Column: What could have been had The Graw stayed open

It's Armed Forces Day dear readers.

Saturday is also the running of the 137th Preakness, part of the Triple Crown. After the Kentucky Derby, now Maryland gets to shine. Lots of hoopla and black-eyed Susans will be the fare at the Pimlico Racetrack. Regretfully, Havre de Grace lost out of this and many other races, when the famous Havre de Grace Racetrack, nicknamed "The Graw" on Old Bay Lane, closed in 1950, and its races were transferred to Pimlico. Much of our ol' racetrack still stands on the grounds of the Maryland National Guard.


The Havre de Grace Farmers Market continues on Saturdays, 9 a.m. to noon, at 450 Pennington Ave.

Cathy Vincenti and Charlie Mike reminded me that Independence Day T-shirts are available at the Havre de Grace Visitors Center, 450 Pennington Ave., 410-939-2160 for $7.


A historic/nature walk on the North Park Trail will start Saturday at 10 a.m. Meet for the free, one-hour tour at the Susquehanna Museum at the Lock House, 410-939-5780; email:; visit

Mozart's "Don Giovanni" will be performed Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2:30 p.m. at Perryville High School auditorium. For tickets, visit or phone Sarah, 410-939-2107.

On May 21, our neighbors to the north, Canadians will celebrate Victoria Day.

Grace Place Serving Center will serve a free, hot meal at St. John's Episcopal Church, 114 N. Union Ave. in Havre de Grace, May 22 from 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Phone 410-939-2107 for details. Volunteers will serve the luncheon to anyone in need who enters.

Mary Poughkeepsie and Stephen Formwalt told me about the artist reception with wine and light hors d'oeuvres at the Simply Art and Gift Gallery, 156 Franklin St., from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Artists are from the local area. Contact 410-939-6129, or

Birthday, birthday, who has a birthday?? Mike Tarbert and Ryan Andreen (May 19); and Victor Petrosino and Linda Noll (May 25). Congratulations. Happy anniversary Adam Datesman and Julie Ducharme (May 18).

Celebrate World Turtle Day May 24 with a walk along the shoreline at the Havre de Grace Promenade. Maybe you will see a turtle!

Terri Glenn notified me about the Havre de Grace Senior Center, 410-939-5121, activities for May which is "Older American Month." Jewelry workshop (May 22, 1 p.m., $15 fee); blood pressure and stroke risk assessment (May 23, 10 a.m. to noon); popcorn and movie day viewing "War Horse" (May 24, 1 p.m.); Spring Fling Dance, music from the '50s and '60s (May 25, 1 p.m.); center closed for Memorial Day (May 28); Lighthouse Cafe Coffee Talk (May 29, 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.). The center is on Lewis Lane near the middle school.


Don Lay is enthusiastic about the Roundabouts performance Saturday, 8 p.m. to midnight the Havre de Grace Community Center, 100 Lagaret Lane. Tickets are $25 at the Visitors Center, 410-939-2100, Vincenti Decoys, 410-734-7709, or Java by the Bay coffee shoppe, 410-939-0227.

Don't be shocked! Here's some electrifying news - May is National Electrical Safety Month.

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Skin cancer is the most common of all cancer types. Did you know that skin cancer is diagnosed more each year than the cancers of the prostate, breast, lung, colon, uterus, ovaries and pancreas combined? I was diagnosed with melanoma on my right leg; if caught and treated early, skin cancer can be avoided. Check with your doctor.

Carolyn Colburn told me about the Havre de Grace Maritime Museum Secret Gardens Tour Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Enjoy some of Havre de Grace's beautiful gardens and landscaped yards. Tickets ($20) are at the museum on Lafayette Street. Enjoy the flower mart at the museum, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. for free. Contact 410-939-4800, or

Debbie McFadden phoned with news from the Elks Lodge, Route 40, 410-939-4239 or 410-939-9800. A yard sale will be held Saturday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., rain or shine. Tables are $10. Pit beef and a bake sale will also be available.

On Sunday, enjoy an Elks all-you-can-eat breakfast for $8.


Havre de Grace held a successful yard sale April 21 throughout the town, but a funny thing happened to me afterward. Friend Tony Silvestri had also set up at the guesthouse for the yard sale with many items, including a copy of a Native American painting. One lady visitor admired the copy and related to us that she knew the artist as an acquaintance back home in Oklahoma. Friends accompanying her asked Tony not to sell the framed painting to her though, since she suffered from dementia and they were just on an outing to enjoy the fine weather. The painting never sold on the 21st and Tony asked if he could leave it in my garage to be picked up in the future. That was very fortunate; since on April 30 I received a phone call from Pastor Ben Cordle of Bible Baptist Church in Aberdeen asking about the whereabouts of the Native American painting and if it had been sold. It seems that the lady who admired the painting initially to Tony, told her husband about it and they were visiting the Baptist Church for an extended stay from Oklahoma. The pastor sought the painting for the husband to present to his wife and dropped by that evening to pay $15 and retrieve the painting for the Oklahomans, who plan to have the copy signed by the artist when they return home to Oklahoma. What an unusual souvenir from a Havre de Grace yard sale!

Please keep me informed at 410-939-6562 or 226 N. Union Ave. Next community yard sale Sept. 15. See ya then!