A “Top 100” Event in Ontario, Sainte-Marie’s spectacular “First Light” returns for its 13th year the evenings of November 29th, 30th, and December 1st.
The signature feature of First Light is the illumination of the historic site by candlelight. The First Light event began at Sainte-Marie 13 years ago with 1,000 candles; this year the number of candles has been increased to 5,000 creating a magical ambience. Attendance at First Light has grown from 1,000 visitors since inception to over 6,000 visitors in 2012.
Beautiful lantern-lit paths lead to a variety of fun family activities. Upon entering the historic site, visitors will encounter the popular “Survival In The Bush” historical encampment at the main gates. In the Jesuit Residence, children can write with quill pens as they prepare their very own seasonal messages, and fun take-home bracelets can be made in Sainte-Marie’s carpenter shop. In the Cookhouse 15,000 gingerbread and lavender treats made by the Grade 9 and 10 culinary class from St. Theresa’s High School in Midland from historic recipes will be available for sampling. Festival du Loup and La Clé d’la Baie will offer a “Fleur de lys” key ring craft in the En Colombage building.
The sounds of musket drill will punctuate the night courtesy of re-enactor group La Compagnie Franche de la Marine who will also be serving hot chocolate. In the Sainte-Marie foyer, little folks will love making a seasonal craft offered from The Métis Nation of Ontario, fashioning delightful corn husk dolls, and creating a special Angel ornament at the Discovery Harbour table.
Music has always been a crowd pleaser at First Light, and this year’s event will provide a wonderful mix of performers. NEW this year will be the four-part a cappella troupe The Rhyming Couplets that will wander through the historic site filling the air with seasonal melodies. Vince Therrien will present historic French and English music and local artist Michel Payment will share his inspiring songs in the Sainte-Marie Chapel. Amidst the lively atmosphere of a French Café at Restaurant Sainte-Marie, toe-tapping entertainment will be provided by La Famille Lefaive and Jill et les Bucherons. In Sainte-Marie’s famous longhouses, the Christian Island Drum Group and John Somosi will thrill audiences with their First Nations drumming, chanting, and singing. A total of 13 choirs including 8 school groups will also perform at the event over three evenings, including the return of The Children’s Community Choir from Penetanguishene and the OPP Chorus.
For everyone who would like to do some early Christmas shopping, 20 exceptional artisans will be in the Sainte-Marie Museum and the Sainte-Marie gift shop will be open each night.
The magical “First Light” event will be presented at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons evenings November 29, 30, and December 1 from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Admission is just $8.00 per person with a non-perishable food item that will be donated to the local Salvation Army food bank. Children ages 5 and under are free. For information call (705) 526-7838 or visit www.hhp.on.ca.
Please be advised that with the exception of service animals, pets are not
allowed on the historic site for this event. Overflow parking will be available at Doral
Industries, 100 Wye Valley Road. Free shuttle buses will run to Sainte-Marie throughout
Overnight packages are available from the Midland Super 8 Hotel starting at $125.00 per night based on double occupancy. Package includes 1 night accommodation, entrance to First Light event, and a complimentary breakfast. Persons must be 19 years of age or older.
Sainte-Marie among the Hurons is operated by Huronia Historical Parks,
and is an Attraction of the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport.