The glistening waters of Schumaker Pond welcome visitors to The Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, named after Stephen and Lemuel Ward, two carvers who transformed the art of decoy crafting. The collection of wood-carved birds served not only as hunting tools, but later, as artistic objects that illustrated the beauty of wildfowl from around the world.
Size: 12,000 square feet of exhibition space with more than 2,000 objects in its permanent collection
Eye Catcher: The sounds of ducks echo in The Decoy in Time Gallery a reconstructed wetland that features decoys and hunting gear, illustrating the decoy's history starting with its use by Native American tribes
Permanent Mainstay: As their day job was cutting hair, The Ward Brothers Workshop is a reproduction of their barbershop studio and displays their original carvings
Don't Miss: For decades, the museum foundation has hosted a decoy carving championship, gathering artists from the world over. The World Championship Gallery features many of the winning decoys and includes carvings of eagles, owls, and swans, among others.
Past Exhibits: Not only hunters use decoys; conservationists do as well, to try to attract birds to safe areas. Birds of a Feather: Conservation Decoys displayed many of these decoys.
Special Programs: On the grounds around the museum, patrons can see wildlife in its natural habitat at the Ward Museum Living Classroom and during a walk through the nature trails.
From the Press: "Some [objects] are workmanlike, displayed so the visitor can see how the wood was carved. Others, like an arctic tern and gyrfalcon carved out of walnut and encased in its own glass cube, are spectacular works of art." ? Bay Journal "Like decoy carving itself . . . the Ward Museum has grown to be a significant purveyor of the artistic, natural, and cultural legacy of this art form." ? NEA Arts Magazine
The Lewes Historical Society's outdoor craft fair and fundraiser arrays more than 80 artisans from the mid-Atlantic region in front of a backdrop of historical structures. Visitors admire homespun jewelry, cozy up to quilts, and marvel at sculptures whittled from blocks of wood or slightly larger sculptures. Vibrant stained glass casts dazzling light, while an array of hand-thrown pottery quivers in fear of wayward elbows and undercover bulls. Picturesque cherry trees shade a cluster of picnic tables, ideal for listening to the festival's lineup of live music and noshing on the spread of baked goods and other refreshments for sale.