School groups are invited to visit the site from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Friday, to enjoy the holiday decorations and watch as a period meal is prepared by costumed staff in the outdoor kitchen of Oakley House. In addition, various hands-on craft demonstrations will be located throughout the park. All schools wishing to participate in this special program must pre-register with the site.
From 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday, visitors can see a plantation Christmas dinner setting and rooms decorated for the holiday season. The plantation kitchen will feature the day’s meal being prepared over an open hearth and costumed staff will explain how the holiday celebration differed from what is traditional in modern times. As an added feature, candlelight tours of Oakley House will be given from 6 to 8 p.m. During the tour there will be live colonial music and traditional holiday snacks such as roasted chestnuts, fig puddings and wassail will be served.
Also, on Saturday, Dec. 6, the Zachary High School Jazz Choir will perform at 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. and the Vintage Dancers will perform dances of the early 1800s.
“Living history events, such as these, bring to life peaceful and nostalgic periods of our state’s history and give visitors a glimpse of that bygone era,” says John House, site manager.
Audubon SHS is the setting for the 200-year-old Oakley House, temporary home and inspiration to John James Audubon in the 1821. The park includes a museum, picnic areas, historic buildings and a nature trail. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973, Oakley House and its lush natural settings are open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Day. The $2 adult admission to Audubon SHS includes the site video history presentation, the plantation house tour and all special programs. Children (12 and under) and senior citizens (62 and older) are admitted free. Audubon SHS is located 30 minutes north of Baton Rouge near St. Francisville on La. 965 in West F eliciana Parish. For more information, call 1-888-677-2838 toll free or 635-3739 when in the St. Francisville area.