Friday Excursion: Wright Treasures in Rockford and Belvidere
Friday, May 17
8 am to 5 pm
Starts from the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio, Oak Park
$150 FLWPT member; $165 non-member - SOLD OUT
Includes lunch at Anderson Japanese Gardens and luxury motorcoach transportation.
Space is limited.
Courtesy of Anderson Japanese Gardens.
Here's your chance to enjoy an exclusive private tour of Frank Lloyd Wright's Kenneth and Phyllis Laurent House in Rockford, Illinois, weeks before it opens to the public for the first time. Built for Kenneth E. Laurent in 1949 on his return from service in World War II, this Usonian is Wright's only wheel-chair accessible design. This single story solar hemicycle house combines segments of circles interlocking with rectangular spaces. It still holds much of the built-in and free-standing furniture that Wright designed for it.
Mr. Laurent and his family were the only residents of the house; the Laurent House Foundation acquired it at auction in late 2011 when Mr. & Mrs. Laurent prepared to move to a care facility. They passed away in 2012. The home received National Historic Landmark status in September 2012.
Courtesy of Rockford Area Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Following this very special tour, we will visit nearby Anderson Japanese Gardens for lunch and a tour of one of the Midwest's most acclaimed Japanese gardens. Garden construction began in 1978 at the behest of land owner John Anderson. Designer Hoichi Kurisu, who designed and constructed the Portland Japanese Garden in Oregon and studied under one of the premier garden designers in Japan, returns to Rockford every year to continue his work.
After this peaceful respite, we will travel to Belvidere, Illinois, to visit the historic 1847 cemetery and view Frank Lloyd Wright's Pettit Memorial Chapel, built in 1907.The chapel served as a gathering place for services at a time when funeral homes were not widely available. The building's architectural features include a cruciform plan, horizontal wood trim, a large central brick fireplace, and art glass windows. The chapel was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978 and was restored in 1981.