In just one week I’ll be attending my first ever Annual General Meeting of the Jane Austen Society of North America! The AGM takes place in a different city every year, so I feel very lucky that this year the location is just a few hours’ drive away from me in Louisville Kentucky.
I’m very excited by the different talks and presentations scheduled for the weekend. Amanda Vickery, historian and TV presenter, is one of the featured speakers! Since I don’t have any clothes appropriate to Jane Austen’s era (yet!), I won’t be participating in some of the festivities, like a promenade and ball.
Dear readers, are you joining the Janeites in Louisville? If so, I’d love to meet you in person! I’ll bring my calling cards! Or if you’ve ever been to past AGMs, do you have advice for a novice like me?
I went to the annual Jane Austen Festival in Lousiville Kentucky this past Saturday. It’s held at Historic Locust Grove, which was built around 1790. The house has been restored and is open as a museum, and served mostly as a backdrop for the Festival.
One of the center-pieces of the event is the Regency Promenade. I didn’t find out whether the attempt was successful to beat the world record for number of people gathered in Regency Dress, but it was an impressive group. I was just an observer, as I don’t have any Regency attire (yet). Maybe next year I’ll join the throng!
I was particularly struck by this stately lady- she had all the poise and grandeur of a Lady Catherine De Bourgh or a Dowager Viscountess Dalrymple!
After the promenade, two gentleman attempted to settle a matter of honour. Too bad their powder was damp- only two shots were successfully fired, and none found their mark (to the relief of all the ladies present, I’m sure).
The bar for authentic kit was set high by the Royal Navy re-enactment group, H.M.S. Acasta, who held the duel and had an encampment at the festival.
The Locust Grove estate has the perfect ambience for a Jane Austen event, and luckily the weather was cool and overcast. I enjoyed the shopping, and picked up a few books that will help me become more Accomplished. I missed out on some of the activities that required advance tickets and appropriate attire- there’s a Grand Ball in the evening that must be quite a sight. The enjoyable day left me mulling over plans for next year!