By Guest Blogger: Christina Crawford
Go outside to enjoy the crisp air
Walk around downtown Bethlehem to see fall foliage
Go on a haunted tour to celebrate Halloween
Run or walk a 5K
Decorate a pumpkin
Do a fall craft activity day
Spend time with friends and family
Learn fun facts about your town
Give thanks for Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites for maintaining 20 historic landmarks in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania!
It’s finally fall! The cool, crisp air is here, and soon the trees will come alive with fall foliage that displays an exuberant array of reds, oranges, yellows, and other rich colors.
Fall is full of wonderful things from apple picking to apples pies, pumpkin patches to Halloween, mums, Thanksgiving, and so much more!
Keep reading to find out all of HBMS’ favorite things to add to your fall bucket list!
Spooky Tours Around Town
Looking for a frightfully fun time this October? Get spooky and treat yourself to the Death & Dying Cemetery Tour, which explores God’s Acre, Bethlehem’s oldest cemetery.
Led by a guide dressed in traditional Moravian attire, this tour takes you through the 1741 Gemeinhaus, a National Historic Landmark.Enjoy the fall air and stroll through God’s Acre and hear the life stories of some of the people who lived in Bethlehem all those years ago!
Tours take place Friday – Sunday, October 1- November 12 at 5 pm, leaving from the Moravian Museum of Bethlehem at 66 W. Church Street, Bethlehem, PA 18018.
Fall Fun Fact 1: The 1741 Gemeinhaus is the oldest standing building in the city!
Fall Fun Fact 2: Did you know that Moravians played a specific hymn to announce death? They had a completely different attitude toward death than we do today. Moravians believed that they were going home to be united with their Savior.
Fall Fun Fact 3: All the headstones in God’s Acre cemetery are flat and similar in size to indicate all are equal in death.
Fall in Love with Running
What is another great thing about fall? Fall running!
And, the Turkey Trot 5K Run & Fun Walk is just around the corner! This race is a fun family event. It’s always a fun atmosphere; create your own fun costumes, bring the family and the dog and burn off all that turkey, stuffing, and pie from Thanksgiving! Humans don’t get all the fun – dress your furry friend in a fabulous costume and enter the Best Pet Costume Contest!
Family-Fun Farm Tours at Burnside Plantation
Get your pumpkin fix at Burnside Plantation! Pumpkin fun for all ages.
Join us at the Open Gate Farm Tour for:
- Free guided tours of the Burnside House & Barn
- Pumpkin painting
- Delicious colonial cooking demonstrations
- Kids’ crafts & games
- Learn about what lives in the Monocacy from Monocacy Creek Watershed Association (MCWA) members
- Check out MCWA’s Enviroscape, an interactive model that allows people to better understand the sources and prevention of water pollution
When: Sunday, October 15 from 1-4 pm
Where: Burnside Plantation, 1461 Schoenersville Road, Bethlehem
Fall Fun Fact 4: Burnside Plantation was established in 1748 as the first privately owned home of the Bethlehem Moravians, James and Mary Burnside.
Fall Fun Fact 5: Burnside Plantation features one of only two operating horse-powered wheels in the country.
Dare To Be Gilded? You Won’t Be The Only One Going All Out This October!
HBMS is going glam and breaking out all of our most opulent and ornate artifacts from our vault! Explore this dazzling world of brilliant craftsmanship and luxury items, including: Bohemian gold enameled glassware, sterling silver tableware, mercury glass, Count Zinzendorf’s crystal cuff links, pieces from Annie Kemerer’s collection gold etched glass, 19th Century gold Tiffany & Co. purse with original receipt, and crafted jewelry and spoons by Bethlehem-based silversmiths…And that isn’t even everything there is to see!
Gilded runs from October 6, 2017– March 11, 2018. Here you will get an intimate look at how the concept of luxury has evolved over time at the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts, Moravian Museum, and 1810 Goundie House!
Plus, be the first to see Historic Bethlehem’s most glamorous and shiny collection objects at the Gilded Opening Reception on Thursday, October 5. Then, hear from Local Spotlight Artist Sergei Yaralov and discover his artistic process for creating brilliant paintings while enjoying some wine and light refreshments. Space is limited! Reserve your spot today!At the Moravian Museum of Bethlehem, Encounter the impressive gilded artifacts from Moravian families. Here is where you’ll see the crystal cufflinks of Count Zinzendorf and a recently donated hand-painted tea set that has been passed down through generations of a notable Moravian family.
At the Goundie House, step into the studio of silversmith J. Carroll Tobias and view photographs of his studio, which has been located in the basement of the Goundie House for nearly decades. See all of his sketches, the jewelry he created, and learn about his connection to Mr. Goundie himself!
Ready to be gilded? You won’t want to miss the upcoming Gilded Events and Programs:
- Gilded Workshop Series: Paint & Sip – Thursday, January 18, 2018 from 6-8 pm at the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts (Inclement weather date: Thursday, February 22, 2018)
- Gilded Jewelry Trunk Show – Sunday, October 29 from 12-3 pm at the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts
- Gilded Workshop Series: Make Your Own Faux Mercury Glass – Thursday, November 9, 2017 from 6-8 pm at the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts
- Gilded Workshop Series: Gold Leaf Workshop – Thursday, February 8, 2018 from 6-8 pm at the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts
Fall Fun Fact 6: Count Nicholas Ludwig von Zinzendorf is the benefactor of the early Moravians
Fall Fun Fact 7: Bohemian glassware began in the Czech Republic in the 14th century, but it wasn’t until the 19th century the gold enamels were used on the colorful glassware. This enameling is what sparked the luxury and ideals of the time!
Fall Fun Fact 8: Kids will enjoy the enchantment of Gilded too! HBMS Kid’s Club is offering a program, “Gilded Picture Frames” where kids will use metallic gold embellishments to decorate their very own shiny picture frame to take home. Kids will get enchanted by the stories of gold frames and the magic of the artwork inside the frame.
When: Sunday, October 29 from 1-3 pm
Cost: FREE for members; Non-Members: $10 (Free for Kids (17 and under) with purchase of adult admission ticket.)
Fall Means Christmas Is Near!
Fall Fun Fact: In 1937, the Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce declared Bethlehem, PA as “Christmas City, USA.”
Okay. I know it may be a tad bit too early to mention the word Christmas but when you live in Christmas City, it’s hard not to mention Bethlehem and Christmas in the same sentence!
Here’s a sneak peek for this Christmas season at HBMS:
- Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides – There’s no better way to explore the sights and sounds of the season in downtown Bethlehem!
- Bethlehem By Night Bus Tours – If you prefer bus tours as opposed to carriage rides then you’re in luck. Guides in period attire will educate you about the Christmas history and traditions of Bethlehem.
- Trees of Historic Bethlehem – Explore gilded Christmas trees from around the world! View splendid decorations like ornate ornaments and pearl clusters on the trees.
- Holiday Wassail Open House – Join HBMS Friday, November 24, from 5-6:30 pm for the 2nd annual tree lighting ceremony at the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts. It’s a wonderful way to kick off the season!
- Live Advent Calendar – Join HBMS everyday from December 1-23 at 5:30 pm at the 1810 Goundie House for this 11th annual tradition.
- And it wouldn’t be Christmas at Historic Bethlehem without Moravian sugar cookies and Christmas kiffles! Ordering details coming soon!
- Don’t forget to check out all the fun activities for kids too with HBMS Kid’s Club!
Don’t miss celebrating the season with HBMS where Christmas comes to life in our town of Bethlehem. You will see why we are Christmas City, U.S.A. We have everything from horse-drawn carriage rides to Trees of Historic Bethlehem – Gilded Christmas trees from around the world.
Keep checking out the website for more details as the holiday season approaches!
Turning tongues blue for 31 years at the Blueberry Festival!
Soak up the sun during the Sweetest Festival of the Summer
on Saturday, July 15 from 10am to 7pm and Sunday, July 16 from 10am to 6pm at Burnside Plantation.
Enjoy all things blueberry at this two-day festival with family, friends, and furry companions!
1: Turn Your Tongue Blue
Calling all food lovers!
Satisfy your sweet tooth with blueberry pie from Tombler’s Bakery, blueberry coffee cake and strudel from Bakery Nook,
and ice cream from The Cup made especially for the festival!
Stuff your face at the Dessert Tent or if you’re feeling competitive, sign up for the pie-eating contest. Be sure to stop by our gift shop at the festival for blueberry must-haves! Blueberry Foster, Ketchup, Mustard, and Vinaigrette.
Pre-Order your desserts by Friday, July 14 at 3pm and, have your blueberry sweets guaranteed waiting for you at the festival!
2: Step inside the Blueberry Brewery
Sample craft beer, mead, wine, and vodka produced in Bethlehem’s own backyard!
New to 2017 are Blueberry Moscow Mules from 8 Oaks, beer from Sly Fox, and wine from Boyds Cardinal Hollow Winery! Sip on Fegley’s Blueberry Blech, Colony Meadery’s Lemon Laws, Hijinxx craft brews, and many others that are back by popular demand!
Check Mate! Lawn Games are new to 2017! Enjoy the summer sun while playing chess on a 4ft board, cornhole, kam jamz, and kub!
3: Culinary Demonstrations
Looking for a new recipe for your next summer BBQ?
Culinary demonstrations from Fresh Fruit Tart to Cucumber/Blueberry Salad with Grilled Chicken to Blueberry Salsa will teach you how to make these mouthwatering treats – perfect for every summer get together!
Check out WFMZ for Historic Bethlehem’s Demonstration of Summer Lemon Bark to Celebrate Blueberry Festival!
4: Award-Winning Music
Bust a move with these fantastic local musicians and performers!
Don’t miss seeing new performers such as Copper Fields, The Wild Hymns, Peter Johann Band, and David Fields! Returning by popular demand, Rose Ostrowski, James Supra Duo, Hector Rosado, Magnolia Sadies, 99 Stringz, and Project 3^2.
5: Seeing is Believing!
From cooking to dogs to blacksmithing to brewing demonstrations, we have it all!
- Lehigh Valley Dreamweaver Dog Agility: Bring your furry friends to the Dog Agility demonstrations to see if they can pick up a few tricks!
- Live Animal Presentation: Did you know that animals love blueberries as much as people do? Find out which animals from Wildlands Conservancy!
- Blacksmithing: See how colonials forged intricate hooks, door hinges, and more!
- Colonial Cooking: “Spicing It Up the Colonial Way”
- Regional Crafters
- Colonial Brewing: With Craig Larimer, The Morning Call’s new Craft Beer Columnist!
6: Pawtastic Pet Parade
What could make the Blueberry Festival even sweeter? Dressing up your pup in a sweet costume for the Pet Parade on Sunday, July 16 at 3pm! The pet with the best costume will win a gift basket with great prizes inside like a gift card for Doggy Dao & Cat’s Meow.
7: Family Fun in the Sun
Pie-eating contests, kids’ crafts, and a petting zoo – Oh My!
Enjoy a fun-filled day with the entire family! Pie-eating contests for family members of all ages to compete! But that’s not all, there are activities for everyone.
Kick off your May and celebrate Bethlehem with Community Heritage Day, this Saturday, May 6 from 10 am – 4 pm at the Colonial Industrial Quarter – Rain or shine! Discover what it was like to be a colonial blacksmith, how the early Moravians built strong buildings out of stone, what some colonial dishes tasted like, and more!
This FREE family-fun event will be jam packed with live demonstrations from Wildlands Conservancy, HBMS blacksmiths, open-hearth colonial cooking from HBMS Foodways Group, hairwork artists, hands-on construction activities and colonial games, as well as tours of the 1762 Waterworks.
Get a Bird’s Eye View of the Colonial Industrial Quarter
Experience a Live Bird Presentation by the Wildlands Conservancy. Learn everything you wanted to know about the different, fascinating birds who call the Lehigh Valley their home from these nature experts! Live-bird presentations will include red-tail hawks, turkey vultures, owls, and pigeons and starts at 11 am and 2 pm.
Take a Walk on the Wild Side
Hike with a naturalist from Wildlands Conservancy. Find out how to identify birds, birds’ nests or cavities, food sources, and other signs of bird activity. Plus, receive a free “hiking pack” with binoculars and other supplies! Hikes will begin at 12 and 3 pm.
What Was It Like to Be a Colonial Blacksmith?
Hear the fire roar, see sparks fly, and the anvil ring at the 1750 Smithy! Learn from our professional blacksmiths how colonial blacksmiths made the intricate hinges, door handles, hooks, and decorative objects you see everywhere in Historic Moravian Bethlehem!
Follow the smells to our open hearth and learn delicious colonial recipes from the Historic Bethlehem Foodways Group as they illustrate different open-hearth cooking methods. Yum!
See Hairwork Done Today!
Watch Susan Newquist of Red-Tail Designs use horsehair to create custom jewelry! This local artist and equine aficionado will demonstrate how she weaves handcrafted accessories using the hair from a horse’s tail or mane as her primary material. It is unlike anything we’ve ever seen!
See Lucy Cadwallader demonstrate the art of Victorian hair jewelry using human or horse hair! This self-taught artist has been making hair jewelry for 18 years, so she knows her stuff. Discover how she creates handcrafted jewelry and mementos from loved ones’ hair. She is a true hair art lover.
Flashback to the Past
Laugh and reminisce at the various hairstyles sported by Bethlehem residents with this black & white photograph collection of residents’ hairstyles throughout history from the Bethlehem Steel Photo Collection.
Be Wowed by the 1762 Waterworks in Action
Did you know that the 1762 waterwheel is 18 ft. in diameter, that’s the size of three 6-foot tall men standing one on top of each other! This National Historic Landmark helped pump spring water 92 vertical feet to a tower, and then by gravity provided water to five locations!
Can You Master These Colonial Favorites?
Try your hand at the Buzzsaw, Bucket Brigades, Hoops, Graces, Jacob’s Ladder and more! Watch out, things might get a little competitive!
Create one-of-a-kind designs to take home with you at our tin-punching station on the 2nd floor of the Smithy. Kids and adults will love practicing this colonial trade while learning more about the tin smiths.
Learn interesting facts about the Monocacy Valley on our Heritage Trail. Stroll along the creek that brought Burnside Plantation, Illick’s Mill, and the Colonial Industrial Quarter to life!
What new mystery do amateur sleuths Mitzi & Adele uncover?
Find out in The Moravian Sugar Cake Mysteries, the newest book in the Old Bethlehem Mysteries Series! Co-author and President of Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites Charlene Donchez Mowers will be signing books, so don’t miss out!
Don’t miss out on these other fun activities:
- Hear musical performances by 99 Stringz! This acoustic trio will play largely traditional songs with two- and three-part harmonies and instrumental jigs, reels, and waltzes from 10am – 1pm outside of the Luckenbach Mill!
- Head over to Historic Hotel Bethlehem for Hotel History Tours every hour on the hour.
- Stop by Franklin Hills Vineyards’ Bethlehem Location for samples of their cider.
- Head into the Moravian Book Shop in Bethlehem for a spot of Moravian Tea.
A Look into Historic Bethlehem’s Newest Exhibition
Did you know that human hair used to be a treasured commodity that was bought and sold, imported from around the world, and used for jewelry and home décor? In 19th and early 20th century England and America, it was common for people to save the hair of friends or loved ones and transform it into wearable tokens of affection or framed ornaments for the home.
The craft of creating unique jewelry and art using human hair as the principal material is called “Hairwork.” It’s an ancient tradition, but took root in a big way in 1700s Scandinavia, then spread through Europe, England, and the U.S. By the 19th century making hairwork items at home was all the rage among Victorian ladies!
Love is in the Hair
I know what you’re thinking – why hair? Well, the Victorians were sentimental souls who loved to save reminders of the past, and hair was the perfect souvenir of a child, a friend, or someone who had passed away. In fact, hair made a nearly indestructible physical token that could be worn or displayed as a memento, something like the way we use photographs today.
Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow
Because war, illness, and poor sanitation made life expectancy far shorter than in today’s world, the Victorians were often in mourning and treasured a hairwork ring or brooch as a memorial. It may seem a bit morbid today, but back then they took comfort in knowing that at least one small part of a loved one would always be with them.
The hair of a loved one was also woven into framed mourning scenes. Sometimes hair from all the members of a family were combined to create intricate wired flowers and leaves, then combined into wreaths, horseshoes or bouquets for shadow box displays!
Before it could be used, hair was carefully prepared and combined into “strands” which could be braided into intricate miniature chain designs, wrapped around wire, or attached to small or large backings. In the 1850s, women could find inspiration in Godey’s Ladies Book, and other magazines of the time. In 1875, Mark Campbell published more than 100 patterns in “The Art of Hair Work: Hair Braiding and Jewelry of Sentiment.”
By 1900, hairwork was so popular, tons of hair were imported every year from around the world to meet the demand. Just imagine! What we leave on the hairdresser’s floor today would have been worth real money to its owner during the Victorian Era.
Love for Sale
Victorian hairwork pieces are still available today in antique shops and online auctions. Plus, some artists are reviving, adapting, and drawing inspiration from the craft. Local contemporary artist Rebecca Reeves uses Victorian hairwreaths as a muse for her art! Reeves cocoons miniature furniture with thread in order to contain and preserve, like in her piece above entitled, Gathering My Ghosts.
See & Experience Hairwork For Yourself!
Don’t miss these fascinating programs:
- Pet Hair Felting Workshop, Thursday, March 30 from 6 – 8 pm, where you will craft unique felt miniatures of your pets using their hair led by local artist Diane Hutchinson.
- Horsehair Jewelry Demonstration, Saturday May 6 from 10 am – 4 pm, see local jewelry artist Susan Newquist demonstrate how she creates such intricate necklaces, bracelets, and other adornments from horsehair at our Community Heritage Day.
- Victorian Hair Art Workshop, Saturday, June 17 from 2 – 5 pm, where you will design and create your own hairwork jewelry with this contemporary technique taught by Master Jeweler Karen Bachmann!
- Hair Fashion Show, Thursday, August 24 from 6 – 9 pm, a trendsetting evening that will blow your hair back with its breathtaking blend of inspiring contemporary hairstyles and elegant Victorian-Era outfits. Watch models showcase this marvelous mix on the Kemerer catwalk!
Discover more about this amazing craft at HairWork: Relics of Remembrance, an exhibition displaying more than 130 examples of Victorian hairwork at the Kemerer and Moravian museums from March 16 to Sept. 3.
Calling all pet lovers! This summer Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites is going to the dogs!
Jon us for our Dog Days of Summer, packed with pet and family-fun activities, exhibits, merchandise, and more. From our Creature Companions exhibit, to Pet Adoption Days, Kid’s Clubs activities, and more, our Dog Days of Summer will show you a barkin’ good time.
July 15 – October 30, 2016
Flashback through time and see pet painted portraits, photographs, home décor, and more spanning across a century at Creature Companions at Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts.
Explore how animal roles in Bethlehem have changed… or stayed the same!
Enjoy the petite pets and miniature animal scenes from the Elizabeth Johnston Prime Dollhouse Collection. Find unique antiques from an inscribed copy of Margaret Marshall Saunder’s “Beautiful Joe” to a Steiff Jointed Bulldog.
Check out the fun pet-themed work by our featured artists Lauren Beauchner and Andrew Frank Baer. Love their work? Purchase Baer’s paneled pet prints at our museum store or commission a pet portrait from Beauchner!
Don’t wait! See the Creatures Companions exhibit today. Click here for more information.
Pet Adoption Days
Tails are wagging in anticipation for our next Pet Adoption Day. Come say hello to these cute, furry faces in need of a loving home! Find your new best friend through Logan’s Heroes Animal Rescue and the Center for Animal Health and Welfare.
Click here to RSVP.
Kids will create their perfect pet with our No-Sew Sock Creature Activity with an upcycled sock, colorful felt, and stuffing (no needles and thread necessary). Use your creative imagination to bring your creatures to life!
Visit the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts on Saturday, August 27 from 11 am – 2 pm. Click here for more information.
Pet Merchandise Extravaganza
Bring all the wonderful Creature Companions memories home with you by purchasing these charming pet-themed wares. Great as gifts for friends, family, or yourself!
From colorful pig totes to ceramic mouse cheese platters to yummy dog treats, this collection contains items for every animal lover! Call our Visitor Center Museum Store at 1-800-360-TOUR or order cat pins online here.
Looking for a sweet way to spend two beautiful summer days in July? Join us for the Blueberry Festival, “The Sweetest Festival of the Summer,” on Saturday, July 16, 10 am to 7 pm and Sunday, July 17, 10 am to 6 pm at the Burnside Plantation. Jam packed with great family-fun activities, fantastic regional crafters and artisans, and all things blueberry, this festival has something for everyone.
# 1 Reason: The Food
Blueberries, nature’s fruit, are sweet, colorful, and incredibly healthy for you. They are filled with Vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants, proving that good things do come in small packages. “The Sweetest Festival of the Summer” will have all things blueberry to taste and expand your culinary palate: blueberry almonds, kiffels, pierogis, ice cream, pie, gluten-free treats, and so much more.
Do you have a great blueberry recipe? Enter the 2nd annual Blueberry Festival cooking contest. We’re looking for 2016’s Best Recipes for Gluten Free Blueberry Bars or Cookies, Blueberry Pie with Crumb Topping, Double Crust Blueberry Pie, No Bake Dessert, Blueberry Muffin, and Kids under 15 category. Prizes will be awarded for each category. The registration deadline is July 13, register here.
Enter our pie eating contests being held Saturday and Sunday, July 16-17, 2:15 pm at the community stage. Not ready to dig in? Stop by and cheer on the contestants.
Not only are blueberries are the perfect sweet ingredient for food, they make the most refreshing drinks.
# 2 Reason: The Drinks
We don’t stop experimenting with blueberry food recipes. The fun continues with blueberry-themed drinks. Our Blueberry Brewery keeps expanding with new recipes. Start off with sampling blueberry beer, wine, mead, and new this year vodka. After you find a favorite drink, grab a glass, listen to the live music, and enjoy.
# 3 Reason: Live music
Listening to music is a proven stress reliever, and what better place to relax than the Blueberry Festival. Get ready for sounds as versatile as our selection of blueberry dessert. More than 15 bands will be spread across the Blueberry Brewery Stage and the Community Stage both days. Tune in for Latin jazz, soulful blues, rock, country, and more while snacking on blueberry treats. Check these award-winning artists like folk singer Dave Fry, named “Best Folk Performer” in the Lehigh Valley Music Awards and “Bethlehem Fine Arts Artist of the Year,” or new-comer country singer Erin Kelly, winner of the Lehigh Valley Music Award’s “Best Album of the Year” for 2016. Folk-rock group Dina Hall Band has won “Best Singer/ Songwriter” at the Lehigh Valley Music Awards.
# 4 Reason: Kid and Pet Friendly Activities
Now the whole family can participate in the fun with activities for kids and our furry friends. Kids can go on pony rides, visit the petting zoo, make a pet bandana craft, compete in pie eating contests, and enter their own recipe in a cook-off.
Pets can join in the fun with Blueberry Festival’s first Pet Parade on Sunday, July 17 at 4 pm. Bring your furry friend dressed in anything blue. The best costume will win a prize. Register here to join the fun.
Looking for a furry member of the family? Meet your new best friend at Pet Adoption Day Saturday from 11 am to 4 pm. Logan’s Heroes Animal Rescue and Tails of Valor will bring dogs in need of a loving home.
And the # 5 Reason: Nature
Are you one with nature? The Burnside Plantation is a perfect venue for an outdoor festival. Burnside Plantation’s 6.5 acres of greenery adds another hue to complement the festival’s shades of blue. Just a quick drive away from the hubbub of Allentown, Philadelphia, New Jersey, or New York, come out and enjoy Burnside’s relaxing atmosphere, a stroll through the colonial summer garden in full bloom, and all the fun and excitement the Blueberry Festival has to offer. If you have a green thumb, consider adopting a garden plot to grow produce for the community. Learn more here.
Come check the Blueberry Festival out- it’s really the “Sweetest Festival of the Summer!”
For more information, click here.