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SYKESVILLE — Employees of the Gate House Museum of History in Sykesville sure know how to say "hello."

Ripe, red strawberries coupled with ice cream and shortcake are just the right salutation to help bring the community together while raising funds for the museum at the annual Strawberry Festival.

"It's such a community-oriented event and something that churches have always done," said Kari Greenwalt, Gate House director. "You get to mingle with your neighbors, your fellow strawberry lovers.

"It brings awareness about the museum to a section of the community."

The festival starts at 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 13, and is combined with the South Carroll Fine Arts League's Art in the Park event.

The Fine Arts League is a nonprofit based in Sykesville that welcomes all artists and those who appreciate fine art.

That event features 22 artists, as well as a performance by acoustic guitarist Sloe Jim and as well as jazz musicians.

Art in the Park is more of a show than a sale. True, people can purchase artwork at the event, said Gale Ratley, the league's chairwoman, but she welcomes folks to come out and support art by seeing what kind of work artists have completed in the community.

The chalk walk will return this year, led by pastel artist Vivian Davis.

Participants get to use sidewalk chalk, and even some 3D chalk, and draw on a 2-foot-by-2-foot square section on the pavement. Davis said she hopes adults will get in the act as much as children.

To participate, chalk artists should go to the tent at 10 a.m. and fill out a form -- then have at it.

If you go

Sykesville's Strawberry Festival and South Carroll Fine Arts League Art in the Park

10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, June 13, at Millard Cooper Park, Cooper Drive, Sykesville.

Sloe Jim performance from noon to 2 p.m. Jazz performance from 2 to 4 p.m.


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