Virginia Dare’s 430th Birthday (2017)

Aug 18 2017, 9:00 AM TO 2:00 PM

In honor of the 430th birthday of the first English child born in the Virginia Dare Statue
new world on August 18, 1587, regular admission to The Elizabethan Gardens is reduced. Special celebratory general admission: $4.30(+ NC Admission Tax) Youth and children are free all day. For more information, call 252-473-3234.

Along with activities for the children and special programs we will be offering for the first time ever a photo op board for visitors to snap photos of their time spent on the Outer Banks. There will also be a giant birthday card to sign which will later be posted on our Facebook page so that visitors can show off their signature. Additionally, all of the children will be commissioned as “Roanoke Explorers” and will be given a personalized card to remember the day. Parents will also receive a special free souvenir.

Dare-inspired activities for August 18. The following events are scheduled in and around The Gardens for August 18:

9:00am Virginia Dare Birthday Plant Clearance, 30% off Plant Sale (9:00am-1:00pm)

9:00-10:00am     Ask Our Gardner – on staff consultant to answer garden questions

10:00am     Children’s Program – Backyard Birds

10:45am     Children’s Program – Butterflies!

12:00pm-1:00pm     We will have available a Southern Picnic Lunch of fried chicken, assorted breads, tossed salad, potato salad and green beans for $9 per person (non-members) $8 (members). Beverages are soda, water and tea. Tickets available to the first 100 guests. Note: lunch price does not include $4.30 adult admission. (youth and children are free admission all day)

VA Dare Lunch

1:00pm     Ice Cream and Birthday Cake

For more information on the day’s activities, call The Gardens 252-473-3234 or visit


430 years ago Roanoke Island witnessed the birth of the very first child of English speaking parents. Her mother was Eleanor Dare who was the wife of Ananias Dare an assistant Governor for the new colony. Eleanor was also the daughter of John White who was the Governor appointed by Queen Elizabeth. The colony landed on July 22, 1587 to find an abandoned fort and were left on Roanoke Island to fend for themselves by the captain of their transport ship.   John White returned to England a week later. His journals and watercolor paintings are the primary sources for what is known about his Granddaughter Virginia as well as a record of the pristine islands. It is said that she was named ‘Virginia’ to honor the naming of the country by the explorers several years earlier. John White returned to the area on her third birthday in 1590 only to find virtually no trace of the colony. Virginia’s fate, as well as all of the 1587 colonists, are lost to history.

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The Elizabethan Gardens is located adjacent to The Lost Colony's Waterside Theatre and Fort Raleigh National Historic Park on Roanoke Island nestled near North Carolina's Outer Banks. The gardens are open year-round, seven days a week except certain holidays.

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