Friday, Oct 24, 2014
Out and about

Brooksville Raid commemorates Civil War's 150th anniversary


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It's been nearly 150 years since the Union Army raided the Brooksville area during the Civil War in July 1864, burning and looting plantations and settlements along the way.

This weekend, the Brooksville Raid, a Civil War battle re-enactment that has become one of the biggest in the state, commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Civil War with its 34th event.

The re-enactment is presented by the Hernando Historical Museum Association and the North Pinellas County Scout Sertoma Club.

Ron Daniel, Chairman of the Hernando Historical Museum Association, said the partnership between the two organizations has made the raid successful, attracting as many as 1,500 performers and their families and spectators from across the country.

Each year, the raid demonstrates the battle between the Confederate and Union armies, played out on the open grounds of the Sand Hill Boy Scout Camp on Cortez Blvd.

As many as 40 vendors will have booths displaying and selling souvenirs, clothing and accessories for performers and other trinkets from that historical time era.

"They are like traveling general stores," Daniel said, "And provide a lot good shopping."

The battle will include 28 canons and 60 horses and performers, who often travel the re-enactment circuit, to perform in front of as many as 10,000 expected spectators. Visitors can also tour the camps and see what life was like during that era.

The Brooksville Raid bonds the community with its historic past and helps children understand that time in America's history, Daniel said.

"Young people don't seem to know a lot about the Civil War," he said.

Visitors will also experience the era as the field is transformed to match the period and they can view the Confederate and Union camps as they would have been.

A Ladies' Tea, scheduled for early Saturday morning, will offer a special presentation with participants dressed in authentic attire. A flag burning ceremony will take place, new to this year's Raid, so damaged American flags can be disposed of appropriately.

Food vendors will sell "old time root beer," kettle corn and fry bread which is cooked in a skillet over an open fire. Hot dogs and hamburgers will also be sold.

Admission is $8 for adults, $4 for children ages 6-12. Children 5 and under and Scouts in uniform are admitted free.

Gates open to the public at 9 a.m. and the battle re-enactments are scheduled for 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Parking is free. Visitors can bring their own chairs or rent them for $2.

For more information about the 34th Annual Brooksville Raid, contact the Hernando Historical Museum Association at (352) 799-0129 or visit the website at www.brooksvilleraid.com.

Hernando Today Correspondent Kim Dame can be reached at damewrites@yahoo.com.

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