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Historic Activities at Centreville Day

Centreville, one of the oldest settlements in Fairfax County, is celebrating Centreville Day, Saturday, Sept. 16. This family-oriented festival features a parade, children's games, rides and activities, great food, an open-air marketplace with crafters and the following events celebrating Centreville's history:

* Friday, Sept. 15 at 6:30 p.m., St. John's Church

"Tales from the Blanket, Stories from Olde Centreville" — A light-hearted look at Centreville's rich history. Includes a period dinner and a display of Mildred DeBell's collection of Centreville memorabilia. Tickets are $14. Call Cheryl Repetti at 703 830-5407 to make reservations; tickets can also be purchased at the door.

<sh>Saturday, Sept. 16 Events

<lst>* 1-1:30 p.m., Old Stone Church (Church of the Ascension). Ribbon-cutting ceremony for Civil War Trails Sign. Chairman Gerry Connolly and Sully District Supervisor Michael Frey will cut the ribbon for Centreville's first Civil War Trails sign. The sign describes Centreville's important role in the opening of the Civil War.

* 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., Old Stone Church (Church of the Ascension). Tours of Centreville's Fortifications and Earthworks. Join Bull Run Civil War Roundtable President John McAnaw on an informative tour of Centreville's remaining Civil War forts and trenches. Centreville was the focal point of a system of Confederate earthworks that extended down to Manassas and which figured in the battles of Second Manassas-Ox Hill and Bristoe Station. Tours assemble at the Civil War Trails sign.

* 12 p.m., Showmobile; 2 and 4 p.m. Mount Gilead Lawn. Sword masters of the 18th Century

Demonstrations of the art of fencing by masters of 18th C swordplay by the Living History Foundation. George Washington took lessons like these when he was a young man, so can you!

* 2:30 and 4:30 p.m., Mount Gilead Lawn

English Country Dancers. Enjoy the color, grace, and exuberance of "country" dancing from the 18th Century by the Living History Foundation.

Saturday, Sept. 16 Through-Out the Day

* Old Stone Church — Tours of the church and other activities. Originally constructed in 1855 and rebuilt in the years following the war, the church stands at the historic intersection of Braddock Road and Warrenton Turnpike. It served as a hospital during the First and Second Battles of Manassas.

* St. John's Church — A Century of Centreville. An exhibit of Mildred Debell's family collection of Centreville memorabilia dating back more than a century, from the early 19th through the early 1960s. Posters, photograph albums, newspapers clippings, and more.

Tours of the church and other activities. Originally constructed in 1850 and rebuilt in the years following the war. The church may have served as a hospital during the Civil War. The cemetery includes graves of Confederate soldiers and early residents of Centreville.

* Historic Centreville Society. Copies of books by local historians Lee Minnis and Karl Reiner will be offered for sale. Information about the Society and Centreville history.

* Bull Run Civil War Roundtable. Is Centreville an ideal location for a heritage park? Map of Centreville in relation to other Civil War sites in the region.

Mount Gilead — Collecting Centreville History. Park Authority staff will be collecting your remembrances of Mt. Gilead and Centreville. Memories of any special or everyday occurrences, chores, school days, people who lived or worked nearby, local businesses and churches, community events, etc. are welcome. Also, any object, photographs, documents, or the like that people would be willing to bring to be photographed and scanned. For further information contact Park Authority Museum Collections: 703-631-1429.

* Tours of the Mount Gilead House. Built as an inn ca. 1785, the house was the residence of the Jamesson family through most of the 19th century. Docents provided by the Historic Centreville Society.

* Mount Gilead Exhibition on the Porch. The Park Authority presents a wonderful collection of images and information about Mount Gilead and its history. Information about the park master planning process will also be on display.

* Bees, Hoops and Carpenters. E.C. Lawrence Park will have bees and comb honey to cut up for people, volunteers to help kids with rolling hoops, and demonstrations of period woodworking.

* Company D, 17th Virginia, CSA Encampment. More than 40,000 Confederate soldiers encamped in and near Centreville during the winter of 1861-1862, come speak to the re-enactors of the 17th Virginia and learn what the life of a Civil War soldier was like.

* Centreville Historic District — Take a self-guided walking tour of the Centreville Historic District. Interpreters will be available at various locations including the site of Mohler House and Newgate Tavern, the Spindle's Sears House. Mount Gilead, St. John's, the Old Stone Church.