Mountains and Museums, Saturday, May 27, 2023

The scenic beauty of our mountains and valleys provides the backdrop for the world of discovery in the towns and their Museums in Garrett County.  Enjoy the natural wonders of the mountains as you drive through the County and experience the culture, history and story of scenic Mountain Maryland Gateway to the West Heritage Area.

All seven of the county’s museums will be open during Memorial Day weekend for the Mountains and Museum event, on Saturday, May 27, 2023.  The Oakland Museums will be open on Friday and Saturday, May 26-27,2023, 11-4 and Sunday, May 28, 2023, 12-3.  All directions begin at the Garrett County Visitor Center, 15 Visitors Center Drive, McHenry, MD 21541, 301-387-5238.

Grantsville: Located 20 miles from the Visitors Center (take Route 219 north to Alternate Route 40 east). The Grantsville Community Museum is the home of Leo Beachy’s photography and the B-52 crash of 1964. Enjoy the culture and history specific to this community through their photos and artifacts.  Stroll down Main Street (old Route 40) and enjoy a spectacular meal at the Casselman Inn and Restaurant (est.1842).   A short drive east will bring you to the Casselman Bridge State Park, Spruce Forest Artisan Village, Stanton’s Mill and Penn Alps Restaurant and Gift Shop where one can explore, discover, shop, and dine. The Grantsville Community Museum hours are Friday and Saturday, 1-4 pm, 301-895-5454.

Friendsville: Located 17 miles NW from the Visitors Center (take Route 219 north to Route 42 north/west). The Friend Family Association Museum is home not only to the history and culture of the town, but it is the genealogy library for the Friend family, which can boast 30,000 plus members from around the world.  While visiting the “Friendliest” town in America, enjoy a walk on the Kendall Trail along the Youghiogheny Wild River Natural Environmental Area.  Stroll through the oldest settlement in Garrett County (est.1763) ending with a charming meal at the Friendsville Public House. The Friend Family Association Museum hours are Saturday, 11-4 pm, 301-746-4690.

Oakland-Historic Town Center: Located 11 miles from the Visitors Center take Route 219 south, at the 2nd light take a right onto Center Street, with a left onto 2nd Street. Parking is available in the Town parking area at 2nd Street and the RR tracks) The Town of Oakland boasts three museums and a historic walking tour along Downtown. Step back in time as you travel from the B&O Railroad Museum, the Garrett County Historical Society Museum of History and the Museum of Transportation. Each Museum displays the unique culture and defined history of the area.   As one travels through the Oakland Heritage area, they can enjoy the many retail shops and eateries. Explore, discover, shop, dine, and relax. GCHS hours are 11-4 Tuesday-Saturday with extended hours for this event on Sunday from 11-4,301-334-3226.  The B&O RR Museum hours are 10-3, Friday-Sunday, 301-334-3204

Mtn. Lake Park: Currently under renovation, the Re-opening will be announced on their website:

Kitzmiller: Located 18 miles from the Visitors Center (take Route 219 south to Route 135 east, to Route 38 south, a right onto Main Street, with a left onto 4th). The Kitzmiller Coal Heritage Museum is located in a former church.  Situated on the banks of the North Branch of the Potomac River, Kitzmiller was once a thriving coal town.  The Museum provides a glimpse into the life of a coal miner and his family, and the coal mining community of Kitzmiller well as the towns of  Vindex,Shaw,Chaffee and other coal mining towns that are now long gone.  Talk a walk along the Kitzmiller River Walk, enjoy the Town Park, Botanical Garden, and Fitness Trail.  The Coal Bucket Restaurant at the corner of Rt. 38 and Main Street will provide the perfect refreshment after a tour of the town nestled between the mountains, river, and railroads. The Museum will be open Saturday from 11-4 pm,301-453-3449.

For local history and heritage information visit the Mountain Maryland Gateway to the West Heritage Area website: