Currently viewing the tag: "colorfest"

Hamrick and Buehrer Win in Unopposed Election

James Rada, Jr.

Thurmont Commissioners Wes Hamrick and Bill Buehrer retained their seats on the Thurmont Board of Commissioners after the town election on October 27, 2015.

A total of 209 residents voted in the town election, and although both men were running unopposed, neither candidate garnered the total support of the votes. Hamrick received 199 votes and Buehrer received 167 votes.

The difference was made up of write-in votes for seven different candidates, including former Thurmont Chief Administrative Officer Bill Blakeslee.

Hamrick and Buehrer were sworn in during the November 3 town meeting.

“I know Wes and I are most appreciative,” Buehrer said of the people who turned out to vote.

He said that he wished more people had turned out to vote, but that at least the turnout wasn’t as low as the town election in Emmitsburg, which also had two commissioners running unopposed.

Buehrer and Hamrick had both posted campaign signs around town in the hopes of encouraging voters to come out and vote, but the commissioners heard after the election that some people had forgotten about the election since there weren’t any major issues or contested races involved. Mayor John Kinnaird said that he would like to set sign boards and banners up for the next election to hopefully avoid the problem of low voter turnout.

This will be Buehrer’s second term on the board and Hamrick’s first full term. Hamrick won the special election to fill the unexpired term of John Kinnaird when he was elected mayor in 2013.

Fall Fundraiser at Lawyer’s Farm a Huge Success

lawyer fundraiserThanks to all participants who helped to raise $12,238 for the American Cancer Society (ACS) and $776 for the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA) during the Lawyer’s Farm 2nd Annual Fall Fundraiser on November 1, 2015.

This year, Lawyer’s “Hogan Strong” corn maze was made in the shape of Maryland Governor Larry Hogan’s image. Governor Hogan and his family attended the event. Taylor (Lawyer) Huffman of Lawyer’s Farm said, “We had a beautiful day, and Governor Hogan said that even though a concert by Tim McGraw with a ‘shout-out’ was great, being in a field of corn for a great cause was the highlight of being Governor so far!” He donated $1,500 from the Hogan Strong campaign to the fundraiser.

Frederick County’s Chief Executive Officer Jan Gardner signed a proclamation that November 1 is Jan Lawyer Day in Frederick County! Jan Lawyer is Taylor’s father, who succumbed to brain cancer in December 2013. Jan Lawyer was a driving force behind Lawyer’s Farm operations, and is remembered because of his outgoing, friendly personality and his driven work ethics. Taylor expressed, “That was certainly the highlight of my day! So cool.”

To make donations to these causes, please visit the and find the Fall Fundraiser tab, with links to donate to ACS or ABTA.

Thurmont’s Think Pink Raises $10,000 for Patty Hurwitz Fund

Deb Spalding

DSC_1875Thurmont  Rocks! The check says $9,407; however, with a few last minute business and personal donations, Think Pink ends up raising a total of $10,000 in the month of October for the Patty Hurwitz Fund at Frederick Memorial Hospital (FMH). All of the funds stay in Frederick County to help people with cancer.

Extended gratitude goes out to all of the participating businesses; customers who patronized the participating businesses; all who turned on a pink light bulb; those who walked, ran, or donated to the Thurmont Think Pink 5K; those who participated in the Think Pink Paint Night; and those who purchased tote bags, cookbooks, decals, or a T-shirt.

The vast community support for Think Pink further demonstrates that Thurmont is a superior municipality in Frederick County, because this is a community that unites for a greater cause!

Thurmont Think Pink Businesses and Organizations: YOU are the core of this program. A thank you seems so insignificant for all of your dedication and contributions for The Patty Hurwitz Fund at FMH, and a Gateway To The Cure, so please know how much you make the difference for this extremely worthy cause.

Thurmont presented a check with proceeds from Thurmont’s Think Pink to the Patty Hurwitz Fund. Pictured from left are Jim Humerick, Thurmont Chief Administrative Officer; Bill Buehrer, Town Commissioner; Vickie Grinder, Thurmont Main Street Manager; Wayne Hooper, Town Commissioner; Mayor John Kinnaird; Patty Hurwitz;  Martin Burns, Town Commissioner; Jeff Hurwitz; and Wes Hamrick, Town Commissioner.

Colorfest Donates Nearly $17,000 to Thurmont Organizations

James Rada, Jr.

Colorfest donationsWhile the Colorfest event in October over for this year, monetary donations to town organizations were made during the Colorfest annual meeting at Simply Asia in Thurmont on November 9, 2015.

“I think everybody was happy with the weekend. I don’t know what we could have done better,” said Colorfest President Carol Robertson, speaking about October’s Colorfest weekend.

During the weekend, the Town of Thurmont issued 713 permits to vendors, including 552 craft vendors. Robertson also said that on the Monday following the end of Colorfest, she started getting calls from vendors who want to participate in 2016, and on the Wednesday after Colorfest, she started getting applications from returning vendors.

“And it hasn’t stopped yet,” she said.

Many organizations in Thurmont have booths at Colorfest to hold fundraisers, and organizations that have the room also rent spaces to vendors. These create significant income streams for the organizations. In addition, Colorfest, Inc. makes annual donations each year to different organizations.

From December 2014 to November 2015, Colorfest made the following donations:

  • $1,500 to Guardian Hose


  • $1,500 to Thurmont Ambulance Company plus $500 worth of vendor space.
  • $1,500 to the Thurmont Police Department.
  • $2,551.80 to Catoctin High FFA.
  • $3,500 worth of Catoctin High scholarships.
  • $300 for straw for the Town of Thurmont.
  • $80 for the Town Gardens.
  • $2,500 to the Thurmont commissioners to hopefully be used for town parks.
  • $50 gift card for the Thurmont road crews.
  • $1,800 worth of canned hams to the Thurmont Food Bank plus $500 in the spring and $200 in the fall.
  • $100 to the Thurmont Regional Library.
  • $200 for Thurmont Christmas decorations.
  • $150 to Thurmont Main Street.

The grand total of all of the donations was $16,932.80.

Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird told Robertson, “The entire community has benefitted from your crafters and other crafters in town for Colorfest.”

Catoctin Colorfest President Carol Robertson presents Thurmont Food Bank Coordinator Rev. Sally Joyner Giffin the first of 800 canned hams that Catoctin Colorfest, Inc. donated to the food bank.

Emmitsburg Certified a Sustainable Maryland Community

James Rada, Jr.

Emmitsburg SM Awards Photo 2015  Dave Haller and Mayor Don   Briggs (2)Emmitsburg was one of twelve Maryland towns honored at the Sustainable Maryland Awards Ceremony at the Maryland Municipal League’s annual Fall Conference, held in Cambridge at the end of October.

Emmitsburg has been working toward the certification for a year.

“We had many things lined up and done before we even applied,” said Mayor Don Briggs.

Highlights of the things that Emmitsburg did to earn the certification include:

  • Completed the replacement of all 330 town-owned streetlights with LED energy-efficient bulbs,  cutting streetlight energy use by nearly 70 percent and the town’s  overall energy use by 10 percent.
  • Installed approximately two  megawatts of solar panels to provide 95-100 percent renewable energy to run a new, state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant.
  • Hosts a weekly Farmers Market.
  • Home to one “Maryland Green School” within its boundaries: Mother Seton School.
  • Maintains a small Community Garden for residents.
  • Adopted a Green Purchasing Policy for procurement of  municipal goods and services.
  • Created a network of fifteen miles of natural surface trails, utilizing over 1,000 hours of volunteer work and approximately $300,000 in private donations.

Some of these things are already saving the town money. Briggs said that replacing the town lights with LED lights did not cost anything because of a grant from the Maryland Department of Energy and rebates from Potomac Edison.

“So we immediately were saving 40 percent on the electric costs,” Briggs said. “Also, the old lights had to be replaced every three years. The LED lights are ten-year lights.”

Briggs said that the town applied for the certification to get recognized for their efforts to create a greener community, and to also support a worthy program in the state.

“It also puts us in a better position to take advantage of things to come,” Briggs said.

To achieve certification, municipalities are required to form a Green Team comprised of local residents, community leaders, municipal staff, and officials; complete a variety of sustainability-related actions worth a total of at least 150 points (including two mandatory actions and two of six priority actions); and submit the appropriate documentation as evidence that the Sustainable Maryland Certified requirements have been satisfied.

“We are excited to welcome more municipalities to the growing Sustainable Maryland community,” said Dan Nees, director of the Environmental Finance Center. “This program is a hallmark of our work at the Environmental Finance Center, guiding communities towards healthier, more sustainable futures. Each certification award represents the commitment of local elected officials, municipal staff, and Green Team volunteers in these towns and cities to create a stronger, more resilient Maryland.”

Brunswick was the only other Frederick County community to receive a certification as a Maryland Sustainable Community. Only 19 percent of Maryland municipalities (30) are Sustainable Maryland Certified.

For more information about Sustainable Maryland, visit

Dave Haller, Emmitsburg Town Manager, and Emmitsburg’s Mayor Don Briggs, are shown at the Maryland Municipal League’s annual Fall Conference.

Scotty’s Ride

This year marked the 10th Annual Scotty’s Ride, held September 26, 2015. Riders departed at 10:00 a.m. from Emmitsburg’s Jubilee parking lot, with approximately two hundred motorcycles roaring west on Route 16 to visit their first stop: Blue Ridge Summit Sportsman’s Club. The ride then continued on to the Mountain House, located in McConnellsburg, Pennsylvania. The ride also stopped at Yianni’s Greenwood Tavern in Fayetteville, Pennsylvania (formally Bobbie A’s), and then circled back to Dave and Jane’s Crab House in Fairfield, Pennsylvania.

All Scotty’s Ride participants reunited at Kerry and Val Shorb’s home in Emmitsburg for the “After Ride Celebration”, along with friends and family from all over who didn’t ride but came out to celebrate the benefit event that evening. Approximately four hundred people attended Scotty’s Ride making this one of the largest turnouts for the celebration. Participants enjoyed live entertainment with the band,”RedLine”, a “Closest to the Pin” contest, Corn Hole tournaments, good food and refreshments. John McCabe of Fairfield, Pennsylvania was the winner of the raffle for a 2016 Indian Scout motorcycle or $10,000.

Kerry Shorb was proud to announce that this year marked the tenth annual Scotty’s Ride and to date has donated approximately $100,000 to families and children with medical needs. Scotty’s Ride thanks all of you who came out to support a great cause. Special thanks to the Frederick County Sheriff’s Department, the Frederick County Fire Police, and the Town of Emmitsburg. Sponsors included: My Father’s Footsteps Hair Design, Jubilee Foods, Big Hook Crane & Rigging, Sons of the American Legion Post 121, Francis X Elder Post 121 American Legion, Ladies Auxiliary Post 121, Mountain Liquors, Inc., Trout’s Supreme Seafood, Steve Bittle Tent Rentals, Gettysburg Elementary School, Main Street Sweets, AMVETS Riders Chapter 172, AMVETS Post 172, Toops Troops, Greene’s Trucking, Heritage Cycles, LLC, M & O Exterior Applicators, Inc., Hobbs Cycle, Hillside Inn, AC & T Co., Gateway Farm Market & Candyland, The Ott House, Harrington’s Equipment Co., State Line Gun Exchange, Silo Hill Exxon, Carleo’s Italian Restaurant, The Carriage House Inn, E Plus Copy Center, Window World of Frederick, Ventura’s Restaurant & Pizzeria, Village Book & Table, Rick’s Power Washing & Connie Few, Baugher’s Country Restaurant & Fruit Market, Redland Embroidery & Desserts, Dougherty Ice Co., Napa Auto Parts, Advanced Auto Parts, Ace Distributing, No Anchovies, Paul’s Pit Stop, Beaver Dam Lumber, LLC, Bollinger’s Restaurant, The Links at Gettysburg, Zurgable Brothers, Inc., Rube’s Crab Shack, LLC, Harley Davidson of Frederick, Battlefield Harley Davidson, Sunrise Soap Company, Mountain View Golf Club, Emmitsburg New-Journal, Shriver’s Meats, Grandma Gems Family Restaurant, Tahiti Sun, VCP Vanessa’s Corner Pub, Tony’s Café and Pizzeria, The Palms Restaurant & Bar, Hernley’s Polaris/Victory, Hobbs Auction, McDonalds, Zales Jewelers, Stouffer’s Custom Cycles, Ernie’s Texas Lunch, Blue Ridge Sportsmen’s Association, Inc., Mountain House, Yianni’s Greenwood Tavern, Dave & Jane’s Crab House, Tim & Pam Duffy, Jim Shorb & Nancy Haines, Ronnie Cool, Darin Fitzgerald, Tony Young, Craig Hahn & Candy Richardson, Doug & Angie Foley, Brian & Kim Stavely, Mike & Cheryl Kulkusky, Doug & Laurie Smith, Moe & Pam Kendall, Tim Wantz, Katherine Dowell, Jeannie Clark, Michael & Kathy McCabe, Chuck and Becky Riggs (In Memory of their daughter Brooke).

by Valerie Nusbaum

I can’t wrap my mind around the fact that the holidays are almost here. A few minutes ago, we were sweating and wishing for a break from the heat, and now we’re thinking about Thanksgiving dinner and what to buy Uncle Frank for Christmas. Still, with Thanksgiving approaching, I should acknowledge some things that I’m thankful for.

Randy and I do a little traveling in the fall. In recent years, we’ve done mostly day trips. Though, things don’t always go as smoothly as we’d like. One night, I glanced out the window and saw Randy’s truck pulling up out front. The door flew open, and I looked up to see a scowling, fuming man.

“When did we change our PIN for the ATM?” he fired off.

“We didn’t,” I replied.

My hubby had gone out to run some errands around town, one of which was to get us some cash for our trip to Pennsylvania the next day. He went on to explain that the ATM had spit out the card twice, with the message that he was using an incorrect PIN. He ranted that for the last twenty years, he had been using the same number and now that number wouldn’t work. I asked what number he’d used and he rattled off four digits ending in “9”.

“Well there’s the problem, dear. Our PIN ends in “3”. You just had a brain freeze. Happens all the time to me,” I laughed.

We argued for a while, with each of us sticking to our story; however, in truth, neither of us could say for certain what our PIN number really is. I went upstairs and searched through our old rolodex in the hope that years ago I had written it down. I couldn’t find it there or in the file cabinet. Then my brain turned on, and I looked at Randy and blurted out the correct number. Both of us had been wrong before. His face cleared up, and he agreed that I finally had the right number. We eventually got the mess straightened out.

I’m grateful that our memories aren’t totally gone, that we’re still able to get around, and that the ladies at our bank don’t judge us.

Perhaps we should just give up on using the ATM; on our next outing, we stopped by the bank for some cash. Randy was driving my car. He got a little too close to the building and scraped the tire. I bit my tongue and glared at him. He scowled back at me and proceeded to drop the ATM card out the window. He couldn’t get the car door open far enough to retrieve the card, and the swearing started. There was a car behind us, so we couldn’t back up. I got out, walked around my car, wedged myself between the car and the bank, and picked up the card. I called Randy a bad name, and I apologized to the person behind us. That person shook his head and did not look happy.

We got our money and then drove over to McDonald’s to get some drinks for the road. Randy ordered two senior Diet Cokes. When he pulled around to the window to pay, the young lady took his money and said, “You don’t look like a senior, but ok. Congratulations. You’re doing well.”

Randy spat out, “What the heck does that mean? Should I have said, ‘Why, yes, I’m upright, I’m mobile, and some days I can make water!’” I just looked out the window, hoping that our day would get better. After all, the young woman at McDonald’s hadn’t told me that I was doing well. Evidently, I do look like a senior citizen.

I’m grateful that we’re able to take these trips, that we have a little cash in the bank, and that some businesses give old people a discount.

I am also grateful for MapQuest and GPS, even though Randy often argues with them and tells them how wrong they are.

A nice lady (whose name I didn’t catch) visited us in our booth at Colorfest. She saw our names on our tent banner and wanted to know if we were “that” Randy and Valerie from The Catoctin Banner. I’m always hesitant to admit it until I find out if I’m in trouble, but this lady said she enjoyed reading about us. That same day, a nice gentleman named Russell visited us and told us that he, too, likes reading my column in The Banner.

As always, I’m grateful and amazed that anyone wants to read the things I write, and I’m grateful for my relationships with The Catoctin Banner, Catoctin Colorfest, and the Town of Thurmont.

I’m grateful that my mother and my in-laws are still with us, and I’m thankful for the years I had with my dad. I appreciate my friends—old and new—and I’m grateful for family near and far. Food on the table, clothes on my back, freedom to come and go, and so much more, are things I’m grateful for. Most of all, I’m grateful to have a partner who muddles through life with me. And, of course, I’m thankful for Bill Blakeslee.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you all have much for which to be grateful

by Chris O’Connor

There’s More to Bonnie than Postage Stamps

Sabillasville resident Bonnie DeLauter is a self-described social butterfly who loves to talk.

Many know her as a hard-working employee of the United States Postal Service (USPS), who runs the post office in Cascade and who is a member of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Sabillasville.

I know about her talkative side. She was the first person to befriend me over a decade ago when transferring my then-second grader to Sabillasville Elementary School. We met many times there to join our daughters at lunch. Early on, Bonnie’s gift of gab must have left me looking a bit bewildered while she attempted to fill me in on the lay of the land. Bonnie’s late husband, Steve, noticed the bemused expression on my face. He glanced at me and said, “Confusin’ ain’t it?” I chuckled, but Bonnie didn’t miss a beat and continued to educate me on what to expect in the days to come.

Bonnie and Steve met when she was just fourteen. They dated for close to a decade before marrying in 1982. She worked as a bus driver before taking the civil service exam some thirty years ago and was hired by the USPS, working at post offices ranging from rural post offices on the other side of Hagerstown to Libertytown.

Her only sister, Linda, passed away in 2001, but Bonnie treasures and appreciates the company of her Aunt Virginia in Thurmont, and her aunt and uncle, Dorothy and Richard Valentine of Emmitsburg.

Her husband, Steve, worked for a couple of years in the late 1970s for the Western Maryland/Chessie Railroad, until he turned his full attention to the family farm in Sabillasville, producing grains, hay, fruit, and raising cattle until his passing in 2004. Bonnie and her still young daughter, Karen, returned to her parents place, Donald Harbaugh and her late mom Betty Green Harbaugh’s Sabillasville farm. They resided with her dad, Donald, until building a house on the home place in April 2006.

Bonnie is active in a variety of organizations, including the Ladies Auxiliary of American Legion Cascade Post 239, of which she is obviously proud. The Legion sponsors many activities to raise money for Veterans who have served our country and philanthropic organizations such as the Patty Pollatos Fund, a non-profit that helps to financially benefit individuals and families in need while in the throes of devastating illnesses and injuries.

One upcoming fundraiser is a gun raffle on September 26. Bonnie helps out by selling tickets to the raffle and lending a hand the day before with food preparation. Raffle tickets are available to the public for $10.00, and can be obtained from Bonnie at the Cascade Post Office or the Legion Hall on McAfee Hill Road.

The Legion’s Mr. and Mrs. Cascade event is being held on October 10 (Colorfest weekend). The light-hearted occasion finds men and women dressed as the opposite sex, participating in a talent showcase. Bonnie’s description of past contests made the coronation sound like more fun than a barrel of monkeys. It is open to the public.

Local businesses donate products, time, and talents for the Spa Day on October 18, which is also a public event. One can enjoy a massage, makeup, manicure, and hair styling. A donation to the Legion is welcomed and ultimately benefits someone in need, especially those who have honored us with their service.

The wide-reaching significance of the Legion to Veterans and residents of the Cascade area is hard to quantify, but Bonnie conveys a perspective that hints at the reach of the Legion’s helping hand. Profits benefit Veterans of our Armed Forces, as well as children for a back-to-school get-together. At Christmas, members attempt to fulfill the wishes of children at Cascade Elementary, whose families might find purchasing a particular gift unaffordable.

Bonnie recounted many touching, heart-warming deeds accomplished by the Legion’s members, which I hope to recount in a future column.

Some years ago, I was a beneficiary of the Legion’s generosity after breaking my leg and receiving a loaner wheelchair from them, thanks to Bonnie’s intervention on my behalf.

She is also a member the Ladies Auxiliary of South Mountain Rod and Gun Club, located on Rt. 77 in Smithsburg, which opens its doors to non-members during holiday celebrations throughout the year.

One tradition Bonnie revisits is cruising to her childhood stomping grounds in Rocky Ridge, helping out wherever needed at the annual Rocky Ridge Carnival. It also affords her the opportunity to chat with friends she can’t see as frequently as she’d like.

Another of her local haunts is Blue Ridge Sportsmen’s Association in Fairfield, Pennsylvania, where she plays shuffleboard and enjoys a meal and the camaraderie of friends.

Travel is another of Bonnie’s favorite pursuits, though she bemoans the fact that it’s been more than a few years since she has been able to get away. She loves visiting friends in Florida, Oklahoma, and Ohio, while squeezing in one of her favorite spectator sports: bull riding. There’s been a Caribbean cruise or two, and horseback riding at John Flaugher’s place in Florida. John was a great friend to Bonnie’s husband, Steve, and is Karen’s godfather.

Bonnie’s benevolent nature, sense of humor, and easy laugh is testament to her favorite saying, “Life is what you make it.”

James Rada, Jr.

Colorfest, Inc. met for its annual meeting on November 11, 2014, at Simply Asia in Thurmont to elect officers for the coming year and to review its contributions to the Thurmont community.

Colorfest, Inc. earns income from the annual fall festival and returns much of that money back to the community through either cash donations or purchases made on behalf of organizations.

Between December 2013 and November 2014, Colorfest gave $14,486.50 in cash and goods to the Thurmont community.

Here’s how those donations break down: Guardian Hose Company—$1,500; Thurmont Ambulance Company—$1,500; Thurmont Police Department—$1,500; Catoctin High School FFA—$1,164.40 (for a hog purchase at the Community Show, which was donated back and sold again with the proceeds donated to the Thurmont Food Bank); Catoctin High Scholarship—$3,500; Boy Scouts—$50 (for the BSA popcorn fundraiser that was then sent to overseas servicemen); Memorial Day Observance—$25 (for flowers and a wreath at Memorial Park); Straw—$188; Town Gardens—$126.19; Commissioners of Thurmont—$2,000; Gift Card—$50; Thurmont Food Bank—$2,233; Summer Donation—$250; Thurmont Regional Library—$100; Town Christmas Decorations—$200; Thurmont Main Street—$100.

In addition, local businesses and organizations benefit from the increased traffic in town during Catoctin Colorfest weekend. Hotels and restaurants are filled. Gas stations sell more.

Many organizations also use the event as a major fundraiser for their groups. Even residents make money with yard sales.

“We really try to support the local businesses, restaurants, hardware stores, grocery, by buying straw or flowers or Christmas decorations or even printing our brochures and fliers,” said Colorfest President Carol Robertson.

Robertson and all of the current officers are remaining in office for the next year and will continue making contributions to their community.

The 2015 Catoctin Colorfest will be October 10 and 11, 2015.


Halloween Activities – October 25 and October 31

Halloween in the Park activities will take place on October 25, 2014,  at the Thurmont Community Park.  Activities will start at approximately 6:30 p.m. that will include snacks and treats for the kids, along with a Haunted Park theme.  The regular trick-or-treating for the kids will still be held on October 31, from 6:00-7:30 p.m.  Town officials ask that people who want to participate turn on their porch lights. Also, parents are asked to take precautions with kids around the current sidewalk construction that is taking place along the main streets while trick or treating.


Town Approves Purchase of Land for Community Park

Town officials approved plans to purchase land to enlarge the Community Park area. Land surrounding the area east of Route 15 and on the south side of Hunting Creek will be purchased from the current land owner for $6,000. The purchase will be paid for via funds received from the Program Open Space that awarded Thurmont with $20,000 to improve the green space area for the town.


Dog Park Planned at East End Park

Other funds for the Program Open Space will be spent on a dog park, located at East End Park.  Construction will start soon on a 7,000 sq. foot fenced-in area. Two separate areas will be set up to accommodate small dogs in one area and larger dogs in another area.  The dogs will get to enjoy some structures built for climbing. Dog litter receptacles will be provided, along with benches and tables for the owners of the dogs.


Colorfest is Almost Here – October 11-12

Thurmont will again host the largest arts and crafts show in the state of Maryland, Colorfest. Town officials want to give all residents a heads-up to prepare for the crowds coming our way for Colorfest. The ambulance and fire companies, local dance studios, boy scouts, girl scouts, and many more will participate with fundraisers. Many yards sales will also be set up that week and weekend. For any permit questions involving the Colorfest, please call the town office.

View the Town of Thurmont’s website at or call the town office at 301-271-7313 for more information.


Approval on Water Bill Ordinance

Town officials approved an ordinance that would address issues with excessive water bills or questionable meter readings for citizens and/or businesses. If a citizen receives a water bill that is excessive, they can now appeal their bill to the town. Based on details of the appeal, a person or business might be allowed to pay their average water bill amount (average of past three years) instead of the excessive bill they received.


Silo Hill Gets New Playground

Playground equipment that is ADA (American with Disabilities Act) compliant will be installed at the Silo Hill playground area. The playground is funded through a grant to the town. The playground equipment will be installed within the next couple of months.


Bulk Trash Pick-up — October 11

Bulk Trash Pick-up is on Saturday, October 11, 2014. Acceptable items: (2 items max per household) dehumidifiers & humidifiers; washers, dryers, dishwashers, stoves, ovens, etc.; tables, chairs, sofas, toilets, tubs and sinks, exercise equipment; pianos, computers, cabinets, and dressers; furnaces, lawn furniture, water heaters, picnic tables and carpet (max. 3 rolls); air conditioners, refrigerators and freezers (must have certified tag of Freon removed NO TAG = NO PICK UP); lawn mowers (remove gas and oil); gas grills (remove propane tank).


Light in the Park Fall Fest — October 3

The Community Fall Fest “Light in the Park” is Friday, October 3, 2014, from 6:00-9:00 p.m. This event is a family-oriented celebration, sponsored by local churches. Event features free food, free Moon bounce, photo booth, face painting, a barrel train, and other family treats. For more information, call 301-447-4224.

For more information about the Town of Emmitsburg, view the town’s website at or call the town office at 301-600-6300.

by Labella A. Kreiner

This past month has been filled with exciting events surrounding the beginning of the fall season. Our sports teams have trained relentlessly the past couple of months to prepare for the games and competitions ahead.

The Thurmont and Emmitsburg Community Show was a great success, and many of our students participated and were supported by the members of our community.

The great Frederick Fair was held September 13-20, 2014, with many of our students participating in the 4H, FFA, and individual competitions. Homecoming is Saturday, September 27, 2014, with the theme “A Red Carpet Affair.” Discussions regarding prom have already begun. There is a lot to be look forward to this month.

Catoctin held their annual Spirit Week throughout the week of September 22-26, 2014. Catoctin students dressed to match the themes created by our student government. Monday’s theme was Maryland Pride Day, where students sported their favorite Maryland apparel; Tuesday was Tie Dye Day; Wednesday was Hawaiian Day; and Friday was Catoctin Spirit Day, in celebration of the Homecoming Game that evening. It was amazing seeing all of our students showing their school spirit by dressing up to match the different themes each day. Some of our students went all out by wearing the most apparel matching each theme. It was truly a sight to behold.

Our Web Design students have begun taking on the project of uploading our daily bulletin into a video, utilizing the PowToon program, and posting it on our school’s website every morning. This is a great way for student’s parents to stay updated with daily news and upcoming school events. In addition, some of our teachers have used this as a fun alternative to begin class in the morning as a reminder to students of what is coming up in our school.

In October, our football teams have a lot going on. Our freshmen and junior varsity boys will be dueling against Brunswick, Urbana, Middletown, Frederick, and Governor Thomas Johnson. Our Varsity team will be battling against Williamsport, North Hagerstown, Boonsboro, and Smithsburg. Though the beginning of the season has been rocky for all of the teams, there is no doubt that by the end of this month, these mighty cougars will be crushing their opponents.

With Colorfest coming up, some of our students will be active volunteering in the community. The Thurmont Leos will be teaming up with the Thurmont Lions Club to help serve food out by the Community Park. Also, there will be many of our students out working with the venders; so be sure to go out and support our students during one of the most festive times of the year here in Thurmont.

Our Catoctin Literacy Magazine has begun accepting applications from our creative students. This is a great opportunity for students with artistic talents, as it enables them to have another way to express themselves through word and image. The theme decided for this year’s magazine is “Dreams,” with no limitations as to where to go with the theme. The editors have requested both visual and literary entries, and plan on opening the visual applications to all students instead of keeping them reserved for our visual art classes alone.

As always, thank you for
supporting our students by staying informed. Also, thanks to everyone who came out to the Community Show to support the businesses and families in our community.

Next month will bring the closing of the fall athletic season, so remember to stay updated on our school’s scorings and rankings. There’s no doubt that more excitement awaits us in the future. Again, thanks for reading and supporting our students. For more frequent updates and information, check out our school’s webpage at and our school’s twitter @CatoctinHS. I pray everyone has a fantastic October.

If you have any suggestions or comments about this article, please feel free to email me at

by Michele Cuseo




Town Election, September 30

Two positions open for election are the Mayor’s seat, currently held by Don Briggs, and one commissioner’s seat, currently held by Chris Staiger. Mayor Briggs plans to run for re-election, and Commissioner Staiger has stated he will not run again. Joe Ritz, Emmitsburg resident, has stated his intention to run for the commissioner’s seat. All positions are for a three-year term.

The election will be held at 22 East Main Street, from 7:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. Last day to register to vote is September 9. For any further questions, call the town office.


Pippinfest 34th Annual Event, September 28 & 29

The local Pippinfest in Fairfield, Pennsylvania, is expected to draw large crowds this year. Pippinfest has been a cherished event for the past three decades, offering visitors a fine selection of arts, crafts, food, music, and many other fun activities. Pippinfest literally means “apple festival” and boasts many delectable apple treats at the event.

Live musical groups and organizations will be set up to celebrate the harvest, the local traditions, and the community. Anyone interested in participating in Pippinfest can call the Fairfield town office at 717-647-5640.


For more information about the Town of Emmitsburg, view the town’s website at or call the town office at 301-600-6300.




Limited Edition Prints for Sale

The Thurmont Lions Club is selling a group of 250 fine quality limited-edition prints depicting the Thurmont Trolley Mural paintings by artist Yemi. All proceeds will benefit the Trolley Substation refurbishing project. Also for sale will be etched glass Christmas ornaments imprinted with “Thurmont Established in 1751.” Anyone interested in these special collectibles can call Joann Miller at 301-271-6965.


Colorfest Planning

The Town of Thurmont is preparing for Colorfest, scheduled this year for October 11 and 12. The security contract was awarded to Tim May Investigations. Two other bids will need to be awarded for the port-a-potties and for trash pick-up. The town pays for these services via the Colorfest permits. This is the largest-drawing arts and crafts show in the State of Maryland. It has also grown into one of the largest yard sale events in the state as well. For any questions regarding permits, please call the town office.


Thurmont Planning for Town Lights

In planning ahead for future town lights along the main streets of Thurmont, town officials have decided to install conduits for wiring along sidewalk areas. The light installations will be done by the town’s own electric company, as they have professional electricians, pole trucks, and so forth to do the job.


View the Town of Thurmont’s website at or call the town office at 301-271-7313 for more information.

October 31, 1937 – June 30, 2014

Jean’s husband, Rodman, their children, Patty, Cheryl, Robert, and Andrea, their grandchildren, and great-grandchildren would like to offer this tribute to their wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.

Jean MyersJean Myers is pictured with her Grand Champion Coconut Cake during the Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show.

We always remember mom talking about attending Sunday school at Mt. Tabor Lutheran Church in Rocky Ridge. She was active in the church’s youth programs. She talked about when she and her sister, Peggy, sang “Whispering Hope” in church as a duet. Their mom forced them to sing it, but it turned into a great memory.

She learned the importance of voting in elections from her father and was a dutiful constituent.

She served as safety patrol officer in school and worked at the Thurmont Cooperative and Claire Frock Company soon after she and Rodman were married. She told stories about how Rodman would come home for lunch when he worked for his father on the farm. He would watch their kids while Jean ran to the store or completed other errands.

She worked side by side with dad on the farm, milking cows, doing field work, and driving the truck through the fields to gather up bales of hay or straw. She always liked driving Dennis Mathias around in the truck from farm to farm while he was combining.

She was proud that she and Rodman were able to purchase several neighboring farms in the area. She loved to watch the crops grow and be harvested.

While we were milking cows, one of mom’s duties was to walk back to the pasture to bring the cows in to be milked. There was one stubborn cow who would not come in from the pasture. Mom often told stories about how she would have to climb a hearty hill she named “heart attack mountain,” just to bring the one cow in to be milked.

Mom would usually get her hair done on Thursday mornings and then would run all of her errands, like going to the bank, grocery store, post office, etc. She and Rodman enjoyed eating at Mountain Gate Restaurant, where she enjoyed the soup and salad bar. She had a sweet tooth and enjoyed eating ice cream and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

She would listen to music: the Bob Miller Radio Show and the Blaine Young Show. She liked to watch airplanes and liked to attend the Thurmont community concerts on Sunday nights in Memorial Park.

Her children remember going to Williamsburg, Virginia, for their first vacation where their mom enjoyed looking at antiques. They also ventured to Florida to visit Disney World, Sea World, and the Kennedy Space Center in 1975. The kids remember eating at a different Red Lobster Restaurant every night for dinner.

Over the years, Jean and Rodman enjoyed attending National Grange Conventions and milk conventions where she would go on the women’s tours. She visited the National Baseball Hall of Fame, as well as Nashville, Tennessee, with Sonny and Marie McNair. She visited the Biltmore Estates and Niagara Falls. She also enjoyed the Calgary Stampede and the chuck wagon races. Jean and Rodman also had the opportunity to travel to Europe to visit their daughter, Andrea, when she lived overseas. Jean and Rodman recently visited Las Vegas in February with Patty and Dave. Jean also enjoyed occasional gambling in Charles Town, West Virginia, and loved attending the 4-H and fire company 20-20 dinners, as well as the Thurmont High School Class reunions every year, where she assisted with organizing her class reunion.

Mom was a good cook and enjoyed baking. She was well known for her delicious coconut cake, which won her Grand Champion at the Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show two years in a row. She also enjoyed making brownies for the kids to eat at the fair and making peanut butter pies for the Rocky Ridge carnival, where she liked helping in the kitchen. Mom always made great tasting strawberry preserves, cobblers, pickled beets, angel food cake, and baked beans. The family’s friend, Dave Harman, nick-named her “Jean, Jean, the lean mean baking machine.”

She helped with the Baked Products Department judging and the Grange dinner at the Community Show, helped to sell sourdough products at Payne’s Hill, and helped at the Grange Hall during the Catoctin Colorfest. She was looking forward to this year’s community show Friday night program, when the 200th anniversary of the “Star-Spangled Banner” will be honored, with Tommy Grunwell as the speaker.

She enjoyed serving on the St. John’s Lutheran Church Christian Preschool Board of Directors, where she attended board meetings, helped with planning the preschool graduations.

She liked to read newspapers and magazines and would get up early in the morning to get the newspaper and read it. She also enjoyed watching Regis and Kathy Lee, Jeopardy, and Wheel of Fortune, and she liked to feed the birds and the cats.

Mom enjoyed attending the Guardian Hose Company Parade, playing bingo at carnivals and church festivals, and going to the Frederick fair to watch her grandkids show their animals. She especially enjoyed watching the 4-H dog show on Monday morning during the fair. She helped to sell cookbooks in the Farm & Garden Building during the fair, and served on the cookbook committee for the grange for several cookbooks that were published. Her children remember typing a lot of recipes to be printed in the books.

Jean also liked to give Rodman lots of advice, whether he needed it or not. The kids remember Sunday night drives to look at the crops, as dad would say, and then would end up at the Market Basket in Thurmont for ice cream. They usually parked right beside the McNair family.

Mom got along well with everyone who worked on the farm: her son-in-laws, daughter-in-law, and her grandson-in-law, and enjoyed attending her grandchildren’s sporting events on occasion. She always had ice cream sandwiches, popsicles, and snacks available while hay and straw wagons were unloaded. She enjoyed watching her grandchildren when they were little, bringing her bag of toys and Play-Doh. Stephanie remembers mom coming to pick her up from school when she was sick; she had the car lined in trash bags and a bucket, in case it was needed on the ride home. She always had a bell for a sick kid to ring if they needed anything, but she said that if you were too sick to go to school, then you were not allowed to watch TV either. She would give Stephanie a quarter if she would take a nap. This past Mother’s Day, she laughed so much watching her great grandchildren, Madison and Owen, riding around in their little car and being pulled through the yard really fast in their red wagon.

In closing, we would like to offer words of advice that were printed in a Maryland State Grange cookbook by Mae Moser, who was a member of the Thurmont Grange.

Life’s Recipe

1 cup of good thoughts

1 cup of kind deeds

1 cup of consideration of others

1 cup of sacrifice for others

3 cups of forgiveness

2 cups of well beaten faults

Mix these thoroughly and

add tears of joy and sorrow

and sympathy for others. Fold

in 4 cups of prayer and faith

to lighten the ingredients and raise

the texture to great the height of

Christian living. After pouring all of

this into your daily life, bake well

with the heat of human kindness.

Serve with a smile.

Camp David

by Ann Marie Bezayiff

After spending the day in Thurmont during the Colorfest Celebration, I was driving home along 550 and noticed a “Do Not Enter, Local Traffic Only” sign, where the Foxville-Deerfield Road meets Rte. 550. Later, I heard a rumor that Vice President Biden was at Camp David. Therefore, Foxville-Deerfield Road was off limits.

For us novices to the area, Camp David is a mysterious and curious place, so I did a little research on,, and Located 62-64 miles from Washington D.C., it is situated on 200 acres in the Catoctin Mountains, near Thurmont. The Camp David Accords and the 38th G8 Summit brought world leaders together in this place. Strange to think that some of the most powerful people in the world gather together to talk, negotiate, or relax in our backyard. In reality, they’ve been part of the neighborhood since the middle 1800s.

Located 1,800 feet above sea level, the area became a respite from the humid summers of Washington D.C. Dignitaries, ambassadors, and federal personnel spent summers in near-by Cascade and enjoyed visiting Pen Mar and the surrounding area. President Herbert Hoover first visited what is now known as Camp David when his secretary, Larry Ritchie, bought acreage in the Catoctin Mountains near Thurmont.

In 1935, the Works Projects Administration (WPA) began building the Catoctin Recreational Demonstration Area Project near Thurmont, the same area that Hoover had visited. It was built as a demonstration site, an example of how to create parks from over-worked farmland. Completed in 1938, it was named Hi-Catoctin and became a summer camp for federal agents and their families. The property housed several small cabins, a dining hall and a swimming pool.

In 1942, Franklin D. Roosevelt, during a three-day visit, decided to convert the camp into a presidential retreat. He named it Shangri-La for the fictional Himalayan paradise in James Hilton’s novel Lost Horizon. He sent instructions for remodeling the lodges and asked for the construction of a main lodge, which resembled the Roosevelt home in Warm Springs, Georgia. Once constructed, the lodge was named “The Bear’s Den.”

In 1953, President Dwight D. Eisenhower renamed Shangri-La Camp David in honor of his father and grandson. Today, it is officially known as Naval Support Facility Thurmont, and considered a military instillation. It is staffed by the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps.

As in the past, Presidents and their staffs are still a part of the scenery. Local residents share family stories of a waving Churchill, as his car made its way to Camp David. There are numerous stories of lunches and teas at the Cozy Inn in downtown Thurmont, where presidents and their first ladies often visited. Dignitaries from around the world, White House staff members, news commentators, and officials have been common visitors to the Thurmont area. Eisenhower’s grandson, David, and his wife, Tricia Nixon, spent their honeymoon at Camp David. Gerald Ford rode his snowmobile in the area. President Carter could be found fishing in the local streams. George W. Bush’s daughter was married at Camp David in 1992. Clinton played golf at the nearby Maple Run Golf Club. Each president has his own story to tell of his experiences at Camp David.

Through the ‘50s and ‘80s, the local young girls often dated the guards and military personnel stationed at Camp David. At that time, visitors and residents could drive to the entrance and even visit the camp with an escort. From those in the know, I’ve heard the best view for July 4th Fireworks is near High Rock on the Camp David grounds. Helicopters carry the dignitaries today. You can see and hear them overhead, and you probably think, “That must be the president going to Camp David.”

Now, when I stop where the Foxville-Deerfield meets Rte. 550, I look past the railroad tracks and toward the mountains, looking for signs of visitors from Washington. Perhaps I’ll have my own Camp David Story to share someday.

image001The Catoctin Area Civitan Club is selling White House Christmas ornaments (shown right)to raise funds for local developmentally disabled children and adults. The White House Historical Association began issuing an annual collectible ornament in 1981. The 2013 ornaments are available early this year. The Civitan Club is selling them for $22.00. The ornaments can be purchased at the Thurmont Eye Care Center, PNC Bank, or from any Civitan member. Ornaments will also be available in front of the PNC Bank during the Colorfest activities.

For details, visit their Facebook page at or our website at

By Chelsea Gorka

Every year in October, the Catoctin region springs to life with the bustle of people visiting from near and far. This year was the 49th year of the Annual Catoctin Colorfest in downtown Thurmont. With a turnout of thousands and thousands of people, Colorfest is an example of how what initially started as a small nature walk in 1963 can evolve into a nationally recognized juried arts and craft show almost fifty years later.

Officially starting at 9:00 a.m. on October 9, 2012, people were trying to get a look at all the crafts as early as 7:30 a.m. that morning. Vendors from Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, as well as several other states came into town to offer their merchandise. With unique treasures at every tent, it is a thrill to try to find the most unique wares and best deals each year. Upon entering the Thurmont Town Park, the smell of the “oh-so-good” festival food wafted into our airways. Fried snickers, apple dumplings, French fries, and crab cakes tempted even the most stoic of tastes. Walking past the food vendors into the actual park presented new temptations as a worldly array of crafts beckoned. From American Doll clothing and painted art to handmade wooden carvings and toys, there was something for every visitor to enjoy. 

Vendors selling Christmas décor seemed to be a favorite among the crowd this year. One couldn’t help but notice the amazing dance performances in the middle of the park, as large crowds gathered around the makeshift stage. Locals walking through the immense crowd stumbled upon friends and neighbors among swarms of visiting strangers.

Trying to make your way through the crowd on Saturday was a tad tricky. With dogs, strollers, and portable shopping carts attached to what seemed like every moving body, the streets filled up very quickly. Thankfully, we were blessed with a beautiful weekend, with the sun shining and the crisp air keeping all the visitors motivated to stay warm by moving forward.

During Colorfest, Deer Field United Methodist Church had a really awesome idea this year: when you paid their fee for parking, they gave you a coupon for $2.00 off at their food stand.

Of the two days, Sunday seemed to be the day to be out and about. The crowds had died down a bit, and the experience had a more relaxed feeling to it, allowing you to stop and look at each vendor without having to dodge hips and elbows at each counter.

Many people, even some local citizens, may not have realized that Colorfest, Inc. was not the only festival taking place in our area during the weekend of October 13 and 14, 2012. New this year was the Fall Fest at the Thurmont Carnival Grounds, hosted by the Thurmont Guardian Hose Company. Amish-made furniture, along with jewelry stands, set up in convenient rows, occupied parents and adults. An enormous slide and a merry-go-round called out to the younger patrons. Friendly faces—both human and K-9—were quite content and observant, taking in all the tables and knick-knacks.  Sweet kettle corn scented the air and the essence of the fall season was in full effect.

Down the road in Rocky Ridge, a smaller and more relaxed atmosphere entertained those at Ridge Fest.  Quaint set-ups with various odds and ends lined the tables under the pavilion in Mt. Tabor Park. Children lined up to slide down the infamous wooden slide, where they whirled down over and over again, grinning from ear to ear.  Apple butter is a staple of this small-town festival.

Finally, at Sabillasville Elementary School, just up Route 550 from Thurmont, Mountain Fest and their annual Car Show was a popular stop for fun. What started as a quiet country get-together has grown into a large gathering of several hundred people. Featuring a bouncy house for the kids, the atmosphere was very family-orientated. When you walked into Sabillasville Elementary School, the wafting smell of fresh-baked bread, pies, and muffins surrounded you, and you knew the church bake sale was under way. The Car Show featured different models and year makes, varying from Model Ts to 2012 Mustangs. Coming in all colors, shapes, makes, models, and years, there was a car there for everyone to admire. Horse rides and an Emu petting zoo made the trip interesting for all ages, along with a live band and much-loved ice cream!

If you missed any of these exciting and bustling festivals this year, don’t worry! They come around every year. Mark your calendars for next October, and be sure to set aside a bit of extra spending money for shopping, for great food, and for just plain fun!

Emmitsburg, August 2012

Emmitsburg Pool News

Yes, at last, the Splash Pool installation has been promised for the summer of 2013. The Splash structure will have a mushroom type sprinkler, with six spray hoses. Kids will get to enjoy the new installation, which will be located where the old baby pool stood. Mayor Briggs has committed to having at least three Pool Parties in 2013.

Another discussion surrounding the Emmitsburg Pool is the consideration for allowing an advertising board for businesses. A board would be posted inside the pool area. Names and phone numbers of businesses could be available for pool patrons to view. Funds from the sale of the advertisements would help pay pool expenses.

Park & Ride Discussion

A possible future Park & Ride for carpoolers was discussed at the town hall. A good location in Emmitsburg would need to be found for cars to park close to Route 15. The request for a Park and Ride would have to be coordinated with the State of Maryland.

Pippenfest in Fairfield

The Annual Pippenfest will happen in our backyard in the town hall reports by Michele Cuseo town of Fairfield, Pennsylvania, on September 29 and 30. Yards sales throughout the town are allowed all day on Saturday, with Arts & Crafts booths set up on Sunday. Pippenfest celebrates the Pippen apple that once grew in the area and was very popular. To celebrate the history of the pippen apple, there will be apple cooking contests at the festival, music, food, entertainment, and an antique car show. To find out more about Pippenfest and information about participating, call the Fairfield Town Office at 717-642-5640.

For more information about the Town of Emmitsburg, log onto

Thurmont, August 2012

Town Water Rates to Increase

Thurmont suffered a $35,000 shortage in their water service budget. To balance the budget Commissioners voted to increase water fees. The fairest cost for all residents was agreed to be keeping the rate of $60 per residential property and then increasing costs by usage. There will be five-tiered levels of usage with each tier increasing by 50 cents per tier. The increase will be effective with the 3rd quarter bills.

Reporting Crime Tip Line

Thurmont residents can report local crimes by calling a tip line at 301-271-0905. Thurmont Police say that callers are allowed to remain anonymous if they choose.

Information on a crime has to be specific when reported. There is a possible cash reward of up to $1,000 associated with an outcome of an arrest and conviction of a criminal.


The annual Colorfest event will soon be here again. The dates this year are Saturday, October 13 and Sunday, October 14. Thurmont town citizens desiring to set up a yard sale or a crafts sale on Colorfest weekend need to contact the town office for a permit.

The Colorfest, Inc. organization helps financially support local organizations and programs, including the Food Bank, the Guardian Hose Co., Thurmont Ambulance, College Scholarship programs, the annual children’s Halloween Party, and many more. To find out more about the Colorfest, log on to

View the Town of Thurmont’s website at or call the town office at 301-271-7313 for more information.