Work and leisure activities of the 19th century will be the focus of Family Day at the Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington next Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. This is the sixth annual event and one of the museum's most popular. The entire 240-acre estate, formerly the site of the original du Pont black powder mills, will be open for tour. Demonstrations will show how black powder was made, and you can tour the 1803 du Pont family home and its restored French garden.
Hands-on activities allow visitors an opportunity to learn the arts of papermaking, quilting and punch paper sewing, write with a quill pen, or make hand-cranked ice cream and sample the results. The 61st New York Volunteer Infantry Mifflin Guard will set up a Civil War encampment. Its members will also participate in a 19th century baseball game played according to the 1845 rules of the Knickerbocker Baseball Club. Visitors can join old-fashioned games like marbles and wheelbarrow races, or tour the estate by steam car, carriage or hay wagon (included in the price of admission).
There will also be live bluegrass music, antique automobiles, a quilt raffle, an exhibit of steam-powered toys, and food, including special foods for children.
Admission is $9 for adults; $4 for children 14 and under. Use the museum's main entrance on state Route 141. For information, call (302) 658-2400, weekdays.
Heritage Weekend in W.Va.
The people of Hardy County, W.Va., welcome visitors to their annual Heritage Weekend from Friday through next Sunday. It will be a weekend of historic house tours, antiques, heritage craft shows, a wine tasting tour, and train rides through the South Branch Trough.
More than 20 historic homes and buildings will be open, ranging from manor homes of river valley plantations to log cabins, and some are still occupied by descendants of the original owners. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The cost is $5.
You can visit a country store, an 1800s country school house, and a rose garden with more than 230 varieties of roses. Actors dressed as McNeill's Rangers will set up camp in the Moorefield area and stage a Confederate raid on the train carrying passengers through the trough.
Historic homes and buildings will be open in the areas of Moorefield, Arkansaw, Lost River, Wardensville and Mathias, and these areas you will also find homemade food, craft demonstrations, games and exhibits and other events.
Apple butter making, a jousting tournament, muzzle loading rifle shoot, antique cars, and an antique auction are some of the other weekend attractions.
Headquarters for the event is the Hardy County Public Library on Main Street in Moorefield. For information, call (304) 538-6560.
Step back in time
To walk the streets of Old Town in Alexandria, Va., is to step back in time. Considered George Washington's home town, its streets are still lined with restored 18th and early 19th century private homes. The 52nd annual Tour of Homes on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. is an opportunity to visit some of them.
Tickets cost $15 and will be available on tour day at the Ramsay House, 221 King St., or in the Education Building of the Washington Street Methodist Church, 115 S. Washington St., where tea will be served from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Proceeds will benefit the Cancer Care Center at Alexandria Hospital. For information, call (703) 370-3604.
New Market Days
New Market Days celebrates the town's 19th century heritage with three days of festivities from Friday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Blacksmiths, weavers, candle makers, and roving musicians in period costume will help to create a 19th century atmosphere. At one end of town a Civil War group will set up camp and engage in firing demonstrations. Horse-drawn carriages will take passengers through the back streets and down Main Street, where more than 60 craftspeople will sell their wares.
A variety of performers from barbershop to bluegrass, square dancers and strolling minstrels will offer entertainment throughout the weekend and a wide assortment of food will be available.
New Market's more than 40 antique shops will be open all weekend. Admission is free. For information, call (301) 865-3926.
Fall Harvest Festival
Steppingstone Museum near Havre de Grace offers two days of fall fun during the annual Fall Harvest Festival Saturday and next Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.
Activities include scarecrow making, pumpkin painting, apple butter making, apple bobbing, and apple cider pressing, an apple pie contest, pony and hay rides and a petting zoo. Dancing and musical entertainment are scheduled both days, and there will be cooking and craft demonstrations and food for sale.
5) For information, call (410) 939-2299.
Hunting and Fishing Day