DNREC-sponsored 12th annual Blackbird Creek Fall Festival to celebrate Delaware natural treasures Oct. 19

TOWNSEND – Autumn’s vibrant foliage will be on full display within the lush landscape and pristine waters of the Blackbird Creek Reserve at the 12th Annual Blackbird Creek Fall Festival Saturday, Oct. 19 on the Delaware Bayshore Byway. The festival takes place rain or shine, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Blackbird Creek Reserve, 801 Blackbird Landing Road near Townsend. The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve (DNERR) and DNREC’s Delaware Coastal Programs host the festival along the banks of Blackbird Creek.

“The Blackbird Creek Fall Festival showcases one of Delaware’s natural treasures and provides an opportunity for visitors to experience first-hand some of our state’s unique environmental wonders,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “Plus, the lineup of activities for all ages, food, and music make this a fun and educational event that the entire family can enjoy.”

The Black Creek Fall Festival is DNERR’s largest event of the year. This year’s festival features a fall native plant sale held for the first time in conjunction with Delaware Wildlands. Additionally, the festival offers traditional crafts and demonstrations by a blacksmith, hands-on learning about the estuary, canoeing, live music and kids’ activities. Visitors may also browse the works of artisans and exhibitors, enjoy hayrides and a hay maze, learn to cast a fishing line, go on a guided hike of the reserve, and check out Native American cultural demonstrations. The musical lineup for the day includes the Smyrna High School Drum Line, Jerry “Crabmeat” Thompson, Bryan Scar, and East of the Mason Dixon Line.

Families also can get a “passport” and earn a prize by visiting all the participating stations throughout the festival, learning about the natural resources and heritage of the Delaware Bay through games, demonstrations and challenges. Food vendors will also be on-site to provide a variety of food and snacks for purchase.

For more information on the Blackbird Creek Fall Festival, contact Maggie Pletta, Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve, 302-739-6377 or visit http://de.gov/blackbirdfestival.

Contact: Maggie Pletta, DNREC Delaware Coastal Programs, 302-739-6377

Vol. 49, No. 244


DNREC’s First State Heritage Park First Saturday celebrates historic music in Delaware June 1

DOVER – DNREC’s First State Heritage Park will take a closer look at types of 18th-century music in Delaware from 9 a.m.– 4:30 p.m. Saturday, June 1 at the John Bell House on The Green. The public is invited to have some fun and sing along with “Music and Song in a Public House.”

Other sites within the First State Heritage Park will also delve into a variety of other aspects of music from around the world. Children will be able to create their own musical instrument by taking part in the Biggs Kids program at the Biggs Museum of American Art. The Johnson Victrola Museum will be celebrating African-American Music Appreciation Month with guided tours focusing on the impact of people of color on the music industry throughout the world. Visitors can also learn about the origins of country music at the “Play that Old Time Country Music” lecture presented at the Old State House.

First Saturday Activities: Saturday, June 1

9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Music and Song in a Public House
John Bell House, 43 The Green
Sing along while learning the importance of music and song in the 18th century.

Black Music Month Celebration
Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New Street
In celebration of African-American Music Appreciation Month, guided tours will highlight the contributions African-American artists have made to music around the world.

Biggs Kids – Kazoos
Biggs Museum of American Art, 406 Federal Street
Learn how music and art work together, by making and decorating your own musical instrument.

A Capitol Experience
Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Avenue
Experience Delaware history at Delaware’s state capital building. Photo ID is required for all adults entering the building.

10 a.m. – 3 p.m. (Last tour leaves at 3 p.m.)

Stories of The Green Walking Tour
Meet at the John Bell House on The Green
For 300 years, The Green has been the center of commerce, politics and civic life in Dover. Guided walks through the historic district reveal the people and events that left their mark on Dover’s history.

10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Guided Tours
At Woodburn – The Governor’s House, 151 Kings Highway
Enjoy guided tours of the official residence of Delaware’s Governor since 1965.

10:30 a.m.

An Unsurpassed Soldiery: The Delaware Regiment during the American Revolution
Delaware Public Archives, 121 Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard North
This presentation by historian Charles Fithian will offer some of the preliminary findings of a new study of the Delaware Regiment, and will describe some of the distinctive features of its service.

1:30 p.m.

Play That Old Time Country Music
The Old State House, 25 The Green
This lecture discusses the early roots of country music with the Victor Talking Machine Company. Visitors can enjoy this educational presentation with original 78 rpm recordings.

1:30 – 4 p.m. (Last tour begins at 4 p.m.)

“The Once and Future Courthouse”
Historic Kent County Courthouse, Courtroom #1, 38 The Green, meet on front steps
From the 1690s to the present, learn how this site went from a courthouse to a hotel and back again.

Admission to all park sites and programs is free. Centrally-located free parking is available at the First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries, located at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard North. For more information about “First Saturday” events and all First State Heritage Park programs, please call 302-739-9194 or visit destateparks.com/heritagepark.

The First State Heritage Park is Delaware’s first urban “park without boundaries,” linking historic and cultural sites in the city that has been the seat of state government since 1777. The park is a partnership of state agencies under the leadership of DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation, working in collaboration with city and county government, nonprofit organizations and the private sector.

Media Contact: Beth Shockley, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902


Delaware Division of the Arts Announces 2019 Individual Artist Fellowship Awardees

Twenty Delaware artists and three Honorable Mentions
to receive recognition

Wilmington, Del. (January 14, 2019) – Twenty Delaware artists are being recognized by the Division for the high quality of their artwork. Work samples from 136 Delaware choreographers, composers, musicians, writers, folk and visual artists were reviewed by out-of-state arts professionals, considering demonstrated creativity and skill in their art form. The 20 selected fellows reside throughout Delaware including Bear, Bridgeville, Claymont, Dover, Frankford, Lewes, Middletown, Newark, and Wilmington.

Awards are given in three categories – $10,000 for the Masters Award, $6,000 for the Established Professional Award, and $3,000 for the Emerging Professional Award – and Fellows are required to offer at least one exhibit or performance during the upcoming year, providing an opportunity for the public to experience their work.

“Individual Artist Fellowship grants provide the recognition and exposure that artists need to successfully promote their work,” said Paul Weagraff, director of Delaware Division of the Arts. “The financial award allows them to pursue advanced training, purchase equipment and materials, or fulfill other needs to advance their careers.”

The work of the Fellows will be featured in a group exhibition, Award Winners XIX, at the Biggs Museum from June 7 to July 21, 2019. Selections from Award Winners will travel to CAMP Rehoboth in August and early September and then Cab Calloway School of the Arts during September and October.

The Masters Fellowship is open to differing artistic disciplines each year. In Fiscal Year 2019, Masters Fellowship applications were accepted in Literary and Media Arts from artists who had previously received an Established Professional Fellowship. In addition to exemplifying high artistic quality, Masters Fellowship applicants must demonstrate their involvement and commitment to the arts in Delaware and beyond. Listed below are the Delaware Division of the Arts 2019 Individual Artist Fellows and three Honorable Mentions.

Billie Travalini has been awarded this year’s Masters Fellowship in Literature: Fiction. Travalini, an internationally award-winning writer and educator, teaches English and creative writing at Wilmington University. She has taught creative writing to encourage critical thinking at youth detention centers statewide, which led to Teaching Troubled Youth: A Practical Pedagogical Guide, an award-winning book with an important message on the human condition. In addition, she has taught poetry and playwriting at various Boys and Girls Clubs. In 2014, Travalini received the Governor’s Award for the Arts for her extensive career and work in education. Travalini, co-founder and coordinator of the Lewes Creative Writers’ Conference, is currently working with Fort DuPont to have the children of Governor Bacon remembered by serving the children of today. Her passion for creative writing has led her to “promote the need to include everyone in the conversation.”


2019 Individual Artist Fellows

Masters Award ($10,000)

Name Community Artistic Discipline
Billie Travalini Wilmington Literature: Fiction

Established Professional Award ($6,000)

Name Community Artistic Discipline
Susan Bernacik Wilmington Visual Arts: Works on Paper
Shawn Faust Bear Visual Arts: Painting
Don Foster Dover Literature: Fiction
Daniel Jackson Claymont Visual Arts: Photography
Shelley Kelley Newark Folk Art: Music
Leslie Hsu Oh Middletown Literature: Creative Nonfiction
Chet’la Sebree Middletown Literature: Poetry
IVA Wilmington Music: Solo Recital

Emerging Artist Award ($3,000)

Name Community Artistic Discipline
Jenifer Adams-Mitchell Frankford Literature: Fiction
Kevin J. Cope Newark Music: Solo Recital
Kaitlyn Evans Lewes Visual Arts: Crafts
Matthew Glick Claymont Visual Arts: Works on Paper
Geraldo Gonzalez Wilmington Folk Arts: Visual Arts
Karen Hurley-Heyman Newark Literature: Poetry
Mary-Margaret Pauer Bridgeville Literature: Creative Nonfiction
D.H. Regnier Newark Music: Composition
Gregg Silvis Newark Visual Arts: Sculpture
G.W. Thompson Lewes Visual Arts: Painting
Shannon Woodloe Wilmington Visual Arts: Photography

Honorable Mention

Name Community Artistic Discipline
Howard Eberle Lewes Visual Arts: Works on Paper
Jane Miller Wilmington Literature: Poetry
Jim Salt Newark Literature: Fiction

To contact an individual artist, please email or call: Roxanne Stanulis, Program Officer, Artist Programs and Services, Roxanne.Stanulis@delaware.gov or 302-577-8283.

The next deadline for Individual Artist Fellowship applications will be Thursday, August 1, 2019 by 4:30 p.m.

Learn more

About the Delaware Division of the Arts
The Delaware Division of the Arts is an agency of the State of Delaware. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. Funding for Division programs is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit arts.delaware.gov or call 302-577-8278. Image: 2018 Award Winners exhibition at the Biggs Museum. Painting (right) by Thomas del Porte, 2018 Established Professional, Visual Arts: painting

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Contact: Leeann Wallett, Program Officer, Communications and Marketing
302-577-8280, leeann.wallett@delaware.gov


Tickets now on sale for Kent Conservation District’s 19th Annual Barn Dance fundraiser on Oct. 12

The logo for the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental ControlDOVER – The Kent Conservation District invites everyone to a rompin’, stompin’ good time at its 19th Annual Barn Dance fundraiser to be held from 6 to 11 p.m. Friday, Oct. 12 at the Harrington Fire Company, 20 Clark Street, Harrington, DE 19952. The event features a down-home meal including beef and dumplings, fried chicken, and all the fixings, plus live and silent benefit auctions, and dancing to DJ music.

Tickets are now on sale for $20 per person or $35 per couple. Tickets for children 12 years and under are $10 each, while children under two are admitted free. Reserved tables seating eight are available for $150, and must be reserved in one name and paid by a single check.

Funds raised through the Barn Dance support the Delaware Envirothon, an annual competitive, problem-solving, natural resource challenge for high school students which is co-sponsored by DNREC. Additionally, DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship guides the Conservation Districts staff in providing technical and financial assistance to Delaware’s farmers, landowners, and homeowners to protect and enhance the state’s soil and water resources.

For tickets or more information, please call the Kent Conservation District at 302-741-2600, ext. 3.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 48, No. 226


DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation’s annual Summer Concert Series underway

DOVER – DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation’s popular Summer Concert Series is now underway featuring performances at six state parks across the state.

The concerts feature music for everyone in every genre, from modern/alternative to folk at Bellevue State Park, White Clay Creek State Park, Killens Pond State Park, Holts Landing State Park, Trap Pond State Park, and Wilmington State Parks including Rockford Park and The Sugar Bowl at Brandywine Park. Most concerts begin at 6:30 p.m.

The Summer Concert Series is sponsored by Drive Sober Arrive Alive DE, Dogfish Head, Friends of Bellevue State Park, Friends of White Clay Creek State Park, Friends of Wilmington Parks, Friends of Killens Pond State Park, Friends of Holts Landing State Park and Trap Pond Partners.

For more information, including times and dates, visit www.destateparks.com/summerconcerts/

Contact: Beth Shockley, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 48, No. 153