6th Annual Graw Days Festival celebrates Havre de Grace’s racing history Oct. 12



The Graw Days Festival returns to Havre de Grace Oct. 12 with a day of entertainment, history, speaker series, antique cars, music, food, arts, crafts, shopping, theater, and dancing. Here are the details:

Celebrate Racing History at the 6th Annual Graw Days Festival, October 12, 2013

Havre de Grace, Maryland

Downtown Havre de Grace is once again transforming its streets and shops into a whimsical, yet family friendly, festival extravaganza. Jam-packed into a single day, this 12-hour marathon of entertainment, history, speaker series, antique cars, music, food, arts, crafts, shopping, theater, and dancing.

In celebration of the nostalgic decades between 1912 and 1950, the memorable “Graw Racetrack” is used as a backdrop for everything. Opened in 1912, the Graw Days Festival commemorates the 100 year anniversary of the track and the tremendous impact it had on the community. The festival brings that time back to life through a wide variety of offerings. We will be offering tours of the Graw and visiting all the museums in town on The Great American Trolley, which you can ride all day for $1.00.

The Main Stage, sitting at the top of Pennington Avenue,will begin with an opening ceremony at 10 am,  featuring entertainment throughout the day. Experience the Graw Days Speakeasy where local restaurants will be offering an assortment of menus. 

The Speakeasy bartenders will be serving to wrist-banded guests an array of artisan beers to specialty wines. Throughout the Speakeasy, costumed personalities will be interacting with customers and inviting them to have their palms read by the great palm reading swami from Punjab Provence in the North of India. 

Right outside the Speakeasy and all along Washington and St. John Streets, selected artists and crafts people will be stationed. Over 75 vendors have been vetted and will be offering handmade items along with unique gift items from local shop owners. Several restaurants will have outdoor café seating. Vintage and antique cars from the Graw Days period will be situated at the foot of Pennington Ave.

 On St. John Street, at the restored 1903 First National Bank building, the Graw Days Committee brings “History @ the Bank” where a large number of racing artifacts, prints, and historic items.  Hear about the history in Havre de Grace with the Graw Days Speaker Series. Videos and historians will be on hand with presentations.

At the other end of the Festival, will be the “Little  Roundup Stage,” which is really a transformed Congress Avenue which will have carnival games, pumpkin face painting, pumpkin bowling, pumpkin chucking, period games and crafts, plus the Little Rascals Stage where children (and teens) will be performing for children with performances every half hour.  Visitors will also find small fee pony rides and carriage rides.

Events off the Graw way are happening the Old Opera House.  Tidewater Players present Buddy Bentley Legendz: a Musical Revue, featuring characters of past. Shows repeat 1:15 and 4:15.  Historic St. John’s Church presents Born to Ride; a play depicting the history of Black Jockeys in Maryland.