Ticonderoga, NY: Another full roster of events is slated for the coming season at Fort Ticonderoga as historic anniversaries abound. 2009 marks the Fort’s Centennial as a museum as well as the Quadricentennial of Samuel de Champlain’s landing on the peninsula. Celebrations are planned around both anniversaries along with the 250th Anniversary of the British capture of Carillon in 1759 and a full-scale Scottish Festival over the July 4th weekend.
A change in the traditional opening date, from May 10th to the 21st, will bring the season more in line with regional visitation, opening just before Memorial Day. The Fort ended its first century of being open to the public with the first increase in attendance in seven years. The 2008 season also saw the opening of the new Mars Education Center which houses a gallery, class and meeting rooms. The first exhibit in the new gallery, “Face of War; Triumph & Tragedy at Ticonderoga, 1758-1759” has been widely acclaimed and will remain up for the ‘09 season.
The Grand Encampment of the French & Indian War will take place from June 26th through the 28th. This year will celebrate General Amherst’s takeover of Carillon from the French forces in 1759. Over 1,200 reenactors, along with many sutlers selling 18th century wares, will attend. The event is sponsored by the New York State 250th Anniversary of the French & Indian War Commemoration Commission and I Love NY.
The Scottish Festival and Memorial to the Black Watch is slated for Saturday, June 20th, and will feature pipe bands, Clan tents, entertainment and many vendors. It will also include a parade to the Scottish Cairn and a ceremony in memory of the 42nd Regiment, the Black Watch, who fought here in 1758 and suffered over 60% casualties. A smaller scale Day of Scots took place in 2008 with both retired and active-duty troops from Scotland and Canada attending the ceremony. It is hoped their deployments in the Middle East will have ended and that many more will attend next year.
Dubbed ‘Quad and Centennial Day’, July 25th will feature celebrations of both anniversaries; the 400th Anniversary of Samuel de Champlain’s landing on this peninsula and the 100th year of Fort Ticonderoga being open to the public. A schedule of events will be available soon.
The King’s Garden also has early summer plans including plant sales, invasive species pulls, a special day for peonies, and much more! As the season advances Fort Ti will host many programs and events including the Fife & Drum Muster, the Revolutionary War Encampment, and another Haunted Fort.
The Fort closes on October the 20th but remained partially open for an additional week this past fall. There were many guests still in the region who took advantage of the half-price admission with just the grounds and the Mars Center gallery open. Fort Ticonderoga is a private not-for-profit site and a National Historic Landmark. Times and dates for all events and programs can be found on the website www.fortticonderoga.org.