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April 18, 2003

Get Your Children Hooked on History with Colonial Williamsburg's 2003 Interactive and Educational Family Programming

“There’s nothing to do!” Before your children say that, introduce them to Colonial Williamsburg’s 2003 family programs. Adults and children can get involved in a range of stimulating and educational activities from museum tours and hands-on programs in the Historic Area to evening performances. New for families during the spring and summer months are:

  • Historic Foodways Junior Interpreter Program. Colonial Williamsburg’s Junior Interpreter program is designed to get young guests more involved in 18th-century activities. In the Historic Foodways program, youth volunteers will interact with families to explain the role of children in an 18th-century Virginia kitchen. Using period equipment and cookbooks, youth volunteers will assist in the preparation of a variety of dishes. 10 a.m.-2 p.m., June-August, George Wythe and Peyton Randolph Kitchens.

  • Junior Interpreter Orientation. Volunteer youth in this program will introduce selected exhibition sites and trade shops to families through hands-on activities. June-August.

  • Papa Said, Mama Said. In the 18th century, slaves and their descendants created an oral culture that helped their community overcome the uncertainty of slavery. Learn the lessons that enslaved Virginians learned through their elders during this evening program. May 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, June 7 and June 14, Capitol. April 25, Williamsburg Lodge. Reservations are required. A special ticket is required.

  • “Art Stop.” This program allows children to create an art project inspired by unique examples of folk art in the exhibitions at the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum. 2 p.m., Fridays, June through August, Folk Art Museum.

    “Costume FUNdamentals.” Discover the “Language of Clothing” exhibition at the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum on a tour geared just for families. Children are encouraged to explore their creativity with a hands-on activity afterward. 2:30 p.m., Sundays, June through August, Wallace Museum.

  • “Lucy Lost Her Pocket,” June 8, July 6 and Aug. 3. In the 18th century, a pocket was different than it is today. Explore the exhibit for examples of pockets and then design your own.
  • “Fashion Designer,” June 15, July 13 and Aug. 10. Explore the styles of the 1770s in the “Language of Clothing” exhibit and then design your own suit or gown.
  • “It’s in the Bag,” June 22, July 20 and Aug. 17. Discover a variety of accessories used in the 1700s and then try stitching a drawstring bag.
  • “Apprenticeship,” June 29, July 27 and Aug. 24. Learn about the 18th-century fashion trades and prepare for an apprenticeship by making a needle case.

    In addition to new programming in Colonial Williamsburg, the restored capital of 18th-century Virginia, many other family programs will be back by popular demand. They include:

  • “A Conversation with Young Patriots.” Young guests and their families have an opportunity to talk with Founding Fathers Patrick Henry or Thomas Jefferson about growing up in Virginia before the American Revolution, how they were educated and what they did for “diversion” or what we call “fun.” 2 p.m., Saturdays, June-August, DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum’s Hennage Auditorium. Reservations are required.
  • Brickyard. Colonial Williamsburg’s youth volunteers introduce young guests to the brickmaking trade in 18th-century Williamsburg. Open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Wednesday.
  • Colonial Music Tour. This hour-long evening walking tour takes children and families on a journey through history to study 18th-century music—Fifes and Drums, chamber, folk, African-American music and popular music of the family. April 25, May 9, 23 and June 6. Tours start at the Greenhow Lumber House. Reservations are required. A special ticket is required.
  • Colonial Nursery and Garden. Colonial Williamsburg’s youth volunteers act as garden apprentices. Junior interpreters encourage young guests to plant seeds, haul water from the well, pick caterpillars from cabbage plants and many other daily tasks that explore the plants, tools and garden culture of 18th-century Williamsburg. Open daily 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. March through Dec. 24. Youth volunteers will be onsite June-August.
  • Costume Rental. Children get a different perspective on history when they wear colonial costumes. Girls can don a white lawn dress with a colored sash and boys can sport a white shirt, haversack and imitation rifle. The program is recommended for youth between the ages of 5-10. Costumes are rented by the day and it is suggested that the costume be picked up by noon. Costume rental is available from March 15-Dec. 31 at Market Square in the Historic Area, open at 9:30 a.m., return by 4:30 p.m., and Williamsburg Marketplace at the Visitor Center, open at 8:30 a.m., return by 6 p.m.
  • “Colonial Kids on Parade.” This evening program takes a look at the history of Williamsburg through the eyes of its children. Guests and their families have an opportunity to participate in this hour-long program that includes a puppet show, 18th-century dance, a fencing lesson, and African-American music and storytelling. April 24, May 25, Williamsburg Lodge. Reservations are required. A special ticket is required.
  • “Grand Medley of Entertainments.” A combination of circus, carnival and vaudeville entertainment, the Grand Medley re-creates an 18th-century traveling show. April 23, May 7, 14, 16, 21, 28, 30, June 4, 11 and 13, Kimball Theatre. Reservations are required. A special ticket is required.
  • “Wee Folk.” This 45-minute program allows children ages 3-7 to explore the galleries through stories and activities at the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum. 11 a.m., Wednesdays and Fridays, Folk Art Museum.

    “Explore Folk Art.” Explore the galleries and create a piece of folk art to take home. Saturdays, April through August, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum.

  • “Finally Time for Leisure,” 10:30 a.m., April 26. See examples of leisure art activities and learn about reverse painting on glass. Then, give it a try!
  • “Scherenschnitte…What’s That?” 10:30 a.m., May 10. Explore the galleries for Scherenschnitte, 19th-century German folk art, and then try the fascinating art of paper cutting for yourself.
  • “The Indigenous Gourd Orchestra,” May 24. Performances at 1 and 2 p.m. Activity takes place at 2 and 3 p.m. Join us following a performance of the Gourd Orchestra to create instruments from recycled objects.
  • “Making Memories,” 10:30 a.m., June 7, July 5 and Aug. 2. Scan the Folk Art Museum for examples of memory art and create a memory book to take home.
  • “Growing Up in the 19th Century,” 10:30 a.m., June 14, July 12 and Aug. 9. Create your own 19th-century toy after studying children’s leisure activities in the Folk Art Museum.
  • “Drawing on George,” 10:30 a.m., June 21, July 19 and Aug. 16. Scour the Folk Art Museum for images of the American flag, bald eagle, Lady Liberty and George Washington and then make your own patriotic folk art to take home.
  • “A Frak-Tour,” 10:30 a.m., June 28, July 26 and Aug. 23. Germans brought different art forms to the United States, including Frakturs. Study these unique objects and make one of your own.

    A Colonial Williamsburg admission ticket is required to attend all of these programs. Reservations or special tickets are needed where indicated. To make reservations for programs or check availability, call toll-free at (800) HISTORY.

    Known worldwide as the nation’s largest living history museum, Colonial Williamsburg’s mission is “that the future may learn from the past.” Colonial Williamsburg is located 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information, visit Colonial Williamsburg’s web site at

    Media Contact:
    Penna Rogers
    (757) 220-7121

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