DAY ONE – BOTANICAL GARDENS AND GENEALOGY
Your Fort Wayne adventure begins at the Foellinger-Freeman Botanical Conservatory, an immense glass structure influenced by turn-of-the-20th-century greenhouses. The Conservatory is home to more than 500 species of plants from three continents. The complex is divided into three themed indoor areas with a separate layout and climate in addition to outdoor and seasonal displays. An arid environment containing saguaro cacti, prickly pear trees, and jojoba shrubs, the Desert Garden is full of hundreds of species that are otherwise impossible to grow in the Midwest, while the Tropical Garden teems with diverse fruit orchards, cacao plants, and 13 palm varieties.
Within easy walking distance are the Allen County Public Library and the Genealogy Center—the second-largest genealogy center in the country. There, your group can trace family history with over 350,000 books.
DAY TWO – SWEETWATER AND DEBRAND
Spend your afternoon at Sweetwater. This innovative company with humble origins began when founder Chuck Surack designed a four-track recording studio in the back of his VW van. His company quickly flourished into the modern Sweetwater campus. It includes an instrument store, recording studios, a shipping plant, and performance spaces. Tours will pass through the professional service center. Moreover, it rehabs and improves existing instruments, auditoriums with state-of-the-art acoustic engineering, and a performance pavilion.
Satisfy your sweet tooth with a tour of DeBrand Fine Chocolates, which includes a kitchen tour and samples of their artisan-crafted chocolates. Afterward, peruse the chocolate shop or relax over gelato, a sundae, or fancy hot chocolate in the elegant, wood-paneled cafe. Despite its name, the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo is an engaging experience for all ages. Groups can ride the Sky Safari, trek through an Indonesian rainforest and admire the landscaped grounds. Conclude your day with a performance at the Embassy Theatre, which boasts grand Art Deco design elements.