IT'S THE final countdown for Savage Fest - Savage's annual celebration. This year, it is a two-day event, to be held June 2 and 3 at Baldwin Commons, at Foundry and Baltimore streets.
Among the activities planned is a parade. Jason Kindel of the Howard County Police Department will be grand marshal. A resident of Savage, Kindel was honored as the Community Service Officer in 1999 and as Police Officer of the Year in 2000.
Once the parade reaches Baldwin Commons, the festival begins. There will be artisans, food and day-long entertainment.
The pony rides return, as does the giant slide (it's decorated to look like the deck of the Titanic.) New this year is the Bunny Buckets, a whirling ride not for the faint of heart.
Part of what makes the festival popular is the participation of so many groups. This year, in conjunction with the festival, Bethel Assembly of God will hold its Health Fair on June 2. Mission Optician's mobile eye-exam bus will offer vision screenings.
Also as part of the festival, the Red Cross will run a blood drive.
Savage United Methodist Church will participate as well, with its Strawberry Festival on June 2. Church members will serve homemade strawberry shortcake and ice cream.
Alberta Gary United Methodist Church will run the children's games at the fair.
On June 3, an antique car show will be held. Proud owners will show off their favorite vehicles.
Both days will feature continuous stage performances, raffles, games, a visit by McGruff the Crime Dog and amusements such as car bashing - during which you can smash a car with a sledge hammer to raise funds for the Fire Department.
It's a weekend event not to be missed.
To reserve a craft table: Ellen Waff, 301-725-1089. Information about participating in the fair or parade: Corrinne Arnold, 301-725-4959. To volunteer during the festival: Jennifer Weaver, 301-317-1916.
Redoing the kitchen
Susan Morris of Canterbury Riding, a Scaggsville development, is organizing the Friends of Montpelier Live Auction, scheduled in late September.
A former Department of Defense employee, Morris began volunteering as a docent at the Colonial-era mansion four years ago.
"A friend of mine got me into this, and I was trapped," she said of her years of service and recent election as vice president of the Friends of Montpelier.
Montpelier Mansion in Laurel is mostly furnished as it would have been between the late Colonial era - George Washington really did sleep there - and 1831, when the owner, Nicholas Snowden, died.
An inventory taken that year has helped guide historians in restoring the house.
The original kitchen was in one of the wings of the Georgian-style house. Over the years, this room has been remodeled. Today, it is a reception area.
The Friends of Montpelier had hoped to establish a working kitchen in the house or, as was more common in the Colonial era, in an outbuilding nearby.
The dream is coming to fruition. With the help of Chris Wagnon of the Maryland National Capital Area Parks and Planning Commission (which owns the mansion and surrounding grounds) a kitchen is to be built in the carriage house.
The commission is fitting out the room with bricks and other materials recycled from ruins. The Friends of Montpelier is furnishing the interior.
"We do have a little bit of money," Morris said. "Not nearly enough. All these things are very expensive. We'll have a combination of antiques and reproductions - things that have to be fitted."
An antiques collector, Morris is keeping an eye out for items similar to those in the 1831 inventory. Among them is a quail oven - a small oven fitted out with hooks inside to roast a dozen birds for dinner.
The group also seeks a sturdy kitchen table, dressers and sideboards that would have been in such a kitchen, as well as pitchers, bowls, Dutch ovens and other paraphernalia necessary to prepare meals.
The goal is to have a demonstration kitchen that visitors can walk through.
The docents also plan to hold more hands-on workshops for school groups and Scouts. "We hope this will be a teaching tool for visitors," Morris said.
The live auction will be held Sept. 29 at the mansion; John Whitman will be the auctioneer.
The Friends of Montpelier are looking for contributions to make this event a success. Don Dalphonse and Debbie Funkhauser, two members charged with canvassing businesses, are looking for donations ranging from antiques (a favorite among this crowd of amateur historians) to restaurant vouchers and gift certificates.
If spring is in the air, surely someone is doing spring cleaning. The issue, of course, is what to do with all that unwanted stuff. The folks at Savage United Methodist Church have a solution - sell it. The church is holding a yard sale at 8 a.m. tomorrow.
Vendors who need a table can rent one for $10. The church is at Baltimore and Foundry streets in Savage.
Stephen Ricketts, for two years the pastoral intern at Emmanuel United Methodist Church of Scaggsville, has graduated from Wesley Seminary. He is leaving Emmanuel to serve as associate pastor at Damascus-Friendship United Methodist Church in July.