i visited Bedford Village on June 26, 2011. I was driving through Bedford on my way home to Northern VA. I had gone by this village many times and decided to stop in. I was a little disappointed. It is comprised of log or wooden structures and is supposed to represent a 18th or early 19th century frontier town. I agree with another reviewer on this site; the village is tired and worn looking and needs some major upgrading. It does not seem that well kept up. Additional historical displays and more information about each structure would have added interest. At the end of the village, there is a Victorian house and another home that looks like it is from the later 19th century or early 20th century. They just don't fit in. The structures are supposed to represent the kind of shops and homes you would see in a western Pennsylvania frontier town, such as private residences, church, school, tavern, country store, bakery, tannery, tinsmith, pharmacy, gun and rifle shop, etc. Some of the structures have docents, others do not. Not all structures have dates on them, so you do not know if they are original or not, where they came from or the history of the families who lived in them. Some have been built specifically for the village so many have been made to look old but are really not.
Docents are dressed in 18th century clothing. The docent at one of the private residences was very friendly and helpful and talked in detail about her 18th century home to me. I asked her about the village since I had never been there before. She said that some of the structures were rescued from destruction and came from the surrounding Bedford area. However, others were built specifically for the village. I believe she said the village was about 30 years old. The young ladies at the bakery were very friendly and they sell terrific sugar cookies! The lady at the country store was pleasant too. There was a lady spinning wool at one of the residences and she was informative about the making of clothing. Some structures were unoccupied so there is not much to tell you about them except by noting the kinds of items that are housed inside. Other docents in the buildings seemed indifferent or don't talk to you at all. Some of them looked bored. They looked as tired and worn as this village! There is a lot of walking involved, so wear good walking shoes and go in good weather!
Reinactments are held during the year and other activities for kids but some do not fit the time period of the village; perhaps they have to do this to keep the village solvent. When I was there, a Wild West show was scheduled for that weekend, but I missed that; most activities were earlier in the day and I arrived in late afternoon. They do have French and Indian War reinactments which would be more in period with the structures. Kids might enjoy the village more than adults; it would give them an idea of what frontier life was like, especially to see the different kinds of trades practiced in the shops. Some structures such as the school in the round and the 18th century private residence were interesting, but I found the entire complex tired and worn looking and one needed more information about each structure to make it a real learning experience. I also would have liked to have seen all original structures on the site, not just a few old builings and the rest newly built (but built to look old). This would have made the village more authentic. The visitor's center could have housed some historical displays about frontier life and perhaps a history time line of Bedford or the western Pennsylvania area would have been a good educational tool.
There is also a very small gift shop on the grounds. The items were OK, but they could have had a much larger inventory. They were offering stagecoach rides when I was there and there were a few people riding horses about, so you have to watch where you walk!
I certainly do not think this place is worth the $10 admission for adults. There are probably other living history villages that are more interesting, educational and informative, and I guess part of my disappointment is that I would really would rather see buildings in their original location and not moved to an artificial setting but I realize that some of these buildings were rescued from destruction so perhaps putting them in a village such as this is the only way they could be preserved. I would say if you are in the Bedford area and want to spend a couple of hours on a pleasant afternoon, especially if there is a special event going on, such as a reinactment, you might make a visit, but I would not go out of my way to see this attraction.
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