Flashback February is a week of hands-on learning, live demonstrations, talks, film screenings, stories and experiences exploring the unique cultural heritage of Prince Edward County.
Experts, curators, artists and innovators will be on hand to spark conversation, lead activities and dig into our rich history.
This year’s theme is Spirits of Our Past. Download the full schedule here.
Imagine being trapped in Macaulay House, with only artifacts and your understanding of County history to help you escape. Live it this February, when a new escape room is launched during Flashback February! Find tickets here.
Experience the ultimate High Tea. Learn about the history of tea and ceramics as 18th and 19th century artifacts are passed around. Select your teacup and choose among 70 kinds of tea as you join an elite group of tea drinkers including Elizabeth Simcoe, Susanna Moodie and Catherine Macaulay. Indulge in shortbread made with the recipe used at Buckingham Palace and taste a wide variety of made-in-The-County jams and jellies. Reserve space with email@example.com.
Saturday, February 16
Do you have an old cookbook tucked into a kitchen drawer or stored in a box of family mementos – perhaps a church fundraising cookbook, advertising brochure, or home economics manual? If so, bring your old cookbooks to the Antique Cookbook Roadshow for an evaluation of their historical value by Liz Driver, food historian, cookbook expert, and South Marysburgh resident. (Free!)
Taste That! Comedy presents “Flashbacks,” an Improvised Trip through Local Lore, featuring local celebrities and storytellers. Tickets are $15, with a Sunday afternoon pay-what-you-can, family-friendly show!
Performances are Saturday, February 16 at 3 p.m. and 9 p.m. and Sunday, February 17 at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. More details and tickets available at tastethatcomedy.com.
Leah, Kate and Maggie Fox grew up in Consecon in the 1830s and gained fame for their ability to speak with the dead. As rumours of their abilities grew, so did their following. Soon they were performing seances for huge crowds and wealthy families, interpreting knocks and bumps from the great beyond during Victorian seances.
Channel those feelings of goose bump-raising wonder at a special night in honour of the Fox Sisters at the iconic Regent Theatre.
The show features Scott McClelland, a parapsychologist and a harbinger of lost secrets. Together you will take a journey down the rabbit hole, following in the footsteps of the Fox Sisters, as he explores the weird and exotic world of the supernatural. Join Scott as he opens the doors to his Wunderkammer, a 17th Century Cabinet of Wonders. Once the doors of the Wunderkammer are opened… anything is possible!
Loaded with audience participation and laughs galore, this show is a unique experience for everyone. Mind-boggling mysteries abound… you may have paid for an entire seat… but you’ll just be using the edge of it during the show! Is it REAL? You be the judge! Find tickets here.
Courtesy Canada Aviation and Space Museum
Sunday, February 17
The Avro Arrow was designed and built in the 1950s, with a futuristic look of swept-back delta wings and early electronic flight controls. But before it could be put to use in the military, the design program was scrapped. The early prototypes were chopped up, their blueprints destroyed. Nine test models, lost to Lake Ontario after being shot out over the body of water to test their flight-worthiness, were the only remaining artifacts of the once-promising Cold War-era military program.
The whereabouts of the models has, as the New York Times put it: “become one of Canada’s greatest bits of folklore, and not just among the military or aviation buffs sometimes known as Arrowheads.”
Hear from mining executive John Burzynski, who helped raise nearly $1 million for sonar technology to help locate the planes, about the saga involved in finally lifting an Arrow from its watery hiding place. Find tickets here.
Picton United Church is home to a huge and historic pipe organ – hear it highlighted in modern musical pieces designed to show off its flexibility and muscle. Murray Baer, County resident and active member of the Quinte Symphony, will play a selection of contemporary pieces – think Phantom of the Opera, or Funeral March of a Marionette, among others – before a behind-the-scenes tour of the historic church’s historic features. Find tickets here.
Monday, February 18
The Friends of Sandbanks and the Sandbanks Provincial Park host a free, family-friendly winter event that includes cross-country skiing, tobogganing and other outdoor activities set around a roaring bonfire inside Maple Rest, enjoy hot chocolate, heart-warming chili, and a musical jam session. Bring an instrument and join their talented regulars! New this year, a family-friendly performance about the Route Champlain, featuring songs and games designed to celebrate the explorer. (Free!)
Tuesday, February 19
Children’s Programming at the Public Library
Children can use quills, ink and parchment to write a letter to a historical County figure. Free!
7th Town Historical Society and the Marilyn Adams Genealogical Centre will feature its military and Loyalist collections and resources during a free Open House on February 19. On display will be a complete set of WWI Victory Bonds marketing and canvassing materials – items actually used to raise funds in the Prince Edward County area. Our knowledgeable volunteers will be available to answer questions about our Victoria Cross library and Hessian library collections, not to mention our many books about Loyalist history, military and otherwise.
A Loyalist “Agent for Secret Service” appeared as any other man or woman living in the American colonies but their seemingly usual life hid a secret world of intrigue and danger. Intricate spy networks, which included entire families, frisked everything to thwart the efforts of the ‘rebels.’ Find tickets here.
Wednesday, February 20
In 1845, explorer Sir John Franklin set sail from England with two ships, HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, in search of a Northwest Passage across what is now Canada’s Arctic. The ships and crews vanished and dozens of search expeditions set sail to try to find them.
A breakthrough was made in September 2014 when an expedition led by Parks Canada discovered the wreck of HMS Erebus, in the south of King William Island in Nunavut. A second breakthrough happened in September 2016, when HMS Terror was found in Terror Bay, further north. Hear more about these finds, and the use of state-of-the-art technology, Inuit knowledge and oral testimony that made these historic discoveries possible. See a documentary on the discoveries, made by County-based filmmaker Ryan J. Noth of Fifthtown Films. Find tickets here.
Thursday, February 21
Test your County smarts with trivia. Bragging rights and awesome prizes are up for grabs! Come on your own or as a team of up to 6 players. $10 per person at the door. Register with firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday, February 22
Re-live the maritime history of The County and Canada with three documentary features.
The first feature is a History Moment on the legendary race boat Miss Supertest, which competed in international races held in Picton in 1959-1961.
Beyond The Horizon tells the story of the discovery in 2014 of the HMS Erebus, one of the lost ships of the doomed Franklin Expedition of 1845.
The main feature is a documentary showcasing the epic journey of the C3, a Canada 150 Signature project that took Canadians on a 150 – day expedition on a former icebreaker moving from Toronto to Victoria via The Northwest Passage. Picton was the vessel’s first stop.
A question and answer session with the filmmakers will follow the presentations. Find tickets here.
MacKenzie King did it, so did Susanna Moodie. In fact, many Canadians consulted the spirits as part of a religious experience, to seek guidance for themselves and others, and to attempt to learn what lies beyond the grave. Some came to the séance room to hear ancient wisdom while others came to understand the nature of psychic phenomena. Like the mechanisms that produced the flashing lights, cool breezes, and whirling trumpets that materialized in the presence of the medium, their beliefs and experiences have been mostly hidden, until now.
Stan McMullin draws upon séance notes, letters, diaries and special collections to create a fascinating picture of how educated people were drawn to spiritualism and psychic research. His book, Anatomy of a Séance, shows that for many Canadians attempting to sort out their religious beliefs and find an acceptable marriage between religion and science, the séance room provided an alternative to formal religious dogma. Despite the opposition of mainline churches, spiritualism offered the possibility of a “scientific” religion that could prove the existence of heaven. (Free!)
Saturday, February 23
Join performers from the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory singing in a variety of styles at a special concert for Flashback February.
Te Konti Rennahkwa is a Tyendinaga Womens Waterdrum group made up of Carlene Smart, Mandy Smart, Crystal Loft, Ali Brant and Nichole Green. The group have traveled and performed in Ottawa, Toronto, Brantford, London, Akwasasne, Onondaga and New York.
Jennifer Brant & Kieran Edwards perform country and folk music. Jennifer is a singer, songwriter and photographer from Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory. She plays rhythm guitar and bass while accompanied by her husband Kieran Edwards.
Taylor Marie Cole performs music and dance from Broadway shows. She is a musical theatre performer from Tyendinaga who is currently active in Toronto. Previous credits include: Hello Dolly, Beauty and the Beast and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Tickets are $20 at the door.
Heritage Awards Dinner
The Heritage Awards Dinner recognizes heritage champions in the Prince Edward County community who have made outstanding contributions toward the preservation and promotion of Prince Edward County’s heritage. Awards include Conservation of Built Heritage (for preservation, restoration or protection); Heritage Awareness & Advocacy (for outstanding contributions in public advocacy on behalf of heritage); Preservation of Cultural Heritage Landscapes; and the Lifetime Achievement award, for extensive commitment to the preservation and protection of cultural or built heritage in Prince Edward County.
Join the Prince Edward Heritage Advisory Committee as it celebrates and honours heritage at a family-style meal at the Bloomfield Public House, one of The County’s recently refurbished buildings. Tickets via TicketScene.ca.