November 22, 2003
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.- The Emily Dickinson Museum will host its annual Open House on Saturday, Dec. 13, from 1 to 4 p.m. in honor of Emily Dickinson's birthday (December 10, 1830). The event is free and open to the public.

The Emily Dickinson Museum is comprised of the Dickinson Homestead, birthplace and home of the poet, and The Evergreens next door, the home of Austin and Susan Dickinson, the poet's brother and sister-in-law. The Museum was created earlier this year when Amherst College, which already owned the Homestead, acquired ownership of The Evergreens from the Martha Dickinson Bianchi Trust.

The Birthday Open House has become a much-anticipated annual tradition in the Amherst area. Visitors can enjoy the two houses on self-guided tours. An anonymous donor will once again offer a rose to the first 173 visitors to the Homestead. Visitors also have the chance to sample the coconut cake recipe from a friend of Emily Dickinson's, as well as the poet's own gingerbread recipe. An activity guide is available for children. At The Evergreens, visitors will hear how Amherst residents celebrated Christmas in the second half of the nineteenth century and about Susan Dickinson's innovative holiday decorations that scandalized the family's puritan neighbors.

The Museum is located on Main Street in Amherst. For more information about the Open House, please call 413/542-8161 or visit Accessible parking is available at the Homestead; all other vehicles are asked to park on the street or in an Amherst College lot on Spring Street. Call for more information about accessibility. The Museum will be closed for the winter from Dec. 14, through Feb. 29.