The National Endowment for the Humanities Blue Star Museum program for 2013 has ended, but free regular admission for active duty military members and their immediate families is offered year-round on the Trails of History. Click here for the list.

For this year’s Drake Day (August 24), the annual celebration of the first successful well drilled for oil, Drake Well Museum presented an 1860s-style circus—complete with jugglers, acrobats, and fire-eaters—plus a photo booth, art activities by the Titusville Council on the Arts, a vintage band organ brought by Debence Antique Music World, food vendors, storyteller Bill Stumpf, and a petting zoo. By all accounts, a great time was had by all at this first-time (probably not last-time) event. A special admission fee encouraged local families to enjoy a day of entertainment and visit the museum’s regular exhibits as well. Thanks to Bruce Pratt, who shared the video below on Drake Well’s Facebook page.

On the other side of the state, “William Penn” visited Penn Valley School to check out a new mural depicting Pennsbury Manor. Also, in advance of Pennsbury’s 75th anniversary as a museum, summer interns conducted research on the site’s history and posted some of their findings on the blog here, here, and here.

Photo via Pennsbury Manor's Facebook page

We’ve posted lots of info about the War of 1812 bicentennial on Trailheads. Flagship Niagara has spent much of the summer travelling to events around the Great Lakes. On Labor Day, the ship and crew were in Put-in-Bay, Ohio, for a reenactment of the Battle of Lake Erie featuring tall ships as well as quite a few other watercraft. Actor Billy Campbell portrayed Oliver Hazard Perry, transferring from US Brig Lawrence (played by the Windy) to US Brig Niagara (as herself). The Toledo Blade posted a gallery of photos from the event here.

This weekend is Tall Ships Erie 2013, with 10 tall ships, entertainment, and more. Go here for details. Niagara will return to Put-in-Bay next week for a wreath-laying ceremony on Sept. 10, the actual anniversary of the Battle of Lake Erie.

Other events this weekend on the Trails of History include Mountain Craft Days (today through Sunday) at Somerset Historical Center, Founder's Day (Saturday) at Ephrata Cloister, and Sunday interpretive programs at Conrad Weiser Homestead, Daniel Boone Homestead, Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum, and Pennsbury Manor.


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