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Galveston Historical Foundation's "Dickens on The Strand"

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Photo by David Canright, Galveston Historical Foundation

The annual holiday street festival, based on 19th-century Victorian London, features parades, non-stop entertainment on five stages, strolling carolers, roving musicians, bagpipers, jugglers and a host of other entertainers. Costumed vendors will peddle their wares from street stalls and rolling carts laden with holiday food and drink, Victorian-inspired crafts, clothing, jewelry, holiday decorations and gift items.

New for 2012, the festival will offer attendees the opportunity to take their place in the history books as a world record is set for the most signatures on a birthday card honoring Dickens' 200th birthday. Additionally, two decedents of the author will be in attendance. Jane Monk, great-great-granddaughter, and Lucinda Dickens Hawksley, great-great-great-granddaughter, will be making special appearances throughout the event.

Also new for this year, Dickens weekend will kick off on Friday afternoon for a special "Tea with Queen Victoria." Guests will be served a traditional tea with savories, scones and sweets while being treated to a short lecture on the history of tea.

Returning this year with an expanded bazaar, performance of Steampunk Curiosity Shop, and Saturday night street ball is the Airship Isabella, an alternative Victorian Steampunk group of performers located in Steampunk Square and on the Westminster Abbey stage.

Other returning favorites for 2012 are the Whimsical Whisker Revue, a facial hair contest for both the bearded and the dandy judged by the Austin Facial Hair Club; Dickens' Victorian Costume Contest; Steampunk Costume Contest; Civil War living history encampments and daily parades through Galveston's National Historic Landmark Strand District. Kid friendly options such as Picadilly Circus, a children's playground with elephant and camel rides and a petting zoo; Artful Dodger Lane, where art students create a chalk London on Galveston's streets; and a true island rarity, snow, in the snow yard.

WHEN

WHERE

Historic Downtown Galveston
2302 Strand St.
Galveston, TX 77550
http://www.galvestonhistory.org/Dickens_Overview.asp

TICKET INFO

$12 in advance; $14 at the gate; costumed guests receive 50 percent discount.
All events are subject to change due to weather or other concerns. Please check with the venue or organization to ensure an event is taking place as scheduled.