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Colonial Williamsburg , Virginia Grand Illumination 2008 Holiday Season


Colonial Williamsburg , Virginia Grand Illumination  2008 Holiday Season




Colonial Williamsburg, Va. ― Grand Illumination held on Sunday, Dec. 7, 2008 is a signature event of Colonial Williamsburg’s holiday season that runs from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day. This unforgettable night features fireworks, music and candlelit buildings.

The celebration begins in the late afternoon with a variety of entertainment that starts at 4:45 p.m. on multiple outdoor stages throughout the Historic Area. The Colonial Williamsburg Fifes and Drums provide 18th-century music appropriate to the season. Other performers present a variety of holiday entertainments during the evening’s festivities.

At 5:45 p.m. the Fifes and Drums signal the beginning of the Grand Illumination. At 6:15 p.m., candles are lit in public buildings, shops and homes, and fireworks are launched at three Historic Area locaColonial Williamsburg Grand Illumination by skibradshaw.tions: the Governor’s Palace, Magazine and Capitol. After the fireworks, entertainment resumes on the outdoor stages and continues until 7:30 p.m.

          Illuminations were commonly used during the 18th century to celebrate major events such as military victories, the birthday of the monarch, arrival of a new colonial governor and the like by firing guns into the air and lighting fireworks. Written accounts of illuminations in Williamsburg, before the American Revolution, include descriptions of “candles in the cupolas of public buildings and windows of gentlemen’s houses.”

          The 2008 Grand Illumination schedule is:

·         8:45 a.m. Colonial Williamsburg Visitor Center opens.

·         9 a.m. Colonial Williamsburg buses begin operations between the Visitor Center and the Historic Area.

·         9 a.m. Exhibition buildings, trade shops and museums open.

·         Noon. Francis Street closed from York Street to Henry Street.

·         4 p.m. Colonial Williamsburg buses limit operations. Buses will pick up and discharge passengers at the Governor’s Palace Bus Stop in the Historic Area and the Visitor Center only.

·         4:45 p.m. Entertainment begins on outdoor stages at Palace Green, Market Square, Goal and Capitol building.

·         5:45 p.m. Colonial Williamsburg’s Fifes and Drums play Grand Tattoo signaling the beginning of Colonial Williamsburg’s holiday season. Colonial Williamsburg’s buses temporarily cease operations.

·         6:15 p.m. Candles are lit in public buildings, shops and homes. Fireworks are launched at four locations: the Governor’s Palace, Market Square, and the north and south sides of the Capitol building.

·         8:30 p.m. Colonial Williamsburg’s buses resume operations.


Williamsburg City Police will close Francis Street from York Street to North Henry Street and South England Street from Francis Street to Newport Avenue at noon for Grand Illumination. The streets will be closed to all automobiles except for guests going to King’s Arms, Shields, Chowning’s, the Williamsburg Inn and the Williamsburg Lodge. The city does this to provide adequate parking for tours buses bringing guests to Grand Illumination.


Park at the Visitors’ Center, you can ride the shuttle bus to the Governor’s Palace stop for free. You don’t even need a pass. The shuttle runs all day until 5:45 p.m., then starts up again at 8:30, after the festivities are finished.

At the historic area, there are four stages and four identical fireworks performances. These are the old-fashioned lower fireworks, not the 4th of the July kind which explode way up in the air. So you’re likely to be very far back and, unless you’re tall, have your view partially blocked by the crowd.

There are actually two sets of fireworks shot off at the Capitol. There’s always a big crowd on the south lawn, but the crowd’s always smaller on the north side.

On Sunday, entertainment begins on the four stages at 4:45 p.m. At 5:45, the Fifes and Drums signal the beginning of Grand Illumination.

At 6:15, candles are lit in public buildings, shops and homes, and fireworks are launched from the Governor’s Palace, the Magazine and the Capitol.



Mr Williamsburg.com " Williamsburg VA. Real Estate

 This informational update provided by Mr Williamsburg.com/ John Womeldorf . A local Realtor assisting home buyers and sellers in the Hampton Roads and Williamsburg areas of Virginia.

Contact me at John@MrWilliamsburg.com

Research the area at www.WilliamsburgsRealEstate.com

Or ask any questions about homes, neighborhoods, schools, amenities, recreation , shopping or anything else about the area.

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