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.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Our Town's Birthday!!!

Our town is celebrating its 225th birthday on June 26!! Our local newspaper(the oldest continuously run, independently operated newspaper in the country)is celebrating by having a contest for the "Best Dressed House." We have started with a freshly planted antique bicycle basket to adorn the front door. The basket contains pink impatiens, a pink geranium, vinca vines and a lovely purple cascading flower whose name eludes me at the moment!! We bought three antiqued parade flags at Country Mischief(Where else ??)to finish off a Summertime patriotic look. We'll post more pictures as we continue to dress the house!!!
Sheila and I have been working with the historical subcommittee on walking tours of the historic uptown district and on cemetery reenactments of our town's famous personages. All the actors are fabulous and are busy memorizing their scripts, and working on their costumes. Sheila is putting last minute touches on her Miriam Kneeland costume. She is looking through our antique clothing collection to find just the right parasol and gloves.
Does anybody know how big a breath it takes to blow out 225 candles???