History Festivals and Events

Civil War Interpretive Event

When: Second Weekend in September
Where: South Gabouri and Front Streets in the Ste. Genevieve Historic District
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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A family-friendly, living history event! Observe Civil War camp life and demonstrations of marching, musket fire, and cannon fire.  Learn about Ste. Genevieve citizens who fought in the war, some on each side.  At 1:00 gather at the corner of Main and Merchant streets to observe a re-enactment of the 1861 bank raid by Federal Troops.

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Le Reveillon
French Christmas

Felix Valle State Historic Site

Merchant and 2nd Streets
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
573-883-7102
FelixValleStateHistoricSite.com
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This annual holiday celebration highlights the music, customs, and crafts of early French Colonial Christmas in Ste. Genevieve.  The celebration, known as Le Reveillon, features costumed guides who explain the early 19th century customs of Christmas.  Traditional foods and music of the period are featured.

La Guiannée (La Guignolèe)

Historic District
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
800-373-7007
573-883-7097
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La Guiannée – Founded by French fur traders, Ste. Genevieve remained a French speaking enclave for centuries in the newly Americanized Midwest. Sadly, the last generations of native French speakers are disappearing, but old traditions like La Guiannée still remain. This ancient

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tradition is celebrated by descendants of those French settlers every New Year’s Eve. Dressed in bizarre and somewhat archaic costumes, the revelers wander from place to place singing a beggars song for favors. You can see and participate with these singers and musicians as they celebrate this 250 year old tradition each New Year’s Eve in the streets, cafes and pubs of old Ste. Genevieve’s Historic District. A public view takes place around 7:00 pm at the Valle High School gym, and a watch party is also held at the Bolduc House Museum where pre-registration is required.(573-883-3105) 

History Conference

When: Please see Events Calendar for details
Where: Ste. Genevieve County Community Center
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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The Foundation for Restoration of Ste. Genevieve hosts an annual history conference at which presentations are made on the history of Ste. Genevieve and the surrounding area.  Presentations are on a variety of subjects from pre-European settlement to the French colonial period as well as the 19th and 20th centuries.

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The event starts with a continental breakfast and then lunch.  A reception for conference attendees will be held on Friday evening.

 

 

 

Spirit Reunion in Memorial Cemetery

When: 5:30 pm October 28, 2017
Where: Memorial Cemetery
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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The spirits will again emerge from the crypts and tombs of historic old Ste. Genevieve’s Memorial Cemetery as the Foundation for Restoration of Ste. Genevieve hosts its annual Déjà vu Spirit Reunion.  Visitors will experience Missouri’s oldest town through the spirits of those buried in the town’s Memorial Cemetery. This cemetery,

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established in 1787, includes the tombs and grave markers of the area’s earliest French pioneers as well as emigrants of German, Scottish and other heritages – slave, free and integrated spouses of black African and Native Americans.
This living history program of stories, traditions and nostalgia highlights the lives and personalities of notables such as U.S. Senator Lewis F. Linn, Felix and Odile Vallé, Marie LaPorte, Joseph Bogy, Ferdinand Rozier (a one-time business partner of John James Audubon). This provides the visitor with an intimate taste of lifestyles and happenings in Missouri’s oldest town during the late 18th and 19th centuries. So tour the cemetery via lantern light and chat “face-to-face” with over 20 spirits clad in traditional dress and enjoy a hauntingly good time.
In addition, all proceeds help to benefit the Foundation for Restoration’s activities and restoration efforts. The FRSG is a non-profit community organization formed to promote the preservation and restoration of Ste. Genevieve’s historic structures and traditions. And in 2007 the FRSG was awarded the distinguished Governor’s Humanities Award for the Déjà vu Spirit Reunion program.

 

 

Jour de Fete Arts & Crafts Festival

When: Second full weekend in August
Where: Historic District, Ste. Genevieve, MO
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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The annual Jour de Fête is southeast Missouri’s largest outdoor Crafts Fair. Held in the heart of Ste. Genevieve’s Historic District, visitors can browse through arts and crafts booths. Shop till you drop and enjoy live music, foods, living history demonstrations and other activities at this family-friendly event.

French Veillee’

Second Weekend in June
Felix Valle State Historic Site
Merchant and Second Streets
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
573-883-7102

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Enjoy an evening in the garden of the Felix Valle House at this recreation of a La Veillee, a traditional French Colonial summer social gathering. Featured will be French folk dancing, folk tales, candlelight tours of the home, and refreshments.

 

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King’s Ball

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When: First Saturday evening in February
Where: VFW Hall, Memorial Drive
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

The annual King’s Ball, originally held to celebrate twelfth-night, is just another of Ste Genevieve’s old French settlers’ traditions that has been celebrated annually for over 250 years. Attendees are encouraged to dress in French Colonial attire and

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participate in the traditional music and dance. In addition, some guests dress their tables with a candelabrum, table clothes, wine glasses and buffets of food. Proceeds benefit the Ste. Genevieve Museum and other projects.

Ecole du Soldat

When: Please see the Events Calendar for specifics
Where: Historic District
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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A family-friendly, living history event! Come explore the traditions of the “School of the Soldier.” This is a fully packed weekend of lectures and camaraderie with plenty of events to see.

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On Saturday, attend a public heritage auction of discovered ‘desirables’ – memorabilia, collectibles, ‘accouterments’, utensils, and ‘watch’a-may-call-its’.  In addition, Ste Genevieve has the greatest concentration of original French colonial buildings in North America. Plus is the only surviving French colonial village in the United States. At Ecole du Soldat activities of that early era are reenacted.

 

French Heritage Festival

Second Weekend in June
Historic District
Ste. Genevieve, MO
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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The French Festival is a living history event with live traditional music, folk dancing, French foods, wine tasting, re-enactors in period dress, historic home tours, street dancing, promenades (parades), children’s activities, walking tours, tea with ‘Marie Antoinette’ at the Guibourd and much more!

 

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Rural Heritage Day

When: October – Please see the Events Calendar for specifics
Where: St. Mary’s Road and in the Historic District
Admission: Donations appreciated
800-373-7007
573-883-7097

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Rural Heritage Day is a celebration of history, reverie and reminiscence in dedication to the hard working forefathers and foremothers of Ste. Genevieve. Come see how it used to be done, whether it’s farming, cooking, spinning, lace making, leather working, soap making, wood carving, gardening, or good old-fashioned games.

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In addition, watch demonstrations of handicrafts of yesteryear. Try the Lions Club’s vittles or bring a picnic. Stay the day and have a blast from the past!