Hands-on Activities Make Heritage Fun!

May 06 2018

Hands-on Activities Make Heritage Fun!

Join Four Rivers Heritage Area in our new initiative to highlight Hands-On Heritage activities for adults and families. Have fun and learn by exploring a variety of activities  that allow you to participate as you learn.  Check out the public hands-on events and activities offered by heritage attractions in April-May.

ARCHAEOLOGY IS VERY HANDS-ON! Anne Arundel County has more recorded archaeological sites than any other jurisdiction in the State! Over 1,600 sites represent our archaeological heritage, from 13,000 year old Native American camp sites, to colonial plantations, to the ruins of 20th century beach resorts.

— Anne Arundel County Archaeology Laboratory, 839 Londontown Road, Edgewater, MD, 410-222-1318

The County Archaeology Laboratory is expanding its hours! ♦ Students and volunteers are invited to help professional archaeologists wash and label artifacts at the County laboratory located at Historic London Town in Edgewater.  We will now be open every Thursday evening.  Download the Spring Newsletter with all events listed here: Spring 2018 Schedule of Events Newsletter ZLS reduced

E-mail our public outreach coordinator Dr. Zachary Singer at

Plan ahead to get involved in a DIG: June 20th -23rd & June 27th-30th, Public Archaeology Field Sessions at the 18th century Ferguson Site (18AN1519) at Historic London Town — Anne Arundel County is excited to announce summer archaeological field sessions at the Ferguson Site on the shores of the South River. The County Cultural Resources Section, in cooperation with Historic London Town and Gardens and the Lost Towns Project, will be hosting a hands-on real world archaeological dig! Open to the Public!! Investigations will begin in June 2018 at the 18th century home site of Alexander Ferguson, a merchant, a tailor, and a prominent resident of the colonial seaport of London Town. Two sessions will be open to the public: June 20th -23rd and June 27th-30th, 2018. Reservations are required, and space is limited. Families welcome, but children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Email or call the County Archaeology Lab at 410-222-1318 for more information. Online registration will be posted soon!


Historic Annapolis’s Hogshead — Hands-On Experiences every Saturday and Sunday in downtown Annapolis!
Come Meet the people who lived and worked in the 18th century Annapolis
Hogshead is open every weekend until November!
Participate with hands-on activities as you learn what life was like for the “lower and middling sort” in early Maryland through an interactive experience with guides dressed in colonial attire and the opportunity to see and handle authentic and reproduction artifacts.
EVERY SATURDAY AND SUNDAY, 12-4 – until November
Hogshead, 43 Pinkney Street, Annapolis, MD, 410-990-4543,




Saturday and Sunday, May 12 – 13

Historic London Town and Gardens, 839 Londontown Rd., Edgewater
10:00 am – 4:30 pm​
“Shore Party” — Join living history sailors to try your hand at rope making and seamanship, learn how sailors lived day to day, and experience the art and science of navigation.  Free costume rentals are available to children. Included with general admission. Free to members.

​May 12 – at Shore Party Event, Special Archaeology Lab Program – Celebrate the County’s
maritime roots. Maritime artifacts recovered from across the County will
be highlighted. Oyster shell, fishhooks, net weights, and even the fish
bones themselves will come out of the storage boxes for the public to see
and touch!(County Lab) No registration required, but Historic London Town
Entrance Fee applies.


May 16

Muddy Creek Artists Guild — DoArt Painting Party on Wednesday, May 16th from 7-9pm. Try a new technique and let gravity paint your picture for you! Under the guidance of artist Ruth Bailey, you’ll learn this process and have fun doing it! With fluid acrylic paint pouring, different colors of paint are poured into a cup and then poured onto a canvas to make a large runny puddle of colors. Because of the different densities of pigments, the colors don’t mix together much but remain in layers of separate colors. Gently tipping the canvas will cause the paint to flow over the surface and down the edges, exposing different layers of color and creating a marbleized design. Cells of color may rise through other colors and make lacy designs on the surface. The colors you choose and the manner in which you manipulate the flow make your creation unique.
This process is fun, but can be a little messy. Clothes that you don’t mind getting paint on are a must. Join us for a great evening of art!
Wednesday, May 16, 2018, 7:00pm-9:00pm
Deale Elks Lodge
6022 Drum Point Road, Deale
$35 registration fee includes expert instruction, all art materials, desserts, and complimentary bar drink

Thursday, May 17

Four Rivers Heritage Area sponsors: A Hands-On Session with Documentary Quilt Maker Dr. Joan Gaither — includes a short PPT presentation, workshop and $15.00 cost for materials. Wiley H. Bates Legacy Center, 1101 Smithville Street, Annapolis, 5:00 – 7:00 pm – Register with Eventbrite:


Saturday, May 19

SERC – Open House

10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Celebrate Bay Optimism at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center’s annual Open House! Get ready for the Smithsonian’s outdoor festival of science. Enjoy hands-on activities in the water and on land with the Smithsonian scientists in your backyard. You’ll also discover what’s working in conservation in Chesapeake Bay and around the world, and how you can be a part of it. Location: 647 Contees Wharf Road Edgewater, MD 21037. Embrace your inner optimist at the Smithsonian’s outdoor festival of science on Saturday, May 19! Enjoy hands-on activities in the water and on the land, with Smithsonian scientists in your backyard. You’ll also discover what’s working in conservation in Chesapeake Bay and around the world, and how you can be a part of it.

Here’s a preview of what you and your family can do:

  • Enjoy a boat cruise down the Rhode River ($8/person; children 4 and under free. Online ticket sales start April 16!)
  • Take a hay ride through the forest
  • Join an archaeological dig at SERC’s 18th-century mansion ruins
  • Watch eco-goats at work
  • Learn about birds of prey
  • Join a group selfie drone photo
  • Look through microscopes at phytoplankton
  • Face painting and live music!

Let us know you’re coming! RSVP online, and you’ll automatically be entered into a raffle to win a Whole Foods gift bag valued at over $50. Visit Eventbrite to RSVP online (free) or purchase boat tickets. Boat ticket sales start Monday, April 16, at 9am, and end Friday, May 18, at 1pm.


Saturday, July 7 – Sunday, July 8

Historic London Town and Gardens, 839 Londontown Rd , Edgewater, MD 21037, 410-222-1919,

​10:00am – 4:30pm. Revolutionary London Town, Step back into the contentious days surrounding the Declaration of Independence. You can join the Continental Army or Continental Marines to learn musket drill, debate the merits of independence in William Brown’s tavern, and learn how colonists made a living at our Carpenters’ Shop and Tenement. ​Included with general admission with free costume rentals for children. Free for members

July 7: Special Lab Program for Revolutionary London Town event, Archaeology Lab. . Artifacts from around
the time of the Revolutionary War will come out of the storage boxes for the public to see and touch! No registration required, but Historic London Town Entrance Fee applies. (10am–3pm)


Saturday, August 11- Sunday, August, 12

Historic London Town and Gardens, 839 Londontown Rd., Edgewater, MD 21037, 410-222-1919,

​10 – 4:30 pm. Scottish Weekend, Live music, sword fighting and musketry demos, a scotch tasting, and more in our celebration of Scottish heritage and history. ​Included with general admission. Free for members. Scotch tasting for extra fee.