Hershey Children's Garden

Step inside a storybook

Big smiles come from dirty hands in Hershey Children's Garden

Activate the young explorer within your child as they search for frogs and fish, observe a honeybee hive or play within an imaginative treehouse at The Hershey Children's Garden. As your child discovers plant and animal life around them, he or she can also learn why caring for the environment is vital for everyone. The Hershey Children's Garden enables both you and your child to disconnect from technology and tune in to the sights, sounds and smells of a beautiful display garden.

Hershey Children's Garden was one of the first such gardens in the country and the first in Ohio when it opened in 1999, and still serves as a model for children's gardens around the world. With its mix of mini ecological areas, including the pond, prairie and woodland, as well as the manicured flower gardens, it is a place for guests of all ages to explore, learn and find adventure.

The Hershey Children's Garden was made possible through a generous grant from The Hershey Foundation and gifts from members of the Hershey Family. Jo Hershey Selden established The Hershey Foundation in 1986 to honor her late husband Alvin A. Hershey. Their daughter Debbie Hershey has worked closely with the Botanical Garden to create a place where children can enjoy the outdoors and have fun with plants while learning about science and the environment.

Hershey Children's Garden 

Nature-play is important for every child. Your child can become immersed in hands-on activities like the following:

  • Create mud pies at the potting bench
  • Listen to nature-inspired stories in the treehouse
  • Observe honeybees in their hive
  • Search for fish, frogs and turtles in the pond
  • Learn about veggie and herb gardens
  • Explore and play in nature's playground

Activities 2018

Each week, the activities will feature a new topic, and children will learn about everything from spring bulbs and seeds to frogs and insects:

January 16: Stewardship
January 23: Snow
January 30: Orchids
February 6: Flowers
February 13: Valentines Day
February 20: Animals
February 27: Fruits and Vegetables
March 6: Sun and Weather
March 13: Birds
March 20: Worms and Compost
March 27: Seeds
April 3/7 - 8: Spring Bulbs
April 10/14 -15: Seasons
April 17/21 - 22: Earth Day
April 24/28 - 29: Arbor Day
May 1/5 - 6: Farms
May 8/12 - 13: Frogs
May 15/19 - 20: Bugs/Insects
May 22/26 - 27: Numbers in the Garden
May 29/ June 2 - 3: Letters in the Garden


Free with Garden admission, no registration required.

Storytime in the Treehouse

Every Tuesday at 11am.

Story time is held in the Eleanor Squire Library in the case of inclement weather.


Open March 31--October 31 during Botanical Garden hours*

*closes at sunset on Wednesdays when the Botanical Garden is open until 9pm

The Children’s Garden is often staffed by an employee and/or volunteer, but adults are responsible to actively supervise children in their care.

 Visit the Garden today and experience first-hand our rich and vibrant kids activities!