RIDGEFIELD, Conn. -- American history will spring to life this June when an old friend returns to the Keeler Tavern Museum in Ridgefield.
The museum grounds will play host to a free afternoon of exhibits, demonstrations and hands-on experiences from the Colonial Days through the Gilded Age. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 13, at the Keeler Tavern Museum, 132 Main St., in Ridgefield.
Children and their families will be able to meet some of the museum’s past residents and visiting celebrities in period costumes strolling the grounds.
“The museum is focusing on the celebrities who owned or visited this site on Ridgefield’s Main Street,” said Keeler Tavern Museum Executive Director Hildi Grob in a statement. “Our event’s mascot -- Columbus the Elephant -- was a celebrity of his time.”
In a poster in the museum’s collection, dated 1818, people paid 25 cents each (more like $10 today) to see Columbus when he appeared at what was then the Keeler Tavern.
“We hope that, while there is no admission to Family Day, attendees will give generously at the donation stations we’ll have on site,” said Grob. “While we can’t bring an elephant here, we’re offering everyone a chance to get up close and personal to history from Colonial Days to the Gilded Age.”
Visitors can tour the museum and enjoy the Farming Tool exhibit in the Carriage Barn.
Re-enactors from the Fifth Connecticut Regiment will perform musket drills and firing, teach 18th-century games, and describe the life of a Revolutionary War soldier.
Kids can enjoy crafts and outdoor games, as well as a petting zoo with pony rides. Live music featuring local bands and vocal groups will perform on the center stage. The afternoon will also feature an amateur cake contest, a silent auction of professionally-baked cakes and classic cars, to name a few of the events.
Local Family Day collaborators include: the Fred Astaire Studio with dance demonstrations in the barn, The Enchanted Garden with face painting, Prospector Theater with freshly popped popcorn, the Ridgefield Chorale, and a Ridgefield Library trivia contest.
Admission to the event is free, except for the pony rides. Food and refreshments will also be available for purchase from the on-site barbecue station.
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