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oyster-festival-maryland-blogMaryland’s 18th annual Oyster Festival will be held on Sunday, October 16 at the Captain Avery Museum from 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Celebrating the favorite fruit of Chesapeake Bay, seafood lovers are cordially invited to feast on raw and fried oysters, oyster stew, and fried oyster roll sushi. Cream of crab soup and Maryland crab soup will also be offered. Performances by local musicians, arts and crafts, and face painting will be a part of the entertainment during the festivities. There will also be demonstrations showing the vital role oysters play in maintaining the health of the Chesapeake Bay. Admission is only $6 for adults and $2 for children 12 and under.

Captain Avery Museum

The scenic bayside site was the home of Captain Salem Avery, a waterman from Long Island, New York, who pursued the oyster business south to Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay, where he married a local woman and in 1860 built a home. The couple raised seven children, and Avery plied his trade until passing away in 1890. One of Avery’s sons and his family lived in the home until 1920. Subsequently, it was bought by a lodge of Jewish Masons from Washington, D.C., who used it as a summer vacation house for their families and built an addition in 1927. It was purchased by the Shady Side Rural Heritage Society in 1989.


The Shady Side Rural Heritage Society was founded in 1984 to preserve Maryland’s South County history and culture. The histories of local families and the area’s traditions were prioritized. Within only 5 years, they were able to purchase the waterfront property now known as the Captain Avery Museum. The site was successful and soon began sponsoring educational programs, a library, community events, speakers, and Chesapeake Bay stewardship programs. The house was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

Restoration & Additions

The original Avery family home was restored to its 1860 appearance. The 1927 addition was transformed into the museum’s office, a rental apartment, and facilities for community activities, receptions and meetings. In 1993, a boat shed was built, and then land was bought to expand parking and allow for future growth. In 1998, a new extension provided space for both library and storage of archives.


The Museum’s collection features Avery family artifacts. Most notable is the family Bible given to Mrs. Avery as a wedding gift. The house’s furniture reflects the furnishings of their time and is similar to that of other watermen who lived in the area during the period. Thus, their daily lives can be interpreted by artifacts commonly used in the era.

A B&B Near the Captain Avery Museum

The museum is about a 37-minute drive away from Gibson’s Lodgings, a historic inn located in downtown Annapolis. Call us to reserve your bed & breakfast room at our toll free number 877-330-0057. We’ll be very happy to serve you and your family throughout the year.

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