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Sweet! Strawberry Festival expands to two days this year –

by Terri Hogan

Senior Staff Writer

The Sandy Spring Museum’s 37th annual Strawberry Festival will offer twice the fun this year as the event expands to two full days.

The popular event will take place on June 2 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on June 3 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the museum, 17910 Bentley Road.

Last year’s event drew an estimated 7,000 visitors, prompting the expansion.

“The festival has gotten bigger every year,” said Allison Weiss, executive director of Sandy Spring Museum. “Last year we realized the only way we could accommodate more people was to make it a two-day event. Seems like the community is very excited about this.”

The first Strawberry Festival was held in June 1982 at the old Montgomery General Hospital grounds as a fundraiser for the museum. It was completely staffed by volunteers and featured many of the same activities as today, including craftspeople, entertainment, games, a plant sale, and food and drinks for sale.

Weiss credits volunteers for their efforts in making the Strawberry Festival a success.

“Every year I am struck by the generosity of the volunteers who help pull this event together,” she said. “I think it shows how much people care about Sandy Spring/Olney. The Strawberry Festival is a community-builder. It brings thousands of people together and gives them a sense of place.”

Fresh strawberries will again be the main attraction, and according to Susan Keeley, the museum’s director of marketing, there will be “lots more” of them.

A brownie strawberry shortcake was introduced last year and sold out immediately.

Keeley said organizers have ramped up the number of brownies, as well as other ingredients used for the strawberry delicacies. Strawberries will also be available for purchase by the quart.

A variety of food will be available for purchase from food trucks. The lineup will be different each day.

The popular beer and wine garden will also return, featuring beverages from the Olney Winery, the Brookeville Beer Farm (Saturday) and Waredaca Brewing Company (Sunday).

The museum’s Garden Club will sell flowers and vegetable plants and kokedamas, and offer a make-your-own fairy garden activity.

Over 50 craft vendors will participate in this year’s festival, offering items including ceramics, woodworking, jewelry, gourmet vinegars and handmade clothing.

This year, the Mainstage entertainment lineup is more eclectic, featuring a Turkish Folk Group, a Latin group classic rock, bluegrass and the winners of MoCo’s Got Talent competition, along with community favorites The Olney Big Band and Olney Concert Band.

The Community Stage will showcase young vocalists, dancers, musicians, martial artists and even some magic.

Camp Sonshine will sponsor the children’s activities, including a climbing wall, obstacle course and moonbounces. There will also be pony rides, a petting zoo, make-a-craft tables and a hands-on insect table.

Admission is $3 each or $10 for a family of up to six people.

Wristbands may be purchased for unlimited children’s activities and are good for both days of the festival. The cost is $15 in advance or $20 at the door.


    Volunteers are still needed. Middle and high school students can earn service hours.

    For more information, to view the full entertainment lineup, or to purchase admission tickets, wristbands or raffle

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