2013-08-08 / Community

Heritage Day at Fayette planned for Saturday

19th century games, activities for visitors

FAYETTE – Music, crafts, horse-drawn carriage rides, games and sporting activities popular during the 19th century will be featured at Fayette Historic State Park’s annual Heritage Day event on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The park is located on the Garden Peninsula, between Escanaba and Manistique.

This 19th-century-themed event will celebrate Fayette’s rich social and industrial heritage, crafts, music, and a variety of children’s games and sporting competitions from the era.

Special guests at the event include Michael Deren, who will take visitors on a musical and historical journey as a Great Lakes schooner captain from 1875. Also featured are Dodworth Duo Strolling Serenaders, who will be providing a concert and performances throughout the town site in the afternoon.

Archaeologist Stacy Tchorzynski will display artifacts from Fayette’s past that were excavated in a series of archaeological investigations in the town site and vicinity. “This is a great opportunity for the public to see some of the artifacts that have been unearthed by archaeologists at Fayette over the years,” said site historian Troy Henderson.

“Heritage Day offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy an authentic 19th-century-themed event, listen to music from the era, see a blacksmith operating a real forge or participate in children’s activities that kids enjoyed more than 100 years ago – all in a restored historic town site and pristine setting,” said Henderson.

Children’s games and activities will include three-legged and sack races, lawn croquet and reproduction toys from the era. Anyone 13 years and older is invited to play a game of old-time baseball with the Fayette team following 19thcentury rules, meaning no baseball gloves will be used, and a ball caught on the first bounce is an out.

Blacksmith George Potvin and the Friendship Quilters of Garden will be on hand throughout the day, demonstrating their skilled crafts. Heritage Day visitors can also enjoy a food tent sponsored by the Big Bay de Noc High School Booster Club and a bake sale.

The day’s scheduled activities include:

-11:30 a.m.: Dodworth Duo Strolling Serenaders concert

-12 to 3:30 p.m.: Dodworth Duo Strolling Serenaders performances throughout the townsite

-12:30 to 2:15 p.m.: Michael Deren, 1875 Great Lakes schooner captain

-3:30 p.m.: 1800s-style baseball, Fayette team vs. All Comers - ages 13 and up welcome to participate

Fayette Historic State Park features one of the nation’s premier examples of a 19th-century industrial community and company town. In operation from 1867- 1891, its furnaces produced more than 229,000 tons of pig iron, becoming the second largest producer of charcoal iron in Michigan. Today, 20 buildings are preserved, including the furnace complex, hotel, town hall, company office and several residences. Eleven buildings contain exhibits and are open to the public, including a modern visitor center with a scale model of the town site as it looked in the 1880s.

Fayette Historic Townsite is one of 11 nationally accredited museums administered by the Michigan Historical Center, an agency within the Department of Natural Resources. Located 17 miles south of U.S. Highway 2 on Highway 183 at Fayette Historic State Park, the museum village is open daily, 9 a.m. to dusk through Labor Day and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Labor Day through mid-October. For more information, call 906-644- 2603 or visit www.michigan.gov/ fayettetownsite.

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