Participants in a past year’s Port Townsend Victorian Festival gather for High Tea at the Commander’s Beach House. (Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News)

Participants in a past year’s Port Townsend Victorian Festival gather for High Tea at the Commander’s Beach House. (Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News)

Victorian Heritage Festival celebrates Port Townsend’s roots

PORT TOWNSEND — Hoop skirts and handlebar moustaches will be in fashion this weekend as the 23rd annual Victorian Heritage Festival gets underway at venues throughout downtown today through Sunday.

“We are doing less in the way of lectures and focusing on more participatory events this year,” said Jason Pageau, of Swashbuckle Industries, which is producing the event.

“We want to get into history.”

A Grand Victoria Pass will allow access to all programs except high teas and building tours. The pass is $29.95.

The Grand Victoria Pass and tickets for individual events can be purchased online at http://2019.vicfest.org/. Fees are charged for ordering tickets online.

This evening, Victorian ladies and gents 21 and older will meet old and new friends at a reception with a staffed bar at the Cotton Building, 607 Water St., from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tickets are $5 per person.

Beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, area artists Erica Heins and Chris Mendez will unveil new paintings inspired by Victorian literature at an art exhibition at the Hastings Building, 839 Water St.

Merchants Square, featuring a selection of Victorian items, will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. there.

At 11:30 a.m., a Garden Party is planned at the American Legion Hall, 209 Monroe St. This traditional social event will feature authentic historical entertainment and pastimes.

Tickets are $10 per person.

Pageau said in the event of inclement weather, the event will be held inside and will become a “Conservatory Party.”

On Saturday beginning at 1 p.m., the town’s historic Victorian buildings will be featured on walking tours at 1 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday.

“We will be giving tours of the historic building tours through the Jefferson County Historical Society,” Pageau said.

”One of the highlights will be a look at the upper interior floors of the Hastings Building. It is rarely accessible.”

Tickets are $12.95 each.

A Victorian Fashion Show is planned at 4 p.m. at the American Legion Hall. It will feature Victorian garments from around the nation. Tickets are $5 per person.

The Grand Victorian Ball, held Saturday evening at the American Legion Hall, will begin at 7 p.m. Authentic dress is encouraged. A live band will offer both called dance,s to make it easy for everyone to participate, and uncalled dances, for those who want to dance as couples. Tickets are $15 each.

On Sunday, the Merchants Square will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and historic building tours will be offered at 11 a.m.

High Teas are sold out at the Old Consulate Inn at 313 Walker St. The Commander’s Beach House at 400 Hudson St., still on Thursday had openings on Saturday, with seatings for a maximum of 14 people each set for 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Advance reservations are required and can be made up to early evening today. Tickets are $40 per person and can be purchased online at 360-808-0347.

For more information, see http://2019.vicfest.org/.

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