His­toric Hol­i­day House Tour re­turns, will ben­e­fit July 4th fes­tiv­i­ties

The Southern Berks News - - LOCAL NEWS - By Evan Brandt [email protected]­tu­ry­media.com @PottstownNews on Twit­ter

This is a whole new twist on Christ­mas in July. How does July 4th at Christ­mas time strike you?

The His­toric Hol­i­day House Tour will re­turn to Pottstown Sun­day, Dec. 9, from 1 to 5 p.m. but in ad­di­tion to of­fer­ing a de­light­ful look at the in­te­rior of 21 of the bor­ough’s land­mark his­toric build­ings, pro­ceeds from the tour will also help to fund fire­works and other GoFourth fes­tiv­i­ties on July 4th.

As in pre­vi­ous years, the tour will co­in­cide with Potts­grove Manor’s an­nual Potts­grove Manor by Can­dle­light event, that will fea­ture a can­dle­light tour of the man­sion as cos­tumed in­ter­preters por­tray its colo­nial res­i­dents as they cel­e­brate Twelfth Night.

A trol­ley, spon­sored by VIST Bank and Pottstown Area Rapid Tran­sit, will shut­tle tour go­ers be­tween the an­ces­tral home of Pottstown founder John Potts, to other stun­ning ar­chi­tec­tural treasures such as the The Elks Club on High Street, The Hill School’s Vic­to­rian-style Class of 1960 Alumni House at 715 E. High St., the Me­mo­rial Room of the John P. Ryan Li­brary and the Ro­manesque-Gothic style Alumni Chapel and nu­mer­ous homes show­cas­ing lov­ingly pre­served ar­chi­tec­ture rang­ing from Fed­eral to Re­vival to Queen Ann Vic­to­rian styles.

Vis­i­tors can take the trol­ley shut­tle, walk or drive. Trol­ley ser­vice to Potts­grove Manor ends at 4:15 p.m.

Tick­ets are $15 in ad­vance, or $20 the day of the tour.

They can be pur­chased at www.PottstownGoFourth.com/hol­i­day­house­tour; Mon­day through Sun­day and the day of the event at Stu­dio 36, 105 E. High St., Pottstown; or Mon­day through Fri­day at Carter’s Lock­smith, 127 N. Hanover St.

Tick­ets that are pur­chased on­line should be picked up the day of the event at Stu­dio 36; please bring a proof of pur­chase.

Tour maps will be pro­vided the day of the tours in ex­change for pur­chased tick­ets at the fol­low­ing times and lo­ca­tions only: Noon – 4 p.m. at Stu­dio 36, 105 E. High St.; 1-3 p.m. at The Elks Club, 61 E. High St.; or 3-5 p.m. at St. Aloy­sius Church’s Gath­er­ing Cen­ter at Hanover and Beech streets.

This year’s tour in­cludes the Doe Club Tea, from 1 to 3 p.m. at The Elks Club, 61 E. High St., which fea­tures beau­ti­ful stained glass and wood­work, and a cook­ies

and punch so­cial from 3 to 5 p.m. at Saint Aloy­sius Church, 223 Beech Street.

In ad­di­tion, Edge­wood His­toric Ceme­tery, 106 Edge­wood St. (along High be­tween Edge­wood and Keim streets), which re­cently ben­e­fit­ted from a com­mu­nity clean-up en­deavor, will dec­o­rate its iron fence with fresh greens and wreaths and line the paths with lu­mi­nar­ies. The spruced-up ceme­tery of­fice build­ing will be a stop for hot choco­late, and ex­pect some car­ol­ers to pro­vide hol­i­day mu­sic dur­ing your stop.

Other stops in­clude sev­eral other his­toric churches; the Potts Ceme­tery at 226230 Chest­nut St.

Please note that tours of Hill’s chapel will end at 4:30 p.m., when a short or­gan recital will be per­formed, fol­lowed by the 5 p.m. “Les­sons and Car­ols” ser­vice pre­sented by Hill and Pottstown com­mu­nity vo­cal­ists and read­ers.

The pub­lic is cor­dially in­vited to the or­gan pre­lude and ser­vice but the par­tic­i­pat­ing choirs and clergy ask that guests come and stay for the ser­vice, rather than en­ter­ing and/or leav­ing dur­ing this event.

As the last trol­ley ride from The Hill School Cam­pus will leave at 5:15, friends who wish to at­tend the ser­vice are en­cour­aged to drive and park at the Cen­ter For The Arts, 760 Beech St.; a Hill Se­cu­rity driver will shut­tle guests to and from the Chapel and the two other Hill sites.

At Potts­grove Manor, vis­i­tors can en­joy sea­sonal fa­vorites such as the tan­ta­liz­ing desserts that are a sta­ple of Twelfth Night; cel­e­brate with the house­hold ser­vants and un­cover the tra­di­tions of Box­ing Day.

Or you can test your wit and mem­ory in the par­lor with games of the 18th cen­tury and find out if you can sing along with the his­toric mu­sic. Greet the fam­ily up­stairs and learn how they dressed and pre­pared for the party. Laugh along with the house­hold staff at their fes­tiv­i­ties in the Ser­vant Work Room and con­verse with those who are still work­ing late into the evening hours.

His­toric dishes will be made in the colo­nial re­pro­duc­tion kitchen by the ex­pert hearth cooks. Ev­ery­one can taste his­tory with was­sail and his­toric hot choco­late sam­ples along with colo­nial cook­ies at the end of the tour. Kids of all ages are in­vited to take a piece of the hol­i­day spirit home with a make-and-take craft.

The Mu­seum Shop will also be open, stocked with true bay­berry can­dles, kid’s toys, books for all ages, and more to bring some 18th cen­tury style to your hol­i­day shop­ping

This true com­mu­ni­ty­wide event is a great way to show­case the Bor­ough, raise funds for next July’s GoFourth! fes­tiv­i­ties.


The lobby area of the Elks Home on High Street will again be dec­o­rated for the hol­i­days and one of the stops on Pottstown’s His­toric Hol­i­day House tour Dec. 9.


His­tor­i­cal cook Deb­o­rah Peter­son helped pre­pare Colo­nial feasts at pre­vi­ous “Potts­grove Manor by Can­dle­light” tours.


The trap­pings of a Colo­nial-era English Christ­mas, com­plete with his­toric in­ter­preters, are part of the Dec. 9 tour at Potts­grove Manor.


The Pottstown Trol­ley, shown here leav­ing The Elks Club dur­ing pre­vi­ous year’s tours, will shut­tle vis­i­tors among 21 lo­ca­tions dur­ing this year’s His­toric Hol­i­day House Tour Dec. 9.

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