On February 3rd-5th, history comes to life at the annual The Townsend's Plantation Civil War Festival & Living History Event on over 100 acres of Renninger's Antique and Flea Market property in Mt. Dora, FL. This event brings with it an opportunity for hands-on learning and visitors to engage in the Civil War era. There is something for everyone!
The weekend's event features educational opportunities, living history exhibits, foot tapping folk music, artillery demonstrations, stroll through the authentic camps, and talk with time-period dressed soldiers. On Saturday night, 8PM, attend the Civil War era Dress Ball.
Friday is open for the "School Day", which is not open to the public. A couple hundred local students take a step back in time. See below if you would like to have your school participate.
Re-enactors spend the day talking with students through living history exhibits. They learned about the field hospitals and medical procedures for the soldiers. When I asked the Caporaso family what the learned that day, two of them responded that in the field, an amputation could be done in 15 minutes.
The re-enactor's weekend living quarters are set up as an authentic campsites. Visitors can mingle and talk with soldiers as they prepare their evening stew.
Re-enactor Melissa Oponte, shares her experience as a family. She is joined by her 4 children, sister and her baby, and their mother. It is a family affair. They go about their day mending clothes, preparing lunch on the fire, and tending to household chores.
The local teacher shares how different schooling was during the time period. Students would practice with a slate stick and board. She also explains that there were only a few books available per school house and the students would have to be share.
Of course there are military and artillery demonstrations happening throughout the day. Saturday and Sunday at 2PM, is the Townsend's Plantation Battle reenactment with fully authentic troops, horse riders, and cannons firing.
The Civil War Festival has something for all ages and interests. When people have an opportunity to watch and talk with re-enactors, they learn more than they would in any classroom. Be sure to check out this event, you will not be disappointed.
Event Information & Schedule
Admission: $6.00 Adults and $4.00 Children 12 and under. FREE PARKING
Friday February 3rd - School Day CLOSED TO PUBLIC. Friday is School Days and will be open to registered schools / classes only. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 407-701-8700
Saturday February 3rd & Sunday February 4th - Open 10am - 5pm. Battles are at 2pm each day.
Full Detailed Daily Schedule: battle_schedule_2017r1