This weekend, What to Do & Where to Go goes Behind the Scenes to Heritage Days, a two-day, county-wide festival featuring historic, cultural and green sites in Montgomery County. All events and activities are presented free of charge.
With all the office buildings and strip malls sprouting up, many of us forget that Montgomery County was settled in the 1750s. But, dig around and you’ll find layers of local history under all that shiny newness. Let’s see what’s in your backyard and northwest along the river, Potomac.
First of all don't miss the very scenic Seneca Aqueduct-Lock and Riley’s Lockhouse on River Road and Riley’s Lock Road in Poolesville. And, make sure you swing by Historic St. Paul Community Church—Tour this historic 1893 church and cemetery, see artifacts and historical documents. At 2:30 p.m., meet Nettie Branison Johnson (1883-1968), the daughter-in-law of former slave Philip Johnson, and who was a midwife and matriarch of the community. Music of African-American slavery and the Underground Railroad by Jubilee Voices at 3:15pm.
Blockhouse Point Civil War Experience—Walk in the footsteps of Civil War Union Soldiers and see the remains of an 1862 outpost camp and blockhouse. The 2-mile hikes/guided tours, which run along an easy-to-moderate natural surface trail, begin at noon, 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. Meet in the parking area of Callithea Horse Farm across from Signal Tree Lane.
Edward's Ferry—Saturday only, let reenactors tell you the tales of Edward's Ferry during the Civil War. Experience the music of the Civil War as performed by Doug Jimmerson, an American concert tenor and musicologist specializing in historical and patriotic American music. Take a tour of the beautifully restored circa 1840 Lockhouse offered by the Canal Quarters and hear an interpreter explain its history. Information on local hiking, biking and water trails will be available.
Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard—Tour Montgomery County's only vineyard/winery. The 85-acre farm includes a restored red barn, silo and windmill and abuts the scenic Sugarloaf Mountain, a Registered National Landmark. Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard grows the five Bordeaux red grapes (Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot) and two white grapes (Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio).Taste the local wines for a small charge. Open until 6 p.m. on both days.
This weekend, take a journey down the street, across the county, back in time or across an ocean with Heritage Days. Click here to see the full brochure of all sites and activities.