Just over ten years ago, Berlin, MD was transformed into the fictitious town of Hale, MD for the major motion picture, Runaway Bride. Producers of the film starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere chose the name Hale for their movie’s town, to give an honorary nod to Berlin’s historical roots.

Berlin was once home to Harrisons’ Nurseries. At its peak, the company was the largest grower of fruit and shade trees in the world. It provided the principal industry for the town of Berlin. Hundreds of train carloads full of fresh produce were shipped all over the country, annually. The orchards providing the produce included many types of trees, including several types of peaches. One of the most favored types, the Hale, was said to be named after one of the Harrison sons, G. Hale.

This weekend peaches will again take center stage at the 4th Annual Peach Festival, to be held on the grounds of the Taylor House Museum in Berlin, MD.  The peach festival pays homage to a rich part of Berlin’s past. The events and activities all honor ways of life in a simpler time, when people truly lived off of the land, and made things by hand. Artisans will demonstrate and sell their goods including: basket making, quilting, spinning & weaving, decoy carving, and beekeeping. Cut flowers and wreathes will be available for purchase as will cookbooks filled with the flavor of local recipes, honey, homemade jams and preserves, and commemorative items.

A full festival schedule of old-fashioned fun includes: children “shaking their booties” to make ice cream, Joel Todd on bagpipes, Frank Nanna and 3 Sheets musical performances, and many kid-friendly events. The little ones will delight in pony rides, peach-themed tattoos, a cupcake walk, and Cascading Carlos, a juggler.

The interactive festival will also feature three different peach pie eating contests—one for kids, one for adults, and one for local celebrities. A pie-baking contest means bragging rights for the winner. (Pre-registration is required and is limited to 13 participants.)

The history of Berlin, MD, the museums of Worcester County, and Harrisons’ Nurseries will be well represented with memorabilia and materials. Guided tours of the Taylor House Museum are available throughout the day. And of course, the peach will be showcased in all of its delicious glory as the key ingredient in dumplings, ice cream, and other baked goods.

Volunteers are needed. Please contact the Taylor House Museum if you would like to assist. 410.641.1019

If You Go:

  • The 4th Annual Peach Festival
  • Held on the grounds of the Taylor House Museum, Main Street, Berlin, MD
  • Saturday August 4th (Rain date is Sunday, August 5th)
  • 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Visit the Taylor House Museum website for additional information.

Photo Credit: The Taylor House Museum