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Programs & Events of 2020



Come visit Harriton House! To sign up for any of our clases or for any questions call us at (610) 525-0201.

Daily visits and t
ours through the historic Harriton House:

Tours are available Wednesday through Saturday, from 10:00am to 4:00pm by appointment only. Admission to the house is $6.00 per adult, students free.  Group visits of more than 5 persons should make their reservations at least a week in advance. 

The grounds of the park are free and open to the public from dawn to dusk everyday. Come stroll along the grounds and visit our barn animals. 

School Groups and visits:

We invite teachers and students to utilize Harriton as an educational resource, and we will work with teachers to tailor a program to specific interests or curriculum needs in field trips.  We especially enjoy working with homeschooled individuals and groups.  Please call us to discuss your needs or requests. 

Click on one of the red links here to see a specific program or just scroll through the page below.


All programs temporarily postponed
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Turn, Turn, Turn, Introduction to Woodturning

Everything from bowls to candlesticks to staircase parts and fountain pens can be made on the lathe. Lathe turning is a popular hobby for young and old(er), and it was historically a popular pastime of nobility.

Check out Main Line School Nigh or Chester County School Night for dates and times.

Get a lesson in sharpening (which might even come in handy around Thanksgiving - turkeys as well as wood need sharp tools!). Come and be introduced to the pleasures of creating your personal pen, candlestick, baby rattle, or spinning top (take THAT home to your grandchildren and see what happens!). We will look at the historic Harriton House and its contents to see lathe-turned objects from the 1700's.  

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Beginning Blacksmithing: From Colonial Times to Present

Beginning Blacksmithing will be offered at Harriton House on Saturdays on these dates: 

March 21st 9:00am-3:00pm

Come and work with Harriton Curator Bruce Gill and master blacksmith Stephen Sears, of Sears IronWorks in Ottsville, PA. You will learn about tools and fire and coal and metals. There will be a reference library of books and forged iron objects to see and handle. You will get hands-on experience in shaping small items of forged iron (steel actually), and you will go home with the product of your labor and instruction. Younger, older, or somewhere in the middle, or whether you think you have large biceps or small ones, you can participate.

Call us at (610) 525- 0201 to reserve your spot, the class is $115 including materials.

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Bookbinding Workshop Series ~ Beginning Bookbinding


Come to Harriton House on April 4th to learn how to make a book from scratch. Paper sewn together with your own hand will be bound on the spine with genuine leather, with the cover face finished in exotic marbled paper! Bookbinder Ramon Townsend, who trained at Colonial Williamsburg, will join us to teach, step by step, how to make your own hand sewn leather bound book! Bring your volumes in disrepair for a free evaluation.

Reservations absolutely required. To RSVP, you can do so through Eventbrite, or by calling our office at: 610 525 0201 or by email:  The class will take place from 10 AM - 4 PM and is limited to 6 participants.  Course fee of $100.00 includes all supplies, plus coffee & donuts provided. Bring a bagged lunch.

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Chef Walter Staib, City Tavern
The Ninth Annual Epicurean Extravaganza

Postponed till further notice


 Come to the ninth annual Epicurean Extravaganza at the historic City Tavern in Philadelphia on April 16 from 6 pm -8 pm. This major fund raising food event is being prepared for Harriton by internationally known chef Walter Staib, who is the proprietor of the City Tavern.  Chef Staib is an author and the television personality who hosts the Emmy-winning series entitled A Taste of History on PBS, in which historic Harriton has been featured.  This event is by invitation or by interest. This is a full buffet dinner event complete with an open bar. A portion of your ticket price is a tax-deductible contribution to the Harriton Association for the continued operations of historic Harriton House in Bryn Mawr.  Save the date to come and graze the cuisine which was enjoyed by the founders of our nation! For reservations or further information please telephone Harriton House at 610-525-0201.  Tickets are $125.00 per person.  A portion of all ticket prices are tax deductible.  You may write a check or purchase your ticket through PayPal at  This is an event not to be missed---and come hungry!



ticket reservations

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The Art of Beekeeping: a Beginning Beekeeping Course

Learn about the importance of the honeybee to our landscape.  Dress up in a beesuit and participate in the installation of package bees in the apiary at historic Harriton. Taste the differences in various honeys and savor the taste of Harriton's award winning honey. You will attend a meeting of the Harriton Beekeepers group, where you can meet and rub elbows with local beekeepers from the age of 11 to 89.   Coffee, donuts, and lots of good information provided! 

April 18th from 9:30 am to Noon

April 25th from 9:30 am to Noon

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The Harriton Association's Annual Meeting and Lecture

The Annual Meeting and Reception of the Harriton Association will be held on April 26th, at 4:00pm in the Educational Building of Harriton House.

During a brief business meeting the Membership will elect new Directors of the Harriton Association and will recieve the audited 2019 financial report. Several brief reports on current activities will also be received.

A brief reception will follow a presentation of educational value, featuring Lancaster County artisanal cheeses, and a few other small delicacies. This free event is open to members of the Harriton Association by invitation.  RSVP's are necessary by April 20th. Please phone for your reservation on 610 525 0201.

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Bookbinding Workshop Series ~ Full Leather Bookbinding

In a full day workshop building upon the bookbinding class, we will gather on May 2nd to learn how to emboss and decorate the leather of our book covers, working with Colonial Williamsburg trained Ramon Townsend. The students will take home a 3/4 leather or fully leather bound book. They will learn new techniques that are not taught in the basic course such as Rounding & Backing; Headbanding; and Blind & Gold Tooling the leather.

All materials are included, and tools will be provided.

Cost per Person: $100, and the class lasts about 5-6 hrs with a lunch break.

Class size is limited to 6 people. Participants must be over the age of 14. Participants under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.

Again, pre-registrations are necessary and classes are limited to 6 students per class (lots of personal attention and help!)

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Bookbinding Workshop Series ~ Antique Book Repair and First Aid for Old Books

Join us Saturday May 16th to learn how repair the damage of the toll of time on your treasured antique volumes.

Participants will be taught basic book repair techniques, and in the process learn about the book’s components and traditional hand bookbinding methods. They will dissect a book and reassemble it. Particpants will deconstruct the book by detaching the covers and spine; removing the sewing; and disassembling the text. They will then reconstruct their book by performing page repair; resewing the text; and rehinging the covers and spine.

You don't have to have your own book to attend, if you still would like to learn this skill we will provide you with one. All additional materials are included, and tools will be provided.

Cost per Person: $100/Adult 

Class size is limited to 4 people. Participants must be over the age of 18.

Length of Class: Typical class lasts about 5-6 hours with a lunch break

Registrations are required

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Furniture Studies at Harriton House with Furniture Historian Philip Zimmerman

Come learn about the history of the furniture on dispaly at Harriton House on Saturday May 30th from 10:00 am to 3:30 pm with Furniture Historian Philip Zimmerman. Lunch will be provided! More details to come.

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Dairy Days Ice Cream Social! Honoring Fathers on Father's Day!

Come and eat very special Guernsey ice cream at an old fashioned ice cream social on Father's Day, Sunday afternoon, June 21st, 2020, 2:00 PM

SPECIAL TREAT for Father's Day:  Father's (or any reasonable facsimilie thereof) eat ice cream for free that afternoon. 

RESERVATIONS REQUIRED!  See and meet the "Guernsey Girls",  Guernsey cows from the last 100% Guernsey herd in Pennsylvania which will be visiting historic Harriton for the week.  The ice cream to be served is Yoder's Ice Cream, made in Lancaster County  from rich Guernsey milk and cream.   Don't miss it!  $6.00 per person, $30.00 for families of 6 or more (Dad's eat free!)

From 1909 until almost 1930, Harriton was known as the Harriton Guernsey Dairy. This farm, which provided rich milk and cream to the neighborhood, was  an active and important participant in a flourishing dairy industry in southeastern Pennsylvania. Today  we are familiar with concerns about our food supply and the debates over pesticides, growth hormones, and unpronouncable chemical names listed as ingredients in what we eat.  This is not the first time that the American public has become aware of  what is in our food.  You may remember reading Upton Sinclair's The Jungle when you were in high school.  The growth and quality of Pennsylvania's modern dairy industry is directly related to similar concerns for milk at the turn of the 20th century, and the Harriton Guernsey Dairy  was part of that evolution. We will explore through programs and an exhibit the early 20th century dairies in and near Lower Merion Township, including herd types, estates, and a collection of embossed milk bottles from 35 dairies - only one of which still sells milk today (can you guess which one?).  We will have programs for children,  a trip to a dairy farm, Guernsey cows visiting the Harriton park ,  a small exhibit of old milk bottles and dairy equipment,and the ice-cream social.  Reservations required. Please e-mail us at, or phone us at 610 525 0201. Or you can purchase your tickets online by clicking the link below: 

Ice Cream Social
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Campers carding wool from the sheep.
Harriton Apprenticeship Summer Camp

 Our summer camps allow today's youngsters to learn to feed sheep and chickens, a horse and to bottle feed calves. We'll work with traditional tools in woodworking, blacksmithing, paper marbling, bookbinding and weaving. We'll tour through the historic house and learn about antique houses and furniture. We'll run down and have lunch on the creekbed, and on the last day we have our big picnic! Harriton's "Apprenticeships" are designed for children aged 11-16. Our summer camps in the 2020 season will be run on these dates with the following themes:


June 29 - July 3

July 6 - July 10

August 10 - August 14


Camps run from 9:30am to 3:00pm. Each week is priced at $325.00 per child, for children of members of the Harriton Association only. Fee includes all materials and the big picnic on the last day of the week. Please call (610) 525 - 0201 to reserve your child's spot in our program, then send your completed registration form to, or by snail mail to P.O. Box 1364, Bryn Mawr, PA 19010

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Annual Beekeeping and Honey Festival

Honeybees are kept in the Harriton Park, and our annual public beekeeping program will be held on July 25th from 11 am- 1pm - weather permitting.  Adults and children can try on beesuits, visit the hives, and help extract honey. Come and learn about the importance of the honeybee to our landscape and to our food supply.  This annual  beekeeping program and honey harvest is held in memory of beekeeper Goeffrey Schmidt. This is a free event and open to the public --- BUT RESERVATIONS are absolutely necessary.  This is a family event; children are welcome, and we will have special a table of activities for little ones. Please call or write for reservations and information. 


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The 30th Annual Harriton Farmstead Fair

The 30th Annual Harriton Farmstead Fair is scheduled for Saturday, September 26th, 10am to 4pm (rain or shine). This major event in Lower Merion Township features crafts, antiques, sheep herding, pony rides, historic house tours, childrens' games, muskets and soldiers, blacksmiths, stone carvers, cabinetmakers, spinners, skep [beehive] weavers, Bluegrass music, falconry and other birds of prey, and much more.  The Fair also features the Harriton Attic Treasures Booth, which is the best flea market on the Main Line, the Harriton Farm stand featuring flowers and organic produce (some of which is from the Harriton garden).   Lapps Country Market will be roasting chickens and ribs for lunch.  The historic 1704 house will be open for tours during the day.   Don't miss the day!

All of these activities and your contributions help to assure Harriton's continued operation as an historic site.  Call  610 525 0201 for further information. And be sure to COME TO THE FAIR.   Visit our Photo Gallery for views of past Harriton Fairs.   Contact us at 610 525 0201 or for further information. Let us know you are coming - sign up through Eventbrite below for a chance to win a prize!

Harriton Farmstead Fair RSVP Link



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Autumn Apple Tasting

Can't find a good apple at the supermarket?  Join us for the annual Harriton Apple Tasting celebration on October the 24th at 3:00 pm. $6.00 admission. Children under 6 years are free to enter. as well as those who have pies to submit into the apple pie contest.  Brief apple presentation PROMPTLY at 3:00 with a tasting of delights following.!

If you bring your best apple pie or creation, the judges might just crown you apple King/Queen of Harriton for 2019!!

So come taste, decide, and buy your autumn apples not available in the supermarket. Pumpkins also available.  It is THAT time of year.  RSVP's ARE A MUST.

General Admission (Children under 6 free)


Apples are a fruit to love. Come and  sample heirloom varieties of America's favorite fruit - tart, sweet, crunchy, soft-fleshed, yellow, pink, and green.  Some of our apple varieties are over 300 years old, others are more modern..  Apples were extremely important in colonial America.  They were eaten "out of hand";  they were baked into pies or baked by themselves; they were cut and dried into "schnitz" for use all winter long; or, they were converted to cider (hard and soft) and vinegar. Learn who Johnny Appleseed was (yes, he was a real person) and why he spread the seeds he did.  You will also learn that apples don't "come true" from seed and how we do get the delicious varieties which survive today.  Charles Thomson who lived here at Harriton was a nurseryman who grew apples and other fruits.  All this while you munch apple slices, and partake of a glass of cider. And, if you bring your apple pie for judging you might be inaugurated as Harriton's Apple King or Queen for next year's event! An honor not to be taken lightly!

RESERVATIONS REQUIRED, 610 525 0201 or by pre-payment above. Don't Miss It! Children welcome if well behaved.  Apples will be available for purchase.  

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Pandora's Garden - A Parent and Child Nature Class

This special program for members of the Harriton Association is a toddler nature class designed to stimulate and expand young inquisitive minds. Activities are directed towards children of eighteen months to three years, although babies and children of all ages are welcome and will benefit from play and discovery in the beautiful surroundings of Harriton House. The private cottage in the grounds of Harriton House provides the perfect setting for children and caregivers to explore the wonders of nature together. Children will plant flowers and vegetables in their own private garden. On warm sunny days we will hold teddy-bear picnics, read stories and sing songs in the open air. Creative activities such as painting are also held outside weather permitting. Babies under 6 months are always free. Sessions are seasonal, being held in the spring and in the fall. 


Tuesdays April 14 - June 16

  • 10:00 am - 11:30 am
  • 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

Thursdays April 16 - June 18

  • 10:00 am - 11:30 am


For further information or to register online please visit

Please make your payment out to the Harriton Association. Thank you!



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Be a Blacksmith: Homeschoolers Immersion Series

Beginning Blacksmithing will be offered at Harriton House on Tuesdays, October 6th to November 24th for Homeschoolers aged 12 to16. 

Come and work with Harriton's blacksmiths to learn about tools and fire and coal and metals. There will be a reference library of books and forged iron objects to see and handle. You will get hands-on experience in shaping small items of forged iron (steel actually), and you will go home with the product of your labor and instruction. For homeschoolers and their industrious parents, whether you think you have large biceps or small ones, you can participate. For further information and to register, contact Harriton by e-mail at or by old fashioned telephone at 610 525 0201.

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Classes held through Main Line School Night & Chester County Night School

 Looking for additoional dates? Check out courses offered through both Main Line School Night and Chester County School night at the links below.

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