Havre de Grace: It's First Fridays and time for watermelon, concert in the park

Have a hot time in Havre de Grace Fridayt, dear readers,

It's First Fridays tonight (Friday, Aug. 3) from 5 to 9 p.m. in downtown. Enjoy fun and frolicking – after all, the first week of August is National Clown Week. No fooling!

Today is also National Watermelon Day. Watermelons originated in the Kalahari Desert region of Africa. Cool off with a watermelon wedge at First Fridays; it's 92 percent water. Thump and buy your watermelon at Saturday's Farmers Market, 450 Pennington Ave., 9 a.m. to noon, near the Havre de Grace Visitors Center, Chamber of Commerce building. Happy watermelon slurping!

Some may like it hot, but our recent Maryland weather has been sweltering, even reaching record temperatures! So if you like it hot, hot, hot, check out the rescheduled Gloucester City String Band concert, tonight at 7:30 p.m. in Tydings Park. Enjoy Golden Slippers, ragtime and show tunes in Mummer's strutting style. The concert is free. There is no rain location. Please bring chairs and picnics. For details, phone 410-939-2100. Thanks, Mary Boehly.

The annual Children's Art Contest sponsored by the Havre de Grace Arts Commission has begun and runs through Sept. 1 for youngsters ages 3 through 9. The theme is "my favorite pet." Submit your child's artwork to the Havre de Grace Public Library, Union Avenue, 443-502-2562.

A free, hot luncheon will be served by volunteers at Grace Place Serving Place, St. John's Episcopal Church, 410-939-2107 on Aug. 7, from 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to anyone in need who enters.

Guided historic walking tours of Havre de Grace are available ($12 ticket) on the third weekend of the month, Saturdays at 10 a.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. or by appointment, 410-939-0565. To take the 1 1/2 hour tour, reservations are required – buy tickets also at mainstreethdg.com.

Lady Luck smiles! The Knights of Columbus are selling raffle tickets ($1) for a grand prize, 2013 Ford Mustang automobile. The drawing will be Oct. 6 and you need not be present to win. Phone St. Patrick's Church, 410-939-2525 for details.

Be warned! Prepare early for the Havre de Grace community-wide yard sale, Sept. 15 (rain date Sept. 16) 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Spaces are available at $10. Details at 410-939-6562 or 410-939-2100.

Happy birthday wishes Debbie Heydt (Aug. 4); Jessica Shank and Pastor Ed Heydt (Aug. 6); and Richard Collins (Aug. 8).

Have you seen it? Kudos to Shawn Forton, who is finishing a mural on the old Havre de Grace railroad station wall behind the Susquehanna Hose Company firehouse at Warren and Juniata streets. The background, a Maryland state flag, is dotted with images of Havre de Grace and Chesapeake Bay attractions. Well done, Shawn.

Friends of Jerusalem Mill in Kingsville will host a summer concert Aug. 5 at 6 p.m. with Great Train Robbery, 410-877-3560.

Friends of the Concord Point Lighthouse reminded me Aug. 7 is National Lighthouse Day by a Congressional resolution on Aug. 7, 1989. On this date in 1789, Congress approved the establishment and support of lighthouse, beacons, buoys and public piers.

Sarah Fields dropped off information about the OPAC – Ontario-Otsego People Active in their community – participation in the National Night Out, Tuesday, Aug. 7. Neighbors are encouraged to go outside and stroll the area from 7 to 9 p.m. Turn on your porch light, help deter crime and get to know your Havre de Grace neighbors. Refreshments will be in the 600 block of Ontario Street, if you care to venture over. Dr. David Jaffe, president of OPAC, said city officials and police officers often stop and share concerns and issues. See you outside! Details at 443-617-1775.

Lookout! While enjoying National Night Out Tuesday, I'll double dare you to walk the Promenade boardwalk or shoreline. August 7 is also National Sea Serpent Day. Or are you too fearful that you may encounter Chessie, our own Chesapeake Bay's local version of the Loch Ness monster?

This week is National Friendship Week. Havre de Grace has sister city links will Sillamae, Estonia and LeHavre (de Grace) France. So, we are extending our friendships globally. Use this week's inspiration...why not phone, write or e-mail a pal or friend that you have not heard from for awhile?

Enjoy the 32nd Havre de Grace Seafood Festival in Tydings Park, Friday through Sunday, Aug. 10, 11 and 12 (Friday, 4 to 8 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) Sample seafood delicacies from near and afar, while enjoying live entertainment, artisans and crafters and retail vendors. Welcome to the Marshall Tucker Band, live in concert, Friday, Aug. 10. Admission to the festival is free. For more information, or concert tickets, phone 410-939-1525 or visit http://www.hdgseafoodfestival.org.

Plan now! The 49th Havre de Grace Art Show will be held Aug. 18 and 19, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Tydings Park, by Soroptimist International. 410-939-9342; hdgartshow@gmail.com. Good show!

Joe Kochenderfer wrote me about Boy Scout Troop 967 at summer camp. The troop from Havre de Grace United Methodist Church attended camp from July 8 to 14 at the Broad Creek Memorial Scout Reservation in Harford County. In a joint fellowship with Troop 400 of Delta, Pa., they camped at the Pioneer site in the Camp Saffran area. Boys attending from Troop 967 included Matthew Rovine, Ben Schulz and Caleb Scott, who were able to earn merit badges in basketry, orienteering, Indian lore, fingerprinting, sports and emergency preparedness. They also participated in the camp wide games competition and hosted a parents' picnic.

At the camp-wide Friday night campfire, Senior Patrol Leader Rovine acted as one of the masters of ceremonies for this special occasion. Adults from Troop 967 who supported the week long program included Michele Rovine and Scoutmaster Clark Old. The troop meets every Wednesday evening at 7 p.m. in the social room of the church at the corner of Union and Congress Avenues in Havre de Grace. Boys or adults interested in exploring the scouting program and activities are invited to visit or to contact the scoutmaster, 410-939-6488, for further information.

Keep me informed at 410-939-6562 or by note at 226 N. Union Ave. It is always a pleasure to hear from you and chat. See ya!

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