Time to break out the ’20s attire for Great Gatsby Days | TahoeDailyTribune.com
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Time to break out the ’20s attire for Great Gatsby Days

Nancy Oliver Hayden
File photos by Jim Grant / Tahoe Daily Tribune / Tallac Historic Site volunteers Linda and Bill Ramay, front seat, take visitors, Cynthia and Don Lynn, for a ride in Tallac's own 1928 GMC open touring bus. The vehicle will be available for tours of the site during the Great Gatsby Festival.
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The Tallac Historic Site will present its 21st annual Great Gatsby Days Festival Aug. 12 and 13 at the site four miles north of the “Y” intersection of Highway 50 and State Route 89.

The event offers an opportunity to step back in time with a celebration of the Roaring ’20s and everyone is encouraged to dress in Gatsby style and join in the fun. It also honors the heyday of the three magnificently-restored early 1900’s estates on the site. There is no charge for parking and strolling the site is free. Parking is very limited. A much larger parking lot is available for those turning at the Tallac Historic Site sign at Kiva Beach as well as at the Forest Service Visitor Center, or along State Route 89.

More than 50 volunteers, appropriately dressed in the attire of the 1920s, will participate in the event. Numerous vintage automobiles will be on display, while artists, crafters, musicians and food vendors will show off their wares. Several merchants will display antiques and costumes from the past. All events will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days unless listed otherwise.

The Tallac Historic Site is managed by the U.S. Forest Service and operates in conjunction with the Tallac Historic Foundation and the Tahoe Tallac Association. All proceeds raised at this event stay on the site to advance restoration work. For more information call the Tallac Historic Site at (530) 541-5227.

-Charley Williamson, volunteer public relations volunteer at the Tallac Historic Site, contributed to this article.

Great Gatsby 2006 Schedule of Events

10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 13 and 14

— Pope House Tours – $5

— Antique Automobile Show on the Pope House lawn. Vote for People’s Choice Awards

— Children’s Games – water-melon spitting and pie-eating contests from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. behind the Pope House

— Amelia Bedelia will read stories to children at 1 p.m. Sunday

— Silent Auction – 10 a.m. Saturday to 3 p.m. Sunday with many items donated by area merchants

— Gatsby Tea and Fashion Show – 2 p.m. Sunday on Valhalla lawn. Tickets are $35 and are limited. Call (530) 544-7383

— Blacksmith Shop open with metal working demonstrations by Mary Nelson. Julianne Wilson and Marianne Rosenfeld will demonstrate hand-crafted furniture

— Pope Boathouse – see the Quic-Chakidn undergoing restoration

— Vintage Vendors with antiques and costumes

— Speakeasy open for adults – location can’t be published, but it might be found in the vicinity of the Pope House

— Concessions – Tahoe Wildlife will sell sandwiches, ice cream soft drinks and water and the Tallac Site will offer cotton candy and popcorn

— Murder Mystery Dinner and Theater at Valhalla Grand Hall – 6 p.m. Saturday for $45 per person. Reservations required. Call (530) 541-4975

— Great Gatsby posters signed by the artist, Darcie Park, will be available at Baldwin Museum and Pope House for $20

— Baldwin Museum and Dextra Cabin will be open with exhibits

— Each day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. children are invited to play 1920s-era games near the water fountain behind the Pope House. Included will be watermelon-spitting, pie-eating contests and potato sack races. There is no charge and prizes will be awarded. An artist will paint faces, and Carol Rapacz will read Amelia Bedelia stories of the 1920s at 1 p.m. Sunday on the Pope House lawn.

— Strolling musicians will entertain visitors with 1920s-era tunes both days – Larry Elliott will be returning to Gatsby for his ninth time to play the banjo and clarinet.

— Vintage cars from the Roaring ’20s will be on display at the Pope Estate. Visitors are encouraged to vote on their favorites. Tallac’s own 1928 GMC open touring bus will tour the property, and its 1919 Pierce-Arrow touring car will be on display.

— Crafters will demonstrate both days in the artist’s cabin near the Pope House. Julianne Wilson and Marianne Rosenfeld will create handcrafted home furnishings, while Mary Nelson will work in the blacksmith shop.

— Tours of the Pope House, a finely restored summer home, will be conducted by volunteers. As the tour moves through the house , other volunteers acting as member of the Pope family and guests will be seen engaged in day-to-day activities of the 1920s. Among these will be the famous actor Rudolph Valentino, who often visited. Admission is $5.

— Sandwiches, ice cream, soft drinks and water will be available from Tahoe Wildlife Care – the Tallac Site will sell cotton candy and popcorn. New this year is a “speakeasy,” where beer can be purchased. Naturally, the location of such an establishment couldn’t be published, but it might be found in the vicinity of the Pope House.

— Also new is a silent auction. Visitors are invited to bid on items donated by area merchants, including: ski lift tickets, dinners at fine restaurants, lodging and home furnishings. Bidding starts at 10 a.m. Saturday and will close at 3 p.m. Sunday. High bidders need not be present. An announcement of the high bidders will be made at the end of the Tea at Valhalla.

— Valhalla is a fine summer home that was built in 1923 by Walter Heller of San Francisco. A murder mystery dinner theater will take place in Valhalla Grand Hall on Saturday. Doors open at 6 p.m. The cost is $45 and reservations are required. Call (530) 541-4975.

— The Pope Boat House, built by George Pope in the 1920s to house his famous 60-foot boat, Sheik, will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. The Sheik no longer exists, but another famous boat of the lake, Quic-Chakidn, is under restoration in the building.

— The Baldwin House, built in 1921, is an impressive home constructed using materials from the site. It has a half-log exterior and hand-adzed pine interior walls. It houses the Baldwin Museum, information center and bookstore, all of which will be open during the Gatsby event.

— The Tea at Valhalla will begin at 2 p.m. Sunday on the Valhalla lawn. The event will include a fashion show, entertainment, tea and snacks. Tickets are $35 and are available by calling the Tahoe Heritage Foundation at (530) 544-7383. A limited number of tickets for the tea remain.

— The 17th in the Great Gatsby posters series commemorating the event will be available at both the Baldwin Museum and the Pope House. The cost is $20 and they will be signed by the artist, Darcie Park. The posters are numbered and include a certificate of authenticity. For collectors, many of the earlier posters are available at the museum.


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