During the first three weekends in December, the community got into the holiday spirit at the Hummingbird Inn in Easton for the 2nd annual Home for the Holidays winter festival. This year’s event raised nearly $10,000 to benefit Talbot Interfaith Shelter’s S4 Program (Shelter, Stability, Support, Success), which guides local families and individuals from homelessness to self-sufficiency.
Attendees were mesmerized by the magical lighting display on the grounds of the Hummingbird Inn, designed and installed in partnership with On Your Mark Lighting and Design. They enjoyed live musical performances each night from local musicians: The Allegra Women’s Choir, DJ Charles Thomas, The Julie Mack Jazz Duo, Tom Gerni and Natural Law, Ellie Rose and Makayla Faulkner, Edgemere, Easton Elementary Chorus, The Praisefest Chorale, Emma Bailey, and Jayme D. Santa was “in the house” every evening, thanks to Ken Gresch and Greg Wilson, and Santa’s helper elf Caitlin Lankford joined him during the final weekend.
A plethora of sweet treats were provided by Eat Sprout, Blue Heron Catering, Kate’s Cookies, Lori Cuthbert, and Talbot Interfaith Shelter’s (TIS) own Director of Operations, Fran Doran. Kids had lots of fun at the craft table, making their own ornaments to take home. On Sunday, December 12th and December 19th, Tanglao Carriage Tours provided carriage rides through town, sponsored by Easton Economic Development Corp.
Shelter supporters sponsored the Walk of Lights, a luminary path stretching from the Hummingbird Inn on Aurora Street down Dover and Goldsborough Streets and leading into downtown Easton. Some 400 luminaries lit the path for the first two weekends, until some unexpected rain damaged most of the displays.
This year, the whole town got in on the fun with the Downtown Easton Decorating Contest, in which nineteen downtown businesses and five homes competed for the community’s votes to determine who had the best holiday decorations. The business participants were: Deco Stephy, Storm & Daughters Ice Cream, Prim Salon and Boutique, Marc Randall & Co, Vintage Books, Shearer the Jeweler, A Happy Place, Dwelling & Design, Curlicue, Dragonfly Boutique, EC and Company and Elizabeth Claire Salon, Sailor, Lizzy Dee, Levity of Easton, An Optical Galleria, Trade Whims, La De Da, Justamere Trading Post, and Berrier Ltd. The residential contestants were 107, 109, 111, and 118 Goldsborough Street and 9 N Aurora Street. Vintage Books won the business contest, while 111 Goldsborough Street took home the prize for the residential contest. Each received a $100 Downtown Easton Gift Card and dinner for two at Hunter’s Tavern.
“We are delighted by the results from this year’s event,” says TIS Executive Director Julie Lowe. “It was wonderful to see so many smiling faces, and gratifying to know that we were able to raise $10,000 to help the families and individuals we serve to move out of homelessness and reclaim their independence. We are grateful to all of the donors, sponsors, musicians, and of course, our incredible volunteers, without whom we could not have pulled off this marathon event!”
Talbot Interfaith Shelter (TIS) is a homeless shelter and transitional housing program based in Easton, MD and serving the five counties of the Mid-Shore (Talbot, Caroline, Kent, Queen Anne, and Dorchester). Families and individuals staying with TIS are required to participate in their S4 Program (Shelter, Stability, Support, Success). S4 guides guests step-by-step from homelessness to self-sufficiency by providing shelter, case management, connection to local service providers, and educational programming. When guests are ready, they are invited to move into one of TIS’ off-site transitional apartments. TIS partially subsidizes their rent, and they continue to receive rigorous case management and participate in classes as they work gradually towards taking over their full expenses over the course of approximately two years.
To learn more about Talbot Interfaith Shelter and how you can help, visit talbotinterfaithshelter.org or contact Julie Lowe at [email protected] or 410-310-2316.