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The St. Clement’s Island Museum, 38370 Point Breeze Road, Colton's Point will present its 27th annual Christmas Doll & Train Exhibit Dec. 1 for a month-long exhibition. The museum will come alive with antique and collectible dolls, toys and working miniature trains in a holiday setting to delight children from 1 to 101.

Started in 1985 by former museum director Mike Humphries, the exhibit was conceived to boost museum visitation at a time when visitation was low. He conferred with a local doll collector, Trish Guy also a member of the Southern Maryland Doll Club who along with members of the club were able to present the very first Christmas Doll & Train exhibit. In the years that followed, the Southern Maryland and Black-eyed Susan Doll Clubs have been the backbone of the exhibit creating themes and using their doll collections to make every year different and attractive.

Other private collectors of dolls and trains also participate each year and share their treasured collections with wide-eyed approval of holiday visitors. This exhibit has now become a holiday tradition for many as those who visited in years past now bring their own children or grandchildren.

The theme for this year celebrates “Life in the Good Old Days,” a time before the internet, cell phones and video games. Visitors will learn or remember vintage dolls and toys of the early 20th century, homemade toys and wintertime on St. Clement’s Island. Children will be able to enjoy a hands-on activity and make their own Christmas ornament.

Visitors will also enjoy browsing through the Crab Claw Museum Store which features a myriad of unique gifts, children’s books and toys, clothing, jewelry, Maryland flags, lighthouses, souvenirs and even crab pot Christmas trees. All gift shop proceeds benefit museum programs, projects and exhibits. Become a museum member and receive a 10 percent discount any time throughout the year.

The exhibit will be open Wednesday through Sunday noon to 4 p.m. from Dec. 1 to Dec. 21. The extended holiday schedule will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 22 to Dec. 31. Closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Admission is $3 per adult, $2 for seniors and military, $1.50 for children 6 to 18 and kids 5 and younger are admitted free. The museum will present an open house Dec. 8 and admission is free for everyone.

Call 301-769-2222 or go to www.stmarysmd.com/recreate/museums.

Something Old, Something New In Kolster’s Photographs at CSM

Photographs by artist Michael Kolster are on display through Dec. 15 in the College of Southern Maryland’s Tony Hungerford Memorial Art Gallery located in the Fine Arts Center on the La Plata campus at 8730 Mitchell Road.

Kolster, an associate professor of art at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, shared insight to his work during a gallery talk with students Nov. 14 where he said that this project was “one of the most satisfying projects” he has worked on.

The collection began when he started photographing the Androscoggin River outside of his new home and thought it beautiful. After speaking with long-time residents regarding his impression of the river, he realized they did not share his sentiments on its appeal, and it was at this time that he conducted research to learn more about its history, which led to the scope of the collection.

Forty years prior to the present day, the river was contaminated from a nearby paper factory, covered by foam with no signs of life, not even microorganisms. It was at this time that the Clean Water Act was passed and the river began its transformation into its current, rejuvenated state.

Kolster decided to use a wet-plate collodion process, one of photography’s earliest, to document his work at the river. This process included bringing with him to the river a camera, glass plate holders, a dark box, chemistry, a silver nitrate bath and 15 gallons of water each time he wanted to produce photographs. Although the process can be long and arduous, Kolster loves what can be produced from it and finds the time invested to be well worth the end result.

The gallery is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. Go to www.csmd.edu/Arts.

Old political memorablia will be on display at Piney Point Lighthouse and Museum

The Piney Point Lighthouse, Museum and Historic Park in Piney Point at 44720 Lighthouse Road will present a holiday exhibit set up in the museum and the lighthouse keeper’s quarters, a historic building not normally open to the public. The exhibit theme complements the 2012 Presidential election year with an extensive exhibit of political memorabilia.

Private and personal collections of local citizens are shared in a holiday atmosphere.

Museum staff and volunteers will offer tours of the exhibit, museum, 1836 lighthouse and Potomac River Maritime exhibit filled with historic wooden boats. The lighthouse tower will be available for a climb to the top.

The Lighthouse Lens Museum Store will be open with an array of unique gifts, lighthouse and nautical items, jewelry, clothing, home décor and children’s items. Don’t miss the new crab pot Christmas trees. Museum gift memberships are the perfect gift for “the one who has everything” and provide a 10 percent discount on museum store items.

The museum and holiday exhibit will be open from noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 1 to Dec. 21. The extended holiday schedule is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 22 to Dec. 31. Closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Admission is $3 per adult, $2 for senior citizens and military personnel, $1.50 for children 6 to 18, and free for kids 5 and younger.

The museum’s Christmas Open House will be from 12 noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 9. Admission is free. Kids should sign up for a boy and girl’s bike giveaway donated by the Tall Timbers Optimist Club. Free refreshments and children’s holiday activity inside the museum.

Call 301-994-1471 or go to www.stmarysmd.com/recreate/museums.