Sunday, June 27, 2010

A Step Back in Time

As promised, here are photographs of the City of Gardner's 225th Anniversary Celebration! We coordinated walking tours of the historic uptown district of our city and re-enactments in the Old Burying Ground. Eleven characters came to life in the cemetery. Sheila played murder victim Miriam Kneeland (d. 1855). She wore a dress over a 4 hoop crinoline (if you have ever tried getting into a car in a crinoline, or through a door jam it isn't easy). She added antique lace cuffs and a period collar and stunning cameo. She carried an antique parasol, carriage fan and a small antique hymnal from our collection. She kept her 21st century needs in an antique picnic basket and drank water from a black transferware handleless cup.
Mayor Mark Hawke played first settler Elisha Jackson and Kerry Bettez played his wife. Fire chief Ron Therrien portrayed Samuel Kelton. With his sideburns, he was destined to play the role. Rev. Gary Heikkila played Rev. Jonathan Osgood and Doris Forte portrayed his wife. Mike Ellis, Don Miller, Rev. Jim Hinds, Pat Gerry, and David Bojarcauk also played roles.

Each actor stood by his/her character's grave as the crowd of over 300 people moved through the cemetery from the first settler to a Civil War soldier.

Each performance was filmed and will appear on local TV beginning tomorrow night! Hollywood, here we come! One of our actors was a Hollywood actor! Rev. Gary Heikkila played with Liza Minelli in a movie some 40 years ago (ironically, he played a Rev. in a cemetery scene...)

Other events were: a tea party, a bike decorating contest, pie judging contest and fair at the Congregational Church, and displays and a silver smithing demonstration at the Gardner Museum! There was even a fireman's muster with antique firefighting equipment. Below, Sherrill stands next to an old firetruck from the town of Westminster.

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