Online raffle of 2020 Roush Stage 3 Mustang to raise funds
DEARBORN — Fair Lane: Home of Clara and Henry Ford announces the reopening of its gardens and grounds to visitors.
While Fair Lane’s residence and powerhouse remain closed for restoration, the 17 acres of gardens and grounds have reopened to the public, free of charge, seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Within the landscape is a formal rose garden with over 300 roses complete with a historic iron gate, fountain and copper roofed Tea House. There is also an English-style perennial garden known as the Blue Garden and a Tribute Garden with numerous colorful annuals and perennial plants, plus there are extensive woodland trails that continue onto the University of Michigan-Dearborn Environmental Study Area, formerly part of the estate grounds.
Visitors may spend as little as half an hour enjoying the gardens surrounding the residence or spend hours leisurely exploring the Great Meadow and woodland trails. The historic gardens were designed primarily by noted landscape architect Jens Jensen. Other acclaimed landscape designers such as Ellen Biddle Shipman and Herbert Kellaway also influenced the grounds.
To ensure the safety of visitors and staff, new policies have been established. All guests must observe safe social distancing and wear masks or face coverings when a safe distance cannot be maintained. All visitors must remain at least 6 feet from all Fair Lane staff.
New directional signs indicate one-way walking paths. Maps are available at the information kiosk in the parking lot and at the Potting Shed.
All buildings remain closed, no restrooms are available and dogs are not allowed. While picnicking is welcome, no grilling, alcohol or smoking is permitted and gatherings of more than six people require approval and advance registration. Go to www.henryfordfairlane.org for more information.
To raise money to support the continued restoration of the estate, Fair Lane has will host an online raffle, with the winner receiving a 2020 Roush Stage 3 Mustang. Tickets for the Saddle Up Mustang Raffle are $10 each and are available at www.mustangforfairlane.com. The winning ticket will be drawn at Fair Lane on Oct. 1.
The 1-of-1 Mustang includes a number of unique features including carbon fiber mirror caps and manual shifter ball, serial dash badge 1-of-1, specially branded seats and custom lit door sills and the personal signatures of Edsel B. Ford II and Jack Roush Sr..
“Like most non-profit organizations, this year we needed to find a new and different way to raise funds,” Fair Lane President and CEO Bob Bury said. “For just $10, you can help support our work — and get a chance to get back out on the open road in this amazing vehicle.
“It was here at Fair Lane that two ordinary people came together to make an extraordinary impact across America and beyond. Support from the raffle will help ensure their legacy continues to inspire others to follow their dreams and make their impact on the world.”
About Fair Lane
The Fords built the 31,000-square-foot Fair Lane as their dream home on 1,300 acres, just a few miles from where they both were born. At a time when Henry was skyrocketing to global fame after the success of Ford Motor Co. and the Model T, Fair Lane was their sanctuary.
The home, one of the first historic sites to be designated a National Historic Landmark, has an eclectic mix of English castle and prairie style, mixing European grandeur and Midwestern charm. The estate along the Rouge River included a hydro-electric powerhouse and dam, a greenhouse, a working farm built to scale for their grandchildren, an indoor pool, skating house, staff cottages, bowling alley, and a pony barn, as well as a private garage and laboratory for Henry. Most of the structures remain in place today, restoration is underway and all buildings remain closed to the public.
After the deaths of Henry and Clara, in 1947 and 1950, respectively, Ford Motor Co. purchased the estate to use for offices and corporate functions. In 1957, Henry Ford II announced the gift of Fair Lane and its farmlands to develop the campus of the University of Michigan-Dearborn. In 2014, the university transferred ownership of the estate to a newly established 501(c)(3) entity, Henry Ford Estate Inc.
Today, Fair Lane is an independent non-profit organization that relies on philanthropic support from a wide range of donors including foundations, corporations and individuals.
For more information, go to henryfordfairlane.org.