Downtown Chestertown Association Reboots its Summer Sidewalk Sale


The Chestertown Sidewalk Sale, July 27-28, is two fun-filled days of amazing shopping deals in stores along Cannon St., Cross St., High St., and Park Row. Occupying the same weekend as Crazy Days, the newly redesigned event will feature evening shopping hours, wine and spirits tastings, additional food offerings and live music. “Our goal is to create a more vibrant event offering new experiences,” commented Downtown Chestertown Association President Jennifer Laucik Baker. “We hope to bring more people into the community and introduce them to some of our new, unique businesses.” What remains unchanged is the special pricing on the latest trends in clothing, home décor, gifts, books, music, and handcrafted items made by Kent County artisans and furniture makers.

The weekend kicks off on Friday, July 27, with stores opening and sales beginning at 10am. You’ll find brands you won’t find in big box stores, and many items discounted by an average of 40%. From 5-9 p.m., enjoy “Chestertown After Dark.” Shops will keep their doors open until 9pm where visitors will find bargains on a wide variety of merchandise while enjoying a festive downtown filled with food, music, and fun. When you’ve shopped up an appetite, visit Figg’s Ordinary, Bad Alfred’s, The Kitchen, Chester River Wine & Cheese Co., Play It Again Sam’s, or the Fish Whistle. For a quick bite on the go visit Park Row for Walker Family Deep Fried Baskets, Suzie Bee Hand Pies, and Lockbriar & Daughter Ice Cream.

Friday night the Downtown Chestertown Association is excited to welcome Maryland wine, beer and spirits producers from Kent, Talbot, and Cecil county. In addition to Chestertown’s own Bad Alfred’s Distilling, producers will offer tastings, as well as bottles for purchase to take home. Look for Crow Vineyard & Winery, Broken Spoke Vineyard & Winery, St. Michaels Winery, Lyon Distilling, and Bull & Goat Brewery in various locations around town from 5-9 p.m.

– Bull & Goat is on tap at Bad Alfred’s Distilling
– Broken Spoke Vineyards at The Finishing Touch
– Crow Winery between The Village House and Welcome Home
– Lyon Distilling at Chester River Wine & Cheese Co.
– St. Michael’s Winery at Gabriel’s of Chestertown
– Wine tasting at Chestertown Natural Foods

As you shop, sip, nosh, and stroll, we’ve planned an evening filled with live music and entertainment. Figg’s Ordinary is hosting free corn hole games in their Cross Street parking lot from 6-8pm. Entertainment and live performances include:

5:00 – 6:30: Pres Harding with lap steel in front of Bad Alfred’s Distilling
5:00 – 6:00: Fredy Granillo with acoustic guitar on corner of Cross & Cannon
6:00 – 7:30: Van Williamson jazz at Figg’s Ordinary and Gabriel’s of Chestertown
6:30 – 7:30: Jigs & Reels celtic at Bee Crafty and Barn Life Primitives

The family fun in our historic arts & entertainment district continues Saturday, July 28 with special sales, face painting, and hand dipped ice cream. Visit the farmer’s market early and come back for a day of shopping with us.

For a full lineup of events and a preview of specials, visit

Qlarant Hosts Annual Grant Awards Event


Qlarant Foundation, the philanthropic arm of nationally recognized program integrity and quality company, Qlarant, has awarded charitable grants to fourteen Maryland and District of Columbia organizations seeking to improve health equity. Members of the Board of Directors for Qlarant Foundation held a reception for the 2018 Qlarant Grant Awards.

“Giving out these grants is so gratifying,” said Dr. Molly Burgoyne-Brian, Board Chair for Qlarant Foundation. “This is the 11th year that we have provided these grants to the community and each year it gets better. This year we’ve added four new grantees to the list of organizations that have received funds from Qlarant Foundation. We’ve now given over four and a half million dollars to fantastic organizations like these since 2007.”

Photo: Qlarant Foundation presented $385k to fourteen organizations: (left to right) front row: Brenda Crabbs (Qlarant Foundation Board Member), Sen. Addie Eckardt, Dr. Molly Burgoyne-Brian (Qlarant Foundation Board Chair), Deb Keller (VP Qlarant), back row: Robert Valenti (Qlarant Foundation Board Member), Amanda Neal (Qlarant Foundation Board Member).

This year’s grant recipients include previous grantees Access Carroll, Inc., Breast Care for Washington, D.C., Channel Marker, Inc., Community Ministries of Rockville, Help and Outreach Point of Entry, Inc., La Clinica del Pueblo, Maryland Foundation of Dentistry for the Handicapped, Miriam’s Kitchen, Mission of Mercy, and University of Maryland Medical Center’s Breathmobile. All of these organizations are dedicated to providing health and human services to underserved populations. First time grantees included Eastern Shore Wellness Solutions, University Legal Services, Inc., as well as Shirley Grace Pregnancy Center, Inc. and Girls in the Game; the latter two were honored for their commitment to women and young girls. Also attending the ceremony were Delegate Johnny Mautz and Senator Addie Eckardt. Sen. Eckardt presented citations to the organizations in her district.

During the luncheon, catered by Blue Heron Catering, the grantees were given the opportunity to present a summary of their organizations’ work and successes followed by workshops focused on partnership and networking.

“Our Foundation Grants Event is one of our favorite parts of what we do at Qlarant,” said Deb Keller, Qlarant Vice President. “Our ability to do the good work that we do and provide support for even more positive impacts to the community is what makes Qlarant so special.

About Qlarant Foundation

Qlarant Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Qlarant, a not-for-profit nationally respected leader in fighting fraud, waste & abuse, improving program quality, and optimizing performance. The organization was founded more than 45 years ago to improve health care and human services for all. Qlarant Foundation is focused on reinvesting in our people and resources to better support our clients’ missions.

If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Glennda Moragne El at 410.872.9632 or email at

Maryland Launches “Know Your Zone” Hurricane Preparedness Campaign


With the record-setting 2017 hurricane season still fresh in most American’s minds, the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), in conjunction with local emergency managers, is rolling out a new hurricane and severe weather evacuation system as a result of the Maryland hurricane evacuation study which concluded earlier this year.  The study identified 3 large areas in Maryland subject to tidal flooding. Know Your Zone aims to bring awareness of the evacuation zones to the forefront of Marylanders’ summer plans and make evacuation notices easier to disseminate.

“Proper and timely messaging for evacuations saves lives,” said MEMA Executive Director Russ Strickland. “This new system is designed to make it easier for local emergency managers to evacuate areas by encouraging Marylanders to Know Your Zone before a storm hits.”

The first year of the program will encourage Maryland residents to know the evacuation zone of their residence, business or vacation site. The zones are designated by letters A, B and C.

Zone A areas are the most likely to be impacted by severe flooding in the event of a major storm or hurricane. In future years, the program will focus on refining evacuation routes away from the affected areas.

The three evacuation zones only affect areas subject to tidal flooding or storm surge – communities at or near the Atlantic Ocean, the Coastal Bays, and the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. That covers 16 Maryland counties along with Annapolis, Baltimore City and Ocean City.

“Hurricane Sandy in 2012 was a wake-up call for the mid-Atlantic region;it could have been Maryland,” said Strickland. “Working with local and federal partners, and using technology that until recently was not available, we studied updated flooding and surge patterns caused by more powerful storms to develop these new evacuation plans.”

Residents of and visitors to Maryland are encouraged to visit the new interactive Know Your Zone web page,, where they can learn more about the project. On that page, you can type in an address and quickly find out what zone, if any, the property is located in.

If local officials feel an evacuation is needed to protect lives, they will issue the order by zones instead of having to define specific geographic areas. This program is similar to one rolled out last year in neighboring Virginia.

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June to November. Hurricanes can cause strong winds, heavy rain, inland flooding and other severe weather, but residents in Maryland can be prepared by ensuring they know how to receive a warning, have a plan, practice safety tips and know their evacuation zone.

It is important to remember Maryland can see hurricanes and impacts from a storm hundreds of miles away. Hurricanes can produce 150-plus miles per hour winds, tornadoes and tremendous flooding from both tidal surges as well as torrential rain

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently released its forecast for the upcoming season and predicted near- to above-normal activity.  However, it only takes one storm hitting the mid-Atlantic area to seriously affect Maryland.

Residents can also take the following actions to remain safe:

• Build an emergency supply kit and develop a family emergency and communications plan.
• Stay tuned to trusted sources such as the National Weather Service and local broadcasters for official weather information.
• Follow instructions and advice given by emergency officials, especially instructions related to evacuation.
• During severe weather, stay indoors away from windows, close all interior doors, and brace external doors. If you live near the shore or coast, expect the storm tide will inundate your home.
• Monitor NWS flood warnings for your area and be prepared to seek higher ground. Flooding is often our biggest threat.
• Fill a bathtub or other large container with water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets.
• Charge electronic devices before bad weather hits and consider keeping a charger in your car.

Additional preparedness information can be found on MEMA’s web site at or the Kent County Office of Emergency Services web site at Residents can also download the free MARYLAND Prepares mobile app at

Rep. Andy Harris Opens Application for Military Service Academy Nominations


Congressman Andy Harris, M.D. (MD-01) is pleased to announce that the U.S. Military Service Academies nomination application is now available for students wishing to join the class of 2023. Congressman Harris will nominate some of the finest students from Maryland’s First Congressional District for appointments to the U.S. Military, Naval, Air Force, and Merchant Marine Academies. The Coast Guard Academy does not require a Congressional nomination, though Congressman Harris will recommend interested applicants on a case-by-case basis.

Admission to the service academies is based on SAT/ACT scores, class rank, physical aptitude scores, extracurricular activities, athletic abilities, medical examinations, and a panel interview. Academies accept applications on a rolling basis beginning in September. Final acceptance is also contingent upon receiving a nomination from an authorized source such as one’s Congressman or Senator.

The deadline to apply for a nomination from Congressman Harris is October 22, 2018. All qualified residents of Maryland’s First District are encouraged to apply. Interviews will be conducted in the fall by Congressman Harris’ Military Academy Review Board, which is made up of veterans and reservists of the United States military. The Service Academies will be notified of Congressman Harris’ nominations by December 31, 2018.

Students can download the nomination application at Completed applications should be submitted to Congressman Harris’ Kent Island District office at 100 Olde Point Village, Suite 101, Chester, MD 21619. For questions, please call the Kent Island District Office at 410-643-5425.

Chester River Health Foundation Golf Tournament Raises Funds for UM SMC


After nearly three weeks of rain, the sun appeared for the UM Chester River Health Foundation’s 24th annual golf tournament, which was sponsored by the Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary. By the time the last putt was dropped, golfers and donors had contributed more than $97,000, before expenses, toward the purchase of two sets of laparoscopic and arthroscopic equipment for the Surgical Services Department at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown.

One hundred twelve men and women teed off, shotgun-style, in a “Step-Aside, Best-Ball” tournament, on Friday, June 1, at the Chester River Yacht & Country Club outside of Chestertown.

“In the next year, our hospital will replace two sets of laparoscopic (abdominal and other procedures) and arthroscopic (joint procedures) surgical equipment,” said Foundation Chair, Carl Gallegos.  “The Foundation has committed to raising $200,000 to completely fund its purchase and this tournament was our premiere fundraiser toward our goal.  We are extraordinarily appreciative of the community-wide support of this event.”

Men’s first place, low net, team (L-R) Frankie Smith, Rich Walls, Andrew Gillespie and Patrick Gillespie.

Thirty two volunteers, mostly current and former hospital employees and Auxiliary members, spent the day on the course, offering golfers refreshments and spur-of-the-moment fundraising chances to increase the odds of winning prizes.  “We could not host this event without our small army of volunteers and the Foundation Board is enormously grateful for their help.” Gallegos said.

At the after-tournament awards reception, which was sponsored by Leslie and Andy Price, prizes donated by local community businesses were awarded for 17 events on the course, including 11 Closest-to-the-Pins; Longest Drive Not In the Fairway; and Most Accurate Drive.

Three foursomes took home Low Net prizes: Blyth Reynolds, Mary Anne Shea and Rich and Paddy Tobey (mixed team with a score of 46.25); Sandy Bjork, Carol Droge, Marti Hawkins and Jane Huikill (women’s team with a score of 59.25); and Andrew Gillespie, Patrick Gillespie,

Fankie Smith and Rich Walls (men’s team with a score of 42.5). The Low Gross award went to the Chesapeake Bank & Trust team of Peter Heller, Jr., Rob Thompson, Justin Varga and Alden Yetman with a score of 57.

No one made a Hole in One on any of the four par 3 holes to win $10,000 cash or Superbowl 2019 tickets, and the $1,000 prize for Closest-to-the-Pin within 12” went unclaimed.  Andrew Gillespie missed winning the Putting Contest by just a few feet, leaving the $10,000 prize for next year contestants to claim—on Friday, May 31, 2019!

We hope you’ll mark your calendars now for the Silver Anniversary of this event at which co-founder, Dan Saunders, will be honored!

About UM Shore Regional Health: As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,600 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers work with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Children’s Author Lynn W. Peters at Twigs & Teacups July 6


Children’s author Lynn W. Peters will be signing copies of her book BROWNIE AND BO AT THE BIG WOOD DINER outside of Twigs & Teacups for July First Friday. The story is the tale of two hungry trout and the adventures that they have. Peters will also talk to children about the basics of fly fishing and the importance of keeping our rivers clean to maintain good habitat for fish.

A part time Chestertown resident, Peters also spends time in the mountains of Idaho where the story is set.

There will be some fish themed activities for children as well. Even adults may enjoy the beautiful watercolors in the book done by illustrator Zack D. Brown.

The Magical Illusions of Ran’D Shine at KCPL June 27


Kent County Public Library is kicking off the 2018 Summer Reading program with the incredible magical illusions of Ran’D Shine!

As a new millennium magician, Ran’D Shine melds innovative twists with classic illusion magic for a show that will leave you dazzled. For more than a decade, he has captured the imagination of audiences from Hollywood to New York City.  He has already read your mind and knows that you want to know more. Come see the magic for yourself at one of three performances!

Wednesday, June 27

10:30am North County Branch

2:30pm Rock Hall Branch

5:30 pm Chestertown Branch

All ages are welcome at these free performances!

For more information about Kent County Public Library’s 2018 Summer Reading Program, including many other events and a work-at-your-own-pace game where kids and teens can earn points to buy prizes all summer long, visit  Sign up to play the game is open and can be done online or in person at any KCPL branch.  Questions?  Give us a call at 410-778-3636.

New Chesapeake College President to Speak at Independence Day Celebration


The Queen Anne’s County Historical Society has announced that Dr. Clifford Coppersmith will be the Keynote Speaker for its Independence Day Celebration at Aspen Institute. Dr. Coppersmith is the new President of Chesapeake College.

The annual Independence Day Celebration is jointly sponsored by the Queen Anne’s County Historical Society and the Aspen Institute. The celebration will be held on July 4 at 11am at the William Paca Memorial in front of the Institute’s Houghton House off Carmichael Road near Queenstown, MD. It will last approximately 90 minutes.

Judy Price the Director of Aspen Institute’s Wye River Campus said, “Aspen Institute invites the community to join us on July 4 to celebrate Independence Day, a tradition that was started over fifty years ago by the former owner, Arthur Houghton, Jr. We promise our visitors a moving and meaningful ceremony to commemorate this treasured national holiday.”

Dr. Coppersmith’s address will be “These Evident Truths: The Declaration of Independence and the Idea of America”.

The Society’s President, Chris Pupke, said, “We are delighted that Dr. Coppersmith will deliver the Keynote Address this year. It will be a great way to introduce him to the rich history of the Eastern Shore and for us to gain perspective from him about the Declaration of Independence and our nation.”

Dr. Coppersmith became the sixth president of Chesapeake College at the end of May. Prior to coming to the Eastern Shore, Dr. Coppersmith was the Dean of City College, an embedded community college within Montana State University Billings. Dr. Coppersmith holds a doctorate in history and anthropology from Oklahoma State University. He served as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army Reserve and Army National Guard, and has spent 45 years in scouting with the Boys Scouts of America.

Founded in 1965 as Maryland’s first regional community college, Chesapeake College serves five Eastern Shore counties –Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot. With more than 130,000 alumnae, Chesapeake has 2,300 students and almost 10,000 people enrolled in continuing education programs.

Established in 1950, the Aspen Institute is a nonpartisan forum for values-based leadership and the exchange of ideas. It has earned a reputation for gathering diverse and renowned thought leaders, scholars and members of the public to grapple with some of the world’s most complex issues.

The Queen Anne’s County Historical Society is dedicated to preserving and disseminating the history of Queen Anne’s County. The Society owns two museums in Centreville that are open to the public on the first Saturdays of each month.

Early Voting Open through Thursday


Candidates’ signs outside the Kent County Public Library, the polling place for early voting — Photo by Peter Heck

Do you plan to vote in this year’s primary elections? You can avoid lines and that last-minute rush to vote before the polls close by taking part in early voting at the Chestertown branch of the Kent County Public Library. Early voting is open through Thursday, June 21, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Polls are in the meeting room near the High Street entrance to the library; voters may enter from High Street or by the side entrance after regular library hours.

Voters can choose their party’s candidates for Governor and Lieutenant Governor, Comptroller, Attorney General, U. S. Senate and House of Representatives, Maryland state Senate and House of Delegates, and a slate of local offices including County Commissioner and State’s Attorney. For the primary election, voters may only vote for candidates of the party they are registered in. Unaffiliated voters, often called “independent” voters, meaning those who have registered to vote but have chosen not to affiliate themselves as either Democrats or Republicans, cannot vote in the primary, whose purpose is to select party candidates. Other political parties, such as the Libertarian or Green parties, do not currently hold primaries.  These voters can vote in the general election on November 6.

What if you’re not registered to vote at all?  You can do that at early voting, too, and then cast your ballot the same day.  To register to vote, you will need to bring ID and proof of address. According to the Maryland Board of Elections, “To register and vote during early voting, go to an early voting center in the county where you live and bring a document that proves where you live. This document can be your MVA-issued license, ID card, or change of address card, or your paycheck, bank statement, utility bill, or other government document with your name and new address. You will be able to register to vote and vote.”  So your Maryland driver’s license should do it.

US citizens who are residents of Maryland can register to vote as early as age 16 though they must be 18 before they can vote in a general election.  However, seventeen-year-olds may vote in this June primary to help chose their party’s candidate as long as they will be 18 before November 6 and thus eligible to vote in the General Election.

The date for regular voting in the primary election is Tuesday, June 26, when polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. You must be registered before June 26 in order to vote in the Primary Election on June 26. For a complete list of polling places and other information, see the Maryland Board of Elections website.

The general election takes place Nov. 6. The Chestertown Spy will bring you more election news and analysis throughout the election season.