On Saturday, February 2, 2013, the Ste. Genevieve King’s Ball will be held at the VFW Hall located at 852 Memorial Drive beginning at 7pm. This French inspired celebration has been held in historic Ste. Genevieve for more than 250 years.
During the 18th century in Upper Louisiana, New France, the French settlers looked forward to the time of the Epiphany or Twelfth Night. This was the time when the King’ s ball or Bal de Roi was traditionally held to close out the Christmas season or Les Temps de Fetes. The Ball was the most formal social event of the year and all the townspeople were invited to attend this celebration of singing, dancing, and feasting.
Just as in years gone by, all are invited to join in the merriment of the 2013 King’s Ball. Ticket prices are $10 for adults and $5 for children and students. Tables for 8-10 persons may be reserved. Guests are welcome to bring a basket of snacks for their enjoyment and there will be a cash bar for refreshments. Everyone is encouraged but not required to dress in French Colonial costumes. The musical group, Cash Rebates, will provide music and instructions in traditional dance. Persons of all ages can participate as this dance is a family affair.
All men present will be treated to piece of La Galette des Rois (King’s Cake) and the lucky man who finds a special charm in his piece will be crowned King of the Ball. The King will select his Queen and together they reign over the Ste. Genevieve festivities throughout the year. Special attendants will also be selected to assist the King and Queen. In recent years, the honorary titles of Le Chevalier or La Dame of Ste. Genevieve have been awarded to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the local community.
Doors to the Ball are opened at 7pm with singing of traditional French songs by Les Petits Chanteurs. Guests may be formally introduced beginning at 7:30pm and the music and dancing will begin at 8pm. All children must be accompanied by an adult. The facility is wheel chair accessible. Proceeds from the Ball will benefit the Ste. Genevieve Museum. For more information or table reservations, call (573) 883-2099 or (573) 883-5850 in the evening or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Image (top): Dance in the Château St. Louis, Quebec (1801). Artist: George Heriot (ca. 1759-1839) Watercolor/pencil Courtesy: National Archives of Canada, Ottawa (Accession No. 1989-472-1)