Metro Parks Tacoma

  • Park Finder
  • Register

Upcoming Fort Nisqually Living History Museum Events

August 11 - August 12

Brigade Encampment

Saturday, August 11 – Sunday, August 12 (11:00am - 5:00pm)

Travel back to 1855 during one of the largest museum events of the year as living historians set up dozens of tents at Fort Nisqually Living History Museum.

The event recreates the bustle and excitement of the historic visit of fur traders to the Fort in 1855. Guests will witness the arrival of the brigade (the convoy that delivered a year’s worth of furs) and spirited contests between trappers and traders – from obstacle course races to cooking contests.

At 11:30 a.m. each day, the fur trade brigade arrives, led by bagpipers and welcomed by a volley of musket fire. The day unfolds with competitions, Punch and Judy puppet shows, fashion shows and musical performances. Visitors can participate in "Engagé for the Day," and meet living historians who demonstrate and teach heritage skills such as rope making, weaving, and woodcarving. For each new skill tried, kids collect beads and receive souvenir contracts from the Hudson’s Bay Company.


New this year is a beard contest, presented in partnership with the Grit City Society of Beards.  Anyone with whiskers can enter one of the three categories: trapper, laborer or gentleman. Kids are invited to create beards from craft materials and enter in the competition. Winners will be presented with prizes made by the Fort’s blacksmith. Registration for the contest closes at 3 p.m. on August 11. Judging begins at 3:30 p.m.

On August 12, Fort Nisqually will welcome the Ohana Pacific Foundation for a special performance of music and dance celebrating the many contributions of Hawaiians to the Hudson’s Bay Company and Fort Nisqually. “We know that a group of Hawaiian employees danced for the gathering in 1855,” said event coordinator Allison Campbell. “It is important to honor the contributions of the diverse groups who made up the Fort Nisqually community in the mid- 19th century.” 

All activities are free with paid admission:

Adult (18-64)             $15
Military/Senior (65+)  $15
Youth (4-17)              $10
Ages 3 & under         Free

 Fort Nisqually Logo

Fort Nisqually Living History Museum
(Inside Point Defiance Park)
5400 N. Pearl St.
Tacoma, WA 98407
(253) 404-3970