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Organizers ready for Founder’s Weekend in Ogdensburg

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Hollywood actor and Ogdensburg native Mark Valley is returning to the ranks at Founder’s Weekend, Ogdensburg’s French and Indian War re-enactment and colonial trade fair July 19 and 20 on Van Rensselaer (Lighthouse) Point.

Mr. Valley will join the French re-enactors in the daily battles against the English in the commemoration of the 1760 Battle of the Thousand Islands fought on the St. Lawrence opposite the Oswegatchie and at the siege of Fort Lévis at what is now Chimney Island.

“We are very pleased Mark can return to the color and pageantry of Founder’s Weekend,” said Barbara J. O’Keefe, president of the Fort la Présentation Association. “Mark, vice president of the fort association, has been a great supporter of the association’s continuing effort to construct the fort project.”

Land and water battles by re-enactors from the United States and Canada will feature in the Saturday and Sunday program.

The 18th-century style armed schooner La Revenante will join the fray on the water and be open to deck tours for Founder’s Day visitors.

An informative narration will lead into and through the land battles. Visitors can expect the unexpected when they visit the soldier and sailor encampments to talk with the living-history buffs that are very informative regarding our colonial past. They know the history not taught in schools.

Children can get right into the act at the children’s musters, marching, learning the musket drill and the tactics of the infantry line. There’ll be two on Saturday and one on Sunday. There will be scavenger hunts for children, too.

Also Saturday and Sunday there’ll be a talk on Native American culture.

Adults with an artistic interest can enjoy period songs both days and a Saturday demonstration of English country dance.

For a close look at 18th-century life, there will be a Saturday talk on fishing on the St. Lawrence and Great Lakes and another on life at sea.

The New York Council for the Humanities has funded 12 of the Weekend’s numerous presentations and displays on 18th-century weapons and clothes, bucket making and leather working, French folksongs and Iroquois history and lore, basket making and boat building, fishing and quilting.

“We strive to have a broad program with offerings for many tastes and interests,” said Mrs. O’Keefe. “There’ll be colonial trades, demonstrations and exhibits, military drills and perhaps unscripted skirmishes, so I encourage everyone to come out and enjoy the 18th century.”

The gate opens at 10 a.m. Admission is $7 for adults, $2 for children ages 7 to 17 and free for children 6 and under.

Sunday all children 12 and under are free when accompanied by an adult.

The complete schedule is online at www.fort1749.org.

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