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As I See It- Heritage Days

June 16, 2012 Green Blog No Comments

Naomi Bloch

 

 

 

 

 

July 16, 2012

Potomac, Md

My family and I have lived in Montgomery County for nearly 23 years.  It wasn’t until I worked at the Montgomery County Council that I began to learn about all the amazing things going on in this county!

Because I too, at one point, did not know about all that we have to enjoy here in Montgomery County, I’m guessing that some of you may also not be aware of these wonderful local options.  In this week’s blog I want to tell you about one of these exciting events.

Heritage Days is in its 15th year next weekend, Saturday, June 23rd and Sunday, June 24th.  I want to tell you a bit about it so that you might partake in some of the happenings this year.  Even if you are not able to this time around, at least I’ve put it on your radar for next year.

This is a FREE, two-day countywide festival and is the signature event of the Heritage Tourism Alliance of Montgomery County. The festival was created to bring the County’s natural beauty, cultural diversity, and history to the attention of residents and visitors alike.

To get started, Montgomery County has five distinct areas: Bethesda/Glen Echo/Silver Spring, Gaithersburg/Rockville, Brookville/Olney/Sandy Spring, Germantown/Boyds/Damascus/Clarksburg and last, but not least, C&O Canal/Western Montgomery County/Poolesville.

I will touch on just a sampling of a few of the offerings in each of these five regions of the county and if these peak your interest, then you can get more details about these and other events that might be of more interest to you and your family at: www.HeritageMontgomery.org

If you love carousels, live music, arts & crafts, then you will want to check out the fun taking place at Glen Echo Park, 7300 MacArthur Blvd, Glen Echo: www.GlenEchoPark.org.  The festivities begin at 1:00 p.m. and take place on both Saturday June 23rd and Sunday, June 24th.

Right next door to Glen Echo Park is the Clara Barton House, home of the “Angel of the Battlefield” and founder of the American Red Cross.  Check out: www.NPS.gov/clba for further details.

Moving on to the Rockville/Gaithersburg area, probably the best place to visit for a good overview of the county’s Civil War history would be a stop by the Beall-Dawson House and Stonestreet Museum of 19th Century Medicine.  Check out: www.MontgomeryHistory.org for more details.

You can also easily take in the Redbrick Courthouse, 29 Courthouse Square, Rockville, as it is very close to the Beall-Dawson House.  There will be tours of this designated historic building on Saturday, June 23rd only at 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 3:30 p.m.. www.PeerlessRockville.org

Moving over to the Brookville/Olney/Sandy Spring portion of the county, you will want to check out the Oakley Cabin African American Museum & Park, located at 3610 Brookville Road, Olney.  Bring the family and enjoy guided tours, demonstrations of 19th century crafts and live music by Music on the Rise throughout the day. (Saturday only)  www.HistoryintheParks.org

Then, in Sandy Spring at 16501 Norwood Road, you can join “conductors” on guided hikes on a simulated Underground Railroad trail.  This is two-mile trail that winds through fields, woods and across streams to historic Sandy Springs.  Along the way you will learn of true stories of freedom seekers and how they eluded pursuers.  The 90-minute hikes begin at 9:00 a.m., 10:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m., and are appropriate for ages eight and up.  Saturday only.  www.HistoryintheParks.org

If it is closer for you to visit the Germantown/Boyds/Clarksburg/Damascus part of the county, then you and the kids might really enjoy the King Barn Dairy Mooseum, located at 18028 Central Park Circle, Boyds.  Here, family activities include: milking a model cow, visiting with live animals, enjoying a puppet show as well as arts and crafts!  www.Mooseum.com  (Saturday & Sunday)

Also in this sector of the county is the Hyattstown Mill Arts Project, located at 14920 Hyattstown Mill Road, Hyattstown.  Here on both Saturday and Sunday you can view the multi-media art exhibition titled “Invasive” presenting imaginative interpretations of the environmental concerns of invasive species.  Enjoy live music on both days featuring “Shortbread”, “The Trio” and others.  And on Saturday night from 7:30 p.m. to midnight will be the Saturday Night Song Circle!  www.HyattstownMill.org

Finally, in the C&O Canal/Western Montgomery County/Poolesville portion of the county, you might want to cross the Potomac from Whites Ferry (24801 Whites Ferry Road, Poolesville) where J.E.B Stuart’s cavalry crossed in the Civil War.  This ferry crossing is for people (no vehicles) and departs every 20 minutes.  This free activity can be enjoyed both on Saturday and Sunday.

To wind up the day in a relaxed way, head over to the Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard where you can enjoy samples (for a small fee) of these award-winning wines from Montgomery County’s only vineyard/winery.  Take a tour of the fermentation and barrel rooms, (especially nice on a hot day!) and hear all about how this wonderful wine is made.   For more details: www.SMVWinery.com

Well, I have only given you a very small sampling of the many, many free activities taking place all over Montgomery County NEXT weekend in celebration of the 15th Annual Heritage Days Festival.

I do hope that you will be able to take in at least one or two of these wonderful good-for-the-whole-family festival offerings… Again, if not this year, then next year.

Please also consider going to www.HeritageMontgomery.org to learn about the other wonderful projects to bring history alive all year round for the residents of Montgomery County.

Happy Trails!

 

 

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