Over 40 Things to Do Around Delaware This April
From Winterthur's "Costuming the Crown" exhibit to annual festivals and celebrations, here are this month's can't-miss events.
Winterthur's "Costuming the Crown" exhibit is on display until January 2020.//Photos Courtesy of Winterthur, Jim Schneck
Week of April 1-7
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show
4/2 • Wilmington
Clearly the best day for the Very Hungry Caterpillar is Saturday, when he got to eat all that chocolate cake. The worst day? Sunday, when he ate through one big green leaf. Yuck. If you love the story, you’ll devour this show—the beloved Eric Carle book comes to vibrant life at The Grand, with the help of 75 loveable puppets. Bonus: Carle’s other famous friends—like Brown Bear and the Very Lonely Firefly—stop in to play too. Perfect for your pre-K to first-grade kiddos, stop in at 9:30 a.m. or noon.
Delaware Sports Museum and Hall of Fame
4/4 • Wilmington
In tandem with the opening of the Blue Rocks 2019 season, the Delaware Sports Museum and Hall of Fame is ready and waiting for you. Come pay tribute to the state’s most famous sports heroes.
An Evening with David Sedaris
4/4 • Wilmington
Sedaris, a national treasure, brings his sardonic wit, political and cultural criticism, and—in his own brilliant, weird way—a romantic heart to the stage at The Grand. Expect to laugh so hard it hurts.
4/5-4/7 • Dewey
The Greyhounds run the beach for one weekend at the best greyhound gathering. Great fun abounds for humans and hounds.
Lewes Tulip Celebration
4/5-4/14 • Lewes
Celebrate Lewes’ Dutch heritage with various activities at sites throughout town.
Robert Bruce Weston
4/5-4/26 • Wilmington
The Mezzanine Gallery hosts Milton-based wood craftsman Robert Bruce Weston, who spent 30 years as a cabinetmaker and fell in love with the character of different wood. That love inspires his unique work, which he calls wood veneer art.
4/5-4/27 • Greenville
Right in time for spring, The Station Gallery hosts “Ephemeral” with paintings by Frank DePietro.
Diamond State Skate Fest & 5k
4/6 • Wilmington
No matter how you roll, this event at Bellevue State Park has something for you. Sponsored by the bodacious Diamond State Roller Derby—the state’s first co-ed, skater-owned and operated Women’s Flat Track Derby Association league—there will be a 5K run/walk, a 5K skate, and a half- and full-marathon skate. Add food, drinks, games and all-around family fun, and we think you will wheel-y want to be there. Proceeds benefit the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, Serviam Girls Academy and Derby Without Borders.
Delaware Resorts Spring Home Expo
4/6-4/7 • Lewes
Cape Henlopen High School hosts 80+ home-related products and services at the 22nd annual Delaware Resorts Spring Home Expo. Looking for some fresh decorating tips? Get here.
Walk for Autism
4/6, 4/13 • Lewes and Wilmington
You’ve got a Delaware double shot this spring: two chances to lace up to raise funds for Autism Delaware. Join the fun April 6 in Lewes or April 13 in Wilmington. Both walks start at 11 a.m.
First Sundays for Families
4/7 • Chadds Ford
The first Sunday of the month is always devoted to families at the Brandywine River Museum of Art. This month, check out “Circle of Friends,” a day of photobooth fun, art-making, storytelling and an artistic twist on hide-and-seek. The fun starts at 11 a.m.
Eggstravaganza Breakfast & Egg Hunt
4/7, 4/14 • Wilmington
You’ve got two chances to hop on in to the Delaware Museum of Natural History for a pancake breakfast for your whole crew, plus a (weather-dependent) hunt for eggs filled with sweet treats in the museum’s backyard. Tour the museum, go animal in the nature nook and take home a themed craft. With seatings at 9, 9:45 and 10:30 a.m., there’ll be plenty of pancakes to stack.
courtesy of the delaware art museum
Thru. 8/4 • Wilmington
As part of its new Distinguished Artist Series, the Delaware Art Museum celebrates two influential local artists—Edward Loper Sr. and his son, Edward Loper Jr. “The Loper Tradition” will be the first comprehensive museum exhibition to showcase the Lopers’ paintings and their continued impact on this region. The exhibition will feature more than 30 paintings assembled from the museum’s collection, private individuals and other public institutions. Programming associated with the exhibit will include two films about the Lopers that were produced by local filmmakers. “The community and my family are very excited that this exhibition is taking place. It’s long overdue,” says Jamie Loper, son of Edward Loper Jr. “Spending the last two years really learning about my father’s and grandfather’s art has awakened a hopefulness in me... We can look at a broken down house and might feel sad or depressed. But they can take these subjects and scenes and reintroduce them to us in celebration so that they can be seen as beautiful.”
Week of April 8-14
City Restaurant Week
4/8-4/13 • Wilmington
You wanna talk about a Who’s Who list of Wilmington restaurants? Check this out: 8th & Union Kitchen, Columbus Inn, Ernest & Scott Taproom, La Fia, Piccolina Toscana and more have joined forces to throw you one heck of a palate party. Can you say #squadgoals? You’ll want to spend a few days in downtown Wilmington this week to take advantage of two-course lunches for $15 and three-course dinners for $35. Don’t worry—it’ll be nice enough outside to run off the calories later. Or not.
4/9 • Newark
The University of Delaware Department of Music presents Serafin String Quartet violinist Kate Ransom and cellist Lawrence Stomberg, with UD alum Augustine Mercante, countertenor, and special guest Victor Santiago Asuncion, piano, for an evening performance at Gore Recital Hall that’ll make you say oui.
Coastal Delaware Running Festival
4/12-4/14 • Rehoboth Beach
A running festival sponsored by Grotto Pizza? We’re in. This weekend of all-things running includes multiple distances—marathon, half-marathon, 9K and 5K—that all start and finish on the iconic Rehoboth Beach boardwalk. How’s that view for inspo? Come for the running, stay for the legendary after-party. We can’t think of a better way to spend an early spring weekend.
The Sleeping Beauty
4/12-4/14 • Wilmington
First State Ballet Theatre presents the sleepy story of beloved Princess Aurora at The Baby Grand. For the early-to-bed, try a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday; on Friday and Saturday, the dance is on pointe at 7 p.m.
Meals on Wheels Delaware Weekend Fete
4/13-4/14 • Wilmington
It’s hard to beat this back-to-back party. First up is the Cellar Masters’ Wine Auction & Dinner at Wilmington Country Club: fine wine, four-course dinner, entertainment and a world-class live auction. Finish your delicious double-dip on Sunday with the Celebrity Chefs’ Brunch, an indulgent morning of gourmet creations at the DuPont Country Club. If there were a Brunch Olympics, you would gold medal here. Trust us. We suggest a babysitter all weekend.
4/14 • Wilmington
This event at Harry’s Savoy Grill features a New Orleans-style brunch, Bloody Mary and mimosa bars, the Red Alert Band, live and silent auctions, raffles and an international coffee station, all to benefit Delaware Hospice.
Week of April 15-21
4/17-5/12 • Wilmington
This delightful and award-winning adaptation of “The Ugly Duckling” is a heartwarming celebration of what makes us special. Since it first hatched in 1993, “Honk!” has winged its way around the world in more than 8,000 productions and many different languages. Lucky you, now it’s landing in Wilmington. See it at the Delaware Theatre Company.
Dining Out for Life
4/18 • Wilmington
Eat good food. Do a good thing. On this national day of giving, one-third of all food sales at participating restaurants will benefit AIDS Delaware.
One Night of Queen
4/18 • Wilmington
Rami Malek not do it for you in “Bohemian Rhapsody?” Give Gary Mullen & The Works a try. Mullen, who won a UK-based reality talent series with his impressive Freddy Mercury act, brings his crazy accurate Queen concert experience to Wilmington. See it at The Grand.
Delaware Afro-American Sports Hall of Fame Banquet
4/20 • Dover
The Delaware Afro-American Sports Hall of Fame will hold its annual banquet induction ceremony at 6 p.m., at the Modern Maturity Center 1121 Forest Ave., Dover. Brenda Jarmon will be the Mistress of Ceremonies and musician Tony Smith will provide entertainment. Tickets will not be sold at the door.
Party for the Planet
4/20 • Wilmington
What can you do to help save species? Join the Brandywine Zoo for its annual Party for the Planet to learn what you can do to make every day Earth Day. Stop by a learning station, talk with a volunteer and hang out with live animals. Go wild at 10 a.m.
Week of April 22-28
Great Dames 10th Anniversary Celebration
4/24 • Hockessin
Discover your Great Dameness at the organization’s big 10-year anniversary gala. The agenda for the evening? Celebrating women. We can get behind that. Hockessin Memorial Hall hosts an evening of dancing, food and, of course, wine. The best part, though? All proceeds go to the Great Dames Foundation to provide scholarships and seed grants to women and girls doing big things in our communities.
4/25-5/12 • Newark
If you saw Denzel Washington and Viola Davis in the Hollywood film adaptation of “Fences” and were affected by all the feels, imagine seeing it the way it was originally written: in a small, minimal room, with real people on the stage. The UD Resident Ensemble Players present the Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning masterpiece about broken dreams, bitter disappointments and coming to terms with the life in front of you.
Rare Plant Auction
4/27 • Kennett Square
Don’t get caught up in the fact that this is a party … for plants. That might sound boring, but we can tell you from experience this party is anything but. You will pot it like it’s hot at this distinctive event at Longwood Gardens that benefits the Delaware Center for Horticulture’s Community Greening Program. Not only will you enjoy killer fashion from partygoers, entrance to the gardens for the day, cocktails and dinner, this year Longwood Gardens is inviting party guests to a private, after-hours main fountain show—best goodie bag ever.
True Grit Gala
4/27 • Georgetown
This Western-themed gala event doesn’t ask much of you: Just bring your boots, your hats and your boot-scootin’ boogie. The soiree at True Grit Stables in Georgetown benefits mental health services in Sussex County.
Ocean to Bay Bike Tour
4/27 • Bethany Beach
Get those wheels spinning and join more than 2,500 cyclists for a ride through the beaches, bays and beyond—you can’t beat the view. The 30- 50-, 62- and 100-mile routes begin and end in Bethany Beach. Go for the century—it’s flat!
4/27 • Newark
It’s a day of tours, exhibits, demos, animals, kids’ activities, music and food on the grounds of University of Delaware’s Townsend Hall. The fun on the farm starts at 10 a.m.
The Doo Wop Project
4/27 • Wilmington
Enjoy a night filled with harmonies and classic ’60s hits from the likes of Dion and the Belmonts to Thurston Harris to The Capris, all the way to doo-wop-inspired renditions of contemporary songs from Amy Winehouse and Jason Mraz. Come for the music, stay for the show within the concert, which traces the evolution of doo-wop from the classic street corner crew singing tight harmonies to the genre’s impact on today’s biggest pop hits. The Playhouse hosts.
Makerfest at Hagley
4/27 • Wilmington
Calling all tinkerers, tech geeks, crafters, educators, artists and more—if you’re a maker, you’ll want to be at MakerFest. Part science fair, part community fair and part something entirely new, MakerFest is an all-ages gathering for anyone who has a bent for creating. All the snaps to science. The day of innovative disruption starts at 11 a.m.
4/27-4/28, 5/2-5/4 • Wilmington
If there’s one thing the world needs right now, it’s an inspiring, across-the-aisle tale of true friendship, kinda like the one the Notorious RBG and the late Antonin Scalia nurtured. The black-robed besties bonded over opera, and now you can too—so meta—with “Scalia/Ginsburg.” Their deep philosophical opposition had nothin’ on their BFF game. Also playing: “Trial by Jury,” Gilbert & Sullivan’s beloved courtroom drama, and “Dead Man Walking,” the modern masterpiece about a death-row inmate. New to opera? It’s not the stuffy, monocle’d art form you think it is. Trust us. The shows are staged at The Grand, plus enjoy a special evening of song with the festival’s leading ladies at the OperaDelaware Studios.
Photos Courtesy of Winterthur, Jim Schneck
Costuming the Crown
Thru. 1/5/20 • Wilmington
If there is one thing you do between now and January 2020—please don’t tell us you don’t have the time—get to Winterthur for its outstanding display of luxurious threads from the beloved Netflix series “The Crown.” (Speaking of which, if you haven’t binged this yet, what are you waiting for, an actual royal invitation?) From the regal gold of Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation gown (pictured above), to Princess Margaret’s sophisticated wedding dress (spoiler alert: It doesn’t end well), to all the tiaras you can shake a teapot at, we are clutching all the pearls over this exhibit, which will feature more than 40 iconic costumes from the Emmy Award-winning show. Not included in the price of admission: instructions on an epic Princess Margaret bender. You can’t buy that talent.
4/30 • Wilmington
Before she was a household name, Dr. Jane Goodall—humanitarian, conservationist, animal activist—was a little girl who loved going on adventures with her beloved stuffed chimpanzee, Jubilee. This special event, a World Premiere Kennedy Center Commission (read: big deal), kicks off at The Playhouse before it hits the country on tour. With anecdotes taken directly from Goodall’s autobiography, this new musical about friendship, curiosity and the miracle of nature speaks to kids in a language they can understand. Best suited for grades 1 through 5, see it at 9:30 a.m. or noon.
Ending this month
Time Stilled, My Hair Narrative
Thru. 4/28 • Wilmington
Artist Tia Santana explores the mummification process of hair extensions worn by her in this exhibit that questions adornment in the traditional practices of black culture. See it in Wilmington at The Delaware Contemporary.
Thru. 4/30 • Ocean View
What time is it? Ask the local artists at the Gallery One monthly group show.
Throughout the month
The Adventures of Princess Truheart
4/6-4/7, 4/13-4/14, 4/27-4/28 • Wilmington
Move over Cinderella and Snow White, there’s a true princess in town. Feisty Tru is the girl at the center of this original production, which is part adventure, part princess quest, and all heart. On a journey to meet the mysterious Sorceress and become a legit princess, Tru faces trials and tribulations—and runs into friends Snow White and Cinderella too. See it at the Delaware Children’s Theatre—all shows begin at 2 p.m.
Thru. 5/12 • Wilmington
Are you a fan of rap music? Roller coasters? Half-pipes? Every one of these things requires design, and the backbone of thoughtful design is math. Yes—that means you can thank math for the dope beat of your favorite Drake song or for the speed at which Shaun White navigates a vertical ramp. If you like your math like you like your veggies—covered in bacon, say, or otherwise cleverly disguised—then this exhibit at the Delaware Museum of Natural History is for you.
Fairy Tales to Nursery Rhymes: The Droller Collection of Picture Book Art
Thru. 5/12 • Wilmington
From the Brothers Grimm and Mother Goose to Dinosaur Bob and Bumble-Ardy, engaging stories and captivating images come alive in the art of picture books at the Delaware Art Museum. Climb into the magical world of children’s literature through this stunning collection of more than 100 original and imaginative illustrations.
Collecting as Activism: African American Art and the Legacy of Paul R. Jones
Thru. 5/17 • Newark
A collector and philanthropist, Paul R. Jones (1928-2010) began collecting art in the 1960s, focusing on acquiring works by African-American and African diaspora artists—artists, at the time, who were often marginalized and excluded from major museum collections. Through artworks from his collection, the exhibition invites visitors to ask questions about diversity, inclusion and visibility in art museums, as well as the role of collectors in supporting underrepresented artists. See it at the University of Delaware’s Mechanical Hall Gallery.
American Beauty: Highlights From the Richard M. Scaife Bequest
Thru. 5/27 • Chadds Ford
A special collabo between the Brandywine River Museum of Art and The Westmoreland Museum of American Art, this exhibition shares the finest works from the Richard M. Scaife Bequest. A longtime trustee of the Brandywine Conservancy & Museum of Art—as well as a newspaper publisher, art collector and philanthropist—Scaife left a major part of his extensive art collection to both museums following his death in 2014. This exhibition includes 50 paintings that celebrate Scaife’s passion for the rich traditions of American art.
Follies: Architectural Whimsy in the Garden
Thru. 1/5/20 • Wilmington
There is no excuse not to step into the imaginative and entertaining world of garden follies at Winterthur. Explore a fantastic display of contemporary and historic architectural features—from a Gothic-inspired tower to American summerhouses to a faerie cottage and more—all set within the majestic beauty of Henry Francis du Pont’s 60-acre garden. This irresistible garden exhibition, featuring 13 vignettes, offers a one-of-a-kind outdoor experience with a twist of fancy fun.