Bracebridge Still Highlight of Winter Events in Yosemite

In Events, Local, Lodging, News, Things to do, Travel

Photo: The Ahwahnee decorated for the Bracebridge Dinner. Photo by Dave Ciskowski.

The historic Bracebridge dinner is as much a part of Yosemite as the granite monoliths that surround the Valley, now changes from Delaware North Company are making the event that seemed almost impossible to get tickets for much less exclusive.

San Jose Mercury News: “For many years, it was nearly impossible to obtain tickets to this elegant, three-hour dinner and pageant that recreates a traditional 18th-century Christmas feast, complete with classic carols, period music, operatic-style singing, comedic skits (with some audience participation) and a hearty seven-course meal.

But the Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts, which manages the Ahwahnee and the event, eliminated the ticket lottery system in 2002. Tickets for select 2007 performances are available on a first-call, first-served basis. (The number is 559-253-5676.) There are eight performance dates this year, with the first show on Dec. 15 and last on Dec. 26.

The evening, which for many is a once-in-a-lifetime event, is a dressy affair. Many men wear a tuxedo or dark suit, women an elegant party gown.
The dinner is based on Washington Irving’s 1820 story ‘The Sketch Book,’ about Christmas Day at Bracebridge Hall in Yorkshire, England. It started shortly after the Ahwahnee Hotel opened in 1927.

Soon afterward, famed photographer and Shakespeare buff Ansel Adams rewrote the original program. To this day, the performance remains true to his score of carols, Renaissance rituals and music reminiscent of the Middle Ages. Adams was an early dinner performer, too.”

Photo by Dave Ciskowski via Flickr.

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