Start the holiday season right with one of Richmond’s most beloved holiday traditions, Old-Fashioned Christmas at Maymont, on Sunday, December 3. Guests are invited to experience a celebration enjoyed by generations of families and revel in the merriment of the holiday season with an afternoon full of surprises and activities sure to please everyone.
Upon entering the majestic wrought-iron gates at the Hampton Street entrance, guests will go back in time as they walk past the historic buildings adorned with fresh wreaths, bright red bows, and fragrant evergreen swags. Transporting visitors into a magical winter wonderland reminiscent of Christmas past, Victorian ladies and gentlemen welcome them to Maymont Mansion to marvel at more than 400 ornaments on the 12-foot Christmas tree and the lavish formal rooms decorated in authentic holiday splendor with waves of poinsettias and other Victorian embellishments. They can delight in the gifts and games enjoyed by children in 1893 – the first Christmas celebrated by Major and Mrs. Dooley in their new home, stop by the Belowstairs where holiday preparations are underway, and hear the gentle jingling of sleigh bells during a horse-drawn carriage ride around the Mansion.
Seasonal entertainment as well as activities, old and new, make this an afternoon to remember. Music fills the air as guest-favorite Lamar Banister showcases his Antique Musical Review, playing joyful choruses of traditional Christmas carols, and the White Chapel’s gilded handbells vibrantly ring. Children can relish in holiday toys and games, pen letters to St. Nick, catch a tall tale or two from the new storyteller, Deborah Alsko, or partake in what may have been one of their parents’ or grandparents’ favorite Christmastime crafts – creating a bird-friendly pinecone ornament. A big fluffy Saint Bernard, the same dog breed that the Dooleys once had at Maymont, eagerly awaits greetings from the crowd. For extra time with the man in red, the entire family is sure to have a jolly good time at a party filled with magical wishes, a visit by St. Nick, crafts and special treats hosted by the Christmas fairy.
Free admission; fees for activities. Guided mansion tours: $5 per person/$4 members and children 12 and under. Carriage rides: $5
per person/$4 members and children 12 and under.
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