Last Gasp of Summer? Hardly!

There have been lots of great programs at or related to sites on the Trails of History this summer; media (social and otherwise) bring them to you wherever you are. In the last couple of weeks, Pennsylvania Military Museum held their VIETNAM Revisited program, Flagship Niagara went to Duluth, Minnesota, as part of the War of 1812 Bicentennial, Eckley Miners’ Village hosted their 1940s weekend, summer camps were held at Old Economy Village and the Anthracite Heritage Museum, and Somerset Historical Center opened a photo exhibit featuring the work of photographer Walt Bowen and contemporary photographers. To name just a few. August promises more to come.

Anthracite Heritage Museum and Scranton Iron Furnaces
Aug. 31-Sept. 1: Guided tours of Scranton Iron Furnaces—a rare chance for a guided tour (you can also check out the South Side Farmers Market on Saturday). The Scranton Times Tribune just posted a 1942 photo of the furnaces on its "Pages from the Past" blog. 11 am-4 pm.

Bushy Run Battlefield
Aug. 2-4: 250th Anniversary of Battle of Bushy Run—events run from Friday evening through Sunday evening, with commemorative programs, a monument unveiling, battle reenactments and more. Official schedule and info is here. You can read more about the 250th anniversary here, here, and here.

Conrad Weiser Homestead
Aug. 4: 18th-century Interpretive Sunday—learn about life in Berks County in the mid-18th century. Noon-4 pm.

Cornwall Iron Furnace
Aug. 13: Lecture/performance by Ron Garman and The Heritage Trombones—learn about the history of the trombone and the evolution of musical styles during this unique program. (Go here for more info on Garman and other group members). Part of the Friends of Cornwall Iron Furnace lecture series, the program takes place in Freeman Hall auditorium at Cornwall Manor. 7 pm.
Aug. 16: Cornwall Blast!—this event features local breweries and wineries, music by the Wayne Fox Trio, and actor Larry Sheaf as guest emcee; there will be “soft” refreshments suitable for designated drivers and folks younger than 21. Tickets are limited and must be purchased in advance (go here for all the details). 6-9 pm.

Daniel Boone Homestead
Aug. 4, 18, 25: Interpretive Sundays—spend Sunday afternoons in August learning about candle dipping (8/4); militia muster (8/18); and camp cooking (8/25). Included in regular admission. Noon-4 pm.
Aug. 7, 14, 21, 28: Sawmill Operation Days—subject to staff availability, there will be demonstrations of the site’s water-powered sawmill. Free of charge (admission rates apply to visit the historic area and the homestead). 11 am & 2 pm.
Aug. 10-11: Battles at Boone: A Revolutionary War Encampment—billed as the largest living history event in Berks County since 2008, this program brings together military and civilian reenactors, sutlers, craftspeople, and more. For details go here. Adults, $10; Seniors, $8; Children, $6 (cash or check only, no credit cards). 9 am-4 pm each day.

Drake Well Museum
Aug. 3-4: Historic Pithole Open—the visitor center will be open, so enjoy the orientation film and the excellent diorama that shows the town in its heyday. (General location map is here—ignore the letter “A” and look where it says “historic site.”) 10 am-4 pm.
Aug. 24: Drake Day—this year, the annual celebration of the first successful well drilled for oil will include a 19th-century circus program. Check the website closer to the event for more info or call 814/827-2797.
Aug. 31: Oil Valley Blacksmiths Association—this monthly event brings local blacksmiths to the site to show how it’s done. Included in regular admission. 9 am-2 pm.

Eckley Miners’ Village
Aug. 17-18: Living History and Civil War Weekend—encampments, demonstrations, and entertainment of the Civil War era. Go here for details closer to the date. 10 am-5 pm.
Aug. 31: WYSO exhibit closes.

Ephrata Cloister
Aug. 3: Craft Demonstrations—Join Ephrata’s Student Historians, expert spinner and weaver Ruth Konrad, and furniture maker and bookbinder Dave Hoffman as they share some of the crafts and skills of the 18th century (go here for more info). Included in regular admission. 10 am-4 pm.
Aug. 4: Ice Cream Social—enjoy an evening of ice cream (pick your own sundae toppings) and music (vocalist Dean Sensenig) in a beautiful setting. Tickets are $3 and are available ahead of time (Museum Store or Visitor Center) or on the day. 4-7 pm.

Erie Maritime Museum and Flagship Niagara
Aug. 13: Erie Gives—the museum and ship are participants in this year’s community-wide online fundraising drive. Go to any time between 8 am and 8 pm on August 13, make a minimum donation of $25, and Flagship Niagara League will also receive a prorated match from the Erie Community Foundation.

Fort Pitt Museum
Aug. 10: Summer Saturdays at the Fort—this month the focus is on the 250th anniversary of the siege of Fort Pitt. 10 am-5 pm.

Graeme Park
Aug. 25: Yellow Fever Living History Program—Philadelphia experienced a dramatic yellow fever epidemic in 1793. Graeme Park, like other country estates, became a haven removed from the city’s contagions. This program explores the impact of the epidemic on Elizabeth Graeme Fergusson and her circle of family and friends. Check the website closer to the date for details.

Hope Lodge
Aug. 9: Movie Night—bring a blanket or lawn chair and settle in to watch Lincoln, winner of numerous awards including Daniel Day-Lewis’s Academy Award for Best Actor (James Spader steals a scene or two, IMHO). Presented by Whitemarsh Township Parks and Recreation. Rain date is Aug. 10. Starts at dusk.

Joseph Priestley House
Aug. 4: Oxygen Day—in honor of Dr. Priestley’s best known scientific contribution, this program features costumed docents throughout the house (which includes what may be the first laboratory in America) and chemistry demonstrations. Free admission. 1-4 pm; chemistry demos at 1:30 and 3 pm.

Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum
Aug. 6: Hands-On History Day—experience chores, games, and crafts from the past, take a wagon ride, and learn your lessons in the one-room schoolhouse. Cost is $10 per person. 10 am-3 pm.
Aug. 10: Tales, Legends, and Lore—a full day of storytelling around the site, plus hands-on activities and wagon rides. Go here for the day’s schedule of events and admission fees. 10 am-4 pm.
Aug. 24: Art Show at Landis Valley—Landis Valley’s museum store will host an array of local artisans selling their wares (many will also demonstrate their crafts). Music and food (for purchase) are also on tap. Admission to the art show is free; but why not buy a ticket to the site and make a day of it? 9 am-4 pm

Old Economy Village
Aug. 7: Exhibit opening—enjoy light refreshments as you explore three new Visitor Center exhibits developed by OEV’s summer interns. Learn about Harmonist winemaking, forays into alchemy, and the history of the Rapp Houses (currently closed to the public for renovations). Admission is free. 5-7 pm.
Aug. 14: Lecture—“Economy Village and Allegheny County” explores the relationship of the Harmony Society with the larger Pittsburgh region. Speaker is Dave Aitken, retired railroader, history buff, and OEV volunteer. Admission is free. 7-8:30 pm.
Aug. 31: Gertrude Rapp’s Birthday Party—a full day of activities, with crafts demonstrations, ginger cookies, and ice cream. Included in regular admission. 10 am-5 pm.

Pennsbury Manor
Aug. 4: Historic Trades—the blacksmith and the joyner will demonstrate their skills. 1-4 pm.
Aug. 11: Living History Theater—“What’s New at Neshaminy” introduces the women of Middletown Quaker Meeting, who gathered monthly to discuss issues of concern in their community. Learn about some of the 17th-century topics they shared. 1-4 pm.
Aug. 18: Open Hearth Cooking—it’s “cooks’ choice” today as the cooks select their favorite 17th-century recipes to share. 1-4 pm.
Aug. 25: Garden Highlights—spend some peaceful time in the kitchen garden. 1-4 pm.

Pennsylvania Military Museum
Saturdays and Sundays: Guided Tours included in museum admission on weekends during the month of August. 1 pm only.
Aug. 3: Boot Camp for Kids—registration deadline was July 6, so mark your calendars for next year.

Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania
Aug. 16-17: Hogwarts Express Parties—elements of the popular Harry Potter books come to life among the museum’s railcars and street scenes. The program is recommended for ages 8 and up (attendees must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian). Space is limited; registrations are accepted by mail or in person, and all those attending over age 3 are also subject to museum admission fees. Go here for details and a registration form. 11 am, 1 pm.

State Museum of Pennsylvania
Aug. 1, 8, 15: StoryTime in Curiosity Connection—staff and volunteers read a different book each week, selected with children ages 3-5 in mind, and then direct a related play activity. This year’s series is dedicated to Dawn Dutcher, Curiosity Connection director, who passed away in May. StoryTime is included in regular admission. 10 am.
Aug. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30: Learn at Lunchtime—the museum offers free admission mid-day every Friday, along with docent tours of select exhibits. 11 am-1:30 pm (docent tours noon to 1 pm).
Aug. 11: Artist Conversations—this month’s installment features artist and photographer Carl Sander Socolow talking with State Museum photographer Don Giles as they tour the “Art of the State” exhibit. Included in regular admission. 1 pm.
Aug. 16: 3rd in the Burg—this month’s program features the State Museum Planetarium. Free showings of “We Are Aliens” will be offered at 6:30, 7, and 7:30 pm.

Washington Crossing Historic Park
Aug. 5-9: Summer History Camp—“Travelers of Colonial History” is the theme for this year. Students who will be entering grades 3, 4, or 5 this fall are eligible to participate. Cost is $150. Call 215/493-4076 for more info and to see if there are spaces available.


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