California State Parks and the California State Historic Governor’s Mansion Foundation are pleased to announce a special “Light Up the Night” evening event on Monday, Nov. 4, from 6-8 p.m. at the Governor’s Mansion State Historic Park (SHP).
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The special event is designed to celebrate the completion of the third floor restoration project, the installation of a state-of-the-art outdoor lighting system and a new environmentally-friendly irrigation system for the mansion gardens. As an event highlight, honored guest Governor Jerry Brown will officially light up the night by activating the eye-catching new lighting system once darkness falls.
Working through the Sacramento Historic Sites Association, a State Parks Cooperating Association, a devoted group of Governor’s Mansion docents worked diligently for the past 30 years to raise the needed $100,000 in funds to restore the mansion’s third floor for public viewing.
As background, a piece of the original crown molding was uncovered a number of years ago that revealed the original paint colors. That discovery, in turn, spurred a renovation effort to re-create the third floor to its original 1877 splendor. After careful analysis and research, a dedicated team of experts has worked for more than a year to re-plaster the walls, re-create the original paint finishes, re-finish the decorative hard-wood floors in the billiard room and the ballroom, and had Victorian carpet custom made for stairs, hallway and sitting parlor.
Coinciding with the completion of the third floor restoration of the Governor’s Mansion SHP are two major donations to the exterior of the mansion as well: the installation of an outdoor lighting system with 110 LED lights that can be individually controlled to light up the mansion, carriage house and the grounds that was provided by the Sacramento Chapter Association of Outdoor Lighting Professionals (AOLP); and an environmentally friendly, low-flow irrigation system donated by a number of local companies.
Donations of these two outdoor improvements total approximately $100,000 in materials and labor. The new exterior lighting will illuminate the grounds and also provide an entirely new street presence for the prized Governor’s Mansion SHP and the upgraded irrigation system will improve the landscaping while also conserving precious natural resources.
The idea to provide lighting for the exterior of the mansion came from Michael Sestak, of Sestak Lighting Design. Sestak was at the mansion for a special event and thought the majestic house needed to be lit so everyone could appreciate the wonderful architecture and design at night. He, along with Andy Thomas of Viewpoint Lighting, Scott Sissom of Elegant Outdoor Lighting and the members of the Sacramento Chapter of AOLP helped make the elaborate project happen.
“This celebratory event is significant in scope because it demonstrates what can be accomplished when State Parks, the foundation, involved docents and community-minded private entities have a vision and work collaboratively to make it happen,” said G. Albert Howenstein Jr., chairman of the California State Historic Governor’s Mansion Foundation. “These exciting high-profile projects will help to raise the stature of this magnificent mansion and further interpret California history for generations to come.”
Tickets to the “Light Up the Night” outdoor reception and cocktail party are $75 per person and include wine, tasty appetizers from Coyote Tap House, Lucca Restaurant and Bar, Oshimi Sushi, Restaurant Thir13een and Seasons 52, live music and the opportunity for guests to tour the newly restored third floor before it opens to the public.