Civil War Ends at Parker Press Park

Civil War Encampment - Parker Press Park

After 34 years — the last 20 of which have been sponsored by the Robert E. Lee Civil War Round Table of Central New Jersey — the Parker Press Civil War Living History Weekend is ending. The decision to discontinue the event is due to a number of factors, chief among which are: a significantly changed liability-insurance landscape in which it is exceedingly harder to obtain an affordable policy, and a reenactor population that is aging and dwindling, making it difficult to secure adequate numbers of “troops” for each side. There are also New Jersey’s ever-more-restrictive gun laws that make no exception or exemption for reenactors at legitimate reenactments and living histories held in the state.

The Parker Press Planning Committee (Karen Kulaga, Gary Drake, Mira Form, Bruce Form, Mike Lawrence, Judi Cox, Paul Serge and I) would like to thank Woodbridge Township Mayor John McCormac and his administration for all the help and support that has been given us through the years in our attempt to make history come alive. In addition, many township departments have been involved, and have given us much assistance through the years as well, including Recreation & Resident Services, Parks, Public Works and the Woodbridge Police and Fire Departments.

We would like to express our appreciation to all the reenactors who have participated through the years, and to the members of the Robert E. Lee Civil War Round Table who volunteered their time and energy to make the Civil War Living History Weekend function smoothly. Thanks also to the many merchants and private citizens in Woodbridge and surrounding communities who permitted us to place flyers and signs at their businesses and on their properties to advertise the event.

Finally, we’d like to thank all of you who came to the Parker Press Civil War Weekend through the years. We hope you enjoyed your “time travel” back to 1861-1865. We are very proud that in the entire 34 years of the event, we never charged a registration fee to reenactors, nor an admission fee to visitors. We thank those of you who aided us by contributing to our donation box.

The decision to end the event was not made easily. While it saddens us to bid the event farewell, we must remember that, in time, all things must pass.

If you are interested in learning more about the Civil War, we invite you to join the Robert E. Lee Civil War Round Table of Central New Jersey, located in Woodbridge. For information, the website is: releecivilwarroundtableofcentralnj.com, or visit on Facebook, at RobertELeeCivilWarRoundTable.

 Again, thank you all for your support.

Phil Kohn, Chairman
Parker Press Civil War Living History Weekend Planning Committee
Robert E. Lee Civil War Round Table of Central New Jersey