MOUNTAIN LAKE PARK — The fifth and final episode of “Mountain Chautauqua Stories” titled “The Legacy,” will premiere online on the Fourth of July.
The documentary series tells the story of how Mountain Lake Park became Maryland’s first and one of America’s top Chautauqua resort communities during the height of railroad tourism.
Following two World Wars, the Great Depression, and the collapse of passenger rail travel, Mountain Lake Park and its neighboring towns lost their grand hotels and many boarding homes that formerly pampered passengers from far and wide.
The documentary series captures each phase of the town’s rich history in five parts; “The Founders,” “The Faithful,” “The Robinsons,” “The Culture” and “The Legacy.”
“Mountain Chautauqua Stories,” by director Mark Stutzman, is sponsored in part by Mountain Maryland Gateway to the West, Maryland Heritage Areas and the town of Mountain Lake Park.
“The Legacy” highlights the 1990s when Mountain Lake Park native Kathryn Sincell-Corwell joined forces with world-renowned violin soloist, Erick Friedman. The pair organized the Deep Creek Symphony and Sincell-Corwell helped found Garrett Lakes Arts Festival to host an annual summer concert series at Garrett College.
The musicians who made up the symphony were primarily housed in Mountain Lake Park, where they would often rehearse together and socialize with local residents.
The festival continued for over a decade and featured two weeks of chamber and orchestral music for their audiences. The documentary shows how a passion for fine music seamlessly blends with the tranquility found in the mountains.
This year’s Victorian Chautauqua program schedule has been moved intact to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic. It was scheduled for July 11 and 12 with fundraisers planned for June 13 and a kickoff dinner on July 10. The planning committee unanimously agreed to move the event due to so much uncertainty in holding a safe large gathering.
The 2021 annual event will feature historical character portrayals, lectures, children’s programming, a Ford Model T exhibit, tintype photographs, live music, Victorian home tours, artisans and food.
The planning committee is also excited that a new park and vintage-style town trolley will be added to the visitor experience next year. The annual event will take place over the weekend that follows the Fourth of July celebration. “The Legacy “episode will still premiere in the absence of this year’s event.
“The Legacy” is available for free online by visiting VC-MLP.com/history. While online, guest are asked to join the Victorian Chautauqua mailing list to receive future event and programming updates.