Sent 6/20/14
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The Great Dickens Christmas Fair Missive
Great Dickens Christmas Fair 2014 - June Missive
Notes from your Missive Maven:

Hello everyone, it's been quite a while since our last missive and there is much news. Time Travel weekends are almost upon us, new show proposals are now due for the Dickens Fair and The Great Exhibition Stage is casting. There are memorials scheduled for Phyllis Patterson and Don Kelly, and a fundraiser for Danielle Adams. Please see below for further information.


Please remember to contact the folks referenced in each notice above, rather than hitting "reply".

Need to change your email address for or unsubscribe from the missives? Want to read past missives? Please visit this page:

Cat Taylor
Entertainment Director, Missive & Social Media Maven
In This Missive
Celebrating Phyllis ~ A Gypsy Forest Sunset Picnic (July 13th)
Orientation for Season 5 of Red Barn Productions' "Time Travel Weekends" starts June 28th
Dickens Fair Entertainment Proposals Due
Early Casting for the Great Exhibition Stage
Celebration of the Life of Don Kelly (June 28th)
Party Fundraiser for Danielle Adams (June 29th)

Celebrating Phyllis ~ A Gypsy Forest Sunset Picnic (July 13th)


(from Kevin and Leslie Patterson)




Join us for an evening celebration to honor Phyllis Patterson's Life  in the Great Meadow at the wooded Indian Valley Campus of the College of Marin.

Wear your most colorful "forest gypsy" fashions and sensible footware.


Please RSVP at

 Bring a "supper" picnic, a blanket, and lawn chairs.

There will be shade from trees after 6pm. 

 Children welcome.  Activities will be provided ~ making gypsy rope and learning simple dances.

No alcohol may be brought onto the campus. 

Beer and wine will be served at a no-host bar.  I.D. required.

Picnic from 5:30 - 7:30; program from 7:30 - 9:30pm.

Free on-campus parking.  Enter at Lot 2, walk across the bridge & follow the banners.


We will all be ALL creating a 200' long Gypsy Rope made from fabric and ribbon from all of US. So... please bring a strip of fabric or a ribbon to add. If you are unable to attend, you can mail it to PO Box 1768 Novato CA, 94948 and we will add it for you. Approximate size: 1-1.5" wide and 18-24" long.


There are nice articles on Phyllis in the:

New York Times

San Francisco Chronicle

Los Angeles Times

Digital Journal



~Phyllis Ann Patterson-Stimbert January 25, 1932 - May 18, 2014~

Her obituary is available at - the home of the Patterson Family events archive.


Orientation for Season 5 of Red Barn Productions' "Time Travel Weekends" starts June 28th


(from Robert Young) 


You are hereby invited to join in the fun!       

Orientation - workshops - rehearsal weekend:  June 28/29
Opening - 5th season of Time Travel Weekends:  July 5/6
Final weekend:  August 23/24
(Gold Rush Days - Labor Day weekend is not yet decided.)

To read past Time Travel Weekends missives, subscribe to the missive list, or change your e-mail address, please click this link:

The RBP directors and how to find them:

Gary Grossman  <>
--  Direction & Development  
Julie Kowing  <>
--  Commissary Coordinator  
Liz Martin  <>
--  Costume Designer & Coordinator 
Julie St. Germaine  <>
--  Show Development and Director
Wells & Kathleen Twombly  <>
--  Victorian Academy, Historical Reenactments, Parades & Peculiarities
Jeffrey Weissman  <>
--  Budget Coordination & Bookings, Characterization & Comedy  
Robert Young  <>
--  Executive Director & all-around Gofer 
Historically Yours,

Robert and the directors team
at Red Barn Productions

Dickens Fair Entertainment Proposals Due


Here's the public announcement, I know most of you already know all these rules...

Yes Virginia, it's already time to start talking about the entertainment for the Great Dickens Christmas Fair for 2014. If you have a new show or group that you'd like to propose, please visit this webpage to find out more about performing at the fair.


Please keep the following in mind if you are proposing a show:

No fire performances
No prerecorded music/audio, video/animation
Costumes, language, sets and props must be appropriate for mid-19th century London (not Renaissance)
No modern performance styles (no aerial silks, etc.) or obvious modern (vs. Victorian) technology
Able to fit on available stage sizes


Please consult all of the information on the performer's web page before proposing a show.
Proposals may be sent to entertainment director Cat Taylor at




PS If you directed a show or group last year and have not gotten back to me as to whether you are interested in participating this year, please contact  me asap at the above email address. Thanks.


Early Casting for the Great Exhibition Stage


(from Gregory Seeley)


We are starting early with casting suggestions for the Great Exhibition stage to give those interested plenty of time to do their research and create their presentation. Here are our a few figures we'd love to see at the stage:

Joseph Lister, (5 April 1827 - 10 February 1912) was a British surgeon and a pioneer of antiseptic surgery

Sir Titus Salt, 1st Baronet (20 September 1803 - 29 December 1876) was a manufacturer, politician and philanthropist. He was key in the production and popularization of worsted wool.


Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin (1 March 1812 - 14 September 1852) was an English architect, designer, artist and critic, chiefly remembered for his pioneering role in the Gothic Revival style; his work culminated in the interior design of the Palace of Westminster.  


Sir William Jackson Hooker, FRS (6 July 1785 - 12 August 1865) was an English systematic botanist and organiser, and botanical illustrator. He enjoyed the friendship and support of Sir Joseph Banks for his exploring, collecting and organising work.  


James Bullough (1800-68) The Lancashire Loom was a semi-automatic power loom invented by James Bullough and William Kenworthy in 1842. 


Eleanor Anne Ormerod (11 May 1828 - 19 July 1901) was an English entomologist. 


Anna Maria Hussey (5 June 1805-26 August 1853) was a British mycologist, writer, and illustrator.  


Mary Jane Seacole (1805 - 14 May 1881), née Grant,[1][2] was a Jamaican-born woman who set up a 'British Hotel' behind the lines during the Crimean War, which she described as "a mess-table and comfortable quarters for sick and convalescent officers," and provided succour for wounded servicemen on the battlefield. 


Jane C. Webb Loudon (August 19, 1807 - July 13, 1858) was an English author and early pioneer of science fiction. She also created the first popular gardening manuals, as opposed to specialist horticultural works, and contributed to the work of her husband, John Claudius Loudon.



Important: About portraying a character at the Great Exhibition Preview stage.

This stage at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair is designed to portray a run up to the Great Exhibition of 1851. This was a tremendous event in British history and was a huge success for Britain, both in terms of promoting scientific advancements, and establishing Britain as a world leader in almost every field. We seek therefore to create a sort of Victorian Exploratorium, a stage where people can meet and interact with the great scientists and inventors of the age... As if they were actually in London in 1850.

If you would like to portray a character at this stage we are going to ask you to do the following.
1~ Know your scientist and and his/her work. You will need to be able to speak to the public *as* the scientist/inventor, present their work as if it were your own and answer questions posed by the audience (some of whom may know nothing, others may ask you knowledgeable questions).
2~ Have a display, working model, or something to show regarding the scientist/inventor's work. 
3~ Look like your scientist/inventor. Take some time to research their appearance and tailor yours to match. We would like it that after a visitor to the fair goes home and, intrigued by what he learned at the fair googles the inventor's name, the images they see will bring home the learning experience for them... They will feel like they met the real person (and for the young ones, let's convince them they have!)
We realize this can be a tall order, but we feel that to make a great stage is worth the effort, and the audience will get that much more enjoyment out of it.


If you are interested please contact Gregory Seeley at


Celebration of the Life of Don Kelly (June 28th)


(from Marnie Wilson)


Singers! Dancers! Men at Arms! and the Rest of You!

We are celebrating DK's life with food, drink and music. Don always said that he never wanted a funeral what he wanted was a big party!


When: June 28th, 2014 11am - 3pm - The horns will blow and we will start the celebration, Peter Overstreet will lead us to begin with and there will be a chance for others to tell DK stories. 
Where: Sherwood Forest (Hanns Park) - Skyline Blvd & Redwood Street, Vallejo, CA

What to bring: 

This is a potluck please bring food to share, preferred drinks (non alcoholic or alcoholic) and the park has BBQ pits so if you would like to BBQ please bring you own briquettes and grilling tools. Some beer will be provided - Thank you Carol. 

Please if you have your faire mug, plate, and eating utensils (NO SWORDS) please bring them. It will cut down on waste. 
Your own chair or blanket to sit on, we have reserved the park but there are limited tables. 
Musical instruments

 Other ways to help: bring extra plates, napkins, cups, water, utensils, garbage bags: So that we don't end up with too much.


Please coordinate with Sandi (Thank you Sandi) by sending an email to:

Thank you, 
Marnie & Family

- at Sherwood Forest, Vallejo. 

Note: Don "Disney" Kelly passed April 15th from pneumonia, with his chosen family at his side. 


PS There is also a GiveForward site to help Don's chosen family as they close out the Vallejo house at 


Party Fundraiser for Danielle Adams (June 29th)


(from Ananda Wolchock and Sandi Tee)


Our own Danielle Adams has been fighting a rare and aggressive form of cancer, called "ampullary cancer", since just after Dickens Fair, 2012. You may know Danielle from Northern California Renaissance Faire, the Northern California Pirate Festival and the Great Dickens Christmas Fair. You may have seen her working at an ale stand dressed as a mermaid, in the Dark Garden window or enticing green faeries. 


One June 28th, her friends will be hosting a fundraiser at 
The Hub 350 Georgia Street, Vallejo 94590  

This will be vaguely luau themed! No roasting pigs but if you have an Aloha shirt or dress, this is the place to wear it!


The goal for this day is threefold. One is to be a party for Danielle to get to visit with as many of you as possible, second is to raise enough money to at least cover all of Danielle's bills for the next six months and allow her some breathing room in her budget. Third is if we raise enough, she would like one more bucket list trip, this time to go see The Mouse in LA.


This will be a potluck event but PLEASE only bring finger foods, nothing that requires serving equipment. We are providing plates and napkins and will be selling wine as well. The venue will have soda/water/coffee also for sale so please don't bring beverages for the potluck. Also please provide an ingredient list so that those of us with allergies don't die!


We will be raffling off a variety of lovely items and will also have a small silent auction for some of the bigger ticket items. Many people have donated some wonderful things:


Two tickets to see the Giants vs the Dodgers on July 27th

A very pretty handmade quilt

Various other handmade lovelies

CDs from all of our favorites in the faire community

Lots of other great things, come and see!


If you can't make it to the party, but still want to help Danielle out you can send money via her sister's Paypal to

If you have questions or concerns feel free to email me at or Sandi Tee at  

Can't wait to see all of you soon!! Invite all your friends!

Quick Links...
The Great Dickens Christmas Fair Website
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Contact Information
For specific questions regarding performing at the Fair, please email Cat Taylor
If your group would like to perform at the Fair for just one day (school caroling groups, etc.) 
please email Robert Young
For specific questions regarding vending at the Fair please email Vendors
For specific questions the beverage department please email Beverage
For questions regarding costumes, please email Costumes
To join the public email list, please click here
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The Great Dickens Christmas Fair | Red Barn Productions | PO Box 1768 | Novato | CA | 94948

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