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10 Crucial Days of Christmas

Dec. 25

Annual Washington’s Crossing Re-Enactment: Each December, thousands of people gather on the banks of the Delaware River to watch the reenactment of George Washington’s daring 1776 Christmas night river crossing. During the event, several hundred reenactors in Continental military dress listen to an inspiring speech by General Washington and then row across the river in replica Durham boats. Noon-3pm, Crossing at 1pm; Free and Open to the Public. Washington Crossing State Park, Washington Crossing, PA, washingtoncrossingpark.org

Dec. 26

Trenton Battlefield Walking Tour: This 10-block interpretive walk brings to life the events of the two battles of Trenton. Guests are welcome to gather at Starbucks at 9 am for a question-and-answer session over coffee. The tour begins at 10 am and includes the historic Trenton Battle Monument, ending up along the Assunpink Creek in Mill Hill Park. Ralph Siegel of Trenton Battle eld Tours will lead the walk with block-by-block, minute-by-minute narrative. Starbucks, 102 South Warren St. (Corner of Front St.), Trenton. 10a.m.-noon, Free and Open to the Public. patriotsweek.com

Dec. 27

State House Artwork Tour: Celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Public Buildings Arts Inclusion Act with a special tour of the State House and Annex. Visitors see impressive artworks incorporated into the capitol complex, including stained glass, tilework, paintings and sculptures. One hour guided tours begin in the State House Annex Lobby. RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED. Program repeats on Friday, December 28th. New Jersey State House, (Enter via the State House Annex 145 West State St.), Trenton, 609-847-3150 for more information. Free and open to the Public, patriotsweek.com

Dec. 28

“Taking her Freedom: Ona Judge, the Woman who Defied George & Martha Washington”: Born in 1773 in the household of George and Martha Washington, the child of an enslaved mother of African descent and a European-American father, Oney (Ona) Judge’s story is one that contrasts the pursuit of freedom from English rule by American Patriots and the pursuit of freedom from slavery by people held in bondage by those same Patriots. Dr. Linda Caldwell Epps will discuss Ona Judge’s experiences as an example of the tension that existed between the ideals and the realities in the new republic. 1719 William Trent House Museum, 15 Market St., Trenton 1-2:15 pm., $10, $8 Trent House Association Members, williamtrenthouse.org

Colonial Ball: The Colonial Ball is your chance to mingle with the soldiers of the Battle of Trenton and learn their favorite dance steps! Historic Trenton Masonic Temple, 100 Barrack St., Trenton, 7-10 p.m., $25, $20 for Old Barracks Museum Members. Tickets will not be available at the door! Tickets available at barracks.org

Dec. 29

Battle of Trenton Re-Enactments

11 a.m.: First Battle: Battle Monument to Mill Hill Park: See it live! Follow the Battle of Trenton from the Battle Monument down Warren Street to Mill Hill Park. Troops rally at the Old Barracks Museum prior to marching off to meet at the Battle Monument.
3p.m.: Second Battle, Assunpink Creek: See the action of the Battle of the Assunpink in Mill Hill Park!
4 p.m.: The Assunpink Firewalk: Join your neighbors and friends as Mayor Gusciora and a colorful cast usher in a new holiday tradition in Trenton! Gather on the Iron Bridge in Mill Hill Park and be warmed by hot chocolate and music. As darkness falls, watch Continental soldiers light 13 torches along the south bank and hear the dramatic reading of Thomas Paine’s “The American Crisis”.

Dec. 30

Real Time Tour of the Princeton Battlefield: Join local historian William L. Kidder and re-enactors of various Congressional regiments for a real-time tour of the Battle of Princeton, which took place on the chilly dawn morning of January 3, 1777. Princeton Battlefield State Park, 500 Mercer Street, Princeton, 7-10 a.m. Suggested Donation:$10 adult, $5 for children 12 and under. To register: pbs1777.org, 609-389-5657

Colonial Church Service: Experience a Colonial service at one of Trenton’s oldest landmarks. Organized in 1712, the original First Presbyterian Church was built at its current location on Second (now State) Street in 1727 and used by the Hessians during 1776-77. The current building dates from 1827. First Presbyterian Church of Trenton, 120 East State St., Trenton, 10 a.m., Free and Open to the public, old1712.org

Trenton in 1775: Starting at St. Michael’s, and ending at the Trenton Friends Meeting this historic tour, led by dr. Sharon Ann Holt will explore stories of townspeople in Trenton during the Battles. Extensive walking involved; please dress for weather and mobility. Light refreshments will be served at the Friends Meeting House. St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, 140 North Warren St., Trenton, 1:00-2:30 p.m., Free and Open to the Public, patriotsweek.com

Dec. 31

Peace Vigil: Join the Trenton Friends Meeting for the annual vigil for peace in the new year. Light refreshments will be served. Trenton Friends Meeting, 142 East Hanover St., Trenton, 5-7 p.m., Free and open to the public, patriotsweek.com

Capital Philharmonic Orchestra of New JerseyNew Year’s Eve Concert: Celebrate the New Year with one of Trenton’s most beloved traditions. This year’s special guest artist is Grace Gilday renowned soprano. A night to remember! Conducted by Daniel Spalding. Trenton War Memorial, 1 Memorial Drive, Trenton, 8 p.m., Tickets $30-$70, capitalphilharmonic.org

Jan. 1

Self Guided Tours of the Battlefield:

Trenton Battlefield: Our Self-Guided Tour to the Battles of Trenton and Princeton tells you the story of the battles in satisfying detail, and gives you precise directions on how to visit the exact spots where the events took place. Some of the events and places will be familiar, some won’t be, but once you “take the tour”, you’ll never think about the greater Trenton area in quite the same way. hiddentrenton.com

Washington Crossing Historic Park: The Historic Village is the heart of Washington Crossing Historic Park and the site of many modern-day programs, including the reenactment of George Washington’s river crossing. This area includes the McConkey Ferry Inn, where Washington likely planned the crossing. The grounds are open from dawn to dusk for free self-guided tours. washingtoncrossingpark.org

Princeton Battlefield: Battle Maps, Bibliographies and Information about The Clarke House, The Mercer Oak, the Soldier’s Memorial and the current challenges of battlefield preservation. theprincetonbattlefieldsociety.org

Jan. 2 

Curl up with the latest in Revolutionary History:

The Road to Assunpink Creek — A New Look at the 10 Crucial Days: The author looks at the importance of the Battle of Assunpink Creek on January 2, 1777. This encounter has generally received less attention from historians than the other two engagements fought during the “Ten Crucial Days” of the American Revolution; however, an argument will be made during the talk that it was the most pivotal event of those days and perhaps of the entire Revolutionary struggle. He is a historical interpreter at Washington Crossing Historic Park in Pennsylvania, and conducts guided interpretive tours at this Registered National Historic Landmark and site of the Continental Army’s crossing of the Delaware River in 1776.

Jan. 5

Colonel Hand’s Historic March: Celebrate the 57th annual commemoration of Colonel Edward Hand’s Delaying Actions on the Maidenhead – Trenton Road on January 2nd, 1777. Historical programming and musket rings take place at the Municipal Center before a two-mile march along the historic highway leads to a cannon re at the Shabakunk Creek (Notre Dame HS). Lawrence Township Municipal Center, 2207 Lawrence Road, Lawrence Township. More information at the Lawrence Twp. Recreational Dept 609-844-7067

Written by

Amy Brummer is an operations professional who has followed a non-linear career path in the visual and culinary arts for more than 25 years. A tenured Trenton tax-payer, concerned citizen and political observer whose personal and professional interactions span the course of four administrations, she is tapped into the city's cycle of fortune and failure. Ms. Brummer is the founder of the Berenson Fund for Photography at the Arts Council of Princeton and hosts an annual new citizen's swearing-in ceremony in Trenton's City Council Chambers. She currently serves as COO of PTPVentures, Inc, an interventional business consulting agency based in Trenton.

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Written by TrentonCharmSchool