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Fort Loudoun State Historic Park to Hold an 18th Century Christmas Dec. 3

Wednesday, November 09, 2011 | 05:27am

VONORE, Tenn. – Fort Loudoun State Historic Park will present an 18th century Christmas celebration on Saturday, Dec. 3. Titled “Christmas 1757,” this annual event blends a festive holiday spirit with both educational opportunities and traditional entertainment. The event is free and open to the public.

“While Christmas in 1757 was a simpler time, it was a very festive occasion,” said Park Manager Jeff Wells. “This is a great opportunity to get a jump start on the holiday season, while stepping back in time to herald in the holidays.”

The 18th century Christmas event begins with a “roll call,” summoning re-enactment soldiers to their posts just as it would have been done 250 years ago. Throughout the day, costumed living history re-enactors will go about their garrison duties, while taking time to interact with visitors. Demonstrations of both crafts and skills also will be conducted, including cooking, laundering, blacksmithing and artillery drills.

Park visitors will get to see an 18th century infirmary, as well as soldiers’ barracks, the commander’s quarters and a Cherokee encampment. Throughout the day, soldiers will be commanded to sing Christmas carols and guests are encouraged to add their voices.

The daily schedule includes a Christmas church service, wassail tasting and a special candlelight tour of the fort. On this special occasion, the soldiers will perform a rare nighttime firing of the fort’s cannon. The Visitor Center and Museum at Fort Loudoun will be open throughout the program and light refreshments will be served just before the candlelight tour commences. The Fort’s gift shop and bookstore also will be open for visitors to find that unique Christmas gift.

Fort Loudoun State Historic Park is a 1,200-acre site on the location of one of the earliest British fortifications on the western frontier, built in 1756. Nearby were the principal towns of the Cherokee Nation including Tenase, namesake of our state, and Tuskegee, birthplace of Sequoyah. Today the fort and the 1794 Tellico Blockhouse overlook TVA's Tellico Reservoir and the Appalachian Mountains and are located one mile off Highway 411 on Highway 360 in Vonore.

For more information about the park or a complete schedule of events for Christmas 1757, please contact the Fort Loudoun State Historic Park office at (423) 884-6217 or visit the website at: www.tnstateparks.com/FortLoudoun.

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