Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Pete Pike Museum Opens October 19

Pete Pike, founder of Pike Family Nurseries has been made a tremendous contribution to the nation’s green industry.  From humble beginnings with a limited formal education to a multi-million dollar business, Pike shows that anyone from anywhere can become anything with hard work and integrity.  He modestly proclaims: “I’m not an educated man.”  But he’s more educated than most people, learning in the school of hard knocks.

They say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Through the years, Pete involved his children in the family business.  And now, his daughter, Dana Pike-Van Vlake, has founded The Family Tree Garden Center, a family owned and operated nursery business located in Snellville, Ga.  “We are committed to offering expert advice and quality to everyone from novice plant lovers to master gardeners. Whether you are starting a patio garden, landscaping your home or looking for plants for a commercial job, we can help to select the right plants as well as offer planting tips and tricks to complete your project with excellence,” Dana proudly shares.

She’s also established the Pete Pike Museum, opening October 19, to honor her father’s work, and to make sure the family history lives on. This museum has been a long time coming.  Since 1958 William (Pete) Pike has been dedicated to his craft.  With his wife Geraldine by his side, he has been instrumental in beautifying Atlanta for over 50 years.  The opening of this museum is Pike’s way of showing his appreciation to his suppliers, employees, bankers, supporters and family.

“I started in the nursery business with absolutely nothing in my pocket and very little
education,” Pete recalls.  “ I worked every day from before the sun came up to after dark.  Many, many times I wanted to quit, but I chose to not be a quitter.  One year all of my plants froze and I lost everything.  I wanted to quit!  Many times I couldn’t pay my bills.  I wanted to quit.  But my suppliers supported me and some even gave me free plants to get back on my feet.  My bankers gave me many breaks.  It’s all about hard work, treating EVERYONE right and fair and knowing that it was not “my” nursery, but “our” nursery, from suppliers to employees.”

The grand opening of the Pete Pike Museum is the main event in a daylong Fall Festival Oct. 19 to benefit the Alzheimer's Association.  The event will feature a raffle with great prizes, gardening and cooking demonstrations, music, food and fun activities for the entire family.  The Family Tree will donate a portion of all sales from the day and all raffle proceeds to the Alzheimer's Association. For more information, visit

The Museum ribbon-cutting/ceremony with Pete Pike takes place at 10 a.m.

WHERE:         The Family Tree Garden Center
                        1983 East Main Street (Hwy. 78) in Snellville, GA