July 12, 2015

Adventures in Summer Festivaling: Old Fashioned Ice Cream Festival

With the rain the East Coast has been getting this season, it almost feels like we’re honorary Seattlites. Flash flooding and 60 mph winds have been de rigor for the 2015 beach season. It certainly rained on my parade Saturday. The downpour kept me at bay from the Old Fashioned Ice Cream Festival at Rockwood Park. For those who haven’t heard of it, the Old Fashioned Ice Cream Festival is one of northern Delaware’s biggest fests. It even made The Food Network, and USA Today donned it one of the “top 10 food fests.”  However, Sunday the clouds parted and the sun shone down upon all of us who wanted to shop local wares and stuff our faces with gourmet treats. As someone who goes to great efforts to put on shows and maintain an internet presence for my own art, I understand how hard small businesses and artisans work. While I was enjoying the rare beauty of the day, I took the time to talk to some of the artisans.
Aurora Lamps- Makers of gorgeous geometric lanterns. At first glance, it seems like these are intricate paper lanterns, but in fact they’re made of recycled polycarbonate plastic. The way the light shines through the multicolored lanterns is beautiful. Visit them at www.corryscoolstuff.com.

Emkay Bead Designs- The lovely jewelry maker at Emkay Bead Designs featured rows and rows of adorable jewelry ranging from kitschy to fashionable. It even had geek friendly pieces. I snagged a pair of Harry Potter Deathly Hallows themed earrings! She doesn’t appear to have a website, but you can send email inquiries to Myrna622@comcast.net.

Eric W. Zippe Imagemaker- Eric is a local Wilmington, Delaware art photographer who specializes in fine art and wooden prints. His work ranges from delicate black and white shots of outstretched tree branches to Vaudevillian images of women and casinos. You can find his work at www.shop.ezippe.com.


Elk Creek Maple Syrup- Hailing from Westford, New York, owner Paula Hilyer makes divine maple products ranging from maple candy, maple butter, and of course maple syrup. One taste of this stuff and you’ll never want to go back to the corn syrup laden sludge from the grocery store. I almost forgot how much dimensionality real maple syrup had until I tried this. Paula and her husband are a sweet couple that clearly love their craft. Visit them at www.elkcreekmaplesyrup.com.

Coates’ Hotter Than Hell- Owner Rob Coates is an affable hot sauce maker from Wilmington, Delaware. Ranging from mild to spicy, each sauce certainly has kick. This company’s motto is “feel the heat, savor the flavor,” with an emphasis on enhancing food with heat rather than masking it. I picked up a bottle of their medium heat sauce, En Fuego Habanero, whose ingredients include habanero and cayenne peppers. Check out their sauces at www.facebook.com/hotterthanhellsauce.

Until next time, this is your kindly local art scene reporter, Kirsten Ashley


  1. I must check out those lamps. One may have a home here.

  2. I enjoyed your tour of the festival!

    1. Thank you! I'm glad I could give a spotlight to the artisans. I know I've been to many events on the other side of the table.