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June 22, 2011

Victorian Shadowlight Theater New For Families This Summer at Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg

Programs at the Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg introduce young guests to Colonial Williamsburg’s museum collections and allow them to explore folk art and decorative arts.

New this summer is “Victorian Shadowlight Theater: The Pied Piper.” The program offers original stories that are brought to life with a costumed storyteller, shadow puppeteers, music, lighting and sound effects, and takes place 2:30 and 4 p.m. Sundays through Aug. 7.

  • During “Explore the Declaration of Independence” families learn about the exciting events leading up to the Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution, and then create a souvenir to take home. The program is at 1:45 p.m. on Mondays through Aug. 15.
  • Young guests learn about real secret codes and ciphers used by George Washington and other leaders during the American Revolution. Visitors can try their hands at cracking a code using a spy technique they’ve learned. The program, “Crack the Code,” is for ages eight and older at 4 p.m. on Mondays through Aug. 15. A free reservation is required for this program on July 4.
  • “Scherenschnitte…What’s That?” introduces families to the German art of scissor cutting. Guests can snip out simple silhouettes to more intricate designs that mirror the designs of Swiss and German immigrants in the 18th and 19th centuries. The program begins at 10:30 a.m. on Mondays through Aug. 15.
  • Families can become true artists thanks to “Folk Art Afternoons.” Guests can drop in and create their own folk art object to take home between 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. on Tuesdays through Aug. 16.
  • Coats of arms are the focus of the program, “Heraldry.” Following a guided tour of the galleries, kids learn the meaning behind the symbols and then illustrate a book to take home. This program is recommended for children ages eight and up. The program starts at 1:45 p.m. on Tuesdays through Aug. 16.
  • “Material World” explores the world of art through the eyes of a conservator. Hands-on activities are designed to help children see how interconnected science and art truly are. The program is at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesdays through Aug. 31.
  • “When Insects Invade: The Unwanted Museum Visitor” illustrates how museum conservators deal with bugs in museums and the harm they can cause. Families can participate in this program at 10:30 a.m. Thursdays through Aug. 25.
  • At “Abby’s Art at Bassett Hall” guests can tour the Williamsburg home of John D. Rockefeller Jr. and his wife Abby Aldrich Rockefeller. After observing the folk art in the home, family members can create their own piece to take home. The program takes place on Thursdays through Sept. 1 from 10 a.m.- noon.
  • “Accessorize!” examines true 18th- and 19th-century fashion. Guests can tour the exhibit, “Fashion Accessories from Head to Toe,” and participate in a hands-on activity that follows. The program is at 10:45 a.m. Fridays through Aug. 19.
  • “Folk Art for Families” introduces young and old to whimsical and imaginative folk art, followed by an opportunity to make a piece of folk art to take home. The tour is offered at 1:45 p.m. on Fridays through Aug. 19.
  • Families can take a guided tour through the galleries where their mission is to find objects associated with ancient myths and legends during “Mission Mythology!” Young guests ages eight and above can participate in the program at 4 p.m. on Fridays through Aug. 19.
  • During “Art Stop,” young guests drop in and create a work of art inspired by objects in the collection. Families can drop in between 10:30 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. on Saturdays through Aug. 20.

    All programs and exhibitions at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum are supported by the DeWitt Wallace Endowment.

    A Colonial Williamsburg admissions ticket, museum pass or Good Neighbor card provides access to these tours.

    The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg include the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum and the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum. The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum is home to the nation’s premier collection of American folk art, with more than 5,000 folk art objects made during the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. The DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum exhibits the best in British and American decorative arts from 1670–1830.

    The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg are located at the intersection of Francis and South Henry Streets in Williamsburg, Va., and are entered through the Public Hospital of 1773. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday through March 13. On March 14, museum hours will be 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. For museum program information, telephone (757) 220-7724.

    The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational and cultural organization that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s website at

    Media Contact:
    Penna Rogers
    (757) 220-7121

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