Downtown Chestertown Association Welcomes New Executive Committee

Share

The Downtown Chestertown Association (DCA) is pleased to announce the election of Jennifer Laucik-Baker (37) as the new president of the DCA. Jenn and her husband John are residents of Chestertown’s Arts & Entertainment district the co-owners of Chester River Wine & Cheese Co. and Welcome Home.

“It takes courage, knowledge of how to get things done, and a strong network of trusted advisors to create and run a sustainable business. As the new President of the Downtown Chestertown Association I aspire to help DCA members strengthen our collective marketing efforts, advocate for business needs, and help our small businesses adapt and grow during times of change.”

New DCA Executive Committee members include Shannon Short (Eastern Interiors and Eastern Engraving), Marjorie Adams (Mimi’s Closet), and Sarah Crump (White Swan Colonial Inn and Tavern). Bob Ramsey (The Finishing Touch) will continue as the DCA’s treasurer for another term.

In its 52nd year of service, the DCA helps independent businesses owners through collective marketing, collaborative community events and sponsorships, knowledge sharing and education, and collective strategic planning. The DCA strives to:

▪ Create a positive and welcoming experience for local and out of town guests; strengthen WAC student experience
▪ Create a foundation for cooperative sales and marketing among DCA members and county businesses
▪ Improve understanding of the diversity of shops, galleries, art, food & beverage experiences available in Chestertown
▪ Build awareness of, and participation in, DCA and locally sponsored events
▪ Support execution of county and town marketing; collaborate on strategies and plans

The DCA would like to extend its tremendous thanks to Kristen Owen of Chesapeake Bank and Trust for her inspirational and outstanding leadership as the President of the DCA over the last 4 years. Her passion for partnership created a strong foundation for ongoing collaboration with the Town of Chestertown, Kent County Tourism and Economic Development, Washington College, and Main Street Chestertown. Under her leadership the DCA:

▪ Launched Porchfest, a popular music event partnering local musicians with homes in the downtown shopping district
▪ Strengthened relationship with Washington College, particularly in collaborations with their Student Government Association, Alumni and Admissions departments
▪ Advocated for funding for Chestertown’s Marina and Waterfront as a member of the Chestertown Waterfront Coalition
▪ Increased Small Business Saturday awareness and traffic to downtown retailers by becoming a Small Business Saturday Neighborhood Champion
▪ Established social media presence and improved community engagement

The DCA would also like to thank retiring Executive Committee members Barbara Jorgenson (Historical Society of Kent County), Wanda Gorman (Skippy’s Riverside Gifts & More), and Robert Ortiz (Ortiz Stuido and CREATE Art.Craft.Design).

Taste of the Town Set for May 7

Share

One of Chestertown’s signature events, the 10th Annual Taste of the Town & County, will take place Sunday, May 7, noon to 3 pm in Fountain Park. Organized by the Downtown Chestertown Association (DCA), the affair pairs restaurants and diners, farms and chefs from throughout the county.

­

Attendees can sample a tantalizing variety of dishes prepared by local chefs and caterers who are encouraged to partner with local producers in sourcing ingredients. Prior offerings included cream of crab soup, gnocchi, pulled pork, beef brisket, oysters, beet napoleon, lemon pie and chocolate bread pudding. People’s Choice awards will be given to Most Creative, Best Use of Local Ingredients, and Most Flavorful.

This year, Taste of the Town is partnering with the Maryland Wineries Association to bring wineries from across the state to Chestertown.  Wineries will work with chefs to develop perfect pairings of food and Maryland wines. The food and wine tasting pairings are included in the ticket price. Glasses of wine and separate wine tastings will be available for sale, as well as local beer.

Proceeds from the event and the popular raffle benefit the Samaritan Group of Kent County, which provides emergency shelter and other services for Kent County Maryland for those that find themselves in need and for whom no other source of assistance is readily available.

Advance pass tickets are $15, and are available at The Finishing Touch, 311 High St Chestertown or on line at www.TasteofChestertown.com through April 29. Admission at the door is $20.

The DCA is committed to maintaining a viable historic business district as an integral part of preserving the quality of Kent County life. For additional information, visit www.TasteofChestertown.com or call 443 480 1987.

Santa’s Arrival and Christmas Parade November 25-26

Share

The Chestertown holiday season officially kicks off on Friday, November 25 at 6:45pm in Fountain Park when members of Kent County Community Marching Band herald Santa’s arrival by fire truck at 7:00pm. After he arrives, Santa will see children in his house until 8:00pm. Boy Scout Troop 130 will take pictures of children with Santa (donation encouraged), and will also selling hot chocolate in the park.

The Annual Kent County Christmas Parade takes place the following day, Saturday, November 26 at 10:00am (rain, snow or shine). This popular holiday event features marching bands, classic automobiles, various floats, Santa, Rudolph, Olaf, the Grinch and of course some of Santa’s trusty elves. Cash prizes will be awarded by parade judges to entrants in each category thanks to the support of Figg’s Ordinary, Chester River Wine & Cheese, Twigs & Teacups, Cassinelli Distilling and Spa Angels. Participation in the parade is open to everyone. If you are interested in participating, please call Kristen at 410-778-1600.

Santa will be in his Fountain Park house seeing children after the parade, from 11:00am to 1:00pm, and Kent County High School Music Boosters will be selling hot chocolate. Santa will also be available in his Fountain Park house on Saturdays December 3, 10 and 17 from 11:00am to 1:00pm. Children will receive gift bags from Santa courtesy of Dukes-Moore Insurance Agency and Garfield Center for the Arts.

Also on Saturday, November 26, celebrate Small Business Saturday by shopping in Downtown Chestertown. This nationwide event spotlighting local, independently owned shops and businesses provides an opportunity to reinvest your holiday shopping dollars in your local community and find some unique gifts, too. This year to celebrate Small Business Saturday, members of the Downtown Chestertown Association are offering a shopping passport, which provides discounts if you shop at participating businesses and also gives you the opportunity to win prizes if you collect multiple passport stamps.

Chestertown’s holiday festivities continue the following weekend, December 2, 3 and 4 with Winterfest Weekend. In its third year, Winterfest is a town wide celebration that kicks off with a special illuminated First Friday, and continues through the weekend with The Soroptimists’ Festival of Trees, a gingerbread workshop, the Chester River Chorale’s holiday concert and many more family friendly events and activities.

For more information about these holiday activities and other events and projects sponsored by Downtown Chestertown Association, please visit www.downtownchestertown.org.

DCA Hosts “Red, Hot and Blue Celebration” August 5

Share
IndDay_15_Cerin0

Mayor Chris Cerino will perform again this year for Red, Hot & Blue Celebration.

The Downtown Chestertown Association (DCA) encourages everyone to their “Red, Hot and Blue Celebration” Friday, August 5, in Fountain Park from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. This event was originally scheduled for July 1, but was rained out.

This family friendly event features complimentary cotton candy, popcorn and sno cones sponsored by local, independent businesses, $1.50 hot dogs and 50 cent soft drinks. Downtown merchants will be handing out free patriotic bubbles, glow in the dark bracelets and other festive accoutrements. Bring your lawn chairs and settle in for the live entertainment, beginning with Music Life students and owner Bill Drazga followed by Mayor Chris Cerino and some special guests.

Event sponsors include Bookplate, Cassinelli Distillery, Chester River Wine and Cheese, Gabriel’s of Chestertown, Houston’s Dockside Emporium, KidSPOT, Twigs & Teacups, Linda Kuiper, Bill Arrowood, Lemon Leaf Café and the Historical Society of Kent County.

The Downtown Chestertown Association is a voluntary non-profit membership organization of businesses, non-profit groups and people interested in preserving and promoting the well-being of downtown Chestertown.

DCA Hosts 8th Annual Old Fashioned “Independents’ Day” Celebration” July 1

Share

The Downtown Chestertown Association (DCA) invites everyone to their 8th annual “Independents’ Day” Celebration Friday, July 1 in Fountain Park from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m

This family friendly event features complimentary cotton candy, popcorn and sno cones sponsored by local, independent businesses, $1.50 hot dogs and 50 cent soft drinks. Downtown merchants will be handing out free patriotic bubbles, glow in the dark bracelets and other festive accoutrements. Bring your lawn chairs and settle in for the live entertainment, beginning with Music Life students and owner Bill Drazga followed by Mayor Chris Cerino and some special guests.

Event sponsors include Bookplate, Cassinelli Distillery, Chester River Wine and Cheese, Gabriel’s of Chestertown, Houston’s Dockside Emporium, KidSPOT, Twigs & Teacups, Linda Kuiper, Bill Arrowood,  Lemon Leaf Café and the Historical Society of Kent County.

The Downtown Chestertown Association is a voluntary non-profit membership organization of businesses, non-profit groups and people interested in preserving and promoting the well-being of downtown Chestertown.

“Downtown Chestertown is more than a shopping destination, says Kristen Owen, DCA President, “it is also a center for many activities that enhance our lives – the farmers’ market, festivals, theatrical and musical events, art shows, parades, the municipal and county offices, Washington College, historic, arts and non-profit organizations. Our downtown business district is the backdrop for all those things, and by extending our hospitality and inviting people to come experience downtown we hope they will feel an ‘ownership’ in its future.”

Taste of the Town Chefs Receive People’s Choice Awards

Share
Lina of Little Village Bakery puts final touches on a cake - runner up for Best Use of Local Ingredients

Lina of Little Village Bakery puts final touches on a cake
– runner up for Best Use of Local Ingredients

Guests attending the 9th annual Taste of the Town were tasked with a difficult decision; choosing which dishes were the “Most Creative,” “Most Flavorful,”
and whose food showed the “Best Use of Local Ingredients.” The event was held on Sunday, May 1 in downtown Chestertown’s Fountain Park, and featured 13 restaurants from Chestertown and all corners of Kent County.

“Most Flavorful” dish was awarded to The Kitchen at the Imperial for their Barbacoa beef tacos and spicy sriracha slaw. Runner up was the braised short rib, with red onion marmalade from Chef Larry Ortmann, Chester River Yacht & Country Club. Barbara’s On the Bay was voted “Best Use of Local Ingredients” for the Crab Pretzel, with The Lemon Leaf’s Crab Bisque a close second. Chef Bruce Wetterau from the Kitty Knight House received “Most Creative” for his Crab Stuffed Chicken, with the Little Village Bakery’s Honey Lavender Cupcakes and Vanilla Bean Cupcakes with Strawberry Champagne Filling just one vote behind.

The Taste of the Town is sponsored by the Downtown Chestertown Association, (DCA) with generous support from Chesapeake Bank and Trust, Chestertown Natural Foods, DE Nicholson, Yerkes Construction, Peoples Bank, Twigs and Teacups and Dixon Valve & Coupling.

The DCA is committed to maintaining a viable historic business district as an integral part of preserving the quality of Kent County life. For additional information, visit www.downtownchestertown.org.

Porchfest Returns to Chestertown’s Arts & Entertainment District May 14

Share

Downtown Chestertown Association invites you to join us for a spring afternoon of music and merriment on Saturday, May 14 at our second annual Porchfest. Eleven different musical acts will play on residential front porches and in front of shops between noon and 5:45pm. Visitors can enjoy the sounds of bluegrass, folk, as they discover new shops, galleries and restaurants. The unique variety of historic homes and buildings, along with our tree-lined brick sidewalks, serve as the perfect stage for showcasing our local talent.

Once you finish shopping at the Chestertown Farmers’ and Artisans’ Market, wander over to the front porch of Chesapeake Bank & Trust Company for jazz at noon, courtesy of the Van Williamson Trio. The music continues throughout Chestertown’s Historic District all afternoon, with performances by a cappella trio Sombarkin; Salvadoran singer-songwriter Fredy Granillo; FishCastle, who describe themselves as “a man, a woman, a boatload of instruments, a tumbling sea of sound;” and the Chestertown Ukulele Club, to name a few.

In the event of rain, indoor venues will be used. Regardless of the weather, take the time to explore Downtown Chestertown, as shops and galleries will be featuring new spring items, and restaurants will be serving up delicious local dishes.

Follow Downtown Chestertown Association on Facebook for updates on scheduling leading up to the event. For additional information about Downtown Chestertown Association and its members, visit www.downtownchestertown.org; and for more information about Chestertown, visit www.townofchestertown.com.

About Porchfest
The first Porchfest was held in Ithaca, NY in 2007. Since then, Ithaca’s Porchfest has grown and the concept has taken hold in 29 other cities and towns, including Napa, CA, Tuscon, AZ, Montreal, Canada, Portland, ME and Washington, DC, to name a few.

PORCHFEST 2016 SCHEDULE

12:00 – 1:00 — Van Williamson Trio, Chesapeake Bank & Trust, 245 High Street
12:30 – 1:00 — Clark Bjorke, Linda Roy Walls Studio, 320 Cannon Street
1:00 – 1:30 — Fredy Granillo, Create art.craft.design, 113 S. Cross Street
1:30 – 2:00 — Tom Fogarty, Bennett Residence, 106 Cannon Street
2:00 – 3:00 — FishCastle, 106 S. Queen Street
2:30 – 3:15 — Chestertown Ukulele Club, Pritchard Residence, 119 High Street
3:00 – 4:00 — Ampersand, Cassinelli Distilling, 323 High Street
3:30 – 4:00 — Chris Owen, Mat Warrington & Tim Kerr, Garfield Center, 210 High Street
4:00 – 4:30 — Sombarkin, Sumner Hall, 206 S. Queen Street
4:30 – 5:00 — Jay & Lisa Yerkes, Bookplate, 112 S. Cross Street
5:15 – 5:45 — Andrew Wade, Chester River Wine & Cheese, 117 S. Cross Street

May Day Brings a Culinary Feast to Fountain Park

Share

On Sunday, May 1, food lovers will converge on downtown Chestertown’s Fountain Park for the 9th Annual Taste of the Town & County, featuring chefs from all corners of the county.

Culinary treats this year include cream of crab soup, rosemary focaccia, fried green tomatoes, braised short ribs with red orange marmalade, pork belly, crab stuffed chicken, honey lavender cupcakes and home made ice cream. A selection of Crow Vineyard wines and local beers will be available. Why not experiment with pairing wine and food…or perhaps a 16 Mile Ale with a crab pretzel?

Don’t miss Chefs Kevin McKinney from K-B Market & Kitchen School, Jordan Lloyd from the Bartlett Pear Inn and Doug Stewart of Stewart’s Catering as they prepare a dish created from a “mystery basket “ of produce donated by local farmers in Diced! A Local Food Challenge.”

Advance pass tickets are $15, and are available at The Finishing Touch, 311 High St Chestertown or on line at www.TasteofChestertown.com.through April 29. Admission at the door is $20.

Taste of the Town is presented by the Downtown Chestertown Association, which is committed to maintaining a viable historic business district as an integral part of preserving the quality of Kent County life. Sponsors of the event include Chesapeake Bank and Trust, Chestertown Natural Foods, and Sysco. For additional information, visit www.TasteofChestertown.com or call 443 480 1987.

Save the Date: Taste of the Town Set for May 1

Share

One of Chestertown’s signature events, the 9th Annual Taste of the Town & County, will take place Sunday, May 1, noon to 3 pm in Fountain Park. Organized by the Downtown Chestertown Association, the affair pairs restaurants and diners, farm and chefs from throughout the county.

Chef Jordan Lloyd of Barlett Pear Inn will participate in the cooking demo, Diced! at Taste of the Town.

Chef Jordan Lloyd of Barlett Pear Inn will participate in the cooking demo, Diced! at Taste of the Town.

Attendees can sample a tantalizing variety of dishes prepared by local chefs and caterers who are encouraged to partner with local producers in sourcing ingredients. Prior offerings include cream of crab soup, gnocchi, pulled pork, beef brisket, oysters, beet napoleon, lemon pie and chocolate bread pudding. People’s Choice awards will be given to Most Creative, Best Use of Local Ingredients, and Most Flavorful.

While sampling the food, watch Chefs Kevin McKinney from K-B Market & Kitchen School, Jordan Lloyd from the Bartlett Pear Inn and Doug Stewart of Stewart’s Catering participate in “Diced! A Local Food Challenge,” patterned after the popular cable TV show “Chopped.” Each chef will prepare a dish from a “mystery basket” made up of ingredients donated by local farmers. The chefs have no idea what is in the basket until just prior to show time!

Crow Vineyard and Winery in Kennedyville will be on hand with a selection of wines to purchase by the glass; local beers will be for sale as well. Proceeds from a raffle and auction benefit two local groups dedicated to maintaining the flowers, planters and trees in downtown Chestertown: Curb Appeal and the Chestertown Garden Club.

Come early to view entries from the annual Paint the Town Quick Draw competition. Paintings will be displayed along Cross Street prior to the opening of Taste of the Town. Artist from across the East Coast are participating in this year’s four day plein air event culminating in the Sunday morning competition.

Advance pass tickets are $15, and are available at The Finishing Touch, 311 High St Chestertown or on line at www.TasteofChestertown.com.through April 29. Admission at the door is $20.

The DCA is committed to maintaining a viable historic business district as an integral part of preserving the quality of Kent County life. For additional information, visit www.TasteofChestertown.com or call 443 480 1987.