By 1812Blockhouse

The aroma of open hearth cooking, the clanging of a blacksmith’s hammer, and the crackle of musket fire: are among the sights, sounds, and smells that will transport visitors back in time during the 2nd Annual Colonial Days this weekend at South Park in Mansfield. Hosted by the Richland Early American Center for History, the event is a journey into the 18th and 19th centuries.

Colonial Days is a unique two-day event featuring living historical reenactments, hands-on activities, and informative talks that promise to engage both the young and the young at heart. From blacksmithing to traditional games, visitors will have a chance to immerse themselves in the historical crafts and trades that shaped the early American experience.

Saturday kicks off with an opening ceremony featuring a blockhouse flag-raising event and a musket-firing demonstration, sure to captivate the audience. Between the scheduled activities, visitors can enjoy the convenience of a food truck on-site, offering a modern twist on the historical theme.

Saturday’s program offers an array of fascinating talks. At 11 AM, dance historian Erin Ekin will delve into the history of 18th-century dance, followed by a musket demonstration at 1 PM. Then at 1:30 PM Laura Supinger will present an intriguing exploration of 18th-century women’s roles in her talk, “Out from the Hearth”. This discussion will touch on a variety of topics, including education, laws, and the many jobs these women held, drawing parallels to the present day.

Later in the afternoon, Chay Gordon will present a thought-provoking talk on the ideals of beauty and fat phobias, tracing their evolution through the 18th and 19th centuries, with a special focus on their impact in the enslaved and African American communities.

Sunday will bring another day of discovery, with activities ranging from musket demonstrations to 18th-century cooking demonstrations.

In addition to the scheduled programs, the event will feature ongoing attractions such as civilian and military reenactments, children’s activities, and 18th-century blanket traders. Whether it’s the fun of playing traditional games or the excitement of watching a blacksmith at work, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Free admission and parking make Colonial Days an accessible event for the whole family, offering a chance for everyone to journey back in time and experience early American life in a fun and engaging way.

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