Category Archives: Ridgely

Finite and Alive, drawings by Rebecca Clark, on view at Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
(RIDGELY, MD—August 3, 2015)

Reception to meet the artist is Saturday, August 15, 2015

Finite and Alive, Rebecca Clark’s show of new drawings, is filled with wonder and curiosity about the natural world coupled with a poignant sense of loss. On view through Oct. 2 at the Adkins Arboretum Visitor’s Center, this Hyattsville artist’s exquisite drawings of birds and animals are remarkable for both their skill and their sensitivity. There will be a reception on Sat., Aug. 15 from 3 to 5 p.m. to meet the artist.

Wings angled and strong against the air rushing past them, beak razor sharp, eye clear and bright, Clark’s “Kestrel 1” is the very image of the speed and unrelenting focus of a bird of prey. It’s rare these days to find an artist who has the technical ability and patience to draw so beautifully. Clark’s attention to detail is scrupulous. Every muscle of the kestrel’s compact body is engaged and every intricately patterned feather precisely angled for swiftness and accuracy.

“I’ve been an artist my whole life and studied art and art history,” Clark said. “But it wasn’t until I took a botanical illustration course at the Corcoran College of Art with Leslie Exton that I really learned how to draw. She taught us very particular techniques, and it opened up a whole new world for me.”

Clark draws primarily in graphite, making full use of the nuances of her pencils, but occasionally, she introduces touches of color to focus on a detail or enrich her subject. In “Worlds without End,” she uses varied hues of red to highlight the subtle relationships and contrasts between the colors of rose hips and the feathers of a pair of cardinals. Borrowing its title from Allen Ginsberg’s desolate lament on the nature of contemporary life, “Howl” is a riveting drawing of a howling coyote with a tiny patch of angry red deep in the shadows of its open mouth.

Luscious and tactile, Clark’s drawings of oyster shells were created especially for this show at Adkins Arboretum and acknowledge its proximity to the Chesapeake Bay. Fascinated by their varied shapes and sizes, she drew the oyster shells’ graceful contours and sketched in their subtle colors with colored pencil, watercolor, pastel and oil pastel.

“The oysters are just so symbolic of my childhood in Annapolis and on the Chesapeake Bay. I collected and drew them way back,” she explained. “I also wanted to draw attention to them because of their dwindling population and their crucial value to the health of the Bay. Plus, I’m so mesmerized by their subtle beauty—the concentric rings and build-up of growth, the irregularities, the vibrant colors and iridescence and the stains from algae and bay residue. They’ve been incredibly fun to make.”

Clark’s oysters, as well as her animals and birds, are drawn absent of any background. Their isolation on the stark white of the paper emphasizes the rich textures and forms of their shells, fur or feathers and the pure sense of aliveness of each one. But curiously, it also creates an eerie feeling of separateness.

No living being can exist without its natural environment. Surrounding these creatures with empty space, Clark creates an underlying tension. The creatures she depicts are imperiled, cut off from the environments that created and sustained them. In doing this, she intimates not only the effects of pollution, habitat loss and climate change on individual species but, even more significantly, the loss of human consciousness of our intimate connections with the delicate balance of life on earth.

This show is part of Adkins Arboretum’s ongoing exhibition series of work on natural themes by regional artists. It is on view through Oct. 2 at the Arboretum Visitor’s Center located at 12610 Eveland Road near Tuckahoe State Park in Ridgely. Contact the Arboretum at 410-634-2847, ext. 0 or for gallery hours.


Adkins Arboretum is a 400-acre native garden and preserve at the headwaters of the Tuckahoe Creek in Caroline County. Open year round, the Arboretum offers educational programs for all ages about nature and gardening. For additional information about Arboretum programs, visit or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

The Scientific Method for Homeschoolers Begins September 15, 2015 at Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
RIDGELY, MD—July 30, 2015

Uncover the fascinating origins of modern science with a glimpse into the past when Adkins Arboretum offers The Scientific Method for Homeschoolers, an eight-week program beginning September 15, 2015.

In this series, homeschool students ages 7 to 14 will journey from the birth of science in ancient Mesopotamia to science in the 21st century, with stops along the way in ancient Greece, the Middle Ages, the Scientific Revolution and The Age of Reason. Delving into the components of the scientific method, students will learn key scientific vocabulary and conduct experiments. They will use their newfound knowledge in the field, working in teams to create and test hypotheses related to the Arboretum’s forest, wetland, meadow and stream habitats. The program will culminate in a science fair showcasing team projects. Reading activities will be part of each class. Classes will meet on Tuesdays from 1 to 2:30 p.m., September 15 to November 3, 2015.

The series is $55 for members and $70 for non-members. Advance registration is required at or by calling 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

Adkins Arboretum Offers Fall Nature Fun for Preschoolers

Adkins Arboretum
(RIDGELY, MD—July 28, 2015)

Goats, butterflies, pumpkins and more! Celebrate fall and engage your young child with nature with Adkins Arboretum’s Nature Preschool programs. Taught by Youth Program Coordinator Jenny Houghton, this series of eight classes for three- to five-year-olds is offered Tuesday mornings beginning September 15, 2015.

Advance registration is required for these popular programs. The fee per class is $4 for members and $6 for members, with a 10 percent discount offered for enrollment in all eight classes. Programs run from 10 to 11:15 a.m. and include a craft and a snack. Space is limited, so early registration is recommended. For more information or to register, visit or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

Programs include:

Meet Lily!
Sept. 15
Visit the Arboretum’s goat herd, led by the lovely Lily, and learn how goats are used to munch troublesome weeds. Children will make goat puppets, sample goat milk and have their pictures taken with Lily and her four-legged friends.

Ants in Your Pants
Sept. 22
Join in a wiggly “Ants in Your Pants” dance and make a fingerprint ant craft. After learning some interesting ant trivia, we’ll go on a bug hunt, try out a bug vacuum and munch “Ants on a Log” snacks.

Milkweed and Monarchs
Sept. 29
Make a wish on a fluffy milkweed seed and learn about the beautiful monarch butterflies that lay their eggs on the milkweed plant. We’ll look for milkweed pods in the meadow, make a butterfly craft and enjoy butterfly books with our snack.

Teddy Bear
Oct. 6
Children and their teddy bear friends are invited to a forest picnic! The morning will include a bear hunt along woodland paths (bears rarely wander to the Eastern Shore, but it’s still fun to look), bear songs and a teddy bear bandana craft.

Pumpkin Party
Oct. 13
It’s pumpkin season! We’ll get the scoop on pumpkins, visit the Arboretum’s Funshine Garden and make pumpkin shakers. Then we’ll wiggle and twist to the Pumpkin Polka!

Nuts for Squirrels
Oct. 20
Are you nuts for squirrels? We’ll explore the world of these furry cuties on a forest scavenger hunt and return to the classroom for acorn stories and nutty snacks. A squirrel napkin ring craft will round out this fun-filled morning.

Going Batty
Oct. 27
Bats: terrifying vampires or cuddly Stellalunas? We’ll learn the science behind the world’s only flying mammal, experiment with echolocation and try navigating the meadow bat-style. We’ll also make batty Halloween decorations and celebrate with a holiday-themed snack and story.

Scouts and Maidens
Nov. 3
Who were the first people to live on the Eastern Shore? Let’s visit the First Light Village wigwams to find out! We’ll play a Native American corn game, collect sticks for a pretend campfire and craft a Native American centerpiece for the Thanksgiving table.


Adkins Arboretum is a 400-acre native garden and preserve at the headwaters of the Tuckahoe Creek in Caroline County. Open year round, the Arboretum offers educational programs for all ages about nature and gardening. For additional information about Arboretum programs, visit or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

View Potomac: The River Runs Through Us June 14 at Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
RIDGELY, MD—June 9, 2015

Each of us is connected to rivers in our everyday lives. Most of the six million people living in the Potomac River watershed do not realize that their drinking water comes from the “Nation’s River.” While the river’s health has improved since passage of the Clean Water Act in 1972, the Potomac is still in trouble. On Sunday, June 14, learn about the need to protect this essential resource with a showing of Potomac: The River Runs Through Us at Adkins Arboretum.

Co-directed, produced and written by Peggy Fleming and Sean Furmage, the film follows the flow of the Potomac from its origins in Virginia and West Virginia, into homes and businesses, and back to the river. There will be a discussion with Fleming following the screening, as well as the opportunity to view Water: Moving, her exhibit of abstract photographs that explores the infinitely varied dance of light and shadow as water interacts with its surroundings.

The film begins at 1 p.m. It is free for members and free with the Arboretum’s $5 admission for non-members. Register online at, or call 410.634.2847, ext. 0.

Special Guests Visit 2015 Chrome City Ride at Benedictine

Benedictine School
RIDGELY, MD – MAY 15, 2015

This year’s 14th Annual Chrome City Ride at the Benedictine School in Ridgely, MD, on Sunday, July 26, 2015, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. will feature two special guests – actors from the classic movie “American Graffiti.” Actors Bo Hopkins, who played Pharoah Joe, and Candy Clark, who played Debbie and who was nominated for Best Supporting Actress that year, will be on hand to greet guests and sign autographs, adding to the event’s walk back in time. Hundreds of gleaming motorcycles, awesome street rods, and classic and custom cars from all over Maryland and Delaware will gather at designated registration locations in Seaford, DE, Grasonville, Easton, Laurel, Salisbury, and Annapolis, then cruise in convoys with police escorts to the Benedictine School campus.

Photo:  Benedictine can always find room to park more motorcycles at Chrome City Ride.

Benedictine can always find room to park more motorcycles at Chrome City Ride. – Contributed Photo

Benedictine can always find room to park more motorcycles at Chrome City Ride. – Contributed Photo[/caption]The event draws nearly 1000 people and raises about $100,000 each year for tuition assistance for children, and supports opportunities for adults with disabilities to work and live in the community. According to Event Chairman Spud Blake, the event is organized and produced by volunteers primarily from state and local law enforcement. He comments, “We are so appreciative of the committee members who put this event on year after year. This is a family event – we want everyone to come experience the roar of the vehicles as they come down the Mile Drive to the Benedictine School. Seeing the residents’ reactions is something you won’t forget. Plus, this ‘feel good’ event is about introducing people to what Benedictine does and about having a good time!”

This year’s event will also include the return of favorites “Rockin’ Elvis” and Big Daddy P and DJ Chris, as well as motorcycle demonstrators who entertain the crowds. Law enforcement agencies participating include officers from Seaford, DE; Salisbury; MD and DE State Police; and other local law enforcement agencies. The $25-per-rider registration fee provides each rider with an official Ride T-shirt, a delicious catered lunch, and entertainment (including a chance for prizes and trophies), and a day of fun showing off their chrome to an appreciative crowd. Spectators are also welcome, and their $25 registration fee also provides them with an official Ride T-shirt, lunch and a day of fun. Everyone goes home with something! The riders are expected to arrive on campus around 11:30 a.m.

Sponsors of the event to date include BMW of Fairfax, VA; Callahan’s Gas & Appliances, Centreville, MD; MOC Products Company, Inc., Pacoima, CA; Old Glory Harley Davidson, Laurel, MD; and WBOC-TV16, Salisbury, MD, who is the event’s media sponsor.

For online registration and further information on the 2015 Chrome City Ride, visit You may also call the Benedictine Foundation at 410-634-2292 for information on times, rally point locations, registration, and more. The sister event to the Chrome City ride is the “Cops Ride” in June of each year in Upper Marlboro.

Providing opportunity to live meaningful, productive lives in communities of choice, Benedictine helps children and adults with developmental disabilities reach their greatest potential without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, or age. Like Benedictine School on Facebook.

For more information about Benedictine, please call 410-634-2292 or visit us online at

Photography Walk and Soup Program Offered June 6, 2015 at Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
(RIDGELY, MD—May 18, 2015)

Capture stunning images of spring and enjoy a tasty and healthy lunch when Adkins Arboretum offers a Photography Walk and Soup program on Saturday, June 6, 2015. Bring your camera and join photographer Josh Taylor for a morning walk along the Arboretum’s woodland and meadow paths. During the walk, Taylor will assist participants and give pointers on capturing landscapes and close-up images.

Following the walk, participants will be treated to the Arboretum’s signature Soup ‘n Walk fare of zucchini apple soup, green bean salad with mango dressing, apple date wheat bread with cherry jam, and berry cobbler. During lunch, Taylor will give a brief talk and share his photographs from a variety of nearby gardens.

Taylor has presented photography workshops at the Smithsonian National Orchid Show, the U.S. National Arboretum, the U.S. Botanic Garden, and for public gardens, preserves and horticultural societies across the region. In addition to teaching in the Smithsonian Studio Arts Program and at the Corcoran School of Art and Design, he exhibits his work regularly and speaks to camera and garden clubs.

Photography Walk and Soup runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The program is $55 for members and $60 for non-members. Advance registration is required by May 28, 2015 at or by calling 410-634-2847, ext. 0.


Mana Saxophone Quartet to Perform Forest Music June 12, 2015 at Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
(RIDGELY, MD — May 12, 2015)

Adkins Arboretum joins with the National Music Festival in presenting a unique improvisatory performance in the Arboretum forest on Fri., June 12 when Mana Saxophone Quartet performs Forest Music. Positioning themselves in various places in the forest, within hearing distance though not necessarily within sight of each other, these innovative musicians will respond to each other’s playing in a musical conversation that winds through the trees. Following the forest performance, they will give a brief concert in the Visitor’s Center. The program begins at 4 p.m.

Mana Quartet - Promotional Photo

Mana Saxophone Quartet – Promotional Photo

Championed by Chamber Music Magazine as “Saxophone Ambassadors,” the Mana Quartet has presented fresh interpretations of twenty-first-century repertoire and many virtually unheard-of twentieth-century masterworks since its inception in 2007. Using vintage instruments built to the specifications of the saxophone’s inventor, Adolphe Sax, Mana’s passionate presentations offer audiences a chance to view the saxophone in a new light—a striking aesthetic characterized by intrinsic warmth, dynamic range of character and absolute versatility. Mana redefines the saxophone quartet and the saxophone’s place in classical music.

In 2009, Mana Quartet became the first saxophone quartet in history to receive the coveted Grand Prize at the Coleman International Chamber Ensemble Competition, quickly elevating them to the professional chamber music arena. Since then, the group has taken on a growing list of residencies at major music festivals and universities, as well as countless community outreach concerts and events throughout the United States and Europe. Mana is repeatedly featured on NPR’s Performance Today, with orchestras across North America in featured concerto appearances, and maintains a high profile on the chamber circuit.

Mana is currently the Resident Chamber Ensemble at the National Music Festival, held May 31 to June 13 in Chestertown.

This program is free. Gallery seating for the Visitor’s Center concert is limited; early registration is highly recommended. Register for Forest Music at, or call 410.634.2847, ext. 0.


Adkins Arboretum’s Summer Nature Camps Begin June 15, 2015

Adkins Arboretum
RIDGELY, MD—April 2015

Summer belongs to children. For the past ten years, families and children have grown with Adkins Arboretum’s Summer Nature Camps. The camps provide extraordinary ways for children to enjoy summer the old-fashioned way—outdoors.

Campers will make lifelong memories while exploring the Arboretum’s woodland, meadows, streams and wetland. From grazing on blackberries to splashing in the Blockston Branch, the Arboretum’s Summer Nature Camps provide children with a truly enchanted experience.

Camp Bumblebee, for preschoolers ages 2 and 3, runs June 15–19. Campers will search for caterpillars in the Funshine Garden, gather juicy blackberries along the meadow’s edge, and visit the Arboretum’s goat herd. From splashing in the stream to hunting for tadpoles in the wetland, Camp Bumblebee is summer at its best! Adults attend this camp with their children and enjoy the experience of discovering nature together.

Camp Pollywog (June 22–26) campers ages 4 to 6 will enjoy a golden week in the great outdoors, floating leaf and twig boats down the Blockston Branch, creating leafy magic carpets on the forest floor, and mixing up gooey wetland “parfaits.” Stories, crafts and healthy snacks are combined with games and guided nature exploration.

In Camp Paw Paw (June 29–July 3), campers ages 7 to 9 will enjoy a week of “Arrowhead Adventure” as they walked in the moccasin-clad footsteps of early Native Americans. Campers will craft tools from ironwood, hunt for arrowheads along the streambed, harvest squash from the Three Sisters garden, explore the Arboretum’s wigwams, and much more. Healthy snacks, guided exploration, Native American crafts, and team-building will round out the week.

Ever wonder what it takes to survive in the wildness? In Camp Egret (July 6– 10), campers ages 10 to 12 will learn the basics, from navigating the position of the sun to purifying water over a campfire they build themselves. Along the way, campers will set snares, construct a waterproof shelter, and forage for native plants, all while building valuable teamwork and leadership skills.

Registration fees vary, and advance registration is required. Register at or by calling 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

Shore Shakespeare Brings The Comedy of Errors to Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
RIDGELY, MD—April 14, 2015)

Celebrate spring with one of William Shakespeare’s most popular comedies in one of the Eastern Shore’s most bucolic settings. Bring a friend! Bring a picnic! Prepare to be dazzled when Shore Shakespeare presents The Comedy of Errors May 1, 2 and 3, 2015 at Adkins Arboretum.

Long one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays, and his first big hit, The Comedy of Errors weaves the tale of two sets of twins and their adventures when one set arrives in Ephesus, unknown to and unaware of the other. Confusion reigns and hilarity ensues as the twins come face-to-face. Shakespeare combines adventure, sparkling wit and glorious language to present a clever and popular comedy of human blindness, folly, romance and suspense. Broadway fans will recognize the story as the basis for the smash Rogers & Hart musical The Boys from Syracuse.

The production is directed by Greg Minahan, a longtime Broadway performer and a writer and director of numerous musical plays for children. Minahan portrayed Mercutio in Shore Shakespeare’s 2014 production of Romeo and Juliet.

Performances are Fri. and Sat., May 1 and 2 at 6 p.m. and Sun., May 3 at 3 p.m. in the Arboretum’s stunning South Meadow. Tickets are $10 for members and $15 for non-members and may be reserved at or by calling 410-634-2847, ext 0. Information about the production is also available at

Shore Shakespeare is a pan-community theatre group established to present the classic works of the theatrical repertoire and to encourage its audiences to support local community theatre all over the Shore.

Flyer: Shore Shakespeare at Adkins Arbortum - May 1-3, 2015

Quoting Nature, Works by Erin Murphy, on View at Adkins Arboretum

Adkins Arboretum
March 31, 2015

Quoting Nature, Works by Erin Murphy, on View at Adkins Arboretum
Public reception is Saturday April 4, 2015

Erin Murphy finds worlds within a patch of sunlight or shadow. On view through May 29 at the Adkins Arboretum Visitor’s Center, Quoting Nature, her show of paintings, drawings and monoprints, draws the viewer into deep, atmospheric space. There will be a reception on Sat., April 4, 2015 from 3 to 5 p.m. to meet the artist.

Murphy’s works are full of sensuous, subtle colors and rich textures. Inspired by landscapes from Baltimore to South Africa, her poetic abstractions often hint at vast swaths of sky and earth but might just as easily be intimate close-ups. Mysteriously shining through velvety shades of darkest blue, the luminous radiance of “The Field,” a large monoprint, suggests a twilight sky above a meadow and distant tree line, but it could be many other things.

A young artist who graduated from Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in 2011 with a BFA in painting, Murphy is an avid hiker and traveler with a fascination for varied landscapes. She studied at MICA’s Summer Study in Sorrento, Italy, and at Central Saint Martin’s College, University of the Arts London and has had artist residencies at Salem Art Works in Salem, N.Y., and the Bijou Studio in Cape Town, South Africa.

While studying at MICA, Murphy made copies of Old Masters paintings, a practice she sometimes still uses when she’s looking for inspiration. In working on these close studies of major works of art by artists such as Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, J. M. W. Turner and John Singer Sargent, she would often find herself fascinated by a small area of a painting and use it as a jumping off point for creating her own painting. This is the same process she uses when working from nature.

“I take in bits of sky or patches of light streaming through the trees or filtering onto a crumbling rock face into darkness,” she explained. “I try to isolate that moment, which is abstract but very alive. I’m an extreme editor of nature.”

Murphy’s works imply thresholds into subtle worlds of changing shadow and light. These are images of possibility and revelation. A brushy streak of bright yellow flashes across the lush brown surface of “Glimmer,” a small oil painting created while Murphy lived in Baltimore. It is as if in a moment, a sunbeam, an open door or a huge mountain will come into focus.

Occasionally, Murphy’s titles refer to specific places. In “Mist on Table Mountain,” a raw pigment drawing made during her residency in Cape Town, a curl of blue-white edges over the top of a dark triangle in a reference to the mist that can often be seen flowing over the dramatic horizontal peak of the mountain that soars up behind the city.

“There wouldn’t be any cloud cover,” Murphy said, “and it would literally be the mist pouring over the mountain. They say that’s how you can tell a storm is coming.”

Currently living in Nashville, Tenn., Murphy uses her artistic skills in her day job creating window displays for Anthropologie while pursuing her studio work at Fort Houston, a communal creative work space for artists and craftsmen that features a print shop, wood shop, photography studio and other facilities. Adding to her skills in painting and printmaking, she is learning woodworking techniques there and constructed her own frames for the works in the show.

“I feel like it hones my observation skills to take on a new project in a new space,” she said, “And I’m excited to think about what my work will look like in a year!”

This show is part of Adkins Arboretum’s ongoing exhibition series of work on natural themes by regional artists. It is on view through May 29 at the Arboretum Visitor’s Center located at 12610 Eveland Road near Tuckahoe State Park in Ridgely. Contact the Arboretum at 410-634-2847, ext. 0 for gallery hours.