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This holiday season, Newport Restoration Foundation (NRF) is offering a variety of holiday programs that are both classic and unique to the traditional Newport holiday experience. The events this December will include UnDecked Halls, an authentic view of a Newport mansion during the holidays, The Newport Historical Society’s Holiday Open House where a local tradition will be revived, and a holiday themed living history program at the Samuel Whitehorne House, where families can step back in time to Newport in the early 1800s.
Newport Historical Society’s Holiday Open House
Thursday December 1, 2016 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Colony House, Washington Square, Newport, RI
NRF is partnering with the Newport Historical Society for a condensed reading of the 1957 children’s novel The Christmas Tree Hessian, a tale that explores life and Christmas in Revolutionary War-era Newport thorough a child’s eyes. This live reading is a revival of a Newport holiday tradition and will take place during the NHS Holiday 0pen house at the Colony House. Admission is free, donations welcome.
Saturdays, December 3, 10, 17 & Tuesday, December 27
Tours every 1/2 hour from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Rough Point, 680 Bellevue Ave, Newport, RI
In the early 1900s, Bellevue Avenue was dark and quiet during the winter holiday season. The owners of the massive summer cottages typically spent 8 to 12 weeks in Newport during the warmer months, and were elsewhere to celebrate the holidays. This December, guests are invited to experience an authentic Newport mansion in winter at Rough Point, the Newport home of heiress, philanthropist, art collector, and world traveler Doris Duke. This behind the scenes tour is unlike other holiday mansion programs as it focuses on the winter holiday and caretaking traditions observed by Rough Point staff while Doris Duke spent Christmas in sunny Hawaii. Visitors will experience a quiet house, see the decorated service wing, and hear about Miss Duke’s tropical holidays. The tour features the first floor of the mansion, and guests will enjoy refreshments in the staff dining room, which is not normally open to the public. Tours offered every 1/2 hour. $10 for adults; 12 and under are free.
Christmas with the Whitehornes
Saturday, December 10, 2016 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Whitehorne House, 416 Thames Street, Newport, RI
Step back in time and experience the traditional Christmas festivities of early 1800s Newport at the Whitehorne House. Guests can interact with costumed interpreters portraying the Whitehorne family as they prepare for Christmas. At this living history event, learn about the differences between holiday celebrations past and present, from decorations to dining and even Christmas trees. Participants will receive authentic recipes from Mrs. Whitehorne’s own Sugar House Book. This interactive family program is presented by the Newport Restoration Foundation in partnership with the Newport Historical Society. Adults $8; $5 NHS members and military; 18 and under free.