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Field Trips

Give your students a first-hand encounter with the past. Our guided tours and programs are aligned with PA Standards and include engaging hands-on interactions that take your students on a journey through the footsteps of history.

Plan your campaign

Use this checklist to help plan your visit.

  • Select some possible dates. April, May, September, and October are high-demand months for group tours so please book early to ensure the date you desire.
  • What are your goals for the visit? Check out our programs and hands-on activities to personalize the experience to meet your students’ needs and interests.
  • Think about how many chaperones you need or want to bring. Fort Ligonier provides one free chaperone admission for every ten students. Additional adults are $8 per person.
  • Do you want your students to visit our museum store? This can be scheduled into your tour. We have souvenirs starting at $.50 and up, including books and resources for adults and children, Fort Ligonier t-shirts and hats and a collection of 18th-century toys and games.
  • Contact our education department at mmanges@fortligonier.org or 724-235-9701 to schedule a day and time.
  • A month before your scheduled visit, watch your email for a confirmation packet that includes a schedule, important visit information, and pre/post visit historical content you can use to prepare students for your visit.
  • Payment Options: We accept all forms of payment (cash, credit card, or check). You can pay upon arrival, during your lunch break or some other convenient moment, or if you prefer, you may request to be invoiced after your visit at the time of scheduling.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long do tours last?
A guided tour of the Fort and Museum lasts approximately 2 hours. Most craft activities take 30-45 minutes, so if you have scheduled a craft activity or other program, please allow extra time. We typically provide 30-45 minutes for lunch.
How many students can you accommodate?
We can accommodate more than several hundred students, depending on which tour or program you select. Please call and speak to a member of our Education Department staff for specific information.
Do you have a space to eat lunch?
Yes, we have picnic tables in the fort area, or you may have a picnic lunch in a grassy area, just ask your tour guide or any staff member for a trash bag. If the weather is inclement we will provide an indoor space to eat.
Where are the restrooms located?
Restrooms are located in the museum, Center for History Education, as well as in the fort area. If you would like your students to use the restroom upon arrival, just let our staff know and we can accommodate this request prior to the admission process.
What if our group is late?
Don’t panic. If you are able, give us a call and let us know so we can adjust the schedule. Our staff is very flexible and will adapt the schedule to make it all work, however, sometimes this requires a shortening of a station or combining groups. Please know we will do our best to make it a fabulous experience within your time frame.
Do the tours and activities meet PA Education Standards?
Yes, and not just in history. We are a multidisciplinary site! All of our tours and programs are aligned to the PA State Standards. A complete list is available in our Education Department brochure or upon request. Please direct your request to Mary Manges at 724-238-9701 or education@fortligonier.org.
Where can we keep lunches and other items brought on the trip?
Lunches can be placed in coolers or boxes on our porch area. For the safety of all students, backpacks are required to remain on the bus or in a vehicle. Teachers and school nurses are permitted to carry a bag.
Do you have food and drinks available for purchase?
Fort Ligonier currently does not sell any beverages or snacks. Old-fashioned candy is available for sale in our museum store. The water fountain located in the Center for History Education also serves as a filling station for water bottles. A Get Go Convenience Store is located directly across the street from the museum entrance.

Field Trip Options

Guided Tour

Guided tours are led by education department docents and begin in either the fort or museum galleries. Docents share information, ask questions, tell stories, and lead students in historical analysis, critical thinking, and interpretation.

Cost: $8 per student


Chaperone-Guided Tour

This is a self-guided experience in which the group chaperones are responsible for leading and managing their group throughout the fort and museum galleries.

Cost: $6 per student


History à la carte? Or Build Your Own Visit?

Start with a guided tour and build your own experience by selecting from one (or more) of the hands-on history options. With every 10 paying student visitors, 1 complimentary adult ticket will be issued. Additional adults over the allotted complimentary tickets will be charged $8.00 per person.

Cost: Listed activity costs are per student and additional to your tour fee.

Description
Cost
Grades
1. Light as a Feather
Experience writing as people did in the 18th century. Students will learn techniques for writing with a quill pen and ink. We’re sure your students will enjoy this challenging and fun activity.
$2.00
3-12
2. Candle Dipping
In the absence of electricity people in the 18th century relied on candles as a source of light. Students will be transported back in time as they make their own candle.
$2.00
K-12
3. Fashion at the Fort
During this interactive experience, students will discover clothing and every day objects from the 18th century.
$1.00
K-5
4. Corn Grinding
In the 18th century food was not instant or always easily prepared. Students participating in this hands-on activity will experience the daily grind of making cornmeal the Native American way.
$1.00
2-12
5. Colonial Costume Tour
Step back in time and experience life in a colonial fort. Students will tour the fort in 18th century clothing and learn about the different roles of people stationed here.
$1.00
K-6
6. Design and Build a Fort
Learn how STEaM and history collide in this fun and interactive actiity. After learning about construction and defense, students will apply their knowledge as they build a fortification of their own.
$1.00
K-12
7. Scavenger Hunt
Students will study people, artifacts, and exhibits in our museum galleries in an attempt to complete the quest and find the hidden object.
$1.00
6-12
8. Be an 18th Century Tinsmith
Tap, tap, tap. Become an 18th century tinsmith and create your own tin punched trt pan using the tools and techniques of the trade. Learn about the various items made by the tinsmith.
$2.00
4-12
9. Mock Archaeology Dig
Students become archeologists as participate in a mock archeology dig and work in small teams to dig, wash, label, and analyze items found. Critical thinking caps required!
$2.00
4-12
10. Marching & Drilling
Students become a part of the action as they drill like an 18th century soldier. Participants will carry a toy musket as they learn the skills needed to be a soldier in the French & Indian War.
$1.00
2-6
11. Artifact Find
Students will explore and handle artifact replicas while learning about their use in the 1700s; followed by the opportunity to match an artifact replica to an artifact on exhibit and engage with the artifact through drawing and writing.
$1.00
2-12
12. White Glove Experience
What is it like to touch a 250 year old artifact? Find out during this hands on experience! Students will put on the white “curator” gloves as they handle, study, and analyze actual artifacts from the 18th century.
$1.00
3-12
Native American Crafts
Why did Native Americans wear jewelry?
What was it made out of?
What is wampum and how was it used?
Learn about the culture of the Eastern Woodland Indians by viewing our original Native American necklaces on exhibit and then creating your own Native American item. As students create their own item they will learn about the materials used and the purpose for the items.Crafts vary in level of difficulty and are arranged by suggested grade level. Each craft activity requires about 30 minutes to complete.
13. Large Bead Necklace
$2.00
K/1
14. Small Bead Necklace
$1.00
2-3
15. Large Bead Double Strand Necklace
$2.00
3-4
16. Native American Pinch Pot
$2.00
K-12

STEAM-Based Programs

Military Science Program

This program is an in-depth cross-curricular program featuring art, language arts, math, science and engineering behind the military campaign of Fort Ligonier. Students will participate in hands-on, minds-on tours of the site. See below for grade band activity specifics:

Cost: $10 per student

Grades 4-5
Grades 6-7
Grades 8 and up
  • Guided Tour of Fort
  • Guided Tour of Museum
  • Fort Construction and Defense
  • Native Americans and the French & Indian War
  • Guided Tour of Fort
  • Guided Tour of Museum
  • Fort Construction and Defense
  • Artillery
  • Guided Tour of Fort
  • Guided Tour of Museum
  • Fort Construction and Defense
  • Artillery and Military Operations

STEAM Behind the History

Fort Ligonier is steeped in history, but history is not an isolated subject. There is a plethora of science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics behind the history of building a fortress and engaging in a military campaign. During this guided experience students will explore the many ways STEAM played a role in history. Students will learn about technology of the 18th century, medical practices and the firing of weapons.

Cost: $10 per student


Cannon Battery Tour

Nothing says STEAM like the firing of artillery! This program includes a guided tours of the fort and museum galleries and a special presentation in the West Cannon Battery where students will learn about the science of firing artillery. They will see sublimation in action and learn what really makes a cannon go boom! Mortar firing included (weather permitting).

Cost: $9 per student


Reserve your group experience by calling 724-238-9701 or emailing our Education Department at: mmanges@fortligonier.org.