Gardens | Friends of the Gardens | Presentation

Les Jardins de Métis are owned and operated by Les Amis des Jardins de Métis (Friends of the Gardens). Les Amis des Jardins de Métis is a not for profit corporation and is recognized as a charitable organization (charitable number: 89657 3383 RR0001).

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis is responsible for the preservation and development of Les Jardins de Métis. The primary objective of the organization is to maintain the gardens and buildings and to preserve their unique character. The organization also has an educational and cultural mission. It is responsible for fundraising activities and campaigns to assist the organization in the realization of its objectives.

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis acquired Les Jardins de Métis following a privatization process initiated by the Government of Québec. The Government of Québec had operated the gardens since acquiring them from Brigadier Bruce Reford in September 1961. Following the announcement of the proposed closure of the garden in June 1994, Les Ateliers Plein Soleil, under the leadership of its president, Thérèse Beaulieu-Roy, rallied the local community in a common cause to preserve the gardens. Joining forces with several members of the Reford family, their bid for the gardens enjoyed broad support within the community. The government was similarly convinced that their bid provided the greatest assurance for the preservation and development of the gardens. Les Amis des Jardins de Métis was incorporated in February 1995. The act of sale between the Government of Québec and Les Amis des Jardins de Métis was completed on 4 July 1995.

Since 1995, the organization has established Les Jardins de Métis as one of the premier gardens in North America. Among the initiatives has been the establishment of a school visits program, the hosting of lectures and workshops. From 1998 to 2003 the gardens hosted the summer school of the Université de Montréal. In 2000, the gardens organized the first edition of the International Garden Festival, a major initiative to promote contemporary garden design and to position the gardens as a leading cultural and tourism destination.

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis is a partner in the development of the region, contributing to a number of local organizations and community efforts. It is active in promoting tourism, economic development, and employment creation in the region.

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis piloted an ambitious $5 million building and restoration program from 2003 to 2008 to restore the historic buildings on the property and improve facilities for visitors. The new visitor centre, designed by architects Atelier in situ (Stéphane Pratte and Annie Lebel), with landscapes by Vlan Paysages (Micheline Clouard and Julie Saint-Arnault), was opened in 2003. The building and landscapes won many awards, including the Governor General’s medal for architecture in 2006 for Atelier in situ.

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis have received several awards, including the Prix Gérard-Roussel from the Fédération des Caisses Populaires Desjardins du Bas-Saint-Laurent for its outstanding contribution to the community. Since 1995, the Gardens have won prizes at the Grand Prix du tourisme of Québec, including the 1st prize in 2000 and 2001. In 2007, the International Garden Festival was awarded the Prix Hector-Fabre by Québec’s Ministère des relations internationale in recognition of the event’s exemplary contribution to the promotion of one of Québec’s regions around the world.

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis has a board of six members. The board includes members of the Reford family, representatives of Les Ateliers Plein Soleil of Mont-Joli, and members from the community.

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis is incorporated in the province of Québec. Its head office is in Grand-Metis, Québec.

Its mailing address is:

Les Amis des Jardins de Métis
200, route 132,
Grand-Métis, Québec Canada
G0J 1Z0
Phone: 418 775-2222
Fax: 418 775-6201
Email: info@refordgardens.com