FACTS AND QUESTIONS
Here are a view common questions we have received over the years regarding our locality, treasures, and grounds. Don't see your question here? Visit our connect page and ask us.
Why Door County?
Door County may seem like the end of the world on the map, but coming to Door County has been a family tradition in the Linden family since Brian was a young boy. Summers spent camping, swimming at Newport State Park, and watching the sunset in Ephraim were strong memories when Brian brought Jeanee to Door County for a vacation in 1988. Years later in 1995, while living in Taiwan, a chance visit to Door County brought the Ellison Bay church to their attention. With a strong vision of what the building could be and knowing that they wanted to move back to the US to have their first child, the Lindens put out an offer to the church and it was accepted. That seemingly simple act started a new course in their lives.
The former Trinity Lutheran church, built in 1955, is a product of innovative architecture that was created for only a handful of other churches in the U.S. The arched wooden ceiling and pitched pillars resembles the interior of a beautifully handcrafted ship. The main addition by the Lindens was to open up the main floor creating an atrium to connect the two-story gallery.
How do you bring back all these treasures?
The business of moving objects from another country is never easy and all of the items collected abroad are personally sourced by the Lindens. Everything has to be consolidated into one city and packed, inspected at customs and loaded onto a container ship. The containers come in 20 or 40 cubic meter sizes which one can compare to half to one freight train compartment. They are loaded onto big shipping vessels and find their first point of entry usually on the west coast near Los Angeles. From there the container is unloaded and, put on the “rails” by train to Chicago. After final customs clearance, the container is once again moved onto a semi-truck and brought up to the gallery. After much anticipation, the semi-truck driver arrives and he ceremoniously takes a bolt cutter to unlock our container. Getting it off of the truck requires a lot of muscle, sweat, and commotion. It’s amazing every time, very much like opening a much-anticipated Christmas present, ten times over!
May we walk in your garden?
By all means, please do! Our Asian-Western rock garden was conceived and built by Brian over several summers. The section facing Highway 42 was originally a grassy lawn and a driveway to the entrance of the church. The current garden has a large silver leaf maple tree, black locust tree, pagoda dogwoods, birch trees, a mix of perennials and a bright red wooden Japanese style bridge that spans the rock-river bed. Many people may not be aware that the Mink River actually runs under the gallery’s basement floors before it flows to the bay.
The pagoda structure on the side of the building has a wooden gong brought from a temple in Laos. The painting of birch trees on the exterior door is by artist Susan Anderson. Her large painting of the bonsai tree on the back wall of the gallery was meant to represent the blending of our western and eastern cultures.
Do you ship?
We are able to ship small and big items nationally. We work with a local shipping company who works to find the lowest rates possible. They have experience packing very delicate to large items and we work together to ensure that your items reach your home safely.
Do you work with designers?
We welcome working with interior designers and offer discounts to the trade.
What is the Linden Centre in China?
The Linden Centre is an award-winning boutique hotel offering the intrepid traveler an inspiring exploration into Southwest China. At our heart, we are a social enterprise immersed in the communities where we reside operating programs in hospitality, travel, education, and the arts. Guests who come and stay with us as an individual traveler or with a group have an opportunity to immerse themselves in a deeper way through our activities and collaboration with the wider community.
For more information visit the Linden Centre's website www.linden-centre.com.
When are you open?
Our gallery is open for the season during the second week in May and closes right after the Ellison Bay Art Crawl on the last weekend in October. Each year our opening and closing day is different, so if you are coming during this time, please give us a call to check the hours. We are open on all holidays during the season and will only close for an emergency. We are proud to say that this will be our 22nd year doing business in Door County!