Barbara Golden, Communications Manager for the St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra and the Beaches Visitors and Convention Bureau, reminds Historic City News readers who reside in St Johns County that admission is free of charge to the Oldest House, the Ximenez-Fatio House, the Oldest Wooden School House, City Walks History Mystery Murder Evening Tour and the Hotel Ponce de Leon Legacy Tours at Flagler College, with valid identification.
All Historic City News readers can take the daily tours and wine tastings at the San Sebastian Winery and St. Augustine Distillery. Also, admission is free at the Fort Matanzas National Monument, St. Photios Chapel, the Pena-Peck House, the Father Miguel O’Reilly Museum and the Mission Nombre de Dios Museum. Many other local attractions offer discounted admissions to St. Johns County residents, so be sure to ask.
Monday – Sunday, October 16 – 22
Dressing Downton: Changing Fashions for Changing Times Exhibition
Immerse yourself in fashion and history in this highly anticipated exhibition at the Lightner Museum.Dressing Downton™, a 13-week display of 36 authentic Victorian Era costumes and accessories from PBS’s most popular television drama in history, Downton Abbey®, will be elegantly displayed in the museum’s Grand Ballroom Gallery. The museum is open Sunday through Thursday from 9 a.m.-7 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for college students and seniors, $10 for 12-17 year olds, and free for youth under age 12. The ticket cost includes entry to the museum. There will be special Upstairs/Downstairs Tours and Afternoon Teas that take place daily during the exhibition.
High Tea at Cafe Alcazar
Immerse yourself with the full experience of the Dressing Downton exhibition with a special tea in the Cafe Alcazar located in the historic pool area of the Lightner Museum. The high teas will include sweet and savory items reminiscent of Gilded Age high style. Through January 7 teas will be at 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. Sunday–Thursday and 2 p.m. Friday–Saturday. Tickets are required.
Upstairs/Downstairs at the Alcazar Tours
The history of the Lightner Museum as well as its former splendor as the Alcazar Hotel shows many parallels to the time period and lives of the characters of the popular television series Downton Abbey®. This is a guided tour to areas of the museum typically closed to the public where participants will learn what life was like for both guests and staff who visited and worked at the Alcazar Hotel during the Gilded Age in St. Augustine. The tour lasts one hour and is in addition to the Dressing Downton exhibition and continues through January 7.
Monday – Saturday, October 16 – 21
Penumbra: The Space between Light and Dark
Experience this exhibition at The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach, which showcases the work of Julianne French, Debra Mixon Holliday and Masha Sardari. The artwork displayed by the three artists includes many mediums, such as photography, monochrome transfers and printmaking. Admission is free. The gallery is open Monday–Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Jacksonville Coalition of Visual Artists Exhibition
The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach hosts this exhibition of artwork by the Jacksonville Coalition of Visual Artists. Admission is free. The gallery is open Monday–Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Tuesday – Sunday, October 17 – 22
Fall Members Show
This juried exhibition at the St. Augustine Art Association showcases works created by the association’s members in various styles and media. The exhibition is free and open to the public through October 29. The gallery is open Tuesday to Saturday noon-4 p.m. and Sunday 2-5 p.m.
Aftermath: The Healing Power of Art Exhibition
The St. Augustine Art Association presents this special exhibition that opened on the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Matthew. The works on display are those created in response to the storm. The exhibition is free and open to the public through October 29 . The gallery is open Tuesday to Saturday noon-4 p.m. and Sunday 2-5 p.m.
Wednesday, October 18
River-to-Sea Preserve Guided Trail Walk
Take a free guided trail walk at the River-to-Sea Preserve and learn how Native Americans lived in the area. An interpretive guide will share information about the indigenous plants found throughout the trail. The trail is located on A1A south of the Town of Marineland, across from the ocean. The guide will begin the tour at 9 a.m. from the parking lot. Reservations are available.
Afternoon Insight: Sea Turtles
Hosted by the GTM Research Reserve, this month’s topic focuses on sea turtles. The talk is from 3-4 p.m. at the Environmental Education Center. Registration is available online. Admission is free.
St. Augustine Community Band Fall Concert
This performance opens the season for the St. Augustine Community Band, which will feature fine concert band music. The concert takes place at Pacetti Bay Middle School at 7:30 p.m. General admission is $15, student admission is $5 with ID, and admission for youth under age 12 is free.
Thursday, October 19
Throwback Thursday: Little Shop of Horrors
A nerdy florist finds his chance for success and romance with the help of a giant man-eating plant who demands to be fed. This film is showing at the Corazon Cinema and Cafe at noon. The cost is $10, which includes a lunch package and viewing of the movie.
Thursday – Saturday, October 19-21
Oldest City Red-Trout Classic
Participants guided by local professional captains enjoy two days of fishing for redfish and trout during this tournament organized by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The event begins on Thursday at the St. Augustine Rod & Gun Club,401 Gun Club Rd., with registration at 5:30 p.m., captain’s meeting at 6:15 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m. On Friday, there is a Blessing of the Fleet at 6:30 a.m.with the tournament starting at 7 a.m. and a dockside party at 3 p.m. On Saturday, the tournament begins at 7 a.m. with an awards reception at 3 p.m.
Thursday – Sunday, October 19-22
Free Kayak Trip at Moultrie Creek
Join St. Johns County Parks and Recreation for a free three-hour kayak trip along Moultrie Creek starting at the Moultrie Creek Boat Ramp. The trip is scheduled for 8 a.m. on Thursday, 9 a.m. on Friday, 10 a.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. on Sunday. During the trip, participants will learn about the area’s ecosystem, animals and history.
Friday & Saturday, October 20 & 21
Saint Benedict The Moor Blues Festival
This annual blues festival takes place at Saint Benedict the Moor Church. Enjoy great food and music from 4-10 p.m. on Friday and noon-10 p.m. on Saturday. Visit the website for the band schedule. Admission is $5.
Friday – Sunday, October 20-22
Sykes and Cooper Farms Corn Maze
Fall is in the air at Sykes and Cooper Farms. This family friendly event offers a corn maze, hayride, playgrounds, races and viewing of farm animals. The farm is open Friday 6-10 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-10 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. The last ticket sold is one hour prior to closing. General admission is $10, and admission for youth ages 2 and under is free.
Saturday, October 21
58th Annual Cracker Day
The St. Johns County Cattlemen’s Association is hosting this event at the St. Johns County Fairgrounds featuring horse games and food, including barbecue. Gates open at 6 a.m., and the event is from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission is $5 (cash only). Registration to compete in the horse games ranges from $15-$5. 904-209-0332 www.facebook.com/sjccattlemans
Tolomato Cemetery Guided Tour
Tour the oldest extant planned cemetery in Florida with burials starting during the First Spanish Period (1565-1763). Admission is free. Donations encouraged. Tours are from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Foster Shock at the Corazon Cinema and Cafe
This film takes a firsthand look at what happens to children when they are taken from their abusive families and become dependents of the State of Florida. Foster Shock examines Florida’s “privatized” foster care system. It explains the Community Based Care (CBC) concept: how CBC’s were designed to work for the child’s benefit and why they are off course. After the film, there will be a question and answer session with the director and local Guardian Ad Litem. This film is showing at the Corazon Cinema and Cafe at noon. Admission is free.
Black History Tour
You are invited to join St. Augustine Black Heritage Tours for a free walking tour of historical sites in St. Augustine where more than 400 years of African American history lives. A guide will take you to several locations that were significant to the Civil Rights Movement of St. Augustine, where you will hear stories and see history come alive as you follow in the footsteps of Dr. Martin Luther King and Andrew Young. You will also visit Lincolnville, established by freedmen following the American Civil War, which is now on the National Register of Historic Places. A visit to St. Augustine would be incomplete without exploring the rich African American Heritage that changed our nation’s history and inspired the world. This 1.5-hour tour departs from Tour Saint Augustine at 4 p.m. Advance reservations required; individual bookings only. 4 Granada St., St. Augustine 904-825-0087 www.staugustineblackheritagetours.com
Changing of the Guard
At 6 p.m., see history come to life when 18th century Spanish soldiers march down St. George Street from the Colonial Quarter to the Governor’s House Cultural Center & Museum where they perform authentic military drills before firing an exciting volley of musketry. The event features the St. Augustine Garrison.
Saint Anastasia Catholic Church Concert Series
This concert at Saint Anastasia Catholic Church features classical songs of love presented by Suzanne Nance and Curtis Powell. The concert is at 7 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are accepted.
4th Annual Haunted Masquerade Art Show
Enjoy an evening starting at 7 p.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Augustine Historic District for this art show that includes works by many Florida artists. The event also features music by Shea Birney and a performance by Blue Lotus World Dance Company. Attendees are encouraged to wear their best masquerade masks and dress to impress. Admission is $10.