PLEASANT HILL — A month’s worth of events are on tap this year at Shaker Village.
The Danville Garden Club has decorated the site this year with more than 150 holiday swags, wreaths and garlands of fresh greenery and red ribbon. A 31-foot Norway Spruce will light up at dusk, with the numerous luminaries that glow along the village paths.
Special “Illuminated Evenings” are scheduled every Saturday. Holiday teas are planned every Friday and Saturday throughout December. The Jingle Bell Shuttle will run daily.
Here’s a look at some of the offerings in December at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill:
Holidays at Shaker Village
Holiday Buffet Lunches: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. daily; $25/adults, $12.95/ages 12 and under. Reservations required; (800) 734-5611, ext. 360. The changing menu includes salads, selections of entrees, casseroles, vegetables, warm breads and our favorite desserts. Dining guests receive complimentary Christmas tours and music as well as a 10 percent discount at the shops, with receipt.
Teas: 2:30-4 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays beginning Friday; $11.95. Reservations required; (800) 734-5611, ext. 360. Menu includes baked scones as well as assorted homemade sweets and savories.
Jingle Bell Shuttle: 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. daily; free. Visitors can ride in a horse-drawn wagon down the village road.
Daily Christmas Tours and Music: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; $7/ages 13 and up, $3/ages 6-13, free/5 and under. For the Shakers, Christmas was a day of reconciliation, forgiveness and charity. It was a time for giving and forgiving. The Shakers were always conscious of their duty to those less fortunate than themselves. Each Christmas, members of the Society contributed items to the “poor boxes,” which would be packed with clothing, food, and other useful household items.
Shaker Christmas Traditions: Guided Tour of Centre Family, 1:30-2:15 p.m. daily. The guided tour through Centre Family explores 19th-century Shaker Christmas customs.
Holiday Music Performances,| Meeting House : 11 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Soloists will perform holiday music at the Centre Family Dwelling.
Textile exhibit , “Golden Threads: The Stories Behind the Needle”: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily, entrance in back of East Family Dwelling. This exhibit displays silk scarves and folk art rugs that dispel the myth of the Shakers as drab.
Other special holiday programming
The Pleasant Hill Singers present “Christmas in the Shaker Spirit,” 1 and 3 p.m. Saturday, Meeting House. Included with regular tour admission. The story of how the Shakers celebrated Christmas is presented in choral performances. Afterward, visitors can help decorate the Christmas tree.
Learn How to Make a Living Herb Wreath, 2-3:15 p.m. Saturday, 8 and 15, Carpenters’ Shop Craft Store. Included with regular tour admission. Sponsored by the Danville Garden Club.
“Illuminated Evenings,” 4-8:30 p.m. Saturdays in December, $5/ages 13 and older with canned good, free/12 and younger. Canned good donations will be given to The Christian Life Center in Harrodsburg, Kentucky.
A Shaker Christmas by Candlelight, 4, 4:30, 5, 5:30 and 6 p.m. Saturdays in December, Centre Family Dwelling. Visitors can take a lantern-lit tour of the Centre Family Dwelling and learn about Shaker Christmas customs of donating to the needy, singing, cooking and decorating. Guided tours only. Centre Family Dwelling will not be open for self-guided tours.
Mrs. Claus’ Workshop, 4-6 p.m. Saturdays in December, Farm Deacon’s Shop. Shaker children celebrated by decorating Christmas trees with popcorn strings and paper chains, by exchanging gifts and visits from Santa. Visitors can make ornaments to decorate the village’s tree or take home.
Lighting of the Tree and Storytelling with Mrs. Claus, 7-7:30 p.m. Saturdays in December, beginning next to Centre Family Dwelling. Mrs. Claus will be available for photos after storytelling; bring camera.
Schedule of live music
5:45-6:45 p.m., The Brotherhood Singers, Meeting House. The Brotherhood Singers is a jubilee-style, a cappella, sacred gospel quartet from Covington.
7:30-8:30 p.m., Community Christmas Caroling , after lighting of Christmas tree.
4:30 – 5:30 University of Kentucky Black Voices, Meeting House. The UK Black Voices is a university-sponsored student gospel music ensemble under the direction of Dr. Everett McCorvey, Director of UK Opera Theatre
6-7 p.m.: Carillon Handbell Choir, Meeting House. Lexington’s Second Presbyterian Church’s handbell choir, directed by Donna Phillips, will perform seasonal music.
4:00 – 5:00 The Bluegrass Dulcimers | Meeting House
The Appalachian Dulcimer was designated as the official musical instrument of Kentucky in 2001. Join the Bluegrass Dulcimers for holiday music, singing and toe tapping fun.
4-6 p.m.: Madison Community Band, next to the Centre Family Dwelling. A holiday concert will be presented by Madison County’s community band, under the direction of John Stroube.
*Other seasonal music is scheduled throughout the evenings.