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A Savannah Christmas Season Celebration

Program Number: 20734RJ
Start and End Dates:
12/12/2013 - 12/17/2013; 12/10/2015 - 12/15/2015;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: Savannah, Georgia
Price starting at: $1,145.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Holidays
Meals: 12; 5 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 4 Dinners    

Federal-style homes decorated in period trimmings, musical celebrations of holiday favorites, and time-honored southern traditions — experience the magic of the holiday season, Savannah-style! Learn about the holiday customs of days gone by as you visit beautifully decorated historic homes that once belonged to notable historic Savannah residents and enjoy a holiday musical extravaganza at a local historic theater.




Highlights

• Enjoy visiting beautiful historic homes decorated for the holidays and open exclusively for Savannah’s annual “Holiday Tour of Homes.”
• Visit the historic Isaiah Davenport House and delight in a presentation on holiday traditions of the period.
• Experience Savannah’s most popular, grand theatrical presentation, “A Christmas Tradition,” in one of the country’s oldest, continually running theaters.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to 1.5 miles per day over uneven terrain, cobblestones; stairs in historic buildings; getting on/off coach bus.




Date Specific Information

12-12-2013, 12-10-2015

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Coordinated by Armstrong Atlantic State University.




Savannah

One of the world’s most beautiful cities, with the largest National Historic Landmark District in the U.S., this is Savannah. Residents celebrate their culture, creativity and distinctive cuisine amid Revolutionary and Civil War battle sites, elegant architecture, lush parks, and more than 20 city squares.



Accommodations
First-class hotel in Savannah's historic district.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Paul Blatner

A native of Savannah and a 14th-generation Southerner, Paul Blatner has the distinct honor of being the co-founder and first curator-director of the Savannah History Museum. He holds master’s degrees in American studies and museum studies from the Smithsonian Institution Program at George Washington University, and is an avid antiques dealer. Paul’s colorful wit combined with his knowledge of Savannah’s past have made him a favorite instructor with Road Scholar participants for over 15 years.
 
Jamie Keena

Jamie Keena is a singer of old songs. His repetoire includes folksongs of America and the British Isles, patriotic airs, and “songs written to order” by Tin Pan Alley composers. He received a B.A. in music from the College of William and Mary, and studied voice for five years. Jamie has researched the roots of popular song classics and the development of the music industry. He accompanies his singing with guitar, banjo, and ukelele, and also plays the fife, hammered dulcimer, and concertina.
 
Christopher Hendricks

Chris Hendricks is a native of Winston-Salem, N.C., and stayed there to be educated at Wake Forest University, where he majored in history and English. He went on to graduate school at William and Mary and specialized in Colonial American history. At William and Mary, he held an apprenticeship in historical archeology, and worked for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Chris taught for a year at the University of Alabama in Huntsville before coming to Armstrong in 1993.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
  Savannah, Georgia 5 nights
 Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Hilton’s Serenity Bedroom Collection. 246 newly renovated guestrooms with beautiful views of Historic Savannah. All rooms have windows that open. Free wireless Internet access in guestrooms and lobby. 32-inch flat screen TVs and MP3 docks. Luxurious Peter Thomas Roth bath products. In-room Cuisinart coffee maker and Lavazza coffee. Ample work space and ergonomic chair. “Print to Desk” service from guestrooms. Valet dry-cleaning/laundryIn-room newspaper delivery. Ironing boards. Hair dryers. Elevators. Lounge. Luggage hold. Room service. Safety deposit box.
  Contact info: 15 East Liberty St.
Savannah, GA 31401 USA
phone: 912-232-9000
web: www.desotohilton.com
  Facility amenities: Pool - rooftop (outdoor) swimming pool & deck. Pool-side cabanas. Full-service restaurant. Bar and lounge Coffee shop/Café featuring Starbucks. Gift Shop. Guest activity/recreation desk. Fitness room. Automated teller machine (ATM). Concierge desk.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Bathroom: King rooms have shower only. Double rooms have shower/tub combo. Rooms w/ HC-accessible baths (roll-in showers) have only 1 bed (double, queen, or king - very limited avail.); not available for same-gender roommates. Grab-bars installed in all types.
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Varies w/ season. Call hotel directly for current rates at 912-443-2021. Subject to availability and Road Scholar rate is not available outside of program dates.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: Varies w/ season. Call hotel directly for current rates at 912-443-2021. Subject to availability and Road Scholar rate is not available outside of program dates.
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Hotel check-in 4:00 p.m.; registration w/ coordinator in lobby between 5:00 - 6:00 p.m. You will be staying at Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District that night.
  End of Program:
program ends 10:30 a.m. after morning class. Hotel check-out 11:00 a.m. You will be staying at Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. Signing a Waiver of Liability/Hold Harmless Agreement is required in order to participate in the program. This form is mailed with the welcome materials and is to be mailed back to the university before the program start of the program.
  Parking availability:
Valet parking, at participants' expense is available at $14 per day. In/out privileges with unlimited vehicle access included.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Savannah, Georgia
  Nearest city or town:  Tybee Island Georgia
  Nearest highway: Interstate 95
  Nearest airport:  Savannah International Airport
  From End of Program
  Location: Savannah, Georgia
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

Savannah Historic District

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
KShuttle
phone: 877-243-2050
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$20.00
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

25 - 30 minutes, depending on traffic 

 

Distance:

 

Approximately 18 miles

   

$30 round trip. Advanced reservations required. This shuttle serves the Historic District and Hilton Head Island only. There is no free public transportation from the Savannah/Hilton Head Int'l Airport. Website: www.kshuttle.com/

 
Driving Directions
  From Interstate I-95 north or south bound: Exit at 99A (I-16 east), follow to the end where it feeds into Montgomery Street. At the first stop light turn right onto Liberty Street. Follow for 5 blocks to the DeSoto Hilton which will be on your right hand side.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Check-in/registration, followed by dinner at the hotel and orientation/meet & greet.
(Thursday, December 12)
   
 Arrive To: Hotel; check-in, 4:00 p.m. Registration, 5:00-6:00 p.m. in hotel lobby.
 Dinner: At hotel, in the meeting room where orientation will take place.
 Evening: Meet & greet your coordinator and fellow Road Scholar participants as well as go over the program schedule at Orientation.
   
Accommodations: Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Moravian Christmas Customs, Historic Savannah Overview, and Theater Performance
(Friday, December 13)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant.
 Morning: Lecture/class by our outstanding professor of History on a group of early Savannah settlers, the Moravians, and their interesting Christmas customs.
 Lunch: At the 17Hundred90 Restaurant - located in an historic inn, dripping with character and folklore.
 Afternoon: Lecture/overview of Savannah history by our expert Historian, during a field trip exploring points of interest the historic district with emphasis on Christmases past. Visit to the historic Green-Meldrim House during the field trip.
 Dinner: At the River House Seafood Restaurant located on the beautiful Savannah Riverfront.
 Evening: Special performance at the Historic Savannah Theater: "A Christmas Tradition," a long-running, popular program featuring holiday music that receives rave reviews year after year.
   
Accommodations: Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Holiday Tour of Homes and a Special Symphony Performance
(Saturday, December 14)

Note: A full day of walking in the Historic District over uneven terrain and encountering several buildings that have no handicapped access. Climbing several flights of stairs will likely be required.



   
 Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant.
 Morning: Visit holiday-decorated, privately owned historic homes opened by their residents, just for this special presentation. The displays will not always be typical "Christmas-themed" decor but instead may reflect the homes' and owners' styles.
 Lunch: Lunch will be at the hotel meeting room, in between the morning and afternoon home tours.
 Afternoon: Continue/finish the Holiday Tour of Homes this afternoon.
 Dinner: Dinner this evening will enjoyed with your fellow participants in the hotel meeting room.
 Evening: A special treat this evening: enjoy a special, rare holiday performance by Savannah's own Symphony Orchestra in the beautiful, awe-inspiring Cathedral of St. John the Baptist.
   
Accommodations: Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Christmases Past at the Davenport House and Free Afternoon and Evening
(Sunday, December 15)

Note: Active morning of walking to and from museum home over uneven terrain.



   
 Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant.
 Morning: Visit the historic Isaiah Davenport House museum for a presentation on historic holiday customs presented by guides in period costume and featuring the house decorated as it would be during a Christmas season of the time period.
 Lunch: On your own. Enjoy a local restaurant not included in the program.
 Afternoon: Free afternoon. You may want to take in the Holiday Tour of Inns today or visit River Street.
 Dinner: On your own. Enjoy a local restaurant not included in the program.
 Evening: Free evening. You may want to stroll the district or take a carriage ride to enjoy all of the outdoor holiday decorations on display.
   
Accommodations: Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 5: Field trips to Old Fort Jackson and Massie Heritage Center in the morning and afternoon. Evening Visit to Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace
(Monday, December 16)

Note: An active day of extensive walking over uneven terrain.



   
 Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant.
 Morning: Visit Old Fort Jackson, one of the oldest brick fortifications along the East Coast, and learn more about the Dec. 1963 surrender of Savannah to Union forces. Experience a cannon-firing demonstration!
 Lunch: Enjoy lunch at a charming local restaurant, The Gryphon, which occupies a former apothecary store.
 Afternoon: Visit Massie Heritage Center, site of Savannah’s first free public school. Enjoy numerous historic and archeological exhibits before taking in (and maybe being a part of) a special "Christmas-themed School Play"!
 Dinner: Dinner at a popular, local restaurant - Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room. A local institution serving up authentic, delicious southern comfort food family-style.
 Evening: Enjoy a special evening visit to the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace, hearing stories about one of Savannah's premier families while having the home "all to ourselves."
   
Accommodations: Hilton Savannah DeSoto Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Special Holiday Music Presentation and Program Wrap-up.
(Tuesday, December 17)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant.
 Morning: Enjoy a Holiday music-themed presentation led by our own talented performer/musician. Program ends after class. Lunch on your own.
 Lunch: Program ends after morning presentation. Lunch on your own.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


A Black Woman's Civil War Memories


Author: Susie King Taylor Weiner


Description: Reissue of a 1902 book by a nurse/teacher/former slave - memoirs of a black woman around the time of the Civil War.



Civil War Savannah


Author: Derek Smith


Description: Glimpse into the lives of the men and women who forever will be associated with Savannah during the War Between the States.



Lady From Savannah: The Life of Juliette Gordon Low


Author: Daisy Gordon Lawrence


Description: Story of the founder of the Girl Scouts and her remarkable family. Available from the Girl Scouts.



Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil


Author: John Berendt


Description: Referred to in Savannah as "The Book"-non-fiction, adult language-account of a local antique dealer, Jim Williams, four(!) trials for the same murder in the 1980's-also a Clint Eastwood movie released in 1997.



Spectres and Other Strange Tales/Savannah


Author: Margaret W. DeBolt


Description: Good dose of regional history and insights into the lives of people living in and around Savannah for decades-and of course-local legends/ghost stories.





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