SAXIS — The town of Saxis will hold a celebration Saturday to mark the opening of a new museum created to preserve the history of the remote Chesapeake Bay community.
When the tiny Saxis Island Museum, housed in a single, 13-by-27 foot room, opens its doors it will mean the culmination of a dream long held by former Saxis mayor Charles Tull, who died in 2010 at age 62.
Tull served as mayor from 1996 until his death and was widely known as an advocate for his native town.
“He always wanted to have a little museum on Saxis,” said historian M. K. Miles, himself a Saxis native and Tull’s former schoolmate.
After Tull died, his sister, Hannah Tull Glisson, approached Miles and others about making her brother’s dream a reality.
The museum’s opening is a milestone for Miles as well — its creation along with the 2011 publication of Kirk Mariner’s history of Saxis, “Almost an Island,” fulfilled the top two items on his own post-retirement bucket list, he said.
The first six months museum organizers spent a lot of time on paperwork, including making application with the state to become incorporated and filing with the federal government for tax-exempt status — both of which have been achieved.
The group also set up a window display at the future museum site and installed a sign on the side of the building.
The Saxis Island Museum is located in the heart of town, in one half of a 1950s building also occupied by the town’s post office.
Virtually the entire town is turning out to support and celebrate the museum.
“We’re just trying to help them get kicked off on the right foot,” said Saxis Mayor Denise Drewer.
Events Saturday start at 7 a.m. with a town-wide yard sale that includes more than 30 participants.
|Carroll Lee Marshall/ Egret carving|
Being raffled are a wood duck carved by Kefford Linton and an egret carved by Carroll Lee Marshall. The raffle winners will be announced at noon Saturday at the museum and ticket purchasers do not have to be present to win.
|Kefford Linton/ Wood Duck Carving|
Raffle tickets are $5 each or five for $20 and are being sold at Martha’s Kitchen, Sherrye’s Snack Shack, Tall Pines Campground, T’s Corner and the Book Bin in Onley, as well as by calling Mayor Denise Drewer, 757-710-4747.
Linton also will be selling his carvings and Chesapeake Bay work boat models at the Saxis dock.
Works by three local authors also are part of the celebration.
Mariner’s book, “Almost an Island” will be on sale at the museum.
Glenn Linton will be selling his books at Sherrye’s Snack Shack at 20051 Saxis Road and poet Michael Marshall will be selling his new book at his house at 20117 Saxis Road.
The museum itself will offer free admission for the day and will have museum T-shirts for sale. Museum memberships also are available and donations will be gladly accepted.
Visitors to the museum and the town Saturday will have several eateries to choose from if they get hungry.
Martha’s Kitchen at the Saxis dock will sell seafood sandwiches, hamburgers and hot dogs, sodas and more.
Sherrye’s Snack Shack at 20051 Saxis Road will sell ice cream, snow cones and other treats.
Capt. E’s Kitchen, Saxis’ newest restaurant, located at 9104 Starling Creek Road, will be selling cheese steak subs, cream of crab and vegetable beef soup and home made baked goods.
Restroom facilities will be available at the Saxis firehouse during the event.
The rain date for the celebration is Sept. 14.
Drewer said she has heard from lots of people planning to attend Saturday’s events. She said, “I think it’s going to be good — it’s going to be a nice day.”
Directions: Turn west off Route 13 onto Saxis Road at Temperanceville and drive about 12 miles into the town of Saxis. The museum is located near the Saxis firehouse.
To see the museum by appointment, call Miles at 703-328-2898.
For more information, go the the museum’s website, http://www.saxisislandmuseum.org. The museum also is on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SaxisIslandMuseum.