My dear Jane Austen Friends,

We named this year’s Fest, the Gift of Jane Austen. And so, we offer YOU this gift - Our third annual Jane Austen Fest here in Mount Dora.

It’s a wonderful gift - this 18th century woman who wrote only 6 novels in her lifetime but has stood the test of time, whose works have been relevant for movies, plays and reading in the 21st Century, who is known the world over as the number one writer on many lists, has inspired many writers to research her life and written many thesis and hundreds of books about her, and is only a mere 247 years old this month! - having been born December 16 1775.

And at this season of gift giving, we present our gift to you. Or, perhaps you would like to offer the Fest as a gift to one of your friends or relatives during this holiday season. Last year’s Fest found this true…a father had given the Fest as a gift to his daughter … and a young man and woman came as a gift to each other.

This gift is available on our website REGISTRATION.

So, at this time of year we want to wish you all Happy Gift Giving (and receiving) and Happy Holidays to you all!


Margaret Jane Andersen

Jane Austen Fest

P.S.  See you at the Fest in February!

As I think of the many gifts that Jane Austen has given me, which of course, includes her novels and characters, the whole culture of the Regency Era, the Regency attire, etc., but the one that stands out most to me is the friendships that I have developed around Jane. One of my very best friends I met through our interest in Jane Austen. Very few of our conversations do not have a mention of Jane, the Regency era or the latest regency dress we’ve seen on line. So, as I said in our first Jane Austen Fest, this is a place to make new friends and renew friendships of old.

We have been working diligently these past months trying to make this the best Fest yet. Our speakers are centered around Regency fashion and attire. You don’t have to come in costume but most do. Where else can you go for a weekend and live a fantasy life for 2 1/2 days than the Jane Austen Fest?  As we say “A Foot in the 21st Century and a Toe in the Regency Era”.

My Dear Janeite Friends,

When we chose the quote above to build our 2nd Fest around, little did I know at the time it was chosen specifically for me.

As most of you know, my boyfriend had a major heart attack early Wednesday morning before the Fest. On Thursday, the open heart surgery proceeded with a triple by-pass and a new valve. And by the way, his heart stopped twice during this time…death certainly was knocking on his door. Recovery is slow but 2 months later he is on the mend and getting better each day.

I want to thank you all for your kind words, thoughts, and prayers. I remained calm during this time and remained mistress of myself, at least my friends said so.

Changes are a comin’…

We want to announce our new Board; Margaret Andersen, President, Nancy Hurlbert, Treasurer, Betsy Arvelo Buzbee, Director, Shareen Groce, Director, and Dallas Smith, Director, as we form our own 501c3 (non-profit) organization. Here-to-fore we have been a sub-trust under The Mount Dora Community Trust, whom we thank profusely for their guidance and support to help us get started.


The first Jane Austen Fest Scholarship was awarded to Jessey Dickens who is a student at Lake Sumpter State College.  She was selected by the Scholarship Committee from several submissions for the scholarship.
From left to right…Scholarship Committee…Connie Brough, Margaret Andersen, Jessey Dickens (recipient), Cathy Lundy, Scholarship Chair