March 30, 2023
Annapolis, US 43 F

Maryland Native Sharing Stories of Marylanders on Makers of the USA

Back in June of 2020, Kristan Vermeulen started a podcast called Makers of the USA which now has over 20K downloads and over 9K social media followers. She was on Good Morning America and on FOX Business News on Mornings with Maria to talk about how she pivoted her full-time business as a publicist to give back to small businesses and makers that were originally her clientele in sharing their stories through a media outlet that didn’t exist at the time. This storytelling project has continued to grow as she has over 30 episodes that tell stories about makers of all sorts from ax makers to dog mushers to basket weavers and much more.

The Ellicott City Native and former Annapolis resident is currently rolling out the Maryland series which includes all different types of makers.

Pete Ross takes gourds and turns them into banjos and fiddles. The banjo has a history in Baltimore and Pete and his partner continue to explore the unknown history and how the original banjo was brought to life. Each banjo Pete makes is unique and tells a story of craft through the materials that go into it. He has made pieces for renowned musicians and those who collect banjos.

With 40 years as a road musician, award-winning bandleader, and multi-instrumentalist, Deanna Bogart is adored by her fans for her adventurous, original, and diverse music career. She is recognized for her dazzling keyboards, soulful saxophone, smoky vocals, cut-above songwriting, and her career getting massive growth when she lived in the Maryland area. She has played with stellar musicians everywhere including Jimmy Buffet, BB King, Ray Charles and much more.

Kendal Brown the owner and founder of 228 Grant Street Candle Co. brings his past life to his craft. His memories of spending time with his grandmother while she baked, did some gardening around the house and much more was the inspiration behind the candles he makes. His brand has grown tremendously as he has been on the TODAY show and Good Morning America.

The family behind Cravin Crabs who is located in Halethorpe has been in the crabbing business for centuries. They wake up at the break of dawn heading out on the water to catch many, many crabs and then bring them to their shop. The crabbing process is quite challenging but to this family, it’s simple, traditional, and gratifying.

A female baker who bakes Smith Island cakes day-to-day on Smith Island. She took on the craft while learning from other women who learned from their ancestors about the baking process. The layers of the cake are thin and you need a lot of pans to get to the twelve layers as each layer is baked separately.

The gentleman behind Ocean City entrepreneurship John Fager, who owns Fagers Island, the Lighthouse Inn, The Edge and much more. He started his time in Ocean City just vacationing and then in his twenties he decided to open up a pub called the Purple Moose located on the boardwalk. His business ventures stemmed from there and he brings a lot to the table when supporting the local Ocean City economy.

Kristan is currently rolling out the series and episodes will be airing on Tuesday and Friday every week over the next couple of months. You can find her podcast on any podcast channel. You can also follow along with Makers of the USA on Instagram and Facebook.

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