Events in Beaufort, Hilton Head Island, and Bluffton.
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2021 Historic Holidays on Hilton Head Island
December 4, 2021 @ 10:00 am - December 11, 2021 @ 4:00 pm
Saturday, December 4: Gullah Market at Lowcountry Celebration Park, curated by Gullah Celebration. Featuring entertainment by Louise Cohen of the Gullah Museum of Hilton Head Island, Aunt Pearlie Sue, Ring Shouters, and Deaz Guyz! 11am – 5pm, Visit https://www.gullahcelebration.com to purchase tickets.
Saturday, Sunday and Monday, December 4-6: Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park’s Drive-Through Holiday Light Display. Begins at dusk each night. This is a drive through experience of lights in the heart of Historic Mitchelville. Free and open to everyone, registration is requested. 226 Beach City Road.
Tuesday, December 7: Colonial Christmas at Zion Chapel of Ease Cemetery. 4:00 – 5:30 pm. Tour the cemetery and learn about what Christmas was like during the colonial era on Hilton Head Island. Meet living history characters and hear from them what holidays were like in the past. Cost $5 per adult, children are free. At the intersection of Mathews Drive, Folly Field Road and US 278.
Thursday, December 9: A Soldier’s Holiday at Ft. Mitchel. 4:00 – 5:30 pm. Tour this Civil War era fort and learn about what the holidays were like for the soldiers serving here during the Civil War. $5 per adult, Children are free. Located in Hilton Head Plantation at 65 Skull Creek Drive – gates passes are available.
Saturday, December 11: Walking tour – Historic Corridor. 9:30 – 11:30 am. This is a 2 & ½ mile walk that starts and ends at Mitchelville and includes Queen Chapel AME Church, Cherry Hill School, Ft. Howell and Mitchelville Freedom Park. No charge for this event but registration is required. Participants should wear comfortable shoes, bring water and be prepared to walk 2 ½ miles. Free and open to everyone, registration is required. 226 Beach City Road.
Saturday, December 11: Historic Sites Open House. 1:00 – 4:00 pm. Visitors will step back in time with Hilton Head Island’s rich cultural history on full display as they enjoy each site at their leisure. The sites chosen show the different eras of Hilton Head History. Hear stories of our past from docents and living history characters, learn about the holidays on Hilton Head from the colonial period through Reconstruction, and the many Gullah traditions that make our island such a special place. Don’t forget the Camilla Gardens and other wonderful sites at Coastal Discovery Museum traditions of the Holidays of season’s past on Hilton Head Island. Free and open to everyone, registration is required.
Open sites on December 11th include:
Fort Mitchel: A Civil War Union coastal defense battery site built 1861-62. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Located in Hilton Head Plantation at 65 Skull Creek Drive – gates passes are available.
Fort Howell: This fort was built by the 32nd US Colored Infantry during the Civil War as protection for Mitchelville. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, Undergrounds Railroad Network to Freedom, and the Civil War Discovery Trail.
160 Beach City Road.
Gullah Museum of Hilton Head Island: Restored house exhibiting day-to-day life in a farming and bartering community and dedicated to preserving Gullah customs, language, traditions, stories, and songs.
12 Georgianna Drive (off Gumtree road).
Coastal Discovery Museum: Learning center with programs & walks on 68 coastal acres with historic buildings, trees & wildlife. A Smithsonian Affiliate.
70 Honey Horn Drive.
Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park: The site of the first self-governed town of formerly enslaved people. A site on the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom.
226 Beach City Road.
Zion Chapel of Ease Cemetery: Colonial-era cemetery and mausoleum including 4 grave markings of American Revolutionary War Patriots. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and S. C. Liberty Trail.
At the intersection of Mathews Drive, Folly Field Road, and US 278.
Presented by The Heritage Library and cultural partners, Gullah Celebration, Culture HHI, The Coastal Discovery Museum, The Gullah Museum of Hilton Head Island, Hilton Head Island Land Trust, Mitchelville Freedom Park, and the Town of Hilton Head Island, Historic Holidays is a reason for every history lover to celebrate this season.