As the days have been getting longer and the temperatures rise there are many things to enjoy about springtime in Maryland. It’s the perfect opportunity to spend time in the outdoors and enjoy activities that go hand-in-hand with this season. Here are some of the best things about spring in Washington County.
April 26-24, 2022: National Park Week is celebrated each year in April by the National Park Service (NPS) and the National Park Foundation. It’s the perfect time to visit local NPS sites and take advantage of the fee-free day that kicks off the week-long celebration. Learn stories of history and culture, experience the outdoors and attend special programs like those offered for National Junior Ranger Day. Washington County is home to five National Parks offering everything from historic monuments and battlefields to waterways with camping, recreational trails and boat launches: Antietam National Battlefield, Appalachian National Scenic Trail, Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park and Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail. #ExploreYourPark in Washington County!
April 21-24, 2022: https://dnr.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/western/fortfrederick.aspx hosts an annual 18th Century Market Fair. This event offers a unique opportunity to step back in time at the only remaining original French and Indian War stone fort in the country. The authentic 18th century market fair includes hundreds of fair-goers of all ages dressed in colonial clothing. You’ll see living historians portraying artisans, soldiers, ladies and gentlemen, Native Americans, longhunters, traders, servants and more. Sutlers are at the fair selling 18th century wares such as pottery, tin and copper ware, clothing, material and patterns, books, fireplace and cooking hardware, muskets and accoutrements, paintings and prints, lanterns and other camp gear. A wide variety of special programs and entertainment are also scheduled. Visit the 18th Century Market Fair and increase your historical knowledge while learning about the role Fort Frederick played in the French and Indian War. There are some beautiful trails there, including a terminus to the Western Maryland Rail Trail.
May 15 & 16, 2022: The annual South Mountain Spring Festival is a fun way to see several agricultural and local makers near the Appalachian Trail. Taking place in the Pleasant Valley area, explore Caprikorn Farm to pet the goats and buy soaps and goat cheese; visit a world renowned pottery artisan, van Gilder Pottery, Willow Oaks Winery & Craft Cider, and Big Cork Vineyards – a beautiful vineyard with sweeping views of the area. Unique stops who are participating are M4 Studios where you can walk their Outdoor Pottery Trail, and celebrate our rural heritage with some local spirits at Pathfinder Distillery – where they turn “Sunshine into Moonshine!” It’s a great way to explore scenic Southern Washington County and shop local in support of regional agritourism and local artisans.
May 21, 2022: The annual National Pike Festival and James Shaull Wagon Train Festival celebrates the Historic National Road and begins in Clear Spring, and travels Route 40 (the National Pike) with a 3 day event ending in Boonsboro, Maryland. See horse drawn covered wagons as they make their way to their encampments. Great places to visit along the Pike Wilson’s Historic Village and the Wilson’s General Store – a walk back in time to an old fashioned candy store, with antiques, gifts, an old fashioned Post Office and Gift Shop. The final stop is in Boonsboro, where visitors love to see our Trolley Museum and shop the stores on Main Street (including Turn the Page Bookstore and Gifts Inn Boonsboro – both owned by author Nora Roberts).
June 6, 2022: Celebrate National Trail Day at the 2nd annual Hancock Trail Day in Hancock, MD, officially designated as “Maryland’s Trail Town.” Located near the halfway point between the Tuscarora Trail’s southern and northern terminuses (where the TT rejoins the Appalachian Trail), Hancock is also along the C&O Canal towpath and the Western Maryland Rail Trail. To celebrate the town’s trail distinction, and the 60th Anniversary of the Trail, take self-guided hikes from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Hosted by the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club, which oversees the Tuscarora Trail sections, the primary hike route will be a family-friendly, 3.9-mile stretch (one-way) of the Tuscarora that overlaps the C&O Canal Towpath. Trail town businesses will be open to show off their local wares and great dining.
There are many other spring events, festivals and activities to enjoy in Washington County. Our website and the online version of our annual Visitors Guide offer endless ideas for recreation and ways to explore the outdoors. Be sure to check our online Calendar of Events or download our Visit Hagerstown App to stay on top of what’s happening in the area.
Cover photo: Annapolis Rock by John Canan
All photos courtesy of Visit Hagerstown