7th Annual French Heritage Day Celebration in Vergennes

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7th Annual French Heritage Day Celebration in Vergennes


Free, family-friendly event recognizes region’s French-Canadian heritage

Vergennes, Vermont – June 25, 2012 – The Addison County Chamber of Commerce, with the support of individual and business sponsors, is hosting French Heritage Day on Saturday, July 14th in Vergennes. The event celebrates the area’s French-Canadian heritage, but can be enjoyed by all, regardless of family descent. Full details of the event and a schedule of activities are available at www.frenchheritageday.com.

Activities on Saturday, July 14th run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Vergennes City Park is hosting day-long activities featuring colorful re-enactors, Franco-American music, French-Canadian fiddling, response songs, a native American storyteller, horse and carriage rides, step-dancing, fencing demonstrations, French food, and traditional craft demonstrations such as spinning, weaving, rug hooking, rag rug making, crocheting, knitting, chair caning and rush weaving, and basket making. Exhibits will range from French artistry, to historical information and tools, to antique vehicles and engines.

Hands-on fun includes pumping water, making rope, old-time games and children’s activities such as “Les Chapeaux,” a puppet theater. Trace your roots with the Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society or practice your French with any number of people including participating local French conversational groups. Visit with Samuel de Champlain (re-enacted by Don Thompson) who will provide a first-person historical interpretation using maps, trade goods and navigational equipment.
At Bixby Library view the Comte de Vergennes Historical Presentation Box of letters, pictures, and more which was compiled and sent to Versailles, France in March 2012 in commemoration of the Comte’s 250th anniversary.

Performances at the Vergennes bandstand include the Fiddleheads, Gitane (gypsy) duo Lausanne Labombarde and Rick Ceballos, Va-et-Vient, and Erik & Ericka Andrus. Tim Perron will perform a piano concert at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in the afternoon. At 2 p.m. there will be the French Heritage Day Waiter’s Races for professionals, amateurs, adult waiters & children waiters. 

French Heritage Day closes Saturday night (4-6 p.m.) with a Veillée (pronounced “vay yea”), a traditional French Canadian supper (served 5-6 p.m.), held under tents in City Park. Franco-American musicians, Voulez-Vous Danser (Do You Want to Dance), will be providing music along with square/round dancing with instruction. Admission buttons are $15 per person and are available at Everywear for Everybody and Linda’s Apparel & Gifts in Vergennes or by contacting the Chamber at 388-7951. Show your admission button and receive discounts at several area businesses on Friday and Saturday, July 13-14.

At dusk the Otter Creek Falls will be lighted and can be viewed nightly through August 26th.

French Heritage Days is held with the support of many sponsors: 3 Squares Café, Addison County Chamber of Commerce, Addison Outfitters, American Legion, Black Sheep Bistro, Café Provence, Carl Cole Realty, LLC, City of Vergennes, Dorchester Lodge #1, Everywear for Everybody, Good Companion Bakery, J.W. & D.E. Ryan, Inc., Linda’s Apparel and Gifts, Lisa Sprague, Maple Landmark Woodcraft, Merchants Bank, Nathaniel Group, National Bank of Middlebury, Pomerleau Real Estate, The Clock Shop, Tourterelle Restaurant, Vergennes Animal Hospital.

For a full schedule of events, visit the event website at www.frenchheritageday.com. For more information call 802-388-7951 or email marguerite@addisoncounty.com   

About Addison County Chamber of Commerce

The Addison County Chamber of Commerce (ACCOC) is an association of individuals representing business interests, working together to promote commercial business and tourism in Addison County. The Chamber can be found on the Web at www.addisoncounty.com.


Media Inquiries:

Sue Hoxie
Addison County Chamber of Commerce
93 Court Street
Middlebury VT  05753
p: 802-388-7951
e: sue@addisoncounty.com

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