Listening to a spirited reading of the Declaration of Independence, playing in a pick-up game of “Town Ball,” helping a roving juggler practice his art, learning quilting techniques, marching in a grand parade, and drilling and mustering with military re-enactors are some of the activities visitors can take part in at Van Cortlandt Manor in Croton-on-Hudson on Independence Day, Wednesday, July 4th, 2007 from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Van Cortlandt Manor will be dressed up in its finest patriotic regalia to celebrate the nation’s founding while visitors can journey back to circa 1806 and enjoy dramatic readings of the Declaration of Independence.
The day’s centerpiece is a vast parade starting at 2:00 PM in front of the manor house. The parade will traverse the entire site and end with a special ceremony, singing, dancing, and games. Children can carry banners and all are invited to march. “We encourage everybody to join in and demonstrate their patriotic spirit,” said Althea Corey, site director at Van Cortlandt Manor.
From 10:00 AM to 2:30 PM, a military re-enactment group will set up camp and invite one and all to drill and muster. Visitors can help with camp activities such as fire starting with flint and steel and open hearth cooking, where chefs will prepare dishes like those Revolutionary War soldiers would have eaten.
Strolling the grounds will be storyteller Jim Keyes and a fiddle player, and visitors can watch and take part in blacksmithing.
While this event could be a perfect preamble to a picnic elsewhere, classic Fourth of July food from Geordanes Market in Irvington will be available, giving visitors an easy option for lunch. Of course, picnickers are welcome to bring their own treats.
Admission is $12 for adults; $10 for seniors and students 18-25 with ID; $6 for children 5-17; and free for children under age 5 and HHV members. Tours of Van Cortlandt Manor houses are included in the price of admission. Van Cortlandt Manor is located at 525 South Riverside Avenue in Croton-on-Hudson, just off Route 9A (map). For information, please call 914-631-8200 or visit www.hudsonvalley.org.
Historic Hudson Valley is a network of six historic sites in Sleepy Hollow Country and the Great Estates region; Washington Irving’s Sunnyside; Kykuit, the Rockefeller estate, a historic site of the National Trust; Philipsburg Manor; the Union Church of Pocantico Hills; Van Cortlandt Manor; and Montgomery Place Historic Estate.