Early-summer exhibition will run through June 24

Shopping for the transition to summer weather is all about metamorphosis—coming out of your winter cocoon and spreading your wings in lightweight finery. Starting this weekend, visitors to Polaris Fashion Place can learn a bit about the process as it happens in nature. A new butterfly conservatory and exploration station will allow shoppers to take a break to feed a butterfly and even purchase a live caterpillar to take home so they can watch its transformation.

It’s all part of the trend to create additional reasons for shoppers to step away from their keyboards and step inside a bricks-and-mortar store. At Polaris, visits with Santa and the Easter Bunny as well as a “Boo ‘n’ Brew” October event, where kids trick or treat while parents enjoy a beer garden, help to increase foot traffic around the holidays. For summer, Polaris is picking up the pace. In addition to the Butterflies! exhibit, a Thursday night outdoor concert series (June 21 to Aug. 23) as well as the KidX Club on Fridays from 10:30 a.m. to noon (June 15 to Aug. 17) aim to make it more fun for families to plan an outing to the mall.

“I come from the tourism and attractions business,” says Polaris marketing director Mary Dimitrijeska. “We always want to have something new to surprise and delight our guests.”

Dimitrijeska hired the exhibitions company Creative RT LLC to bring in the mobile butterfly exhibit, which is USDA approved, she says. Those planning a visit can book a time online (tickets are $5) or sign up for a slot when they arrive at the mall. The experience includes crafts, games and puzzles.

Butterflies! is located on the lower level in the mall’s center court, near JCPenney, and will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and noon to 6 p.m. Sundays from May 5 through June 24. adoptabutterfly.com/polarisfashionplace/

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