Edison & Ford Winter Estates Blog - Edison & Ford Winter Estates Blog

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Blog

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Blog

11th Annual Children’s Tree Trail

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 14, 2016

Sixty area schools have participated in this year’s Children’s Tree Trail holiday event. The students and teachers of these schools have created recycled, weather-resistant ornaments to match this year’s theme of birds! This exhibit is free to the public.

tree trailThe schools include: Allen Park Elementary School (Susan Fansler), Alva School (Nicole Bizjak), Bayshore Elementary School (James Lefko), Caloosa Elementary (Heidi Fizer), Cape Coral Elementary (Connie Willis), Challenger Middle School ( Sandy Rayannic), Cypress Lake Middle School (Joy Williams), Diplomat Middle School (Oliver Dominquez), East Lee County High School (Megan LoPresti), Edgewood Academy (Kristin Boyle), Edison Ford Winter Estates Homeschool (Deborah Bowers), Edison Park Creative and Expressive Arts School (Karen Flanders), Faith First Homeschool Group (Karen Ballina), Fort Myers High School (Michelle Irvine), G. Weaver Hipps, Franklin Park Elementary School (Kristen Carter), Gulf Elementary School (Jodie Holland & Liz Olancin), Gulf Middle (Stacy Peres), Hancock Creek Elementary (Danielle Hopkins), Harns Marsh Elementary (Ginjer Fassold), Harns Marsh Middle School (Kirston Bero), Heights Elementary (Alexis Pyszka), Island Coast High School (Linda Meyer), James Stephens International Academy (Brianne Pegg, Angelina Stephens), Lee Virtual School (Ken McNew), Lehigh Acres Middle School (Trudy Doten), Lehigh Acres Middle School AVID Department (Debbie Prashad), Lehigh Elementary School (Joni Centnet), Lehigh Senior High School (Betsy Haskins), Littleton Elementary School (Scott Whipple), Maintenance Dept. Lee County School District/North Fort Myers Academy for the Arts (Shari Crocker), Manatee Elementary (Andrea Luizzi), Mariner High School (Jennifer Riley), Mirror
Lakes Elementary School (Angela Johnson), North Fort Myers Academy for the Arts (Theresa West-Taylo), Orange River Elementary (Diana Taveras), Paul Laurence Dunbar Middle School (Kellen Beck Mills), Pelican Elementary (Ann Sealey), Ray V. Pottorf Elementary School (Sharon Tomasko), Rayma C. Page Elementary (Robert Sherry), Riverdale High School (Linda Addeo), San Carlos Park Elementary School (Michele Sipos), Skyline Elementary School (Jeffrey Nelson), South Fort Myers High School (Jeanne Dozier), Spring Creek Elementary (Mary Etta Rokusek), St. Andrew Catholic
School (Diana Villadolid), St. Francis Xavier Catholic School (Carmen Lombardo/Vanessa), Sunshine Elementary (Michelle Roman), The Sanibel School (Tylor Stewart), Three Oaks Middle School (Laura Campbell), Tice Elementary (Jill Kellser), Tortuga Preserve Elementary School (Christina Sterrett), Trafalgar Elementary School (Helen Garcia-Valdez), Treeline Elementary (Nicole Batista), Topic Isles Elementary (Robert Hertzog), Two Happy Hands Signing Academy (Lesley Reed-Rodgers), Varsity Lakes Middle School (Marjorie Resler), Veterans Park Academy for the Arts (Jill Antonucci).

Edison Ford School Break Camp – Grades 1st – 8th

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 13, 2016

● December 27 – 30, Animation (Grades 1st – 3rd); Introduction to 3D Design and CAD (Grades 4th – 8th), 9:00 a.m. – 3:45 p.m.

isaiah 3D printing campStudents can join the Wild Wizard for an exciting week of exploration and learning at Edison Ford.

Cost: Edison Ford Members $160; non-members $200. For more information or to register call Leeanne Criswell, Edison Ford Program Registrar, at 239-334-7419 or email Leeanne at lcriswell@edisonfordwinterestates.org.

Edison Ford Members—Early Registration for Edison Ford Inventors Summer Camp will begin in January 2017

Edison Ford Volunteer Meeting and Lecture

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 11, 2016

● December 13, 10:00 a.m. – Recreating Henry Ford’s 1896 Quadricycle – Lecture Hall in South Florida Water Management Building

Join Automotive Curator, James Moss, as he speaks about building a replica of
Henry Ford’s first vehicle, the Quadricycle. A brief video detailing the process will also
be shared. At the end of the meeting, volunteers will be able to view the progress made
on the Quadricycle replica!

Volunteer Meetings are open to current and potential volunteers. For more
information on how to become a volunteer, contact Holly Shaffer or Bobby Feldman,
Volunteer Coordinators at 239-334-7419, or download the application here.

Ford on Quadricycle


Creative Movement Classes with Brittany Robbins – Ages Two – Six

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 10, 2016

● Classes will be held the second Monday of each month thru February on the Riverside Property, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

yoga cartoonClasses will offer young children an opportunity to explore creative expression and movement through song, dance, and basic yoga postures. Movement can help children to process and express their emotions and have fun doing so! Each class offers children the chance to think creatively, work collaboratively, and develop their sense of personal and shared space. Brittany Robbins is a certified yoga instructor (RYT-200) and grew up in her family’s dance studio where she first found her love of expressive movement. Cost: Edison Ford Members $5 (one adult; one child); non-members $10 (one adult; one child). Each additional child $5.Registration is required. For more information or to register contact Leeanne Criswell, Edison Ford Program Registrar at  lcriswell@edisonfordwinterestates.org or 239-334-7419.

Edison Ford Holiday Nights Special Events

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 9, 2016

Live Holiday Music – November 25, December 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17, 22, 23
Enjoy live period holiday music performed by a variety of local groups. From carolers to the Fort Myers Mastersingers, an eclectic blend of musicians and singers will perform throughout the grounds.
Cartooning with Doug MacGregor – “Santa’s Workshop” in the Edison Caretaker’s House; November 25, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., December 3, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., December 10, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Children of all ages will enjoy engaging with Santa as he introduces them to the wonderful world of cartooning.
● Children’s Holiday Crafts – “Santa’s Workshop” in the Edison Caretaker’s House; Select Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturday evenings, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. (See Calendar of Events)

Watch children delight in the spirit of the season as they create a truly unique holiday ornament and take home a piece of Edison Ford history!

Coconut Painting Class – “Santa’s Workshop” in the Edison Caretaker’s House; December 2, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Create a special postcard sure to warm the heart of a loved one or a treasure to decorate your own home. Adults and children of all ages will enjoy this fun Floridian craft. Cost: Advance Registration: Edison Ford Members $5; non-members $10. Day of: $10 for all participants. Painted coconuts can be mailed directly from the Edison Ford
Museum Store for an additional $10. To register call Leeanne Criswell, Edison Ford Program Registrar, at 239-334-7419 or lcriswell@edisonfordwinterestates.org.

Holiday Tea with Mr. & Mrs. Edison and Mrs. Ford – December 14 – 4:30 p.m.
jan-and-jamie-bromeliad-christmas-treeJoin Mr. & Mrs. Edison and Mrs. Ford for a special Holiday Tea. Mr. & Mrs. Edison will take you on a tour of their seasonally decorated home, Seminole Lodge. Mrs. Ford will also welcome guests and lead a tour of her neighboring home, The Mangoes. Celebrate the holidays with the Edisons and learn about their favorite holiday traditions; enjoy tea, lemonade and cookies; and afterwards stroll the beautifully decorated homes and
gardens of the Edison and Ford families. claraCost: Edison Ford Members $15; non-members $25 (includes general admission to Edison Ford Holiday Nights, Lab and Museum). Space is limited so registration is required. For more information or to register contact Leeanne Criswell, Edison Ford Program Registrar, at 239-334-7419 or

Breakfast with Santa and the Edison Ford “Wild” Wizards – December 17 – Two Seatings: 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.
child-with-santaTake a break from the holiday bustle and spend the morning with your children at the beautiful Edison & Ford Winter Estates. Enjoy a unique holiday science show starring Santa and his Wild Wizard Elves, a healthy holiday breakfast, photo opportunities with Santa, and time to stroll the beautifully decorated homes and gardens of the Edison and Ford families. Reservations are required. Cost: Edison Ford Members $22; non-members $25, includes general admission to the site and breakfast with Santa for one adult and one child. Additional children, $15 each. For more information or to make reservations
contact Leeanne Criswell, Edison Ford Program Registrar, at 239-334-7419 or

Edison Ford Homeschool Programs 2016 – 2017

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 8, 2016

Science & Engineering Series – Morning & Afternoon Classes

Pearce roboticsThe Edison Ford Homeschool Science & Engineering Series will present students with subjects that challenge the mind and encourage collaboration and  innovation. Students will learn to think like Thomas Edison and Henry Ford as they explore and solve a variety of hands-on activities and learn the key concepts and strategies of science and engineering.
Each session follows the Next Generation Florida Sunshine State Standards (Common Core).

● December 9 – Make Anything: 3D Design and Printing, Grades 1st – 3rd, 10:00 a.m. – Noon; Grades 4th – 6th, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Join this class to learn how to use computer-aided design (CAD) software and see your creations come to life while watching a 3D printer in action!

Graphic Art & Design Series – Afternoon Classes

homeschool-2016-brysonThe creative field of graphic art & design offers an abundance of career opportunities in the commercial art world today. Students will learn some commonly used tricks-of-the-trade as we focus on a different area of design each month in our innovative digital design series. Students will be inspired by some of the greatest innovators of all time, Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. Each session follows the Next Generation Florida Sunshine State Standards (Common Core).

● December 14 – Printmaking Design, Grades 3rd – 10th, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. (Graphic Art & Design classes will be held at the Edison Ford Shoppe at Bell Tower Shops)
Explore the world of printmaking through fun, creative projects using solar printing and printing with nature and stencils. Students will design their own wrapping paper and greeting cards just in time for the holidays!

To register email Leeanne Criswell at lcriswell@edisonfordwinterestates.org or call 239-334-7419. Cost per class: Edison Ford Members $15 (one adult; one child); non-members $25 (one adult; one child). Each additional child is $15. Full payment is required at the time of registration and no refunds are possible due to material costs.

NEW for Holiday Nights

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 8, 2016

Experimentation, inventive displays, historical tradition, electric lights and music have been part of the annual holiday event at Edison Ford for the past 41 years. This year, throughout December there will be a NEW nighttime feature for Holiday Nights with the waltzing-waters-picinstallation of a Waltzing Waters display at the Ford river lawn. Waltzing Waters has been a long tradition in the area since it opened as Waltzing Waters Aquarama in 1971. Over the years, the waltzing waters were also staged at The Shell Factory and finally closed to focus its attention on construction and installations throughout the world at sites like Disney Land … and now at Edison Ford.

Waltzing Waters is a dancing fountain-set-to-music show invented by Otto Przystawik in Germany in the 1920’s. In 1965 Otto’s son, Gunter, moved to Florida and started making his own, improved “Waltzing Waters: fountain installations in Cape Coral initially and then all over the world. Waltzing Waters at Edison Ford Holiday Nights is included with general admission and is FREE to Edison Ford Members.


“Ask the Curator” – Wednesdays – 11:30 a.m.

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 7, 2016
  • ask-the-curator-dec-2016December 7 – Who Invented Electric Christmas Lights? Learn about the history of
    Christmas lights with Curatorial Registrar, Matt Andres.
  • December 14 – Home for the Holidays. Explore some of the Edison and Ford
    holiday traditions with Curator, Brent Newman.
  • December 21 – Holiday Wrap-Up! Discover some of the earliest styles and patterns of
    Christmas gift wrap with Vice President of Interpretation, Mike Cosden.
  • December 28 – What is a Model TT Ford? Learn about the Model TT Ford with Automotive Curator, James Moss.

Cost: Edison Ford Members FREE; non-members included with admission.


Hypertufa Class at Edison Ford

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 1, 2016

December 3 AND December 10 – 10:00 a.m. (two-part class)

hypertufa-orb-classUsing Hypertufa, a mixture of Portland cement, peat moss, vermiculite, perlite, and water, sculpt up to two orbs that you can hang or place in a pot. By attaching tillandsia (air plants), you will create a one-of-a-kind miniature living garden sculpture or garden ornament. Jim Hopton, retired art teacher, and inventor of the Edison Orb will instruct the two-part class in the Edison Greenhouse. Jim will also demonstrate various uses of Hypertufa in the garden.

This is a two-part class with a week in between for proper drying time and artistically personalizing your orb. You will need to bring rubber kitchen gloves, and we will provide the remaining supplies. Buy one air plant and get another free (same value).

Cost: Edison Ford Members $40; non-members $45. To register contact to Leeanne Criswell, Edison Ford Program Registrar at 239-334-7419 or lcriswell@edisonfordwinterestates.org. This class is limited to 10 participants.

Edison Ford Holiday Nights Calendar of Events

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On November 30, 2016