Free admission for veterans and active military
Old Fort Niagara will host its first re-enactment of the season, Patriots Day Weekend, on April 16-17, to commemorate the start of the American Revolution on April 19, 1775.
The weekend's educational and interactive activities are suitable for all ages, and everything is included with regular admission to the fort.
Patriots Day Weekend will also honor all U.S. military service people, who will be admitted free with proper ID. A special ceremony at 2 p.m. Saturday will award Patriots Day plaques to:
•Technical Sgt. John Joseph Kyle, World War II veteran, European Theatre (posthumously)
•Specialist 4 John Tully LaVarnway, a Vietnam War veteran
Re-enactors from Hoisington's New York Rangers, Brant's Volunteers, 64th Regiment of Foot, Fort McIntosh Garrison and Old Fort Niagara will portray colonial rebels, colonial loyalist and British Redcoats. They will present musket-firing and clothing demonstrations, 18th century military drills and be available to meet with visitors and answer questions.
Visitors will also be able to "enlist" as a rebel or loyalist and participate in mock battles using wooden muskets.
The daily schedule follows:
10 a.m. Assemble - Re-enactors will gather on the parade grounds
11 a.m. Recruiting demonstration - Children and parents are invited to "enlist" as rebels or loyalists
Noon - Storytelling about the battles of Lexington and Concord that started the American Revolution
1 p.m. - Clothing demonstration
2 p.m. Saturday - Patriots Day ceremony with plaques presented to veterans; musket firing
2 p.m. Sunday - Patriots Day honors, musket firing
Additionally, guided tours of Old Fort Niagara will be available Saturday and Sunday.
The cost to attend these events is regular admission to the fort ($12/adult, $8/child ages 6-12, free/children 5 and under) and is free to members of Old Fort Niagara. Veterans and active military service people will be admitted free with proper ID.
Old Fort Niagara's next re-enactment will be "Soldiers Through the Ages," May 28-29, which will present a military timeline of soldiers at the fort over three centuries.
Old Fort Niagara (www.oldfortniagara.org) is located in Fort Niagara State Park in Youngstown. It is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (admissions end at 4:30 p.m.). Old Fort Niagara is a Registered National Historic Landmark and New York State Historic Site operated by the Old Fort Niagara Association (a not-for-profit organization) in cooperation with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.