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November 21st, 2019

The Grove Market, Bishopville, MD, Restaurant, Review, The Art of Wining and Dining, Delmarva

The menu should be part of the entertainment, part of the dining experience. The 3 Cs “I like my food like my fashion: Casual, Classy, and with a Touch of Couture”.

And so our dining experience took us to The Grove Market, located at 12402 Saint Martins Neck Rd., Bishopville, MD 21813. Tel. 410-352-5055. This location is right outside Ocean City.

Crushed seashells pave the parking lot. Flags, a pizza sign, whimsical too. I believe the restaurant only has about 10 tables. And, yes, it is hard to get a reservation so give yourself about 2 weeks. Call, leave a message, give a few dates. If you like to eat late, I suggest you do so. Last reservation is at 9 p.m. Cash only. Checks accepted. It gets crowded in the summer. They only serve wine and beer.

Our reservation was at 8:30 a few weekends ago. This past Sunday, November 17th they closed until the beginning of May. For some of you it might be too late to eat but for us it was the perfect time to enjoy a relaxing dinner. John McDonal was the Chef Extraordinare, from Delaware, he works his magic in a very small kitchen. He has an amazing reputation and a wine connoisseur.

There is no menu. Out loud at your dinner table or if you are seated in the back it will be for the few tables to hear. You need to pay attention because they do offer a lot, both for the appetizers and the entrees.

You will find at the Grove Market quality in their ingredients, culinary competence because John MacDonald outdoes himself every time, service is personal and attentive. The ambiance? Well, you can see by the photos that it is a little quirky. Come hungry because they serve healthy portions. About $100 per person give or take.

The menu changes but they do have a lot of the customers’ favorites throughout the season.

Crab Remick
No Noodles Beef Stroganoff

I usually order the duck. It is a Delaware duck, roasted with a semi-sweet sauce and chutney. It is so good….only bones left on the plate kind of a dish.

On this particular night I let TC order it and I ordered a shrimp and crab dish. Crabs from Smith Island, no less, with a bit of Sherry and a slight kick to the dish. Yummy.

The breadsticks are a reminder that once upon a time this little restaurant was also a Pizza place.

I can honestly tell you that everything at the Grove Market is consistently good. Other dishes that are delicious are:

The Rack of Lamb

The Scallops

The Crab Cakes

There are several desserts to try but it seems that one of the most popular ones is the Bumbleberry Pie. There is no such thing as a Bumbleberry…it is just a mixture of berries.

Leslie, the owner, had time to chat on our visit which was great since in the summer there is, practically, no time.

It is a special place. Keep it in mind when you visit next season. You will not be disappointed.

Until next time…..Have a Happy Thanksgiving. Please check AboutMyBeaches Facebook Page.

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July 12th, 2019

The Grove Market, Restaurant, Review, Bishopville, Maryland, The Art of Wining and Dining, Delmarva

“Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious” ruth reichl

I first wrote about The Grove Market in 2009. This was before I had incorporated photos in my posts. Having photos is wonderful because, we, humans, are so visual. The scenery, the colors, always create an impact in our minds.

A few weeks ago I had guests and we were on the go from the moment they arrived. On Friday evening we met my friend, Cindi, and her husband in West Ocean City and from there we took to 12402 Saint Martins Neck Rd., Bishopville, MD 21813. Tel. 410-352-5055. My guests had no idea where we were taking them. Then, the first impression of the place was the photo above taken. What would you say about this tiny place on a country road not far from Ocean City?

My friend’s husband told them to please choose the cheese pizza because it was the best. They were like….really?

Inside what you will find is a small bar, only beer and wine is served at The Grove Market. And only about 10 tables. We sat in the back of the building.

As you can see, very simple, funky and also whimsical.

The pizza story is not way off. At some point it was a pizza place. The breadsticks served are from the pizza recipe from those years long ago. It was a fish market too.

There is a protocol to get a reservation. You call, if nobody answers leave the message with the time of the reservation and day. And, give another time as well or day. If Leslie calls you and tells you I only have this or that, please take it. This is a special place. The food is outstanding.

Cash only. Depending how much wine or beer you drink the cost will vary. Between $100 and $120 per person to be on the safe side. Be prompt, and you cannot linger. The place is small and others want to experience what you just had.

I have mentioned before that there are 5 ingredients for a good restaurant; quality of ingredients, culinary competence, service, ambiance, and price. The Grove Market has all those. You’ll see when you go.

John McDonald is chef extraordinare. In a very small kitchen he creates unique dishes full of flavor. Many years ago he owned The Garden Gourmet in Rehoboth Beach. He is a wine connoiseur, as well. He truly is excellent and so nice.

Here is our group. Patrick is Leslie’s brother and he is such a character. The restaurant does not have a menu. First the appetizers, then the dinner, then dessert. Out loud so the group of tables in the back need to pay attention. When Patrick danced the Macarena, I knew we would have a good time.

So this is what we had:

Appetizers:

Please have in mind that even though the menu changes here and there, they continue to have many favorites all the time.

Crab Remick was ordered by Cindi. I have had it before and at this time of the year the crabmeat is superb.

Our friend, Jody, ordered the Beef Stroganoff….served with no noodles.

Patti ordered the Cream of Crab Soup. Thick and full of crab, with a hint of Sherry.

And I ordered a salad that could have been shared.

Wine was ordered. But, I was a designated driver so nothing for me.

Now dinner…..Patrick came out again, veryl lively to announce their offerings. A few of us already knew what we wanted. Practically, we always order their duck. A Delaware duck, no less. It was roasted to perfection wih a semi-sweet sauce and chutney. Ross and I did not want to share with anyone and the bones were clean at the end.

Cindi had the lamb. If I had not had the duck that would have been my other choice. It looked fantastic.

Another excellent choice that is usually on the menu are the scallops. Jody ordered them and look how perfectly cooked they look. See the breadstick on the side of his plate. This is what I was talking about at the beginning of the post. How they have kept the pizza dough recipe and added as a bread.

Our friend, Patti, ordered the crabcakes. No fillers just tremendous lump.

Some entrees came with the side dish of cucumbers, onions, breadstick and potatoes. The others had it already on their plates.

A few desserts were ordered. The portions at The Grove Market are healthy ones. But, it is always good to order a few.

The Bumbleberry is a pie of a mixture of berries. There is no such thing as a bumbleberry. It is usually on the menu.

And also, usually on the menu is the Chocolate Silk Pie.

The story goes like this….Do you remember the movie Runaway Bride? It was mostly filmed in Berlin, Maryland. Not far away from The Grove Market. Apparently they were looking for a restaurant to feed their crew and stars. The Grove Market fed them through the duration of the filming.

I can go on an on talking about a restaurant and its food. But, it is the people that share your meal that make it priceless!!

Give it a try. Let me know on my AboutMyBeaches Facebook page how you rate your experience. Until then, Summer 2019 continues.

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April 21st, 2019

Ish, Shop, Apparel, Home, Beauty, Baby!! Ocean City, Maryland, Ish is Opening in Downtown Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

A couple of weeks ago my friend, Sharon, and I stopped by Ish. This boutique is located at 3408 Coastal Hwy., Ocean City, MD 21842. Website? http://www.ishshop.com

The owner of Ish is Christina Lawson. A very dedicated and fun young woman who is taking this boutique to a different level. It is basically, a women’s boutique but she has a little bit for everyone….almost every woman could find something here for her, for the home, gifts and even for babies.

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Here is Christina with my friend, Sharon. It was the opening for the 2019 season. Ish is opening in a few weeks in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware at 403 Rehoboth Ave. Already, as I drive by the store in Rehoboth it looks like it is getting ready. The light and airy lifestyle of our beaches is something that will be seen throughout the store.

Make sure you check out the website because they do offer online shopping.

Look at some of the things we found at Ish in Ocean City.

Over the years I have always said that there is nothing better than the personal touch of a boutique. Stay in touch and keep because I believe the opening is the week-end of May 3rd.

Anyway, at least stop by and say hello. You will fall in love with her.

Until next time….I hope your Easter Sunday is grand.

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May 22nd, 2016

What’s Going On? Puttin’ On The Ritz, Event, 23rd Year Anniversary Celebration, Fun-Fundraising, Atlantic General Hospital, Meet Me at the “Speakeasy”, Berlin, Maryland, Maryland’s Eastern Shore

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I could not believe it!! No rain! Can you imagine?  We have been so inundated with rain that I was not sure how this event was going to turn out.  But, as it happens, on Thursday, May 19th, the skies were clear, the moon and the stars were out and the location was mesmerizing.

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It was going to be a celebration of the 23rd year anniversary of Atlantic General Hospital located at 9733 Healthway Dr., Berlin, MD 21811.  Tel. 410-641-1100.  Website?  http://www.atlanticgeneral.org.

We were meeting at the “Speakeasy”, where the event was taking place.  This is the farm of the Host and Hostess, Mr. & Mrs. Buddy Jenkins.  Atlantic General has been celebrating its anniversaries with an annual event.  Fun and Fundraising for the hospital.  This year’s theme was the Roaring 20’s and with 500 people of their supporters, family and friends in attendance it was certainly a memorable evening.

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Most of the attendees wore 1920’s dress code…..long pearls, fringes…it was a time of excess.  Games and crafted cocktails.  You picked your own glass at the entrance and fill it to your hearts desires.  The tent was huge and it was very well appointed.  The center pieces were gorgeous, as well.  No detail was left out.

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LA Catering from Liquid Assets located at 94th & Coastal Highway in Ocean City, Maryland did a spectacular job with their catering.  Besides their restaurant in Ocean City their catering side of it can work magic for any of your events, small or large.  As you can see they fed 500 and there was no shortage of food throughout the evening.  Tel. 410-524-7037  Website?  http://www.ocliquidassets.com.

We are located on the eastern shore so seafood is regarded as a main staple at events.  Surrounding the Speakeasy there were stations where attendees could fill their plates and come back for more.

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Oysters on the half shell, shrimp, smoke scallop salad, smoked salmon, crab claws!!

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Softshells!!  My favorites!

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Cheeses and Charcuterie!!

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Lisa & Cindi checking it out!

Lisa & Cindi checking it out!

Seafood Paella.

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Sushi!!

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Dessert!!  That sweet ending that completes a meal….Have you had the doughnuts made in house at Liquid Assets?  They are to die for.  At the event they gave them a little twist.  You could customize them.  They were warm, perfect to hold in one hand or on your plate and then the sweet condiments on top.

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I took a look at the cakes….could they possibly be the cakes that have been the talk of the town?  Yes!!  I could not believe it.  I am going to learn more about the two guys that are from Brooklyn and call themselves the Brooklyn Baking Barons.  The cakes featured the other night were Honey Whiskey Cakes, accompanied by local strawberries.  They were so good that at the table we all went back for seconds.  They are the perfect size…guilt free shall we say?  They will be opening a store front in Berlin, I believe on or around Memorial Week-End.  Check them on Facebook.  From their website they ship nationwide.  http://www.bkbarons.com.

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Cannot wait to taste a new flavor….the Limoncello Cake with homemade Limoncello….Justin Noble, a friend of theirs said this new cake is out of this world.

It is that time of the year to fund raise at the Maryland and Delaware Beaches.  People have big hearts here.  Lucky to call it home!!

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January 10th, 2016

West Ocean City Eats! Bull on the Beach, Horn & Shell, Raw Bar, Canteen, West Ocean City, Maryland

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It just opened about one month ago, but already some of my friends are becoming habitual frequenters to this new place to eat in West Ocean Cit, Maryland at 12611 Ocean Gateway.  It is right next to West O Bottle Shop.  Tel. 410-213-7020.  Website? http://www.hornandshelloc.com.

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It is a casual place.  Come as you are.  It is serving Small Plates, Crafted Signature Sandwiches, Daily Soups, Greens, Oyster Shooters…a Shell Bar!! Desserts!!

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Arriving for a quick lunch, Cindi and I ordered oysters.  Salty and cold!!

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We decided to eat Tapas stye; choosing from their Shares & Tasters Small Plates.  An order of Beer Brined Wings…Brined and grilled and then dunked in the fyer to finish.  We wanted them well done!  We chose the Mojito Glaze.

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Black Skillet Corn Bread was dense, rich and warmed on the Pit.  It was served with 3 housemade spreads on the side…savory butter, sun-dried tomato pesto, and cheddar cheese spread.

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Our third taster was K.H. Beef Plank…Paper thin, super rare Pit Beef, pickled red onion, greens, shaved parmesan, chimichurri, and crisp bread.

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Thanks Nikki for your suggestions and for taking care of us so well.

Talk to you later.

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December 17th, 2015

Women & Wine, The Swirl Girls, Ocean City, Maryland, Thanks for a Great Evening

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A glass or two of wine with friends is one of life’s greatest pleasures.  The Swirl Girls started in Ocean City, Maryland, almost 6 years ago by a group of friends that enjoy wines.  Women and Wine, it is all about good conversation and great wines to taste.  And, dinner is usually served, as well.

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Once a month throughout the year they get together.  One person is the host, she provides the food, the rest bring what they would like to drink which is usually wine but there a few that prefer spirits at times.

And, at this time of the year, Donna, gives a Swirl Girls Christmas Party.  It is at this time that “members” can invite friends to attend.  And, that is where I come into the picture.  My friend, Cindi, invited me.

We were to only bring a present worth about $20 or so with an Italian theme.  We arrived at Donna’s to find the house totally decorated, the tables set, and the Swirl Girls ready to mingle with friends.

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Nobody is posing for photos so what you see is what I got.

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Tasting wine is not the same as drinking it.  You have to pay attention to those acute senses of sight, smell, touch and taste.

A true Swirl Girl holds the stem of the wine glass, and gently swirls the glass in small circles on a flat surface, allowing the oxygen to penetrate the wine.  You are aerating the wine.  As the wine coats the sides of the glass, it releases its bouquet.

For dinner, we had pasta, Caesar Salad, shrimp, cheeses, breads and soups.

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For dessert homemade cakes, cannoli and cookies.

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Then the Presents…..We all got one number.  Everyone got a present.  By the order of numbers, starting with number 1, this person opens her present, then the person with number 2 decides if she wants that present or she can open her own.  In reality you can steal the other person’s present.  And so the evening went.  For example, I got this bottle of Italian Pisa Liquor and was immediately snatched by one of my “friends”.

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Others were able to show their presents so others could make a decision.  The bottle of champagne was snatched too.

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The next photos show some of them wearing colanders.  There is a reason.  And, it is not that they had too much wine.  Did you read about the woman that wanted to wear a colander on her head on her license’s photo?  They finally did let her.  She is part of a “religion” called the Pastafarians.  I am not making this up.  You can research it yourself.  So being politically correct, we decided that the theme would still be Italian and few colanders showed up during the evening.

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The greatest gift of life is that of friendship, and I have received it!! At times I don’t get to see them often enough, but when we get together is like time have stood still.  Love it and I find it priceless!!

Yeah, it's all here.

Yeah, it's all here.

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October 29th, 2015

West Ocean City, MD Eats!! Fat Fish OC, Restaurant, Review, Opens Daily, Good Food?, Will Travel, Ocean City, Maryland

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It was warm, it was sunny, we probably could have eaten outside.  Arriving with my partner in crime, Cindi, to Fat Fish OC located at 12703 Sunset Avenue, Unit 7, Ocean City, MD 21842.  Tel. 410-390-5006.  Website?  http://www.fatfishoc.com.

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You can find it on Facebook as Fat Fish OCMD….please Like the page because Fat Fish is very active on FB and also they are opening other restaurants….you might not want to miss out on all the specials coming up as the Second Season continues at the beaches.  Hey guess what?  They do deliver.  Fat Fish opens at 11 a.m. until 11 p.m.

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The restaurant is not big.  It is so cute and very local, indeed.

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Meet Joe, the owner, as he was getting ready to chow on the daily special…Today’s Bruschetta Burger.  I saw with my own eyes.  1/2 lb burger, pesto, buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil on a brioche bun.

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But, get a little closer…you want to get a good look at it, don’t you?  Here it is.  Yum!!

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Cindi ordered the Blue Crab Tacos.  Their tacos are well known and one of the most ordered items, as well.

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And I ordered the Fat Fish Sandwich…Tempura battered tuna and shrimp, wasabi, mayo, red onion, lettuce, tomato and cilantro crema.  Look how beautiful it looks.  First I ate the shrimp and then followed with the sandwich.  Awesome indeed!

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Would you like to check the menu?  Please visit http://www.fatfishoc.com/menu/

So now you know about this great local place.  Worth the trip.

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September 25th, 2015

Destination? Sunfest, Ocean City, Maryland, Fall Festival, The Second Season, Arts, Crafts, Live Entertainment, Maryland Beaches

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Opening Day for Sunfest in Ocean City, Maryland was Thursday, September 24, 2015.  It is ranked the number one arts and crafts festival in the nation!!  It was filled with crafts, arts, food and entertainment.  Everything for the whole family to enjoy.

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Walking on the award-winning boardwalk the visitors were enjoying a beautiful day at the beach.

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Passing the ever popular Thrasher’s French Fries, already the line was so long.  To tell you the truth I am not such a big fan of them because I like my fries crispy.

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Hundreds and hundreds of people were checking out this first day of Sunfest.  Apparently, the weather might be a little crazy on Saturday evening, so if you get a change today and tomorrow, please stop by.

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The tent we were looking for was the Food Tent and we immediately found it.

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One food vendor after another.  If you have been at Sunfest before you probably have your favorites.

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You can sit down in the many tables available or just stand and use the tall tables as well.

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Funnel Cakes anyone?

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We decided on some Seafood Bisque with Lace chips!! Perfect combination.  They were so light.

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Ross decided on pulled chicken and regular just made chips.

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Sunfest will be opening Friday and Saturday from 10 1.m. until 10 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 .am. until 6 p.m.  During the day you can enjoy the live entertainment completely free, either in their open air venue or inside the tent.  In the evening the live entertainment is by ticket holder.  Depending on the entertainer you tickets could be as low as $15 to $60.  Please visit http://www.ococean.com

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Stop Mr. Elvis himself, local color in Ocean City for many years.  Known to all the residents.  Take a photo.  He loves it!!

Some of the crafts that caught our attention:

Wire Sculpture by Devin Mack of Drawn Metal Studios.

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The lady that works with clay.  She has been at the festival for years.  You can see her working the clay with such minute detail.

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The driftwood sailboats and ships were really cute.  The company is Art Sea., from Pasadena, Maryland.

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The painted ostrich eggs were very detailed.  Loved Starry Nights.

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This next company’s baking is not your usual.  It looked so real, you could taste it…The Fake Baker.

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The beautiful Adirondack Chairs, Hinkleys Chair Art….whatever you want, they will paint it.

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Grabbing beers and on our way to listen to Skinny Leg Pete.  Definitely a party band.  Their genre?  soul, funk, blues and rock.  And, yes, people were dancing.

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And then followed by Teenage Rust on the outdoor stage.

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Thanks Cindi for inviting me…It was a great time with a BFF.

Have a great week-end!!

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