“Growing into Community” at Unitarian Church Sunday

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On Sunday, October 22, at 1-0 AM Rosemary Ramsey will give a sermon on “Growing into Community” for the Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River, 914 Gateway Drive (Crestview), Chestertown. Rebecca Solnit writes of a future that is unknown, dark, with an enveloping sense of possibility and communion. Martin Luther King Jr. considered “agape,” or love in action, as going to any length to restore community and heal that which divides us. Rosemary will share ideas of what building intentional community means to her, and how uncomfortable that can be.
Special music for this service will be performed by Fredy Granillo.
Childcare will be available during the service.
All are welcome to our service. For more information, call 410-778-3440.

Chocolate for Food Day!

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Hugo Chavez Ayala

October 24 is nationally designated as Food Day—a day to examine how to improve our diets, our foods, and food policies—and Washington College this year is taking on a sweet subject: Chocolate. Hugo Chavez Ayala, co-founder of Agrofloresta Mesoamerica, will discuss cacao cultivation and how the choices we make as consumers of chocolate can affect the people, landscape, and cultures of the countries that grow cacao.

The event at 6:30 p.m. in Hynson Lounge is free and open to the public and will be followed by a chocolate tasting.

Ayala will explain the logistics of cacao cultivation and how the agroforestry system where it grows can have positive social and environmental impacts. He will also discuss the difference between mainstream versus artisanal chocolate, and how the consumer choices can make a difference in the producing countries.

Ayala is an agronomist with a master’s degree in sustainable rural development. After working in academia for several years, he launched Agrofloresta to prove the thesis that it was possible to have a sustainable cacao business in Southern Mexico. Currently, Agrofloresta is working on its second cacao season, exporting fine flavor cacao to the U.S. and Europe, and is exploring the sustainable trade of other products, while benefiting more than 200 farmers with better prices and capacity building.

This event is sponsored by the Center for Environment & Society and the Student Environmental Alliance.

 

Love Quilting! At Kent Center, Oct. 28-29

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Geese Among the Lilies is the Olde Kent Quilters Guild 2017 raffle quilt. Based on a pattern by Minick & Simpson, the quilt is a tribute to the beauty of the Chesapeake Bay region. Proceeds benefit the guild’s community outreach programs, Deborah’s Angels and Hands of Time. Tickets for the raffle will be on sale, six for $5 or $1 each, at the guild’s upcoming Shore Love Quilting! Show & Market at the Kent Center.

The Olde Kent Quilters Guild will present their bi-annual Shore Love Quilting! Show & Market on Saturday, October 28, and Sunday, October 29, at the Kent Center, 215 Scheeler Road, Chestertown. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $8, children 12 and under free.

The guild’s members have spent the last two years lovingly and skillfully creating more than 80 quilts that exemplify both the art and the craft of quilting through a variety of styles and techniques, including work by each of the guild’s four “bees” or special interest groups. “We’re really looking forward to having our show at the Kent Center for the first time,” guild president Gail Newman noted. “Its light-filled banquet hall should really show off our quilts beautifully. Plus, there’s plenty of parking!”

Sisters Jean Anthony and Barbara “Bobbi” Pippin are this year’s featured quilters. Among their showcased quilts are several they both worked on as gifts to celebrate various family members’ milestones.

Community outreach is an important part of the guild’s programs throughout the year. Visitors to the show can learn more about both Deborah’s Angels, which has donated more than 2500 small quilts to sick and needy children since its inception in 2004, and Hands of Time, a partnership with the Kent County Detention Center begun in 2016. These programs are supported in large part by the proceeds from the guild’s annual raffle quilt. This year’s quilt, Geese Among the Lilies, is the guild’s interpretation of the Coastal Lilies pattern by Minick & Simpson. Tickets for the raffle will be on sale at the show, six for $5 or $1 each. There are second and third prizes as well, so each ticket has three chances to win. The winners’ names will be drawn at the guild’s final meeting of the year on November 8.

The Market is the perfect opportunity for the show’s visitors to start their holiday shopping, offering unique handcrafted items ranging from lap, throw and baby quilts to zip pouches, purses, table runners, and other small items. Visiting quilters will also find a rich assortment of books, patterns, fabrics and tools for sale.

On Sunday, Bob’s Sharpening Service will be on-site in the parking lot to provide on-the-spot sharpening for scissors, knives and pruners. The Smoke, Rattle & Roll food truck will also be there, offering a variety of delicious barbeque meals.

The Olde Kent Quilters Guild, founded in 1995, meets monthly from January through November at the Presbyterian Church of Chestertown. The guild’s activities include monthly programs and workshops with local, regional and nationally known speakers, special interest bees, community outreach programs, an annual exhibit of smaller quilts and a bi-annual show, road trips and shop hops, and two annual retreats. Quilters of all skill levels, including beginners, are welcome. For more information, contact Gail Newman at 410.490.7102.

 

Being in Two Places at Once

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On Sunday, October 15, at 10 a.m., will give a sermon entitled “Being in Two Places at Once” for the Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River, 914 Gateway Drive (Crestview), Chestertown. 
If only we could be two places at once. Just imagine being able to accept two invitations. Strictly speaking, it’s impossible to be in two distinct places in the same moment, or is it? Unitarian Universalists are challenged to a free and responsible search for truth and meaning, and to hold that our own truth will not be another’s truth; to hold that there is not one perspective or one conclusion. At this service, Rev. Browning will explore the ways we are called to be in two places at once, and the courage it takes to accept this invitation.   
 
Childcare will be available during the service. 
 
All are welcome to our service. For more information, call 410-778-3440.

Friends of the Library November Book Sale Dates

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Beat the crowds and avoid Black Friday shoppers! The weekend before Thanksgiving, the Friends of the Kent County Public Library will hold their semi-annual book sale. You’ll find great items and a chance to stock up on some holiday gifts.

The Friends’ sale includes books, DVDs, games, audiobooks, music and puzzles. Items are under $2 – except a few special items! It’s an easy way to fill stockings for the whole family and give back to the community.

The sale will be held at Chestertown Branch of the Kent County Public Library on High Street on the following dates and times:

  • Thursday, November 16, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. – Members’ Night
    Non-members may join the FOL at the door for only $10 per person / $20 per family.

Light snacks and beverages will be served.

  • Friday, November 17, 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 18, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 19, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. – $5 Box Day!

You bring the box and fill it up so we don’t have to pack the books away. Special books and items are half price.

Cash or check only. All proceeds benefit the Kent County Public Library by subsidizing the purchase of new items and supporting community outreach programs.

If you’d like more information about the sale, visit www.friendsofthekcpl.org , e-mail saunderscynthia@gmail.com or find us on Facebook!  If you’d like to volunteer or join our board, we’d love to hear from you.

Hogwarts for a Day!

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The 4th Annual Chestertown HP Festival kicked off Friday evening, Oct. 6 with a dance party in the Garfield Center, attended by more than 250 festival-goers. Based on the popular Harry Potter fantasy novels by J.K. Rowling, the festival drew attendees of all ages from the entire middle Atlantic region.

For the festival, High Street was closed from Queen to Spring streets, with various vendors and exhibits along the way. In Fountain Park, a number of vendors offered Harry Potter-related items — such as Meckley Brooms of Lancaster County, Pa., which brought a selection of authentic-looking witches’ brooms. Vicky Meckley, whose husband is among the fourth generation of broom makers, said the 120-year-old company has been to a number of Potter festivals over the last year and frequently sells out its stock. The company also produces brooms for everyday use. She and the other family members at the booth took turns walking around town and enjoying the historic district.

The park was the site of a number of festival events, including a “Defense Against the Dark Arts” display where participants created giant bubbles to represent their “patronus” or magical protector.   The costume contest was also held in the park.  At other points around the downtown area, events included a “Magical Hall of Talking Portraits” at Kidspot, a Charms Class at the Sultana Education Center and a showing of “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” at Kent County Public Library. Everywhere you went, there were people in Harry Potter-related  costumes, both young and old, dressed as wizards, goblins, and dozens of Harrys and Hermiones, .

Goblins and Galleons, The Goblin Bank

At Olivander’s Wand Shop, AKA Bob Ortiz Furniture Studio, wizards could purchase a variety of wands from five different vendors. Michael and Ramona Liles of Philadelphia, selling at the Vele Cruce table, said they were attending their first festival.

A popular feature was the scavenger hunt, in which participants visit businesses all over the downtown area searching for clues. Those who found all the clues and returned their form to the booth in front of the Garfield received a prize. Each of the participating businesses was renamed after an equivalent locale in the books — so that the former Chestertown Bank building, now the headquarters of KRM Development, became Goblins and Galleons, with a clue hidden in the old bank vault, and Book Plate became Flourish and Blotts Bookseller.

This year, there were enough successful participants that the festival had given out all its prizes by 3 p.m. — an hour before the official end of the hunt!

Wilmer Park was the setting for the Quidditch tournament — a team sport with similarities to soccer and basketball. There were several competing teams, from as far away as Philadelphia and Washington. The sport differs from the version in the Harry Potter books in that none of the players are flying on broomsticks — although they are required to carry a symbolic broomstick between their legs during play. There were a good number of spectators picnicking in shady spots around the park — with food provided by several vendor trucks, many of them local.

The Quidditch Goals – Three Rings

Stretching Before the Game

Quidditch

Hogwarts faculty members Professor Dumbledore (Jim Landskroener), Nearly Headless Nick (David Ryan) and Professor Lupin (Zac Ryan)

The Garfield also offered “The Hogwarts Experience,” a chance for young festival-goers ages 8-12 to take part in a re-enactment of one of the key elements of the Harry Potter world, the famous school of wizardry. In two different sessions, 40 participants entered the theater where they were greeted by Headmaster Dumbledore and a panel of wizards. Each came to the stage to be sorted by the traditional “sorting hat” into one of the four Hogwarts houses — Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw or Slytherin. They were then sent to tables where faculty members instructed them in magical arts, from the use of wands to cast spells to the detection of hidden properties of objects — such as the taste of different colors of jelly beans. The actors playing the faculty wizards gave enthusiastic performances, and the young students clearly enjoyed the experience.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In these “magic classes,” students get to take out their wands and practice repelling a “boggart,” a magical being who takes the form of your worst fear.  With courage and heart – and just the right magical words –  students learn to vanquish their own personal boggart, a handy skill to have.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The close of the festival was marked by another dance, the “Azkaban Prison Break Party.” named after the key event in the third of the Harry Potter novels.

All in all, it was another successful Festival.  This year the festival was re-titled The HP Festival because the organization had received complaints from Warner Brothers’ legal department. But that didn’t throw a blanket over the fun – the magic was definitely there for this year’s festival.

 

Dumbledore, Professor & Headmaster of Hogwarts (portrayed by Jim Landskroener)

Nearly Headless Nick (David Ryan)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Faculty of Hogwarts – Left to right: Professor Sprout- Madeline McSherry, Professor Trelawny – Amelia Markosian, Professor Dumbledore – Jim Landskroener, Nearly Headless Nick – David Ryan, Professor Lupin – Zac Ryan

A Goblin works at His Desk in the Bank

Merkley Brooms 

4th Annual HP Festival

Diagon Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Diagon Alley is the Wizarding World’s Shopping District that is magically concealed from muggles’ eyes in London and  in Chestertown is located in the Old Mill alley just off Cross St near the old train station.

The Evergrain bakery and coffee shop became Wizardgrain for the day. A wonderful place for young witches and wizards to introduce their parents to butterbeer and everlasting gobstoppers.

Choosing a wand at Olivanders (Bob Ortiz Studio)

4th Annual HP Festival

Goblin

 

 

 

 

A Family Plan by Nancy Mugele

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My iPhone ringer has been on 24-7 on its loudest setting for nearly two months and I have no intention of turning it down anytime soon. I thought as an empty-nester I would not need to have my phone near me at all times of day and night but I have since changed my mind. Adult children living in places near and far, or travelling to places near and far, feel secure knowing that the red roof inn is monitoring their whereabouts.

On August 11, my youngest left on a trip out west on a quest to find the best trout fishing in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, and now, British Columbia. You can read about his adventures with his black lab Boh on his blog at thefishwhistler.com. My temporarily jobless, homeless son, who says he has never been happier writing and fishing, has been communicating more than normal – which I love – but it is always in the midnight to 2 a.m. time frame when his day out west is winding down and I am in bed. He told me he has been “finding out how much you really need, versus what you think you need.” An idealist and a realist all in one.

Last week my oldest, who believes in the power of experiences, used some vacation time from her job at UnderArmour to travel to Paris for sightseeing, Munich for Oktoberfest and Iceland for a day at the Blue Lagoon. Texts started at 4 a.m. Chestertown time as she began each day’s new adventure. Don’t get me wrong, I loved receiving the photos and messages, but coupled with a few 7:45 a.m. Kent School meetings, I have been especially exhausted for the past two weeks. Luckily, my middle daughter in Nashville is only an hour behind us and since she works at a school like me, she cannot travel in September, although she did get back on Eastern Standard Time this summer for a trip to Florida and two friends’ weddings. But, seriously, I can’t keep track of all the time zones my children are in!

Turn off your phone, you may say, but raising children post-9/11 required a different set of parenting skills than pre-9/11. Communication became the name of the game. We bought our oldest, whose birthday is 9/11 (and who was celebrating her “golden” birthday, turning 11 on 9/11), a cell phone immediately. As parents of a 6th grader in 2001, my husband and I would not have even thought about giving her a cell phone until the day the world stopped and that changed everything for us as parents. Suddenly, I had this intense need to be able to be in communication with my children at all times – especially as they traveled to other schools, towns, playing fields and ice rinks for athletics, or social events.

Parents in constant communication with their children got a bad rap as helicopter parents but truly I think it was purely about the communication – not the control. Parents need to hear their children’s voices especially when they are away from home, and especially in the world we live in which, all too often, it seems, experiences tragedies like terrorist attacks, the Las Vegas shootings, and natural disasters like Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria and the earthquake in Mexico. My heart aches for all those affected by all of the worst in nature and humanity these past few months.

And, while I don’t think that we should stop living our lives for fear of an attack or natural disaster, I believe we need to be intentional about two things – vigilance and communication. Any of my children could have been at the Jason Aldean concert – and in fact we all just saw him in Nashville at CMAFest. A co-worker just told me she is going to tell her older children to wear comfortable shoes when travelling or gathering in large groups of people so “you can be ready to run.” I am going to say this to mine as well. How sad that this is the world we now live in.

It seems to me that communication, above all else, is critical to our mental state. We have a primal need to let our loved ones know we are safe and to learn that they, too, are safe.  Now as our children live their lives in other parts of the country from home base, I greatly appreciate the cellphones we all carry. I know we constantly say that people are obsessed with their devices and social media, and we urge our friends to put their phone away. But I believe that being on our devices for connection to family and friends is important today for building and maintaining human relationships.

Yes, we still have a family plan with our cell provider and two of our three pay us monthly. (The fisherman has only a few more months with free cell service!) As well, the five of us have a family group text and at least once a day someone makes me smile and LOL across the miles. I will not turn off my phone and miss any of it!

Nancy Mugele is the Head of School at Kent School in Chestertown and a member of the Board of Horizons of Kent and Queen Anne’s. 

Unitarians to Examine Power of Forgiveness

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On Sunday, October 8, at 10 a.m., The Rev. Greg Chute will give a sermon entitled “Whatever Happened to Forgiveness?” for the Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River, 914 Gateway Drive (Crestview), Chestertown. 
Jane Hardy notes in her announcement of the sermon, “We don’t talk much about forgiveness; the word didn’t even make it into our UU Seven Principles statement of values. Is it relevant? Worthy of our attention? How do we feel about the idea? Or is there something better? Come and join the discussion about ‘letting our anger go’ and moving on.”
 
Childcare will be available during the service. 
 
All are welcome to the service. For more information, call 410-778-3440.

It’s a Dog Life! “Sylvia” Opens October 13 at The Garfield

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Jennifer Kafka-Smith, Will Robinson, Christine Kinlock

The Garfield Center for the Arts’ fall production Sylvia by A.R. Gurney opens at 8 pm Friday, October 13. Originally produced at the Manhattan Club in 1995 with Sarah Jessica Parker in the title role, this sparkling comedy is about a marriage and a dog.

Empty nesters Greg and Kate move to Manhattan after raising their family in the suburbs. While at the park, Greg finds Sylvia, a street-smart stray, and brings her home. With his career in a tailspin, Greg welcomes the distraction of dog ownership, while Kate, whose career is coming to fruition, affirms that “the dog phase of my life is definitely over”. Sylvia promptly becomes a bone of contention between Greg and Kate, straining their marriage with hilarious and touching effect.

Will Robinson as Greg, the husband, and Christine Kinlock as Sylvia the dog.

The show, directed by Bonnie Hill features a strong and talented cast. Will Robinson, last seen in Mr. Roberts at Garfield, will play Greg, a New York businessman whose mid-life crisis involves Sylvia. Jennifer Kafka-Smith, who was last seen in Love, Loss, and What I Wore, plays his sophisticated and long-suffering wife. A newcomer to the Garfield, but not to theater, Christine Kinlock, last seen in Shore Shakespeare’s summer production A Midsummer Night’s Dream, tackles the title role with gusto and charm. Bryan Betley completes the cast, playing the dog park visitor Tom, Kate’s friend Phyllis, and the androgynous marriage counselor, Leslie.

Along with the Director and Producer Julie Lawrence, the Production team includes Butch Clark, technical director and light design; Earl Lewin, set design; Patrick Fee; sound design; Steve Atkinson; stage manager; Meg Lenher, assist. stage manager; and Juanita Wieczoreck, costumes.

“Sylvia” will run two consecutive weekends, October 13 – 15, and October 20 – 22. Performance times are 8 pm Fridays and Saturdays, with 3 pm matinees on Sundays. Tickets are $20 general admission, $15 for the military or seniors aged 65 and older, and $10 for students. The show is sponsored in part by Running W Kennels, a safe and convenient dog boarding service for pet owners in Chestertown and the northern Eastern Shore of Maryland. Their staff provides quality pet care at affordable prices, with a personal touch. If Greg had ever had to leave Sylvia with a boarding service, he would have picked Running W!

Tickets are available online on the theater’s website www.GarfieldCenter.org or by calling the box office at 410-810-2060. The Garfield Center for the Arts at the Prince Theatre is located at 210 High Street, Chestertown.

Jennifer Kafka-Smith as Kate, the wife.