I like to try to see the Christmas setup at a local museum or garden each year. For 2014, I decided to check out Mount Vernon. I was joined by Mike, Stephanie, Maggie, and their husbands Mat and Doug. The two main attractions were Aladdin, the “Christmas Camel,” and getting to see the third floor of the house (which is only open in December).
The camel needs some explanation. Apparently George Washington was interested in exotic animals, and one year he paid for a camel to be brought to Mount Vernon during the Christmas season. The house museum has continued this tradition, bringing Aladdin from a local Virginia farm to the grounds each December, going on about six or seven years now. The modern Aladdin is very friendly, as his job the rest of the year is to inhabit a petting zoo.
As for the third floor of the house, it was interesting to get up under the cupola for once. This floor has the bedroom to which Martha Washington moved after George passed away. The space is small, but there are a couple bedrooms and storage rooms up there. Even though the house was less busy than in the summer months, we still couldn’t linger much. But it was better than the crush that is the norm.
Photos below. Pictures are not allowed inside the house, but we took pictures of the grounds and period farm recreations.