Daycations | AroundMainLine.com - The Philadelphia Region's Main Line Magazine http://aroundmainline.com Living and Loving Philadelphia's Main Line Thu, 11 May 2017 19:59:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The Charm of Chesapeake City http://aroundmainline.com/living/the-charm-of-chesapeake-city.html http://aroundmainline.com/living/the-charm-of-chesapeake-city.html#respond Mon, 20 Jun 2016 03:46:51 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=635 A gem of a road trip, a glorious destination wedding choice, and one romantic seaside town-Chesapeake City is the secret sleepy hot spot that Main Liners are about to fall head over heels in love with.

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By AML Publisher
Photos by Jubilee Photography

Pell Gardens is a popular setting for brides and grooms to hold an intimate outdoor wedding ceremony.

Pell Gardens is a popular setting for brides and grooms to hold an intimate outdoor wedding ceremony.

Chesapeake City is one of the Main Line’s best kept daycation secrets. Just over an hour from downtown Wayne (with no traffic on 95), this quaint slice of Cecil County, Maryland is a seaside getaway not to miss. My family has dined many a Mother’s Day at the wonderful Bayard House Restaurant—delighting in their award-winning crab soup, tournedos Baltimore and a most delicious Bloody Mary…or two. The Bayard House looks out onto the famous Chesapeake and Delaware Canal (C&D Canal), one of only two vital sea-level canals in the United States. The C&D Canal is an international waterway and the third busiest canal in the world!

Travel & Leisure Magazine named Chesapeake City “A Top 10 crowd-free weekend getaway near America’s largest cities.” The town was formerly known as “The Village of Bohemia,” since Chesapeake City was a dream of Augustine Herman. The First Lord of Bohemia Manor, Herman (1621-1686) was a Czech explorer, merchant, and cartographer who lived in New Amsterdam and Cecil County. In 1764 a canal route was marked and the actual project started in 1824.

Chesapeake City is on the National Historic Registry as well as Maryland’s Historic Registry. The town is an ideal, romantic fall daycation-just over an hour drive from the heart of the Main Line.

Chesapeake City is on the National Historic Registry as well as Maryland’s Historic Registry. The town is an ideal, romantic fall daycation-just over an hour drive from the heart of the Main Line.

But, this terrific city would not have thrived and survived had it not been for the great Allaire du Pont-yes, of those du Ponts. Allaire C. du Pont sparked the revitalization of Chesapeake City and led the efforts to preserve thousands of acres of farmland in southern Cecil County.

Ms. du Pont was an illustrious, grand dame who resided at her nearby Woodstock Farm until her death in January of 2006 at the age of 92. A very successful horse breeder, the farm was home to Ms. duPont’s beloved Kelso-a mud-colored gelding known fondly as “Kelly.” The only five-time “Horse of the Year” (1960-64), Kelso retired to Woodstock Farm in 1966 where duPont often rode him on foxhunts. (You can visit Kelly in a horse cemetery behind the farm office in a shaded area identified by a circle of weathered Greek columns and majestic trees.) A quote at the base of Kelso’s granite marker simply says: “Where he gallops the earth sings.”

Allaire lead a life of Gatsbian-proportions-traveling to exotic locations across the globe. Along with her husband, Richard du Pont, a member of the prominent du Pont family whom she wed in 1934, the dynamic duo flew on the airship Hindenburg, made frequent trips to exotic ports such as Cuba and Venezuela, and reportedly held extravagant ice skating parties on the nearly frozen canal.

Award winning crab soup, courtesy of The Bayard House (bayardhouse.com), is part of the Chesapeake City experience.  The restaurant offers upscale spectacular water view dining on Maryland’s eastern shore.

Award winning crab soup, courtesy of The Bayard House (bayardhouse.com), is part of the Chesapeake City experience. The restaurant offers upscale spectacular water view dining on Maryland’s eastern shore.

Allaire du Pont was an aviation buff, and as a national glider champion set a women’s endurance record in 1935, soaring for five hours and 31 minutes. Legend has it she buzzed the Chesapeake City Bridge as part of her proficient skills and lifelong daredevil mentality. Today, visitors can view Allaire’s needlepoint-which graces the walls of the Bayard House, a hobby she took up to wean herself of a smoking habit. “If it was not for Allaire and her love of Chesapeake City, the town may not have been preserved and restored. Mrs. du Pont took it upon herself to see that the town was renovated and many of the buildings, which were falling apart, were restored. She was quite a woman,” explained Natalie Gentry, the Bayard House Restaurant Manager and town Ombudsman. du Pont’s needlepoint graces the walls of the restaurant.

A must stop is Canal Creamery, where Bella from Lancaster enjoyed a sweet taste of Kilby Cream’s farm fresh ice cream! Visit chesapeakecity.com for more information.

A must stop is Canal Creamery, where Bella from Lancaster enjoyed a sweet taste of Kilby Cream’s farm fresh ice cream! Visit chesapeakecity.com for more information.

The town itself is an ideal fall daycation-and a memorable weekend getaway. Downtown boasts charming and unique boutique after another, and distinct historic homes and buildings dating back to the 19th century. For the kid (in all of us) delicious farm fresh Kilby ice cream is a no-brainer at the Canal Creamery. “The town itself lends itself to such a great day trip from the Main Line. We have a wonderful museum, there are boat rides, and you can dine here on the canal on a beautiful day and sit outside. Giant ships pass through the canal and it can be very spectacular,” explained Gentry.

The Bayard House, circa 1835, also serves as a growing popular wedding venue, with accommodations up to 150 from April to October outside on the lawn looking out on the canal. “The cool thing about Chesapeake City for our brides that really draws them in, is that it turns out you have your own little town for your wedding. We’ve had a lot of brides from West Chester, South Jersey and the Main Line. It’s really a different wedding destination but at the same time it’s perfect because it lends itself to great pictures at Pell Gardens and a quaint feel. And, the guests have all the bed and breakfasts here to choose from. It’s a destination wedding that seems like you are so much further away than you really are, but it’s a hop, skip and a jump from the Main Line,” explained Gentry.

The town’s annual Ghost Walk is this weekend, Friday October 23rd and Saturday October 24th from 6-9p.m.Visitors can enjoy a spooky revolutionary tale told along a specified route of porch locations around town.

The town’s annual Ghost Walk is this weekend, Friday October 23rd and Saturday October 24th from 6-9p.m.Visitors can enjoy a spooky revolutionary tale told along a specified route of porch locations around town.

If you have not discovered the sleepy northern Maryland town of Chesapeake City, well, you are in for one fantastic treat. Chesapeake City is a romantic weekend away, a convenient fall daycation, or an excuse to explore one gorgeous town with family and friends. I can’t think of a better way to spend a beautiful, brisk October afternoon walking along the town’s quaint streets and soaking in the scenic C&D canal. Once you decide to experience this eastern shore gem, you will fall in love with Chesapeake City just as I have through the years. Safe travels!

DIRECTIONS TO CHESAPEAKE CITY, MARYLAND

From I-95 North:
I-95 South to Exit 896 South (Middletown-last exit before toll). 896 S. to Route 40 W. After crossing into Maryland, make a left turn at the fifth light, Route 213 S. Follow Route 213 S. Cross over Chesapeake & Delaware Canal Bridge. Continue under bridge to stop sign. Take a left on George Street into town.

From 1-95 South:
I-95 North to North East Exit #100. Bear to the right to 272 South. Make a left onto Route 40E. Make a right on Route 213 South. Follow 213 South. Cross over Chesapeake and Delaware Canal Bridge. Exit immediately to the right after crossing over the bridge. Continue back under the bridge to stop sign. Take a left on George Street into town.

Have a wonderful daycation/vacation spot that you would like AroundMainLine.com to cover? Send us your suggestions for across the Delaware Valley and beyond to: info@aroundmainline.com.

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A Longwood Gardens Christmas http://aroundmainline.com/happenings/a-longwood-gardens-christmas.html http://aroundmainline.com/happenings/a-longwood-gardens-christmas.html#respond Wed, 08 Dec 2010 16:06:35 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=1101 Dazzling floral displays, stunning trees, holiday music, 500,000 outdoor lights, and dancing fountains under the stars are just a few of the highlights of the popular display.

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By AML Publisher
Photos by Brittany Ostrov Photography

A Longwood Gardens Christmas runs through January 9, 2011.

A Longwood Gardens Christmas runs through January 9, 2011.

A Christmas fantasy awaits guests to Longwood Gardens near Kennett Square, PA, November 25, 2010 through January 9, 2011. Dazzling floral displays, stunning trees, holiday music, 500,000 outdoor lights, and dancing fountains under the stars are just a few of the highlights of the popular display A Longwood Gardens Christmas. Timed tickets are advised, with tickets issued for specific dates and times. Timed tickets are available now and can be purchased online at www.longwoodgardens.org, or in person at Longwood.

Inside Longwood’s 4.5-acre heated Conservatory thousands of poinsettias accented with amaryllis, Narcissus, begonias, cyclamen, lilies and hydrangea flourish. Elegantly decorated trees shimmer and sparkle with festive flair. In Longwood’s Exhibition Hall, an ornate art nouveau tapestry fashioned from live pink poinsettias and ferns surround a towering 25-foot Douglas fir adorned in raspberry and pink ornaments, preserved pink roses and gilded cones.

The Orangery’s center walkway is resplendent in pink poinsettias and blue coleus accented with paper whites, alyssum and bay laurel.

The East Conservatory hosts traditional red, green and silver Christmas hues, featuring red cyclamen, begonias, Artemisia, Serbian spruce, lilies and more. A towering 28-foot Douglas fir, the largest indoor tree in the display, draws all eyes to the Patio of Oranges where it is dressed with begonias and red glass ornaments.

More than 500,000 outdoor lights adorning 75 trees in classical and free-style form styles enchant both young and old.

More than 500,000 outdoor lights adorning 75 trees in classical and free-style form styles enchant both young and old.

More horticultural finery, including swags of exotic plants, Christmas cactus baskets, living wreaths, and decorated trees flourish throughout the Conservatory.

Longwood works its holiday magic outdoors, too. More than 500,000 outdoor lights adorning 75 trees in classical and free-style form styles enchant both young and old. The lighting extravaganza (the cords for which would span 39 miles) includes the illumination of two of Longwood’s Treehouses. Fountains dance day and night to holiday music in the Open Air Theatre (weather permitting) beneath glimmering starry snowflakes. Young and old will delight in Longwood’s outdoor train display nestled near the Idea Garden. Natural edible ornaments adorn the Wildlife Tree created especially for Longwood’s feathered and furry friends. The Gardener’s Tree features ornaments crafted from garden findings, including gourds, seedpods, and cones.

Longwood captures the magic of the season—and the music—with holiday concerts, organ sing-alongs and carillon performances. The ornate Ballroom is the setting for daily organ sing-alongs on Longwood’s renovated 10,010-pipe Aeolian organ. Evening choral and bell choir concerts at 7 pm and 8 pm feature favorite area groups, including:

Enjoy Breakfast with Santa on December 11, 12, 18 and 19 in Longwood’s Terrace Restaurant at 8:00 and 9:30 am.

Enjoy Breakfast with Santa on December 11, 12, 18 and 19 in Longwood’s Terrace Restaurant at 8:00 and 9:30 am.

Enjoy Breakfast with Santa on December 11, 12, 18 and 19 in Longwood’s Terrace Restaurant at 8:00 and 9:30 am. An array of breakfast items that are sure to please the entire family await Reservations are required and prices include Gardens admission. Ages 12 & over $40, ages 5-11 $22; Ages 4 and under, free. Pricing for Garden Pass Members are ages 12 and older: $32; ages 5-11: $18. On New Year’s Eve, Longwood will remain open until 10 pm with special festive activities for the entire family. Find fun around every corner with strolling performances by carolers, and a barbershop quartet. Families will enjoy a balloon artist, a kids’ craft station and more! A spectacular 5-minute fireworks display tops off the fun at 8:30 pm. Activities begin at 3 pm.

In anticipation of the popularity of A Longwood Gardens Christmas, admission will be by Timed Ticket, with tickets issued for specific dates and times.
A Longwood Gardens Christmas runs November 25–January 9, 9 am to 9 pm. Timed Tickets allow entry during half-hour intervals throughout the day, from 9 am to 8:30 pm Longwood will remain open until 10 pm on Saturdays and December 26-31. Timed Tickets are on sale now at www.longwoodgardens.org or in person at Longwood.
General Admission prices are $18 for adults; $15 for seniors (age 62+), $8 for students (ages 5-18) free age 4 and under. Complete information is available online at www.longwoodgardens.org.

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Buzz: Fall Family Events at Dutch Wonderland http://aroundmainline.com/happenings/buzz-fall-family-events-at-dutch-wonderland.html http://aroundmainline.com/happenings/buzz-fall-family-events-at-dutch-wonderland.html#respond Tue, 21 Sep 2010 15:46:33 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=1003 Lancaster’s Dutch Wonderland has a fun group of fall activities for local families to enjoy.

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By AML Publisher
Photos courtesy of Heather Berkenstock, Belle Vie Photography

On September 25 and 26, Dutch Wonderland will celebrate Princess Brooke’s love of reading with special appearances by such favorite children’s books characters as the Cat in the Hat, Corduroy the Bear, Frog and Toad, and more.

On September 25 and 26, Dutch Wonderland will celebrate Princess Brooke’s love of reading with special appearances by such favorite children’s books characters as the Cat in the Hat, Corduroy the Bear, Frog and Toad, and more.

Many families might think of Dutch Wonderland as a popular summer destination in Lancaster County. But, coming up this fall are a bunch of great seasonal activities planned to enjoy. From Readers’ Jamboree that embraces the parks commitment to childhood literacy, to Fall Farm Days and Happy Hauntings, the three special events offer plenty of affordable and festive entertainment.

Bethany Alwan is the Senior Director, Branded Operations for Dutch Wonderland Family Entertainment Complex. “We are really open almost 8 to 9 months of the year which many people might not realize. One of the most popular fall events is, of course, Happy Hauntings where we have a lot of fun embracing a Halloween theme. We transform the park so that the merry-go-round becomes the Scareeeee-Go-Round, Roller Ghoasters, and the Trick or Treat Trail. It’s a family-friendly Halloween themed event but its not overly scary so the little ones will enjoy it as well,” explained Alwan.

Upcoming Events at Dutch Wonderland

Readers’ Jamboree at Dutch Wonderland Celebrates Literacy
Dates: September 25th and 26th

For the third year in a row, Dutch Wonderland was voted among the Top Five Best Children’s Parks in the World in Amusement Today’s 2010 Golden Ticket Awards.

For the third year in a row, Dutch Wonderland was voted among the Top Five Best Children’s Parks in the World in Amusement Today’s 2010 Golden Ticket Awards.

On September 25 and 26, Dutch Wonderland will celebrate Princess Brooke’s love of reading with special appearances by such favorite children’s books characters as the Cat in the Hat, Corduroy the Bear, Frog and Toad, Llama Llama in Red Pajamas, Pig from If You Give a Pig a Pancake, and Skippy Jon Jones. Other special entertainment for the day includes performances by children’s musician Bruce Fite and Superreader. All activities associated with Readers’ Jamboree are free with paid Park admission.

To further support the Park’s commitment to literacy, there will be a book drive to benefit the “Reach Out and Read” program, a national non-profit organization that promotes early literacy by giving new books to children in pediatric exam rooms across the nation. Guests ages 12 and under who donate a children’s book to the book drive will receive one free ticket to Dutch Winter Wonderland, a family-friendly holiday event at Dutch Wonderland. There is a limit of one ticket per person per donation.

Come Down to the Farm at Dutch Wonderland
Dates: October 2nd and 3rd

On October 2 and 3, families can experience life on a farm with Fall Farm Days at Dutch Wonderland. Guests can celebrate fall, farming and harvest with music and educational booths all weekend long.
Highlights include:

  • Tiger Tom musical performances
  • Scarecrow building
  • Square dancing with Do Pas O Square Dancers
  • Favorite farm animals from Eastland Alpacas and Melody-Lawn Farms Dairy Cows
  • Fall food sampling from Kegel’s Produce, Oregon Dairy and Turkey Hill

Happy Hauntings Brings Friendly, Ghoulish Fun to Dutch Wonderland
Dates: October 16-17, October 23-24, and October 30-31

Now in its 13th year, Happy Hauntings features more than 20 themed rides, including the “Scareeeee-Go-Round,” the “Bat Swing” and the “Witchie Whip.”

Now in its 13th year, Happy Hauntings features more than 20 themed rides, including the “Scareeeee-Go-Round,” the “Bat Swing” and the “Witchie Whip.”

Enjoy hauntingly friendly fun that’s ideal for families at Happy Hauntings at Dutch Wonderland. Now in its 13th year, Happy Hauntings features more than 20 themed rides, including the “Scareeeee-Go-Round,” the “Bat Swing,” and the “Witchie Whip.” Guests also can trick-or-treat, paint a pumpkin, play ghoulish games and enjoy spine-tingling treats. Entertainment for Happy Hauntings includes magic shows, and storytelling with the Princess and Knight of Dutch Wonderland. Returning this year is the “Trick-or-Treat Trail.” Duke’s Lagoon will be transformed into a hauntingly good time for all trick-or-treaters, and guests can make their way through 10 stops along the trail for candy and other surprises. Special trick-or-treat bags will be available at both the front gate and the beginning of the trail.

Every Sunday night at 6:30 p.m., families can participate in a special costume contest that offers prizes for the Spookiest Costume, Most Creative Costume, Best Book/Movie/TV Character, Best Homemade Costume and Best Pair/Family Participation. The costume contests are sponsored by AAA Central Penn. Happy Hauntings is open October 16-17, October 23-24, and October 30-31 from 3 to 9 p.m. Admission is $19.95 per person. Parking is free.

Dutch Wonderland hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The event is open rain or shine. Admission prices are $31.95 for Royalty (ages 3-59), $26.95 for Senior Royalty (ages 60-69) and $19.95 for Senior Plus Royalty (ages 70 and over). Royalty-In-Training (ages 2 and under) are free. For more information about Dutch Wonderland Family Entertainment Complex and its related attractions, please call 1-866-FUNatDW or visit DutchWonderland.com.

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Mother’s Day Events Around Philadelphia http://aroundmainline.com/living/mother%e2%80%99s-day-events-around-philadelphia.html http://aroundmainline.com/living/mother%e2%80%99s-day-events-around-philadelphia.html#respond Sun, 02 May 2010 17:46:00 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=892 AML finds eight ways to spend the week with mom around the Main Line and Philly region as Mother’s Day approaches.

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By AML Publisher
Featured photography courtesy of Belle Vie Photography

Chesapeake City, Maryland oozes with old world charm, quaint shops, gorgeous gardens and great dining. It’s a great daycation spot with mom and less than a 90 minute drive from the heart of the Main Line. Photo courtesy of Jubilee Photography

Chesapeake City, Maryland oozes with old world charm, quaint shops, gorgeous gardens and great dining. It’s a great daycation spot with mom and less than a 90 minute drive from the heart of the Main Line. Photo courtesy of Jubilee Photography

1) Chesapeake City, Maryland
www.chesapeakecity.com
Read our full story on Chesapeake City

Quaint, historic and charming Chesapeake City, Maryland-located in Cecil County-is a short and beautiful drive from Philly’s western suburbs. It is one wonderful daycation for a very deserving mom in your life! Chesapeake City’s historic area is on the National Historic Registry, as well as Maryland’s Historic Registry. The town has many restored historic homes, shops and galleries, featuring hand-painted originals and prints, antiques, collectibles, clothing, gifts and crafts.

Boasting a bevy of B&Bs, it’s a perfect getaway for mom and daughters or sisters for the holiday weekend. The town’s holiday dining spot for Mom’s Day is, without doubt, the Bayard House.The restaurant serves award-winning crab soup, tournedos Baltimore, and a breathtaking tableside view of the famous Chesapeake and Delaware Canal (C&D Canal), one of only two vital sea-level canals in the United States.

Additional sites include the Canal Museum, art galleries, summer concerts, boat tours, and tours of the nearby horse country. Convenient to several large cities on the east coast, this historic village on the banks of the C&D Canal is a favorite spot for those seeking a weekend getaway or a vacation retreat.

The Michener Museum’s exhibit ‘Icons of Costume: Hollywood’s Golden Era and Beyond’ is sure to delight mom.  In the spirit of the exhibition, the museum is holding a fashion and accessories trunk show spotlighting regional artisans and their work on Saturday, May 8.  Photo courtesy of Belle Vie Photography

The Michener Museum’s exhibit ‘Icons of Costume: Hollywood’s Golden Era and Beyond’ is sure to delight mom. In the spirit of the exhibition, the museum is holding a fashion and accessories trunk show spotlighting regional artisans and their work on Saturday, May 8. Photo courtesy of Belle Vie Photography

2) The Michener Museum
Fashion and Accessories Trunk Show
Saturday, May 8th 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission: Free
Doylestown, PA
michenerartmuseum.org

Mother’s Day in Doylestown will not disappoint! In addition to the dozens of fantastic shops and dining spots downtown, the Michener Museum boasts an exciting new exhibit that opened on April 17th—Icons of Costume: Hollywood’s Golden Era and Beyond. Icons presents over 50 items selected from one of the most extensive collections of movie memorabilia ranging from Marlene Dietrich’s black velvet evening gown from Shanghai Express (1932) to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s black leather jacket from Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991).

In the spirit of the exhibition, which runs through September 5th, the James A. Michener Art Museum’s Denoon Shop presents a Fashion and Accessories Trunk Show spotlighting regional artisans and their work on Saturday, May 8 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Locally made jewelry, scarves, coats, hats and more are available for purchase with proceeds supporting the Museum and its community programs.

3) Longwood Gardens
Kennett Square, PA
Saturday May 8th, Sunday May 9th
9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
www.longwoodgardens.org
Twitter: longwoodgardens

Give Mom the gift of a gorgeous tour of Longwood Gardens and a special fragrance to mark the day. Always in Bloom is the first signature fragrance for Longwood, debuting in conjunction with their exhibit Making Scents: The Art and Passion of Fragrance. The exhibit, which opened on April 10th and runs through November 21st, is the first major exhibition for one of the world’s leading horticultural centers.

More than 260 different Genera of aromatic plants and flowers have been added specifically for the exhibition, joining more than 5,500 types of plants from around the world already housed in the historic conservatory. The exhibition will trace key moments in the history of perfume, beginning with the earliest recorded Egyptian scent around 1800 B.C.E. and culminating with Coco Chanel’s release of No. 5 in 1921, the first perfume for the modern woman.

Longwood Gardens is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mother’s Day weekend offering special events throughout. In addition to acres of fragrant and colorful spring blossoms, Longwood offers mom a host of delights including music, fine dining and unique gifts in The Gardens Shop. Visit longwoodgardens.org for full details.

4) The Junior League of Philadelphia’s Main Line Shopping Event
Suburban Square, Ardmore
Wednesday, May 5th 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
www.suburbansquare.com
www.jlphiladelphia.org

Come celebrate Cinco de Mayo and shop for mom with The Junior League of Philadelphia! The JLP will be hosting a shopping benefit at Suburban Square in Ardmore on May 5 from 5-9 p.m. Proceeds from the event will benefit the nonprofit Junior League of Philadelphia and its Project GREEN: Using Nature to Nurture community programs. Tickets are $20 each and entitle the holder to a discount pass valid at participating Suburban Square stores. Tickets may be purchased on the JLP website or at the registration desk on the night of the event.

Pick up Mother’s Day gifts or shop for a fabulous new summer wardrobe. To view a complete list of participating stores or to learn more about membership in the Junior League, please visit jlphiladelphia.org.

Nannygoat Antiques is part of the stores participating in the sidewalk sale in downtown Narberth. Photo courtesy of Belle Vie Photography

Nannygoat Antiques is part of the stores participating in the sidewalk sale in downtown Narberth. Photo courtesy of Belle Vie Photography

5) Narberth Sidewalk Sale and Circus
May 6th, 7th and 8th
narberthonline.com

Narberth has a full weekend of fun activities planned this Mother’s Day weekend, with three days of Spring Sidewalk Sale, and three Saturday circus performances! The action kicks off with music and street food, 6pm Thursday, May 6, at Forrest and Haverford Ave. Right around the corner, the Narberth Avenue shops “On the Hill” are giving away free dessert.

The shops of Narberth take to the sidewalks all day Friday and Saturday, and many have crafts, specials, and fun, family activities planned for Saturday afternoon. There will be music all day Saturday, and an 11:30 AM performance by the DanceXpress dancers at the train station circle. From Noon to 4pm Saturday, you can catch a ride on the “Narberth Local”, two trackless trains running between Downtown Narberth and the Circus at Narberth Park. Circus performances are Saturday, May 8, at 1pm, 4:30pm and 7:30pm. Tickets are available for $8 at the tent or in advance at the Library and the Borough Office. Call 610-664-2840.

Take mom to Manayunk for dining and shopping!Be sure to stop in Molly Cygan’s popular The Little Apple store on Main Street, across from La Colombe coffee, for free champagne and adorable gift ideas.  Photo courtesy of Courtney Apple

Take mom to Manayunk for dining and shopping!Be sure to stop in Molly Cygan’s popular The Little Apple store on Main Street, across from La Colombe coffee, for free champagne and adorable gift ideas. Photo courtesy of Courtney Apple

6) Manayunk Loves Mom!
May 8th and May 9th
www.manayunk.com

‘Manayunk loves Mom!’ is the special weekend of activities, discounts and complimentary gifts retail owners will be offering shoppers and diners May 8th and May 9th. Among the cool kudos in store for moms dining over the weekend in Manayunk: Kildare’s will offer mom a complimentary pint and Mango Moon will serve mom complimentary champagne and a chef’s specialty appetizer. Over a dozen retailers will offer discounts and gifts with purchase. Speaking of gifts, Manayunk’s hot new retail space The Little Apple is the must-stop in the Yunk to grab a great, affordable gift for mom. For a full list of the specials and participating stores, visit Manayunk.com.

7) Please Touch Museum’s Spring Strings
May 7th to 10th
Mother’s Day Hours: 11.am. to 5 p.m.
Moms get free general admission for Mother’s Day Weekend
www.pleasetouch.org

The Please Touch Museum will be tuning its strings in anticipation for the Spring String celebration! Come and enjoy the musical styles of Ann Goering and Brian Rafter while they play a number of different stringed instruments around the museum, including upright bass, bowed psaltery, autoharp, guitar, violin, and viola. Little maestros can also try their hands at a ukulele, hammerete, melody harp, and child-sized upright harp and guitar in our Program Room. Mom will get free general admission for Mother’s Day Weekend.

Adventure Aquarium has a fantastic week of activities planned. On Saturday, meet your favorite NBC10 personalities up close and in person at Adventure Aquarium!  Photo courtesy of Off the Leash Portraits

Adventure Aquarium has a fantastic week of activities planned. On Saturday, meet your favorite NBC10 personalities up close and in person at Adventure Aquarium! Photo courtesy of Off the Leash Portraits

8) Adventure Aquarium and NBC10 Day
Saturday May 8th 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
adventureaquarium.com
Twitter: AdventureAqua

In celebration of Mother’s Day, Adventure Aquarium and NBC 10 invite you to celebrate the women in your lives by giving the gift of adventure. On Saturday, May 8, meet your favorite NBC 10 personalities up close and in person at Adventure Aquarium! All moms will receive a complimentary flower (while supplies last) and, from 10 am to 2pm, guests can meet renowned members of the NBC 10 team, who will be on-hand to greet guests, sign autographs, and perform in Adventure Aquariums live shows.

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The Blue Max Inn http://aroundmainline.com/living/the-blue-max-inn.html http://aroundmainline.com/living/the-blue-max-inn.html#respond Wed, 11 Nov 2009 20:49:36 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=667 The quaint Maryland town oozes with charm…and one of the best places to hunker down for a romantic weekend is the beautiful B&B known as The Blue Max Inn.

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By AML Publisher
Photos Courtesy of Jubilee Photography

Christine Mullen, Blue Max’s Inn beautiful and charming Inn Keeper, will make your stay in Chesapeake City memorable.

Christine Mullen, Blue Maxs Inn beautiful and charming Inn Keeper, will make your stay in Chesapeake City memorable.

Christine Mullen always loved the Blue Max Inn and was involved in the banquet and bridal industry for years in Maryland’s Cecil County. When she found out the owners of the Inn were putting the gorgeous historic house on the market, in 2004, she quickly took the chance for her dream job. Today, Mullen is the proud owner and innkeeper of one of Chesapeake City, Maryland’s four beautiful Bed and Breakfasts. “People come from Philadelphia all the time and always say to me, ‘This is the best kept secret, we had no idea this great town was here.’ I think Chesapeake City evokes the charm of a European village because we have the (C&D) canal so we see the large ships going through; we have a beautiful historic district, fantastic shops and great dining. It really is such a wonderful place for me to call home and welcome my guests,” said Mullen.

The Blue Max Inn started as a B&B in 1990. The house was built in 1854 and was once owned by renowned writer Jack Hunter who penned the runaway best-selling novel, “The Blue Max.” Hunter was a well respected and well liked man in the Chesapeake City community. The book was made into a movie in 1966 with George Peppard (best known for his role in the ‘80s hit television show The A Team) as the lead role, and costars Ursula Andress and James Mason. Mullen has a vintage movie catalog, with Peppard on the cover, on a breakfast nook to display to guests.

One of the cozy bedrooms the Inn boasts. The rooms rent for $150-$300 a night, depending on the season. There are plenty of fall and holiday activities on the horizon in Chesapeake City.

One of the cozy bedrooms the Inn boasts. The rooms rent for $150-$300 a night, depending on the season. There are plenty of fall and holiday activities on the horizon in Chesapeake City.

Known affectionately across town as “the house with generous porches,” the Blue Max also boasts Chesapeake City’s ‘most photographed man’, Max. Max is large, impending, albeit friendly looking ceramic pirate statue that stands guard from the top balcony. “When I bought the Inn, I found Max (my mascot) in a shop in Florida and shipped him up here. I knew he was the perfect touch! And, he is quite the conversation piece. You certainly can’t miss him when you arrive in town and drive by,” explained Mullen.

Mullen boasts a strong marketing background. Via her website, BlueMaxInn.com, she offers online gift certificates which are popular in the fall with the seasonal activities the town plans. Christine also works hard to come up with creative ideas and fun adventures to keep her guests coming back and the pipeline of new customers growing. In the winter, her now popular Blue Max Inn Murder Mystery Weekends are a big hit. Think of a modern day version of ‘Clue’ with up to twenty strangers converging on the Inn for a weekend with unknown outcomes. “It’s a total hoot. People really get into the murder mystery weekends. A week before they come to Blue Max, everyone receives their instructions and character in the mail. I have guests arrive in full character and garb on Friday evening! Others, of course, it takes a bit of time for them to warm up. By Saturday evening, after we have a fun cocktail hour, someone has been murdered and then we go to dinner as a group and have some conversation, try to figure out the winner,” explained Mullen. At dinner at The Bayard House just down the road, the murderer is revealed and prizes are awarded to those who ‘cracked the case’ successfully.

The Blue Max Inn is frequently referred to as the Inn with the “generous porches.”

The Blue Max Inn is frequently referred to as the Inn with the “generous porches.”

Mullen has a loyal following of return guests who make the short drive from the Main Line and Philadelphia suburbs. Another portion of her clientèle come up from Baltimore, and to stay for the night in Chesapeake City after a tour of the nearby Brandywine Valley. The Inn is spacious-with seven luxurious rooms and two suites-all with private baths. There are four relaxing porches, charming décor, fireplaces and whirlpool tubs.

With the rich culture and community of Chesapeake City offering monthly activities, Mullen said guests are steady at The Blue Max year round. She admits running your own B&B is a tremendous amount of work but says the experience of owning a business she admired from afar for years is very rewarding. “This is a tough job doing it all yourself, but I absolutely love it. The best part of having your own bed and breakfast is that you meet the nicest people. Because your average person (who is not social) will go to a hotel. But, it’s a certain clientèle who chooses the experience of a B&B. And, I love the chance to meet my guests and welcome them into the beautiful Blue Max Inn experience.”

Guests of the Inn looking for a delicious dinner can walk about a block to the Bayard House, which overlooks the C& D canal.  Pictured is one of their most popular entrees, Tournedos Baltimore.

Guests of the Inn looking for a delicious dinner can walk about a block to the Bayard House, which overlooks the C& D canal. Pictured is one of their most popular entrees, Tournedos Baltimore.

The Blue Max Inn, Chesapeake City, MD

RATES: $135-$300/per night ($150-160 average, $300 a night peak season)

WEBSITE: www.bluemaxinn.com

UPCOMING MURDER MYSTERY WEEKENDS:
January 1st & 2nd – Roaring Twenties Rub Out
February 5th & 6th – Four Duces
March 26th & 27 – Murder at Chesapeake High

SCRUMPTIOUS BREAKFAST: Mullen’s specialty for her lucky guests when they come down to enjoy breakfast is her baked ham and cheese croissants, which are accented with a little bit of orange marmalade, dipped in egg wash and baked in the oven for ten to fifteen minutes. Christine also whips up delicious eggs Benedict, Mimosas (on request), fresh coffee, great company and more.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN CHESAPEAKE CITY

Visit chesapeakecity.com and check under their activities calendar at the top left of page for ongoing event details.

Pet Parade with Santa: Saturday November 21st
An annual event always the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Details online (chesapeakecity.com activities calendar) pending

The Inn’s official mascot is Max, known as the ‘most photographed man’ in Chesapeake City. Mullen found Max in Florida soon after she purchased Blue Max and thought he would make the perfect accent to the Inn’s striking façade.

The Inn’s official mascot is Max, known as the ‘most photographed man’ in Chesapeake City. Mullen found Max in Florida soon after she purchased Blue Max and thought he would make the perfect accent to the Inn’s striking façade.

Festive Christmas Tea w/Lunch: Saturday December 5th
Catch the Christmas Spirit in Chesapeake City in a 250-year-old Farmhouse full of tradition!
11:00am – 2:00pm
Location: Sinking Springs Herb Farm and Retreat
www.sinkingsprings.com
Phone: 410.398.5566

Two sittings: 11:00 am to 12:30 pm and 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm. Reservation required. $18.00 each

Candlelight House & Walking Tour- Saturday December 12th
An annual event always the 2nd Saturday in December

Self guided walking tour of private homes, churches and bed and breakfasts decorated for the holiday season. Carriage rides and Victorian carolers add special ambiance for the event.
6:00pm – 9:00pm

Advance sale ticket available from 11/01/2009 to 12/11/2009 will be $10. Tickets on the day of will go on sale at 4:00PM in Town Hall and will be $15. Rain, snow or shine. Call Mary at 410-885-5995 or 443-553-0071.

To make reservations or inquire about availability at The Blue Max Inn, contact Christine Mullen at 410-885-2781 or toll free at 877-725-8362 (410) 885-2781 Toll free 1-877-725-8362. You can also visit the website at bluemaxinn.com. Online gift certificates are also available. The Blue Max Inn has year round events and specials for her guests, including her popular murder mystery weekends.

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Wine and a Feline http://aroundmainline.com/food/wine-and-a-feline.html http://aroundmainline.com/food/wine-and-a-feline.html#respond Wed, 03 Jun 2009 17:35:01 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=493 In anticipation of the 19th annual Pennsylvania Wine and Food Festival, AML highlights Chalfont’s Peace Valley Winery and discovers the lure of a beloved vineyard mascot.

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By AML Publisher
Photography courtesy of April Ziegler Photography

A cozy winery hidden on a hilltop in Bucks County has much to offer Main Liners looking for a pleasant daycation this summer. Peace Valley Winery, Chalfont, PA

A cozy winery hidden on a hilltop in Bucks County has much to offer Main Liners looking for a pleasant daycation this summer.
Peace Valley Winery, Chalfont, PA

In 1967, Susan Gross was working as a chemist, rubbing elbows with horticulturists and thinking about her next career move. A country winery was not on her radar. But, before she knew it, Gross was a proud owner of a bare stretch of cornfield in quaint Chalfont, Pennsylvania. She had never been on a tractor in her life. As many first time entrepreneurs do, Gross went with a gut feeling-experimented with her new piece of property and planted three acres of wine grapes along with a large experimental plot of hybrids from France and Germany.

Seventeen years later, Peace Valley Winery opened (in 1984) with Robert Kolmus as a partner. Today, Peace Valley is a quaint, country winery in the heart of Bucks County farmland with over twenty acres dedicated to over two dozen varieties of grapes. “Our philosophy is one of a laidback approach. We are certainly not wine snobs out here at Peace Valley. We are a working farm and small town vineyard, and our loyal customers prefer us to the state store brands-because we have great wines and they can support a local business” Gross explained.

Each season there seems to be something on the harvest for wine lovers to enjoy at Peace Valley. In the spring, Peace Valley rolls out their well known Spring Fling, based on the German style of spring wines that have a secondary form of fermentation or additional ‘spritz.’ It’s flavored with an herb called woodruff, with its sprigs used to sweeten the batch. Gross serves Spring Fling in a punch bowl at the winery (for lucky guests) and adds frozen strawberries to the mix to keep the wine cold and refreshing-while allowing the strawberries to release their natural flavors.

Starting June 5th through the 7th, Peace Valley will release their Summer Solstice wine, one of their most popular in their selection. “It’s sweet and fruity and comes in a very attractive blue bottle. So many people anticipate the release of our Summer Solstice to put aside as a great holiday gift. It has wide appeal,” explained Gross. And, in the fall, Peace Valley offers a ‘pick your own’ event where visitors can select their own grapes in the sprawling fields. For families, the property is also home to several acres of dwarf apple trees which bring in large crowds come harvest time.

The ever illusive and legendary Moe has become part of the vineyard experience with regulars of Peace Valley.

The ever illusive and legendary Moe has become part of the vineyard experience with regulars of Peace Valley.

Gross is proud of the selection and quality of her wines that keeps regulars coming back, part of a loyal family of local fans and vineyard enthusiasts. “We have a very interesting and wide selection of wines. Our chardonnay is one of our most popular, it’s a Chablis style that has been fermented in very cold temperatures and is very light with lots of fruit flavors and very little oak. It sets us apart from other chardonnays,” explained Gross.

The cozy winery sits high on a hidden hilltop overlooking Peace Valley Park. Besides a stop at Peace Valley, which offers a satisfying daycation for suburbanites, this pristine pocket of Bucks County countryside is packed with other must-sees. Down the road from the winery is a lush lavender farm, a bike trail, a 365-acre lake where people can sail or take an eight-mile hike, a quaint country farm market and the historic Pearl Buck House. “It’s really quite a day trip to come out this way! So many of our first time guests are so pleasantly surprised when they see what is here in this region of Chalfont-it really is ‘God’s country,’” said Gross.

Part of the great appeal of Peace Valley is the resident feline, Moe. Moe’s adventures in and around the winery are well-known by regulars and documented in monthly e-newsletters. Through the years, his squabbles with winery visitors (other cats, an opossum or two) have done their damage on his battle-worn ears. “Everyone always wants to know what Moe is up to! He is quite the cat and came to us with two brothers from a stray that was hanging around. Moe is a survivor-he had two brothers, Manny and Jack, who have since passed. Moe seems to have a certain je ne sais quoi that draws people in,” explained Gross.

Peace Valley is one of thirty-six wineries participating in the 19th annual Great Tastes of Pennsylvania Wine and Food Festival, June 13th and 14th at Split Rock Lodge in the Poconos. Visit splitrockresort.com for full details.

Peace Valley is one of thirty-six wineries participating in the 19th annual Great Tastes of Pennsylvania Wine and Food Festival, June 13th and 14th at Split Rock Lodge in the Poconos. Visit splitrockresort.com for full details.

Peace Valley will also be one of the thirty plus Pennsylvania wineries participating in the 19th annual PA Wine and Food Festival coming up on June 13th and 14th at Split Rock Lodge in the Poconos. For wine lovers across the tri-state region, it’s a golden opportunity to conveniently sample some of the best wines the state has to offer. “We have been a loyal part of the festival since its inception and would not miss it for the world! There is nothing else like it for wine enthusiasts across the state of Pennsylvania. Instead of traveling hundreds of miles to visit and sample all of the amazing wines that these vineyards offer, wine lovers can spend the weekend at Split Rock and have them all in one convenient location. There’s a great sense of camaraderie among the industry as well, so for us as a small vineyard, it’s a reunion of sorts with all of our Pennsylvania vineyard friends,” enthused Gross.

Great Tastes of Pennsylvania Wine and Food Festival

When: Saturday & Sunday, June 13th & 14th 12pm-6pm

Event Details: Thirty-six wineries across the state will be on hand providing educational seminars throughout the weekend. The festival will feature continuous musical entertainment on three separate stages, Pennsylvania’s finest wineries and a wide selection of food vendors to tempt your taste buds. Split Rock also offers a weekend package for our overnight guests. Each Festival attendee will receive a commemorative wine tasting glass, and you must be over 21 to be served. Pets are not allowed on festival grounds.

Website: www.splitrockresort.com/wine-festival.php

Cost: Advance Tickets $25/Group (25+) $22/Day of Festival $29Attendees Under 21 $6/Children 2 and Under are Free

For more information on the festival or for reservations, call 800-255-7625 or log on to www.splitrockresort.com

Peace Valley Winery will be exhibiting at the 2009 PA Wine and Food Festival. Their winery is located at 300 Old Limekiln Road, in Chalfont, PA. If you are interested in tour information or contacting Peace Valley Winery, call 215-249-9058, email peacevalwinery@enter.net, or visit their website at: www.peacevalleywinery.com.


Peace Valley Winery is less than an hour drive from the heart of the Main Line, approximately sixteen miles off the 309 exit from the PA Turnpike.

Hours of operation are: Wed-Fri & Sun 12-6pm, Sat 10-6pm

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Sendak on Sendak http://aroundmainline.com/living/sendak-on-sendak.html http://aroundmainline.com/living/sendak-on-sendak.html#respond Fri, 01 May 2009 20:30:17 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=427 In honor of Philadelphia’s first Museum Week, AML celebrates the final run of famed children’s author and illustrator Maurice Sendak’s exhibit, There’s a Mystery There: Sendak on Sendak, at Philadelphia’s Rosenbach Museum.

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By AML Publisher
Photos courtesy of Kevin E. McPherson
Drawings published with permission of The Rosenbach Museum, Philadelphia

A total of over 300 original watercolors, pen-and-ink sketches, doodles, manuscripts, books, and dummy books from the 1950s to today are displayed at The Rosenbach. Visitors can access new interviews with Maurice Sendak through digital touchscreens throughout the galleries.

A total of over 300 original watercolors, pen-and-ink sketches, doodles, manuscripts, books, and dummy books from the 1950s to today are displayed at The Rosenbach. Visitors can access new interviews with Maurice Sendak through digital touchscreens throughout the galleries.

Most people recognize famed illustrator and author Maurice Sendak for his work in Where the Wild Things Are, In The Night Kitchen and Chicken Soup. But Sendak’s amazing talents have graced the pages of 105 additional books besides the famed trio. This week the year long exhibit of Sendak’s work at Philly’s Rosenbach Museum has its final curtain call. There’s a Mystery There: Sendak on Sendak is a retrospective that encompasses four comprehensive galleries in the museum. Director Spike Jonze will be releasing his version of Where the Wild Things Are in an upcoming 2009 fall film adaptation of the same name. The film is written by Jonze and Dave Eggers.

There’s a Mystery There focuses on Sendak’s personality as a storyteller engaging with difficult and mysterious themes and memories in his work. It explores Sendak’s prolific imagination through the characters, influences, and settings of his books, as well as Sendak’s quest to illustrate what he calls “the Other Story,” the hidden meanings of a text that haunt and enrich his illustrations.

Sendak selected the Rosenbach Museum & Library to be the repository for his work in the early 1970s thanks to shared literary and collecting interests. His collection of nearly 10,000 works of art, manuscripts, books and ephemera, has been the subject of many exhibitions at the Rosenbach, seen by visitors of all ages. The Rosenbach currently houses all of Sendak’s original illustrations for his books along with 3,500 works of art and an additional collection of 7,000 pieces of sketches and materials and manuscripts from the artist.

This week is also the inaugural Philadelphia Museum Week, with over fifty regional museums participating. There are a wide variety of discounts available on admission and museum store purchases- including at The Rosenbach-from now through Sunday, May 3rd. Patrick Rodgers is the traveling exhibitions coordinator at the museum and recently guided AML through the extraordinary Sendak exhibit and its fascinating galleries.

Gallery One: Sendak and His Kids

The Rosenbach has rotated the thousands of documents as part of the Sendak exhibit every four months since last May, making for a juggernaut of an exhibition. The fragile collection is particularly susceptible to light damage and the museum has to preserve the pieces forever. In addition, the exhibit is organized by four distinct rooms that cover Sendak’s main topics: kids, monsters, storytelling and settings. “We wanted to break down where Sendak finds mystery in his stories by themes that were as easy as possible because we know that there can be so many layered meanings in his children’s books, it can be a lot to chew on. Since we did rotate this exhibit, we also need to make it very flexible as well,” explained Rodgers.

Final drawing for Where the Wild Things Are, written by Maurice Sendak.  Pen and ink, watercolor.  © Maurice Sendak, 1963. All rights reserved.

Final drawing for Where the Wild Things Are, written by Maurice Sendak. Pen and ink, watercolor. © Maurice Sendak, 1963. All rights reserved.

In Gallery One, there’s the most recognizable of all of Sendak’s children-an original, vibrant watercolor of Max from his 1963 classic Where the Wild Things Are as well as early sketches of Mickey from In The Night Kitchen and Pierre from Sendak’s Pierre. The author, now 80 and residing in rural Connecticut, sourced his inspiration for his young subjects out of his childhood in Brooklyn during the ‘30s, where many of his playmates were immigrants. “These children were in a time period where they were fiercely independent-as was Sendak-so that’s acknowledged through many of his characters and the reality he was drawing from,” said Rodgers.

In the early version of Where the Wild Things Are, Max’s character was originally named Johnnie and the character cried a pool of tears that transported him out of the fantasy land. Sendak drew from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, explained Rodgers, as well from impressionists such as Rembrandt and his family members. “The monsters in ‘Wild Things’ are actually exaggerated portraits of Sendak’s aunts and uncles that he grew up with. When he was a boy, Maurice’s Polish relatives were Jews who had fled from Europe during the time of World War I. They spoke Yiddish; their customs were vastly different than what he had grown up with—even though Sendak’s parents were Polish. And, they handled Sendak very roughly. They were ravenous for his mother’s cooking and he described them as having strange hairs coming out of their ears and noses. Sendak grew up to love those relatives, yet he never lost the idea of their ghastliness when he was a kid. Later in his life, those memories translated to the inspiration for the monsters,” explained Rodgers.

“That’s the best fun in all of this-the layers of meaning, the layers of storytelling”<br>-Maurice Sendak, August 2007

“That’s the best fun in all of this-the layers of meaning, the layers of storytelling”
-Maurice Sendak, August 2007

The intense relationship between parent and child is a common thread woven throughout many of Sendak’s works and food also plays a huge role in many books, including, most apparent, In the Night Kitchen. Throughout the exhibit, there are monitors where visitors can stop and listen to taped segments from exclusive interviews with Sendak from his New England home where the author goes into further detail about the complexities of his writing. “The Rosenbach has a relationship with Maurice Sendak that goes back more than forty years. And because of that, in addition to the comprehensive collection, Sendak’s voice has become the centerpiece of this show. And so we were able to do these interviews with him and incorporate them into the exhibit to add another dimension and really bring it to life,” explained Rodgers.

Gallery Two: Sendak and His Monsters

Gallery Two highlights some of Maurice’s darker materials and fiendish characters. The Holocaust weighed particularly on the mind of Sendak as a subject matter, with his relatives talking frequently about the persecution they had faced in Europe. “An entire side of his father’s family perished during the Holocaust, and Sendak was acutely aware of this as a young child. So he had heard stories about their experience, viewed photographs and interacted with the Jewish community of Brooklyn. For Maurice, this was horrific,” said Rodgers.

The other sinister event that shaped Sendak’s career was the famed Lindbergh baby kidnapping and murder in May of 1932. Only four-years-old at the time, Sendak and his family were sent into a full panic, as was a large portion of the country, when famed aviator Charles Lindberg’s son was kidnapped and later found in a shallow grave. “One thing you will find in Maurice’s work is kidnapping characters. And, he is, in essence, exorcising the demons of these childhood memories through these personalities he has created,” explained Rodgers.

Final drawing for Outside Over There, by Maurice Sendak. Pencil, pen and ink, watercolor.  Ridgefield, Connecticut, ca. 1978.  © Maurice Sendak, 1978. All rights reserved. Maurice Sendak has a keen fascination with the Lindberg baby kidnapping, a childhood memory that brought much fear into the Sendak home. In his final drawing for Outside Over There, the grim reapers at the window are his nod to the famed murder mystery.

Final drawing for Outside Over There, by Maurice Sendak. Pencil, pen and ink, watercolor. Ridgefield, Connecticut, ca. 1978. © Maurice Sendak, 1978. All rights reserved. Maurice Sendak has a keen fascination with the Lindberg baby kidnapping, a childhood memory that brought much fear into the Sendak home. In his final drawing for Outside Over There, the grim reapers at the window are his nod to the famed murder mystery.

Sendak’s Outside Over There is part of what the author grouped as a trilogy (‘Wild Things’ and In The Night Kitchen are the first two parts) because he felt these books all related back to his childhood and upbringing. In ‘Outside’, the heroine, Ida, has a little sister who was kidnapped by goblins-and it is up to Ida to find her baby sister and keep her from becoming a goblin’s bride. The book has eerie scenes and a ghostlike quality. Outside Over There is illustrated in a style that is radically different than Sendak’s other works. “There is a Victorian room and soft, calming pastel colors but at the window are these faceless goblins waiting at the window on a ladder to steal the baby in the nursery. So, it’s working in his fascination with the Lindbergh kidnapping,” said Rodgers.

The character of Brundibar is Sendak’s most horrible monster, a not so subtle reference to Adolph Hitler. In the late ‘30s, just about the time Hitler was menacing Czechoslovakia, Jewish Czech composer Hans Krasa composed a children’s opera called Brundibar. Sendak illustrated the children’s book version of Brundibar that was written by Tony Kushner and published in 2003. The book was named one of the New York Times Book Review’s 10 Best Illustrated Books of 2003.

The Rosenbach translates the character of Brundibar into a valuable lesson about bullying for young visitors to grasp, with creative and informative gallery cards that help explain Sendak’s work.“Initially Sendak went right for the heart of the topic-he wanted to make Hitler the bully. So, he produced this image of Brundibar as an organ grinder, thinking about how much he hates children. And Sendak found this really wasn’t him, it was not subtle enough. So, as an illustrator he was directly going to the source without making it his own, it was too literal of an interpretation and was never published in the final book. Instead, the Brundibar Sendak ended up sketching is completely different-he has these intense blue eyes of Hitler and the little mustache with a Napoleonic costume but he is all withered and shriveled underneath the outfit. He has this big, blustery persona but he is the scrawny little person underneath, like a coward. It’s not that Maurice thought kids could not handle it; he just realized that the original image of Brundibar was not mysterious enough so he changed his approach to fit the style that he (Sendak) was most comfortable with. The memories of the Holocaust are nothing something that Sendak ever felt he could resolve so this is his way of dealing with it,” explained Rodgers.

Gallery Three: Sendak and His Storytelling

Sendak’s favorite author is Herman Melville, who penned Moby-Dick, and in this room at the Rosenbach is (on loan) Melville’s stunning black walnut bookcase from his Berkshire estate Arrowhead. Inside, are pristine first editions of Moby-Dick, among other notable literary masterpieces. “Sendak wanted to include Melville in a very palpable way in the exhibit and having his bookcase in here does just that. And we filled it with Sendak’s favorite literature,” explained Rodgers. Maurice loves to collect books, and the touch screen monitor in this gallery has the author explaining how he enjoys smelling a book, feeling its surface and sketching his favorite characters from the authors he most admires.(As a young child, Sendak has also acknowledged he frequently sniffed at, bit or chewed on the books he read.) Sendak has illustrated some of most beloved favorite fairy tales with the pictures in this gallery, such as stories from the Brothers Grimm and Mother Goose.

Maurice Sendak in his Connecticut studio, March 2003. Photo courtesy of The Rosenbach Museum

Maurice Sendak in his Connecticut studio, March 2003. Photo courtesy of The Rosenbach Museum

Rodgers explained that Maurice Sendak has always enjoyed the process of storytelling, as Sendak’s father rarely read to him growing up but was known for his fantastical and wild tales. Sendak’s career has been the subject of some controversy as his attraction to the forbidden or nightmarish aspects of children’s fantasy is often portrayed in his books. In Sendak’s Pierre a little boy who behaves badly is eaten by a hungry lion. “Pierre is fantastically dark; it’s very theatrical and graceful. And, you can see the infusion of his love of Melville and (William) Blake. It’s a glimpse of his own personal favorites, and very much has an adult theme so it has been the source of literary discussion through the years. Sendak could not resist illustrating the authors he found so admirable,” said Rodgers.

Gallery Four: Sendak’s Settings

Sendak has very distinct backgrounds in his illustrations, as the final gallery room demonstrates, where he puts many of his mysteries and stories that support his interesting characters. The moon serves a variety of purposes in Sendak’s art. As his favorite source of lighting, the blue-white glow of moonlight adds mystery and depth to many of his picture books. The famous “wild rumpus” of Where the Wild Things Are takes places beneath a full moon. And, the image of Max in his wolf suit, surrounded by Wild Things howling at the moons, harkens back to the mythology of werewolves. “It is very hard to find a Sendak book that occurs in sunlight. The moon is so often present in his work. The moon is a mysterious element in itself, think ‘Man in the Moon,’ so Sendak takes advantage of that because there is a long line of children’s story tellers who have incorporate the moon in their work. He even makes the moon a character in some of his books-where the moon will transport characters from one scene to another, the moon will turn out to be another character in disguise. Sendak’s reoccurring use of the moon is almost as much of a character as it is a background element which is kind of fun,” noted Rodgers.

There’s a Mystery There: Sendak on Sendak exhibition highlights:

  • Original color artwork from books such as Where the Wild Things Are, In the Night Kitchen, The Nutshell Library, Outside Over There, and Brundibar.
  • “Dummy” books filled with lively preliminary sketches for titles like The Sign on Rosie’s Door, Pierre, and Higglety, Pigglety, Pop!
  • Never-before-seen working materials, such as newspaper clippings that inspired Sendak, family portraits, photographs of child models and other ephemera.
  • Rare sketches for unpublished editions of stories such as Tolkien’s The Hobbit and Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw, and other illustrating projects.
  • Unique materials from the Rosenbach collection that relate to Sendak’s work, including an 1853 edition of the tales of the Brothers Grimm, sketches by William Blake, and Herman Melville’s bookcase.
  • Stories told by the illustrator himself on topics like Alice in Wonderland, his struggle to illustrate his favorite novels, hilarious stories of Brooklyn, and the way his work helps him exorcise childhood traumas.

For more information on Museum Week, which runs April 27th to May 3rd, visit PhillyFunGuide.com/Museum Week.

The movie adaptation of Spike Jonze’s Where The Wild Things Are is scheduled for release in October of 2009.

There’s A Mystery There: Sendak on Sendak will be on display at the Rosenbach Museum & Library from May 6, 2008 to May 3, 2009, with new works on view every four months. A total of over 300 original watercolors, pen-and-ink sketches, doodles, manuscripts, books, and dummy books from the 1950s to today will be on display. Visitors can access new interviews with Sendak through digital touch screens throughout the galleries. This exhibition will begin a national tour in the summer of 2009.

Sendak chose the Rosenbach Museum & Library in Philadelphia, PA to be the repository for his work in the early 1970s thanks to shared literary and collecting interests. His collection of nearly 10,000 works of art, manuscripts, books and ephemera, has been the subject of many exhibitions at the Rosenbach, seen by visitors of all ages. The Rosenbach Museum & Library seeks to inspire curiosity, inquiry, and creativity by engaging broad audiences in exhibitions, programs and research based on its remarkable and expanding collections. The museum was founded by legendary book dealer A.S.W. Rosenbach and his brother and business partner Philip. With an outstanding collection of rare books, manuscripts, furniture, and art, the Rosenbach is a museum and world-renowned research library, set within two historic 1865 townhouses, that reflects an age when great collectors lived among their treasures. For more information about the Rosenbach Museum & Library, visit www.rosenbach.org.

Hands-On tours are approximately one hour in length. All hands-On tours are free with museum admission. Tours are limited to six guests, ages 8 and up. No RSVP is required. Gallery talks are free with museum admission. To RSVP for gallery talks, email fdawson@rosenbach.org.

The Rosenbach Museum & Library is located at 2008-2010 Delancey Place and is open Tuesday through Sunday. Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for students, and free for children under 5. For more information, please call (215) 732-1600.

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The Marvelous Mercer http://aroundmainline.com/living/the-marvelous-mercer.html http://aroundmainline.com/living/the-marvelous-mercer.html#comments Thu, 09 Apr 2009 17:21:13 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=378 Doylestown’s majestic Mercer Museum and Fonthill Castle, built by renowned architect Henry Mercer, offer Main Liners a marvelous journey back in time and a culturally intriguing daycation.

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By AML Publisher
Photos courtesy April Ziegler Photography

Henry Mercer’s eccentric and comprehensive collection of artifacts from around the globe is showcased throughout the massive structure known as the Mercer Museum.  The museum’s annual Folk Fest, held each year on Mother’s Day weekend, celebrates traditions of the past, including a popular sheep shearing contest.

Henry Mercer’s eccentric and comprehensive collection of artifacts from around the globe is showcased throughout the massive structure known as the Mercer Museum. The museum’s annual Folk Fest, held each year on Mother’s Day weekend, celebrates traditions of the past, including a popular sheep shearing contest.

Henry Chapman Mercer (1856-1930) was a pack rat, in the best sense of the word. At the turn of the century, Mercer, a leader in the arts and crafts movement and a wealthy renaissance man who wore many hats (architect, academic, archaeologist and writer just to name a few) constructed two massive concrete castles in Bucks County to showcase a breathtaking and massive collection of American and ancient artifacts. Today, these architectural masterpieces still stand in Doylestown and are home to two of the country’s most breathtaking museums, The Mercer Museum and Fonthill, Mercer’s former home. Thanks to Mercer’s vision, preserving the past for future generations with tens of thousands of unusual artifacts from around the globe, there exists a Main Line daycation unlike any other.

The six story building leads to a breathtaking atrium where large objects are suspended for visitors to appreciate as part of the 50,000 artifacts the Mercer houses.

The six-story building leads to a breathtaking atrium where large objects are suspended for visitors to appreciate as part of the 50,000 artifacts the Mercer houses.

Henry Mercer was born in Doylestown in 1856. Educated at Harvard Law School and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, Mercer was appointed Curator of American and Prehistoric Archeology by the University of Pennsylvania Museum in the early 1890’s. His time there convinced Mercer that American society was being destroyed by industrialism, leading him to vacate his position in the late 1890’s so he could devote himself to finding old American artifacts and study German pottery.

Mercer became very involved in acquiring materials and hand-crafted tools from early nineteenth century America. Later in his life, he decided to expand his vast Euro-centric collection and arranged trips to gather objects from West Africa and Asia. Mercer had a special affinity for ceramics and print making and was also particularly fond of earthenware pottery metal works and decorative Pennsylvania–German stove plates.

To serve as a comfortable home base, Mercer began construction on his home, Fonthill, in 1908 when he was 51. The reinforced concrete building, boasting forty-four rooms, ten bathrooms, at least thirty-two stairwells, an Otis elevator and two dumbwaiters, was completed in 1912. Mercer incorporated his own tiles into Fonthill’s architecture as well as tiles he had collected during his travels. Supporting a voracious reading habit, Fonthill’s built-in bookcases hold over 6,000 books. After Mercer’s death in 1930 at his home, the castle was operated by a trust and eventually merged into the hands of the Bucks County Historical Society. Today, over 40 volunteers run the guided tours of Fonthill, which welcomes over 30,000 visitors each year from all around the world.

Mercer’s tiles can be found in buildings across the globe including the Capitol Building in Harrisburg and the Casino in Monte Carlo.

Mercer’s tiles can be found in buildings across the globe including the Capitol Building in Harrisburg and the Casino in Monte Carlo.

The Mercer Museum was completed in June of 1916, and was inspired by the amazing collection Mercer was successful in amassing. Thanks to eight day laborers and a horse named “Lucy”, the 6500 tons of concrete stand an impressive six stories high on a 40 acre stretch of land, also in Doylestown. The building is an awesome castle and poses an exciting adventure for all visitors. “It is spatially mysterious and intriguing for everyone, young and old. With the Mercer, you never know what will greet you on the next turn—you could very well find yourself standing under a gallows! From a Conestoga wagon to a stage coach to a whale oil lamp that is over 2,000 years old, it is quite a diverse and most intriguing collection,” explained Cory Amsler, Vice President for Collections and Interpretations of the Mercer Museum.

On the third level of the Mercer is the Spruance Library, a research library open to the public and devoted to the collection and preservation of historic and genealogical documents. Bucks County natives can trace their family history through the comprehensive records and research their Doylestown ancestors. The Library houses over 15,000 volumes of books; periodicals, newspapers, pamphlets, maps, and prints; over 12,000 photographs and postcards, and a wide variety of ephemera such as trade and greeting cards as well as social invitations.

Neiman Marcus once used Fonthill, Henry Mercer’s home, as a backdrop for their annual, and boldly extravagant, Christmas catalog. The reinforced concrete structure, completed in 1912, has 44 rooms and 18 fireplaces.

Neiman Marcus once used Fonthill, Henry Mercer’s home, as a backdrop for their annual, and boldly extravagant, Christmas catalog. The reinforced concrete structure, completed in 1912, has 44 rooms and 18 fireplaces.

The Mercer Museum offers a variety of programs for all ages including an audio guide of the collections, grade-specific school programs, family craft activities, craft demonstrations and classes, and a summer craft camp. There are also scavenger hunts of sorts to keep younger visitors entertained and learning. Gayle Shupack is the Mercer Museum’s Marketing and Public Relations Coordinator. “Here we have these great, amazing castles in the middle of Bucks County. When people come here for the first time, they always comment that they feel like they are in the European countryside,” said Shupack. “And, the great thing is, we are so affordable and still have so much to offer. A ticket to the museums is less than the price of going to a movie…and they are one mile away. Fonthill’s forty-four rooms offer an intriguing and educational guided tour for visitors. While with Mercer, you are free to roam the entire castle and discover the variety of objects and history it has to offer. The Mercer experience ticket is a great value—it offers a combination entrance fee for both museums, and beautiful downtown Doylestown, with its restaurant row, is within walking distance of the Mercer,” said Shupack.

Every day objects from early America (including those used in trades such as blacksmithing, shoemaking and printing) spark the imagination of what our forefathers’ lives were like. “We have so many curious pieces that you would never have the chance to see up close anywhere else. One of the most interesting objects that I am personally intrigued with is our stage coach. It draws a lot of attention and questions because it is very tiny—it makes you wonder how people even sat in there,” said Shupack. There are also unique things that you will probably never see elsewhere, including Native American implements dating to 6,000-8,000 B.C.

“One of Mercer’s goals was to collect objects that he knew eventually would be obsolete. He was a true visionary and a very wealthy man who had the resources to put this collection into motion,” said Shupack. The collection started as an acquisition from the Bucks County Historical Society and was expanded by Mercer from there. The museum showcases 60% of its 50,000 plus artifacts.

Each May brings the annual folk fest, which celebrates a simpler time and transports visitors back in time as many hobbies and crafts of a time gone by are celebrated in demonstrations across the grounds. This is the 36th year for the festival, always held on Mother’s Day Weekend. It offers an affordable afternoon with something for everyone with more than 80 crafters from nine states participating. “It is an amazing weekend with a tremendous amount of history and education for the families and visitors. We have live entertainment all day, a quilt raffle, puppetry for the kids, you name it. People tell me they come for the whole experience because it takes them back to another era, a time that is hard to conceptualize now with all our modern amenities. There are some great activities on the grounds that are always huge crowd favorites—particularly the glass blowing and sheep shearing demonstrations which the children fully enjoy. Its nine dollars for adults and children under 12 get in free, so it is very affordable! Plus, you receive a complimentary pass to the museum with a ticket to the folk fest. You can’t beat it for the value and fun,” said Shupack.

The sprawling grounds of both estates have become very popular venues for weddings and corporate events. The Mercer’s Elkins Gallery, a stately Georgian room that displays the museum’s collection of Bucks County paintings, can be booked for gatherings for up to 150 people. In addition, Fonthill’s Terrace Pavilion offers an intimate setting for rehearsal dinners or surprise parties. Combined with a tent on the picturesque 60 acres that reflects the rich heritage of Bucks County, Fonthill can serve as the breathtaking setting for a lawn party or wedding of up to 200 people.

In addition to the Mercer Museum and Fonthill, Mercer also designed and constructed The Moravian Pottery and Tile Works which is now owned and operated by the Bucks County Department of Parks and Recreation. Mercer was well known for his research and appreciation of ceramic tiles. His tiles can be seen on the floor of the Pennsylvania State Capitol Building in Harrisburg, among other notable buildings across the globe. The series of four hundred mosaics at the Capitol trace the history of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania from prehistoric times. These three buildings, all closely make up Doylestown’s “Mercer Mile,” the stretch that connects the monstrous, medieval castles.

Both of Mercer’s concrete masterpieces have been recognized nationally and internationally by prestigious media outlets. Over 80,000 people visit the Mercer Museum each year. Martha Stewart Magazine editors toured Fonthill in September of 2007 as part of a cultural treasure series. “Fonthill has been featured on the A&E show America’s Great Castles. The Mercer Museum has been highlighted on the History Channel several times. Both of these great pieces of Mercer’s life are regularly, nationally and internationally, recognized for their incredible collections. Both museums are National Historic Landmarks. But, it is always the people in our own backyard, in the Delaware Valley, who don’t know what great cultural treasures and rich experiences are just a short drive away here in beautiful Bucks County,” said Shupack.

SAVE THE DATE!
36th Annual Mercer Museum Folk Fest (Rain or Shine)
Saturday & Sunday, May 9-10, 2009
10 a.m.-5 p.m., Mercer Museum

Traditional artisans make the skills and trades of early America come to life. Enjoy a fun-filled day for the entire family, with all-day live entertainment, costumed craft demonstrations, militia encampment, quilt raffle, shopping, picnic foods and more. More than 80 crafters come from 9 states to participate.

Entertainment:

Folk Fest offers a variety of family entertainment. The Children’s Stage features puppetry, storytelling and music. The Main Stage offers jugglers and blue grass music. In addition, there is a Children’s Craft Tent where youngsters make a craft to take home. Visitors can also ride a horse-drawn hay wagon or take a unique horse-powered carousel ride.

New prices for savings in 2009!

Admission is $9 for adults, ages 12 and under FREE, BCHS members with membership card $4. Includes admission to the Mercer Museum. Call for group rates (10 or more paying as a group); 215-345-0210 ext. 123.

The Mercer Museum is located at 845 Pine Street, Doylestown, PA and is a short walk from the Doylestown R5, so it is easily accessible for Main Liners traveling the train. The Museum hours are Monday-Saturday 10am to 5pm, Tuesday 10am to 9pm and Sunday Noon to 5pm. The Spruance Library is open Tuesday 1-9pm, Wednesday-Friday 1-5pm and Saturday 10am to 5pm.

Fonthill, Henry Mercer’s home, is located at East Court Street & Route 313 in Doylestown, PA. It is open for tours Monday-Saturday 10am to 5pm and Sunday noon to 5pm. Reservations are strongly advised.

For more information contact 215-345-0210 or visit www.mercermuseum.org.

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Peddler’s Village: A Main Line Daycation that Delivers http://aroundmainline.com/living/peddlers-village-a-main-line-daycation-that-delivers.html http://aroundmainline.com/living/peddlers-village-a-main-line-daycation-that-delivers.html#comments Fri, 26 Sep 2008 06:25:51 +0000 http://aroundmainline.com/?p=64 Peddler’s Village is the number one tourist destination in Bucks County, Pennsylvania offering visitors a unique dining and shopping experience in the Lahaska countryside.

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Weekends are certainly the time we treasure with family and friends but finding the financial resources in this day and age to plan full blown getaways can be difficult. So, a daycation (a day trip that doesn’t exceed a full tank of gas and is a reasonable distance from your home) is a great, affordable, satisfying alternative and a travel concept steadily gaining in popularity. Since the Main Line and surrounding suburbs are so rich with activity, events and interesting people and places, I’m excited to begin what I believe will be a valuable resource for our readers, Main Line Daycations!

So, this is the first in AroundMainLine.com’s special travel series, and I hope you find it useful, interesting and educating. For those of you new to the Main Line area, welcome, and we hope that you will find some inspirational ideas here for exploring and experiencing this great area. Our travel section you should be of great help navigating around this area you now call home, welcome! And for ML vets such as myself, I hope to remind you of some great, affordable afternoon options that fill your weekends with fun and rich memories without breaking the bank—and I’m sure you’ll see some new ideas too!

Without further ado, sink your teeth into our inaugural travel feature. I would love to hear your feedback, thoughts and suggestions for future daycations.

Enjoy!
AML Publisher
info@aroundmainline.com


Peddler's Village Walk

Peddler's Village Walk

And so there I was…with so many choices in front of me and the precious freedom of the last weekend of Summer 2008 ticking away as the morning approached noon. Where should I venture out to for my first AML Daycation? I had been considering the popular Peddler’s Village for a few weeks and after a quick glance at their website, decided it sounded like the perfect trip. So, a quick stop at the Wayne Starbucks for my usual iced grande mocha (with whip and an extra shot, thank you), a brief run into the bank for some cash for the tolls and perhaps a little spending money, and off I was on 476 heading north on the PA turnpike to beautiful Bucks County to explore what Peddler’s Village had to offer. The detailed directions online (www.peddlersvillage.com) were most helpful and accurate in helping me arrive at this 70 plus-store shopping paradise in just under an hour. It was not that exciting of a drive, I have to admit, but a gorgeous sunny day and some great music on the radio made it tolerable. Certainly, a little car company would have helped!

Peddler’s Village was booming with couples, babies, bikers and browsers when I arrived and I was pleased to find free, convenient parking in the first lot on the left. My first stop was in the Village Flower Shoppe, an enchanting and affordable home décor and accent boutique that had a full variety of Fall items beautifully displayed for under ten dollars. Many of the shoppers were scooping up the pumpkins, ceramic gourds and anything and everything in an autumnal shade. The woman behind the counter was sweet and immediately handed me a Where to Shop map so I could make my way around. Continuing down the brick sidewalk, I also came across some other great venues, namely an adorable baby shop, Periwinkle Place, and Skin ’n Tonic (www.skinntonic.com) a full service spa and salon.

Peddler's Village - Shady Lamp Scarecrow

Peddler's Village - Scarecrow Competition 2008

Across the street, I headed towards what seemed like the center of town and where a sizable group of visitors had gathered. The Cock and Bull Restaurant was bustling and the manager was hastily taking reservations for a crowd of diners. I glanced in but had just started my day so a bite to eat would have to wait. Moving on, I was greeted with beautiful hanging baskets at every lamppost, a crisp pond with goldfish and cool plantings and a center courtyard that had families eating picnic lunches and soaking in the sun. No wonder the website boasts Peddler’s Village as the “number one tourist destination in Bucks County!” Another store I found quite inviting was Season Gates, where I stopped and chatted with store owner Kate Zeiss. Kate reaffirmed my first impression of Peddler’s Village. “This really is a place everyone can come. It’s beautiful, so family friendly and the prices are affordable. We have a great local following in Bucks County but would welcome everyone to stop by.” Season Gates had a variety of inventory including a neat, one-of-a kind $6,000 walnut bar and stool set designed by local artist Chris Costner. Perhaps not along the lines of affordable options but a perfect purchase for the discriminating shopper and a masterpiece of workmanship I certainly appreciated! Kate said Costner is really making a name for himself in Bucks County (as my web research later affirmed) and I’d bet with football season in full swing the bar set will soon find a lucky home.

My next stop and my favorite store of the day caught the attention of my nose before my eyes even set on the whimsical, inviting window display. The Soap Opera Company (www.SoapOperaCompany.com) is run by twin sisters Karen Nocella and Sharon Viola, who opened it in November 2003. The shop is quaint and pristine and the soapy aromas draw you in from the sidewalk. I was one of about a dozen shoppers enjoying the homemade bath and beauty products and purchased a few bath toys and gels for a favorite 6 year-old friend of mine ($11). Karen was at the register and could not have been sweeter—and said her store will be expanding its gift options moving into the holiday season.

Ninety minutes into my leisurely stroll, it was finally time to eat and I had conveniently just landed in front of Earl’s Prime (www.earlsprime.com), a lucky find considering I was navigating almost blind (albeit with the Shopping Guide) around the 42 acres Peddler’s Village boasts. It was a little intimidating from the outside as it gave the look and feel of a high-end steakhouse. But, I was pleasantly surprised to find an affordable, tempting menu when I walked inside and two helpful hostesses who quickly made a table in the bar available. With ESPN Gameday on mute and a decent crowd that conversed in hushed tones, it was the perfect quiet lunch spot to catch up on some work. Earl’s Prime has quite the selection of draught beers including but not limited to: Guinness, Fullers London Pride, Anchor Steam, Hoegaarden, Sam Adams, Chimay White and more. My waiter quickly brought me an iced-cold Stella Artois and I spent a good 15 minutes deciding on an appetizer. (I surmised this would be a generous and sufficient lunch since all the diners around me were having ample-portion entrees delivered to their tables.) I was torn between the lobster spring rolls ($12) filled with bok choy, avocado, peppers and scallions, deep fried and served with a ginger sauce, and Earl’s crab cakes appetizer ($10) with angel hair pasta. My friendly server Kennedy suggests the Ahi Tuna ($10) with jicama slaw, chive oil and wasabi cream, insisting its’ a real crowd pleaser. I finally select the barbecued jumbo shrimp ($13) wrapped in prosciutto with barbeque sauce and smoked Guoda aoli. An awesome choice—the trio of shrimp were flavorful, tangy and satisfying–and the perfect complement to my icy Stella…yum!

After lunch, I browsed a few other boutiques and finally ended my day with a ‘dessert’ of sorts. Skip’s Candy Corner (www.skipscandycorner.com) was suggested by a handful of shop owners as a ‘must-see’ and so I stop in before I head back to Wayne. Shop #27 on the map is right in front of me as I walk back to the car and the simple candy shop is filled with a rich chocolate aroma. I snag a small bag of chocolate licorice (a childhood favorite), a fresh square of marbled fudge and a caramel-dipped apple for good ole Mom…all for about $12. The service in Skip’s is friendly and fast; even better, less than 24 hours after my visit Skip Pietrak himself leaves a message on my cell just checking in to see how my visit was—now that’s great service!

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of shops, the friendly sales people and the beautiful grounds of Peddler’s Village. There are plenty of sites and sounds for children including Giggleberry Fair, a family ‘edu-tainment’ center that boasts an indoor carousel and horse-drawn carriage rides on the grounds. And even after 40 years as a popular attraction, the Village hardly rests on its laurels, hosting 11 unique festivals and events peppered throughout the year. I can hardly wait to see the beautiful grounds come Christmas time! If you have a day to getaway with your girlfriends, spoil the grandkids or stroll through a nice setting hand in hand with your significant other, there’s no doubt in my mind Buck’s County’s Peddler’s Village is a daycation that delivers!

UPCOMING EVENTS AT PEDDLER’S VILLAGE FALL AND WINTER 2008
Free Admission and Parking with All Events

PEDDLER’S VILLAGE SCARECROW COMPETITION & DISPLAY
Monday, September 8- Sunday, October 26, 2008
Bigger than life scarecrow creations are displayed outdoors and compete for over $4900 in cash prizes. Be sure to vote for your favorites! These exceptional pieces of American Folkart are displayed in the following categories: The Keystone Krow, Traditional/Whirligig, Extraordinary Contemporary, Kids Only!, Quite The Character, and Group Crow. For more information call the Peddler’s Village Hospitality desk at 215-794-4000.

2008 APPLE FESTIVAL

Saturday, November 1 & Sunday, November 2, 2008
10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Scrumptious apple treats including country apple butter, apple cider, apple dumplings, apple fritters and everyone’s favorite–apples dipped in caramel! Take home a bushel fresh from the orchard. Craftspeople show their wares and demonstrate their skills. Live entertainment and apple pie-eating contests add to the festivities of this traditional autumn celebration.

GINGERBREAD HOUSE
Construction Demonstration
Thursday, October 9, 2008
1:30 to 3:30 pm
Location to be announced
Participants see how to make, bake and decorate
a gingerbread house from the foundation up.

GINGERBREAD HOUSE COMPETITION & DISPLAY
Friday, November 21, 2008 through January 8, 2009
Same as Shop Hours
FREE
Gingerbread house competition for over $3,400 in cash prizes in such categories as : Traditional, Authentic Reproduction of a Significant Building, Amateur, Unusual 3-Dimensional Creation, and Children’s. A visual delight, the entries are displayed throughout the holiday season in the Village Gazebo.

GRAND ILLUMINATION CELEBRATION
Friday, November 21, 2008
6:00 pm -10:00 pm. Lights ‘switched on’ 6:15 pm
Santa switches on the Villages outdoor holiday light display on Friday at 6:15 pm to kick off the holiday season and his weekend visits with children at Giggleberry Fair through December. Join us for free cider and marshmallow toasting that evening. Visit our shops throughout the weekend and preview our merchants’ distinctive choices for holiday gift giving.

MERCHANTS’ OPEN HOUSE
Friday, November 21 – Sunday, November 23, 2008
On Friday at 6:15 p.m., the Village’s outdoor holiday lights display debuts. Join us for free cider and toasted marshmallows. Visit our shops and preview our merchants’; distinctive choices for holiday gift-giving.

FRUIT WREATH DEMONSTRATION
2008 date and location to be announced
Learn how easy it is make your own door or window decoration for the holidays from fruit in the traditional Williamsburg style (della robia). See models of different styles and observe step-by-step procedures to complete your own at home. Led by Ann McAloan, floral designer and owner of Annie’s Flower Farm in Jamison, PA.

2008 CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL
Saturday, December 6 & Sunday, December 7, 2008
10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Join us for our annual Christmas Parade at 1:30 sharp on Saturday. Santa arrives in a horse-drawn carriage accompanied by local scout troops and heralded by the Central Bucks East marching band. The Village is beautifully decorated in Victorian-style, with fruit wreaths and greenery and provides live entertainment.

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