Press Release: Kick Off To Living History Program For 2021

St. Joseph’s Valley Days brings history to life and is a weekend of family fun for all ages.


Meet historical interpreters in full costume and see how the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph welcomed in the spring season in rural 19th century Maryland at the home of the first native-born American saint 

EMMITSBURG, MD (April 26, 2021) – The National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton is welcoming visitors back to the Shrine and celebrating the spring season with St. Joseph’s Valley Days, its first living history experience of the year, this weekend, April 30, May 1 and May 2.  

We are excited to ring in the spring season with St. Joseph’s Valley Days, a new and exciting living history experience,” said Rob Judge, executive director of the National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.Through history interpreters in full period costume, including our Junior History Interpreters who portray Mother Seton’s students, visitors can experience what it was like during Mother Seton’s lifetime in the very same valley that she called home.” 

St. Joseph’s Valley Days is the Shrine’s newest living history event. Over the course of a weekend, visitors will immerse themselves into spring in St. Joseph’s Valley with opportunities to interact with history interpreters portraying real people from Mother Seton’s world, including her students.  

The event will include historical interpretation, historic home tours, a petting zoo, colonial dance, and outdoor activities. In addition, there is a full schedule of activities for visitors to participate in, including basket weaving, tug-of-war, kite making, a parade of traditional farm animals and more. Visitors are also welcome to bring a picnic lunch to enjoy on the grounds. 

St. Joseph’s Valley Days will be held on Friday, April 30 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, May 1 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, May 2 from noon to 5 p.m. The last admission for each day is 3:30pm. The cost to attend is $10 for adults, $7 for youth, and free for children six and under. Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased at 

The National Shrine of Elizabeth Ann Seton is currently in the middle of a year-long commemoration of the 200th anniversary of Mother Seton’s death. In addition to new living history experiences, other commemoration events and activities include virtual tours of the Basilica and the historical homes on the Shrine’s ground, newly donated artifacts from Mother Seton’s life, and more. To learn more about the National Shrine of Elizabeth Ann Seton, please visit  

The National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton  

Elizabeth Ann Seton is the first native-born U.S. saint. The National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton promotes her life and legacy to inspire everyone. More than 200 years ago, she came to Emmitsburg as a bankrupt widow with five children, and went on to found the first free Catholic school for girls staffed by sisters in the U.S., and the first community of religious women established in the U.S. Today, her legacy includes several religious communities with thousands of sisters, who serve others through schools, social service centers and hospitals throughout the world. Elizabeth Ann Seton was canonized in 1975. Her remains are entombed at the National Shrine that bears her name. For more information, please visit 

# # # 

Contact: Alyssa Zinar |  |  (610) 506-2533 (m)