aimed at fun, social, art education including studio visits and private collection tours. The best part of the Contemporaries program, if I may say so, is Art on Tap. Hosted by the Arkansas Arts Center Young Professionals Advisory Committee, Art on Tap seeks to introduce people from around the state to the Arts Center in a fun and relaxing environment. During Art on Tap, you can view art from the Arts Center Collection and special exhibitions, sample craft and imported beers from around the world, and listen to music by local musicians. And best of all, it’s free to members of the Contemporaries program!

Interested in giving Arkansas Arts Center membership to your special someone? Visit

Arkansas Repertory Theatre

The Rep’s production always blows me away. So, why not share the experience with someone you love?

Call (501) 378-0405 or 1-866-6-THE REP to give the gift of theatre to your special someone. You can also stop by the Box Office at 601 Main Street in downtown Little Rock to purchase gift certificates. Available in any dollar increment you choose.

For more information, visit The Rep’s website at

If your special someone prefers live performances by other groups, check out The Weekend Theater (Little Rock), Walton Arts Center (Fayetteville), and the University of Central Arkansas Reynolds Performance Hall (Conway).

Botanical Garden of the Ozarks

Wondering what to give to a gardener on your list? Look no further! Give him or her a membership to the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks (BGO).

I love BGO! Located in Fayetteville, BGO is divided into several themed gardens, including native, shade, and children’s gardens. I’ve been to many botanical gardens, but I think BGO is the only garden with a chicken coop.

A membership to BGO comes with:

  • Free admission to the Garden according to level of membership
  • Free admission at 222 other public gardens nationwide through American Horticulture Society’s reciprocal admission program
  • Invitations to Garden events
  • Discounts to classes, workshops, and events
  • Discounts at local retailers
  • One-time garden passes to share with friends

How cool is that?

In addition to its amazing gardens, BGO hosts interesting gardening workshops throughout the year. I think discounts to them alone is worth the membership.

Interested? Visit BGO website at

Don’t live in Fayetteville? Consider becoming a member of Garvan Woodland Gardens in Hot Springs! For more information, visit

So, those are some of the ideas on how to give experience instead of “stuff” this holiday season. The Green Giving series will continue tomorrow, so stay tuned!


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