Celebrating one the Bay’s Most Beautiful Rivers
Long ago, all of the Shore – both shores – was like this: quiet rivers flowing to the Chesapeake unmarred by development; wildlife scurrying, swimming, rooting, burrowing; eagles and ospreys soaring; the breeze weaving through the salt marshes; the mosquitoes merrily buzzing in the afternoon humidity (hey, even Eden had a snake).
By some happy accident, the Nanticoke River maintains much of that pristine elegance. From its headwaters in southern Delaware to its mouth on the Chesapeake, it is one of the healthiest and least developed tributaries of the Chesapeake. It has among other things, the highest concentration of bald eagles in the Northeast US, and paddlers and birders are enraptured by its peacefulness, vistas, and abundance of wildlife.
There are several groups dedicated to protecting the Nanticoke. This Saturday, June 25, one of them – the Nanticoke Historical Preservation Alliance – hosts the Nanticoke River Jamboree, a day-long celebration of the “history, culture, and natural wonders of the Nanticoke River.” (Actually, the event kicks off with an overnight paddling trip, but the main events are on Saturday.)
The schedule calls for paddling trips, bike tours, and walks along and near the river. Groups and agencies setting up displays and holding activities include the Phillips Environmental Center’s mobile aquarium, Horn Point’s ‘Touch Tank,’ the Dorchester Garden Club, National Park Service, Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, the Underground Rail Road Museum, and the Coast Guard. There will be a native plant sale; David Harp, whose photos capture the Bay in all its dimensions, and Tom Horton, whose chronicles of the region are required reading will both be on hand, as will Daniel Firehawk Abbott, who will be interpreting Native American life in the region.
Admission is $2 per person, $5 per family. The schedule of events runs from 10-5 at Handsell House on Indiantown Road in Vienna. For more information, including the overnight paddle, go to www.nanticokeriverjamboree.com.