A series of programs reflecting 400 years of Hudson Valley history and culture for the Quadricentennial year
- Finding a worthwhile, fun and educational activity for the whole family in the days of belt-tightening can be a challenge, but also a moment for local treasures to shine. As part of its Quadricentennial year celebrations, celebrating 400 years of Hudson Valley history, Senate House State Historic Site
, in historic uptown Kingston NY, is offering several free, all-day events, perfect for people of all ages. Please call (845) 338-2786 for more information; all events occur rain or shine.
Sunday May 3, from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., a Native American History and Culture Day
will include dance and drum performances by the Nimham Mountain Singers, singing northern woodland songs. Visitors will enjoy displays and demonstrations on traditional and historic Native culture, including friction firestarting, flint knapping, cordage, pottery, cooking, hunting, tools and games. Hands-on activities and games will also engage youngsters. Honored guests attending this event include Darryl Stonefish, Tribal Historian of the Moravian Band Delaware Nation, a community descending from the original people of this area, who now reside in Canada.
Saturday, June 13, from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., a Dutch History and Culture Festival
celebrates this very important influence on the history of the Hudson Valley. 17th-century re-enactors, music, dance, food, demonstrations and activities will offer something for every age and interest. Tours of the Senate House as well as the site's museum and special exhibition will also be free all day Saturday and on Sunday, courtesy of Friends of Senate House State Historic Site.
Saturday, Aug. 8, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., a Civil War Encampment and Activities Day
will feature a soldiers' encampment of re-enactors, live Civil War-era music and dance (with instruction!), hands-on activities and demonstrations.
Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 3-4, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., an African American Culture and History Festival
offers two full days of popular and sacred music, dance, historical drama, art, food, exhibits, hands-on activities and more, celebrating the contributions of African Americans in the Hudson Valley and beyond. Featured performers include Voices of Glory, a trio of young performers gaining international recognition, based in the Hudson Valley, as well as the Ulster County Community Choir, and Voices of Praise. Also part of the weekend are hip-hop-inspired moves from the local dance troupe Energy, dramatic performances of people from the past, film screenings and presentations on local and regional African American history.
These special events are sponsored by the Ulster County Legislature, the Ulster County Quadricentennial Commission, the Friends of Senate House, the Palisades Interstate Parks Commission, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, the Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area in partnership with the National Park Service and Congressman Maurice Hinchey, and the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial.
Senate House State Historic Site is open April 18 through October 31, 2009, Wednesday through Saturday, 10am to 5pm, and Sundays 1:00 to 5pm. Senate House State Historic Site is part of a system of parks, recreation areas and historic sites operated by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and the site is one of 25 facilities administered by the Palisades Interstate Parks Commission in New York and New Jersey.
For further information about this and other upcoming events please call the site at (845) 338-2786 or visit the State Parks website at http://www.nysparks.com/
Rich Goring or Pam Malcolm