St. Michaels Museum Opening on May 6

Betty and Gerge Seymour, 2016

St. Michaels Museum will open for its 2017 season on Saturday May 6th.  An official opening reception will be held from 2 to 4 PM and will include information of the events plans for the 2017 season.  This will be followed by guided tours of the Museum led by the Curator, Kate Fones.  There will be an old-time Social with light refreshments and time for neighbors, part time residents and visitors to get together with the Museum Board members.  This event is open to everyone and is free of charge.

The opening exhibit will be on George and Betty Seymour, two St. Michaels’ natives who have contributed so much to St. Michaels’ Museum and Talbot County.  The Museum and St. Michaels are fortunate to have two such talented and dedicated people in our community. This exhibit will be a chance to learn a great deal about St. Michaels and Talbot County.

George, born in St. Michaels, went to public schools in St. Michaels and Baltimore.  He graduated from Western Maryland College (now McDaniel College) in 1950 and earned a masters degree in social work from the University of Pennsylvania in 1952. During his retirement George became fascinated with Frederick Douglass’s early ties to Talbot County especially his three years in St. Michaels (1833-1836) and his post Civil War visits to St. Michaels and Easton.  George researched and created a 2007 Frederick Douglass Walking Tour in St. Michaels under the auspices of the St Michaels Museum. It became a popular fixture for the museum and is still offered by the museum.  George went on to start a campaign in 2008 to have the State Highway Rt. 33 to be dedicated to Frederick Douglass.  The state officially adopted the dedication in October 2009 at the St. Michaels Museum’s fundraiser at Wye House (Frederick Douglass’ Return to Wye House).  At the same time George went on to write the 24 page booklet, A Walk With Frederick Douglass Around St. Michaels that was published in 2009. George paid for the printing and then gave the rights to the booklet and several copies of the booklet to the St. Michaels Museum. The Museum still sells the booklets.

Betty went to St. Michaels’ elementary school in 1938 when it was still on St. Mary’s Square and graduated from St. Michaels High School in 1949. She studied nursing at Easton hospital and graduated there with a nursing degree in 1952.  George and Betty married in 1952 after they received their degrees and worked on the western shore for nineteen years before they were able to move back to their hometown, St. Michaels in 1971.  They continued their careers here, George as a social worker and Betty as an operating room nurse at Memorial Hospital in Easton.

In 1984 Betty began researching her family history.  Betty’s family goes back to the early days of Talbot County.  She is a descendent of the Harrison Family, Blades family, and Morris family of St. Michaels, that intermarried with several local families.  Betty began volunteering for Talbot County Free Library’s Maryland Room in Easton.  During the 1990s she became involved with publishing historical records and became active in the Upper Shore Genealogical Society.  In 1999 she became active at the St. Michaels Museum.  She has served as a board member and curator.  She was a popular walking tour guide for the museum and created a St. Michaels in 1813 walking tour.  Recently she has put together a St. Michael’s Civil War walking tour.

Museum Entrance

During 2017 the existing Frederick Douglass Exhibit “Frederick Douglass – His World 1818-1895” will remain on view in the museum’s hyphen with a few minor changes.

Plans are underway for a summer museum exhibit that will deal with St. Michaels’ Dodson family (privateer William Dodson and his father, Robert A. Dodson, boat builder and packet operator) who were active in defending our town against the British in 1813.  We will also highlight the next generation of Dodson’s, two physicians (Dr. Robert A. Dodson and Dr. C. Marion Dodson) who fought to preserve the union during the Civil War, one in the army and the other in the navy.  We are hoping to have a civil war reenactment group camping on our Museum grounds sometime this summer to complement this exhibit.

Our walking tours will continue on Saturday mornings at 10AM with alternating themes:  “Historic St. Michaels: its People, Places and Happenings” and “Frederick Douglass, a slave, in St. Michaels 1833-1836.”  Special tours for groups will continue to be available for groups at $10 per adult.  There is a minimum of $50 for small group tours) Groups of more than ten can get special rates.  Please call 410-745-0530 for information.

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Enjoys Spring and School

Spring and pollen are in the air!! Enjoy this Talbot Historical Society Laird Wise Collection photo of an Easton Elementary School flower show! Do you recognize any of these adults or students? Tom Hill believes the gentleman to the back right is Mr. Wood, the principal of the Idlewild Elementary School circa 1950!!

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

Talbot Historical Socierty Project Rewind: Moves Off the Tracks

Project Rewind- Talbot County: Oh My!! This photo is of the wreck of the “Baltimore Flyer” at St. Michaels, Md. that occurred August 13, 1918! Wonder how they cleaned that mess up back in the day?? Photo from the H. Robins Hollyday Collection at the Talbot Historical Society.

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

A Talbot Mentors Match—the 100th!

TM Tina De’Angelis and Heidy Lopez-Cruz

2017 is an important year for Talbot Mentors. It is our 20th anniversary. Hundreds of Talbot County children have been matched with mentors in our 20 year history. Today is a special day. Today marks the most mentor/mentee pairs the organization has supported at one time – 100!

The meeting that will formalize a brand-new mentor/mentee match begins with an icebreaker—a way to get the group involved in something other than the sweet nervousness that comes with making new friends. At its core, the relationship between a mentor and a mentee is all about the trust, guidance, and care that characterize deep friendship.

Jazmine and Javana (Talbot Mentors staffers) get up from the table. Following suit are Tina (the new mentor), Heidy (the new second-grade mentee) and her mom and younger brother, and Jeremy (a seasoned mentor who has joined the group as translator). Heidy’s mom, Keilin, is from Central America and is just starting to learn English.

“Let’s play,” says Jazmine. “This is a little game about things that make you happy,” she continues before launching into a series of questions. There are no winners or losers. It is a chance to start to get to know one another.

“Which do you like better, dogs or cats?” Jazmine asks. The dog people are invited to stand on the left side of the room; the cat people, on the right. It’s dogs, unanimously. “Beaches or amusement parks?”  Only Javana opts for beaches. “Pizza or burgers”? All votes go for pizza—no, wait a second, Jeremy has walked to the burger side of the room. Heidy giggles. Before long, the ice is broken and everyone sits back down, still discussing likes. “Dancing” for Tina and Keilin; “playing Legos more than watching TV” for Heidy.

The laughter grows warmer.

“Now can I talk to Heidy?” Tina asks. Her cut-to-the-chase exuberance can be construed as a harbinger of things to come. Heidy will surely benefit from the “let’s get the ball rolling” spirit of a woman who clearly loves children and can’t wait to get started.  But she’s going to have to be patient for 15 minutes more.

“Today is April 3, 2017, says Javana. “It’s an important date—for you and, in a very exciting way, for Talbot Mentors,” she says, making eye contact with everyone seated at the table. “This will be your anniversary date.” Tina and Heidy look at each other.  Javana goes on to explain that mentor, mentee, and mentee’s mom will get together and celebrate in exactly one year. They will take stock on how things have gone for Tina and Heidy; what have they most enjoyed doing? In fact, mentors and mentees usually agree that “just being together” is what matters most. What are their thoughts re year two?

The importance of April 3, 2017, for the organization? “This is the 100th Talbot Mentors match,” Javana offers with a smile that could light darkness. History in the making! Murmurs around the room. This milestone match brings together a woman who grew up in the slums of Sao Paulo, came to the U.S. when she was 14, and went on to be a successful Eastern Shore real estate broker with a reserved seven-year-old child whose eyes flash brightness and whose conversation shuttles easily between Spanish and English. Tina is fluent in Spanish, which will go a long way to keeping Heidy’s mom in the loop.

Exchanged between Tina and Keilin are 3×5 cards with contact information. Logistical glue.

Next comes the match agreement—a one-pager that spells out expectations and commitments. Jazmine reads, “The mentoring relationship is a partnership between the mentee, mentor, mentee’s parent/caregiver, and Talbot Mentors, in a commitment to meet for 1-2 hours a week for a year. We ask that all members commit to working through challenges and agree to responsibilities outlined below.” Jeremy translates.

Communication—among all parties—tops the contract list. Making dates. Keeping dates. Sharing information on Talbot Mentors special events. Reporting pressing challenges. The document and a pen are passed around. Signers are Javana, Heidy, Tina, and Keilin. It is a declaration of interdependence that sets the stage for success.

Everyone’s schedule is tight, but the group quickly lands on a regular Sunday afternoon meeting time for Tina and Heidy. “School’s out June 9,” says Tina. “I hope we can meet more than once a month during the summer.”

Nods of agreement. Applause all around. A journey has begun. Tina and Keilin hug. And then the proud new mentor walks over to Heidy, who, in no time flat, is on Tina’s lap.

Smiles are wide. Horizons too. What a match!

There are many more children in Talbot County that need mentors. We are in immediate need of twenty new mentors. If you are interested in becoming a mentor, or know of somebody who would make a great mentor contact Natalie Costanzo today on natalie@talbotmentors.org or 410 770 5999.

Street Banners by St. Michaels Art League

Despite the challenges of April weather patterns, lineman, Kevin Hauf, hangs artist Joan Cranner’s banner on Talbot Street in St. Michaels.

When the banners fly on Talbot Street, the St. Michaels community re-enters the full swing of summer recreation that brings thousands of tourists to this charming harbor town. From one end of Talbot Street to the other, colorful banners delight visitors with depictions of iconic boating scenes, crabs, local wildlife, and all the summer fun for which St. Michaels is so well known.

This annual event, now in its eighth year, is made possible through the support of many individuals, businesses, and organizations. The artists are members of the St. Michaels Art League. Their original images were on display during the month of April at the St. Michaels branch of the Talbot County Public Library on Fremont Street. The Library has long been a collaborator with the League in sponsoring gallery shows.

Each spring, Curtis Short and his crew expertly hang the colorful banners on Talbot Street utility poles. The Cooperative has been an enthusiastic partner from the inception of the banner program.

The Talbot County Arts Council assists with partial funding for the League’s community oriented events, including the banners, the league’s children’s Art Day, and “Art Hunt” that inspires visitors to tour the sponsoring shops that line the streets.

While the Art League’s mission is to enhance the appreciation of art and members’ artistic professionalism, the city continues to benefit from the economic promotion that a lively arts scene engenders.

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Safe at Home Plate

It’s that baseball time of year again! This Laird Wise photo was taken at the Easton Ball Park sometime in the late 1950’s early 1960’s. Notice the signs around the Easton Ball Park on Federal St., E. S. Adkins & Co., Reads, Royal Crown Cola and what looks like People’s Ice Co.. Any memories of these businesses? Do you remember this ballpark? Do you know what is in this space now?

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra Fund of the Mid-Shore Community Foundation

Jeffrey Parker, MSO Vice President; Buck Duncan, MSCF President; Valerie Mazur, MSO Easton Area Vice President and Julien Benichou, MSO Music Director

The Mid-Shore Community Foundation is pleased to announce the establishment of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra Fund, a designated endowment fund at the Foundation.

The Fund will be administered as an endowment to support and ensure the long-term growth of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra.  Distributions from the Fund will help support music enrichment programs for youth and other needs of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra.  Charitable contributions to the Fund are encouraged and may be directed to the Mid-Shore Community Foundation in support of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra Fund.

Established in 1997 and now celebrating its 20th year, the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra is a 501(c)(3) organization that serves the Mid-Atlantic Region through the performance and educational outreach of classical music.

Under the artistic direction of Maestro Julien Benichou, the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra performs an annual season of concerts throughout the Delmarva area, as well as, two holiday events – The Holiday Joy Concert at the Avalon Theatre and the New Year’s Eve Concert at the Christ Church in Easton.  Performances include a vast repertoire of classical and modern compositions and feature world-class guest soloists, making the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra an integral part of the cultural life in communities where it performs.

Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra is scheduled to perform on April 27, 29 and 30, in Easton, Ocean View and Ocean Pines.  Additional information regarding the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra and its performance schedule is available on its website, www.MidAtlanticSymphony.org.

The Mid-Shore Community Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity that serves both donors and nonprofits in Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot Counties.  Together with its donors, the Foundation makes grants, awards scholarships and leads community efforts to improve the quality of life on the Mid-Shore.  For additional  information, visit www.Mscf.org.

Spy Moments: The Harlem Quartet at Inn at Perry Cabin

It’s a bit hard to remember the last time that a Grammy award winner performed in Talbot County in recent memory. Perhaps the Avalon will quickly remind us of award winners that have come to Easton, but one can only agree that nothing is as exciting and as stimulating as when one hears the extraordinary sound of virtuoso performances so close to home.

And that was the case in St. Michaels last weekend when the Harlem Quartet performed at the Inn at Perry Cabin thanks to Chesapeake Music. While the quartet excels at classical music, they are one of the few that add jazz to the mix of music they offer. In fact, they worked closely with jazz legends Chick Corea and Gary Burton on “Mozart Goes Dancing” which won a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition in February 2013. 

The Spy was there on Saturday night capture a few moments of their stunning performance.

This video is approximately three minutes in length. For more information about Chesapeake Music, please go here 

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Goes to the Lumber Yard

Recognize this Easton, Maryland building? What business is there now? The Nuttle Lumber and Coal Company was founded in Denton in 1930 by three members of the Nuttle family. J. D. Neal and Richard Derrickson bought the operating interests of the Company in 1973. J. D. Neal retired in 2011 and Jamie Neal runs the operation in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. J. D.’s brother Keith runs the home building Nuttle Construction business in Denton, Md. Facts: “myeasternshoremd.com” article by Abby Andrews Dec. 7, 2011. Do you have memories of this company you would like to share?

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

Lip Sync Battle Pays More Than Lip Service to Local Homeless Shelter

On April 13th at 7:30 pm, the Avalon Theatre will be alive with the sounds of music, but the people on stage won’t be singing.  For their second installment of the Concert 4 Shelter series, Talbot Interfaith Shelter (TIS) is hosting a Lip Sync Battle to raise money for their shelter and transitional housing program.  The event is presented by Wells Fargo Advisors’ Easton Branch, and is sure to be a hilarious and fun time for the whole family.

TIS has gathered individuals and teams from all over the community to duke it out in a Lip Sync battle royale for the ages.  The contestants include TIS Executive Director Julie Lowe, Mike Endzel of Johnny Bling, Team Eastern Shore Brewing, Rob Pierce of Pierce Home Builders, Team Shore United Bank, students from The Country School HOHO (Helping Others, Helping Ourselves) Advisory Group, and Team BAAM (Building African American Minds).  These brave souls have been preparing for weeks to perform their hearts out and compete to see who can raise the most money for the shelter.

Adding to the fun will be co-hosts Laurie Forster, also known as The Wine Coach, and local musician and shelter board member Jayme D.  The always entertaining DJ Groundhog will be on stage providing the soundtrack to this unforgettable night.  If you want to support your favorite contestant, there are many ways to “vote”:

Buy a ticket to the show. The night of the event, your ticket will be your ballot, and the $27 purchase price will go towards helping your team-of-choice win. As a bonus, just by purchasing your ticket, you will also be providing a “win” for a man, woman or child in need in our community by covering the cost of shelter, food, and services for one day!
If you’re attending the show, come early and come hungry! The incredible Eat Sprout will be providing light fare, snacks and beverages, and every dollar you spend on food will be counted as a vote for your contestant!
Make an online donation. If you can’t attend the show, or just want to help push your contestant over the edge, you can vote by making an online donation to TIS.

To learn more about the Lip Sync Battle, buy your tickets, or vote for a contestant, visit www.talbotinterfaithshelter.org/LipSyncBattle/html.

The Talbot Interfaith Shelter is a voluntary interfaith-based service organization in Talbot County, Maryland. We are dedicated both to providing safe, temporary shelter to men, women, and children who lack adequate housing, and to raising awareness of the issues of homelessness in our community.