World Class Fiddler Ken Kolodner to Perform at Tea Party Festival


Brad and Ken Kolodner

Chestertown Tea Party Festival-goers will be treated to some new performers in addition to traditional favorites on Saturday, May 27. New to the Main Stage are The Ken & Brad Kolodner Trio, and local favorites Philip Dutton and the Alligators, who will also be collaborating with the popular acapella gospel group Sombarkin’.

The dynamic father-son team Ken & Brad Kolodner will perform on the Main Stage at 1 pm.  They weave together a captivating soundscape on hammered dulcimer, banjo, twin fiddles and hammered mbira pushing the boundaries of the Old-Time tradition into uncharted territory. Regarded as one of the most influential hammered dulcimer players in North America and fine old-time fiddler, Ken Kolodner has joined forces with his son Brad Kolodner, a renowned banjoist, old-time fiddler and leader in the next generation of Old-Time musicians carrying the torch. Their latest release and third recording, “The Swift House”, reached the top of the Folk DJ charts in early 2017. Together, they infuse their own brand of driving, innovative, tasteful and unique interpretations of acoustic roots music. They perform with a “creative curiosity that lets all listeners know that a passion for traditional music yet thrives in every generation.” Locking everything together is the versatile guitarist/vocalist Luke Chohany.

Karen Somerville and Sombarkin’ will perform immediately following the Tea Party re-enactment at 2:45, followed by Philip Dutton and the Alligators, who play a mix of Louisiana music from Satchmo to Chenier.

Other musicians include the acapella group, The New Gospelites, and multi-instrumentalists Stephen Christoff (a long-time Colonial Williamsburg performer), and Gabe Stone at the Garfield Center for the Arts.

For a complete schedule of performances and other information about the Chestertown Tea Party Festival, May 26 – 28, please visit 

Chestertown’s “Taste of the Town” Celebrates 10th Anniversary


Taste of the Town celebrated its 10th anniversary on May 7.  From noon to 3:00 pm, Fountain Park was filled with guests enjoying samples from 18 local vendors.  There were food and drinks from an even dozen restaurants plus four wineries and one brewery.  This is the first year that the vineyards and brewery participated – a welcome addition to a popular Chestertown tradition.

Co-chairs Tara Holste and Andy Goddard did a great job organizing the event.  About 250 people from all over the region filled the tent in Fountain Park.   The tent even had a large sunlight section in its roof. Attendees voted for their favorites in three categories:

Attendees voted for their favorites in three categories: Most Creative – Best Use of Local Ingredients – Most Flavorful.  Ballots are currently being tabulated.  So stay tuned for the results of these People’s Choice awards.

The Whistle Stop Winery was one of five wineries at the event.  Also present were the Clovelly Vineyards, Crow Vineyard & Winery, Dove Valley Winery, and Olney Winery.  Beer lovers got to sample the wares from the Bull and Goat Brewery.

Lockbriar Farms ice cream was very popular!

Fish Whistle – Jeff Carroll and one of his cooks prepare Clovelly Beef Sliders.

Participating restaurants were Barbara’s On the Bay, Chester River Yacht & Country Club, Evergrain Bakery, Figg’s Ordinary, Fish Whistle, The Kitchen at the Imperial, Lemon Leaf Cafe, Little Village Bakery, Lockbriar Farms, Luisa’s Cucina Italiana, O’Connor’s Irish Pub and Procollino’s Italian Eatery. Serving wines were Clovelly Vineyards, Crow Vineyard & Winery, Dove Valley Winery, Olney Winery and Whistle Stop Winery. Beer drinkers could sample the products of Bull & Goat Brewery.

Figg’s Ordinary serves gluten-free goodies – flatbread with assorted toppings.

There were over 20 raffle prizes that covered a wide range of items, including gift certificates to many restaurants and local stores, two tickets to any Garfield Center for the Arts production, a hanging basket from Unity Church Hill Nursery, and a jar of goodies from Gabriel’s of Chestertown.

Taste of the Town is presented by the Downtown Chestertown Association with the help of many volunteers and generous sponsors.  Tech support was provided by Butch Clark. For more information see Taste of Chestertown,   Downtown Chestertown Association (DCA),