BY CHUCK MILES
The Caledonia Historical Society will host its annual Fall Heritage Festival Saturday and Sunday Sept. 8-9 at the Caledonia Historical Village, located on Five Mile Road just east of Highway 38. This year’s theme is “Early Caledonia.”
The family-friendly event is an educational opportunity that features living history from the mid to late 1800s when Caledonia was first being settled. Learn about the early ethnic settlers and the pocket communities they established. Hear about how they farmed their new land and the contributions they made to the region.
Civil War cannon demonstrations are provided showing both sides of The War of Rebellion in the 1860s. Civil War reenactors in period correct costumes will be available to answer questions both at the battlefield and at their camps. Other veteran groups will be on hand to share their stories of military life and the contributions that made our country great.
Tour the 1840s Ruud Cabin, the 1877 Caledonia Town Hall and visit with the village blacksmith at the Myers Museum. The Historical Village also includes the 1902 Milwaukee Road Depot, complete with a 1927 Caboose and the turn-of-the-century Botting two-story machine shed. All buildings will be open for viewing and staffed with docents to share each building’s history and answer questions. The Town Hall and the Caboose are not accessible to persons with disabilities.
Numerous youth activities will be offered including games and activities from the mid-1800s. For the older crowd, an assortment of activities and demonstrations will feature the agriculture of the time. Among these will be the ever-popular vintage sawmill.
The food court will feature a variety of foods to satisfy everyone’s taste, including the very tasty pie auction on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.
Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. There will also be an outdoor non-denominational church service at 9 a.m. on Sunday. The Caledonia Historical Society provides the event to the public free of charge. Parking is also free, but as this is our major fundraiser, a $5.00 donation is encouraged to help support the Village.
Chuck Miles is president of the Caledonia Historical Society.