The quiet season

January 6, 2019


I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that January is not my favorite month. Christmas, my favorite time of year, is just behind us, which means I have a long time to wait until that merry season rolls around again. Besides the cold weather, January means you have to make good on all those resolutions to lose the extra pounds delivered with the Christmas cookies, or clean the messy closet where you shoved all the Christmas leftovers.


Here at the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC) in Cape May, January is catch-up time for us, too. Time to give the Physick House a good, thorough cleaning. Time to get the trolleys serviced before Spring comes with more tours. Time to give all of us who put in countless hours on holiday tours and events a needed breather. And it’s a good time to take stock of how 2017 treated us.


One of the things that always heartens me is the continuing number of school children from throughout the county and local region who are able to experience our historic sites. We reach more than 20,000 kids (a number which grows each year), those who came through our doors at the Physick Estate, the Cape May Lighthouse or the World War II Lookout Tower, as well as those in classrooms who heard our stories thanks to our corps of museum educators. What makes this especially gratifying is that it all happened at no cost to the kids or the schools. Various fundraising events, most notably the annual Craft Beer, Music & Crab Festival in August, make this possible.


The irony of my current association with MAC never fails to amuse me, since history was one of my least favorite subjects as a student. Just as I once did, I know that for most kids, a field trip here is a way to get out of classes and an in-class presentation about the Lighthouse beats a math or history lesson hands-down. Hopefully, though, some of them will take away the real lesson, which is about the amazing monuments to our past for which we at MAC act as caretakers. There aren’t a whole lot of towns that can take pride in the important historic sites we generally take for granted.


This is also our time for planning ah