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Lewes, Delaware
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June 17, 2008     Cape Gazette
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June 17, 2008

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in J[i Cape Gazette Cape Life TUESDAY, JUNE 17 - THURSDAY, JUNE 19, 2008 13 2008 Chautauqua kicks off in Lewes June 22 with Sousa Great American musicians John Philip Sousa, Biliie Holiday, George Gershwin and Delaware's own Clifford Brown will be brought back to life dur- ing the 10th annual Chautauqua Tent Show that will take place in Lewes, Sunday-Wednesday, June 22-25. A unique mixture of education and entertainment, Lewes' 2008 Chautauqua will be held under a large tent and will feature re-en- actors who take on the personas of the four featured American musicians, educating and enter- taining audiences as they give history a human face. Audience members are encouraged to ask questions and interact with the reenactors who will remain in character throughout the evening. On June 22 and 23 respectively, reenactors will portray John Philip Sousa and Billie Holiday at the Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway;, while on June 24 and 25 respectively, George Gershwin and Clifford Brown will be featured at the Lewes Historical Society, 110 Shipear- penter St. Activities on each day will be- gin at noon with a series of mu- sic, crafts and talks on historic subjects, culminating with the featured reeuaetor program at 7 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. A complete sched- ule of events is available at /ehautauqua.pdf. Chautauqua takes its name from a series of adult education programs that were fwst held at a campsite on the shores of Lake Chautauqua in upstate New York during the late 19th century. Chautauquas spread throughout America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries bringing speakers, teachers, musicians, entertain- ers, preachers and specialists of the day to a wide cross-section of the nation's rural and small-town population. Circuit Chautauquas (or colloquially, Tent Chau- tauquas) were an itinerant mani- festation of the movement. Pro- grams would be presented in tents pitched in a field near town. After several days, the Chautauqua would fold its tents and move on to the next commu- nity. The popularity of Chau- tauquas peaked in the mid-1920s, after which radio, movies and au- tomobiles brought about the gradual disappearance of the movement by the 1940s. Reborn in the 1970s as a vehi- cle for humanities education, modem Chautauquas are organ- ized around a core program in which re-enaetors take on the persona of celebrated historical figures, speaking and interacting with audiences, often in the set- ting of a large outdoor tent. In Delaware, modem Chautanquas have been presented annually since 1999 under the auspices of the Delaware Humanities Forum featuring a wide variety of his- torical figures including Ben- jamin Franklin; Sacagawea, a Shoshoni Indian guide; Mark Twain; Harriet Tubman; Delaware patriot Caesar Rodney;, and Dr. Yee Fung, a Gold Rush doctor. In 2008, Delaware's Chautauqua is co-sponsored by the Lewes Historical Society and the Delaware Division of Histori- cal and Cultural Affairs, with grant support from the Delaware Humanities Forum. Additional programs that will be taking place in Lewes during the week of June 21-28 include the 18th annual Lewes Garden Tour on June 21 and Lewes Sea- faring Days on June 27 and 28, sponsored by the Lewes Histori- cal Society. The Zwaanendael Museum was built in 1931 to commemo- rate the 300th anniversary of the state's first European colony, Swanendael, established by the Dutch along Hoom Kill (present- day Lewes-Rehoboth Canal) in 1631. Designed by E. William Martin, architect of Legislative Hall and the Hall of Records in Dover, the museum is modeled after the town hall in Hoorn, the Netherlands, and features a stepped facade gable with carved stonework and decorated shut- ters. The museum's exhibits and presentations provide a show- case for Lewes-area maritime, military and social history. The museum is currently fea- turing the exhibit, Rediscovery Through Recovery, which dis- plays artifacts from the wreck of the Severn, a British commercial ship that sank off Lewes' Roo- sevelt Inlet in the late 18th centu- ry. The LewesHistorical Society is committed to promoting the preservation, interpretation, and cultural enrichment of Lewes, SUBMITTED PHOTO THE ZWAANENDAEL MUSEUM was built in 1931 to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the state's first European colony, Swanendael, established by the Dutch. Delaware - one of America's most historic towns. As part of its mission, the soci- ety maintains 12 restored historic properties, dating from 1665 to 1898. Open for public visitation, these properties, in conjunction with the society's educational programs and special events, help to tell Lewes' story of mar- itime adventure, architectural el- egance and more than 375 years of colonial charm. The Zwaanendael Museum is one of eight museums adminis- tered by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Af- fairs, an agency of the state. Saltwater Portrait )) Rob Wyatt puts the brakes on Cape Region car problems By Kevin Spence Ob Wyatt likes to tinker underneath the cars brought into his shop. But he quickly shifts gears when a customer has a question about the work that's been done. Wyatt, 39, owns The Garage on Route 1 and after six years in business, he said the best part of his job is making people happy. "I've always been around cars;' he says - a family tradition that eventually became a family business. In 2002, he bought a transmis- sion shop that today is a thriv- ing, all-service repair garage, where he also sells used cars. "We touch 350 cars a month," he said. "I own all these cars that are for sale. I always wanted my own business. We opened it up KEVIH SPENCE PHOTO ROB WYATT has owned The Garage on Route 1 for the past six years. Besides fix- ing cars and drag racing, he enjoys the challenge of meeting his customers' needs. and here we are six years later. It's not a fabulous story, but it's my story," he said. Clients often need immediate repair and pace the shop waiting for a belt to be replaced or an oil change to be finished. He injects himself into conversations in an effort to provide the best possi- ble customer service. "What's not going to be ready?" he asks one of his employees, who is re- sponding to a customer. Wyatt is a father of four who works at least 60 hours a week. Even with the economic slow- down, business remains steady and customer service remains his top priority. These days, however, he said he and his crew are performing more jobs for about the same amount of pay. He wears dark blue shorts and a faded red shirt with his name in an oval patch. His gray hair feathers out from underneath his baseball cap, which has a car- toon car and a lighting bok blaz- ing across the brim. When a cus- tomer asks a question, he starts talking about intake manifolds, fuel cells and spools. By the end of the conversation, the cus- tomer says he'll be back. Sherry, his wife of 14 years, looks after their four children: Bobby, 13; Emmy, 10; Sammy, 7; and ]oey, 4. He proudly lifts his sleeve up to reveal a hand of playing cards and his son's name underneath. All four tattoos hon- or his children, spelling out their names. A fifth tattoo is a car en- gine bursting with color. He jokes and says the most difficult part of his job is babysit- ting his kids at The Garage when Sherry drops them offto run er- rands. "Don't put that in," he says with a laugh. "My wife will get mad at me." His work family includes five full-time mechanics and an ad- ministrator. He points out that all his workers are Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certi- fied. His right-hand man is shop foreman Brian Gra; he said. "He does everything. He's a 43-year veteran of the area and a master ASE technician," said Wyatt. Continued on page 14