If you are Catholic and do not know the history of St. Clements Island I suggest you do a little research. This island is a very important piece of our history as Catholics.
We planned a field trip to St. Clements Island last year but because of our trips to Maine and Florida we decided we should wait. I was doing research on upcoming events and came across Heritage Day as well as other events that are celebrated at or near St. Clements Island. I thought we would have to wait to visit but things worked out (Thank you, Jesus) and we were able to make the trip.
The island is almost 2 hours from us so we decided to leave around 8am. We are usually up and running around 7am so 8am is nothing. We got the kids all packed in the van and headed down the road. The drive was nice. Less traffic is always better. The more we drove the more I knew we were going to the right place. There were Catholic Churches everywhere like Baptist Churches in OK. Most of the houses had a statue of Mary in a grotto. Not just the statues but the woods. Being away from the city is always a joy for us. The kids really miss being able to run around freely, climb trees, and play in the dirt.
We arrived at the St. Clements Island Museum a little early. It gave us time to put sunscreen on the kids. We waited outside the museum patiently with some other people excited about what the museum and island had to offer for the day. I received compliments on the kids and their behavior which is pretty normal for us. My kiddos are pretty well behaved unless we are at Mass or very obvious home.
We walked around a little outside after a quick potty break and then walked to the water taxi. The kids started to get very excited. The boys all love boats so getting to ride on one was a treat. It was a pretty smooth ride over to the island. The kewlest part was that we had one of the re-enactors with us. He talked a little about who he was and about the island. It was the best introduction to the island we could have gotten.
We arrived at the island and followed the group of people we had come over with. You can’t exactly get lost but feeling like you know where your going is nice. The kids loved running on the path through the woods. It’s a long path but well worth it. At the end of the path we found games, watermelon and cold water. The things the kids gravitated to most were blowing bubbles and trying out the stilts. It brought me back to the time when my grandpa helped my brothers and I make stilts and learn to walk on them. (Coffee cans are the easiest way to make them.) The kids played each game a little while before deciding they were ready for a cup of cold water and a slice of watermelon.
We walked a little farther to find the forty foot cross standing near the lighthouse. The cross was built during the Great Depression as part of Maryland’s 300th birthday celebration. The cross towers over you as a reminder that America is the land of freedom of religion. The trials that all Christians have faced are well worth me being able to say that I love Jesus and am a Catholic.
The Blackistone Lighthouse replica was near by so the boys literally ran to it. We were met by one of the re-enactors saying the kids could take turns ringing the bell. The kids had a blast ringing the bell. What is it with kids and noise? George and I split the kids up in order to be able to explore the lighthouse more. He took Pippi, Duke, and Pooh. While I had Jem, Bubbles, and Baby Kermit. We walked around and explored the inside of the lighthouse replica. There were more rooms that I have ever seen in other lighthouses. The kewlest part was being able to go up in the very top. It was scary getting up and down but the view was amazing.
The boys started to get a little whiny so I knew it was time for a snack. I bought apples and peanut butter crackers for this exact scenario. The boys always seem to be hungry. Everybody ate their snack quickly so that we could go explore the small beach. It was a nice little beach with shells everywhere. Duke decided he preferred his shoes wet and sandy at some point. Thankfully his shoes dried off and the sand fell off. The girls collected a few shells and we started the long walk back to the water taxi.
Once we were back at the museum we took a quick look around before deciding we were all just ready to eat. George always does the best research on finding a nearby restaurant. We stopped at the Morris Point restaurant.It was in a weird but nice location. The view of the river is beautiful. The menu is mostly comprised of seafood, so if that’s your thing you are in luck. The kids all finished their food quickly and wanted to play outside. It was a great end to a wonderful day visiting an amazing part of our history as Catholics.