Old Fort Niagara announces a new season of sharing historic, authentic and engaging battle re-enactments, programs and performances for the enjoyment and education of the public that highlight nearly three centuries on the Niagara Frontier. From the French and Indian War Encampment, to the American Revolution, War of 1812, Civil War and World Wars I and II, Old Fort Niagara invites all to "Walk in the Footsteps of History" by visiting this National Historic Landmark and the oldest existing 18th-century buildings and fortifications in the Great Lakes region.
The community is encouraged to learn more about the new season at the fort's May 18 "Community Appreciation Night" (6 to 8 p.m.). Admission will be free for the event. Visitors will get a tour to orient them to the site, meet characters from the fort's past, and learn about the upcoming daily summer programming that will feature the American Revolution.
"We strive to inspire visitors every day at Old Fort Niagara by sharing authentic experiences that are part of our collective history," Old Fort Niagara Executive Director Robert Emerson said. "And we share more than just military history - we demonstrate how bread was baked; how iron was turned to steel for latches, handles, belts and brooches; how wood was shaped into furniture, barrels and doors; how Natives taught and traded with us; how women helped with domestic and military duties; and a lot more. Free admission should get you through the doors on May 18, but our programming should have you wanting to come back again and again."
Old Fort Niagara is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily through June, and from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. in July and August. Admissions end 30 minutes before closing. Regular admission to the fort is $12 per adult, $8 per child ages 6-12, free for children 5 and under, and free to members of Old Fort Niagara. Certain discount and group admissions apply. Visit www.oldfortniagara.org for details.
Old Fort Niagara's 2016 events
•May 28-29: re-enactment "Soldiers Through the Ages" - This military timeline traces the history of Fort Niagara from the 17th through the 20th centuries. It features special exhibits, camps, weapons and tactical demonstrations.
•June 11-12: re-enactment Civil War Garrison Weekend - Union soldiers bring the fort's Civil War garrison to life.
•July 2-4: re-enactment French and Indian War Encampment - Old Fort Niagara's biggest event of the year. Multi-day battles between the French and British; hundreds of re-enactors; sutlers selling handmade wares; French, British and Native camps; musket and cannon firings; period music; and trades demonstrations.
•July 6-Aug. 20: daily summer program American Revolution era at the fort - Daily programs highlight British presence at fort during the American Revolution; musket and cannon firings, field music and history interpretation.
•July 9-Oct. 10: lighthouse open the public (noon-3 p.m. daily) - Free admission for visitors; must be at least 4 feet tall and sign a waiver.
•July 23 performance by the Plymouth Fife and Drum Corps.
•July 31 performance by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.
•Aug. 13 and 14 re-enactment Soldiers of the American Revolution - Niagara Frontier life during the American Revolution, with period camps, musket and artillery demonstrations and military skirmishes.
•Sept. 3-4: re-enactment War of 1812 Encampment - Experience the surprise British attack on Fort Niagara that took place on Dec. 19, 1813. Tactical and weapons demonstrations from the War of 1812. Saturday night battle.
•Oct. 15 and 22: fundraiser "Haunted Fortress" - Seasonal, nocturnal tour filled with ghosts from the fort's past. Tickets will go on sale in September.
•Dec. 3 and 10: fundraiser "Castle by Candlelight" - Tour the French Castle illuminated by candlelight and decorated by the Youngstown Garden Club. Tickets available at the door.
Old Fort Niagara (www.oldfortniagara.org) is located in Fort Niagara State Park in Youngstown. It 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.