Remembering Peg Wallace
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Linda Stilwell Larson, Annapolis, MD, March 29th, 2008 4:42 am, United States of America toggle

To the those who loved Peg,

In addition to Peg's many accomplishments she co-founded the Eastport May Basket Competition and the "Workshops for the Students" at the Eastport Elementary School.

A few years back Peg and I were munching on crab cakes at Davis' Pub in Eastport. I was extracting pearls of wisdom that only a true "Dame" can give of freely and with great passion. At some point we got onto the topic of the upcoming springtime and how important it always was to our tiny maritime hamlet of Eastport. We wanted a way to celebrate this vital time of year. We decided to "borrow" the idea of May Baskets from the Garden Club of Old Annapolis Towne. Only Peg had a few different ideas to give the event a a true Eastport feel. John Brock, owner of Davis's gave us our "headquarters" we made some ribbons by hand and grabbed a few friends. We were all set. Here are Peg's May Basket rules: 1) We would have judges giving out ribbons, with each basket recieving at leat a participant ribbon with special attention given to the children's division, 2) The judges were to wear (increasingly outrageous) hats, 3) Any materials could be used and 4) We could cheat. Let me explain the later. If word got to us somehow that a participant really deserved or needed to win the "Best in Show" ribbon, then they did. For example, one year Peg said, "so and so is very ill but look she made a basket out of crab mallets. It sure looks better than any other basket, don't you think?" So it went. Ours was not about flowers as much as it was about living and working in a maritime peninsula with and admittedly off-beat personality with spring right at hand. That was 13 years ago.

Later, we began conducting workshops at the Eastport Elementary School. We would bring an instructor, a bunch of May Day Committee Members and enough materials (Thanks to Dick Franyo at the Boatyard Grill) for scores of 4th graders to make May Baskets to take home. Our goal here was to inspire students to consider formal education and vocations in farming, landscaping, retail, importing and art, etc. It was a huge success.

So when May first rolls around, take a drive around Eastport. There you will see beautiful evidence of a beautiful life.

On behalf of the scores of past and present committee members, competition participants and students, thank you Peg for being "the real thing", an authentic “Eastporter”.

I will miss you my dear friend.

Linda Stilwell Larson
Co-Founding Chair
Eastport May Basket Competition &
Eastport Elementary "Workshops for the Students"

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