Jim O’Brien and Jadon Rivard, from Old Sturbridge Village, previewed their annual “Evening of Illumination” this January.
NAME OF EVENT: Evening of Illumination at Old Sturbridge Village
DATES & TIMES: January 11 and 25, 6pm-7:30pm
ADDRESS: Old Sturbridge Village, 1 Old Sturbridge Village Rd
ABOUT THE EVENT:
How did New England families spend their evenings before the intrusion of texting, telephones, TVs and computers? Visitors to Old Sturbridge Village will get a rare chance find out as they tour the historic Village lit only by candles, oil lamps, lanterns, and firelight during Old Sturbridge Village’s “Evening of Illumination.” Guided by lantern light around the Village Common, guests visit select homes and shops to see how early New Englanders spent their evenings in the days before electricity. Visitors will be treated to music and storytelling throughout the tour, and will see Village artisans at work by candlelight.
Following the tours, visitors return to the Bullard Tavern for light refreshments, mulled cider, and a cash bar. Tours are limited to 15 people, and leave from the Visitor Center every 10 minutes from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. Advance registration is recommended as this event historically sells out. Register by clicking your desired time below.
According to Old Sturbridge Village historians, early New Englanders stayed warm and productive during the fall and winter despite dwindling daylight and long hours of darkness. With light and heat coming only from candles, oil lamps, lanterns, and fireplaces, 19th-century families gathered around the fire and played music, games, or listened quietly as someone read aloud by candlelight. In contrast, today’s hectic schedules rarely allow for quiet time like this in the evening – unless the power goes out in a snowstorm.
RELATED WEBSITE/PHONE: osv.org/event/evening-of-illumination/