Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Greene Collection-A Child's Dress

Hello all! This blogger is back from vacation with a child's dress from the Greene Collection. While you may imagine that this lovely piece is for a young girl, you would be wrong! The actual dress is a little boy's dress, which was common at the time.

This dress is entirely hand stitched and made with a black and red spot pattern fabric. The bodice is gathered generously into the wide bound neckline which was intended to fit off the shoulder. The sleeves are short and flare slightly. The short skirt is gathered at the waistband and there is a drawstring in the back. There are 2 china hobnail buttons on waistband in back, and 4 more on bodice. Thes sleeves are edged with a dense, white hand made lace.

It came with an attached penciled note that reads: “Dress worn by Wm J. Dyer born Feb 16th -1850 June 1910”
and is from the family of Elisha Dyer, b 1811. Married Anna Jones Hoppin in 1833 and was the Governor of RI 1857-1859. His son Elisha Jr. was also the governor of RI from 1897-1900. Elisha Jr.'s son, William Jones Dyer b 1850 (original owner of the dress) married Lillian Pitman Greene. Their daughter, Anna Jones Dyer wrote some of the notes that accompanied the piece when it was aquired by the museum.

And We Have a Winner!

Congratulations Sandra Stahlman our winner for this month's Fireworks giveaway!   Sandra will receive 2 complimentary tickets and a parking pass to our Fireworks Extravaganza and Beatle Magic concert this Saturday, September 4th! 

Sandra we will contact you by email but you can also contact us at blog@gcv.org

Didn't win tickets and still want to attend? You can purchase tickets online, at the box office, or at Wegmans. 

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Fireworks Extravaganza Giveaway

For the  rest of August we are hosting an end of the Summer Giveaway!  We are giving away 2 Free Tickets (and a parking pass)  to our Fireworks Extravaganza, September 4, 2010!

If  you haven't been to our fireworks before then  you've never seen fireworks like this. Only one of two of  it's kind in the entire country the show features brilliant ground displays as well as aerial fireworks, all set to dramatic music and inspiring narration.

This year’s annual theme “Let’s Play Ball! American Sports History,” which will showcase the history of nine of America’s sports.

Set pieces are large pictures displayed by fireworks. The aerial fireworks and set pieces are all controlled and fired electronically by Young Explosives using state-of-the-art computer technology. This gives the spectator the utmost quality fireworks show as opposed to shows that are manually fired. This is a visual experience not to be missed!

Prior to the start of the show, there will be music, face painting, 19th-century games and crafts, plus festival food and drink stations with hot dogs, hamburgers, sausages, fried dough, cotton candy, popcorn and Abbott’s ice cream available for purchase. 

This year, for the first time ever in this area, Beatle Magic, a fantastic Beatles tribute band will play at 5:30 p.m. before the fireworks. Boasting the high visibility of strong vocals, music and a commitment to the accurate reproduction of the Beatles, this is the band to see if you want to know what it might have been like had the Beatles toured today!
You can enter between August 17-31 2010 at 9am EDT. The winner will be announced August 31st.

There are THREE ways you can enter. You can do 1 or all 3. Doing all 3 will get you three entries! Open to adults over 18.

*Enter a comment on this post.

Send us a question about the museum for our monthly Q & A Column-Please use the email link of the right of the blog.

*Become a follower of this blog.

We will pick a name at random and notify the winner by email and on the blog!

Good Luck!!!


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Old-Time Fiddlers' Fair-This Weekend!

If you love fiddle music, then rosin up your bow and head out to the museum this weekend for our Old Time Fiddler's Fair featuring hundreds of musicians on three stages with non-stop entertainment. Music will flow continuously with performances from more than 100 musicians, drawn from around the state and ranging from polished professional to the youngest beginner. Plan to join us once again at…

STAGE #1 The Rising Generation Stage ~ hosted by Fiddlesticks

This venue offers two full days of performance opportunities for our younger and/or newer fiddlers. Noted teacher Carol Monaco will again serve as Mistress of Ceremonies while her band, Fiddlesticks, provides back-up music for the performers. Stage #1 will offer a supportive environment for students, new performers and fiddlers who seek to enhance their skills. We will also be offering some special “Meet the Fiddler” presentations that will teach more about the fiddling tradition in New York State.

STAGE #2 The Exhibition Hall ~ hosted by Fiddlers of the Genesee

The museum’s spacious Exhibition Hall will again be the setting for expanded performances by fiddler- or dulcimer-oriented music clubs and bands. The Fiddlers of the Genesee will host two full days of music and fun.

STAGE #3 The Main Stage ~ hosted by The Flint Hill Folk Our traditional open stage is for fiddlers ages 12 and over and their accompanists. Noted regional fiddlers will kick-off each hour while, as always, other performance times are scheduled on a first-come-first-served basis.

Special Features of the Fiddlers’ Fair include

o The Fox Den will host a pick-in parlor in the Freight House both days of the fair as a place to perform and hear more country style songs and instrumentals

o Friday Night Jam Session on the Freight House deck from 7pm to 9pm

o Gospel Hour on Sunday morning from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Main Stage

o Square Dancing featured each afternoon at 4:30 p.m. at the Main Stage

o Hammered Dulcimer performances and play-along hosted by Mitzie Collins and Striking Strings both days of the fair

o Various jamming areas will be available around campus

o concert by the Genesee Harmonic Society Sunday at 2 p.m.


All fiddlers and their accompanists are admitted for FREE to this event. Please have your instrument IN HAND at the admissions gate in order to receive your pass for the day (pianists may simply identify themselves). Please accept the free admission only if you plan (or have already been booked) to play on one of the stages. All fiddlers under the age of 18 are entitled to free admission for themselves and one parent or guardian.


Fiddlers can sign up for performance times on Stage 1 and Stage 3 at each stage on the day of the event. Some time slots are reserved for key regional performers and presentations of traditional artists. If your group is interested in performing on Stage 2, of if you would like to discuss pre-scheduling a performance on another stage, please contact the Special Events Department at (585) 538-6822 or mneth@gcv.org.

The Old-Time Fiddlers' Fair is made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.

Monday, August 9, 2010

You Can Live Like a Pioneer & Local Bloggers Write About The Museum

Our Laura Ingalls Wilder Days event was a big a hit. We had families enjoying pioneer life all over the village this past weekend!

Did you know that you can come and live like pioneers at the museum for an entire weekend? You'll live in the Pioneer Homestead, (this includes sleeping!) make your meals over an open hearth, tend to the animals, haul your own water, pick your own vegetables and experience life like a 19th century pioneer, complete with period costume. If you've seen the PBS show, Frontier House, you'll be doing something similar (hopefully without all of the drama!)

Check out this blog post by a family who took part in our Pioneer House Program!

For more information on the Pioneer House you can click here. For an application, you can click here.

Local Folks Enjoying The Museum!
For more blog posts featuring the museum, check out the links below!

Scott Pitoniak talks about our Vintage Baseball League-Note, even though he references the tournament this past weekend, we have ball games going in through the end of the season!

A local family talks about their recent visit to the museum!

Another local blogger whose daughter volunteers at the museum wrote posts about our Civil War Reenactment & Meeting Dean Butler!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

National Silver Ball Tournament This Weekend!

This weekend, along with our Laura Ingalls Wilder event we are also hosting the National Silver Ball Tournament. All players play by vintage 1865 rules and wear period uniforms. It's baseball like you've never seen it before! We also have the first replica 1860's ball field in the nation!! The cost of tickets covers both the Laura Ingalls Wilder event as well as the Silver Ball Tournament!  This will really be a weekend that your whole family will enjoy! 

Friday, Saturday & Sunday, August 6-8

Teams from across the East, Northeast, Midwest and Canada clash during this eighth  annual National Silver Ball Tournament, featuring 23 vintage base ball games over three days.The matches will be played round robin style on three fields, including the museum’s Silver Base Ball Park — the first replica 1800s base ball park in the nation.
All teams play according to 1865 rules.

In addition, the museum's own Brooks Grove Belles and Miss Porter's Ladies Base Ball Club will play an exhibition game Saturday at 1:30 p.m. The game will be played on the Great Meadow.
Beginning Friday at 3:30 p.m., the teams will play continuously, with the championship game at 2 p.m. on Sunday.  

Games begin on Saturday and Sunday at 9 a.m. 
 The teams scheduled to appear include:

Brooks Grove Belles, Mumford, NY
Cleveland Blues BBC, Cleveland, Ohio
Flemington Neshanock BBC, Flemington, NJ
Flower City BBC, Mumford, NY
Kent BBC,   Grand Rapids, MI
Knickerbockers BBC, Mumford, NY
Live Oak BBC, Mumford, NY
Meddowe BBC, Springfield, MA
Melrose Pondfeilders BBC, Melrose, MA
Miss Porter’s Ladies BBC, Mumford, NY
Rochesters BBC, Mumford, NY
Talbot Fair Play BBC, Talbot, MD
Woodstock Actives BBCWoodstock, Ontario
All games are free with museum admission.
Major Event Admission rates: $16 adult; $10 youths 4-16, $13 seniors 62+ or students with ID, children under 3 admitted free.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Days Program Schedule

Just today I received a request for the speaking schedule for Dean Butler and William Anderson for this weekend's Laura Ingalls Wilder event!  Here it is! At the bottom I have also attached a link to the activity schedule for both days as well!
Laura Ingalls Wilder Days
Program Schedule

Saturday August 7, 2010

9 a.m. Museum Opens
10 a.m. William Anderson Book Signing, author of Pioneer Girl: The Story of Laura Ingalls
Wilder (Romulus Female Seminary)
11 a.m. Dean Butler Presentation, actor who portrayed Almanzo Wilder (Laura’s husband) on
the TV Show Little House on the Prairie (Village Square)
Noon William Anderson Presentation (Brooks Grove Church)
Noon–12:30p.m. Children’s Fashion Promenade – Join in the fun and show off your prairie outfit! “Best
costume” awards for the portrayals of Laura Ingalls Wilder, Almanzo Wilder and
Miscellaneous Ensemble (including Laura’s sisters). (Village Square)
1 p.m. Dean Butler Book Signing (Village Square) – limited to 100 autographs ($5/$10 charge
per autograph to help cover Butler’s appearance fee.)
2 p.m. William Anderson Book Signing author of Pioneer Girl: The Story of Laura Ingalls
Wilder (Romulus Female Seminary)
3 p.m. Dean Butler Presentation (Village Square)
4 p.m. Dean Butler Book Signing (Village Square) – unlimited autograph session ($5/$10
charge per autograph to help cover Butler’s appearance fee.)

Sunday August 8, 2010

9 a.m. Museum Opens
10 a.m. William Anderson Book Signing, author of Pioneer Girl: The Story of Laura Ingalls
Wilder” (Romulus Female Seminary)
11 a.m. Dean Butler Presentation, actor who portrayed Almanzo Wilder (Laura’s husband) on
the TV Show Little House on the Prairie (Village Square)
Noon William Anderson Presentation (Brooks Grove Church)
Noon–12:30p.m. Children’s Fashion Promenade – Join in the fun and show off your prairie outfit! “Best
costume” awards for the portrayals of Laura Ingalls Wilder, Almanzo Wilder, and
Miscellaneous Ensemble (including Laura’s sisters). (Village Square)
1 p.m. Dean Butler Book Signing (Village Square) – limited to 100 autographs ($5/$10 charge
per autograph to help cover Butler’s appearance fee.)
2 p.m. Book Signing with William Anderson, author of Pioneer Girl: The Story of Laura
Ingalls Wilder (Romulus Female Seminary)
3 p.m. Dean Butler Presentation (Village Square)
4 p.m. Dean Butler Book Signing (Village Square) – unlimited autograph session ($5/$10
charge per autograph to help cover Butler’s appearance fee.)

Activity Schedule!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Interview With Dean Butler, aka Almanzo Wilder

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing Dean Butler, the actor who played Almanzo Wilder, husband of Laura Ingalls Wilder, on the TV show, Little House On The Prairie. Butler will be at the museum both Saturday & Sunday as part of our Laura Ingalls Wilder Days event. Since leaving Little House, he has appeared in numerous TV shows and movies. In addition to that, he has his own production company, Legacy Documentaries, where he has produced among other films, a documentary about the real Almanzo Wilder, entitled, Life Before Laura, which details Almanzo's younger years in Burke New York. He also has a documentary about Laura slated to be out by the end of this year.

Since this blogger grew up reading The Little House Books and watching the TV show, this interview was a real thrill for me and I hope you are excited about Dean's visit after reading the interview!

GCV Blogger: We know that you played Almanzo Wilder, the husband of Laura Ingalls Wilder on the TV Show Little House On The Prairie. However, you took it one step further, and made a documentary about the real Almanzo Wilder, and now another one about Laura herself. What was so compelling about them that moved you to do this?

Dean Butler: I choose to do the documentaries because I've always wanted to stay connected to Laura material. They are beautiful stories and as an actor I respond very much to visual media. It was a natural thing for me. The documentaries do not concern the TV show. The Almanzo documentary chronicles Farmer Boy, which, of course, was not shown in the TV series. The Laura documentary is really about her journey as a writer. I have found that people who loved the books and the series have a desire to see and learn more about Laura and Almanzo.

GCV Blogger: I think I just heard that Little House On The Prairie plays in 100 countries every day. Is that true?

Dean Butler: It actually plays in over 100 countries a day. The show has never been off the air since it premiered in 1974.

GCV Blogger: Why do you think the show has such staying power?

Dean Butler: Little House was never a hip thing. It was old when it was new but it had a sincerity factor that continues to resonate with people. It's not sophisticated but it was never meant to be. It's timeless & beautiful. I think that everyone who was involved in it is enormously grateful that we were a part of something like this. There is currently a little house musical which just finished it's first tour and will probably be back for a second season. People continue to respond to this material.

It is a highly romantic view of the American experience. Certainly the real experience was different and harsh and the Ingalls family did not have an easy time. But what Laura Ingalls Wilder was able to do was spin her families tragedies in a way that leaves you hopeful that tomorrow could be a better day. They never quit. Even at the moment that Pa shakes his first in the air in despair during The Long Winter, the moment passes and they find their way out of it. Today we have so much coming at us, that the the simplicity of that life, the grounding of it, makes you feel like it's going to be ok.

GCV Blogger: What can we expect from your presentation?

Dean Butler: I tend to be pretty free from with these. I'll probably talk for about 20-25 minutes about joining the series and then open it up for questions. Depending on the questions these things can be really intriguing, funny and even touching. Everyone usually ends up having a lot of fun.

GCV Blogger: What question would be the most interesting to ask you?

Dean Butler: People always ask about working with Michael Landon & Melissa Gilbert which is always interesting but an intriguing question would be the similarities between Michael Landon and Laura Ingalls. At first glance they may not seem very similar but they were both story tellers in their own right, and fearless and tenacious in their own ways.

GCV Blogger: Bill Anderson, Laura Ingalls Wilder historian will also be presenting. You've done a lot of events haven't you?

Dean Butler: Yes! Bill is a great contrast because he's seen maybe 3 Little House Episodes. So you get someone who can really talk about the show and someone who can really talk about the books.

GCV Blogger:
Now I'm going to ask you my own LHOTP question! What was your favorite storyline that you go to play as Almanzo?

Dean Butler: Well there are 3 that really come to mind.

The first is a romantic one. The one that really gave us the Almanzo character. It's the Sweet 16 episode, which is based on These Happy Golden Years, where Laura becomes a school teacher and Almanzo starts to see her differently, and they fall in love. That episode was played multiple times the first season that it ran which is unheard of.

GCV Blogger: Well I think that's probably because not only did Almanzo see her differently, but we as viewers saw her differently as well.

Dean Butler: Exactly! Melissa even talks about this. It was a real evolution point for the series and a real turning point for her. It also really marked the beginning of Michael Landon's exit as an actor. When a show is about a father's love for his family, and the little girl grows up and falls in love, there is no more sitting in Pa's lap and telling him about school that day. There is no going back.

The next episode is Sunshine and Shadows which is really the book The First Four Years made into 2 episodes for TV. Laura and Almanzo did not have an easy time of it when they first married, and faced so many difficult things together. As an actor, it was great being able to play that out.

My third favorite episode has a comedic twist. It's called The Nephews and is about Royal, Amanzo's brother's boys coming to visit and they are just terrors. It was the kind of comedy that Michael was so good at writing. Those boys had Almanzo's number and there was a lot of upset and hi-jinks. It was really fun to play and watch!

Got your own questions for Dean Butler? Don't miss our Laura Ingalls Wilder Days this coming weekend where Dean will be speaking twice per day and providing ample time for your questions as well as signing autographs. You will also be able to purchase a copy of his Farmer Boy DVD, the trailer of which, you can see below.

And stayed tuned Little House fans because on Thursday I'll be sharing an interview with Laura Ingalls Scholar William Anderson!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A 9 Year Old Writes About Laura Ingalls Wilder Days

Olivia Mullins
Today's post is by guest blogger, 9 year old Olivia Mullins, who has been to both of our previous Laura Ingalls Wilder Days and is looking forward to attending this year! This is an awesome event that truly is something your children will remember for a long timer to come!

My favorite thing to do during summer vacation is go to Laura Ingalls Wilder Day at the Genesee Country Village & Museum! There are so many fun things to do there!

If you want to, you can come in a costume and enter in the Pageant. There are different categories. You can dress up as Laura, one of her sisters, Almanzo, or Nellie! Last year, my sister won First prize in the Sister category. She won as Carrie, and got a gift card to the museum gift shop.

My favorite part of Laura Day is going to make the crafts there and churn butter or wash clothes.

With "Ma Ingalls" Karen Grassle
Every year I enjoy meeting the character from the “Little House” show. First, it was Alison Angrim, then Karen Grassle, and now Dean Butler (I hope Mary comes next!). My sister and I have the Little House books, so we pick out the book that most suits the character and we ask them to sign the books.

My family and friends make an old fashioned lunch and we dress up. We go into the big field where people play old fashioned baseball and we sit down and eat our lunch. I help my family by telling someone what they should make, by listing it out of my Laura Books. We have brought cheese, bread, hard-boiled eggs, sugar cookies, corn muffins, and apples. Last year we brought delicious fried chicken!

Sister MacKenzie Washing Clothes
There are tons of things to do and there is something for everyone! I think Laura Ingalls Day is awesome because you get to go back in time and experience the things people did in the 1800's! I love history, and if you love history like I do, then you should go to Laura Ingalls Day at the Genesee Country Village! Maybe I'll see you there!

This year's Laura Ingalls Wilder Days will be held August 7th & 8th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tickets, are available at the museum’s gift shop, by phone: 585-538-6822, online, and at Wegmans

Admission: adults $16, youth (4-16) $10, seniors 62+ & students with ID $13, children under 3 admitted free.

You can also click on the link below to purchase tickets!