Ash Lawn-Highland Annual Events

For details and specific dates, call (434) 293-8000.

February – African-American History Month events
African-American History Month is commemorated at Ash Lawn-Highland with demonstrations and academic events, such as discussions and lectures. Our 2013 offerings included an open-hearth cooking demonstration—including a discussion of African influences on American cooking—and a book talk about slaves’ participation in the War of 1812.

BookFestival-2013-Small-No-VFH-No-Date-No-Cville-ColorMarch 23 – Virginia Festival of the Book
Ash Lawn-Highland partners with the Virginia Festival of the Book ( in an ever-popular annual book talk on a subject relating to James Monroe and his long career in public service. (Did you know, for example, that Monroe held more elected offices than any other President?) On March 23 at 1:30 p.m., historian Alan Taylor will discuss his newest book entitled The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832.

April 19 – Sheep Shearing
Don’t miss Ash Lawn-Highland’s Annual Sheep Shearing at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 19! Watch as our sheep don their new spring coats and try your hand at carding and spinning! You’ll even learn about embroidery, needlework, and natural dyes from the Monroe era. For more information call (434) 293-8000.

April 28 – Commemoration of James Monroe’s Birthday
What have you learned about James Monroe lately!? Ash Lawn-Highland commemorates James Monroe’s Birthday with topics relevant to Monroe’s participation in important aspects of early American history, including the Revolutionary War, the expansion of the United States, national defense, and the establishment of American foreign policy. For more information call (434) 293-8000.

HighlandDriveMay 17 – Field Day and James Monroe 5k Run
A new event in 2014, Field Day is replacing Ash Lawn-Highland’s annual Wine Festival, a local favorite for two decades. Join us from 2 to 7 p.m. at the Hilltop Pavilion for relay races and activities for all ages, face painting and balloon making, food truck eats, wine tastings, farm tours, a bounce house, and live bluegrass and country music by local favorite Rockfish Gap. As part of the American Heritage race series, the event will feature the 2nd Annual James Monroe 5k cross-country race and children’s 1-miler at the historic estate. General admission tickets are $10 or $5 for children under 12. Families pay no more than $25. For more information, visit or call (434) 293-8000. To register for the race, visit

June 30 – Celebration of Elizabeth Kortright Monroe’s Birthday
The celebration of Mrs. Monroe’s Birthday is a light-hearted social event, during which our visitors play period games, and learn about customs of the day, women’s work of the period, and Mrs. Monroe’s role in her husband’s political career. For more information call (434) 293-8000.

July 4 – Celebration of Independence Day, 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Celebrate this day of national importance at the home of a Revolutionary War veteran. Our festivities feature holiday-specific interpretive activities. Visitors are welcome to bring picnic lunches. *Current members of the U.S. military and U.S. veterans receive the local admission rate.

ACF2013August – Albemarle County Fair and Historic Craft Days
New for 2014 Ash Lawn-Highland will offer a selection of demonstrations and exhibits about historic crafts in conjunction with the Albemarle County Fair. Bigger and better than ever, Ash Lawn-Highland hosts the Albemarle County Fair for the third year, with a wonderful offerings of home arts, agricultural produce, exhibits, and locally raised animals. Using indoor and outdoor exhibit space, this event promises traditional family fun in a historic setting. For more information go to

September – Public, Private, and Home Educators’ Day
Come see Ash Lawn-Highland’s offerings for K-12 education! The afternoon features craft and workshop demonstrations, colonial games, and living history presentations. Join us and learn more about school group visits and workshops. All teachers—including home educators—receive free admission from 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

October – Crafts Weekends
Enjoy participating in historic crafts during several weekends in October. Try your hand at making marbleized paper, or learn the art of paper quilling. For more info call (434) 293-8000.

November 11 – Veteran’s Day
Honor U.S. veterans at the home of James Monroe, one of only three U.S. presidents to fight in the American Revolution. Call (434) 293-8000 for more information and ceremony times.

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November – Annual Open House
Ash Lawn-Highland holds an open house on a Sunday in November to welcome all local residents with free admission and special program offerings. The interpretive program varies each year. Call (434) 293-8000 or for specifics.


December – Highland Decorated for Christmas IMG_0044thumb During the month of December, Monroe’s home—Highland—is decorated for the holidays. Take in the charming house interiors and enjoy greenery and botanical arrangements that highlight the carefully restored historic home!