The first re-enacts the overtaking of Camp Dick by Confederate soldiers in October 1862, and the second portrays Union troops winning the camp back the next day, Teater said.
“That’s historically accurate,” he said. “The Confederate camp lasted only 24 hours.”
Children whose interest may not peak with the facts and figures of the battle can join in period games such as stickhorse races and three-legged relays prior to the reenactment, Teater said.
As the children play, older attendees can witness an 1860 ladies tea.
But the real fun kicks off after the battle during a formal 1860s ball that is open to the public for the first time this year, Teater said. Re-enactors still will sport uniforms but other gentlemen are welcome to come in pants and a nice shirt and ladies in a sundress or other similar attire, he said. Everyone should also bring their dancing shoes, because the event features musicians playing Civil War era tunes and a “caller” shouting the steps to period dances like the Virginia Reel, he said.
“I hope it will show how the soldiers and ladies and everybody relaxed when they could,” Teater said. “It was something the soldiers really enjoyed because they could have fun and forget about dying for a while.”
After Saturday’s party comes Sunday’s 1860s church service, which has garnered Battle of Lancaster events an unusual nickname.
“Lancaster is starting to be known as the baptizing re-enactment,” Teater said.
Several people have chosen the ceremony for their Christian re-birth, including three last year and one already singed up this year, he said. The river doesn’t supply the water like it may have in 1860, but local fire departments have taken up the task, bringing tanks along as well, he said.
With all the events, Teater said he can’t pick a favorite part of the weekend, which also includes a stone dedication in Lancaster Cemetery and day-long skits on Sunday.
“I’m excited about the whole weekend,” he said. “I think it’s a good chance for people to get to the learn history of the county.”