AN ISLAND TRADITION SINCE 1980
1980: Josephine Ramage and the Interfaith Council of Churches of Grosse Ile launched the first Grosse Ile Boar’s Head Festival. The Islanders theater group were also instrumental in the initial performance that involved more than 200 people. Sacred Heart Catholic Church hosted the original pageant. The script was rented from the Cherry Hill Presbyterian Church.
1982: The second Boar’s Head took place and the “12 Days of Christmas” was added to the pageant. Doug Scott became the musical arranger and composer.
1984: King Winsaslaus was added to the third performance of the Boar’s Head this year.
1986: During this fourth performance of the pageant King Winsaslaus was removed.
1987: The Interfaith Council and Mrs. Ramage decided the production would occur every four years.
1990: The Boar’s Head Festival was performed at Grosse Ile High School. While nothing new was added, a composition was written called, “The Innocents.” This piece would be brought to life in 1994.
1992: Josephine Ramage passes away from leukemia.
1993: Jill Ryan was appointed executive director and producer to success the late Mrs. Ramage.
1994: More than 400 people were involved in this year’s Boar’s Head performance, once again taking place at Grosse Ile High School. “The Innocents” was performed for the first time during this pageant.
1998: The production returns to Sacred Heart Church and “The Annunciation” is added as a new piece.
2002: The pageant is performed again at Sacred Heart Church and “The Prophet, Isaiah” is added to tell the prophecy of the coming of the Christ Child. The size of the production continued to grow, reaching close to 600 participants.
2004: The Grosse Ile Boar’s Head Festival incorporates and becomes a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
2006: The song, “There is No Rose of Such Virtue,” is added to the pageant to tell the story of the young, virtuous maiden Mary, and her destiny of bringing our God to the world in human form, in Jesus, the Rose.
2011: The Queen’s jewelry is designed by Milkins Jewelers of Monroe.
2014: Rev. Ted Aller and Rev. Richard J. Milford both passed away. The support of each reverend was essential in ensuring the success of the festival since its founding.
2015: A new Drama Director is appointed, Krista Ewbank. The festival celebrated its 35th Anniversary.
2018: The Boar’s Head Festival celebrated its 35th Anniversary Year, which took place in 2015, during the 2018 pageant.