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George Washington re-enactor gets 2nd term

John Godzieba will serve another three years for the annual Dec. 25th re-enactment of the crossing of the Delaware River and other events.

George Washington re-enactor gets 2nd term

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John Gozdzieba (left) will portray Gen George Washington for another three-year term. (Friends of Washington Crossing Park)

John Godzieba will seve a second term as Gen. George Washington at the annual Dec. 25 reenactment of the colonial army's crossing of the Delaware River.

Godzieba, a Bristol Township police lieutenant, was named today to continue portraying Washington at the reenactment and other events offered by the Friends of Washington Crossing Park. He was chosen from 14 candidates, with 10 finalists auditioning for the volunteer job. 

Here is the announcement from the Friends and the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission:

Come to Washington Crossing Historic Park on Saturday, October 27, 2012 from 10:00- 11:00 AM to meet the winner of the competition to portray General George Washington at our annual re-enactment of the famous December 25th Crossing of the Delaware River.  John Godzieba, a police Lieutenant in Bristol Township, will serve as Washington Crossing Historic Park’s official George Washington for a period of three years as he re-enacts the General on Christmas Day, at our annual Dress Rehearsal and many other programs and events.  C. Samuel Davis, a teacher at Trenton Central High School, will serve as an understudy to fill the role of the General when Mr. Godzieba is unavailable.

 To participate in the contest, each applicant submitted a one page letter stating why he should be selected to portray General Washington, a resume of his re-enactor or other acting experience, and a 4x6 full length color photograph in his George Washington uniform. Out of a field of 14 candidates, 10 finalists were invited to attend the audition at the David Library of the American Revolution on September 13, 2012.  At the audition, a panel of seven judges used a scale of one to five to rate each participant on his ability to project an accurate image of George Washington through his appearance, demeanor, and speaking ability; his knowledge of the American Revolution and Washington’s role and actions during that conflict; his commitment to carrying out the mission of Washington Crossing Historic Park; and his availability to fulfill that commitment.    Mr. Godzieba earned the highest score, with Mr. Davis coming in as a runner-up.

Washington Crossing Historic Park commemorates the site of General George Washington’s famous Delaware River crossing on Christmas Day 1776. The 500 acre park also includes the Thompson-Neely House, an 18th century farmhouse used as a hospital to care for sick and wounded Continental soldiers, and Bowman’s Hill Tower, which offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.  Recreational areas of the Park are available for picnicking, hiking and wildlife-watching.

Washington Crossing Historic Park is located at the intersection of Rtes. 32 and 532.  Individuals with disabilities who need special assistance or accommodations to participate in this program, or for additional information, please call 215-493-4076.   This event is sponsored by the non-profit Friends of Washington Crossing Park in partnership with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.

To learn more about upcoming events at the Park, follow us on Facebook and Twitter and visit us at www.ushistory.org\washingtoncrossing  

About this blog
Chris Palmer covers Bucks County for the Philadelphia Inquirer. His previous work has appeared in the New York Times and on several Times blogs, including City Room, the Local East Village and SchoolBook (which has since been taken over by WNYC). Contact him at cpalmer@phillynews.com, 610 313 8212 or on Twitter, @cs_palmer.

Ben Finley covers Bucks County for The Philadelphia Inquirer. He previously worked for The Associated Press, FactCheck.org and the Bucks County Courier Times, where he won more than a dozen journalism awards from organizations including the Education Writers Association, the Society for Features Journalism and the Pennsylvania Bar Association. He grew up in Columbus, Ohio and graduated with honors from The Ohio State University with a degree in journalism. Contact him at bfinley@phillynews.com, 610-313-8118 or on Twitter, @Ben_Finley.

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