Midnight Madness in St. Michaels
ST. MICHAELS — A jolly time went down on the streets of town Saturday night, Dec. 1, for “Midnight Madness,” a funpacked evening of shopping that includes sales, specials, tastings, treats, music, dancing, entertainment and prizes.
Crowds packed Talbot Street and beyond as a few raindrops fell occasionally — but not enough to dampen spirits or the debit cards of those who were bent on finding that perfect gift.
The lights were bright, and doors were thrown open way into the night.
And even though it’s Christmas all year long at The Christmas Shop on Talbot Street, the store takes on a monumental presence during Midnight Madness.
Store owner Kathy Brown said the crowd favorite that night was ornaments.
“We have something for everybody,” she said, quoting one of their mottos.
A favorite guilty pleasure — whether it’s peanut butter toast, your latest movie star crush or scotch and soda — can be hung on a tree in the form of an ornament.
If you’re a motorhead, biker, football player, lactose intolerant, a guitar afficionado or health nut, there is something for you, plus lots of things that you haven’t thought of.
People filed through as Christmas Shop helpers Kelly Hager, Karen Doyle and Peg Favinger served their needs. Everyone who purchased goods at any store during Midnight Madness received raffle tickets for big drawings later in the evening.
Next door at the Old Town Candy Company, owner Mark Schramek said business was booming.
“It’s our busiest day of the year,” he said.
Holiday shoppers were zeroing in on favorite candies for friends and relatives, according to the staff.
Schramek said one of the store’s most popular items is Natasha’s Just Brittle, a Mar yland favorite manufactured in Baltimore. It was a finalist on the list of “Oprah’s Favorite Things” this year, he said.
Other treats customers stock up on during the holidays include Cardinal Chocolates made in Virginia and the stores’s own handmade sea salt and caramel truffles.
After 11 p.m., things began to reach a fever pitch with D.J. Mark Savage rocking the town, spinning tunes for a large group line dancing on Talbot Street.
The St. Michaels Police Department guarded the dancers and kept motorists under control.
Savage and Midnight Madness organizers were camped out under a large tent on the porch of The Galley restaurant. They were warmed by a container campfire and basked in the glow of a festive holiday tree.
Eight giant gift baskets with prizes totaling thousands of dollars in value were the drawing prizes. They contained rare bottles of wine, night stays at the Inn at Perry Cabin by Belmond and a wide array of local goodies, organizers said.
Midnight Madness was made possible by many volunteers. The baskets were created mainly through the efforts of Eileen Morgan and J.C. Bridges.
Brad Fout and Bob Ehlers assisted Savage as the hour of the drawing drew nigh.
Impromptu singers stepped up to the microphone, including St. Michaels High School students Jayde Gilliece, Lydia Shrevs, Cat Jones, Savannah Stewart and Adrianna DiSilvestro singing “Jingle Bell Rock.”
Carly Nusbaum and Carter Laman sang “Feliz Navidad.”
Santa showed up to help with the drawing, and St. Michaels sixthgrader Grace Gallagher roamed up and down Talbot Street as the tallest elf ever.
Midnight Madness is a prelude for Christmas in St. Michaels, a townwide celebration this coming weekend.
The famous Christmas in St. Michaels Gingerbread Contest will be on display Friday through Sunday in the Woman’s Club of St. Michaels on St. Mary’s Square; the Yuletide Party will be at the Miles River Yacht Club Friday evening; Breakfast with Santa on Saturday morning will be at the Lighthouse Oyster Bar & Grill on Mulberry Street; St. Luke’s United Methodist Church will serve a holiday breakfast Saturday morning; starting 10:30 a.m., Talbot Street will be blocked off for the St. Michaels holiday parade; an Old Fashioned Eastern Shore Christmas Dinner will be ser ved at midday Saturday at the Union United Methodist Church Parish Hall; after the parade, there will be Christmas Fun for kids at the St. Michaels school complex, including talking with Santa, a Christmas store, face painting and a visit by Major League Bseball star Harold Baines; and the Christmas in St. Michaels Tour of Homes will be a rare opportunity.
The annual Christmas Train Villages at the St. Michaels Community Center will begin Friday, Dec. 7, and lasts until Wednesday, Dec. 12, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Baked goods and crafts will be on sale Saturday and Sunday.
For more information, visit www. christmasinstmichaels.org.
A large group line dances near Talbot Street to tunes spun by D.J. Mark Savage as the hour of prize drawing approaches during Midnight Madness in St. Michaels. The center of action was under a large tent set up at The Galley restaurant.
As midnight approaches, a large crowd covers Talbot Street to hear the prize winners during Midnight Madness in St. Michaels on Saturday evening.