Final preparations are being made for the 14th Annual Shepherdstown Back Alley Tour that will be conducted this weekend (May 19 and 20) from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and 11:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. This delightful Shepherdstown Community Club (SCC) family event has expanded in recent years to include an elegant Tea Party from 11 a.m. 3 p.m. each day and the Friday Painters Art Exhibit which will be held from 10-8 each day. Both are held in the War Memorial Building. In addition to the 20 gardens and interesting sites included in the Tour, a visit to the Thomas Shepherd Mill will be added as a special bonus for participants. A portion of the water from Town Run will be diverted and the mill wheel will be in operation.
The gardens are carefully selected to ensure that visitors have the opportunity to leisurely stroll through the back alleys of Shepherdstown and enjoy much of what makes the town so unique. The self-directed route is varied each year to keep it fresh and interesting, particularly since many families return year after year. Volunteer docents will be on station at each site to highlight various features and answer any questions. Often you will be greeted by a proud property owner. Participants often do part of the tour, take a break to enjoy the Tea Party and Art Exhibits and then return. Tickets for the entire tour and tea are $20 each and can be purchased at the Sweet Shop, the Village Florist or Bistro 112 or on-line using pay-pal. They will also be available at the desk on the first floor of the War Memorial Building. Those desiring to attend the Tea Party only may purchase tickets for $15. The Tea is free for children under 10.
Bonnie Austin, who has coordinated the Tea Party for the past several years, commented that "the BATT has consistently grown to encompass much more than just a Shepherdstown Community Club event. It really is an example of the town's hospitality that comes from all quarters; residents, businesses, town officials, and non- profit organizations as well. The driving force that makes it so successful is the individual and collective pride in our little community. What better way than this to help celebrate Shepherdstown's 250th birthday?"