An April 6 program by the Woodinville Heritage Museum will feature how Molbak’s grew from a cluster of Woodinville greenhouses in 1956 to today’s international operation.
The free 10 a.m. program at the Sammamish Valley Grange will feature Egon and Laina Molbak, who came from Denmark more than 50 years ago and purchased five small greenhouses on NE 175th Street in Woodinville, including a small bungalow where they began raising their family. The family operation survived the first month, when a boiler failure during a freezing night nearly doomed their carnation crop. They switched to bedding plants, geraniums, chrysanthemums, and eventually their famous poinsettias, while adding a retail shop in 1966. Today, Molbak’s has passed to the second generation and is operated by their son, Jens, while being billed as the largest single-outlet garden center in the nation. Many employees have been trained in horticulture or have a strong interest in gardening, making it an attraction year-around.
The general public is welcome to the free program at the grange, which will be preceded by a 9:30 a.m. membership meeting. The grange is located on 148th Avenue NE, just north of the Old Hollywood Schoolhouse.
The Woodinville Heritage Museum is open the first Sunday of each month until Memorial Day and then every Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. through Labor Day weekend. The next opening is Sunday, April 7, the day after the Molbak program.
The museum is housed in the DeYoung House, featuring furnishings that date to the 1930s and earlier. The house was built on Woodinville’s main street in 1931 and was occupied by John and Ellen DeYoung and their six children for 30-plus years. The house was moved in 1973 to its present location at 14121 NE 171st St, east of Woodinville Urgent Care Center.