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Chester County Press

Share the beauty of Yuletide at Winterthur

11/28/2017 01:33PM ● By J. Chambless

Elaborately decorated trees are always a big part of the Yuletide celebration at Winterthur.

During Yuletide at Winterthur, visitors can enter an age of opulence at Henry Francis du Pont’s former home, which is decorated with sparkling holiday displays, including the famous majestic dried-flower tree and a royally inspired tree display.

Winterthur explores Christmas traditions from the 1800s to the early 20th century, including displays of the earliest types of colorful lights decorating house exteriors, a full-room scene of Clement Moore’s “A Visit from St. Nicholas,” the du Pont family's holiday celebrations, and the evolution of Christmas trees from the 1880s to the 1960s.
In celebration of the exhibit “Royal Splendor: The Coronation Gown from 'The Crown,'” which showcases the coronation gown worn on the popular Netflix series “The Crown,” the Yuletide Tour will recreate trees enjoyed by Queen Victoria’s family at Windsor Castle, inspired by a painting depicting the queen’s celebration in 1851.
Younger visitors will linger over the 18-room dollhouse mansion created by designer and philanthropist Nancy McDaniel over a period of 30 years. It features intricate details in each room and is decorated for the holidays. A tree decorated with 458 needlework ornaments, all crafted by Nancy McDaniel, will also be on display. In addition, two of Winterthur’s own iconic rooms designed by H. F. du Pont will be on display in miniature form – the Cecil Bedroom and the Queen Anne Dining Room. These rooms were created by the renowned miniature artists Eugene J. Kupjack.
Visitors can also enjoy jazz and wine events, lectures, and musical and theatrical performances.

Live performances include:

University of Delaware Chorale 'Carols by Candlelight'
Dec. 10, 4 to 4:45 p.m.

A Christmas Carol”
Dec. 6 at 1 p.m., and Dec. 7 at 1 and 6 p.m.

This one-man show is performed by Gerald Charles Dickens, the great-great-grandson of Charles Dickens, who depicts 26 characters of the classic tale. The Visitor Center Café will be open until 6 p.m. Performance-only tickets are $22 for non-members, and $12 for children under 12. Package price (performance and general admission) is $34 for non-members, and $18 for children under 12. For tickets, call 800-448-3883 or purchase online.

Charles Dickens reading
Dec. 6, 6 p.m.

Gerald Charles Dickens performs a reading of two stories by Charles Dickens, “Doctor Marigold” and “The Signalman.” The performances are 45 minutes each ,with a 20-minute intermission. Tickets are $15for non-members. Not recommend for children under 12.

The Glass Matters! Riedel Wine Seminar & Tasting
Dec. 13, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Learn how the shape of the glass influences your perception and enjoyment of wine. Enjoy three red wines in three different shaped crystal Riedel glasses, which you’ll then take home. Tickets are $80 for non-members. Purchase tickets online or call 800-448-3883. Entrance to Yuletide Jazz and Wine following the seminar is included.

Yuletide Brunch with Santa

Dec. 16, 17 and 23

Seatings available from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Santa will appear from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tickets are $35.95 per person (children under 12, half off). Reservations required. Call 302-888-4826 or e-mail [email protected]

Yuletide Brunch with Dickens
Dec. 7, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Gerald Charles Dickens joins brunch in the Visitor Center Cafe. Tickets are $29.95for adults. For reservations, call 302-888-4600.

Special Exhibitions

Treasures on Trial: The Art and Science of Detecting Fakes
Through Jan. 7, 2018

Questions about the authenticity of art and antiques consistently capture headlines around the world. This fun and captivating exhibition looks at forgeries and counterfeit objects of all types – from art to wine to fashion – prompting us to ask, “Do we see what we think we see?” Discover how experts answer the question, “Is it real or fake?”

Royal Splendor: The Coronation Gown from 'The Crown'

Through Jan. 7, 2018

This exhibition, the first in a new Winterthur exhibition series titled “Eye on the Iconic,” will feature the replica coronation gown worn in episode five, “Smoke and Mirrors,” of the Netflix series “The Crown,” a dramatized history of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.

Collecting for the Future: Recent Additions to the Winterthur Collection

This exhibit features more than 20 objects acquired by the museum in the past six years, many on display for the first time, and highlights the breadth of Winterthur’s decorative arts collection. The new acquisitions featured include textiles, ceramics, metals, paintings, and furniture made between 1700 and 1975.

Go To Your Room! Interior Design & the Youthful Imagination

The ubiquitous catalogs, home design television shows, and retail stores make it seem as though the child’s bedroom has always been its own unique design space in the American home. The evolution of this room, however, didn’t actually begin until the early 20th century, when nearly every home decorating manual sought to weigh in on the proper arrangement and adornment of a child’s bedroom.

Winterthur is open daily (including Mondays) during Yuletide, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The last Yuletide Tour is at 3:30 p.m. The Visitor Center Café and Cottage Café are open until 4 p.m. Galleries and stores are open until 5:30 p.m. Open New Year's Day. Closed on Christmas. Yuletide Tour reservations are recommended.
There are extended evening hours on Dec. 6, 13, and 20, from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. The last Yuletide Tour tickets are sold at 6:45 p.m. Stores stay open until 8 p.m.

On Dec. 24, the last tour tickets are sold at 2:15 p.m. Galleries close at 4 p.m. Museum Stores close at 4 p.m.

Yuletide Tour tickets are honored for two consecutive days and include access to the garden, a garden tram tour (weather permitting), the galleries and special exhibitions, and a Yuletide house tour. Tours are available from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily, with the last tickets sold at 3:15 p.m. Extended hours are on Wednesdays, with the last tickets sold at 6:45 p.m. Reservations are recommended. Tickets are $22 for adults, $5 for ages 2 to 11, free for infants under 2. Senior tickets (62 and older) are $20. Students 12 and older are $20. For more information about all events and exhibitions, visit