NEWS IN BRIEF
Maryland destinations, attractions reveal 1812 legacy
On June 13, 45 tall ships and naval vessels arrived in Baltimore as Maryland launches its three-year War of 1812 bicentennial commemoration with Star-Spangled Sailabration, the largest maritime festival Baltimore has ever hosted. The ships leave and Sailabration ends on June 19, yet tributes to the bicentennial continue.
"Our War of 1812 commemoration period has two spectacular bookend events," says Bill Pencek, executive director of the Maryland War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission and assistant secretary for the Maryland Division of Tourism, Film and the Arts. "Sailabration is the opening act. Then, in September 2014, Maryland celebrates the 200-year anniversary of the Battle of Baltimore and the writing of the National Anthem."
"Beyond Sailabration, Maryland's residents and visitors have plenty of options for experiencing the War of 1812 legacy at great attractions and destinations throughout the state," says Margot Amelia, executive director of the Maryland Office of Tourism. "St. Michaels, Solomons, Havre de Grace and Fell's Point, for instance, are four lively, scenic dockside communities – with a number of galleries, shops and restaurants – that have strong connections to the 1812 era and The Star-Spangled Banner."
View a sampling of locations across Maryland that reveals the War of 1812's legacy in the state. Many offer related exhibitions and events. Numerous local organizations are also planning exhibitions and activities to commemorate War of 1812 events that occurred in their areas.
DBED selects Bethesda as 'outstanding' A&E district
Bethesda Arts and Entertainment (A&E) District was named winner of the 2012 Award for Outstanding Achievement, an award the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development gives to one of the state's A&E districts each year. Stephanie Coppula, marketing and communications director for Bethesda Urban Partnership (the managing entity of the district) accepted the award at a yearly meeting of A&E managers, held June 6 in Silver Spring.
"The A&E District program helps localities capitalize on the unique cultural and economic landscape of the area," said Theresa Colvin, executive director of the Maryland State Arts Council, which administers the program. "By creating a bustling arts and cultural scene, Bethesda entices its sizeable downtown workforce to 'stay and play' in the area after work."
During fiscal 2011, Bethesda added 17 retailers and 15 restaurants into the district. It also began three new public events: Bethesda Poetry Contest, Bethesda Upscale Yard Sale and Bethesda FRESHFARM Market.
Maryland's A&E program uses tax incentives for arts-related enterprises through local jurisdictions as a way to spur revitalization in the districts. Designations and re-designations of districts are in effect for 10 years.
Bethesda is one of 19 A&E districts in the state. On July 1, the Bromo Tower Arts and Entertainment District – located in Baltimore's west side – becomes the program's 20th district and the third one in the city.
U.S. bicycle alliance ranks Maryland as a 'friendly' state
The League of American Bicyclists has ranked Maryland among its top 10 "Bicycle Friendly States" – number 8 in the nation and number 3 in the Northeast. The ranking considered such factors as: infrastructure and funding for bicycle facilities; education and programs that encourage cycling; and bicycle-friendly laws that promote safety.
In its assessment of the state, the League said "the recently established Cycle Maryland program is an excellent step to promote bicycle commuting and tourism."
Last June, the state launched Cycle Maryland, a program that Gov. Martin O'Malley initiated to raise awareness of Maryland's biking resources and to advocate for biking as a recreational and fitness activity, and as an environmentally-friendly mode of transportation.
"We recognize that Maryland's capacity for accommodating bicyclists enhances the quality of life for our residents, while making our destinations more inviting for visitors," says Carol Silldorff, executive director of Bike Maryland, a nonprofit organization that advocates for improved bicycling conditions and the rights of bicyclists.
View a recent news release regarding Maryland bike trails and bike events across the five regions of Maryland. Links to county bike maps and Cycle Maryland resources are included.
National Parks Foundation gives grants to Maryland parks
Three national parks in Maryland have been awarded $59,700 in grants from the National Park Foundation (NPF), Sens. Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin recently announced. Here are the parks and their awards:
"This funding will help grow Maryland's tourism economy and make an investment that will draw in new visitors to our states' treasures," said Sen. Mikulski, a member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, which funds the National Park System.
Sen. Cardin said: "These grants will help preserve our national parks for generations to come and allow them to continue imparting Marylanders with lessons about our state's rich history." Cardin is a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, who has advocated for funding for Maryland's national parks and greenways.
The National Park Foundation is an independent charitable organization chartered by Congress in 1967 that raises private funds for the benefit of national parks.
Silverdocs celebrates art of the documentary
The 10th annual edition of Silverdocs, the AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs Documentary Festival, runs June 18-24 at the AFI Silver Theatre in downtown Silver Spring. It features 114 films, which were selected from 2,018 submissions representing 44 countries. Among the screenings will be seven world premieres. Ticket information is available online.
"This year, fittingly for a festival that has united art and insight for a decade, there are a substantial number of films focusing on the creative process," said Skye Sitney, festival director. "We are particularly proud to showcase the latest work by documentary luminaries, while introducing new filmmakers to our highly engaged audiences and guests from around the globe."
Music documentaries open and close the festival. The opening film, Don't Stop Believin': Everyman's Journey, reveals the rags-to-riches story of Filipino singer Arnel Pineda, who through YouTube, went from obscurity to become the new lead singer of American rock band Journey in 2006.
The festival concurrently holds a five-day documentary conference, which allows more than 1,200 filmmakers and related-industry professionals to engage in classes, panels, workshops and pitching forums with leading documentarians.
State's free travel guide highlights commemorations
The Maryland Office of Tourism has released a new edition of Destination Maryland: The Official Guide to Maryland State Travel. This free travel magazine features annual events and itineraries in the state's five regions, along with listings for more than 2,000 attractions and destinations, state and national parks, lodging options, and tour and travel services.
It also includes Maryland Milestones, a section dedicated to the state's three commemorative observances that are taking place in 2012 through 2014: the Civil War sesquicentennial, War of 1812 bicentennial, and the centennial anniversary of Harriet Tubman's passing.
To get a free copy of the travel guide, call 800-719-5900 or order online at VisitMaryland.org. Destination Maryland is also available in a flip-book format.
Grand Prix of Baltimore tickets now on sale
Tickets for the Grand Prix of Baltimore – Labor Day weekend – are available on the race's web site (www.RaceOnBaltimore.com) through Ticketmaster. Orders can also be acquired by calling Ticketmaster, 1-800-745-3000. Last year, more than 150,000 fans attended the first-ever Grand Prix race in the city.
General admission tickets are $15 for Friday, Aug. 31, $50 for Saturday, Sept. 1, $55 for the day of the race, Sunday, Sept. 2. A three-day general admission ticket is $85. Reserved seat packages, which include reserved seating on Saturday and Sunday, are also available. Single-day reserved tickets go on sale July 15. Paddock passes – $40 for one day, $65 for three days – give fans access into the Baltimore Convention Center to see race cars and crews.
Culture and the arts: natural partners in Maryland's prosperity
A post on the National Endowment for the Arts blog by Christian Johansson, secretary, Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development
|CRUSA plans seminar for global-marketing plans
Learn about Brand USA's international marketing campaign and how to participate in Capital Region USA's marketing plans for 2013 at the Capital Region USA Goes Global 2013 International Summit, July 24 at the Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel in Northern Virginia. Call or e-mail Kimberly Petersen, 804-562-0168, for registration information.
Maryland Traditions presents day-long festival
The second annual Maryland Traditions Folklife Festival will be held – rain or shine – Saturday, June 16 at the Creative Alliance at the Patterson in East Baltimore from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. It features free performances and activities with two music stages, a storytelling stage, and master-artist workshops and demos tied to a variety of pursuits, including screen painting, decoy carving, quilting, boat-making and Smith Island cake-baking. Food vendors offer an array of cuisines. Free parking is available at the Brewer's Hill parking lot on O'Donnell Street, between S. Conkling and S. Haven streets. Maryland Traditions, a program of the Maryland State Arts Council, documents, promotes and celebrates traditional cultures in the state.
Hagerstown plans weekend of tributes to Civil War
Maryland's Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area presents its initial First Call Weekend, June 16-17 in Hagerstown. Like a bugle call that summons the troops, First Call signals a time for visitors to participate in a variety of public activities and events that commemorate the Civil War. The Washington County weekend – highlighting the sesquicentennial anniversary of the war's Maryland Campaign – includes re-enactors, living-history exhibitions, musical performances, artillery demonstrations, tours and museum displays. CWHA plans two more First Call Weekends: Carroll County in 2013 and Frederick County in 2014.
AIBTM brings meeting planners back to Baltimore
Meeting and event planners from around the globe convene at the Baltimore Convention Center, June 19-21, for the second annual Americas Meetings & Events Exhibitions (AIBTM). Produced by Reed Travel Exhibitions, AIBTM made its debut in Baltimore last year as the first American tradeshow in Reed's portfolio of international expositions for meeting planners. (In addition to EIBTM, a well-known show held each year in Barcelona, Reed presents similar shows in Beijiing, Abu Dhabi and Melbourne.) Nearly 1,500 trade buyers attended the Baltimore show in 2011. Of that number, 740 were hosted buyers – pre-qualified, top-level meeting and events buyers who receive complimentary travel and accommodations for committing to pre-scheduled appointments with exhibitors.
Delaplaine screening leads into Frederick Film Festival
The 4th annual Frederick Film Festival (F3) – having moved from March to June – screens 37 features and documentaries from 12 countries at the Weinberg Center for the Arts and the Cultural Arts Center in downtown Frederick, June 22-24. Ticket information is available online. As a prelude to F3, the Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center screens The Flow of Forsythe, a documentary about Frederick abstract artist Charles Eugene Forsythe, on Sunday afternoon, June 17. Forsythe will be at the event. F3 represents a partnership between the Weinberg Center and CinemaArts, a Frederick film organization. It receives support from the Maryland Film Office.