(For those unfamiliar: I am LDS/Mormon and my church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, was started in Palmyra, NY. I say "started," but really I believe it was actually restored to modern times as it was in ancient times, rather than started anew. The boy (Joseph Smith) who instigated this restoration was 14 years old when he prayed to know which church to join. This bit of history is interesting because Palmyra, at the time, was in a religious revival. There was a crossroads with 4 different churches on each corner - it's still there, though now it is an intersection. There were travelling preachers coming through the area to convert people to their church. Joseph Smith's own family had some going to one church and some to another; it makes sense that a boy would wonder what to do. I wrote a little more about Palmyra after my first visit almost 5 years ago.
We borrowed Adam's parents' car and drove around Lake Seneca to the Whitmer Farm. It was a beautiful drive past waterfalls, Watkins' Glen, vineyards above the lake, and Mennonite farms.
The Whitmer Farm is where the church was officially organized on April 6th, 1830. This building is a replica.
Inside, they have it set up as it might have been in 1830.
The backyard had an apple orchard and outhouse.
I love this photo. I like the look of the building with dark wood, white mortar and red windows.
There was a visitor's center with several beautiful paintings:
Early believers being baptised:
Receiving the Holy Ghost:
After the Whitmer Farm, we drove with Adam's sister to Palmyra to see some more sites, but were low on time before the Hill Cumorah Pageant would start. Instead, we got ice cream at Chill and Grill.
Elliott and Jane are good cousin-friends:
The Hill Cumorah Pageant was interesting. I liked it, but was overwhelmed at first because you walk through the gates of a grass field and then are overcome by folks in costumes trying to make small talk with you :)
Elliott brought his bike, of course:
There were many opportunities to get pictures with the cast of the pageant. Adam's parents had arrived early and saved us great seats. It was a fun night all together.