Of the Keizertimes

After 25 years at Willamette Mission State Park, the Northwest Civil War Council’s annual Civil War reenactment is moving four and half miles east to Antique Powerland.

“We’re still going to have the same battles,” said Steve Robinson, who along with doing public relations for the NWCWC, is also a civilian reenactor. “We’re still going to have the same camps and same demonstrations. It’s just a different location. It’s probably more different for us reenactors than the public coming in. We got really used to the Willamette Mission.”

Each day will begin at 9 a.m. with a battalion dress parade, followed by a morning battle at 11 a.m. and then an afternoon battle at 2 p.m. An artillery demonstration will take place at noon. A church service is scheduled for Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and the reenactment will conclude Monday after the 2 p.m. battle.

Admission, which also includes Antique Powerland museums and exhibits, is $12 for adults and free to children under 12.

Robinson noted the event is particularity educational for kids.

“One demonstration shows them cotton on a branch and explains to them that this is how this shirt started,” he said. “We really try to reach out to families and help kids understand just how different life was back then.”

Robinson said 300 to 400 reenactors are expected throughout the weekend.

Patrons are invited to walk through the camps and ask questions.

“We do our best to really transport people back to 1863,” Robinson said. “We as reenactors, we live in 1863 fromthe time we get there until the time we leave. We’re not just putting on a show. We’re trying to live the time. We’re trying to live in history. It’s not like a performance. We, as much as possible, want people to step back into 1863. We cook 1863. We dress 1863. It’s very authentic. They do a very good job. I’m a civilian but I have great respect for the military reenactors. They do it well.”

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