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Eileen Dwyer

Located on the border of Maryland and Pennsylvania on South Mountain, Pen Mar Park became a prominent resort in the late 19th century. The owner of the Western Maryland Railroad felt the scenic location in the cooler Blue Ridge Mountains would entice Baltimore-area residents out of their city dwellings during hot summer months. And, utilizing his railroad, the city dwellers did just that.  Back in its heyday, Pen Mar Park boasted many first-class hotels, a dance pavilion, dining hall, playground, scenic overlook, roller coaster, Ferris wheel, carousel, penny arcade, shooting gallery, movie theater, beer garden and a miniature train.

The park was by far one of the most popular resorts in the eastern United States, with close to 20,000 visitors taking the 71-mile trip from Baltimore to Pen Mar each summer weekend. President Grover Cleveland, Dr. Walter Reed, and even actress Joan Crawford counted among the Pen Mar’s early visitors.

Unfortunately, by the end of the 1920s, the once-glorious Pen Mar Park began to lose its luster, as tourist numbers declined. Over the next few decades, the park fell into rapid decline.

In 1977, Washington County purchased the park, and it was re-opened in 1980. Currently, Pen Mar Park holds live music concerts during the summer in the multi-use pavilion (located at the site of the original dance pavilion). Visitors also enjoy the playground, rent the pavilions for gatherings, hike the Appalachian Trail, and take in the picturesque view from High Rock Summit.

It is like stepping back in time to visit the Pen Mar dance pavilion on Sundays between 2:00 and 5:00 p.m., where various musicians provide entertainment as part of the Jim and Fay Powers Music Series. Visitors of all ages dance or simply watch and soak it all in. Whether a seasoned professional of swing or ballroom dance or a complete uncoordinated amateur simply wiggling to the tune, this place and activity replicates the spirit of the Pen Mar Park of yesteryear. Twenty-five to fifty percent of those who attend are considered regulars, with dance groups from Pennyslvania, Viriginia, and Maryland.

On an afternoon at the dance pavilion at the end of June, where folks gathered to watch, listen, or dance to fifties music and easy listening provided by “Détente,” David Jacoby of Gettysburg was visiting. He took relatives on a tour of the area and included stopping at Pen Mar Park, Thurmont, Emmitsburg, and Gettysburg along the way. He said, “I just like this place. I’ll stop when I’m close by and have some fun.”

Doris Flax was raised in Emmitsburg, but currently lives in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. She started visiting Pen Mar Park when she was just two years old and visits every chance she gets today. “My mother would bring us up here every Sunday, back then, to dance. Just like it is now.”

Shirley Rienks of Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, especially remembers “Everybody’s Day” when she was a youngster. She said, “They had babies. I have a picture of that.” Everybody’s Day will be held on August 26 this season. It will feature the Ray Birely Orchestra. The Rocky Birely Combo is also one of the featured bands at Pen Mar Park. Rocky’s father, Ray Birely, was the original band leader at Pen Mar back in the day.

Joe Etter of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, has been dancing at Pen Mar “off and on for about twenty years.” A seasoned dancer, he’s known to be the local expert about everything Pen Mar Park. He recalled his favorites from childhood: the penny arcade and the carousel.

Vicky Anderson from Montgomery County, Maryland, grew up in the area. She returns when she can and makes a day of it by stopping for a meal in Thurmont, bringing a book to read, and then dancing, “It’s really nice. The view from High Rock is just breathtaking.”

The Pen Mar Park Music Series will continue through September 30 this season. Pavilion reservations and park information may be obtained by contacting the Washington County Buildings, Grounds & Parks Department at 240-313-2807.


Pictured are Doris Flax (left) and Shirley Rienks (right) at the Pen Mar Dance Pavilion.

Dancers enjoy swing and ballroom dancing at the Pen Mar Dance Pavilion on Sundays.

James Rada, Jr.

The reason for the name “Cunningham” being chosen as the name of the Catoctin Area’s local waterfalls, located west of Thurmont on Route 77, has become slightly clearer recently when following a reference from a May 2018 issue of The Frederick News-Post to an article from 1968.

Historically, the falls had been called Herman’s Falls (or Harmon’s Falls) and McAfee Falls after various land owners, and even Hunting Creek Falls after the stream that supplies water through the Falls.

Many locals still refer to the waterfalls as McAfee Falls, honoring the family who owned the falls at the time the federal government took ownership of the land in 1935 as part of Former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal, which sought to use the land for recreational use and provide much-needed jobs in response to the Great Depression.

The McAfees were early settlers from Bute, Scotland, in the mid-1770s. The name had been changed to Cunningham Falls after the transition of ownership of the land from the federal government to the State of Maryland. There is no clarity as to how the name Cunningham stuck since there have been obvious efforts and intent on record to keep the name McAfee Falls.

A May 23, 2018, Frederick News-Post’s “Yesterday” post from “50 Years Ago” references that, “A mistake of more than 30 years standing (as of May 23, 1968) was righted recently when Maryland’s Commission on Forests and Parks renamed the falls in Cunningham Falls State Park. The official name is now McAfee Falls, honoring an old Frederick County family which settled in the area in 1790. As a logical follow-up the Forests and Parks Commission is now considering renaming the park Hunting Creek State Park.”

There are several theories about how the name Cunningham came to be the modern name of the Falls, but none are backed by a substantial amount of fact. Today, on the internet, it is stated that the falls “was apparently named after a photographer from Pen Mar Park who frequently photographed the falls.” Research shows that there is no evidence of a photographer of Pen Mar Park or Cunningham Falls by the name of Cunningham.

In a previous edition of The Catoctin Banner, a grandson of the Falls’ owner at the time of federal acquisition, Reuben McAfee, Rob McAfee of Foxville informed us that a local woman believed there was a Cunningham family who lived near the falls.

Most recently, the Frederick News-Post’s “50 Years Ago” reference led us to that May 23, 1968, article in the News-Post titled, “Cunningham Park Falls Renamed ‘McAfee Falls.’” In this article, written by Jim Gilford, the name Cunningham is referenced to, “honor a Department of Interior employee.”

Researchers still have yet to uncover the truth behind the mystery, but regardless, thousands of visitors enjoy the falls every year, which is the state of Maryland’s largest cascading waterfall, standing at 78 feet.

Jim Schlett

When our National Parks were first established, well over a century ago, painters and photographers created works that inspired Americans and people from around the world to journey and visit those areas and to generate interest in the parks. That practice lives on to this day. The National Park Service (NPS) still reaches out to potential “artists” through its Artist-In-Residency (AIR) program, which is available at over forty different locations.

After retiring from the Federal government with over thirty years of service, including the last fifteen as the director of administration for the Law Department, I decided to “refocus” on my photography. Through a very competitive application process, I was notified that I had been selected as the AIR at Catoctin Mountain Park for two weeks in May. Like other painters, my photos tell a story with images rather than words. I had been very fortunate to have been selected as the AIR at the Whiskeytown National Park Recreation Area in Northern California in 2016, so I had a good idea of what I wanted to accomplish and share with the Catoctin Park staff. Each park asks that the artist donate one piece of their work back to the Park after the residency is completed and to give a workshop/talk to the public during the residency.

My wife and I arrived on Sunday, May 6, 2018, in light rain, which created a bright spring green on our drive up from Virginia that I hoped would make for great photos over the next two weeks. That ride sparked a conversation about our great interest in our National Parks, dating back to the early 1980s with our first trip to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons,  now having visited over 140 sites to-date.

Based on my prior AIR experience at Whiskeytown Park, I kept a detailed journal of each day, touching on such activities as hikes, the people we met, and notes for future exploring. As part of the program, the park provides lodging to the artists. My wife and I were assigned housing at Camp Misty Mount, a historical complex of cabins built in the 1930s by the Works Progress Administration. On our first day, we met AIR Coordinator Carrie Andresen, a dedicated park ranger, who provided us with an excellent overview of the park, potential workshop dates, introduced other park employees and volunteers, and also talked about on-going events of the park. Afterward, we unpacked the car in now heavy rain and settled into the cabin. I was able to take just a few images of the surrounding area and cabins for the first afternoon; we then made our way down to the Kountry Kitchen in Thurmont for a great dinner.

In addition to creating my own images of the park, I had made an offer to take photos of the park employees and volunteers during my stay. As a result, I managed to meet many employees and volunteers, who all went the extra mile in terms of reaching out to me and all of the visitors to the park. Catoctin Park provided space in the Visitors Center for the display of my photography; so, on the first Monday, we installed about fifteen of my canvas prints. I also provided a daily update of three to four new images for each day at the park, which were also posted at the Visitors Center, as well as on  their Facebook page and mine. Over the two weeks, we hiked essentially all of the trails, and some more than once. I was amazed at the quietness and peaceful feeling of just being in the park. I discovered what many of the locals must know, it really is a hidden gem in the National Park Service. Enjoying American history at the same time, I learned of the creation of the park and its legacy, including training grounds for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the predecessor to the CIA, during World War II.

It doesn’t take long in a National Park to find inspiration for creating new work. As an example, a simple, relatively easy walk along the Blue Blazes Trail would lead to hundreds of photos of the stream, trees, flowers and eventually the whiskey still. During one of my photo workshops, two of the participants were quickly laying down on the ground, capturing close-ups of what they described as a rare flower find by its scientific name. On a few days, a heavy fog and mist—which I was excited to see—provided unique lighting for new images. I find that light plays a critical role in finding photographs, and that is why I often go back to specific locations several times to try and capture just the right light. The light can make the difference between a good photograph and a great one. Wandering around also has its benefits when searching for new photographic opportunities, and I took full advantage of wandering while in the AIR program. Every morning involved a short walk from the cabin, within a 200-yard radius, that brought me in contact with many varieties of flowers, trees, and wildlife that often set the tone for the day.

My efforts were geared to try to take meaningful photographs of Catoctin that are so hard to put into words. It has been said that our National Parks are one of “America’s Best ideas,” and I truly feel that is so true. In our parks, I sense a re-connection to nature and the universe that is so needed in today’s fast-paced society and world. As John Muir said, “come to the woods, there is rest.” We were so enthralled with the park, we invited several of our friends from Northern Virginia to travel up to spend the day, and we became tour guides in exploring the park; they all greatly enjoyed the experience.

As Ansel Adams, a world-renowned photographer and friend of the National Parks, had remarked something to the effect … good photographs occur when you figure out the right place to stand. I spent a great deal of time looking for those “right places,” and part of the richness of the Catoctin is that the hiking journey gives as much inspiration as the destination, such as Chimney Rock or the Thurmont Vista. Most days, we walked six to ten miles within the park. With a full two weeks in the park, I never tired of exploring and heading out for more springtime photos, and yet the time raced by us until our departure on May 19.

Being in a National Park gives one time to get in touch with nature, and my time at Catoctin Mountain Park gave me that and much more. We had some time to explore other nearby areas, such as the covered bridges, the Seton Shrine, and the back roads, as well as the hospitality of the folks of Thurmont and the region. Even though the Residency came to an end too quickly, I have already made plans for more return visits, with the changing of the seasons at Catoctin. Since I took many images, one of the difficult and time-consuming tasks has been to edit my work down to the best ten to fifteen prints for future exhibitions. I am hopeful that people will respond to my work in ways that will benefit the park itself, such as new volunteers for Catoctin Park or the Catoctin Forest Alliance. I will also be exhibiting some of my photographs from the Catoctin experience at the ArtSpace Gallery in Herndon, Virginia, later this year.

More of my photographic images in individual galleries by subject matter can be found at

By artist Jim Schlett, taken in Camp Misty Mount, within 200 yards of his cabin. “The lighting at that early morning, with a light fog, created a sense of being invited in to the forest.”


James Rada, Jr.

Marines marched through Emmitsburg in 1922 on their way to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. They were fully outfitted in preparation for a historical reenactment and training maneuvers on the battlefield. The event turned tragic for two of the Marines when their plane crashed on the battlefield, killing both men on board.

On June 26, 2018, a memorial wayside, erected in Gettysburg to honor Marine Captain George W. Hamilton, a highly-decorated World War I Marine officer, and Gunnery Sergeant George R. Martin, was dedicated before a small crowd.

Marine Captain Hamilton, of World War I fame, survived the bloody Battle of Belleau Wood in 1918 (also known as the “Germans’ Gettysburg”), with honors, only to perish in a dive bomber crash on the Gettysburg Battlefield during Marine maneuvers held in 1922, along with Gunnery Sergeant Martin, a veteran of the Santo Domingo campaign.

On June 26, 1922, Captain Hamilton was piloting a de Havilland dive bomber over Gettysburg battlefield, with Martin, at the head of the column of 5,500 Marines arriving for training maneuvers and Civil War reenactments, when their airplane crashed while attempting to land on the Culp Farm, killing both aviators.

The deaths of the aviators were declared as line-of-duty deaths, resulting in their being the last such deaths to have occurred on the historic battlefield since the 1863 battle itself.

As part of the event, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has issued a proclamation declaring June 26, 2018, as Captain George W. Hamilton and Gunnery Sergeant George R. Martin Remembrance Day “in grateful recognition of their military service.”

Tammy Myers, president of the Gettysburg Heritage Center, said that the project to erect the memorial “was initiated and brought to us by our neighbors.” She said that the Heritage Center supported the project because it “tells a story beyond the typical Civil War story.”

The memorial is on property near the crash site and donated by the Gettysburg Heritage Center. The project began when Richard D. L. Fulton, co-author of The Last to Fall: The 1922 March, Battles, & Deaths of U.S. Marines at Gettysburg, happened to run into his neighbor, Ronald Frenette, who became the project manager of the memorial wayside. Both men live near the crash and talked about it. “Rick said we really should have a memorial for them, and the project was born,” said Frenette.

The memorial’s creation is the result of the efforts of Frenette, Fulton, Mike Tallent, Marine Corps League Gettysburg Battlefield Detachment #705, and the Gettysburg Heritage Center.

The memorial wayside is located at the corner of Culp Street and Johns Avenue, near the 1922 crash site.

Photo taken of Memorial Wayside near the 1922 crash site in Gettysburg, Courtesy of James Rada, Jr.

The new Seton Center Outreach Office and Seton Family Store are open for business. The Seton Center is not only serving as a community resource in Northern Frederick County, but it is demonstrating some of the best technologies in green and sustainable living.

“We wanted to be as earth-friendly as possible,” said Sister Martha Beaudoin, Seton Center Executive Director.

The building at 226 East Lincoln Avenue in Emmitsburg was dedicated and had a ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 10, 2018. Morgan-Keller Construction of Frederick served as the general contractor, building the 13,000-square-foot building designed by MSB Architects of Hagerstown. It houses the Outreach Office, Seton Family Store, and a large meeting room for workshops and presentations.

The most obvious energy-saving technology is the use of solar energy to power the entire building. The Seton Center has only electricity, which the solar panels power.

“Our first full month electric bill was a little more than $348,” said Sister Martha. “Our bill used to be about $600.”

An unseen improvement is that the building is insulated on the exterior, beneath the brick veneer.

Lighting in the store maintains a constant level of brightness and adjusts based on the natural light coming through the windows. Windows are tinted and have shades to help control how hot a room gets from sunlight. Lights have LED bulbs, and the lighting throughout the building is on motion-sensitive timers so that if no movement is detected for fifteen minutes, the lights in a room shut off.

“We don’t have to worry about leaving the lights on, but if I’m in my office and not moving around, the lights sometimes go off on me,” explained Sister Martha.

The parking lot uses permeable pavers to allow water to pass through it when it rains.

The Seton Center has dishwashers and reusable dishes so that throwaway plastic and paper plates and utensils aren’t needed.

The HVAC system also allows staff to control the amount of particulate matter indoors. Filters throughout the building collect particulates from the air.

“A lot of our staff have asthma problems, but they come in here, and they are fine,” Sister Martha said.

The toilets in the six bathrooms are all low-water usage, and the faucets are motion activated. Both features help reduce the water usage for the Seton Center.

All of these features are in a building that is attractive and welcoming to visitors. It replaces an old building on South Seton Avenue. That original building only had a ten-year lifespan, but it was used for more than sixty years.


Town Gets $30,000 Grant

During the July meeting of the Emmitsburg Mayor and Commissioners, Town Manager Cathy Willets announced that the town had received a $30,000 grant from the Maryland Department of the Environment. The grant was awarded because the town had been able to keep its nitrogen and phosphorus in the water to less than one part per million gallons. The money will be used to continue to improve and optimize the town’s water system.

ADA Playground Complete

The ADA-compliant playground in Emmit Gardens is complete, except for an ADA-compliant pathway to the park. The playground is designed to allow children with disabilities to enjoy activities in the park.

Cipplerly Retires

The July meeting of the Emmitsburg Mayor and Commissioners was the last one for Town Planner Sue Cipperly.

“Your work here has been a catalyst for our ongoing efforts to enhance the quality of life in Emmitsburg,” said Tim O’Donnell, president of the Board of Commissioners.

The new town planner, Zach Gulden, introduced himself to the mayor and commissioners. Gulden lives in Gettysburg and was the Freedom Township manager and Upper Allen Township planner. He has a master’s degree in public administration.


POS Projects Get Funding

Mayor Donald Briggs announced that Emmitsburg had received $191,000 out of $391,000 that the Frederick County municipalities had to share for Program Open Space (POS) projects.

Briggs said that the all-children play lot will receive $120,000 (77 percent of what the project could get), and the pool bathhouse renovations will receive $71,000 (100 percent of what the project could get).


For more information on the Town of Thurmont, visit or call the town office at 301-271-7313.
Note: The Thurmont Mayor and Board of Commissioners did not meet between June 26 and July 24.


Mayor Don Briggs

The new signs about the square, “Old Main Streets,” are part of the State of Maryland Tourism program. Its promotional anthem is: “Vibrant streets invite visitors to explore history, heritage, and architecture, while savoring the flavor of local shops, eateries, and lodging.” The signs accurately reflect the vibrancy enfolding in our downtown. The square is special again, not just something left to speed through. Embellished now with enhanced crosswalks, the Mount four-faced clock, flowers blooming, and the commemorative centerpiece to the fountain where it was once set. New businesses, possibly a new restaurant, and new homes are coming to our town. To the square sidewalk revitalization, “If you build it, they will come.” Our grant request from the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area for three interpretive signs for the old square fountain, Doughboy, and Emmit House was approved. The signs will be like those in other historic towns, on a stand that will contain a picture and a narrative for each landmark. Walk, walk, walk…the town is connected, so let’s get out of the cars and walk to the downtown and the parks.

Good to see landscaping going in around the square, and this fall will come the trees to complete the revitalization taking place up and down Main Street. Green soon will line our downtown. Our community parts of Pembrook Woods and Brookfield to the west are now connected by sidewalks, as are the homes along Route 140 west of the Doughboy. The approach coming into town from the west, looking up Main Street, now paralleled with sidewalks on both sides, is inviting.

The Farmers Market opened in June with thirteen vendors, fresh vegetables, and more. Stop by the farmers market on South Seton Avenue through September, Fridays, from 3:00–6:30 p.m.

Great initiative of the Emmitsburg Business and Professional Association on a trash pick-up brigade. Much appreciated. Thank you to that lady who weeds, waters, and picks up trash around the square. She’s back at it for, what, the sixth year?

Great to have a pool. Great to have a new pool. In all, 437 swimmers used the pool on Community Heritage Day in the first month. Over 5,700 sun lover’s made trips to the pool, almost tripling the 2016 same period of use. Thank you to those who choose to make those anonymous gifts so that families can use the new pool this summer. Also, thank you to our town staff for all the hard, high-pressure work needed to make sure the pool was finished for the summer season. With a pool and a 14-mile multi-use trail, exercise trail, and dog park, very few towns offer the passive and active recreational choices of Emmitsburg.

Final Pool Party will be Friday, August 17, from 6:00–8:00 p.m. Cost is a $1.00 admission. The party will feature a DJ, free hot dogs, lemonade, and maybe McDonald’s hamburgers.

We had wonderful summer visits from the Frederick Rescue Mission summer campers. All forty-eight strong. The first visit started off in the Community Park pavilion with a magic show by our Michael Cantori, pizza from Stavros for lunch, and then up to the pool. On the second visit, there was a stop at the Carriage House for lunch and dining etiquette lessons, then up to the Frederick County Fire Rescue Museum and National Fire Heritage Center. One more visit is scheduled for an August swim.

The Town election is coming up at the end of September, with two, three-year term council member seats. The deadline to file is 4:00 p.m. on August 27.

Farewell to our planner Sue Cipperly. After a decade with the town, she is retiring. Her role as an umpire calling the balls and strikes for development expanded to grant writing and being a part of the Square-sidewalk project. Job, well done! Her attention to detail will be hard to replace.

Welcome to Zachary R. Gulden, our new town planner. Zach holds a B.S. and MPA degrees.

It’s summer. Enjoy. Be careful in your travels.


Mayor John Kinnaird

We have been having wild weather so far this year. Recently, two sets of thunderstorms managed to knock out some of our electric service. These outages can be very inconvenient, regardless of how quickly power is restored. When power goes out, you can call the town to report the outage by dialling 301-271-7313. After regular business hours, you will be instructed as to how to speak to an electric department employee. Please keep in mind that after power goes out many people are calling to report the outage, and, more than likely, our crew is aware of the situation. It can take some time for our crew to come in and get their trucks out, then it can take some time to identify the problem and repair the damages. I am happy to report that outages in Thurmont are repaired fairly quickly due to the size of our service area and our hardworking crew. We have also had several heavy rains recently that caused flooding of several streets. This flooding is something we have little control over, other than to close flooded roads to traffic. If you come upon a flooded road, especially one that has barricades, please do not attempt to drive through the water. Remember, when you encounter flooded roads: Turn around, don’t drown!

The summer brings with it long outdoor days, working or playing. When you are outdoors, please wear sunscreen and a hat. Be especially careful with children, and make sure they have sufficient sunscreen while outdoors playing or swimming. A childhood sunburn can lead to skin cancer later in life. When we were young, sun block was not as available as it is today, and many of us now suffer from skin cancers that were preventable. Do your kids a favor and make sure they are protected while outdoors;they will thank you for it later in life.

The Thurmont Main Street Farmers Market is held every Saturday morning, from 9:00 a.m.-noon. There is always a great selection of locally grown produce, fruit, locally raised Red Angus beef, local pork products, fresh cut flowers, delicious baked goods, jams, and many handcrafted goodies. Be sure to get there early for the best selection, and bring your friends!

This summer, there will be two carnivals in Thurmont, something we older residents remember from years ago. The Thurmont Community Ambulance Service will be hosting a carnival at its Events Complex, located on Strafford Drive in Thurmont. The carnival will be held from August 21 through August 25, and will feature live entertainment, nightly. Kids will enjoy all-you-can-ride fun for one low price each evening. There will be a nightly buffet, homemade food, games, and raffles. I hope to see you there.

As always, you can contact me with questions, concerns, or complements at 301-606-9458 or at

Up & Out Foundation, Inc. 5th Annual Run for Recovery Run/Walk

On Saturday, August 18, 2018, the Up & Out Foundation, Inc., a Frederick-based non-profit, will host the 5th Annual Run for Recovery 5K Run/Walk at Monocacy Village Park in Frederick, from 8:00-11:00 a.m. The Up & Out Foundation, Inc. is committed to educating the public about the disease of addiction, the consequences of untreated addiction, and the process of recovery. Those involved with the foundation are actively involved in the community to dispel the myths and reduce the stigma associated with addiction by sharing stories and celebrating the success of recovery. The foundation funds those in the community who are in active addiction and need assistance towards treatment, housing, and Vivitrol shots.

The Run for Recovery is a fun event to bring our community together. This is a great opportunity for you to promote your business while supporting a great cause through sponsorship of this very successful event. The money raised will go back into the community to help those struggling with addiction and to provide resources to help prevent active addiction. The funds will be used to host a reception following the Drug Court graduation, provide gifts for the Drug Court graduates, and provide “Blessing Bags” for the addicted homeless. In addition, we also offer scholarships for those in recovery who are transitioning from rehab into a sober living environment. We appreciate your consideration, and we hope we can count on you to support our mission.

The public is encouraged to attend this event. For more information about the event, connect with Up & Out Foundation, Inc. on Facebook and Instagram. Sponsorship opportunities are listed and Eventbrite tickets can be purchased using this link:

View the advertisement on page 24 for additional information.

Emmitsburg Vendor & Craft Event at Vigilant Hose Company 6

The Vigilant Hose Company’s Vendor & Craft Event will be held on Saturday, November 24, 2018, from 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m., at the Vigilant Hose Company’s Activities Building on Creamery Road in Emmitsburg. Crafters and vendors wanted. View the advertisement on page 22 for contact information.

Quarter Auction for Breast Cancer Patient

On Saturday, August 18, 2018, a Quarter Auction will be held at the Thurmont American Legion. Doors open at 11:00 a.m., and biding starts at noon. Event will feature raffles, food, a cash bar, and more! Come out to support a cancer patient fighting to win her life. View the advertisement on page 11 for more information.

Festival at St. John’s UCC

Come out on August 18, 2018, to the Festival at St. John’s UCC in Sabillasville. The Festival begins at 3:00 p.m. and features food, pony rides, games for kids, raffles, live entertainment, and much more! View the advertisement on page 33 for more information.

Keysville Grace UCC’s Community Day & Antique Tractor Display

Don’t miss all the fun at the Keysville Grace UCC’s Community Day & Antique Tractor Display on Saturday, August 18, 2018, from 12:00-4:00 p.m., featuring tractors, food, music, and more! View the advertisement on page 45 for more information.

Thurmont Ambulance Carnival at Event Complex

The Thurmont Ambulance Carnival will be held at the Event Complex in Thurmont on August 21-25, 2018. Ride all night for one low price, plus games, raffles, live music, and more! View the advertisement on page 3 for more information.

Vigilant Hose Company’s Bingo Bash

Reserve your tickets today for the Vigilant Hose Company’s Bingo Bash on September 15, 2018. Doors will open at 4:00 p.m., with games beginning at 7:00 p.m. Get your ticket by August 31 and be entered to win $100 cash! View the advertisement on page 11 for more information and for how to purchase your tickets.

11th Annual 5K Trail Walk & 10K Trail Run at ThorpeWood

Register today for ThorpeWood’s 11th Annual 5K Trail Walk & 10K Trail Run on Sunday, September 9, 2018, from 8:00-11:00 a.m., at ThorpeWood in Thurmont. View the advertisement on page 15 for registration information.

Graceham Volunteer Fire Company’s 30 Days – 30 Guns

Get your tickets for Graceham Volunteer Fire Company’s 30 Days – 30 Guns September 2018 Lottery fundraiser. Firearms supplied by Stateline Gun Exchange LLC. View the advertisement for more details and for ticket contact information. View the advertisement on page 22 for contact information.

Rocky Ridge Carnival

You won’t want to miss the Rocky Ridge Carnival at Mt. Tabor Park in Rocky Ridge, beginning on August 13 through August 18, 2018, featuring live entertainment every night, beginning at 7:00 p.m., and a parade on August 15 at 7:00 p.m. View the advertisement on page 6 for more information.

Town of Emmitsburg Election

Two commissioner seats are up for election in Emmitsburg. Come out to vote on Tuesday, September 25, 2018, at 22 East Main Street in Emmitsburg, from 7:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. The last day to register to vote in Frederick County is August 27. In addition, Election judges are needed for the September election. View the advertisements on page 25 for more information.

Gospel & Blue Grass Music Festival

You won’t want to miss the Gospel & Blue Grass Music Festival on Saturday, September 22, 2018, from 1:00-6:00 p.m., featuring local talents and fine blue grass music by the Carroll County Ramblers and Hanover Express. Admission is free. View the advertisement on page 17 for more information.

Car & Truck Show

The Thurmont Ladies Auxiliary Car & Truck Show will be held on Sunday, August 26, 2018, at the Guardian Hose Activities Building in Thurmont, from 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. The event will also feature food, music, raffles, Chinese auction, and more! View the advertisement on page 33 for more information.

Gateway to the Cure 5K Run/Walk

Register now for the Gateway to the Cure 5K Run/Walk on September 15, 2018! The run starts at 8:30 a.m. at Eyler Road Park in Thurmont. View the advertisement on page 14 for more details and information on how to register.

Annual Labor Day Festival

Bring the entire family out to the annual Labor Day Festival at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish in Thurmont on Monday, September 3, 2018, from noon-5:00 p.m. Festival features family-style dinner, raffles, bake sale, Bingo, 50/50, live music, and much more! View the advertisement on page 39 for more information.

Gospel Concert at Deerfield UMC

Don’t miss the Gospel Concert on Sunday, August 19, 2018, at 2:00 p.m., at Deerfield United Methodist Church in Sabillasville, featuring Keystone State Quartet. View the advertisement on page 11 for more information.

62nd Annual Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show

Don’t miss the event that has been bringing the communities together since 1957: the Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show! The Show is being held on September 7-9, 2018, at Catoctin High School in Thurmont. Each day is packed with exhibits, contests, shows, food, activities, and much more! View the advertisement on page 3 for more details and for exhibit entry information.

Sportsman’s Bingo at Rocky Ridge Vol. Fire Company

Mark your calendar for the Rocky Ridge Volunteer Fire Company’s Sportsman’s Bingo on Saturday, September 8, 2018. Doors will open at 4:00 p.m., with the meal at 5:00 p.m. and bingo starting at 6:30 p.m. Only 200 tickets will be sold! View the advertisement on page 14 to find out how to get your tickets.

Lewistown Fire Department Sportsman’s Bingo

Mark your calendar now for Saturday, November 10, 2018, for the Lewistown Fire Department Sportsman Bingo. Doors will open at 4:00 p.m., with the buffet at 6:00 p.m. and games beginning at 7:30 p.m. View the advertisement on page 4 for more information and for how to purchase your tickets today.

Yard Sale

Don’t miss the Yard Sale on August 18, 2018, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Creagerstown, from 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Spaces are available for just $10.00. View the advertisement on page 14 for more information.

Germantown Church of God Community Picnic

The Germantown Church of God in Cascade is holding a Community Picnic on Saturday, August 11, 2018, at 3:00 p.m. Bring the whole family out for games, free food, free school supplies, and more! View the advertisement on page 19 for more details.

Pippinfest – 38th Annual Craft Show

Come out for two days of fun, pony rides, food, crafts, Cruise-in Car Show & Swap Meet, live entertainment, and much more at Pippinfest on September 23-24, 2018, in historic Fairfield, Pennsylvania. Free admission and parking! View the advertisement on page 39 for more information.

Annual Big Picnic at Mount Tabor Park

Bring the whole family out to the Annual Big Picnic at Mount Tabor Park in Rocky Ridge on August 11, 2018, from 3:00-9:00 p.m. This fun event features live music, food, a baby show, and more! View the advertisement on page 26 for more information.

Calling All Farmers & Tractor Enthusiasts

Join Deer Run Farm for a free scenic tractor ride on the backroads of Rocky Ridge, Emmitsburg, and Keymar on Saturday, August 18, 2018, at 10:00 a.m. At the end of ride, enjoy food, drinks, music, and more! View the advertisement on page 30 for more information on what you need to bring, where the ride begins and ends, and how to register to ride.

Thurmont Event Complex Friday Night Bingo

Come out to the Thurmont Event Complex on Friday nights for Friday Night Bingo. Doors open at 5:00 p.m.; games start at 7:00 p.m. The kitchen is open for food purchases. View advertisement on page 5 for more information.

Annual James H. Mackley Golf Day Seeking Golfers & Sponsors

The annual James H. Mackley Golf Day, being held on September 21, 2018, is seeking golfers and sponsors. View the advertisement on page 48 for contact information.

Elizabeth Swindells

Chris Mills has been “in the biz,” the plumbing business, for twenty-seven years. He started working with his father after he graduated high school. Over the years, he has worked for multiple plumbing companies and gained valuable experience. Six months ago, he took that experience and opened his own plumbing company, Precision Plumbing, serving Maryland and Pennsylvania.

“I got to the point that I was tired of making other people money, and I decided it was time to start making my own,” said Chris.

Chris is keeping up the tradition of a “family business.” His only other employee is his son, Indy. Indy, a college student and a wrestling coach, works part-time with Chris. Chris’ intention is to keep his business small and focused on serving the community on a smaller scale. Being just a two-man business, customer service is a major point of interest for Precision Plumbing.

As a small company, with lower overhead, he is able to offer fair rates and 24/7 service. If there is a plumbing emergency, he is available at all hours of the day and night to control the situation. Chris also offers a 10 percent discount to both seniors and active military personnel. Chris genuinely cares to serve and give back to his community.

Although he prefers residential service, he also has extensive experience in commercial plumbing. He offers all general plumbing, but specializes in water treatment. “I enjoy doing neutralizers and water softeners.”

Chris explained that water treatment involves, “Filtering the water to take out any calcium and neutralizing the acidity in the water.” You’ll notice calcium as a crusty build-up on your drains. With this build up, your clothes may be “hard” and your skin and hair may be dry.

If you’re in need of water treatment, give Chris a call! He will be happy to help. He also does the repair, replacement, and installation of faucets, toilets, water lines, well pumps, and so much more. Contact Chris at 717-778-8429 or by email: Check out Precision Plumbing’s advertisement on page 4.

Pictured is Chris Mills, owner of Precision Plumbing.

Blair Garrett

A breath of fresh air has blown in to Emmitsburg’s Quality Tire and Auto, where new owner Ron Walter has continued to push consistency in a business that has been running for over forty years.

Former owner Bob Mort left big shoes to fill, but Ron and his wife, Maureen, have hit the ground running after taking over ownership in June 2018.

“There’re lots of people who come in and wonder where Bob went,” Walter said. “It’s good to let them know we’re going to help them and keep it a tire business.”

In a small town, it can be difficult to find a knowledgeable mechanic that people trust who will offer them good service and a fair deal. Choosing the right auto mechanic can often be a life-long professional relationship. Walter has managed to calm speculation that Quality Tire might close down, offering locals who have been serviced at the company prior to his arrival the quality they have come to expect.

“Everyone was afraid it was just going to close down, and all the local people were going to be without someone to help them,” Walter said. “So, we’ve been able to take over that and hopefully be able to continue the same thing Bob was doing.”

While the business is still brand new for the Walter family, the two have big plans for Quality Tire and Auto in the near future. “We haven’t gotten into auto repairs yet; we are waiting to get more organized and clean up to make more room. Once we do, we’re probably going to get into auto repairs.”

Walter spent the past thirty-five years as a mechanic, honing his skills that ultimately led him to take the reins as owner of his own business. But, even though Walter boasts a lifetime of experience, the transition to becoming a first-time business owner can be tough to adjust to without a solid support system.

Fortunately for Ron and Maureen, who are Thurmont residents, business has been steady enough to grease the wheels heading into the family’s new role. “It’s been so busy, we haven’t really had a lot of time to think about it,” said Walter.

As the two begin to settle into being first-time business owners, and as customers continue lining up for all of their tire services, the move has inspired a bit of confidence about the future of Quality Tire and Auto.

“I was a little worried about the transition, but everything went really smoothly, and Ron has picked up on everything so well,” said Maureen Walter.

Despite the whirlwind of changes over the past two months, all signs point to Quality Tire and Auto keeping the local tire business thriving for years to come. Call Quality Tire for more information at 301-447-2909 or visit the station at 17650 Creamery Road in Emmitsburg.

Pictured is Ron Walter, new owner of Quality Tire and Auto in Emmitsburg.

Blair Garrett

Tucked away in the mountains of northern Maryland lies a hidden gem not visible to the naked eye.

A combination of fine attention to detail and a deep appreciation of outer space has Yugen Tribe of Emmitsburg creating intricate keepsakes and jewelry for people around the world.

While the company’s reach has expanded to nearly every country on the planet, the business originally started on the shoulders of one woman, Lauren Beacham. “It started almost eleven years ago,” she said. “I was working as a gallery director in Frederick. I started making jewelry out of my own photographs, and it just started getting more and more popular. Eventually, I was able to quit my job and do it full time.”

Beacham’s artistic background paired beautifully with her scientific interests, building the foundation for her business to become what it is today. “I started designing jewelry about outer space, which was very niche, and I had no idea how it was going to go, but it really took off.”

Yugen Tribe’s variety of space-inspired jewelry has been featured in magazines, catalogs, and science-dedicated websites, catapulting its popularity into the stratosphere. “We started getting attention from very big catalogs, museums, companies, internet phenomenon, and it totally took off.”

With the ever-growing influx of business opportunities and demand of production, Beacham decided to branch out. She put the fourteen-hour workdays behind her, bringing in fellow science enthusiast Brittany Elbourn to help balance the vast needs of the business.

“It’s a combination of production, design, marketing, and customer service,” explained Beacham. “It’s just us two and we do everything.”

Between handling personal items for customers and the nearly six-month-long production boom for the holidays, the women of Yugen Tribe continue to find time to design new and interesting pieces for jewelry lovers everywhere.

In addition to the space-themed necklaces and bracelets, Yugen Tribe has worked on a line of heirloom pieces that provide special memories for their customers.

“We take customer photographs and put them into our jewelry, which tends to be more on the vintage side of things,” Beacham said. “We also do memorial stuff. A really popular seller is a bouquet charm. If a bride’s father passed away, she’ll send us his photograph; we’ll set it into this brooch (shown above), which she can attach to her bouquet, so he can still walk her down the aisle.”

The personal touch of these items seems to be the catalyst for the Tribe’s online success. The stories from customers behind personalized pieces give meaning to the work Yugen Tribe does. This builds a relationship that would normally be lost through a large corporation. “They share personal stories about who these people were to them,” Elbourn said. “It makes you feel connected to people.”

Despite all of the personal success for the duo, there has always been a major focus on giving back to the community and growing businesses. “One of the other things I really like doing is supporting other small businesses, especially women-owned businesses,” Beacham said. Yugen Tribe gives back quarterly, donating money to various organizations, including The Planetary Society, The Nature Conservancy, and The National Humane Society.

Developing a new business and taking the plunge to put all efforts into a new business can be a daunting task. For Beacham, her skill set gave her a unique talent that turned her ideas and creativity into a profession. Space-inspired jewelry is a hard market to crack, but fortunately, she has learned quite a bit along the way.

“It could turn out to be a total failure or it could be really amazing,” said Beacham. “But it turns out, the world is a whole lot nerdier than we thought.”

For more information about Yugen Tribe, please call 240-415-8137 or email

Pictured is Lauren Beachman, Yugen Tribe creater and owner.

A bouquet charm, one of the many unique keepsakes and jewelry designed and created at Yugen Tribe.

Photos Courtesy of Yugen Tribe

James Rada, Jr.

Thurmont got its day before the camera as Good Day DC on FOX 5 in Washington, D.C., spent the morning of July 13, 2018, filming in town. The hosts and crew of the television show traveled to Thurmont and broadcasted from various locations around the town from 6:00-11:00 a.m.

“Our whole purpose in participating was to expose Thurmont and north county to millions of viewers,” said Vickie Grinder, economic development manager for Thurmont.

To be considered for one of the “zip trips,” Grinder had to submit a portfolio of information about Thurmont to FOX 5 last year. It included a list of events, history of the town, places to visit, and much more.

“It was a lot, but as a town, we had all these great things to show them,” explained Grinder.

The announcement of the 15 trips was made in May. One location is visited each Friday during the summer. Grinder said that to the best of her knowledge, Thurmont is the smallest town that the crew has visited. “Thurmont shined just as much, if not more than those larger places.”

Zip Trips showcase local restaurants, schools, and businesses. They interview members of the community who come out to watch the broadcast and host lots of activities.

Hosts Tucker Barnes, Maureen Umeh, and Annie Yu set up their central location at the open field next to PNC Bank on East Main Street.

Some of the other locations and people featured were:  Mechanicstown Park; Gateway Brass Ensemble, directed by Morris Blake;  Linda Elower, ESP dance director; Timeless Trends; Eyler Family Stables; Cunningham Falls State Park; Thurmont Police Chief Greg Eyler; Mayor John Kinnaird; Josh Bollinger, Bollinger’s Family Restaurant; Tony Testa, Rocky’s Pizza; Cindy Grimes, J&B Real Estate; Thurmont Little League coaches and players; and Sam Feng, owner of Simply Asia.

Kinnaird was quizzed on Thurmont trivia, although he was given the questions and answers ahead of time.

“I think I would have scored 100 percent even without the answers,” stated Kinnaird.

The eventual hope of Grinder and Kinnaird is that people will see the segments about Thurmont and decide to visit. The afternoon of the broadcast, Grinder heard that someone had seen the show and visited Eyler Family Stables Flea Market, which was included in a list of the five stops that visitors need to make while in Thurmont. Grinder also said that during the weekend after the broadcast she received five emails requesting more information about the town.

Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird poses with FOX 5 Good Day DC’s Annie Yu and Maureen Umeh at the filming in Thurmont on the morning of July 13, 2018.

Photo Courtesy of

The 62nd Annual Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show will be held at Catoctin High School, located at 14745 Sabillasville Road in Thurmont, on September 7-9, 2018.  All events, activities, and entertainment are free.

Free entry of exhibits will take place on Thursday evening, September 6, from 6:00-9:00 p.m., and on Friday, September 7, from 8:30-11:30 a.m., in the new gymnasium and in the Ag Center. Judging will begin at 12:30 p.m. Commercial exhibits may be entered on Friday, September 7, from 3:30-5:30 p.m. The show will open to the public at 6:00 p.m.

On Friday night, September 7, the opening ceremonies will begin at 7:00 p.m. in the auditorium, where the 2018-2019 Catoctin FFA Chapter Ambassador will be announced. In addition, this year’s program will feature the 42nd Annual Community Flag Ceremony and honor Catoctin High School’s 50th anniversary. At 8:15 p.m., the annual Baked Goods Auction will begin immediately following the program, with the Grand Champion Cake, Pie, and Bread sold at 9:00 p.m. Buyers are welcome to purchase baked good items to support the Community Show and many local organizations.

On Saturday, September 8, the Community Show is open from 9:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.  Activities include a Market Goat, Beef, Sheep and Swine Fitting & Showing Contest in the Ag Center, from 8:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. In the front lawn of the school at 10:00 a.m., there will be a Pet Care Seminar by Dr. Jonathan Bramson of the Catoctin Veterinary Clinic, immediately followed by the Pet Show at 10:30 a.m. A petting zoo, farm animals, and pony rides will also be held on Saturday and Sunday in the upper parking lot area, from 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.

The Thurmont Academy of Self Defense will present a martial arts program in the small gymnasium at 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 8, and the Elower-Sicilia Productions Dance Program will have a 3:00 p.m. program in the auditorium.

The Thurmont Grange will serve its turkey and country ham supper in the school cafeteria, from 3:00-7:00 p.m. on Saturday night, September 8. Prices are: $13.00 for adults and $7.00 for ages under twelve. Carryouts are $14.00. In the auditorium at 4:30 p.m., an Open Mic Showcase of Talent by local teen performers will be held. At 6:00 p.m., the Catoctin Mountain Boys will feature musical entertainment. At 7:00 p.m., the Taylor Brown’s Elvis Tribute Show will be held.

On Saturday night, the 44th Annual Catoctin FFA Alumni Beef, Sheep & Swine Sale will begin at 7:00 p.m. in the Ag Center, selling approximately 8 goats, 22 swine, 10 sheep, and 9 beef steers. Buyers are welcome and encouraged to attend.

On Sunday, September 9, activities begin at 9:00 a.m. with the Dairy Goat Show, followed by the Dairy Cattle Show.

At noon on Sunday, the Catoctin FFA Alumni Chicken Bar-B-Que will be held in the cafeteria. Prices are: $10.00 for adults and $7.00 for ages under twelve. Carryouts are $11.00. A Kiddie Pedal Tractor Pull will be held at 12:30 p.m. in the Ag Center area.

In the auditorium, the Catoctin Mountain Boys will feature musical entertainment at 12:30 p.m., and the Taylor Brown’s Elvis Tribute Show will be held at 1:30 p.m. The 35th Annual Catoctin Mountain Log Sawing Contest will be held at 1:00 p.m. in the Ag Center, with classes for adults and children. The 39th Annual Robert Kaas Horseshoe Pitching Contest will begin at 1:00 p.m. on the softball field behind the school.

Exhibits must be removed on Sunday, September 9, from 3:00-6:00 p.m. Any exhibits not removed may be picked up from the school’s Agriculture Center on Tuesday, September 11, from 9:00 a.m.-noon.

By early August, the Community Show booklets can be found in local Thurmont and Emmitsburg area businesses. New residents of the community are urged to enter exhibits—and it is free to enter—and be a part of the Community Show, the largest in the State of Maryland. Please note rule and class changes to Dept. 12’s Arts, Painting & Drawing and Dept. 13’s Arts & Crafts Departments, as well as minor changes to several departments this year. Departments include: Fresh Fruits, Fresh Vegetables, Home Products Display, Canned Fruits, Canned Vegetables, Jellies & Preserves, Pickles, Meats, Baked Products, Sewing & Needlework, Flowers & Plants, Arts, Paintings & Drawings, Crafts, Photography, Corn, Small Grains and Seeds, Eggs, Nuts, Poultry & Livestock, Dairy, Goats, Hay, Junior Department and Youth Department.

Please visit the Community Show’s website for the entry exhibit list, schedule of events, and more information at:

The Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show is sponsored by the Thurmont Grange, Catoctin FFA Chapter, Catoctin FFA Alumni, Maryland State Grange, and the Maryland State Agricultural Fair Board.