Conococheague Institute will host their 18th Century Open Grounds Day and celebrate the end of summer, Colonial Style during a FREE event on Saturday, September 5th from 10am until 4pm. Located in Mercersburg at 12995 Bain Rd., the Celebration of Summers Past is an event for all ages bringing birds, balls and botany to all to enjoy as you take a step back in time!

At 11am tour the grounds and take a walk through “natural history” with a colonial guide and spot your favorite aves during a Birding Walk. Discover Flickers, Herons, Bald Eagles, Peacocks and perhaps other surprise feathered friends might show up along the way!

Beginning at 1pm it’s game time! Balls – Colonial games with a colonial guide will take place with some of the favorite items and games enjoyed by many in the Colonial era. You’ll have a chance to play with simple wooden toys and games of Cricket just as our Colonia ancestors once did!

The 3pm hour event goers can enjoy one of nature’s most beautiful delights on showcase with Botanical Marvels in the Garden. As Summer’s end is near, the garden will too. This is your opportunity to learn about all the plants grown in Colonial American Colonies with a tie back to some household favorites still used today. Learn about medicinal herbs and cooking herbs and some that had a bit of a strange use too! You’ll get a chance to see a 4 square kitchen garden inspired by our early German inhabitants!

As the day carries on, guests of the celebration can enjoy living history activities throughout the historic structures with demonstrations ranging from hearth cooking to handcrafts. You will get a glimpse into history as you explore the cabin, tavern and gardens reminiscent of Colonial times.

The Conococheague Institute is open from dusk to dawn for visitors to take a step back in time with free self-guided tours to enjoy the beautifully, preserved ground including nature trails, a 1700ft Cemetery walk, exhibit and artifact collections, the Conococheague Institute library, archaeology, architectural history and a gift shop featuring Colonial-style toys, local history books, frontier-inspired items and local handicrafts. Pets are welcome and guided tours can be arranged for groups in advance.

To learn more about the event, Celebration of Summers Past or to plan your visit and learn more about how you can take a walk back in time click here.

Submitted by Lauren Formosa