Sunday, December 16, 2012

"Austenmas" News Roundup

Your Regional Coordinator writes: 

First, of course, a very happy "Austenmas" (as Syracuse/Rochester Co-RC Lisa Brown calls Jane Austen's birthday) to all Janeites everywhere! At 237, Our Author is going stronger than ever!

As noted in the preceding post, JASNA Syracuse Region members and JABC-CNY members gathered at the Colgate Inn on December 8 to celebrate Austenmas in particular and the winter holidays in general. After we toasted JA's birthday, Lisa Brown regaled us with a holly- and yew-trimmed presentation on Regency Christmas customs--including some holiday sports and games that would definitely not meet modern safety standards. (Nevertheless, someone has had the temerity to demonstrate the game of "Snap Dragon" on a YouTube video, and Lisa hopes to post a link to this shortly.)

The elegant cake above (with a frosting inkwell and both a frosting and an actual quill) was served at yesterday's JASNA Rochester birthday luncheon at the Chatterbox Club in Rochester.  Alice Villasenor's description of JA's niece Catherine Anne Hubback and of Hubback's career as a novelist was fascinating. Edith Lank led us as usual in Kipling's epigraph to "The Janeites" as a birthday toast to JA. The team of "Bake and Jake" (a/k/a Rochester's own Lindsay Warren Baker and Amanda Jacobs) gave us an update on the progress of their Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice: A Musical, and treated us to an impromptu performance of its newest song, Mr. Collins's hilarious paean to Lady Catherine. 

And on a much somberer but most salutary note, Rochester RC Celia Easton reminded us in her opening remarks of how necessary JA's six novels and other works are to us--as inspiration, not just as escapism--in the face of tragedies like the school shooting in Newtown, CT. We send our thoughts and prayers to all the residents of Newtown and of Connecticut, including our JASNA Connecticut colleagues. (On Dec. 8, I'd promised the Colgate Inn attendees to post a link to the website for JASNA Connecticut's upcoming "Jane Austen Summer Camp" on July 26-28, 2013. I'll do so in a future post.)

To quote from JA's correspondence with Cassandra, "[The rest of] This Letter is to be dedicated entirely to Good News." JASNA's annual Austenmas present to its members and the world is the publication of the winter issue of its electronic journal, Persuasions On-Line--and Upstate New York is well represented in the new number (go here for the link).  The paper based on my Brooklyn AGM breakout session about the Prince Regent is included in the section of papers from the AGM, and another meditation on Pride and Prejudice by our Rochester friend Leo Rockas (this time, a review of the similarities between P&P and the Juvenilia piece "The Three Sisters") is included in the Miscellany section.

Over at Jane Austen in Vermont, "Janeite Deb" (a/k/a JASNA Vermont RC Deb Barnum) has put up a long Austenmas post on "The Ten Best Reasons to Go to a JASNA AGM," in which she kindly includes my breakout under reason #6 and Lisa Brown's "Dressing the Miss Bennets" presentation under #9. Go here for the link. Thanks and cheers, Deb! (And, hey, I thought JA in Vermont was the best regional blog in JASNA even before she put up this post!)

Finally, as we look ahead to 2013, several local events are being planned to honor the 200th anniversary of the publication of Pride and Prejudice--JA's "own darling Child"--in late January 1813. See the updated "Events" column at right for three of these.  As you can see below, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, the Official Spokescat of JASNA Syracuse, is getting in the proper frame of mind by contemplating an Austenmas ornament filled with individual sentences from the novel. (The ornament is yet another creation of the multi-talented Lisa Brown!)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Slight Change in Christmas Meeting Plans; Rochester Birthday Lunch

First, there's a slight change to JASNA Syracuse's plans for a joint holiday gathering with the Colgate JABC-CNY at the Colgate Inn in Hamilton on Saturday, December 8: Instead of meeting at the Inn at noon for lunch, we will be gathering there for dessert at 1:00 pm. 

As the RSVPs for the 8th started to come in, we discovered that the Colgate Inn has a limit of 14 people for ordering individually from the Inn's lunch menu, and quite a few more than 14 people have expressed interest by now.  The alternative for lunch would have been a buffet that would cost $15 plus a gratuity per person.  But since there is no limit on the number who can order just dessert individually, the decision was made to go with the dessert option.  Lisa Brown will still be giving her presentation on Regency Christmas customs; we will still be raising a 237th birthday toast to Jane Austen; and, most definitely, we will still enjoy ourselves! So do plan to join us for dessert at 1:00 on the 8th.  If you haven't already done so, please give JABC leader Heather Elia an RSVP at this address by November 29, so that she can give the Inn a head count.

Also, a few of us Syracuse Region members always try to make the trip to Rochester for JASNA Rochester's annual JA birthday luncheon at the Chatterbox Club, 25 North Goodman St., Rochester.  This year's lunch will be on Saturday, Dec. 15, starting at 11:00 am.  Professor Alice Villasenor of Medaille College in Buffalo will be the speaker; she will describe her research on Catherine Hubback, a niece of Jane Austen's who wrote a completion of JA's unfinished novel The Watsons, as well as several other books.  Alice was a participant in the Young Scholars Panel at the recent JASNA AGM in Brooklyn.  If you'd like to attend, go to this link on JASNA Rochester's website and download the registration form from the link you'll find there. The cost of the luncheon will be $27.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

JASNA Syracuse/JABC-CNY Joint Christmas Meeting at Colgate Inn, Sat., Dec. 8

Your JASNA Syracuse Regional Coordinators and Jane Austen Book Club-CNY leader Heather Elia hope you'll mark your calendars now: A joint JASNA Syracuse/JABC-CNY holiday gathering will be held on Saturday, December 8 at noon at the Colgate Inn in Hamilton. We'll have lunch (in a private room with a roaring fire); raise a glass in honor of Jane Austen's 237th birthday (December 16, 1775); and hear JASNA Syracuse/Rochester Co-RC Lisa Brown discuss Regency Christmas customs.  Christmas, of course, was one of the four Regency "Quarter Days"--a topic dear to Lisa's heart!  

Lunch will be each-pays-for-him-or-herself from the Colgate Inn's lunch menu.  Heather (who is making the arrangements with the Inn) will need to know by November 29 whether you can join the  party, so please either email her at this address or contact JASNA Syracuse RC A. Marie Sprayberry (see "Contact Us" in the right-hand column") before that date. We hope to see you there!

Friday, November 2, 2012

The 11/3 Binghamton Meeting Is On!

Your Regional Coordinator writes:

I checked yesterday afternoon with our hosts at RiverRead Books (5 Court St., Binghamton), and they say that the state of emergency for Broome County has been lifted, the store is open for business, and they are looking forward to seeing us on Saturday.  So our meeting there (Saturday, Nov. 3, 2 pm) is on as scheduled!  As noted earlier, our topic will be parents and parent figures in JA's works; bring your favorite examples of "the good [if ineffectual], the bad, and the ugly" to share!

Also, we'll talk a little about the recent JASNA Annual General Meeting in Brooklyn.  And I have the usual assortment of little "freebies" from the AGM to distribute--so come and claim a small prize!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Reminder: All Hallows Meeting in Binghamton, Sat., Nov. 3 (We Hope!)

Here's a reminder of our All Hallows meeting Saturday, November 3, at 2 pm, at RiverRead Books, 5 Court Street, Binghamton.  Join us for a discussion of parents and parent figures--the good (but ineffectual), the bad, and the ugly!--in Jane Austen's works. Bring examples and quotes to share!

We'll also talk a little about the recent JASNA Annual General Meeting in Brooklyn, where both Regional Co-Coordinator Lisa Brown and I gave presentations (see the October 10, 16, and 19 posts on this blog). The Jane Austen's World blog has also just put up a long post about Lisa's session, with videos and photos, at this link.

SPECIAL WEATHER NOTE:  The Nov. 3 meeting will go on as scheduled IF Hurricane Sandy has caused no major complications along the Binghamton/I-81/Syracuse corridor during the week.  I will put up another post on Friday (assuming that power, if lost during the storm, has been restored by then!) with an update, after I check with our hosts at RiverRead to see what the situation is there.  (If I'm unable to post on Friday, this will probably be self-explanatory, but feel free to call me to ask. My contact info is at right under "Contact Us.")  Here's hoping we all make it through with no worse than a little wind and rain.

Finally, a special greeting to the folks who have joined JASNA in the last couple of months, and thanks to all of you members who have already renewed your memberships for the coming year.  (Remember that the new JASNA membership year officially began on Sept. 1.) If you're a member who hasn't yet renewed, we hope you'll do so--and if you haven't yet joined JASNA, it's never too late!  Go to this link for more information.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Laurie Viera Rigler Reading in Buffalo

On Thursday, November 15, at 7 pm, the Medaille College Write Thing reading series will be hosting Laurie Viera Rigler--author of Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict, and an Austen-related web series--at the Medaille campus in Buffalo.  Alice Villasenor, a JASNA friend who recently appeared in the Young Scholars Panel at the AGM in Brooklyn (see the October 19 post) and who teaches at Medaille, sent us this news and adds, "It would be great to see JASNA members in attendance!"  For more information about the reading, go here.  And feel free to contact Alice here if you have further questions.

Friday, October 19, 2012

The 2012 AGM: Pleasant Moments and Memorable People

Your Regional Coordinator writes:

The 2012 JASNA Annual General Meeting in Brooklyn has been reported so extensively by the national media (see the October 10 and 16 posts for links) that I'm going to forgo my usual AGM post in favor of a photo essay focusing on my own favorite moments and people.  The photos were taken by either Syracuse/Rochester Co-RC Lisa Brown, Syracuse Regency Beau Ed Voytovich, or myself.

First and foremost, we had Jane Austen herself on hand offering good advice.

AGM Co-Coordinators Nili Olay and Jerry Vetowich, along with Special Events Coordinator Kerri Spennicchia (not shown), have been working like stevedores for the past several years to ensure that this AGM would be a success.  Three hearty huzzahs for Nili, Jerry, and Kerri!

Green "Statue of Liberty" caps identified all of the New York Metro Region's helpful volunteers (who were augmented by several reinforcements from the Rochester and Syracuse Regions).  Michael Levin, husband of Meg Levin (one of NYM's Co-RCs), models the cap plus an extremely dapper Regency waistcoat.

 NYM's other Co-RC, Linda Dennery, was the conference's mistress of ceremonies.

A small flotilla of volunteer models, dressers, and stagehands assisted in making Lisa Brown's "Dressing the Miss Bennets" the crowd- and media-pleaser it so deservedly was.  Here, Tom Grande of Rochester inflates one of Lisa's mannequins with the aid of a compressor.

Another of the hardest-working people at the conference was Jennifer Weinbrecht (second from left),  of Jane Austen Books, here chatting with a customer in the Emporium.  The customer is carrying one of the distinctive black and red 2012 AGM tote bags.

Some of the Emporium's more frivolous wares!

One special session that I thought should have gotten more attention than it did was an exhibit of items from the Jane Austen's House Museum in Chawton, Hampshire, that people were encouraged to handle and examine closely.  Here's a copy of a pamphlet describing the 1799 trial for shoplifting of Mrs. Leigh Perrot, JA's rich and eccentric aunt.

And this is the account book of JA's great-grandmother Elizabeth Weller Austen.  Elizabeth was first left a widow with seven children at an early age, and was then practically disinherited by her wealthy father-in-law in favor of her eldest son.  (Shades of Sense and Sensibility!) Elizabeth bravely went out to work--at a time when extremely few women did so--and saw to it that her other six children were brought up respectably.  Her meticulous accounts were a vital part of this effort.

Dr. Cornel West's Saturday morning plenary session--in which he linked JA to various major strands of Western civilization, in rousing African American preacher style--was probably the most electrifying I've heard at any of the five AGMs I've attended. 

The Young Scholars Panel, with (left to right) Rachel Brownstein as moderator, Gillian Dow, Alice Villasenor, and Juliette Wells, was well worth hearing Saturday noon. 

At my breakout Saturday afternoon, "Sex, Power, and Other People's Money: The Prince Regent and His Impact on Jane Austen's Life and Work," I got a very warm reception.  I'm most grateful to the members of my audience--which included many friends from the 2009 JASNA tour of England, from earlier AGMs, and from all the NY State JASNA Regions--for their support.

Meg Levin, who introduced me at the breakout, shows off not only the commemorative medals I brought to pass around, but her own elegant Regency attire!

And then it was time for the banquet, promenade, and ball!  Here, Jason Flay and Nadia Vedder of the Syracuse Region enjoy the banquet.

Mary Pinkes--also of the Syracuse Region, although now a student at Mount Holyoke College--accepted her first-place essay contest award at the college level during the banquet.

A drummer and a fifer led us on the promenade.


Dancers of all ages and skill levels enjoyed the ball, from our own dance expert Lisa Brown... the littlest Janeites!

Finally, at Sunday brunch, we had the usual preview of coming attractions.  Here, Elaine Bander as Mrs. Norris deplores the quantity of butter and eggs that will be served at the 2014 AGM in Montreal. Leslie Eiser as Lady Bertram, accompanied by Pug, looks on bemusedly.

And Jerry and Nili prepare to hand over the AGM banner to Gail Parker of Minneapolis (second from left) for the 2013 AGM.  Iris Lutz, national JASNA President, looks on at right.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Upstate Productions of Pride and Prejudice

Lest you should think that all the Austen-related action has been happening in New York City this month, separate productions of Pride and Prejudice have been mounted in Ogdensburg and Albany as well.  Alas, the Ogdensburg production is playing for one night only as your RC writes this, and she is contrite at having learned of it and put up this post so late.  Nevertheless:

For an account of the L.A. Theatre Works production of P&P that took place in Ogdensburg on Tuesday, October 16, go here.

And for information about the Capital Repertory Theatre production of Pride@Prejudice--which, happily, is playing in Albany through October 28, and which certainly sounds like an entertaining and "Twittery" version of the classic--go here.

More Links to Coverage and Photos of the AGM

Well, one thing's for sure:  Hold a JASNA Annual General Meeting in one of New York City's five boroughs, and the press shows up!  Herewith, more links to media coverage of the 2012 AGM in Brooklyn:

For The Wall Street Journal, go here.

For the New York Daily News, go here.

For The Christian Science Monitor, go here.

For the unique perspective of a young writer who was one of Syracuse/Rochester Co-RC Lisa Brown's models for the "Dressing the Miss Bennets" presentation, go here.

And for JASNA Syracuse Regency Beau Ed Voytovich's photo album, go here.

Finally, your RC absolutely promises to post a personal view of the AGM tomorrow, plus some more photos!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The JASNA AGM in The New York Times

A longer post about the JASNA Annual General Meeting in Brooklyn this past week will be coming shortly.  Meanwhile, The New York Times has taken note of the AGM:  An article and many photos were posted to the online edition the evening of October 8 and appeared in the October 9 print edition.  And, at least for the time being, our own Lisa Brown (Co-RC for both Syracuse and Rochester) is the most celebrated Regency clothing expert in the land!  Go here for the online article and here for the photo slide show.  With pardonable pride, we've provided our own photo of Lisa's presentation above.

And your RC's breakout session on the Prince Regent was also well received.   

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Reminder: JASNA Syracuse Michaelmas Meeting in Liverpool, Sat., Sept. 22, 2 pm

A reminder that on Saturday, September 22, at the Liverpool Public Library at 2 pm, JASNA Syracuse will welcome a good friend from JASNA Rochester as the speaker for our Michaelmas meeting.  Professor Emeritus Leo Rockas of the University of Hartford (who now lives in Rochester with his wife, Virginia) will discuss his recent paper in JASNA's Persuasions journal, "When Did Darcy Fall in Love?", and address other questions about Pride and Prejudice.  This is the first of several meetings we hope to have on P&P during this, its bicentennial season (it was published in January 1813).

The Liverpool Public Library is located at 310 Tulip St., Liverpool, NY 13088. The Sargent Room is the smaller of the library's two meeting rooms (the Carman Community Room is the other). The library is easily reached from both I-81 North (if you're coming from the south) and the NY State Thruway:

From I-81, travel north from the junction with I-690, follow the signs for the Liverpool exits (near Carousel Center), and select the exit for NY Rt. 370 (Onondaga Lake Parkway). Take 370 along Onondaga Lake into the village of Liverpool, and stay on it as it angles slightly to the left and also becomes 2nd St. in the village. The library is on the corner of Tulip St. and 2nd St./370.

From the Thruway (from either direction), take Exit 38 (Liverpool/County Rt. 57). Travel south on 57 into the village, and take a right on Tulip St. (57 curves left at just about this point). Come down Tulip to 2nd St./370.

There is a small underground parking garage (entrance on Tulip), and ample free on-street parking is also available on Tulip and elsewhere. So we trust that your coachmen will be agreeably accommodated--and we hope you'll join us and Leo on the 22nd!

War of 1812 Quilt Show "1812 1/2" Reprise

JASNA Syracuse Region member Lynette Lundy-Beck of Sackets Harbor says that the War of 1812 Quilt Show there in March (see our February 19 post for details and quilt photos from that show) was such fun, the quilters are back for an encore on the weekend of September 29-30!  She writes:  

The Great Lakes Seaway Trail 1812 ½ Quilt Show at the Seaway Trail Discovery Center features the international traveling exhibit of 26 1812-style quilts, new Great Lakes Seaway Trail “Storyteller” interpretive panels about the War of 1812, and new works by American and Canadian quilters using patterns, colors and fabrics true to the 1812 time period.

Show hours are 10am-5 pm Saturday and Sunday. The $5 admission is good for both days. For more information, go online to this link or call Lynette at 315-646-1000 x203.

Lynette adds that Regency dress is encouraged--so if you're free for a lovely autumn drive on the 29th or 30th, put on your best Austenite threads and head for Sackets Harbor!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

JASNA Syracuse Fall Schedule and Other Events

Please mark your calendars now for this fall's Syracuse Region meetings and other events of interest to CNY Janeites:

    •    On Saturday, September 8, at the Colgate Bookstore (3 Utica St., Hamilton) at 2 pm, Heather Elia will lead the Jane Austen Book Club-CNY in a discussion of Persuasion.  Announcements of other fall JABC meetings will be listed in the "Events" column shortly.

    •    On Saturday, September 15, at the Pittsford Barnes and Noble (Rt. 31, Pittsford) at 1 pm, JASNA Rochester is kindly allowing your RC to "beta-test" her breakout presentation for the Brooklyn AGM,  "Sex, Power, and Other People's Money:  The Prince Regent and His Impact on JA's Life and Work."  Again, please see the "Events" column for announcements of other fall JASNA Rochester meetings.

    •    On Saturday, September 22, at the Liverpool Public Library (310 Tulip St., Liverpool) at 2 pm, JASNA Syracuse will welcome a JASNA Rochester friend as the speaker for our Michaelmas meeting.  Professor Emeritus Leo Rockas of the University of Hartford will discuss his recent paper in JASNA's Persuasions journal, "When Did Darcy Fall in Love?", and address other questions about Pride and Prejudice.  This is the first of several meetings we hope to have on P&P during this, its bicentennial season (it was published in January 1813).

    •    The Annual General Meeting itself--always the high point of the JASNA national year--will be held at the Brooklyn Marriott from Friday, October 5, to Sunday, October 7 (with several events both before and after).  In addition to Mary Pinkes's essay prize presentation (see the preceding post) and Marie's breakout session, our Co-RC Lisa Brown will be presenting her popular Regency fashion show for women, "Dressing the Miss Bennets."

    •    On Saturday, November 3, at RiverRead Books (5 Court St., Binghamton) at 2 pm, our All Hallows meeting will be devoted to parents and parent figures in JA's works.  Those attending the May Day discussion of villains and schemers picked this topic--and it's possible to argue that in JA's fiction, it may be only a short step from villains and schemers to parents!  Agree or disagree?

    •    And we'll be having a joint Christmas/JA's birthday meeting with the JABC in Hamilton on Saturday, December 8.  Time, venue (either the Colgate Inn or the Colgate Bookstore), and topic are TBA, but please do save the date!

Finally, a warm welcome to those who have joined JASNA since July 1--and warm encouragement to those of you who are not yet JASNA members to join (just go to this link). Remember, this is our only requirement for JASNA Syracuse Region membership; we charge no regional dues.

Our Local JASNA Essay Contest Winner!

We're very pleased indeed to announce that this year's winner of the annual JASNA Essay Contest at the undergraduate level is Mary E. Pinkes, a graduate of Jamesville-DeWitt High School near Syracuse, and currently a student at Mount Holyoke College.  Her winning essay, entitled "Abilities, Affections, and the Art of Pleasing:  The Ascent of Lucy Steele and Penelope Clay," can be read at this link. (How well this would have tied in with our discussion of "villains and schemers" in Binghamton in May!  We hope it may be possible to organize a future Syracuse Region meeting around Mary and the essay, whenever her Mount Holyoke schedule permits.)

Mary's mentor in writing the essay was one of her teachers at JD High School, Constance Myers-Kelly.  Both Mary and Constance have received one-year memberships in JASNA as part of their awards, and both have been invited to this year's JASNA Annual General Meeting in Brooklyn in October for the essay award ceremony at the Saturday evening banquet.  In addition, Mary will receive a scholarship check for $1000 and a set of JA's novels in the Norton Critical Editions.  Hearty congratulations and a warm welcome to the Syracuse Region to them both!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

London-Bromley Post

Four gorgeous matched horses.
The highlight of the Janeiacs' trip to the Walnut Hill Driving Competition was seeing an 1860s London-Bromley Post Coach that actually traveled the route discussed by Elizabeth Bennet and Lady Catherine de Bourgh in Vol. 2, Chapter 14 of Pride and Prejudice. It even had the name of the coaching inn that Lady Catherine recommends painted on the side.
Notice the name of the coaching inn,
 "The Bell," painted under the seat.
Click on the photo for a larger version.

Bromley is painted above the front wheel.

A very impressive sight. The coach is huge. 
 If you would like to see more photos from Walnut Hill click here.

Vol. 2, Chapter 14 of Pride and Prejudice

"And if you will stay another month complete, it will be in my power to take one of you as far as London, for I am going there early in June for a week; and as Dawson does not object to the barouche-box, there will be very good room for one of you -- and indeed, if the weather should happen to be cool, I should not object to taking you both, as you are neither of you large."

"You are all kindness, madam; but I believe we must abide by our original plan."

Lady Catherine seemed resigned.

"Mrs. Collins, you must send a servant with them. You know I always speak my mind, and I cannot bear the idea of two young women travelling post by themselves. It is highly improper. You must contrive to send somebody. I have the greatest dislike in the world to that sort of thing. Young women should always be properly guarded and attended, according to their situation in life. When my niece Georgiana went to Ramsgate last summer, I made a point of her having two men-servants go with her. Miss Darcy, the daughter of Mr. Darcy, of Pemberley, and Lady Anne, could not have appeared with propriety in a different manner. I am excessively attentive to all those things. You must send John with the young ladies, Mrs. Collins. I am glad it occurred to me to mention it; for it would really be discreditable to you to let them go alone."

"My uncle is to send a servant for us."

"Oh! -- Your uncle! -- He keeps a man-servant, does he? I am very glad you have somebody who thinks of those things. Where shall you change horses? -- Oh! Bromley of course. If you mention my name at the Bell, you will be attended to."

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Janeiacs' Trip to Walnut Hill Driving Competition

The Rochester "Janeiacs" (see our July 15 post) are off on another adventure:  this time to the Walnut Hill Driving Competition in Pittsford, NY, on Saturday, August 11.  This is the world's largest horse carriage competition; it recaptures the spirit of the 1890s with a 19th-century country fair setting.  More information about the competition is available at the Walnut Hill website

The admission cost is $10.00.  The Janeiacs will meet in the parking lot of Barnes & Noble in Pittsford at 9 am on Saturday the 11th (this B&N is JASNA Rochester's usual meeting place) and carpool to the event.  To reserve a spot on the trip or to ask any questions, please contact Lisa Brown (her contact info is under "Contact Us" in the right-hand column).

Sunday, August 5, 2012

War of 1812 Reenactment at Sackets Harbor

Your Regional Coordinator writes:  

My Regency Beau and I braved the heat on August 4 to attend a War of 1812 reenactment at the Sackets Harbor Battlefield, and enjoyed ourselves very much indeed.

I must admit that this occasion brought out my inner Lydia Bennet more than once.  "She saw all the glories of the camp; its tents stretched forth in beauteous uniformity of lines..."

"Their eyes were immediately wandering up in the street in quest of the officers, and nothing less than a very smart bonnet indeed, or a really new muslin in a shop window, could recal them."  (As you can see, my eyes were recalled.  I did not purchase this gown, but I bought several smaller items from Helen's Haberdashery.)

An outdoor kitchen consisted of an open firepit and cast-iron utensils.  (Make a mental note:  This arrangement may prove useful during the next major power outage in the Northeast.)

This vegetable garden is actually a seasonal battlefield exhibit rather than part of the encampment.  Lake Ontario is in the background.

 Wood being split for another kitchen, with a sign at left welcoming the public.

And indeed members of the public--of all ages--were made very welcome.  

This member of a Kentucky regiment explained that he was fighting on the British/Canadian side for the day, owing to a shortage of Canadians.

Redcoats on parade, with the Kentuckians included.  A handsomely gowned officer's wife (at right) records the scene.

An American rifleman (regiment not noted, unfortunately) shows Regency Beau the advantage of a green uniform over a British red one:  camouflage!

Not all of the American troops were actually gentlemen:  These ladies donned uniforms.

 But other ladies assumed more traditional feminine roles and attire.

Although (in an effort to avoid the worst of the heat) we arrived too early for the actual reenactment of combat, we did see some rifle drill on both sides.  Here, the Americans prime and load--a rather time-consuming process by present-day standards.

The result was a very satisfactory volley, however.

A representative of the Senecas (the "People of the Hill") explains to Regency Beau and others why the Senecas and several other Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) nations fought with the British and against the Americans during the Revolutionary War and afterward. 

The Sackets Harbor Battlefield monument.

A closeup of the monument's inscription explains that the actual bicentennial of the Battle of Sackets Harbor will be in 2013.  (And a bigger reenactment is planned for next year.)

As the morning wore on toward noon, sensible ladies like this mother and daughter retired into the shade--and your RC and her RB soon sought both shade and lunch.  But we plan to return for next year's reenactment, and we encourage you to do likewise!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Another Successful JASSYL Concert, and Wedding Bells!

From "Donna Della" to "My Love She's But a Lassie Yet," and through the two dances "Take a Dance" and "Jack's Maggot" (remember that in Regencyspeak a "maggot" is a clever and fanciful dance, not a fly larva!), the Jane Austen Singing School for Young Ladies (JASSYL) summer concert on July 22 was another notable success.  More photos from the dress rehearsal (in addition to the one above) can be found at this link. Two videos from the concert itself can be found on JASSYL's blog, and still photos from the concert should be posted both there and on JASSYL's Facebook page shortly.

And JASNA Syracuse extends its very best wishes to JASSYL director Dr. Joanna Manring, who is marrying her "Mr. Darcy"--Steve Davis, a faculty member at the University of Kentucky--today!