If you are interested in history, the early beginnings of America and Native Americans, there is an outdoor living history museum in your backyard. Chester is home to Henricus Historical Park, which has been re-creating a 1611 Citie of Henricus, 1611-1622, the London Company’s second English settlement in the Virginia Colony over the last several years.
With the construction of 12 recreated colonial structures and the recreated Arrohatech Indian Village, with two Indian long-houses or “yehakins” lined with fur blankets and many traditional Indian artifacts, the park is ready to compete and build its reputation on the national level for tourism.
For locals, the treasure offers an interactive working settlement that continues to evolve; offering more events, camps for children and educational programs for schools. Many patrons return often to experience the changes in the park and participate in the daily activities to keep the park alive. The history of the park is demonstrated through “hands-on” encounters with period dressed historical interpreters. Visitors interact with interpreters during which time visitors may be asked to assist with cooking, blacksmithing, planting or harvesting. Visitors may even be asked to join the militia.
Last Saturday was Henricus Family Day. Families experienced stationed activities, demonstrations and crafts revolving around Colonial-era fields, gardens and domesticated animals.
There is a daily admission fee, which, for a family of five, could be as much as $36. For locals, the best way is to become a patron. Donor levels start at $35 for individuals and goes up to the $1,000 level. An attractive level for a family may be the Alexander Whitaker Family Club, which is $75 per year and gives you two adults and up to six children admission fees that can be used any day the park is open and as many times as you would like to visit. The membership also gives members discounts on camp programs, gift shop purchases, and free admission to park events.
For more information visit www.henricus.org.