Rahway Museum To Host An Early American Holiday Celebration

RAHWAY—The Merchants and Drovers Tavern Museum Association (MDTMA) will be hosting their annual holiday candlelight evening tours, on Saturdays, Dec. 3 and 10, from 6 to 9 p.m. in the museum building located on the corner of St. Georges and Westfield Avenues in Rahway.

This year, as always the 215-year-old tavern building, housing the museum, will be decorated for the holidays as it might have been circa 1800. All the rooms will be aglow in candlelight, and live period music will entertain the evening’s guests with Christmas carols and 19th century holiday melodies. This program is open to the public and all ages are welcome. Directions to the museum can be found on the website: www.merchantsanddrovers.org.

This year’s celebration will feature the holiday music of nationally known musician and singer, Linda Russell. Russell entertains audiences with ancient carols, interwoven with Yuletide poems, folklore and even recipes. For 20 years she has been creating holiday magic at churches and historic sites throughout the U.S.

Museum Director Alex Shipley noted, “It’s a wonderful evening for families and individuals of all ages, and Linda’s music sets the perfect tone and mood. She always manages to get everyone to sing along and thoroughly enjoy the evening.”

The much anticipated holiday program is presented annually by the MDTMA to interpret and demonstrate how Christmas and New Year festivities might have been celebrated by travelers and local residents at a stagecoach inn during different periods of its historic existence in Rahway. Current day visitors can relax and enjoy the music, the food, the holiday atmosphere and feel as if they had stepped back in time to a Rahway of 200 years ago.

Visitors are also welcome to explore the 13 period-furnished rooms, plus a unique, interactive exhibit on the history of transportation in New Jersey. In addition to the festivities, the Museum Gift Shop will be open for the evening and visitors will find items such as home décor, crafts, holiday decorations, candles, pottery, furniture and the latest edition of the Lloyd Garrison Rahway series of Christmas cards. The shop, housed in the circa 1735 Terrill Tavern located behind the museum is open during museum hours through December to accommodate holiday shoppers.

Admission to either evening’s event is $8 for members and seniors, $10 for non-members, $5 for students and children under 5 are free. All tickets can be purchased at the door. The price includes hearty appetizers, beer, wine, cider and soft drinks. All proceeds from both evenings will benefit the continued restoration and interpretation of this 18th century landmark. For more information, call themuseum at 1-732-381-0441.

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