Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Old Fort Niagara Kicks Off Reenactment Season April 22-23

Patriots Day Weekend launches Old Fort Niagara's reenactment season with a salute to veterans and patriotism on April 22 and 23. The weekend's family-friendly, educational and interactive activities will enlighten visitors about the Battles of Lexington and Concord that began April 19, 1775, and started the American Revolution. The programs are suitable for all ages and everything is included with regular admission to the fort.

 Patriots Day Weekend will also honor all U.S. military service people, who will be admitted free with proper ID. A ceremony at 2 p.m. Saturday will award special plaques to:

British grenandier, Pierson Bell, of the
64th Regiment of Foot, encourages visitors
to remain loyal to the King of England
·         Stanley Hill Sagar, Sergeant, US Army, European Theatre, World War II (posthumously), also member of Brant’s Volunteers reenactment unit
·         William Irving Mayback, Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, WWII (posthumously)
·         Howard M. Ehrhardt, Jr., Specialist 4, U.S. Army, Vietnam War, also member of Brant’s Volunteers
·         Thomas R. Gielow, Jr., Specialist 4, U.S. Army, Vietnam War, also member of Brant’s Volunteers

 Volunteer reenactors from Hoisington's New York Rangers sponsor this annual event with the help of Brant's Volunteers, 64th Regiment of Foot, and Fort McIntosh Garrison, which are also volunteer reenactment units. They will portray Colonial Rebels, Colonial Loyalist and British Redcoats and present musket-firing and clothing demonstrations, 18th century military drills and be available to meet with visitors and answer questions. Visitors will also be able to "enlist" as a rebel or loyalist and participate in mock battles using wooden muskets.

The daily schedule follows:

10 a.m.            Assemble – Reenactors will gather on the parade grounds
11 a.m.            Recruiting Demonstration – Children and adults can "enlist" as rebels or
12 p.m.            Storytelling about the Battles of Lexington and Concord that started the
American Revolution
1 p.m.              Clothing Demonstration
2 p.m.              Saturday: Patriots Day Ceremony; and Musket Firing
2 p.m.              Sunday: Patriots Day Honors; and Musket Firing

Additionally, guided tours of Old Fort Niagara will be available both days.

The cost to attend these events is regular admission to the fort ($12/adult, $8/child ages 6-12, free/children 5 and under) and is free to members of Old Fort Niagara. Veterans and active military service people will be admitted free with proper ID.

Old Fort Niagara's next reenactment will be Soldiers through the Ages, May 27 and 28, which will present a military timeline of soldiers at the fort over three centuries.

Thomas Thompson,right, of Hoisington's New York Rangers
portrays an officer of the Continental Army and urges visitors
to rebel from British control and fight as patriots.
 Old Fort Niagara ( is located in Fort Niagara State Park in Youngstown, N.Y., which is 14 miles north of Niagara Falls via the Niagara Scenic Parkway North. The fort is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (admissions end at 4:30 p.m.). Old Fort Niagara is a Registered National Historic Landmark and New York State Historic Site operated by the Old Fort Niagara Association (a not-for-profit organization) in cooperation with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

Photos by Charlotte Clark