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August Quarterly: The Nation's Oldest African American Festival

Posted By: Ella

Updated - Monday, Jul 28, 2014 9:19 AM

Posted - Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 12:00 AM

August Quarterly Festival 2013The August Quarterly (often referred to as the Big Quarterly") was started in 1814 by Peter Spencer. This is the nation's oldest African American Festival celebrating religious freedom, freedom of speech and the right of assembly.

Here is some history on the African independent church movement:

"The African independent church movement began some years before the Big Quarterly festival. In 1805, Peter Spencer, born in captivity, but who at that time had his freedom, led a group of approximately 40 people out of the predominately white Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church. Although Spencer and the others started a separate church at that time, they remained connected to the white denomination under uncompromising guidelines. by 1813, Peter Spencer and William Anderson, another leader with Spencer, led a group of persons to leave the church to organize the Union Church of African Members in September 1813. The Big Quarterly is a commemoration and celebration of that religious exodus."

 

August Quarterly


Come share in the heritage and enjoy the August Quarterly in downtown Wilmington at the Harriet-Tubman Riverfront Park. There are activities for children and adults with music, vendors and fun for all ages.

August QuarterlyFor me, I have enjoyed attending in the past; the program consists of prayer services rotated among the largest black churches in Wilmington, Delaware. The annual celebration lasts for a week. Some of the churches are Mother AUFCMP at 9TH and Franklin Streets, Mother Bethel and Ezion Mount Carmel on Walnut Street. Preachers come from various states to conduct services emphasizing their lack of communication of knowledge which caused the slaves to remain an additional year in servitude. However, the emphasis is placed on education, communication and efforts never to repeat the past.

I love to attend all of the services and have found the themes of the gospels related not only to former slaves and slave holders but also were relevant to the multi-cultural nation in which we live today. Family values and relationships are stressed. Also encouraged was the need for innovation and excellence in whatever field was chosen now that everyone has to compete worldwide. It is a message that must be heard, respected, and implemented.

Attendance is always good and in most cases, standing room only in churches with capacity of around 200 people. People of all races and ages attend.

AUGUST QUARTERLY - August 24- 31, 2014

Ella McDougall
Membership Assistant
Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau

 

About Ella:
I'm Ella McDougall and I am the Membership Assistant for the Greater Wilmington Convention & Visitors Bureau. I've enjoyed working at the GWCVB for 17 years. As an art lover, the Bureau opens the door for a greater appreciation for the arts. I enjoy visiting the many museums, variety of festivals and lots more. I hope you will enjoy reading my blog!
 
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Middletown Delaware’s Beloved Peach Festival is Back for the 21st Time

Posted By: Cynthia

Updated - Monday, Jul 28, 2014 8:54 AM

Posted - Monday, Jul 28, 2014 12:00 AM

Middletown Peach FestivalThe rain or shine Peach Festival in Middletown, Delaware can now officially claim its place on the list of long-running New Castle County festivals! The 2014 Peach Festival will take place on Saturday, August 16th.

This delightful extravaganza is an ode to a refreshing fuzzy fruit and the perfect excuse to spend a whole day under the summer sun. The festival itself is somewhat interactive' attendees can watch or participate in a parade, a car show, a peach pie contest and much more. Local artists will be dropping in sporadically and music will flow out over the streets for all to enjoy. The 2013 Middletown Peach Festival boasted an attendance of upwards from 30,000 people.

If you're an artist, it is also an excellent place to get discovered by the 2014 peach-loving audience. Whether you're a diehard Delawarean or you're traveling in from out of town, attending the Middletown Peach Festival is a great way to stay in the summer groove.

How to Get to the Middletown Peach Festival

Peach FestivalThis year's festival will be taking place between Main Street and N. Cass St. and both streets will be closed off to accommodate the event. The Middletown peach parade is scheduled to commence promptly at 9 AM heading down Broad Street where festival goers can rifle through craft booths and historical exhibits.

If you're heading in from up north, take 95 S. to exit 1A, merging onto DE-896 S. Approximately 10 miles after merging you will cross over S. Summit Bridge Rd. making a slight left onto North Broad Street. If you're making your way from Maryland or even further south, take I-95 North to DE-896 S. in New Castle County and continue on DE-896 S. until you've crossed South Summit Bridge Road where you will make a slight left onto North Broad Street.

Bear in mind the fact that many of the streets within close vicinity of the festival will be shut down for the parade. Early arrival could help you to save time when parking on a side street.

Notable Mentions

While the parade and, of course, the peaches are the central attractions of this festival, other notable mentions include:

  • The Car Show
  • The Crafting
  • Food
  • Recreational Games
  • Live Music
  • Historical and Art Exhibits

Vending space is still available and parade entry forms are still being accepted. No matter how you choose to participate, you're guaranteed to have a grand time at the 21st annual Middletown Peach Festival.



About the Author: Cynthia Griffith (the great, great, granddaughter of James Fennimore Cooper, author of Last of the Mohicans) got her start in the freelance world as a songwriter and today is an avid blogger for LuxiaSuites and other local Wilmington businesses. She enjoys blogging about events, shops and restaurants in her community and proudly supports all local nonprofit organizations. Follow her on Google+ for the local scoop on Wilmington and surrounding areas.


 
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The Costumes of Downton Abbey

Posted By: Linda

Updated - Tuesday, Jul 15, 2014 10:16 AM

Posted - Tuesday, Jul 15, 2014 12:00 AM

Attention Downton Abbey fans!

Downton Abbey - Sisters at WeddingYou must plan a visit to Wilmington and Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library to see the Costumes of Downton Abbey exhibition.

I went to see the exhibition recently and I could have stayed all day browsing through the amazing collection of costumes directly from the Downton Abbey television series.  So much to see including several memorable short film clips of the show.  I was mesmerized by the romantic scene of when Mathew finally proposed to Lady Mary on that beautiful starry night...oh my, it just took my breath away!  I could have watched it over and over!  And many visitors did.

My hat goes off to the staff at Winterthur for a special look at how the fictional Crawley family lives at Downton Abbey in merry old England in all the grace and style as the PBS show depicts. You even get a behind the scenes comparison look at how the duPont family lived in America right here in Winterthur,   Delaware during the show's time period.

Downton Abbey - Lord GranthamI'm not only a fan of the Downton Abbey story line and period piece but I also sew and love seeing up close the live-styles of the time period and the beautiful period clothing the actors wore on the show right down to all  the accessories, furniture and furnishings.  It is fun to imagine going back in-time and living like the Crawley's or the duPont family.

Don't forget to visit the gift shop that is stocked with gifts, Downton Abbey souvenirs and some very impressive cloths and accessories for sale.  I couldn't leave without a Downton Abbey t-shirt!  I do plan to go back before the exhibition ends.  I highly recommend that you visit Winterthur Museum, Gardens & Library and make a reservation to see the Costumes of Downton Abbey.

Linda McKay
Director of Membership and Events
Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau


Hi, I'm Linda McKay, Director of Membership & Events for the GWCVB since 2007. A few of my favorite hobbies are visiting historical sites, reading about early American history and learning about period clothing and historical costume design. I changed careers over 20 years ago to pursue my love for history. I started working part-time in the tourism industry as a tour guide and a visitor service counselor at nearby museums. I enjoy promoting everything that there is to see and do in the Wilmington and Brandywine Valley to visitors, family and friends and I am now sharing my personal experiences with you, the reader. Hope you enjoy reading my blog post!


Downton Abbey ExhibitCarnival logo © 2005 Carnival Film & Television Limited. Masterpiece is a trademark of the WGBH Educational Foundation. All Rights Reserved. Photograph by Nick Briggs © 2012 Carnival Film & Television Limited. All Rights Reserved.
 
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Unwind in the City with a Wilmington, DE Beer Dinner: Just One More Reason Wilmington Rocks

Posted By: Cynthia

Updated - Wednesday, Jul 9, 2014 6:42 AM

Posted - Wednesday, Jul 9, 2014 12:00 AM

Line of BeerWilmington, Delaware is a wonderful place to live and if you're a beer enthusiast, you'll really want to consider a visit. Wilmington is celebrating beer again this summer with many exhilarating chug fests guaranteed to take your mind far from the office and back into the spirit of love, life and delicious brews. The July calendar firmly marks the start of yet another beer inspired season and beer dinners consisting of five or more courses are all the rage. Unwinding in the summer heat with friends and loved ones can only get better with an icy cold draft on-hand and a mouthful of Delaware's finest taproom cuisine.

What's on the Menu

Chelsea's Tavern is scheduled to kick off July with their beer dinner which includes 6 courses and 6 brews for just $66. Hungry Delawareans can dive right into a brew and breakfast, a brew with brunch, an IPA and a BLT, not to mention dinner, dessert and an afternoon snack. Their incredibly crafty beer selections include:

  • JavaHead Stout
  • DreamWeaver Wheat
  • Scratch #145
  • Sunshine Pils
  • Hopback Amber
  • LaGrave


The Chelsea's Tavern Troegg's Beer Dinner
will launch on Saturday, July 12th and reservations are required. Chelsea's Tavern is located at 821 North Market Street, just a hop, skip and jump away from the Residences at Rodney Square and the heart of Downtown Wilmington.

Beer and CalamariIf a beer and a barbeque under the stars is your idea of a good time, Ernest & Scott Taproom is hosting a five course block party style barbeque extravaganza complete with craft beer, bourbon, hot Taproom girls and smoking cigars. The event, entitled Cigars Under the Stars is scheduled to take place on Saturday, July 24th and interested parties are encouraged to reserve a table and an ashtray. The cover charge is $60 plus additional gratuity. Ernest & Scott Taproom can be found at 902 N. Market St., walking distance from Justison Landing, Christina Landing and Rodney Square.

Over at World Cafe Live at the Queen Theatre, they've taken two American favorites and paired them together - grilled cheese and craft beer. These are not your ordinary grilled cheese, World Cafe uses only the best quality locally sourced ingredients for these creations. As for the beer, they shop the globe to bring in amazing local brews as well as hard to find imports from around the world. How does a Yards Saison paired with Old Bay cheddar on brioche, with a mini crab cake sound? Or maybe an Italian Cacio de Lazio on Herbes de Provence bread with tomato & kalamata olive puree along with New Holland Brewing's Golden Cap Saison Ale?

You can enjoy these pairings about once a month, but plan ahead, tickets sell quickly.

It's Always Happy Hour in Wilmington

Wilmington and beer maintain a relationship that dates back to the first settlers of this great nation. That might be why there's always something brewing in the city. From Wilmington Beer Week to the abundance of available crafts and classics, this city is known for knowing how to party. Even the mayor has hosted a citywide toast to the celebration of ale as we know it.



Author Bio: Cynthia Griffith got her start in the freelance world as a songwriter and has been juggling music, fashion and literature for almost a decade. In 2012, Cynthia published her debut novel, The Sun Village Project, which broke into the Amazon Top 100 at number 92 in April 2012. She is also the great, great, granddaughter of James Fennimore Cooper, author of The Last of the Mohicans and many other classic American tales. She hopes to follow in the family footsteps and looks forward to a life of writing and content creation. Read Cynthia's contributions to Live Work Play Wilmington and their Blog.

 
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The Spirit of Shakespeare comes to Rockwood Park in Wilmington, DE This Summer

Posted By: Cynthia

Updated - Thursday, Jul 3, 2014 6:30 AM

Posted - Monday, Jun 30, 2014 12:00 AM

The Spirit of Shakespeare comes to Rockwood Park in Wilmington, DE This Summer

As further proof that the nations' first state is still founded upon arts and tradition, a tribute to renowned playwright and groundbreaking poet William Shakespeare is hereHamlet Logo 2014 to heat up the summer. This July, from the 11th to the 27th, Wilmington, Delaware residents and visitors are invited to attend the Delaware Shakespeare Festival, an event that includes picnicking, live music, arts and crafts and all things Shakespearean. The extravaganza is scheduled to take place in historic Rockwood Park, where participants can surround themselves with an abundance of beauty and antiquity. The DSF is one of many summer activities in Wilmington, Delaware that cleverly combines community ties with classic theatrical efforts in an attempt to deliver something magical and inspiring to the community.

Event Details

Shakespeare Festival 1The riveting story of Hamlet will officially take the stage on Friday, July 11th, which coincidentally is the 450th anniversary of William Shakespeare's life and influence. Friday and Saturday showings are scheduled to take place at 7:30 pm and each Sunday the gates will open slightly earlier at 6 pm. Children 12 and under are granted free admission with the purchase of one adult ticket. Tickets, which go on sale from June 1st on, range from $13 to $35 apiece depending upon your age, status and seating requirements. Students, seniors and military families can enjoy a sizeable discount and reserved seating is available for a slightly higher price tag.

All attendees are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs. The option to bring your own food and drink is available; however there will be a light refreshment stand onsite. This rendition of Hamlet is a family friendly spectacular is sure to be a hit with Shakespeare veterans and newbies alike. First timers with a taste for the classics and a passion for outdoor performances are sure to enjoy both the show and the events leading up to opening night.

Prior to Opening Night

While Hamlet and Shakespeare are the main event, the DSF has many extra activities in store for festival goers. Pre-show activities include arts and crafts, comedic routines and a delightful Shakespeare orientation.

The Delaware Shakespeare Festival Location

Nestled right in the heart of Rockwood Park, amidst the mansions, gardens and a myriad of Delaware attractions, sits the entrance to the Delaware Shakespeare Festival which is located at 4651 Washington Street Extension Wilmington, DE 19809 just footsteps from Shipley Road. If you're using 95, exit 9 will put you in direct route with Rockwood Park. Drivers need only follow the signs that lead to Rockwood and seek out the main parking lot just off the Washington Street Extension.

Much like the life of the legend himself, this Shakespearean festival is rooted in creativity and designed to inspire the imaginations of a wide variety of age groups. There's more family oriented fun in store for the residents of Wilmington, Delaware.


About the Author: Cynthia Griffith has been juggling music, fashion and literature for almost a decade. In 2012, Cynthia went on to publish her debut novel, The Sun Village Project, which broke into the Amazon Top 100 at number 92. Today, Cynthia is an avid blogger for the
LuxiaSuites and Live, Work, Play communities of Wilmington, Delaware. She enjoys blogging about events, shops and restaurants in her community and proudly supports all local non-profit organizations. Cynthia Griffith is also the great, great, granddaughter of James Fennimore Cooper, author of The Last of the Mohicans and many other classic American tales.


 
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In the Park with the Delaware Shakespeare Festival

Posted By: Scott

Updated - Monday, Jun 16, 2014 11:42 AM

Posted - Monday, Jun 16, 2014 12:00 AM

Hamelt - DelShakes - 2014One of Greater Wilmington's best kept secrets is classical theatre as William Shakespeare intended it to be. Every summer, at Rockwood Park & Museum, the Delaware Shakespeare Festival puts on a rendition of one of Shakespeare's finest works!

The intimacy between actors and the audience is captivated by the magical setting of watching theatre under the stars on the grounds of the historic mansion. Every year my friends and I pack up our picnic baskets, with all sorts of treats, and grab a few blankets or chairs for seating on the lawn of the beautiful Rockwood Mansion.  As actors appear through the woods, or from behind the audience, you're constantly in awe with the seamless integration and use of the natural grounds as the set.

The caliber and artistic quality of the performers is worth noting as well. They do a tremendous job in really capturing the essence of Shakespeare's brilliance in a natural setting outside of a theatre. So as you sit there this spring planning your weekend getaways, remember, this July Hamlet comes to the Delaware Shakespeare Festival!

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DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival

Posted By: Sarah

Updated - Monday, Jun 9, 2014 12:22 PM

Posted - Monday, Jun 9, 2014 12:00 AM

Jazz FEst 150x118Attending the DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival is one of my favorite festivals, and as you will see - I do go to a lot of festivals.  They may all be classified as one of my favorites, because we have some amazing festivals in the Greater Wilmington area.

How many free festivals do you hear of?  Well, the DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival is the largest, FREE, outdoor jazz festival on the East Coast.  This multi-day jazz festival brings all music lovers into the City of Wilmington to Rodney Square.  You will definitely be toe-tapping if not dancing before the night is over.

clifford brown jazz festMy husband (Gary) and I are regulars for each night.  The performers are amazing.  Last year marked the 25th anniversary for the festival - Benny Golson Quartet to Jessy J - the stage was rockin!  We even met up with several of our neighbors that came in for the fun too.

Performers rock the stage and really enjoy playing in Wilmington.  Wilmington's own Clifford Brown was a trumpeter, whose life tragically ended early one summer morning in 1956 in a car accident.  The DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival is a tribute to Clifford Brown - a great man and a way to keep his memory alive.

Dates for 2014 are set - June 18 - 21.  Did I mention that this is the largest - FREE outdoor jazz festival on the East Coast?  Mark your calendar now and start making plans to have some fun.  See you there!

Sarah Willoughby
Executive Director
Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau

About Sarah: With over 20 years in the industry, I am very passionate about tourism, especially here in Delaware. Through my blogs you will meet my husband, Gary, and our dog, Farley. And, I hope, you'll get a true sense of the love we have for Greater Wilmington, Delaware and the surrounding Brandywine Valley area. We love the many festivals and events in the Greater Wilmington and want to share that love with you, the reader, the tourist, the local. Hope you enjoy.

 


 
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St. Anthony's Italian Festival

Posted By: Sarah

Updated - Wednesday, Jun 4, 2014 10:38 AM

Posted - Wednesday, Jun 4, 2014 12:00 AM

italian festivalAnother one of my favorite festivals!  After all of these food festivals - I will need to get back on my diet!

June 8 - 15, 2014, the premier week-long St. Anthony's Italian Festival celebrating the many facets of Italian culture, music and food. Each year the Festival highlights a region of Italy and the cuisine and culture of that locale. This celebration is one of the largest of its kind on the East Coast.

This year, the festival will focus on the Ascoli Piceno region in the Le Marche province.  Many Italian-American families in the Wilmington area hail from this region.

Experience some authentic Italian food specialties in one of the many outdoor eateries.  And there is music and fun for all ages.  Check out the huge midway and "Kiddie Land" with the best rides and games for the entire family.  I will admit - I have not been on the rides.

Come and check it out - you will love.

Sarah Willoughby
Executive Director
Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau

About Sarah: With over 20 years in the industry, I am very passionate about tourism, especially here in Delaware. Through my blogs you will meet my husband, Gary, and our dog, Farley. And, I hope, you'll get a true sense of the love we have for Greater Wilmington, Delaware and the surrounding Brandywine Valley area. We love the many festivals and events in the Greater Wilmington and want to share that love with you, the reader, the tourist, the local. Hope you enjoy.

 


 
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Wilmington Greek Festival: An Annual Tradition

Posted By: Scott

Updated - Thursday, May 29, 2014 11:18 AM

Posted - Thursday, May 29, 2014 12:00 AM

The Holy Trinity Greek Festival holds a special place in my heart, a place that I get to go back to year-after-year and reminisce about one of the happiest times of my life - my honeymoon.

Greek FestivalThe story starts nearly 12 years ago when my then fiancé and I were enjoying a smorgasbord of tasty Greek delights that included Dolmades, Keftedes, Orzo, Spanakopita and so much more at the Holy Trinity Greek Festival on Broom Street in Wilmington. As we sat there so contently stuffing our faces and enjoying the traditional Greek music and dancers we each glanced around the room admiring the beautiful imagery of the Greek Islands, Athens and all its history and culture, when - BAM! - it hit us like a ton of bricks. "Let's go to Greece for our honeymoon."

Needless to say, that trip to Greece was amazing and is something we talk about to this day, but never more than each June when the tents go up, the Greek flags are flying, the Gyro's are hot, the Greek beer is cold and Wilmington's Holy Trinity Greek Festival is open for business. And you'll still find my wife and I stuffing our faces with tasty Greek delights - especially the Loukoumades (Honey Balls topped with cinnamon). Do not leave the Wilmington Greek Festival without trying the Loukoumades!


Scott Ciancio
Director of Marketing
Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau


About Scott: As a lifelong Delawarean I love my State and am very proud to call it home. While I love to travel, I try not to forget how many amazing things there are to see and do right here in my own back yard. Stay tuned to my blog postings and you'll learn everything from my passion for a good movie to how much I enjoy local theatre, Wilmington festivals, art and so much more.

 
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Meals from the Masters Weekend

Posted By: Sarah

Updated - Thursday, Apr 17, 2014 6:02 AM

Posted - Thursday, Apr 17, 2014 12:00 AM

Meals from the MastersMeals from the Masters is an event supporting Meals on Wheels Delaware - a nonprofit organization working with five meal-providing agencies -and really showcases the culinary talents from across the United States..  Last year, it is reported that they delivered nearly 635,000 meals throughout the state of Delaware.

2014 marks the 17th anniversary of the Meals from the Masters event.  So get ready to join us on April 25 and 27th.  Over the years, I have attended the Celebrity Chefs' Brunch on numerous opportunities.  Always a fun and tasty event and I will be going again this year.  The lineup of the chefs is very impressive.  My husband Gary and I are looking forward to it.

Meals from the Masters 2012New for me this year will be the Evening with the Masters and the Cellar Masters' Wine Auction.  I have heard many good things on both events.  The Evening with the Masters will bring 45+ top local and regional restaurants for some wonderful tastings.  I'm looking forward to the Wine Auction especially, just have to be careful not to make any big hand gestures or it could get expensive!

Sarah Willoughby
Executive Director
Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau

About Sarah
: With over 20 years in the industry, I am very passionate about tourism, especially here in Delaware. Through my blogs you will meet my husband, Gary, and our dog, Farley. And, I hope, you'll get a true sense of the love we have for Greater Wilmington, Delaware and the surrounding Brandywine Valley area. We love the many festivals and events in the Greater Wilmington and want to share that love with you, the reader, the tourist, the local. Hope you enjoy.


 
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