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US: Dover, DE – Where Kids Can Shop For Craftsy Xmas Gifts

Join the The Biggs Museum of American Art to kick-off the holiday season with their 2nd annual Happy Holidays Dover celebration. This event, which takes place from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., will coincide with the Downtown Dover holiday celebration and it will end with the start of the Downtown Dover holiday parade.Happy Holidays Dover2017-11-13_10-42-52

This all day family fun event offers a Special “Kids Only” Holiday Shop, where children ages 4-12  can purchase gifts (ranging from $1-$10) for their friends and family and decorate their own gift bags/gift cards. Items include handmade ornaments, jewelry, key chains and  bookmarks.Happy Holidays Dover Xmas Card2017-11-13_10-42-52

Highlights will include:  crafts,  live artist/craftsmen demonstrations, an expanded gift shop of handmade holiday items, food trucks, performances from children’s choirs, and a  special display of miniature holiday themed dollhouses.

Happy Holidays Dover Scarfs2017-11-20_11-55-51Tentative Schedule of Events: TBD – 9:30 -10 AM
Christ Church Dover Children’s Choir – 10-10:30 AM
Smyrna High School Select Group Choir – 10:45-11:15 AM
Smyrna High School Jazz Band – 11:30-12 PM
En Pointe Studio, selections from “The Nutcracker” -12:15-12:45 PM
Smyrna Church of Christ and Christian School Choir – 1-1:30 PM
Campus Community School First State Club “Mummer’s Play”- 1:50-2:15
Campus Community School Choir – 2:30 PM – 3 PM
TBD – 3:15-3:45
TBD – 4-4:30 PM

Free Admission

Location: Biggs Museum of American Art, 406 Federal St., Dover, DE 19901
Date: Sat, Dec 2nd, 2017
Time: 9 – 5 pm
Tel: 302-674-2111
biggsmuseum.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants, & Attractions: visitwilmingtonde.com

US: Greenland, NH – More Than 500 Home Made Pies are Sold to Make Money for Charity

Doors open to the 27th Annual Greenland Craft Fair & Pie Sale on November 19th, where each year on the Sunday before Thanksgiving you can find a line of people waiting at the Greenland Central School.Apple Pie2017-10-03_11-12-08

Over 500 pies are sold (and eaten!) and  the Woman’s Club mans the cafe with home cooking. Expect to see more than 100 talented artisans and crafters including edibles, fiber artisans, jewelers, and many others will be selling their wares.

Crafts 2017-10-03_10-41-56The Annual Greenland Craft Fair & Pie Sale is one of the longest running Fairs in the Seacoast. Hosted by the Greenland Women’s Club, a member of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs, the Fair raises funds that are used for a variety of local, national and international charitable purposes supported by the GWC. Free Admission

Plan to stay for lunch, the cafe will be serving homemade soups, quiche and of course, pie!Pies 2017-10-03_11-05-45

Location: Greenland Central School, 70 Post Road, Greenland, NH 03840
Date: Sun, Nov 19, 2017
Time: 10am – 3pm
Tel: 603-498-0099
greenlandwomensclub.org/pie-festival-craft-fair
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: portsmouthnh.com

US: Savannah, GA – This Exhibit in Savannah is Going to the Dogs

William Wegman (American, b. 1943) is an internationally-renowned artist with a prolific career spanning five decades. He is well known for his photographs of his beloved Weimaraners, a collaboration that began with his dog, Man Ray, in Los Angeles in 1970.

The exhibition of William Wegman: Improved Photographs at Telfair Museums – Jepson Center for the Arts highlights his use of humor to find unexpected and surprising ideas within everyday objects and scenarios. So much fun to see the dogs all dressed up or in unusual poses all done with incredible artistry.Wegman 05816_Eye On

Included in the exhibition are drawings, paintings, altered photographs, 20 x 24 inch Polaroids and a selection of early videos from the 1970s to present day.  Across all these media, Wegman demonstrates a continual interest in working and reworking his imagery, thus “improving” it with his particular sense of logic and play.

On August 5th,  1 – 4pm,  is William Wegman Free Family Day at the gallery.  Say goodbye to the “dog days” of summer and kick off the start of the school year with a family day devoted to the art of William Wegman. Participate in gallery activities, make your own altered photos and postcards, and find out more about Savannah dogs available for adoption.

Photo Credit: William Wegman Eye-on, 1997 Color Polaroid 24 x 20 inches

Location: Jepson Center for the Arts, 207 West York St., Savannah, 31401
Date: Until Aug 13, 2017
Hours: Sun -Mon 12-5pm. Tues-Sat 10 – 5pm
Tel: 912-790-8800
telfair.org/wegman
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: visitsavannah.com

US: Dunn, NC – Visit the Home of the “Father of the Army Airborne”

General William C. Lee Airborne Museum – This house was the home of the “Father of the Army Airborne”, so the museum charts his personal life as well as the growth of Army 101st and 82nd Airborne divisions. Exhibits include photographs, videotape, World War II memorabilia, historical documents and paratrooper equipment and uniforms.LeeMuseum2

General Lee was a relentless lobbyist to make the airborne a formidable part of our military might.

At tank school in Versailles, France in the ‘30’s he observed German military airborne experiments. He saw the promise of this, and started with test platoons doing parachute jumps (practiced from parachute towers in Hightstown, NJ).

By August 1942, in 26 months, he shepherded the airborne from a test platoon of 50 men to 2 divisions of 8,300 men, and was in charge of the sky: parachutes, air landing battalions and eventually the glider units.

He suffered a major heart attack on the eve of D-Day, and missed his chance to lead it. You have probably heard of his famous saying “the 101st has no history, but it has a rendezvous with destiny”.

Location: General William C. Lee Airborne Museum, 209 West Divine St., Dunn 28334
Hours: Mon-Fri 8:30-4:30, Sat 11-4 (Closed Sundays and Holidays)
Tel: 910-892-1947
generalleeairbornemuseum.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: dunntourism.org

US: Annapolis, MD – Plunge In to the Boating Season at Annapolis Sailboat Show

Head to Annapolis City Dock at the end of April and catch the Annapolis Spring Sailboat Show.  Set in the historic seaport of Annapolis,  the sixth annual in-water sailboat show kicks off the boating season with displays: catamarans, mono hulls, racing boats, family cruisers, day sailors, and inflatables—a total of over 100 new and brokerage boatsAerial Annapolis Sailboat

The sailboat show is for experienced and novice sailors alike, showcasing every new model present in the market, on display in the water and on land, allowing you opportunity to talk to the industry experts about buying and owing a boat. Shop for the latest in marine equipment, electronics, clothing and boating accessories at more than one hundred on-land nautical exhibits.First-Sail-Workshop

Cruisers University features hands-on workshops providing lessons from professionals and firsthand experience. The event will also include in-water demos, and the 3rd Annual Annapolis Junior Keelboat Regatta, where on April 29th at noon regional high school sailing teams will compete for the traveling cup.SPRINGSAILSUNDAYLarge (2)

Take a break from touring boats to enjoy live music, continuous entertainment, free food and beer and wine tastings, prizes, plus magnificent water views.

This venue is a one of a kind opportunity for sailors to be with sailors. There are very few places where you will find so many sailors congregated; the Annapolis Spring Sailboat Show is one of them.

Location: City Dock, Annapolis, MD (GPS address: 1 Dock Street, Annapolis, MD 21401)
Date: April 28 – 30, 2017
Hours: Fri, Sat  10 – 6 pm, Sun 10 -5 pm
Tel: 410-268-8828
annapolisboatshows.com/annapolis-spring-sailboat-show
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: visitannapolis.org

US: Manassas, VA – A History Lesson Given in a Cemetery – Manassas City Cemetery Tour

What better place to learn a piece of Manassas history than with a Cemetery Tour. Learn about “Important Citizens who Influenced Prince William County History”. The Manassas City Cemetery tour is a biographical tour of our predecessors which allows you to discover their contributions to society.  Manassas City Cemetery Tour

The Ladies Memorial Association of Manassas (later to become the United Daughters of the Confederacy) created the Confederate Cemetery in 1867 on one acre of donated land. The land was given to hold the remains of Confederate soldiers “scattered over the Plains.”

Although the Bull Run Ladies Association reburied the remains of soldiers found on the battlefield in the Groveton Cemetery, there were many other remains recovered throughout Manassas. In 1911, the Association placed a bronze statue of a Confederate Soldier “At Rest” on the brownstone monument that had been dedicated in 1889. Legend has it that the soldier faces east to guard against attack from Washington.  Manassas City Cemetery Tour 2

Each year for the cemetery tour a different theme is used. Tragic deaths (murders or accidents), women, cemetery architecture are just a few from the past. This year focuses on County and Community leaders: Sheriffs, politicians, school administrators,… This tour is done with the greatest respect to the cemetery and its “inhabitants”.

To purchase tickets visit: manassasechoes.com, or call 703-368-1873

Location: Manassas Confederate Cemetery, 9317 Center St., Manassas, VA 20110
Date: Fri, March 17, 2017
Time: 8pm – 9:30 PM
Tel: 703-257-8265
manassasmuseum.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: manassascity.org

US: Lincoln, MA -See Bauhaus Home Furnishings In Bauhaus Home – National Historic Landmark

If you’re a fan of architecture and design you’ll want to check out The Gropius House. Walter Gropius, the founder of the highly influential Bauhaus School and one of the most prominent architects of the 20th century designed this striking home in 1938 after moving from Germany to Massachusetts to teach at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design.gropius-house

Modest in scale, the house was revolutionary in impact. It combined the traditional elements of New England architecture — wood, brick, and fieldstone, with innovative materials rarely used in domestic settings at that time: glass block, acoustical plaster, and chrome banisters, along with the latest technology in fixtures. gropius-house-furniture

At the Gropius House, Bauhaus ideals remain alive, and throughout Gropius’s life, he and his wife Ise continued to add newly designed furnishings that reflected their belief in the marriage of design and industry.  In keeping with Bauhaus philosophy, every aspect of the house and its surrounding landscape was planned for maximum efficiency and simplicity of design. gropius-house-study

Two years after Mrs. Gropius’s death in 1983, the Gropius House opened as a historic house museum. The house contains a significant collection of furniture designed by Marcel Breuer  and fabricated in the Bauhaus workshops. The house also contains works by Eero Saarinen, Joan Miró, and Herbert Bayer that were given as gifts to Walter Gropius. With all the family possessions still in place, the house has an cohesiveness rarely found in house museums.

All images are “Courtesy of Historic New England.”

Location: Gropius House. 68 Baker Bridge Road, Lincoln, Mass. 01773
Dates: Sat and Sun, until May 31
Hours: 11 – 4pm, Tours on the hour
Tel: 781-259-8098
historicnewengland.org/historic-properties/homes/Gropius%20House
For Regional Information, Restaurants & Attractions: merrimackvalley.org

US: Newburyport, MA – Xmas Tree Bonfire Party with Music, S’mores & Flashlight Treasure Hunt

This is no ordinary Bonfire, it’s a 3-story community bonfire where Greater Newburyport’s residents burn their well-loved Christmas trees, and boy can those babies burn and it gets hot, real hot! newburyport-bonfire

In honor of the original purchase of Newbury, MA in 1701, It’s the 6th Annual Christmas Tree Burn Fundraiser/ Old Newbury Bonfire  to benefit the Newbury Volunteer Fire Department. Why not support this community and enjoy the local entertainment with music, games, food and fun at an event that is becoming a Greater Newburyport Winter tradition.

In addition to the bonfire, there will be tours of the 17th century stone and brick manor house at Spencer-Peirce-Little Farm,  and you can participate in a  flashlight treasure hunt and other children’s activities. Enjoy great food and drinks from local businesses, roast marshmallows or make S’mores.  At 5 PM there’s an  auction to be one of the two official bonfire lighters. Other prizes include a ride to school on a fire truck, cords of wood, local art and other surprise. Admission FREE, food and drinks available for purchase. Parking: $5 at Spencer Peirce Little Farm.

Location: Spencer Pierce Little Farm – 5 Little’s Lane, Newbury, MA 01951
Date: Sat, Jan 14, 2017
Time: 3 pm  – 9 pm w/ Bonfire Auction at 5 pm, lighting to follow – See more at:
newburyport.com/old-newbury-bonfire/
Tel: 978-462-2282,  978-462-2634
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: newburyportchamber.org
newburyport.com

US: Join Fabien Cousteau During His 31-day Underwater Mission

Grandson of Jacques Cousteau, Fabien Cousteau was entranced by his grandpa’s films and underwater life. Right now he’s in the Florida Keys with a 5-person crew making a documentary and doing science experiments about the ocean.cousteau

They will live there for 31 days in the 37-sq. ft Aquarius Reef Base, a school bus size laboratory which is 18 metres below the ocean’s surface a few kilometers off of Key Largo, Florida. Cousteau raised the cash to save the lab which was threatened to close due to US federal budget cuts.

Remaining in an underwater lab allows them to scuba dive for extended periods of time without having to return to the surface to decompress. This Mission 31 will add to the legacy of Jacques Cousteaus’s 1963  Conshelf II 30-day underwater experiment in the Red Sea. He filmed the Oscar winning documentary “World Without Sun” there.

This mission can be broadcast live online. The aquanauts will communicate with public through social media and video chats. It ends on July 2nd. “For the first time, I’m able to invite the world on a Cousteau expedition in real time”, said Couseau.

http://aquarius.fiu.edu
http://aquariusreefbase.org
www.ustream.tv/aquariusreefbase
www.facebook.com/AquariusReefBase

 

South Africa: Visiting Robben Island, UNESCO World Heritage Site

By Adele Shapiro – March 2012.

As a child I used to visit Robben Island with my grandmother. Her son, my uncle, was a warder in the prison services there. The name “Robben”, despite sounding very English – is in fact the Dutch for “Seal” – and the name derives from the extensive seal colony that was found on the Island by the first Dutch settlers.

We would go to the Cape Town docks and from there, take a boat ride to the island, where we would spend the day with family. I was vaguely aware that there were bad people on the island, and that it was a prison…. but little did I know then of the role it was to play in South Africa’s later history. Years passed and now as an adrobben1ult, I found myself revisiting the place where “the bad people” were kept, only now I realized that some were not so bad after all.

I bought a ticket for the tour some days before the trip, (advisable, as they fill up quickly) and took time out to examine the display at the Nelson Mandela Gateway at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.

There were many photographs of the political dissidents, the calls for boycotts, the anti-apartheid marches and there was also a prison cell that had been reconstructed for the purposes of the exhibit. I strongly recommend a visit to this exhibit before going to the island as it helps to contextualize the experience.

The trip began, as in times of old, with a boat ride from Cape Town docks, but this time instead of my uncle meeting us, we had a pleasant tour guide who told us jokes on our bus trip, whilst pointing out various sights on the island. Our bus was parked under a sign that said: “Welcome. We serve with pride.” I wondered if that sign had been there when Robben Island had been a prison as it was so sharply incongruous to the environment. I hoped not.

robben2Robben Island has had a long history. First as a lighthouse to warn ships of the VOC, the Dutch East India Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie), of the rocks that surround the island. But since the end of the 17th century, Robben Island has been used for the isolation of (mainly) political prisoners. The island was also used at various times as an animal quarantine station, a home for slaves, a leper colony, a hospital for the mentally ill and as a prison for French Vichy prisoners of war.

First we saw the Leper Graveyard and then house where Robert Sobukwe (Founder of the Pan Africanist Congress) had been kept separate from the other political dissidents.

It seems that Robert Sobukwe had special status in the prison. He was kept in solitary confinement at all times, but allowed certain privileges including access to books, being permitted to study, being permitted to wear civilian clothes, and being permitted bread. His children were allowed to visit him and they had their own bedroom in his “house”. Robert Sobukwe was convicted of incitement for demonstrating against and defying the Pass Laws, and in particular, for his connection to the PAC demonstration (although he was not present) which became known as the Sharpeville Massacre.

The notorious Pass Laws required black people to carry a pass book at all times when outside their compounds or designated areas, and were designed to limit severely the movements of the non-white population. This legislation was one of the dominant features of the country’s apartheid system.

Sobukwe was sentenced to three years in prison. After serving his sentence, he was moved to Robben Island for internment, as a new law called the General Law Amendment Act had been passed, which permitted his imprisonment to be renewed annually at the discretion of the Minister of Justice. This procedure became known as the “Sobukwe clause” and Robert Sobukwe was the only person whose imprisonment was extended under this clause. Imagine how special one has to be in order for parliament to pass a law just for you!

We also learned from our tour guide that the American politician and Pastor, Andrew Young, had fostered Sobukwe’s children in the USA, while Sobukwe had been in prison.

Our tour continued to the lime quarry where the political prisoners had worked. At the entrance to the quarry we saw a small cairn, and learned its history. In February 1995, (the landmark change of government was in 1994), about one thousand former political prisoners gathered again on Robben Island, but this time as free men, and to mark the occasion, each one placed a small stone from the quarry in a pile, making a small memorial to their years of hardship and struggle.

As we continued on our bus ride, we were shown a church, a hospital, a school and a mosque, and realized that far beyond our expectations, the island had supported a whole community. We duly arrived at the prison and tumbled out of the bus for our tour of “the real thing”. We were excited and filled with high spirits and I wondered for a moment where my heart would have been had I not been a tourist.

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Inside we found grey walls. It was cool at midday; it was clear that at midnight it would be very cold. The communal cells were large and each had a bathroom attached.

Here we met our prison tour guide, Derrick Basson, a former political prisoner who served time on Robben Island for sabotage.

Derrick was very patient, humble and remarkably, not bitter. He answered all the insensitive questions calmly and without anger. In addition he explained the grading of the prisoners by race and also the diets that varied due to the racial classification of each prisoner. One of the curious facts he told us was that black prisoners were not given bread. As they were Africans their “natural” food was considered to be maize meal. The mixed race prisoners were allowed bread as they were considered to be more western or European and less African. The black Africans were also not allowed jam or syrup. I suppose you do not need jam if you have no bread.

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Then I remembered that Robert Sobukwe, in spite of being black, was allowed to have bread, and it struck me that this must have been because he had been a university professor, and since this is a very “European” and non-tribal job, maybe he was considered eligible to receive bread.

Derrick further explained how prisoners slept on mats on the floor and how 5 blankets had not been enough to keep them warm at night. I suddenly remembered an interview with a former Alcatraz inmate who spoke of the extreme cold and of how prisoners had learned to sleep with only their elbows and knees touching the floor, hands locked behind the head. I became very grateful for my duvet.

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We were told that in the beginning the political prisoners had been kept with the ordinary criminals, but later on, they were, thankfully, given their own “wing” and kept together. They came to call this place “The University” as they learned many things from each other and many of them also obtained degrees while in prison.

Derrick then took us to a yard where the prisoners had chopped rocks and turned them into stones, day after day in the sun. They were told that these rocks were used for roads built on the island, but no one seemed to know if this was true or not.

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We were then taken to Nelson Mandela’s cell. Mandela was a militant anti-apartheid activist, as well as the co-founder and leader of the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC), Umkhonto we Sizwe or “Spear of the Nation”. He was arrested in 1962 and convicted of sabotage, (amongst other charges), after he admitted to manufacturing explosives and acts of public violence, and was sentenced to life imprisonment. Mandela served 27 years in prison, 18 of these on Robben Island. After his release, he served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999.

My very first impression was of how small the cell was. No, not small, tiny. And then I thought that at least he could stand up and lie down in it, but not much more than that. At least it was larger than the dreadful box that I had heard was used in China. But there was no toilet. Just a metal bucket with a lid. At least a lid. And no tap, so no water. And if you are thirsty during the night, what should you do? And of course there was no electrical socket and no radio nor TV. And all I could think of was 27 years. TWENTY SEVEN YEARS! There was no door handle on the inside. The door was only operational from the outside, not unlike a cage. I remembered that Nelson Mandela had once remarked that the hardest and most traumatic experience he endured whilst on Robben Island for all those years was that he never ever saw, or even heard, a child. Can you imagine that? Now he insists on being photographed with children, whenever possible.

robben10And then it was all over. We walked out to the yard, Derrick took us to the exit, and we said our goodbyes.I felt an odd mixture of elation and depression. Very happy that I had been to a UNESCO World Heritage Site of such importance, happier still that it was no longer a prison, and most happy that I was leaving. Yet also depressed and ashamed because of the suffering this place represented.

Duly subdued, we gratefully returned to our boat to ponder our feelings of inspiration and shock, enjoy the beautiful sunset cruise back to Cape Town, and watch a school of dolphins at play in the sea.

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Remember when planning a visit to Robben Island, that the tours don’t always run on time. There was no snack bar on the boat. Our boat was 1 hour late in leaving Cape Town harbour and then we were rushed through our tour, which was a pity as there was too little time for questions.

A suggestion would be to make no appointments after the visit as the timing can vary, and also, take a snack pack. A sun hat and sun block are also good ideas.

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Ferries depart (supposedly) at 9am, 11am, 1pm and 3pm, weather permitting, from Nelson Mandela Gateway, at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. Tickets costs are R230 for adults and R120 for children (U/18). Telephone: +27 (0)21 413 4200
Fax: +27 (0)21 419 1057