A Double Celebration Of Maryland's Beginnings
Thursday, March 16, 2006
Maryland's birthday will be celebrated next week at both St. Mary's County sites that claim to be the birthplace of the state.
A wreath-laying at the St. Clement's Island historical marker, near where the first European settlers landed on March 25, 1634, will commemorate that event on March 25.
Celebrants will gather at the St. Clement's Island-Potomac River Museum in Coltons Point for the event, which begins at 11 a.m. and will include comments by the St. Mary's County commissioners and a keynote speech by Maryland Secretary of State Mary D. Kane. The wreath-laying ceremony will conclude the celebration.
A light lunch will be available after the program. To make reservations for the lunch or for more information about the program, contact program coordinator Kim Cullins at 301-769-2385 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Historic St. Mary's City, the site of Maryland's first colonial capital, will commemorate the colonists' landing with a day-long program March 26.
Special activities will begin at 10 a.m. with the second annual Kite Festival. Visitors are encouraged to bring and fly their kites.
The official Maryland Day program will begin at 1:30 p.m. in the historic Town Center. On the schedule are speeches, awards and the Ceremony of the Flags, in which children representing each Maryland jurisdiction present their county's colors.
Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) will speak, followed by Harvard-trained sociologist Gabrielle Tayac, who will deliver the keynote address. Tayac, a member of the Piscataway tribe, has published widely on American Indian issues. She is a curator for the National Museum of the American Indian. She will talk about the heritage of Southern Maryland's native people, and what happened to their communities after the colony was founded.
The Cross Bottony award will be presented to John Krugler, author of "English and Catholic: The Lords Baltimore in the Seventeenth Century"; and to Melvin Price, who retired in 2005 after 32 years on the staff of Historic St. Mary's City. Color guards from the St. Maries Citty Militia and Patuxent River Naval Air Station also will participate. The Great Mills High School Symphonic Band will provide patriotic music.
At 4 p.m., the St. Mary's College of Maryland Orchestra, members of the Chesapeake Orchestra and the St. Mary's County High School Orchestra Ensemble, featuring students from Chopticon, Great Mills and Leonardtown high schools, will perform Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 and Mozart's "Requiem." Jeffrey Silberschlag will direct the ensemble in the Athletic and Recreation Center at St. Mary's College.
There is no charge for the concert, and admission to Historic St. Mary's City exhibits -- the Maryland Dove, Town Center, the Woodland Indian Hamlet and the Godiah Spray Tobacco Plantation -- are waived on Maryland Day.
Extension for Drug Plan?
Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) is asking the Bush administration to extend the penalty-free enrollment period for the new Medicare prescription drug plan.