December 1, 2006
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.— The Emily Dickinson Museum will host its annual Open House from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9, to celebrate the anniversary of Emily Dickinson’s birth (Dec. 10, 1830). Continuing a beloved tradition, the first 176 guests to the museum will receive a rose offered by an anonymous donor in honor of the poet. The event is free and open to the public.

The Emily Dickinson Museum’s 11th annual “At Home” celebration will include self-guided tours of the Homestead and The Evergreens, parlor music by fiddler Steven Howland and dulcimer player Tim Van Egmond, a poetry reading and special cakes from Dickinson family recipes. In addition, visitors will be invited to create a holiday ornament at the Homestead for the Christmas tree in the parlor of The Evergreens.

Steven Howland has played the fiddle since the early 1980s, inspired by traditional New England-style music and dance. He is a regular caller of contra dances throughout the region. Tim Van Egmond is an accomplished hammered dulcimer player and a member of the contra dance band Swallowtail. He has appeared on National Public Radio’s “A Prairie Home Companion” and at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

The Emily Dickinson Museum: The Homestead and The Evergreens is owned by the Trustees of Amherst College. The museum has a separate board of governors and, with limited support from the college, is expected to fund its operating and capital improvement objectives independently. From November through December 6 the museum is open Wednesday and Saturday, 1 to 5 p.m. The museum is closed mid-December through March 1. The Emily Dickinson Museum is a member of Museums10, a partnership of 10 museums in the Pioneer Valley. For more information about the museum, please call 413/542-8161 or visit the museum's website.