Free Family Event Offers Living History in Durham

Laura Parker 315x205

This Saturday, a free family event in Durham invites you to to savor the joys of living in the South while learning about history in a fun way at a state historic site. The Duke Homestead will hold its annual Harvest and Hornworm Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sept. 10, with living history attractions that include live music by legendary bluesman John Dee Holeman, a mock tobacco auction and demonstrations of the traditional skills of tobacco priming, looping, curing and tying.

Enjoy a performance by the Little River Cloggers and try some homemade ice cream. The newly crowned Tobacco Queen, Laura Parker?, will make an appearance, and you can catch a MoonPie Eating contest and a hornworm race.

Throughout the day, browse vendors’ booths in the picnic area, enjoy mule-drawn wagon rides and speak with the site’s skilled costumed interpreters at the historic home of Washington Duke, whose home tobacco manufacturing business became the world’s largest tobacco company – the American Tobacco Company. The home is located at 2828 Duke Homestead Road, just off the Guess Road exit of I-85.

Here’s a look at the preliminary program schedule:

All Day: Artists’ booths, food vendors, homemade ice cream, museum tours, orientation film

10 a.m.        Tobacco Harvesting demonstration

10 a.m.        Little River Cloggers perform

11 a.m.        Looping contest (stringing tobacco on sticks for curing)

11 a.m.        John Dee Holeman performs (stage)

Noon            Hornworm race

12:30 p.m.        John Dee Holeman performs (stage)

1:30 p.m.          Mock auction

2:15 p.m.          MoonPie eating contest

2:30 p.m.          Liberty Warehouse Panel Discussion (auditorium)

3 p.m.          Flies in the Kitchen performs traditional string music (stage)

3:45 p.m.          Raffle

For more information, visit or call (919) 477-5498.


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