Saturday Lectures

Informative programs 45 minutes on tea included in your ticket price.

Seating hall limited to 50, First come, first served seating.

9:30 AM

Understanding the Health Benefits of Tea

This informative session will examine some of the statements made regarding the health benefits of tea. Although some claims make tea sound like a miracle drug, guest presenter Babette Donaldson, author of The Everything Healthy Tea Book, will address the beneficial aspects found in a soothing cup of tea. Understanding how tea interacts on a cellular level in our bodies explains the real magic of 'true tea', Camellia sinensis. This general overview will cover many of the most frequently asked questions like, "What is the healthiest tea?" and "Does green tea help you lose weight?". Babette Donaldson hails from Nevada City, CA, and is the founder of the International Tea Sippers Society and creator of the Sip for Peace initiative.

10:30 AM

"Porcelain's Perilous Past: Passion, Prisoners, Pots, and Paints"

How the Secret of Making Porcelain Came to Europe--Prisoners, Poisons, and Spies. At the beginning of the 18th C., Europeans prized the beautiful porcelain of China--figurines, vases, teaware--but could not figure out how to make it themselves. Enter Augustus the Strong, King of Poland and Elector of Saxony. He was hunting for someone to turn base metal into gold, but instead found someone who discovered how to make porcelain. Workers were held captive, they were exposed to dangerous fumes, and they tried to sell the secrets. For decades, Meissen and Dresden remained the center for producing fine porcelain until the secret spread to France and other places in Europe. Learn why porcelain teaware is prized above earthenware and other types of ceramic products. We are pleased to welcome Peggy Hedden from Columbus, OH to share the history of porcelain. Peggy has been a fan of tea and tea things for over forty years--sipping, reading, and hostessing.

11:30 AM

The Bold, The Daring and The Intrepid Scotsmen

With images like Braveheart, Loch Ness, bagpipes and kilts, Scotland occupies a mythic place in the minds of many. But few realize the important role that Scotland played in the world of tea. Two hundred years ago, all tea came from China, and its cultivation and preparation were a jealously guarded secret, with violations punishable by death. This session will explain how various Scotsmen broke that monopoly, made Britain’s – and the worlds – favorite drink and transformed the histories of China, India, Sri Lanka and much of Africa. Some of these men, Sir Thomas Lipton – (you know the one behind that tea brand on every grocery store shelf in the U.S., not to mention in just about every gas station quick stop shop), for example, were innovators, while others spotted opportunities to expand their horizons, but they were all prepared to journey halfway across the world, and their cumulative impact on tea worldwide proved to be staggering. Am bu toigh leat cupa ti? Judi Slack is a passionate tea devotee from Cleveland. Being fascinated with tea her whole life, she put this passion to work; studied hard, sampled lots of tea and received five certificates from the World Tea Academy. Ms. Slack also teaches various tea information classes at her local community college and offers tea related presentations at area libraries. She says the following ancient Chinese proverb best defines her relationship with the world of tea “Better to be deprived of food for three days, than of tea for one.”

12:30 PM

A Spot of RoyalTEA

Today, nothing seems more quintessentially “posh” than a cup of afternoon tea. After all, images of Queen Elizabeth II enjoying a cup have become a cultural touchstone. But it wasn’t always this way. While the practice of drinking tea in Asian cultures dates back several millennia, Westerners wouldn’t embrace it until the mid-17th century. How did tea-drinking solidify into a fashionable and integral part of royal life, and where did it go from there? Royal commentator Amanda Matta, perhaps better known by her TikTok handle @matta_of_fact, will draw back the curtain on the interwoven history of teatime and the royals.

1:30 PM

Introduction to Tea Leaf Reading - The Art of Tasseography

Dip your toe into the enigmatic world of tea leaf reading with tasseographer Rissa Miller and learn how to discover and develop the story that each teacup tells! This entertaining and informative class will introduce you to the world of tea leaf reading beginning with a brief history followed by the basic instructions for beginning a tea leaf reading session. How to handle the tea and teacups will be included, plus delve into how to start seeing and interpreting the symbols revealed by the tea in the cup. Rissa has been practicing tasseography as a teenager when she enjoyed her first cup of loose leaf tea.She is a published author and poetess, and currently works as a food editor. She studied writing at New York University/Tisch School of the Arts and photojournalism at Western Kentucky University. She is currently taking an online course at Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

2:30 PM

Japanese Tea Traditions. The Way of Tea

Sachiko Houck, born in Fukuoka, Japan but currently residing in Lancaster, PA will share her knowledge of the Japanese style of tea. With a strong background in the ‘way of tea’, learning from her mother during her early years, and continuing her studies with Chado Urasenke Tankokai in Philadelphia, (a kyokai or alumni association of the Urasenke international school of tea ceremony), Sachiko will offer a glimpse into Japanese tea traditions. This class will provide an introduction to the cultural aspects of the tea ceremony, which provides a once in a lifetime moment, never to be repeated. The Japanese Tea Ceremony is a lifelong learning process, incorporating the four principals of the tea ceremony; harmony, respect, purity, and tranquility, while essentially creating a moving meditation for the guests and host. Featured in the tea ceremony is Matcha tea, a powdered green tea. The ever growing popularity of Matcha tea has placed a spotlight on the early cultural use of this tea. The unique variety of equipage used in the preparation of ceremonial Matcha will also be discussed.