No one can get tired at looking at the Eastern Shore’s iconic log canoes in summer, and that seemed to be the case this Saturday when Agent 7 filled this photo montage report.
This video is approximately two minutes in length
Over the next couple of days, an important chapter of history is on display in Oxford with the arrival of the Chesapeake Bay Buyboats. Most built in the 1920s, these beautiful boats have been restored with about a dozen of the boats taking their annual tour around the Chesapeake.
They made for a beautiful site once again this week as the sun set over the Tred Avon River.
The 2019 Plein Air Easton Meet the Artists event over the weekend brought several hundred people to the historic Knightly estate on Leeds Creek off the Miles River. Alice Ryan received a warm standing ovation during dinner for hosting the event at her beautiful 81-acre farm and estate.
Guests were invited to arrive a few hours early to wander around the estate and engage with the Plein Air artists who were pressed to complete their work by 7 PM. During the reception and dinner, guests were encouraged to purchase the just completed works and well before the evening concluded, the red “sold” tags were abundant.
This week-long annual event organized by the Avalon Foundation provides a remarkable opportunity to view artists at work and, of course, to enjoy art. But, remember, the message: The best way to ensure the future of Plein Air Easton and the Health of your Arts Community is to buy art!
For more information and a complete schedule for the week: www.pleinaireaston.com
The federally chartered Chesapeake Country Byway begins at its furthermost northerly point in Chesapeake City. A recent journey north from Talbot County took just over an hour to cover the 62 miles.
Most know that Chesapeake City sits on both sides of the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal connected by a rather spectacular bridge.
But, how many know that this 14-mile canal to our north is the third busiest canal in the world. The canal has a rich history beginning in the 17th century when early settlers sought a way to reduce water travel between Philadelphia and Baltimore by some 300 miles. Construction was completed in 1829 thanks to the hard work of some 2,600 laborers who built the structure which is 450 feet wide and 35 feet deep.
Today, all types of watercraft move back and forth between the Chesapeake Bay and Delaware Bay.
Of course, people visit Chesapeake City using all types of watercraft and vehicles!
No matter how one arrives, the area pulses with adventure. Sailing vessels and motor vessels packed the marina as summer was beginning. A group of sailors enjoyed coffee and conversation. No doubt, some were beginning their adventure and some were returning. Whether from Florida or a nearby marina, boaters were enjoying their preparations and the fellowship with other boating enthusiasts.
The area is filled with small inns, shops and restaurants. There were many people strolling the streets on the overcast day. So, even without a boat, just checking in for a weekend would provide a delightful chance to take in the history and the adventure of Chesapeake City and then travel south along the Scenic Byway. This guide can help with your own walking tour.
Cruising season on the waters of the Chesapeake Bay has begun and one of our agents joined owners of Ranger Tugs and Cutwater boats for their 8th annual gathering, this one with an Octoberfest theme. The nearly 40 vessels traveled to the Hyatt River Marsh Marina in Cambridge, Maryland and a few enthusiasts came by land.
The rendezvous launched eight years ago when Ranger Tug owners and avid cruisers John and Tracey Garcia joined forces with our local Ranger Tug / Cutwater yacht broker, Pocket Yacht Company in Grasonville. The enthusiasm of volunteer owners and the commitment of the fine team at Pocket Yacht, make this an annual can’t miss event for many avid boaters.
In addition to good food and good fun, the Ranger Tug and Cutwater manufactures come to the event and spend their days with the owners answering questions and troubleshooting. They made a low key presentation which started with the question, “well, what do you want to know?”
Most of the vessels have state-of-the-art Garmin navigation technology on board. This year, Garmin sent people to the rendezvous where they lead a very well attended discussion about what these amazing boxes can do.
Talbot County had strong representation. Indeed, the best dressed award went to Easton’s own Rich and Alice Merrill who have been to multiple rendezvouses in their Ranger Tug, Bay Ranger.
These vessels are built in Washington State for open ocean cruising, so a June nor’easter didn’t deter the group from having an enjoyable Saturday night dinner before setting off in 15 to 30 knot winds on Sunday….well, reportedly, some took advantage of a deal to stay one more night and leave Monday morning with calmer winds.
Just goes to show that our boats provide a common denominator bringing a widely diverse group together for just plain fun, which is why the group is now calling this the “best Wurst rendezvous ever!”
Links for more information.
The southernmost place on the Chesapeake Country Scenic Byways map is Crisfield, Maryland [insert Maryland state Scenic Byways website. A visit from Easton takes you 87 miles along the Scenic Byway and there are a number of interesting stops along the way. On this day, direct to Crisfield was the plan with a few decades having passed since the last visit.
One is immediately struck by the contrasts. Fast food places with long established seafood diners along the route…no longer the train track, but highway 413 about as straight as the rail. The route ending at the decades-old pier with a skyline that now shows condominiums next to the fresh seafood delivery trucks.
A fascinating history has not made the struggle in the present any easier. However, a determined community offers its visitor a number of enjoyable sites, tours, meals and activities.
Located on Tangier Sound, Crisfield was originally a small fishing village, Annemessex Neck. As Europeans colonized the area, it was renamed Somers Cove. The active fishing village grew and reportedly, in 1804 there were over 100 buildings in the area, making it one of the largest places on the Delmarva Peninsula. The growth continued as the town became known as Crisfield for the man who decided to bring the Pennsylvania Railroad to the fishing village in 1866. The fishing village grew to become known as the “Seafood Capital of the World.”
Crisfield would grow to about 25,000 people in 1904 making it the second largest city in Maryland after Baltimore. And, seafood from Crisfield was being shipped throughout the country.
Decades later, as the health of the Chesapeake Bay declined, the way of life for the watermen became more difficult. Then, in 1976 the railroad shut down.
Today, with not quite 3,000 residents, Crisfield remains a tourist location and jump off point to Smith Island and Tangier Island. There are seafood restaurants and beautiful camping areas and of course an historic marina. There is even an airstrip for the adventuresome pilots.
TripAdvisor provides interesting options for visitors to consider
This southernmost point of Chesapeake Country delivers on its promise as scenic, especially when viewed through the lens of its rich history.
If you take no other intentional tour along the Chesapeake Country Scenic Byways, find time for a visit to The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge just south of Cambridge. Less than 30 miles fr
om the center of Easton, the visit offers an experience not easily matched. In fact, the refuge has been referred to as the “Everglades of the North,” and is called one of the “Last Great Places” by the Nature Conservancy.
Before being declared a wildlife refuge, the marshland along the Blackwater River was managed as a fur farm. Then, in 1933, The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge was established as a waterfowl sanctuary for birds migrating along the Atlantic Flyway.
While the area is large, visitors can experience the heart of the Refuge by going to the entrance at Wildlife Drive. Click here for the map.
Here is a scene captured one quiet morning near the entrance to Wildlife Drive….just to provide a feeling for the natural beauty of the area…
Along Wildlife Drive, you will see wildlife…sometimes when you least expect it, so go slow! The drive is a four and a half mile paved road that winds along freshwater ponds, through woods, past fields, and adjacent to marshes. You enjoy it best by pulling off and just watching the wildlife.
On one recent cold morning, a Blue Heron stood still for more than one photographer…
One of the most remarkable sites involves the American bald eagles. Blackwater is home to the largest breeding population of American bald eagles on the East Coast, north of Florida. And, they are sited frequently while just driving through the Refuge.
Of course, there are numerous areas to hike and get off the road for even better looks at the waterfowl and wildlife. If you visit once, you will most likely come back throughout the year for brand new experiences.
For more information, click here for the Blackwater brochure: