It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like...

It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like...
Large pond at Drake Well Museum with two fountains to circulate water. The pond is surrounded by evergreen trees and snow is falling.
Snow falling at Drake Well Museum & Park earlier this week (photo via DWM Facebook page)

If you're looking ahead to next week, please note that all Trails of History sites will be closed on Thursday, November 24, and most will be closed on Friday, November 25. Fort Pitt Museum, Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, and The State Museum of Pennsylvania will be open on Friday on their regular schedules. On Saturday and Sunday, many of our sites will participate in Small Business Saturday and Museum Store Sunday, offering discounts or other special deals in their museum stores. We'll have more info on that in a post next Wednesday or you can check the PHMC website or your favorite site's social media.

This weekend, there are multiple options for programs, in addition to a regular site visit. Some sites have moved to reduced winter schedules already, so always check ahead before heading out. I hope you get a chance to explore without too much turkey-related preparation stress.

Up Next

Saturday, November 19

  • Holiday on the Homefront (in-person); Saturday and Sunday, 10 am-3 pm; PA Military Museum
    • Experience a 1940s Pennsylvania Christmas and learn about how soldiers and their families found holiday cheer during World War II. Santa will be on hand for photos (advance registration required), and there will be crafts and music. Regular admission charged for youth; accompanying adults are free. Activities run 10 am-3 pm each day (info and Santa photo registration).
  • From Seneca to Seneca-Cayuga (in-person); 10 am-5 pm; Fort Pitt Museum
    • This one-day conference will welcome speakers from federally recognized tribes as they explore the past, present, and future of the Iroquoian peoples who found a second homeland in the Ohio Country. The museum's new exhibit, "Guyasuta: The Life and Legend of a Seneca Chief," will also be open for participants to explore (Seneca symposium info and registration).
  • StoryTime (in-person); 10:30-11:30 am; The State Museum of PA
    • Read ART by Patrick McDonnell and create your own artwork to display at home. For ages 2 to Pre-K and included in regular admission (StoryTime info).
  • Pennsylvania Elk: 100 Years of Conservation (in-person); 1-2 pm; PA Lumber Museum
    • Jeremy Banfield, elk biologist with the PA Game Commission, will provide an engaging overview of the Commonwealth's elk management program (PA Elk program info).
  • Candlelight Tours (in-person); 5:30-8 pm; Conrad Weiser Homestead
    • Visit the buildings by candlelight, see living history demonstrations, and enjoy some 18th-century music. Several of the living history scenarios take place outdoors, so please dress for the weather (Candlelight Tours info).
  • Colonial Cocktail Hour (in-person); 7-10 pm; Bushy Run Battlefield
    • Explore the history of England's 18th-century "Gin Craze" and taste test some cocktails of the period 1720-1765 along with some hors d'oeuvres. Must be at least 21 years old to attend. Tickets are $25 and are available online (Cocktail Hour info and tickets).

Sunday, November 20

  • Open Hearth Cooking Demonstration (in-person); 1-4 pm; Pennsbury Manor
    • The cooks will revel in the extravagant use of sugar and spices to impress the Penns' guests. Included in regular admission (open hearth cooking info).

Wednesday, November 23

  • Family Friendly Tour: Transportation (in-person); 11:30 am-12:30 pm; The State Museum of PA
    • This family friendly tour looks at transportation changes throughout Pennsylvania’s history. Join Museum Educators to learn about the vehicles that have helped move us across our state. Included in regular admission (Family Tour info).

Advance Tickets or Registrations

  • Candlelight Open House (in-person); Saturday, Nov. 26, 5-8:30 pm; Ephrata Cloister
    • Spend a few minutes or hours visiting with local craftsmen as they share their stories and wares. Included in the evening’s event will be Fraktur calligraphy by Emily Smucker-Beidler, and Matt and Elaine Vardjan of Pennsylvania Folk Art Papers showing paper stars and block prints. Additionally, demonstrations will be provided by local spinners and the letterpress will be working in the Printing Office. The whole family can become craftsmen making small treasure boxes just the size for stocking stuffers. The Ephrata Cloister Chorus will be singing a short program at 5:30, 6:30, and 7:30, and the Woodlands Trio will add to the sounds of the evening at 6:00, 7:00 and 8:00. Tickets are $7 for ages 3 and up, available online or at the door (Candlelight Open House info and tickets).
  • Holly Nights (in-person); Thursday and Friday, Dec. 1 and 2, 6-9 pm; Pennsbury Manor
    • Come and experience the enchantment of Pennsbury Manor by candlelight. There will be music, tours, craft demos, and a visit with Father Christmas. The event runs 6-9 pm both nights. Tickets: Adults, $14; Seniors, $12; Children age 4+, $6. Tickets can be purchased at the door or ahead of time via Eventbrite (Holly Nights ticket link).
  • Christmas with the Conductor (in-person); Saturday, Dec. 3, and Saturday, Dec. 10, 11 am and 2 pm; Railroad Museum of PA
    • Do you love a classic holiday story? The Museum conductor will punch your child’s souvenir train ticket and welcome you on board one of the historic railroad cars for a lively reading. Kids then have more fun decorating their own gingerbread cookie in Jack Frost Station and receive a small bag of special goodies to take home. Two 45-minute sessions, one at 11 am and one at 2 pm. For ages 3 and older; children must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian. Space is limited and registration is required; ticket sales end Nov. 28. Cost is $10 per child, in addition to regular admission (Dec. 3 info and tickets OR Dec. 10 info and tickets).
  • SOLD OUT Children's Christmas Party (in-person); Sunday, Dec. 4, 1-4 pm
    • A holiday party with games, crafts, entertainment, and a visit from Santa. Geared for ages 5 to 12. Tickets ($5) on sale now (Christmas Party tickets).
  • Ethnic Traditions (in-person); 5:30-8:30 pm; Somerset Historical Center
    • Learn about ethnic traditions of people living in Somerset County through food and music. This year's program will feature traditions of India, Sweden, and Chile. Tickets are $25, with several multi-ticket options available. Event takes place at Friedens Lutheran Church (SHC contact info for tickets).
  • Holidays at Hope Lodge & Colonial Tavern (in-person); Saturday, Dec. 10, 11 am-4 pm; Hope Lodge
    • Enjoy a self-guided tour of the mansion with holiday decorations and music by members of the Ambler Symphony Orchestra (noon-2 pm). Tickets are $8 for ages 12 and up, free for members and children younger than 12. Purchase tickets at the door or online via Eventbrite. For an additional charge, visitors age 21+ can also taste seasonal craft beers from Round Guys Brewing Co. (Holidays at Hope Lodge tickets).
  • Christmas at the Cloister (in-person); Monday and Tuesday, Dec. 12 and 13, 6:30-8 pm; Ephrata Cloister
    • Spend a few moments in quiet reflection with seasonal readings and music in the historic Saal. Two programs each night, one starting at 6:30 and the other at 8:00. Seating is limited and advance tickets are required (Christmas at the Cloister tickets).
  • Late Nite with the Belsnickle! (in-person); Friday, Dec. 16, 7-9 pm; Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum
    • Holiday-themed crafts, PA Dutch traditions, a visit with Belsnickle, and an adult beverage. Must be at least 21 to attend. Event is rain or shine; dress for the weather, including shoes appropriate for walking the site. Tickets are $40 (Late Nite info and tickets).
  • Putz'n and Brutz'n with the Belsnickle! (in-person); Saturday, Dec. 17, 1-3 pm; Landis Valley Vilage & Farm Museum
    • This family-friendly event includes a walking tour, making a punched tin ornament, light refreshments, a visit with the Belsnickle, and more. The program will be held rain or shine, so please dress for the weather with appropriate shoes. Tickets are $30 for people age 8 and up, $20 for ages 3-7. Space is limited, and reservations are required (Family Belsnickle event).


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