Heritage Days to celebrate 20 years of bringing history to life

Heritage Days, a project of the non-profit historical organization Heritage Montgomery, will celebrate its 20th anniversary this weekend. Held annually on the last weekend of June, the event is a collaborative effort of organizations throughout the County to provide interactive exhibits showcasing life in different eras.

“Heritage Days is always one of our favorite events,” said Heritage Montgomery executive director Sarah L. Rogers. “It’s grown massively over the years. The first year we only had four participating organizations; this year we have 40.”

As part of the 20th anniversary celebration, Heritage Montgomery is publishing “African American Heritage Cookbook: Heritage Foodways in Montgomery County, Maryland.”  The cookbook is a collection of recipes consumed in African-American communities in Maryland throughout the 1700s and 1800s. Dishes from the cookbook will be served at participating sites.

Organizations participating for the first time this year include the Izaak Walton League, which will host activities celebrating local conservation efforts at its Poolesville property, and the Audubon Naturalist Scoiety, which will provide guided tours of its facility on Jones Mill Road. Other events include a walking tour of African-American heritage sites, starting at the historic Red Brick Courthouse on Saturday, sponsored by Peerless Rockville, and tours on Sunday of the historic Riley Farm in Bethesda where the Reverend Josiah Henson, whose life inspired the novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin,” was a slave for many years.

“We expect over 20,000 people to attend,” Rogers said.  “Everybody always has a great time and comes away knowing much more about the history and culture of Montgomery County.”


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