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The Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission Announces Holiday Happenings along the Pennsylvania Trails of History

Harrisburg, PA –With Thanksgiving straight ahead, the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission is highlighting events with a distinct holiday flair that are sure to entertain, educate and warm the heart of each member of the family, plus a moment of remembrance for the anniversary of Pearl Harbor.

The Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission will host the Holiday Marketplace in the Village Square of The State Museum, featuring booths with Pennsylvania-themed gifts for sale from many of PHMC’s historic sites and museums, including Daniel Boone Homestead, Ephrata Cloister, Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum, Somerset Historical Center and The State Museum. Visit
Patriot’s Day 2018 – Brandywine Battlefield, Chadds Ford, Delaware County – Saturday, November 24, 10:00 AM–4:00 PM
Visitors will step back in time to the American Revolution by experiencing life in the Continental Army with reenactors; meeting historical figures such as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and Ned Hector; witnessing historical military and artisanal demonstrations; and engaging in interactive activities. This family-friendly event explores the Battle of Brandywine, the impact of the battle on the local community, and its legacy in American history. Visit
Candlelight Open House – Ephrata Cloister, Ephrata, Lancaster County – Saturday, November 24, 5:00 PM–8:30 PM
The charm of a candlelit autumn evening highlights this event at historic Ephrata Cloister, complete with craftsmen, music and refreshments. Finely made local handcrafts, books, holiday cards, artwork, real bayberry candles, clear toy candy, and old-fashioned puppets and other toys will be available at The Museum Store. Visit
Christmas at Cornwall House Tour – Cornwall Iron Furnace, Cornwall, Lebanon County – Saturday, December 1, 10:00 AM4:00 PM
At this self-guided tour of historic Lebanon County homes, visitors will learn the history of each of the featured homes and experience the detailed craftsmanship of the properties. Visit
Holidays at Hope Lodge – Hope Lodge, Fort Washington, Montgomery County – Saturday, December 1, 11:00 AM–5:00 PM
Visitors can enjoy a self-guided tour of the historic 1748 mansion—decorated for Christmas and featuring holiday music, teddy bears, trains and a children’s storytime—and then warm themselves in the summer kitchen, transformed into a Colonial tavern, with seasonal brews from Round Guys Brewing Co. Vintage-inspired decorations and gifts will be available at the Museum Shop. Visit
More than 100 years of holiday rail travel is the focus of this event, featuring costumed railroaders, seasonal music and holiday decorations among the museum’s world-class collection of trains. Costumed interpreters represent engineers, conductors, ticket agents and railroad passengers from days gone by. A visit from Santa and his helper top off this festive event. Visit
Holly Nights – Pennsbury Manor, Morrisville, Bucks County – Thursday, December 6 and Friday December 7 – 6:00 PM–9:00 PM
Pennsbury by candlelight has been a community tradition for more than 35 years. This joyous feast for the senses offers crackling fires, hot-mulled cider, dancing shadows, the bustle of Colonial craftspeople, and the merry sounds of carolers strolling the grounds.  Visit
Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day Tribute – Pennsylvania Military Museum, Boalsburg, Centre County Friday, December 7 – 12:45 PM–1:45 PM
Seventy-seven years ago, the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Hawaii was attacked by aircraft from the Imperial Japanese Navy. America was at war. This tribute is held beneath the guns of the battleship USS Pennsylvania, which was a witness to that attack. Light snacks and a period documentary film will be offered in the museum theater. Visit
Santa in the Shay – Pennsylvania Lumber Museum, Ulysses, Potter County – Saturday, December 8, 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
Instead of bringing his famous sleigh, Santa will be in the cab of the museum’s Shay locomotive to listen to holiday requests. Kids will take an instant photo with St. Nick and then use the image to make a special ornament for their tree. Cookies and hot cocoa will be served in the museum program room, and a variety of local artisans (along with the Lumber Museum’s gift shop) will have unique items for sale at a holiday bazaar. Visit
Noon Year’s Eve –The State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, Dauphin County – Friday, December 28, 10:00 AM–1:00 PM
Young children and their families are invited to welcome in the new year during the annual Noon Year’s Eve celebration. Kids will have the opportunity to enjoy their own special “ringing in of the New Year,” make a craft, dance and enjoy snacks. The Planetarium will be open for a show. The museum’s famous firefly and balloon drop will be held in Memorial Hall at 12:00 noon. Visit
The Pennsylvania Trails of History comprises 24 historic sites and museum administered by the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission. To find out more visit or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
MEDIA CONTACT: Howard Pollman, 717-705-8639

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