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November 11. 2012 9:51PM

Christmas at the Castle tours available for two weekends in Moultonborough

MOULTONBOROUGH - The Lucknow mansion, Castle in the Clouds, will be decked out in holiday splendor the next two weekends.

Industrialist Thomas Plant built the arts-and-crafts style mansion and lived there with his wife, Olive, from 1914 to 1941.

The Christmas at the Castle open house and tours will be held Nov. 16th through the 18th, and from Nov. 23rd through the 25th. Lucknow will be decorated in vintage winter and Christmas decorations, with exhibits on gifts, cards and Christmas trees. Musical entertainment and a separate lunch will be offered in the Carriage House.

The Plants spent many winters in warmer resorts, but the hosts at the Castle capture three decades of Christmas traditions during a time of much socio-economic and political change that impacted how the season was celebrated. Castle Manager Nancy Gaver points out that the 1920s welcomed change, but people still craved the traditions of the past."All Christmases are a pastiche of old and new," Gaver said. "For example, on the family tree, old-fashioned angel hair competed with the new gimmick - tinsel. Affordable electric lights for Christmas trees began to replace candles in many homes."

During the tour, visitors will be acquainted with the evolution of the Christmas card, Christmas trees and their decorations, Christmas wrappings and interior décor. Other exhibits will describe popular Christmas gifts and their prices as well as menus and recipes for Christmas dinners.

Tours begin at the Carriage House, where there will be a fire blazing in the hearth and seasonal beverages and treats. Trolleys will take visitors up the hill to the Lucknow mansion. Visitors will receive a special souvenir program that includes a history of the Castle in the Clouds and an outline of the holiday exhibits.

Tickets are $20, or $15 for Friends of the Castle members. All proceeds benefit the Castle Restoration Fund. For additional information, call 476-5900 or go to castleintheclouds.com.

lmulkern@newstote.com


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