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Colonial Night Watch
December 7 - December 8
This year’s premiere living history event, the Colonial Night Watch, will be held Friday December 6 and Saturday December 7, 2019. Friday evening, in conjunction with the National Park Service, the Saint Augustine Garrison will be participating in the “Enemy at the Gates” program at the Castillo de San Marcos. This special presentation with a very limited amount of tickets to be sold, takes visitors in small groups through various vignettes portraying historical events during the siege of 1740 in St. Augustine. As you walk around a lantern and torch lite Castillo, you may see Oglethorpe and his commanders discussing the siege, soldiers in the ravelin (fortified entrance area) discussing rumors for the impending attack, reports from the Indian allies of the Spanish on the conditions at Fort Mose, discussions on the dwindling supply situation at Castillo, reports from the Engineering Officer, a medical station, and troops preparing for a surprise attack on Fort Mose. National Park Service admission applies for this event.
Saturday December 7. This day long event, starting at 10:00am, will feature Spanish, British, and Native American historians portraying events from the years 1739 through 1784. Join hundreds of costumed re-enactors from St. Augustine’s Colonial past at the Colonial Quarter on Saint George Street and the lawn of the Castillo de San Marcos. Soldiers will perform military drills and cannon and musket firing on the grounds of the Castillo and the Colonial Quarter. See a working blacksmith, a leather worker and pottery maker at the Colonial Quarter. The kids will enjoy making corn husk dolls, just as our Native Americans would have done hundreds of years ago. See our interpreters dance the Virginia Reel and join in if you would like. Chat with the re-enactors , ask questions about Saint Augustine’s storied past and take some photographs that will be treasured for years to come. The day’s activities will end with a torch light parade through the streets of Saint Augustine. The parade will start at 7:00pm from the grounds of the Castillo and proceed through the City Gates. The public is encouraged to follow the march (if you have a lantern bring it along) to the Plaza de Constitution and the Governor’s House. From the balcony the ceremonial Spanish Governor will greet and address the crowd. A brief ceremony will be followed by a massive musket volley. Following this “Volley of Joy” all those assembled are invited to ring in the Holiday Season with the singing of Christmas Carols. This is always a highlight of the evening and again a perfect spot for photographs.
Saturday’s events at the Colonial Quarter, and on the Castillo lawns are free of charge and open to the public. Start your Holiday Season with an event that will create lasting memories for the entire family.
You can set up either Thursday after 4:00 pm or Friday after 4:00 pm in the Colonial Quarter Museum. Drop off is at the museum gate on A1A opposite the Castillo de San Marcos. Teardown is Sunday morning. Suggested parking is in the public parking structure off of West Castillo Drive. Fires must be contained in a metal pit. Bring your own wood. Plenty of restaurants so cook only if you wish. Friday Night the National Park Service will host “Enemy at the Gates,” an evening event at the Castillo. We always need 4 to 6 ranges to support that activity. It starts around 6:30 pm and ends at 9:30 pm. Saturday, is a busy day. We will have events both at the Castillo and the Museum all day. The “Volley of Joy” will happen with a procession from the fort to the town center around 6:30 pm Saturday. Afterwards, there will be a Jollification at the museum. This is a ticketed event. You should have preregistered for Night Watch on the https://hfm.club/ event website. The HFM website contains all registration forms and event rules.
If you are new to this event, the annual St. Augustine Christmas parade is Saturday morning and the town is packed. Plan on coming in Friday.
All Registration information and forms can be found HERE.