Christmas truce, Geneva Lake shipwrecks, more in Black Point's winter series

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Staff | November 12, 2015

Black Point Estate is partnering with Horticultural Hall for a winter version of its popular “Veranda Views” program series. The historic house estate offered a Chautauqua style series that included history, art and music this past summer.

“The series was so successful that we decided to continue this type of programming in the winter season” said site director, Dave Desimone. “We have found that the residents of this area are very supportive of diverse cultural programs.”

Since Black Point is closed in the winter, the series will be held at Horticultural Hall in Lake Geneva.

The lineup for the winter season is as follows:

December 12: The World War One Christmas Miracle with Rochelle Pennington
Join nationally known, Wisconsin author and storyteller Rochelle Pennington as she discusses the factual account of the 1914 battlefield Christmas truce. The Christmas truce is the story of peace “breaking out” in wartime. Pennington's program will detail the amazing circumstances surrounding the 100,000 enemy combatants who “met in the middle” on Christmas day and halted the war. This truce is remembered today as the most extraordinary event in military history.

January 16: Shipwrecks of the Great Lakes and Geneva Lakes with Caitlin Zant
Over 750 ships have been lost in Wisconsin waters. Maritime Archaeologist Caitlin Zant will discuss some of her favorites, including the Lucius Newberry and Lady of the Lake; both on the bottom of Geneva Lake! This program will include photos and video of some amazing shipwrecks.

January 23: The Songs of Lincoln with Chris Vallillo
Abraham Lincoln's life spanned a period of great change, growth and struggle in our young nation, and the music of his era movingly characterizes these remarkable times. Chris Vallillo chose the collection of music in this project to shed light on one of history's most beloved figures, not only as a remarkable leader, but as a man, who knew and loved many of these very songs himself. The program is designed to be educational as well as entertaining including interesting anecdotes about the songs and composers. A nationally recognized bluegrass artist, Vallillo will take you on a musical journey back through the land of Lincoln.

February 6: Bottoms Up! Book Discussion and Beer Tasting (NOTE: This program is for adults only and $20.00 per person.)
Warm up on Winterfest weekend while learning about Wisconsin's historic bars and breweries with Bottoms Up author, Jim Draeger. No presentation about beer would be complete without a tasting so let's all raise a glass together. A tasting of six craft beers will be served as part of the presentation. Jim Draeger is an architectural historian and the State Historic Preservation Officer at the Wisconsin Historical Society with more than twenty-five years of historic preservation experience. From roadside architecture to Northwoods resorts, Draeger celebrates the importance of ordinary buildings to our daily lives through his research, writing, and lectures.

February 13: Polka Heartland with Richard March
From polka's surprising origins as a cutting-edge European fad, to an exploration of the modern-day polka scene, “Polka Heartland” captures the beat that pulses in the heart of Midwestern culture, and offers up the fascinating history of how “oompah-pah” came to be the sound of Middle America.

This history unites the dazzling images of photographer Dick Blau with author Richard March's cultural backstory to explain the polka phenomenon that plays out at Wisconsin wedding receptions, crowded festival dance tents, and off-the-grid Mexican dances. March explores the people, places, and history behind the Midwest's favorite music and describes some of the venues, instruments, and music-makers who have been pivotal to polka's popularity. The Julida Boys will perform polka classics following March's talk.

For more information on any of these programs, please visit Black Point Estate at www.blackpointestate.org To purchase tickets please call 262-248-1888.

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