While it cannot convey all the excitement of the Convention, the Convention Book is very useful before, during, and after the Convention. This is the AIS 2017 Convention Book (PDF) for your use and reference. Do you have some ways you use/will use this? We would love to hear them! Whether you were able to attend or not, please enjoy!
Thank you again to Judy Keisling for preparing the book and for keeping our contributions on track. She is amazing!
The weather was delightful for the tours. Here are some photos of the Convention guests and guest irises at the Iowa Arboretum, one of three gardens visited on Friday. Click on a photo to see a larger version and again … Continue reading →
The 2017 guest iris are getting ready. Many TBs and MTBs with some IBs and BBs and even an AB. This view is Monday afternoon at one of the Messer Garden beds, one of five beds there. Click on the photo to see a larger version.
Take advantage of a special opportunity to “dine-a-round” downtown Des Moines’ award-winning and innovative food scene. The convention committee has arranged for group reservations at three downtown restaurants at 6 p.m. on Friday, May 26. Click on the names to visit each restaurant’s website and peruse the dinner menu.
Django is a comfortable, family-friendly brasserie offering everything you love about French cuisine without the attitude and featuring seasonal ingredients. It’s been a mainstay of the downtown dining scene for many years.
Bubba is a newcomer to the downtown dining scene as of last summer, specializing in Southern favorites and classic cocktails with a recently appointed new chef. Bonus: the bar stocks a large array of whiskies!
Vivian’s is billed as a “new modern diner” and located in the historic Hotel Kirkwood. Modern interiors have an upscale twist and the menu offers contemporary, but hearty revivals of old diner favorites.
Here’s what you need to know to participate:
Ready for dinner? Sign-up for reservation spots when you check in at the convention registration desk on the third floor of the Downtown Marriott Hotel. The sign-up will be next to the bus sign-up sheets!
Reservation space first come, first serve. The convention committee must turn in final commitments to the restaurants by close of day on Wednesday.
Diners are responsible for their own tab. The convention committee has simply made the group arrangements as a courtesy to convention attendees as they plan for a free evening.
All three restaurants are short walks from the convention hotel. For those who want to walk, a docent/leader will guide groups to the restaurants and depart the hotel at 5:45 p.m. Limited street parking is available at each restaurant. Taxis or rideshare services (Uber) are also available.
The Dine-A-Round is a great way to meet new people, experience great local cuisine while someone else takes care of the reservation!
The 2017 convention will feature a live auction of selected convention guests on Saturday afternoon starting at 1 p.m. in the Hall of Cities Room on the third floor of the Des Moines Downtown Marriott. The auction will feature three lots: medians, tall bearded and beardless. Each lot will last one hour and feature 40-50 varieties.
Here’s what you need to know to participate:
A catalog of auction irises will be posted on the convention website the week prior to convention.
Your registration number printed on your convention badge serves as your bidder number.
All sales are final and cash, check or credit will be accepted at checkout. All tabs must be finalized at the conclusion of the auction.
We just had our first guest irises bloom! They are definitely starting to think about the Convention. First up in the Messer garden was ‘Wild Whispers’ by Carol Coleman with color visible April 5th and first blooms opened on the … Continue reading →
In addition to Saturday’s Symposium (something new this year!), there are many programs by the Sections and Cooperating Societies. Here is the most recent list of speakers and topics we have. You can also find it on the Schedule page where there will be a link to newer versions as they become available.
The Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden welcomes convention attendees for a spring garden party in the DuPont Room and on the Bankers Trust Veranda overlooking the gardens. Guests may browse the gardens, mingle and enjoy a welcome reception menu of … Continue reading →
One of the features of the 2017 AIS Convention is a Saturday morning Symposium featuring three great speakers. Come to hear Tony Hall of the Royal Botanical Garden, Kew on The Juno Iris Species, Dawn Boyer the immediate past RVP of Region 17 with Artistic Iris Arrangements, and Cathy Egerer the president of HIPS on Agnes Whiting and the Journey to Blue Rhythm. Learn more about the 2017 Symposium Program speakers (PDF). Note that Dawn Boyer’s presentation qualifies for AIS Judges Training credit; but, is open to all.
Did you know that you can click on a photo to see it and then click on it again to see a larger version? Try it with the Iris cycloglossa photo!
The Messer Garden is in an urban setting in small town Iowa. Wayne and Pam live in Huxley, in Story County, just south of Ames. The five guest bearded iris beds begin along the driveway, drift along the south edge of the yard, wrap around the house and create a border for the cherry orchard (in progress). In addition to 242 bearded guests, you will find over 100 additional bearded irises and a sprinkling of Siberians.