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Mid-winter orchid show

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By The Staff

"Escape the winter blues and immerse yourself in a tropical paradise of orchids," invites the Web site for the Mesker Park Zoo and Botanic Garden in Evansville.

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The escape is abrupt as visitors pass through a heavy wooden door from frigid air into a warm, humid jungle. Rare and beautiful orchids are tucked into spaces between animal exhibits along a walkway winding through the Amazonia enclosure. They're scheduled to be on display until March 8.

Some of the flowers are identified by scientific and common names, such as the Vuylstekeara, or Aloha Passion. All of them display intricate combinations of shapes and colors.

The zoo and garden is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week. Admission is $6.50 per adult and $5.50 per child through February, with $1 discounts Tuesdays. For more information, call (812) 435-6143.