Published On: Sat, May 27th, 2017

Day Trip to Kent Island for Memorial Day Weekend

For Memorial Day, we wanted to get out of town, but nothing more than a day trip.  So, we headed out to Kent Island just on the other side of the Bay Bridge.  Being just a day trip, and not able to leave early because of Najwa’s swimming lessons, we figured we’d just grab a bite to eat and visit the Heritage Center, the only other something-to-do I could find.

Being that we left in the afternoon, the traffic was light — for a holiday. Or maybe it was the possible rain showers keeping people from venturing out this weekend. We made it in just under an hour, and looked for a restaurant with a view. Nduku loves the water, so we went to the only one we could find that sits right on the Chesapeake Bay — Hemingway’s Restaurant.

Hemingway's - Kent Island
Hemingway's - Kent Island
The view of the Bay Bridge from Hemingway's - Kent Island
View of the Bay Bridge from Hemingway’s Restaurant.
Hemingway's - Kent Island

Behind the restaurant is a pier that goes out a bit into the bay.  Great view of the Chesapeake Bay and of the Bay Bridge that spans it.  Najwa, fresh out her swimming lesson that morning, wanted some photos of her swimming in the bay.  Not that she was planning on jumping in the water.  I had to take the photos and make sure I didn’t get the pier in the shots.

Najwa at Hemingway's - Kent Island
Najwa at Hemingway's - Kent Island

The food was good.  I’m not a seafood guy, but I did tear up my catfish sandwich.  Najwa even enjoyed the calamari, making sure we didn’t explain exactly what it is.  The rain held off.  The people were friendly.  A good start to the trip.

Najwa at Hemingway's - Kent Island

The island isn’t that big.  And there’s not much to do there unless you want to hop on a charter boat and go fishing.  It looks to primarily be a residential heavy island.  There was a historic downtown Stevensville, though I think we drove through it in no more than two minutes.  We did see a few old buildings.

We did drive around though, heading to the northern point of the island.  on Google Maps, there’s something called Love Point.  On the way there was this one amazing home that I wanted to visit, but it was residential and I didn’t want to spook the people who lived there.  We continued to head north, to the very end, when we realized Love Point must be the name of the neighborhood.  As we made it to he very tip, we found ourselves on a tiny road that only led to more homes.  We were trespassing.  We made a quick u-turn, not wanting to disturb the residents, and as we were leaving, there was another car heading north to the tip, with DC plates, the passenger obviously looking at GPS, probably wondering, like us, where the hell was Love Point.

As we passed people, though, they waved.  Good people.  But it was time to head to the Chesapeake Heritage & Visitor Center.

Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island

It’s not a very big visitor center, but it does tell a history of the people who settled the island.  Hundreds of photos of how people lived, the way they grew their food, how important the bay was and is to their lifestyles.  We didn’t have much time, not realizing we got there close to their closing time.  But they had some interesting stories to tell about the people.

The most popular attraction, though, is of the two aquatic animals near the back.  There’s a terrapin and some horseshoe crabs.

Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island

At first we didn’t see the horseshoe crabs.  They were burrowed in the sand, but one of the staff members came back there, roused them up, fed them and the terrapin, and told us a bit about the animals.  How the horseshoe crabs are living fossils.  How it’s not uncommon to see a bunch of terrapins crossing the roads.  She was really helpful; everyone there was super nice.

Part of the center was a watch tower that you could climb up and get a really great panoramic view of the bay.

Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island
Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island

While we were up on the tower, the center closed.  But before we headed out, I had to go to the bathroom.  There’s a port-a-potty there, and I only took this picture because it’s the best slogan ever, for a port-a-potty anyway.

Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center - Kent Island

Afterwards, we headed out to Nduku’s highlight of the entire trip [I’m exaggerating. I think]. Just a few miles down the road, on the mainland, there’s an outlet mall. And that’s where we spent the rest of our time before heading home.

A good trip.

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About the Author

David Gaines

- David Gaines is a Washington, DC, resident transplanted from North Carolina whose dream career was a newspaper writer but settled for the recruiting industry and simply blogging about whatever thoughts crosses his mind.



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