Lights highlight Hammond's home; castle hosting holiday events

·2 min read

Dec. 4—Hammond Castle is ready for the holidays with many new events this season.

For the first time, the grounds of Hammond Castle Museum, 80 Hesperus Ave., will be illuminated with holiday lights to highlight its outdoor medieval arches, towers and drawbridge. No reservations are required to visit the outdoor grounds that will be open to guests nightly for free from 4:30 to 10 p.m. through Jan. 2.

But that is only the start of a host of other events.

The museum is also hosting its third annual Deck The Halls holiday celebration, offering both guided and self-guided tours through Jan. 2 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. when visitors can see the varied historical artifacts and architectural elements throughout the castle. Deck the Halls features holiday room designs throughout the castle by local florists and interior designers, including Sage Floral Studio, Horizon Gardens, Haborside Interiors, and Chapman's Florist, Greenhouse Garden Center & Gift Shop.

In a special program inspired by John Hays Hammond Jr.'s work style, the museum is offering guided candlelight tours on Thursdays in December.

"Following the advice of mentor Alexander Graham Bell, John Hays Hammond Jr. conducted the majority of his work in the evening. While this put Hammond at odds with the rest of the inhabitants of the castle — including his wife Irene — he concluded that working throughout the night and sleeping during the day positively impacted his work as an inventor. With this in mind, these candlelight tours are offered," the museum said in a prepared statements

Guides will escort visitors through the castle's many rooms, emphasizing the Hammonds themselves and the time that they spent in their castle home. Reservations should be made in advance. Tickets are $20.

Two special events are also planned this month. The Firebird Pops Orchestra will perform an evening of holiday chamber music in the castle's Great Hall on Saturday, Dec. 11, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. The 12-piece orchestra will present a musical program spanning the ages, from modern day favorites and popular carols, and dating to the era of Gregorian chants. Tickets are $25.

Rounding out the season, Santa will visit the castle on Friday, Dec. 17, from 3 to 7 p.m. Each child will receive a wrapped gift and cookies and milk handed out by elves, and an autographed photo of Santa. This program is suggested for children 2 to 8 years old. Advanced registration is required. Adults, $5, and children, $25.

The Deck the Halls guided and self-guided tours are $18 adults, $15 seniors, $10 kids 5 to 12, and kids 4 and under are free.

For more details or to buy tickets, visit https://www.hammondcastle.org. Tickets for self-guided tours are sold only at the museum gift shop.

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