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On Friday, December 2, the State Capitol, Mississippi Governor’s Mansion, Old Capitol Museum, Manship House Museum, Eudora Welty House and Garden, and William F. Winter Building will be decked out in traditional holiday decorations for the twenty-first annual Christmas by Candlelight Tour. Free transportation will take visitors from site to site, with parking available at the Old Capitol and the State Capitol. The tour begins at 4:30 p.m. and runs until 8:30 p.m.

The Mississippi State Capitol returns as a site of the Candlelight Tour this year. Music performances include “Christmas Jazz at Sunset” under the direction of Bob Davidson, director of Senate Legislative Services. The group features a rhythm section with horns and will perform in the Rotunda throughout the evening. Punch and cookies will be served.

The circa-1842 Mississippi Governor's Mansion will be decorated with seasonal greenery. The East Garden will be open, and a very special guest from the North Pole will greet visitors. Treats prepared by Mansion chef Matt Huffman will be served along with hot chocolate. Traditional Christmas piano music will be performed inside the mansion by Dan Michael Colbert from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and Sam Brady from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

The Old Capitol, Jackson’s oldest building, will be decked with greenery in the style used in 1840 when local women prepared the building for a visit by Andrew Jackson. Garlands will hang around the rotunda railing on the second floor and the stairwells, and wreaths will decorate the exterior of the building. Performing will be First Presbyterian Day School, 4:30-4:50; Hinds Community College Choir, 5-5:30; Isabel Elementary Choir 5:40-6:10; Mississippi Girlchoir, 6:20-6:50; Murrah Singers, 7-7:20; and Florence Elementary choir, 7:30-8:15. The Hinds Community College Brass Ensemble will play between the choir sets throughout the evening.

The 1857 Gothic Revival Manship House Museum will open its doors for a Victorian Christmas. Musical performances will include the Figgy Pudding Singers of St. Phillips Episcopal Church, 5–5:45 p.m. and the Bonnie Blue Band singing songs of the Civil War era from 6–8 p.m. Bread pudding provided by Drago’s Restaurant will be available to guests.

Visitors to the Eudora Welty House and Garden will tour the first floor of Welty’s house featuring holiday photographs and a selection of hand-crafted greeting cards from architect Hays A. Town, composer Lehman Engle, photographer Bruce Weber, artists Mildred Wolfe, Barry Moser, and Ethel Wright Mohamed. Bread pudding and hot apple cider will be served as Taylor and Valley Hildebrand provide musical entertainment.

At the William Winter Building, the ever-popular model town of Possum Ridge and its trains will also be on display. Historic holiday-themed home movies will be played and historic railroad depot photographs from around the state will be on display. There will be opportunities for photos at our selfie station. Hot apple cider will be served.

For more information about the 21st Annual Christmas by Candlelight Tour call 601-576-6800 or email info@mdah.ms.gov.

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