Free event! Come a-Wassailing Jan 16!

Winter Wassail Celebration 2010

Saturday, January 16th, 11am-6pm

…“The villagers form a circle around the largest apple tree, hang pieces of toast soaked in cider in the branches for the robins, who represent the ‘good spirits’ of the tree”…

Wassail Image 1

Join friends, family and neighbours! Sea Cider invites you to toast the orchard for a bountiful harvest next season with hot cider cocktails, swedish candles, song and celebration. Contribute to creating good intentions for the harvest and New Year by adding a wish or blessing to the Wassail Wish Tree.

The Wassail is a centuries old English tradition practiced  in cider making regions.  Intended to awaken the orchard from it’s winter slumber, the trees are blessed for an abundant harvest.  Cider is poured over the roots of one of the orchard trees, and toast is hung in the branches by a Wassail “King” and “Queen” while traditional songs are sung with much noisemaking and merriment to ward off bad spirits.

In a Medieval theme, performances of seasonal songs dating from the 1500s and a long sword dance are scheduled throughout the day by “The Linden Singers” and the “Island Thyme Morris Dancers”.  Nearing sunset, the “Quicksbottom Morris Men” will perform a Mummers Play, traditionally done to celebrate the death of the old year and the birth of the new year.  The Wassail and blessing of the Wish Tree will be performed twice–first at approximately 2:15 pm, and again at 4:00-ish.

Complimentary samples of Sea Cider’s own hot mulled cider will be paired with period inspired food such as rustic venison ragout by Ambrosia Catering.  Owner Bruce Jordan will be hosting cidery tours every half hour from 11:30am-1:30pm, and 3pm.

Free community event with good fun and great food. An abundance of free parking. Come raise a glass!

Wassail: a contraction of the Anglo Saxon term wæs hæil, meaning “Be healthy”.

**This an indoor event but please dress warmly as portions of the tour are outside.**