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Event will feature a great variety of brews and hard ciders, plus a truly unique Gettysburg experience not to be missed!

GETTYSBURG, PA (November 6, 2013) – the Gettysburg Festival, Inc., is making plans for its inaugural Gettysburg Brew Fest, Saturday, August 23rd on the historic grounds of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg. Featuring an impressive array of local, regional, Pennsylvania and national brewers, the Gettysburg Brew Fest is a fundraiser for non-profit Gettysburg Festival, Inc.

The new event was approved unanimously by the Gettysburg Festival Inc. monthly board meeting on Monday, November 4th.

“This event is already proving to be one of the most highly anticipated events in the Gettysburg area” said Gettysburg Festival, Inc. Executive Director, Randy Prasse. “Just while soliciting feedback from locals businesses and residents over the past six months, it is clear to me that there is a high level of interest and strong demand from beer-enthusiasts throughout the region for an upscale brew festival in Gettysburg. 

Prasse added, “It further enhances and drives the magical “Gettysburg brand” to visiting consumers who may not otherwise visit the area as a result of interest in our history alone-particularly crucial as the entire region transitions to a post-150thcommemoration period in our existence.”

With spectacular views of the Gettysburg Battlefield and South Mountains, set against the backdrop of the newly opened Seminary Ridge Museum- arguably one of most historic and recognizable structures in Gettysburg- the event will deliver a distinctive sampling experience.

Initially offering one afternoon session-from 4:30pm to 8:00pm-the Gettysburg Brew Fest will not only offer an impressive array of brews and hard ciders from the immediate region and throughout Pennsylvania- but from around the U.S. as well.

According to Prasse, “We are launching this event as a one-day, single-session experience-but depending on market interest and demand, we will certainly consider expanding it”. Prasse, with 25 years of festival management successes of his own, is partnering with BrewFest Partners, based in Racine, Wisconsin. BrewFest Partners brings over 25 years of festival management experience, including over 10 developing and managing brew festivals in Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana.

$45 advanced and $55 private-session VIP tickets will go on-sale in April through the Gettysburg Festival, Inc. website and will be limited to 1,000 attendees to ensure a great experience will be had by all who attend.

For more information about the Gettysburg Festival, Inc.’s Gettysburg Brew Fest, please visit

Pre-Festival Events Begin Friday and the Festival Will Be In Full Swing Saturday, With Over 75 Events
During the 10-Day Celebration

GETTYSBURG, PA (June 6, 2013) – The cross roads of history and culture come together this weekend for the 6th Annual Gettysburg Festival, held June 7-16th throughout downtown Gettysburg.   Offering more than 75 events – all celebrating American arts, culture and cuisine – the majority are free and open to the public and showcase talents on a local and national level. The full listing of events, as well as descriptions and links to purchase tickets can be found online at

“No matter where you are in the world, when you say ‘Gettysburg’ people connect with the word and to the greatest battle in the Civil War,” explains Festival Executive Director, Randy Prasse. “We are a town proud of our rich history. We are also a town with a great well of talent. The Gettysburg Festival strives to celebrate both,  by  providing  access to  the  arts  and  presenting  family-appropriate and affordable entertainment and activities for every taste and budget.”

Gettysburg Festival’s Top 10 events for 2013 include:
1. The  Gettysburg Brass Band Festival combines the excellence of brass concerts with a picturesque location. The event takes place at the beautiful campus of the Gettysburg Lutheran Theological Seminary.

Musical performances spotlight some of the best brass groups from the mid-Atlantic region, including Rockfield Brass, Benfield Brass, Spires Brass, Federal City Brass, Chesapeake Brass, 11 Infantry Fife & Drum, Maryland Defense Force Band and closing out with a Taps tribute performed by renown bugler, Jari Villanueva.  Event Details: Saturday, June 8 the Lutheran Theological Seminary. Free, but ticket required. Bring your own chair.

2. Blues music and BBQ… an all-American combo! One of the Festival’s most popular events, Blues, Beer & BBQ will feature the U.S. Army Field Band Volunteers, legendary bluesman Big Jack Johnson’s backing band, the Cornlickers and PA’s First Lady of Blues, Octavia.  Event Details:  Saturday,  June  8 at 9:00pm @ Gettysburg College, Memorial Field. Tickets are $40 including the BBQ (4-7pm) and $10 for concert ticket only.

3. Striving to be an event for the entire family, Gettysburg Festival plays host to a great children’s program.  This year’s  Children’s  Art Fair  will  pay  tribute  to  the  agricultural  heritage  of  Adams  County  with  a program designed as a world market of creative ideas, with a focus on healthy living. Children will do various fun activities and leave with several unique take-home pieces of their very own, from lettuce plugs to plant to one of a kind craft items they’ve made themselves.  The afternoon will be rounded out by performances from the Gettysburg Community Theater and storyteller, Ann Griffith.

Event Details:
Sunday, June 9th
12:00-5:00pm @ Gettysburg College Penn Hall lawn.  Free and open to the public.

4. Hailing from Columbus, Ohio, Phil Dirt Presents: Surfs Up! A Tribute to the Beach Boys has been together for 20 years and gained a reputation as the nation’s hottest beach party band. Performing hits from The Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, The Hondells, Ronny and The Daytonas, and others will have the crowd on its feet, dancing and singing along.  Bring the whole family and join the beach party on Memorial Field!  Come decked out in your finest beach party attire. The best dressed beach bum will win a Pendleton board shirt in Beach Boys plaid, donated by Pendleton Woolen Mills at the Gettysburg Outlets!

Event Details:
Sunday, June 9 for provided seats or $10 if you bring your own chair.
7:30pm @ Gettysburg College Memorial Field. Tickets are $15

5. The  Aureole Trio  is  sure  to  be  a treat for the Gettysburg Festival audience!  This unique blend of instruments – consolidating the entire orchestral palette into its three essential components – performs with an infinite array of colors and sounds. The variety and scope of Aureole’s repertoire appeals to audiences of all ages and backgrounds. The trio has performed for the Saint Louis and Chicago Chamber Music Societies, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, the National Gallery in Washington, DC, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, as well as on A&E Television Network’s “Holiday in New York”, on the Bravo Television Network, and has been interviewed and featured frequently on NPR’s “Performance Today.”

Event Details:
Tuesday,  June  11
Conservatory. Tickets are $20.

6. Attendees will depart History Meets the Arts: Edible Art Tour satiated and inspired after visiting five galleries throughout Gettysburg’s historic district, meeting world class artists and local top-tier chefs and enjoying both artistic and culinary masterpieces. Guests will have the first chance to view the 2013 History Meets the Arts galleries, meet the artists and enjoy culinary masterpieces at every stop. Gallery locations are: Adams County Arts Council, Gettysburg  Frame  Shop,  King  James  Gallery,  Lord  Nelson’s Gallery and Lord Nelson’s Satellite Gallery at the Gettysburg Fire Hall.  Participating restaurants include: Blue Parrot Bistro, Garryowen Irish Pub, Gettysburg Hotel, Inn at Herr Ridge, Wyndam Gettysburg and Fairfield Inn 1757.

Event Details:
Thursday, June 13
Tickets are $35.

7. Atlantic Records recording artist, Hunter Hayes, has made quite an impact on the music scene since releasing his debut album in October of 2011.  He was named the Country Music Association’s best New Artist of 2012, received multiple Academy of Country Music award nominations, won a Teen Choice award for Male Country Artist, has appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman, Good Morning America, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show and toured as the opening act for Taylor Swift, Rascal Flats and Carrie Underwood.  And, now, Hayes is bringing his lifetime of music experience and prowess to the Gettysburg Festival audience… An event that is sure to please young and
old alike!

Event details:
Friday,  June  14
Gettysburg College Memorial Field. Tickets are $25.

8. Widely regarded as America’s most popular and respected author  of military fiction, master storyteller Jeff Shaara captivates audiences by bringing America’s vivid past to life in stories that span from the American Revolution to World War II.  Son of Pulitzer prize-winning author, Michael Shaara (The Killer Angels), Jeff wrote a prequel (Gods and Generals, 1996) and a sequel (The Last Full Measure, 1998) to his father’s classic work, followed by the creation of ten additional historical novels, every one a New York Times Bestseller.  Shaara is a renown speaker and will be bringing his lecture, “History through Storytelling, Jeff Shaara’s Journey Through the Legacy of his Father” to the Gettysburg Festival audience.

Event details:
Saturday, June 15
11:30am @Adams County Ag & Natural Resource Center. Tickets for this lecture and luncheon are $40.

9. One of popular music’s most romantic singing groups, The Lettermen are bringing their close-harmony pop songs to the Majestic Theater stage for Gettysburg Festival 2013!  In a career spanning over 50 years, the talented trio has given us iconic songs like “When I Fall in Love,” “The Way You Look Tonight,” “Sealed with a Kiss” and “Unchained Melody,” and is sure to be a crowd-pleasing favorite feature of the Festival. Come fall in love… Again! Event details: Saturday, June 15 are $52.50, $42.50 & $32.50 and can be purchased through the theater at 717.337.8200 or online at

10. Gettysburg Festival, in conjunction with Boritt Films and the Majestic Theater, is pleased to host the world premiere of “The Gettysburg Story.” Dramatically telling the history of the greatest battle fought in the Western Hemisphere, “The Gettysburg Story” was written, produced and directed by Gettysburg native, Jake Boritt and is narrated by actor, Stephen Lang (Avatar, Gettysburg).  Using cutting edge technologies – including high definition radio control aerial drone cinematography, motion control timelapse footage, dynamic digital geo-location graphic maps – and being granted unprecedented access to the 6,000-acre battlefield, “The Gettysburg Story” captures the unique and timeless piece of American history, telling it in a new way. Event details:  Sunday,  June  16  at  3:00pm  at  the  Majestic  Theater.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased through the theater at 717.337.8200 or online at

*All events, prices, personalities, venues, dates and times subject to change without notice.

Highlights For This Year’s Event Include “History of Taps” Seminar with Jari Villaneuva, Federal City Brass Band, PA Volunteer Infantry Fife and Drum, Maryland Defense Force, and More!

GETTYSBURG, PA (April 19, 2013) – Gettysburg Festival is pleased to present another stellar line-up for the Brass Band Festival during its annual 10-day celebration of the arts. Always a much-loved portion of the Festival, this year’s Brass Band event, held June 7 and 8 throughout downtown Gettysburg, will feature a seminar on the “History of Taps” with expert, Jari Villaneuva, Federal City Brass Band, 11th PA Volunteer Infantry Fife and Drum, Maryland Defense Force, the Wildcat Regiment Band, and more.
        While the Brass Band Festival is free, tickets are required to attend and can be obtained online at Donations will be welcomed at the event to help cover costs of this free event. All who donate will receive a special commemorative button.
     The two-day brass extravaganza will kick off Friday, June 7th at 3:00pm with the “HistoryImage of Taps” seminar at the train station pavilion with Jari Villaneuva. A retired Air Force Band bugler, Villaneuva is the country’s foremost expert on military bugle calls. As a ceremonial trumpeter, Villanueva participated in well over 5,000 ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery and served as an assistant drum major leading The USAF Ceremonial Brass in funerals at Arlington. Villaneuva has been decorated with many accomplishments and awards, including induction into the Buglers Hall of Fame in 2007. In the program, Villanueva will discuss field music and it’s importance during the war and demonstrate
calls used in both camp and battle, with calls being played on an original Civil War bugle. The event will be bookended on Saturday, June 8th with a “Taps” performance at the Cupola of Schmucker Hall at Lutheran Seminary as the closing ceremony of the Brass Band Festival.
     Other performances throughout the weekend include Market Street Brass, Gettysburg Brass and the Federal City Brass Band on Friday evening at Lincoln Square and the Dobbin House patio and the Brass Band Festival on Saturday, featuring the Rockville Brass Band, Benfield Brass Band, Spires Brass Band and Chesapeake Brass Band. Saturday evening will bring performances from 11th PA Volunteer Infantry Fife and Drum and the Maryland Defense Force Band.
     “The Brass Band Festival is an important part of Gettysburg Festival as a whole for us,” explains Festival Executive Director, Randy Prasse. “This is a celebration of Gettysburg’s rich history and we are proud to welcome Jari Villaneuva, as well as all the bands and participants. We are also pleased to partner with Steinwehr Avenue Business Improvement District to provide Friday night’s performance at the Dobbin House and at the American Civil War Wax Museum on Saturday.” Additionally, many of Saturday’s performances will be held at the Hill-Unger Pavillion at the Lutheran Theological Seminary. For the full schedule of the two-day Brass Band Festival, including times and locations, please visit
     The celebration of Brass continues the following weekend with a performance from the Wildcat Regiment, in service as the Regiment Band of the 105th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, on Saturday, June 15th at 2:00pm at the National Park Service Museum and Visitor Center and at 6:00pm for an evening concert at the Pennsylvania Memorial on the Battlefield. This modern re-creation of the Civil War band utilizes original instruments and reproduction hand-made uniforms.

Celebrating its sixth year, the Gettysburg Festival (a 16-time IFEA Pinnacle Award winner) is a sought out event, which has grown to become a yearly tradition for the entire family with both area residents and tourists alike. With an average attendance of 23,000 people from 30 states and the District of Columbia, the Festival celebrates local talent within the community through its Fringe events in the areas of visual arts, culinary arts, theater, film, music and children’s events, as well as presenting world-renown experts in these categories. Past highlights include James Earl Jones narrating A Lincoln Portrait, comedy legend Bob Newhart, Kevin Eubanks of Tonight Show fame, former White House Chef Walter Scheib and the critically-acclaimed Boston Brass, to name a few. Ideally situated in historical central Pennsylvania and located within a day’s drive of 60% of the entire North American population, Gettysburg Festival 2013 will be held June 8-16th. The Gettysburg Festival is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.

Highlight performances and activities for the 2013 Gettysburg Festival include: CMA’s “New Artist of the Year,” Hunter Hayes; iconic romantic trio, The Lettermen; New York Times best-selling author, Jeff Shaara; Phil Dirt presents: Surfs Up! A Tribute to the Beach Boys; and perennial favorites, Blues, Beer & BBQ; History Meets the Arts Edible Art Tour; and the Children’s Festival.
For more information about the Gettysburg Festival, the 2013 line-up or tickets to various events, please visit our website at Up-to-the-minute details can be found on Twitter ( ) and Facebook ( ).
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ImageThe Gettysburg Festival is pleased to welcome our new Executive Director, Randy Prasse. He stepped into his new role on Monday, March 18 and has hit the ground running in preparation for the 2013 Festival.

Selected from 200 applicants responding to a national search, Gettysburg Festival Board Chair, Edith Jardine, explains the board’s decision: “We believe that in Randy Prasse we have the perfect combination of experience and demonstrated success. He brings an extensive background in major festival and event management, including five years as CEO and Executive Director of the Wisconsin State Fair and an impressive history of consistently designing programming that attracts people to the downtown area with a focus on food, art, culture and street performers – which was very important to us, since supporting our local economy is part of the Gettysburg Festival mission.”

Prasse’s tenure with the Wisconsin State Fair – the state’s largest event – saw the event go from a $3.7 million deficit in 2005 to consecutive $1.5 million surpluses in 2007 and 2008, with increased multi-year corporate sponsorships and higher attendance.

Additionally, Prasse has been active in industry leadership, including serving on the President’s Council of the International Festival and Events Association (IFEA) and filling the role of President of IFEA’s local Wisconsin chapter. Most recently, he served as the Director of Destination Marketing for Discover Mediaworks in Madison, Wisconsin and Executive Director of the Fox Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau, representing over a dozen communities in northeastern Wisconsin.

“I am so excited to be joining the Gettysburg Festival at this time – although it has already established itself as a viable festival – it has such real potential to be one of the truly great festivals in North America,” says Prasse. “I believe a community is defined by how it celebrates – the community’s similarities and differences…its culture and heritage. Gettysburg is so rich in culture and heritage- including but also in addition to the Battlefield. The Gettysburg Festival celebrates the community and region for all of its assets.”

Hailing from Freeport, Illinois, Prasse was raised on a dairy farm that has been in his family for six generations, dating back to 1873. He and his wife, Susan, have three daughters and are in the process of relocating to Gettysburg. A long-time Harley-Davidson owner, Prasse is anxious to explore south central Pennsylvania on his motorcycle.

In celebration of its fifth annual festival, the Gettysburg Festival is giving away FIVE (5) buy-one-get-one free tickets to the Blues, Brews & BBQ Featuring Shemekia Copeland.

Saturday, June 9

6:00 – 10:00 pm

Gettysburg Festival Main Stage

One of the Festival’s most sought-after tickets, this event combines the hottest cuisine along with sizzling blues singer Shemekia Copeland. Plus, enjoy a cooking show by the fiery “Biker Billy” and rub elbows with former White House Chef Walter Scheib who designed the entire event. A gleaming 2012 Harley-Davidson Dyna Street Bob FXDB, donated by Battlefield Harley-Davidson and valued at $12,999, will be raffled to one lucky winner.

The Details:

To enter to win a free ticket, write a comment here – before 9:00 am on Thursday, June 7, 2012 – describing why you want to attend the Blues, Brews & BBQ event. At that time, an online random number generator will be used to select five commenters as winners. Each winner will be entitled to a free ticket of the same value of a ticket purchased to the concert. This offer applies to General Admission only.

Return tomorrow to learn if you’re a winner!

Gettysburg Festival’s All-American Brass Picnic on Saturday, June 16 will offer a “picnic in the park” setting at the Festival Main Stage at Gettysburg College. The full afternoon lineup will spotlight some of the best brass groups from the mid-Atlantic region as part of the 10-day Gettysburg Festival celebrating American arts, culture and cuisine.

“The brass picnic is truly a slice of Americana and a great way for the community to come together,” said Beth Kirby, Executive Director of the Festival. “Gettysburg Festival is pleased to offer free admission to this fantastic event, meeting our goal of making the arts accessible and available to all.”

The lineup includes:

12 pm: Spires Brass Band of Frederick, MD
1 pm: Athena Brass, representing 13 states across the USA plus Canada
2 pm: No BS! Brass Band of Richmond, VA
4 pm: Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass of Philadelphia, PA

This project is partially supported by a grant from Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour, a program developed and funded by The Heinz Endowments, the William Penn Foundation, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and The Pew Charitable Trusts, and administered by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation. Media sponsors for the All American Brass Picnic include Celebrate Gettysburg Magazine and Susquehanna Style Magazine.

A Dream Team Gives Back

The Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass (RMPBB) is composed of some of America’s top brass musicians dedicated to bringing the joyous experience of great music to a wide range of audiences. A veritable “dream team” of virtuoso brass players, members of the group have appeared on the world’s most prominent stages.

RMPBB is dedicated to the notion that music is a gift to be enjoyed by everyone, and its members are especially committed to reaching out to the world’s youth and inspiring them to reach for their dreams. To share this commitment in Gettysburg, the Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass will offer a free workshop; open to brass musicians of all ages and levels.

This unique opportunity, partially supported by a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, will take place on June 16th from 11am -12pm at The Junction in the College Union Building (CUB) of Gettysburg College. The workshop is free but reservations are required and can be made by calling the Festival office at (717)334-0853.

New to the Festival Stage

Named after the Greek Goddess of wisdom, the Athena Brass Band is the first all-female brass band in the United States. Formed in 2003, with members from across the country and Canada, Athena musicians include current or former members of the U.S. Army Band, the U.S. Coast Guard Band, Brass Band of Battle Creek and the New Sousa Band.

If You Decide to Go…

The Festival Main Stage is shifting to a new, larger location on the Gettysburg College campus for 2012. It will be located on Memorial Field, behind the College Union Building, with free on-campus parking nearby at Stadium Lot. This more spacious location allows for better visibility of the stage, without trees in the line of sight; however portions of the day have the potential for direct sunlight so attendees are encouraged to wear hats and bring sunscreen as desired.

A wide selection of classic American picnic fare by outstanding regional vendors, along with beer, wine and other beverages, will be available. Guests are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs, and may bring sun umbrellas to set around the edges of the seating area.

A Brass-tastic Weekend

Additional Gettysburg Festival brass performances include:

  • Brass on the Square, 6-8pm, June 15 in front of the Gettysburg Hotel in Lincoln Square. Enjoy the music, while strolling through the Square watching downtown scenes come to life on artists’ canvases, as part of the Quick Draw a new Festival event, taking place simultaneously. The Quick Draw is a timed competition, after which work is judged, prizes awarded, and work will be immediately included in a “wet sale.” Prizes for this event were generously donated by ACNB and Blick Art Materials.
  • Wildcat Regiment Band, a Civil War period band, performs on June 16 at 2 pm at the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center and at the Pennsylvania Monument at 6 pm.

Support for Brass Music

Generous support for the 2012 All American Brass Picnic is provided by Dr Pepper Snapple and by Gen On, and by the Ben Jones’ Tuba Open Golf Brass Benefit. This golf tournament, organized to support brass programming, will be played Thursday, June 14 at Mountain View Golf Club. For more information and registration contact Ben Jones at or 334 7719.

All 2012 Festival brass performances are free and open to the public; however, tickets to the All-American Brass Picnic are required for entry. Visit to obtain your free ticket. Donations are graciously accepted at the Picnic, so that this free, quality programming may continue.

Beech Springs Farm is one of the most picturesque corners of Adams County – and on Friday, May 18, it will be transformed into Provence for an evening. In partnership with gracious hosts Jayne and Bill Shord, Walter Scheib, former White House Chef, designed and will host this glorious evening, featuring an exquisite French-inspired menu, live music and a one-of-a-kind auction. The Festival’s premier culinary partner, Chef Claude Rodier of the Wyndham Gettysburg, drew on his French training and heritage to create the evening’s exquisite menu, which will be served alfresco in the lush gardens of Beech Springs Farm. The menu includes such mouthwatering delicacies as:

  • Pissaladiere Nicoise
  • Heirloom Tomato Salad with Tuna in Olive Oil and Nicoise Olives
  • Steamed Mussels with Fennel and Saffron
  • Roasted Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb with Rosemary Jus
  • Whole Roasted Free Range Chicken with Rosemary and Citrus
  • Roasted Baby Potatoes with Garlic, Thyme and Rosemary
  • “Petit Farcis Nicois” Small Stuffed Vegetables

The desserts, of course, will be heavenly, including Chocolate “Pot De Crème”, Seasonal Fresh Fruit Tart, Authentic Napoleon, Lemon Tart from Menton, and the unusual Swiss Chard Tort with Raisins and Pine Nuts. Beer, wine, and signature cocktail are included in the ticket price of $125 per person and $200 per couple. An auction will enliven the evening, while raising funds to support the celebration of American arts and culture. Culinary items on the block will include White House Dinner for 10 with former White House Chef Walter Scheib; Eastern Shore Dinner for 6 with Gettysburg College President Janet Morgan and Ed Riggs; Wine Tasting for 8 at the home of Monica Oss and Jay Mackie; Italian Dinner for 6 with Edie Jardine and Dan Mangan; and a Cooking Class for 6 at The Stone Kitchen. With so many great artists associated with the Festival, there will be a feast of visual art available for bidding:

  • Art Lover’s Package, including Alum House, original art by Plein Air Artist Ann Crostic, two tickets to the Edible Art Tour and a copy of Pleasure Palaces, the Art and Homes of Hunt Slonem.
  • “Winter’s Warriors”, an original colored pencil drawing by Amy Lindenberger, rendered in a range of French Grays and depicting  a portion of the monument of the 13th Massachusetts Volunteers, and behind the monument, an old oak tree.
  • “Lincoln Riding the Circuit”, an original oil painting by Lincoln artist Wendy Allen. Lincoln spent most of his legal career in the saddle, riding the Eighth Judicial Circuit, covering thousands of prairie miles and watching thousands of sunsets over vast open landscapes.  Lincoln always said these were the happiest years of his life.
  • “Floral Study in Azure and Violet”, First Edition Photograph by Dan Mangan. This faux color, impressionist pastel of wild florals was filmed in late October stimulating the senses with its soft colorization. This signed, limited edited photograph is on canvas, framed, and measures 26̎ x 18̎ wide.
  • Handmade Braided Rug by Catharine Roth, a native of Orrtanna who learned the art of rug braiding from her mother and various mentors.  She is a musician, viticulturist and writer, and is presently a gardener at Beech Springs Farm, which was her family home for many years.  Catharine’s hand braided rugs are constructed from recycled materials, primarily woolens.  The dimensions for the rug donated by Catharine are 3′ x 4′ and the primary colors are maroon, black and gray.

Supporters will also be able to bid on a Philadelphia Getaway, a Weekend Package in New Oxford, and two V.I.P. tickets, including two orchestra seats and a meet and greet with Lily Tomlin on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 3 p.m. at the Majestic Theater in Gettysburg. This event is sure to be an unforgettable evening – concluding with a spectacular sunset view. Tickets are still available, and all of funds raised support the wonderful Festival programming, more than half of which is free!

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If You Decide to Go…
Sunset Garden Party
Beech Springs Farm, Orrtanna
Friday, May 18, 2012
5:30 – 8:30 pm
$125 pp/$200 couple

RSVP by May 11. Dress is business/casual, but in true “garden party” style, ladies are welcome to wear hats.

For more information on Gettysburg Festival events including tickets:, 717-334-0853.

By Karen Hendricks, PR/Marketing Director

In 1963, the all-girl band The Angels charted a number one hit that you probably recognize–“My Boyfriend’s Back.”  One of their follow-up 45s included the B-side “Thank You and Goodnight” which turned out to be a surprise hit.  Classic American 50s and 60s music is full of colorful and fascinating trivia!

But “Thank You and Goodnight” is exactly what we said to about 150 guests who attended the Festival’s recent Sock Hop at the Wyndham Gettysburg.  Chef Claude Rodier knocked the socks off our Sock Hop attendees with a fabulous menu, in cooperation with our beloved former White House Chef Walter Scheib, Artistic Director for the Festival’s Culinary Arts Events.

An All-American Classic: Cheeseburger Sliders by Chef Claude Rodier

The doo-wop group Chromed Classics also charmed guests and set the musical tone for the evening:

We also thank Battlefield Harley-Davidson for their generous gift of a shiny 2012 Harley-Davidson Dyna Bob, as many guests purchased raffle tickets to try their luck at winning this fabulous motorcycle.  Stay tuned, as the winner will be pulled during the June 9 Blues, Beer & BBQ event.

But perhaps the real star of the evening was the fabulous Hagerstown-based dance group, the Hub City Lindy Hop.  Entertaining DJ Bob Mathers was spinning toe-tapping tunes, and they did not miss a beat.

Thanks also go out to:  Mr. Ed of Mr. Ed’s Elephant Museum & Candy Emporium for his generous gift of nostalgic candy, including Mary Jane’s, and Mari Killian and friends from Just Shoot Us Now for bringing their unique photo booth.

We are especially thankful to guests who took time to write or call expressing their appreciation for the themed evening.  The following message is just one example:

“…a quick note to let you know how much we enjoyed the Sock Hop last Saturday night. From beginning to end, this was the best dance of its type that we have attended. The venue, the dance floor, the music, the food and the entertainment as a whole made for a perfect night of fun and dance. We hope that this event was a successful fund raiser for your organization and we look forward to your future events this summer.”

Again, “Thank You and Goodnight”—but only until our next Festival event, around the corner!  Save the date of May 18 for our next themed fundraiser event, a Sunset Garden Party, and of course save the dates of June 8-17 with plenty of fun programming made possible by generous contributions from Friends of the Festival and fundraising events, with the emphasis on FUN, such as the Sock Hop!

To enjoy a photo album from the Sock Hop click here.

By Karen Hendricks, PR/Marketing Director

If you don’t know the term “sock hop,” chances are you’re relatively young.  We’ve been asked the question, “What is a sock hop?” at the Festival office quite a bit recently due to our upcoming “Festival Sock Hop: Kick off your Shoes & Kick the Winter Blues” on March 3.

In the 50s and 60s, high school dances were traditionally held in a school gymnasium or cafeteria where floors sparkled with a smooth, varnished finish.  So teens were asked to take off their shoes, so as not to damage the surface, and dance in their socks.  Keep in mind, this was a time when teens wore what we now call “dress shoes” every day.  As sneakers and saddle shoes became popular, the rubber soles were not damaging to the floors, teens could dance in their shoes, and the term “sock hop” fell out of use.

Remember this dance scene from "Grease?"


But we thought it would be fun to bring back this theme and plan a sock hop based upon the great oldies music of the 50s and 60s.  The Festival’s premier culinary partner, The Wyndham Gettysburg including 1863 Restaurant, has designed a playful menu brimming with popular 50s and 60s themed food.  Root beer floats, anyone?  Click here to see the full menu.

Bob Mathers

But the main ingredient on our Sock Hop menu is fun.  One of the area’s leading DJ’s specializing in oldies music– Bob Mathers–will be spinning tunes to set your toes tapping.  Bob has worked with such legendary icons as Buddy Deane, host of Baltimore’s Buddy Deane Show.  This teenage dance show was the inspiration and basis for the movie/musical Hairspray.  Bob will also entertain you with fun 50s/60s trivia and a few contests along the way.  (Hint:  you may want to watch the following YouTube clip which shows you the nifty steps to “Dancin’ the Madison.”)



What a fun era to revisit, including classic and nostalgic tunes such as “In the Still of the Night” (The Five Satins), “The Way You Do the Things You Do (The Temptations), “The Wanderer” (Dion), “Earth Angel” (The Penguins; also recorded by The Crew Cuts and many others), Johnny B. Goode (Chuck Berry), and many more.  

There are a limited number of Sock Hop tickets available – click here to learn more about the event & reserve your tickets today.

It doesn’t matter if you lived through the 50s/60s or not – come as you are or jump into your saddle shoes and poodle skirt, or your black leather jacket and rolled-up jeans and “Let’s Go to the Hop!”


Feel free to leave a post here on our blog, and tell us about your favorite 50s/60s tunes–cool beans!

By Mary Beth Brath, Co-Coordinator, Artist Colony and Plein Air Paint Out

From a painter’s perspective, Gettysburg literally offers endless vistas.  Coupled with the history and beauty of the region, there is limitless inspiration as well.  It’s no wonder that artists participating in Gettysburg Festival events have become passionate about plein air (open air) painting.  As one of those artists, I’m grateful to be a part of the Festival’s planning for 2012 events, which has stirred up a multitude of fantastic memories for me personally.

In 2008, I remember painting at Spangler’s Spring during the first Festival Paint Out.  There was a re-enactment taking place in the distance but all was peaceful at the spring, located within the boundaries of the Gettysburg National Military Park.  As I painted, I could hear the distant sounds of the artillery fire.  It was a very emotional experience that completely “hooked me” regarding painting along the Battlefield Auto Tour and I have participated ever since. To see that life-changing painting, click here.

Artists from Maryland (south of the Mason-Dixon Line) and Pennsylvania (north of the Mason- Dixon Line) came together in 2009 to paint Gettysburg’s hallowed battlefield scenes.  Many strong friendships were forged and still exist today. The Plein Air Paint Out event, as part of the Gettysburg Festival lineup, had firm roots at this point.

2009 Plein Air Artists at Gettysburg Festival

In 2010 and 2011, the Artist Colony was held as a juried and residential experience at Gettysburg Festival.   Amazing Master Artists, Lisa Egeli (2010) and Bill Schmidt (2011) led workshops and helped me learn techniques I have now integrated into my daily painting.  Click here to see a YouTube video of the 2010 Artist Colony experience.  The Paint Out also continued, due to strong relationships among the artists and the popularity with the public.  We especially loved having interactions with the public, at our exhibit located at the Gettysburg Railroad Station, especially when they led to sales of our artwork (click here for a few photos!).  I was fully immersed and enriched by both experiences.

Master Artist Lisa Egeli paints on Lincoln Square, 2010 Artist Colony

Some of my fellow artists have also summarized what it’s like to paint in Gettysburg:

“The artists have inspired me, challenged me and nurtured me as an artist.  Last year (2010), this event was one of the best of my life.  It lived up to that lofty height again this year (2011).”

-Cindy Downs

“I was honored and privileged to have been one of the artists selected to participate in the inaugural Artist Colony at Gettysburg in 2010.  It was a wonderful experience that had a profound impact on my direction as an artist… I was so excited to have been selected again to participate in 2011; it was as though I won the lotto twice!… This year’s Colony experience was a very worthwhile experience which I will treasure.  I am very grateful to have been a part of this exceptional opportunity again for a second year and I wish for its continued success.”

-Ann Crostic

Click here to apply to Gettysburg Festival’s 2012 Artist Colony, Plein Air Paint Out or (new for 2012!) the Quick Draw.  I know artists who apply in 2012 will be embraced by the warm artist community that’s developed over the past four years.  Prepare yourself for an incredible experience!