Feast of the Strawberry Moon to demonstrate fur trading era

Organizers of this year's Feast of the Strawberry Moon are expecting the re-enactment to be one of the largest ever, with more than 250 participants and volunteers all portraying the life and times of the fur trade period of the late 1760s. "People will enjoy the event this year as much as they've enjoyed it before,' Tri-Cities Historical Museum Executive Director Dennis Swartout said of the event, which takes place this Saturday and Sunday on Harbor Island. According to Swartout, organizers are working to make the event as authentic as possible.
Alex Doty
Jun 8, 2011


“When they walk through the front entrance, we want them to feel like they are back in time,” Swartout said.

Once inside, visitors will find more than 60 camp sites, including returning re-enactors such as the spoon monger and blacksmith, the shepherd and his dogs doing demonstrations.

“The most important thing is the re-enactors themselves,” Swartout said. “Without them, we don’t have an event.”

New participants will also be featured, including Dennis Massie, 18th century re-enactor and digital design and ceramics instructor for the Benton Intermediate School District in Indiana, who will be demonstrating using a kick wheel during this year’s feast.

Julie Sarge, 18th century re-enactor, is another new participant who will portray Bless Atwater, an indigenous healer. Sarge will talk abut the different ways that healers could adjust fluids to aid in healing the sick.

In addition, a candy cannon by Seven Year’s War military group; candle making, 18th century kids’ games, and the tomahawk throw will again be a part of the event.

“Each year we are fortunate to have new people, events, and activities added to our event lineup that serves to make the feast something that brings visitors back year after year,” Swartout said.

Along with the new and returning re-enactors, a new tavern has been added that will serve beer and wine to visitors 21 and older.

“This idea stemmed from a visit to a re-enactment in Indiana last year, and following the proper application process and approvals, we are going to try this on a trial basis,” Swartout said. “The feast remains a family-friendly event and we don’t feel this will take away from that; those who wish to have a cold one on a hot summer day will be able to do so.”

The Feast of the Strawberry Moon takes place on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Harbor Island.

Cost is $3.50 per person or $12.50 per family. Visitors will can park free on Harbor Island adjacent to the re-enactment site

For more information, call the Tri-Cities Historical Museum at 842-0700 or visit the web site at www.tri-citiesmuseum.org.


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