Bending Water Park up for state recognition

County Times
Posted 12/1/14

BALTIMORE — Maryland Traditions, the Folklife Program of the Maryland State Arts Council, has announced that Bending Water Park in Marion will receive the ALTA Award for 2014. In addition, a second …

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Bending Water Park up for state recognition


BALTIMORE — Maryland Traditions, the Folklife Program of the Maryland State Arts Council, has announced that Bending Water Park in Marion will receive the ALTA Award for 2014. In addition, a second award will go to Bernard “Lefty” Kreh, a master of fly fishing and fly tying who invented the saltwater fishing fly “Lefty’s Deceiver” while in Crisfield.

The Achievement in Living Traditions and Arts award recognizes outstanding places, people and traditions in Maryland and the park will include an ALTA Award to representatives of the Baltimore-founded craft of painted screens during an awards ceremony Dec. 6 at the Montgomery College of Cultural Arts Center in Silver Spring.

“In this global age, it is important to connect with the cultures that make Maryland a truly distinct place,” said Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development Secretary Dominick Murray. “The ALTA Awards honor and celebrate the deep roots of our past and the people, places and traditions of today that keep our heritage alive.”

Bending Water Park, located on Farm Market Road opposite Holland Crossing Road, is the launch point for Indian Water Trails. The site comprises of indigenous cultural landscapes and waterways that are connected to the history and heritage of the Accohannock Indian Tribe. There is an outdoor museum showcasing traditional dwellings and a public campground.

For many years the site has been host to the Accohannocks’ annual “Healing of All Nations” Pau-wau, and is central to the continuation of traditional and contemporary ways of life of the Accohannock people.

The adjacent Indian Water Trails — branching from the Pocomoke Sound, at the mouth of the Pocomoke River — include a dock at the park for kayak and canoe excursions on the waterways. According to a Maryland Arts Council spokesperson, “Bending Water Park and the Indian Water Trails is a significant place for the Accohannock Indian Tribe in sharing the story of their community, while aiding in the conservation of an ecologically diverse and historically evocative landscape on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.”

At the request of the Accohannock Tribal Council, Chief Rudy “Laughing Otter” Hall will accept the ALTA Award on behalf of the Accohannock Indian Tribe.

In addition to fly fishing and tying, Mr. Kreh is an expert guide, journalist and environmental consultant. He is considered the foremost expert on fly-casting and salt-water fly fishing in the world. His Lefty’s Deceiver fly was on a 1991 U.S. Postage stamp.

“Many credit Lefty with inventing saltwater fly fishing, and his creation of ‘Lefty’s Deceiver’ was a major reason for the sport’s popularization locally and internationally. Lefty is a dedicated mentor of young anglers through Maryland Trout Unlimited, and is a dynamic advocate for environmental conservation.”

In addition to the ceremony, this year’s ALTA Awards includes a headlining performance by R&B/Soul legends The Holmes Brothers, recipients of the 2014 National Heritage Fellowship. The ceremony will also feature a performance by Danny Paisley, Dave Reed, and Hugh Campbell to highlight their participation in the forthcoming Dust-to-Digital multimedia publication, Ola Belle Reed & Southern Mountain Music on the Mason-Dixon Line.

For free tickets to ceremony, call the box office at 240-567-5775.

The ALTA Award was created in 2007 to honor the legacy of folklorist Dr. Alta Schrock (1911-2001). Dr. Schrock, a native of Garrett County, taught biology at Frostburg State University and was the driving force behind the creation of Spruce Forest Artisan Village, Penn Alps, The Journal of the Alleghenies and the Springs Festival, to name a few of her achievements in cultural conservation.

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