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October 18, 2009 12:07:00 AM
STARKVILLE -- The center of Mississippi State university''s unique floral management academic program celebrates its 75th anniversary Oct. 30 with several special public activities.
The University Florist''s milestone recognition will feature a 10 a.m. program led by university professor emeritus Ralph Null of Columbus. Null, retired director of MSU''s hands-on teaching laboratory and professional flower shop, is an award-winning and internationally-recognized authority in the floral arts and retail floriculture.
"Capturing the Spirit: Innovations and Expressions with Plant Materials" will be the topic of his 90-minute presentation in the Chapel of Memories on the Starkville campus.
Offered through the department of plant and soil sciences, MSU''s floral management program was established to help meet the needs of America''s multibillion dollar retail floristry industry. The four-year program is the only one of its kind in the Southeast.
The birthday open house takes place 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at the laboratory-business'' Lee Boulevard location just west of Marketplace at Perry, MSU''s primary dining facility. Beginning at 2 p.m., free slices of cake will be given out in the on-site floral design studio.
Throughout the day, business manager and floral design instructor Lynette McDougald -- who, like Null, is a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers -- will be sharing with customers and visitors her ideas for eco-friendly winter home decorations.
Over his long career, Null has led more than 1,000 design demonstration programs around the world. His arrangements have graced White House state dinners and presidential inaugurals, Neiman Marcus catalogs and the windows of Macy''s and Saks department stores, among other venues.
For more information, contact McDougald at 662-325-3585.