Eighth annual Museum Ramble schedule announced

Eighth annual Museum Ramble schedule announced
20 museums participating

(Hagerstown, MD): Washington County's Eighth Annual Museum Ramble is scheduled for the weekend of April 30 and May 1, 2011. The Ramble, sponsored by the Washington County Association of Museums and Historical Sites (WCAMHS) and the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB), includes twenty local museums and historic sites. Most of the participating museums are opening their doors free of charge and many have special offerings planned for the weekend. For some of the museums, this event marks their opening weekend for the season.
The Museum Ramble brochure, put together by WCAMHS and the CVB, with the design expertise of Icon Graphics, includes a list of participating sites, the hours for each site, and a map that shows where each site is located for the self-guided tour. The printed guide is available at the Visitor Welcome Center in downtown Hagerstown and at the various museum sites. It can also be viewed online at http://museumramble.marylandmemories.org.
Museum Ramble Passports are also available at the Welcome Center and participating sites. Each site has a stamp for the passport and once visitors are finished "rambling," they can fill out their contact information and drop off the passport at any museum for a chance to win a free basketful of goodies!
"No matter what your interests are -- fine arts, rural heritage,american history, black history, geology, or trains - you're sure to enjoy a ramble through this year's selection of Washington County museums," says Museum Association President Bill Knode. "We welcome visitors and residents to take a trip through our county and see some of our wonderful museums. Start the day with refreshments at the downtown Hagerstown Visitor Center and look for surprises at all the museums along the way!"
"Our county has an extremely rich history to tell, and visitors and residents alike love the Museum Ramble," says Convention and Visitors Bureau President Tom Riford. "We're happy to be celebrating the Ramble's eighth year!" The CVB pays for the design and printing of the Museum Ramble brochure, the banners around the county, the web site, and promotion for the annual event. Also, the CVB helps financially sponsor many of the participating museums for the Ramble weekend. "This is an important annual event for Washington County," said Riford.
Of Maryland's 300-plus museums, more than 10 percent are located in Washington County. The Museum Ramble makes the most of this by welcoming residents and visitors to the county's museums, many of which are private and typically open by appointment only. New additions to this year's Museum Ramble lineup are the Boonsboro Trolley Station Museum, the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area Exhibit and Visitor Center at the Newcomer House at Antietam, and the Sharpsburg Historical Society. The original Boonsboro Trolley Station building has been restored and is the last remaining trolley station is Washington County. Located on North Main Street, it was operational from 1902 to 1938. The museum was dedicated in 2009 and houses trolley artifacts and photos.
The Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area Exhibit and Visitor Center is located in the historic Newcomer House along Route 34 near Antietam Creek on Antietam National Battlefield. The center opened last fall because of a cooperative agreement between the battlefield and the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau. It features interpretive exhibits that focus on three main heritage area themes: In the Heat of Battle, On the Home Front, and Beyond the Battlefield. The back room of the center serves as a visitor information area with visitor guides and brochures from the three counties in the heritage area - Carroll, Frederick, and Washington counties.
The Sharpsburg Historical Society recently moved to 106 East Main Street at the Town Hall, above the Sharpsburg Library. The Historical Society's collection includes documents and family histories from the oldest town in Washington County. It also has artifacts on display.
The museums and sites participating in the Museum Ramble, and planning special activities, are:
Boonsborough Museum of History (301-432-6969), 113 N. Main Street, Boonsboro - Come see a special display in what many call Washington County's most eclectic collection! Known as one of the best small museums in the US, with a historical collection that is second to none! Featuring a new exhibit room. Open Saturday, 10am-4pm, Sunday 1-5pm.
Boonsboro Trolley Station Museum (301-432-8039), Corner of N. Main St. and Shafer Park Dr. - This is the last remaining trolley station in Washington County, built in 1902 and used until 1938 when the trolleys stopped running. Open Sunday only, 1-5pm.
Bowman House and Boonsboro Historical Society (301-432-8410), 323 N. Main Street, Boonsboro - The Bowman House built by Jacob Powles is typical of log houses built in Western Maryland during the first half of the nineteenth century. In 1868, John Bowman purchased the log house and established the "Boonsboro Pottery". His kiln was located to the rear of the building. Open Hearth Cooking (late-growing winter vegetables and fruits), Herb Garden, Candle Making, Pottery Demonstrations and House Tours. Open Sunday only, 1-5pm
C&O Canal-Cushwa Basin (301-582-0818) Williamsport - Park Rangers will lead tours of Cushwa Basin. There will be lock demonstrations and tours of Lock House 44. Watch the historic 1917 film of the working canal at the Visitor Center. Saturday & Sunday, noon-4pm.
Discovery Station and Hagerstown Aviation Exhibit (301-790-0076), 101 West Washington St., Hagerstown - This hands-on learning museum includes exhibits that promote science, technology, and history through displays and programs that are both educational and entertaining. See a triceratops skull, operate the controls of a Cessna 150, view a model of a NASA spacecraft, tour the C&O Canal exhibit, marvel at a replica of the Titanic, find out how a weather station works, and see the new Japanese Culture Exhibit. Open Saturday, 10am-4pm and Sunday, 2-5pm.
Fort Frederick State Park (301-842-2155), 18 miles west of Hagerstown, one mile south of I-70 (Rt 56 exit 12) - Enjoy the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum and the Fort Frederick Museum while attending the 17th annual 18th Century Market Fair. The Market Fair features craftspeople and an 18th century encampment. Please plan to be here at least 4 hours. Fee: $5.00 for adults $2.00 for children. Hours are Saturday, 9am-5pm and Sunday, 9am-3pm.
Hagerstown Railroad Museum at City Park Grand Opening weekend to unveil the newly repainted Western Maryland cabooses! Thomas Trackless Train rides for kids of all ages will be provided. Open Saturday, 10am-4pm and Sunday, 2-5pm. Free admission.
Hagerstown Roundhouse Museum (301-739-4665), 300 S. Burhans Blvd (US 11), Hagerstown - Drinks and cookies provided. There are extraordinary things to see, including a trolley built in 1918, torpedoes for railroad tracks, and a special lantern designed to measure color blindness. Guided tours of #132 Locomotive and cabooses! See the largest display of working model trains in the four-state area!
Hagerstown's Historic City Farmers' Market (301-739-8577 ext. 190), 25 W. Church Street, Hagerstown, Visit the oldest continuously operating farmersR17; market in Maryland! The Farmers' Market offers breakfast and early lunch from 5am-noon in addition to local produce, meat and dairy products, and baked goods. Special activities will take place in the Market Alley from 9am-noon. Market doors open 5am-noon Saturday only.
Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area Exhibit & Visitor Center (301-432-6402), Newcomer House, Antietam National Battlefield, East of Sharpsburg on Route 34 - Interpretive exhibits focus on heritage area themes: On the Home Front, In the Heat of Battle, and Beyond the Battlefield, and panels feature sites where these themes may be explored. Brochures, Civil War Trails map guides, county visitor guides and other materials are available. Staff can help visitors tailor their plans for exploring Civil War sites in Carroll, Frederick, and Washington counties. Open Saturday and Sunday, 11am-5pm.
Jonathan Hager House and Museum (301-739-8393), City Park, Hagerstown - Private frontier fort and original home of Hagerstown's founder. This special weekend will feature a no admission open house along with a fun scavenger hunt for the family to complete as they walk through the Hager House and Museum. Also on site will be French and Indian War era reenactors in period dress, and special colonial presentations on the grounds and throughout the Hager House during the event. Open Saturday, 10am-4pm and Sunday, 1-5pm.
The Mansion House Art Center (301-797-6813) City Park, Hagerstown - The Georgian-style Mansion House was built in 1843 of native limestone and brick. The bricks were made from the mud of the lake area, now a focal point of Hagerstown's City Park, which the house overlooks. The center is the headquarters for the Valley Art Association. Visitors may view and purchase works of over twenty local artists. In addition to serving as a gallery, the Mansion House offers art classes. Open Saturday, 11am-4pm and Sunday, 1-5pm.
Miller House and Washington County Historical Society (301-797-8782), 135 W. Washington Street, Hagerstown - Exhibits Bell Pottery, doll/toy collection, historic items from the Civil War. Antique Taxi Display will be open. Featuring new exhibits on Washington County Minor League Baseball History and the Civil War. Open Saturday and Sunday, 1-4pm.
Pry House Field Hospital Museum (301-695-1864 or 800-564-1864), 18906 Shepherdstown Pike, Sharpsburg - Exhibits detail the development of the Union Army's field hospital system, under the direction of Dr. Jonathan Letterman, just before the Battle of Antietam. The house was used by Letterman and General McClellan as their headquarters. President Lincoln also visited mortally wounded Gen. Richardson at the house in October 1862. The large bank barn adjacent to the house was used as an enlisted field hospital. Interpretation includes a 19th century kitchen and medicinal gardens. Open Saturday and Sunday, 11am-5pm.
Sharpsburg Historical Society (301-992-9767) Sharpsburg Town Hall, 106 East Main Street, Sharpsburg - Displays, documents, and family histories of the oldest town in Washington County. Open Saturday only, 10am-4pm.
Washington County Museum of Fine Arts (301-739-5727) 401 Museum Drive, City Park, Hagerstown - The Crown Jewel of Washington County. Special fine art exhibits, including "American Watercolor Society 143rd International Exhibition", "Nineteenth Centuryamerican Art", and "Public School Art Exhibition - Elementary School". Open Saturday, 9am-4pm and Sunday, 1-5pm.
Washington County Rural Heritage Museum (240-313-2839), 7313 Sharpsburg Pike (MD65), Boonsboro, 7 miles south of I-70 (exit #29) - Come see rural heritage in Washington County! Two museum buildings depict life prior to 1940 including many artifacts, implements, and new exhibits. Open Saturday, 10am-4pm and Sunday, 1-5pm.
Washington Monument State Park and Museum, and South Mountain State Battlefield (301-791-4767) - The Washington Monument, atop South Mountain near Boonsboro, is the first in the nation that was completed in honor of U.S. President George Washington. Tour the small museum, with its fascinating collection. Also see displays from the Sep. 14, 1862, Battle of South Mountain.
Williamsport Town Museum (301-223-5854 or 301-223-7229), 14 Springfield Lane, Williamsport - Displays include Williamsport Memorabilia, WHS School Room, 1936 Flood display, Civil War, WWII - complete set of "DugOuts" and much more. Refreshments. Open Sunday only, 1-4pm.

This information was provided by the Hagerstown/Washington County Convention and Visitor's Bureau - www.marylandmemories.com