To celebrate a new interactive exhibit, the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum is hosting a Victorian dinner with keynote speaker, Ed Bearss, Chief Historian Emeritus for the National Park Service.
ST. AUGUSTINE, FLA. – On Thursday, October 2nd, historian Ed Bearss will headline a special evening of events to celebrate the grand opening of At Home with the Harns, a new interactive exhibit at the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum. The ticketed event, which also includes a Victorian dinner, silent auction and live entertainment, will kick off at 7:00 p.m. with Bearss scheduled to speak at 8:30 p.m.
“I met Ed at the Civil War Institute summer sessions at Gettysburg College some years ago,” said Flagler College History Professor Dr. Thomas Graham, who will introduce Bearss at the event. “One of the Civil War experts on hand casually remarked, 'Ed can turn going to the water fountain into an adventure.' He is truly a legend at the National Park Service.”
Born in Billings, Mont., Bearss graduated from high school in 1941 before hitchhiking around the U.S. to visit Civil War battlefields. He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II and was seriously wounded by machine gun fire in 1944. Bearss went on to earn a master’s degree in history from Indiana University and two honorary doctorates.
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Each year Saint Augustine Ballet invites professional guest artists to perform the principal roles in their annual production of The Nutcracker. This year the four dancers are personal friends and former classmates of Saint Augustine Ballet’s Artistic Director, Luis Abella. The five Cuban natives became friends when they studied ballet together at the National Ballet School of Cuba in Havana. This will be the first time they have performed on the same stage since leaving Cuba to pursue their careers around the world.
Arionel Vargas, a principal dancer with the Royal National Ballet since 2004, returns to reprise his role as the Cavalier. Vargas will be partnering with his sister, Margit Vargas Rodrigues, when she dances the part of the Sugar Plum Fairy. Her husband, Daet Rodriguez will be dancing the role of The Prince. Daet and Margit Rodriguez own and operate the ballet academy, Cuballet Ecuador, and are former dancers with the Ballet of Camaguey in Cuba, and Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet.
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“A Festive Spanish Christmas” and the Christmas section of Handel’s “Messiah” are on the program for the first concert of the season for the St. Augustine Community Chorus at the Cathedral Basilica on December 13 and 14.
Chorus Director, Kathleen Vande Berg, has planned an exciting program, supplementing the Spanish theme of the first half of the program with soloist Hector Gonzalez, Countertenor, classical guitarists, dancers, and Spanish songs. The Youth Chorus will once again join the Community Chorus and the Jacksonville Concert Artists will provide the orchestral accompaniment. Returning as a soloist for the “Messiah” is Kandie Smith, Soprano. Timothy Workman, Tenor will also join the chorus for this Christmas tradition.
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