Museums of Kent County Open House – Saturday, May 5, 2018

A self driving tour of 12 museums in Kent County MD, will be held on Saturday, May 5, 2018 from 10am to 4pm. Appealing to all ages and interests, they exhibit the culture, lifestyles and history of this Eastern Shore county. Knowledgeable guides, some special events, and free admission await visitors. Brochures with a map available at Visitors Center, Kent Library, Sumner Hall and The Bordley Building in Chestertown. Supported by the Kent County Tourism Department and the Kent County Arts Council.

Museums of Kent County Open House – Saturday, May 5, 2018
Museums of Kent County Open House – Saturday, May 5, 2018

Massey Aero Museum   A living airport-museum reminiscent of rural airports of bygone eras. Vintage aircraft, artifacts and touch and feel exhibits. A restoration shop operates most days. Frequent fly-ins.
Open 10am – 4pm
33541 Maryland Line Rd Massey, MD 21650

Kent Museum Farming equipment representing the rural heritage of agriculture and domestic life. Charley’s House c. 1840, last surviving dwelling of a small black community
Open 10am – 3pm
13869 Turners Creek Rd Kennedyville, MD 21645

Knocks Folly 1796 Federal style brick home houses exhibits which highlight the history of farming, the native American Tockwogh tribe and visit of Captain John Smith during his voyage on the Chesapeake Bay.
Open 10 – 4
13761 Turners Creek Rd Kennedyville, Md 21645

Betterton Heritage Museum  Betterton Fishing Ark open for tours. Speed Joiner decoys on display. Photos show fishing and hunting as main occupations. Popular beach in early 1900’s with photos of the grand Rigbie Hotel. Gift Shop.
Open 10am – 3:30pm
100 Main St Betterton, MD   21610

Bordley History Center
Headquarters for the Historical Society of Kent County. Many resources are available to the researcher within the library, genealogical and archival spaces. Historical exhibits and shop.
Open 10am – 3pm
301 High St Chestertown, MD 21620

Sumner Hall   Restored and listed on National Register of Historic Places, it honors African-American Civil War vets of Charles Sumner Post #25, Grand Army of the Republic and features historical roles of African-Americans in Kent County.
Open 10am – 4pm
206 S. Queen St Chestertown Chestertown, MD 21620

*African-American Schoolhouse  Interpretive panel and exterior viewing only. Still in its original location.
St. James Newtown Rd, north of Worton, MD 21678

Cliffs Schoolhouse   One room school with seven grades and one teacher served families of rural southern Kent County from 1878-1939. Furnishings, books and artifacts of the era. Blackboards with lessons.   In its original location.
Open 10am – 4pm
Cliffs City Rt. 289 S   8.5 miles south of Chestertown, MD 21620

Rock Hall Museum   Hand crafted boat and ship models, decoy carving shop replica, seafood processing, boat oystering rig, ice buoy, representing the marine culture of Rock Hall.
Open 10am – 4pm
5585 Main St. Town Building, Rock Hall, Md 21661

Waterman’s Museum   Artifacts and a fishing shanty from the early days of oystering, crabbing and fishing. Photographic documentation of past and present watermen. Next to Haven Harbour Marina.
Open 10am – 4pm
Rock Hall Avenue, Rock Hall, MD 21661

Tolchester Beach Revisited   Presents and preserves the history of this amusement park 1877 to 1962. Pictures, artifacts and memorabilia of the most popular resort along the Chesapeake Bay.
Open 10am – 4pm
Oyster Court off Sharp & Main Rock Hall, MD 21661

Rock Hall Marine Restoration and Heritage Center Located in the historic Clam House on Rock Hall’s harbor. “Steamboats on the Chesapeake and Chester River” exhibit shows the history of recreational and working vessels on the ‘Bay.
Open 11am – 4pm
21083 Chesapeake Avenue Rock Hall, MD 21661

Contact:     Carol Cordes                                John Schratwieser                   

410-778-9173                                                  410-778-3700
410-441-9551                                                   410-708-9751

Interactive Online Map



Historically accurate books of fiction and nonfiction published between July 1, 2017 and July 31, 2018 are now being considered for the 2018 GRATEFUL AMERICAN BOOK PRIZE. Submissions will be accepted until July 31. There are no fees to enter. The winner will receive $13,000 and a medallion created by renowned American artist, Clarice Smith.  Two authors will also be given “Honorable Mention” medallions, and $500 each.

For more information, go to The Grateful American Book Prize Submission Form.

John Grimaldi


Kent County Arts Council Elects Four New Members to its Board of Directors

The KCAC is delighted to announce the unanimous election of four new members to our Board of Trustees. Their diverse array of areas of expertise- from music performance to entrepreneurship to media relations – reaffirm the notion that a love for the arts can be carried across careers, age, and educational background.

These newly elected members join the Arts Council’s existing board members; Clarke Bjorke,
Meredith Davies Hadaway, Carol DeGennaro, Marc Dykeman, Irene Moore, Robert Earl Price,
Marilee Schumann, and Director Emeritus, Leslie Prince Raimond. The Arts Council is proud to
introduce you to our new board members.

Jason E. Claire

Jason E. Claire – A native of the New York City suburbs, Jason fostered his interests in art, design, and gastronomy by graduating from Duke University with a triple major in art history,design, and pre-medicine. After receiving his MBA from Georgetown University, he co-founded a luxury furniture retailer and local gallery called Vastu in Washington D.C, which secured contracts for internationally recognized brands in addition to sponsoring six annual art
exhibitions. While managing the development of interior design projects, Jason also supervised marketing, sales, training, and accounting at Vastu. Having recently returned from nearly five years in Switzerland with his husband Mark, where he worked in management consultancy fora company called FoundersCard, Jason is eager to establish firm roots in the Chestertown arts community and Kent County as a whole.

Kent County Arts Council Elects Four New Members to its Board of Directors

Stephanie King

Stephanie King – After graduating from San Jose State University in California with a degree in Piano Performance, Stephanie earned her Master of Arts in Teaching and went on to direct band, choir, and orchestra in Oregon public schools. She later served as the Creative Arts Director for a metropolitan church in Portland, and for 12 years held the position of Music Director and Organist at a church in Sisters, Oregon. Her passion for music has taken her across many borders, as she has led five international choir tours and visits Italy every summer as faculty for the International Lyric Academy and Tuscia Opera Festival. Stephanie currently works here in Chestertown as the Music Director and Choirmaster at Emmanuel Church, and hopes to continue to support and encourage the arts in Kent County while also enjoying kayaking, yoga, cooking, and the company of her four grandchildren.

Kent County Arts Council Elects Four New Members to its Board of Directors

Kate McGraw

Kate McGraw – Kate is currently the Deputy Director of the Psychological Health Center of Excellence at the Department of Defense, where she focuses on meeting the mental health needs of female service members and veterans, as well as male and female service members who have experienced sexual assault and harassment. She is also the lead for the DoD Sexual Assault Advisory Group and the current chair for the Peace Corps Sexual Assault Advisory Council. Kate is also an accomplished musician and self-taught artist with an undergraduate
degree in piano from the Hartt School of Music, where she also worked professionally as avocal coach and music director. She has received numerous accolades for her solo piano performances, and in her spare time offers her services to local musical theatre companies and art galleries. Also a skilled writer, both professional and creative, Kate has penned an award-winning column on mental health published in the Wilmington Delaware News Journal in addition to various professional articles in scientific books and journals.

Kent County Arts Council Elects Four New Members to its Board of Directors

Charles Taylor

Charles Taylor – Charles graduated from St. Paul’s College with a degree in Organizational Management and later studied Urban Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. An early job as a radio announcer followed by a brief stint as a newspaper reporter launched Charles on a 37-year communications and media relations career encompassing the nonprofit,
public, and private sectors. Charles has served as a senior corporate communications representative for Pepco and Dominion Virginia Power, a government media relations managerf or Arlington County, VA, and a writer at the National Association of Counties in Washington,D.C. Since retiring in Chestertown last year, Charles has immersed himself in the community and fostered his love for music by by serving on the county’s Social Action Committee, the Marketing Committee of the National Music Festival, and by singing with the Chester River Chorale.

“It is critical, when entrusted with public funds, that the board and staff of the Kent County Arts
Council not only be fully engaged and fully transparent about our grant making activities, but
that we hold our grantees to the highest of standards of community engagement,” said Arts
Council Director John Schratwieser, “Our board of directors plays a critical role in ensuring that
each application for funding is thoroughly reviewed, and is done so objectively holding the
benefit to the community in the highest regard.” Our new members live and/or work in our
community and are committed to measuring the impact of the public dollars that we award. In
addition, each is fully committed to the Kent County Arts Council’s mission to “invest, infuse,
and inspire, the arts for all in Kent County.”

The new members begin their work immediately, and will be a part of the FY 2019 grant award
process which will begin in May 2018 for the coming fiscal year.

U.S. schoolchildren suffer from a ‘history deficit’

WASHINGTON, DC – The Department of Education conducts periodic assessments of the proficiency of America’s Elementary, Middle School and High School students. “Their findings have been alarmingly dismal as they relate to the knowledge our children have of our country’s history and that does not bode well for the future. Without knowing the past – who we are as a nation — future generations will not be able to function responsibly, says education advocate David Bruce Smith.

Smith says that parents understandably want what’s best for their children by giving them a good education that will lead to a good job when they leave school. In fact, he points out, the mission of our schools is to teach them how to become educated and conscientious citizens and he cites Devin Foley, CEO of IntellectualTakeout, an organization focused on education: “you can have an opinion and you can vote, but you have no real understanding of the lessons of the past, both good and bad. Indeed, if you don’t know your history, you have no idea where we have come from and how it formed the present. The future is not yours to shape, but merely to stumble blindly into.”

Is history such a daunting subject and is that why students lack proficiency in the subject? No, says Smith. “But, it can be boring. Ask students about history class, and you’re likely to hear that word, over and over. Let’s face it: the textbooks and handouts can be pretty dull and, as a result, it may be hard for youngsters to make a connection with their lives today.”

It was the late Dr. Bruce Cole, former chairman of the Endowment for the Humanities, who inspired Smith to create the Grateful American Book Prize. Together they established the Prize in 2015 to confront the history deficit in our schools.

The idea was to get more authors and their publishers to put out more engaging works of historically accurate fiction and nonfiction for young learners. And, it would appear that there are now more well researched books based on the events and personalities of U.S. history being published each year.

“Over the three years since the Prize was established we’ve received hundreds of books that fulfill our mission. And they all stir up a desire among teen and preteen readers to learn more about our country’s past,” according to Smith.

Author Jonathan Stokes had this to say when he submitted his book, The Thrifty Guide to the American Revolution, for the 2018 Prize: “I love the mission of The Grateful American Book Prize. When I was in public school, the American Revolution was taught as the driest, dustiest topic imaginable. It was only as an adult that I discovered the Revolution is one of the most incredible underdog stories of all time. My goal in writing my guide to the American Revolution is to make the history as exciting and accessible as possible to kids.”

NOTE TO EDITORS: Books of fiction and nonfiction that are eligible for the 2018 Prize can be submitted until July 31, 2018. They must be historically accurate, geared for children ages 11 to 15 and published between July 1, 2017 and July 31, 2018. Submission information and forms are available here.

Jewish Literature Live! Presents Susan Faludi

George Washington University’s Department of English and Jewish Literature Live proudly present Susan Faludi, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author of In the Dark Room, Tuesday April 24 in the Marvin Center Amphitheater (800 21st NW 3rd Floor) from 7-9pm.

Susan Faludi is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author of bestselling books, including Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women. This event will focus on her latest book In the Darkroom, a memoir about Faludi’s revelations regarding her estranged father, a Hungarian Holocaust fugitive who decides to undergo sex change surgery at age 76. The work simultaneously explores history, Judaism, and gender identity, and it received the 2016 Kirkus Prize. In the Darkroom was also nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and named one of the New York Times Best Books of 2016.

The event is free and open to the public. First come-first serve seating.

Jewish Literature Live! 2018 Schedule

Jewish Literature Live! Presents Susan Faludi