There is no place like the Eastern Shore for the holidays. From Christmas parades and festivals to Winterfest of Lights and tree lightings, our hearts fill with joy as we bundle up and spend quality time with our loved ones while continuing our annual holiday traditions. But each year you may find yourself asking, what about adding new and exciting traditions to your holiday festivities? Whelp, you’ve come to the right place. ShoreBread has discovered that the Eastern Shore has more to offer for the holiday season than many of us Eastern Shore natives are aware of.

One of our most cherished discoveries lies within the Eastern Shore Ballet Theatre, a non-profit ballet company. The ESBT is currently getting ready for their 27th Annual “Nutcracker” production! Since 1991, ESBT has successfully performed this full-length holiday classic which has gained the company statewide recognition.

After visiting the ESBT dancers at their home, the Salisbury Dance Academy, we were shocked to find out that this performance relies tremendously on the community. From the stage, to costumes, to teachers, this Nutcracker performance is built on an all-volunteer base. EBST is fortunate that their previous dancers come back from professional careers to help guide and teach the future generation of Nutcracker dancers.

What we found most unique about ESBT’s Nutcracker production is that it allows the dancers to express themselves; it’s not about competing or winning a trophy. These dancers are so committed to dancing that they come from local studios where they dance during the week then spend their weekend rehearsing for the Nutcracker. Their goal is to produce a creative and artistic production for families to enjoy during the holidays.

Each year, ESBT holds auditions in early September for the Nutcracker production. These auditions are open to all dancers that have a background in ballet. Once dancers are selected (roughly 90), rehearsals begin mid-September on Saturdays and Sundays, leading up until the performance which is always the first weekend of December.

This year the Nutcracker will show on December 1st from 9:30-11:30AM, 2nd from 7-9PM and 3rd from 2-4PM at Wicomico High School. Reserve your seat today, visit:, tickets are only $15 each ($10 if you’re a senior citizen or student!).