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Since 1988 • Priceless

From the Bay to the Blue Ridge

March 2020

oldtowncrier.com

oldtowncrier


Setting the Standard In Old Town Since 1979


march’20 A Division of Crier Media Group OTC Media LLC PO Box 320386 Alexandria, VA 22320 571-257-5437 office@oldtowncrier.com oldtowncrier.com Published the first week of every month. Worth waiting for! PUBLISHER Bob Tagert MARKETING & ADVERTISING Lani Gering Bob Tagert Meg Mullery SOCIAL MEDIA & WEBSITE Ashley Schultz DESIGN & PRODUCTION Electronic Ink 9 Royal Street, SE Leesburg, VA 20175 703. 669. 5502 Peggie Arvidson Nancy Bauer Sarah Becker F. Lennox Campello Steve Chaconas Scott Dicken Doug Fabbioli Nicole Flanagan Lani Gering Miriam Kramer Genevieve LeFranc Sarah Liu

CONTRIBUTORS Meg Mullery Melinda Myers Ron Powers Kim Putens Julie Reardon Ashley Schultz Jaime Stephens Bob Tagert Carl Trevisan Ryan Unverzagt Lori Welch Brown Molly Winans

© 2018 Crier Media Group, Inc. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. The Old Town Crier is published monthly and distributed to select Alexandria residents, hotels, restaurants and retail shops. Also distributed in the Annapolis, Fredericksburg, Blue Ridge and Washington, DC areas and St. John, USVI.

Since 1988 • Priceless

6

38

14

A Bit of History............................................................. 17

Fitness................................................................................41

Personality Profile............................................................ 6

After Hours.......................................................................11

From the Bay...................................................................22

Points on Pets.................................................................18

Alexandria Events............................................................ 3

From the Trainer............................................................43

Publisher’s Notes.............................................................. 2

Alexandria Symphony Orchestra '19-'20 Season....11

Gallery Beat.....................................................................12

Arts & Antiques..............................................................13

Go Fish...............................................................................45

Behind the Bar................................................................32

Grapevine.........................................................................38

Business Profile................................................................. 4

High Notes.......................................................................10

Caribbean Connection...............................................20

Let's Eat.............................................................................36

Dining Guide...................................................................34

National Harbor.............................................................47

Dining Out.......................................................................30

Old Town's Best Happy Hours.................................35

Exploring Virginia Wines............................................39

On the Road with OTC................................................... 1

The Last Word.................................................................... 9

Financial Focus.................................................................. 8

Open Space.....................................................................46

To the Blue Ridge..........................................................24

First Blush.........................................................................42

Pets of the Month.........................................................19

Urban Garden.................................................................16

Road Trip...........................................................................28 Social Media Message................................................... 2 Special Feature: Beware the Ides of March........... 5 Special Feature: Spring Comes Alive on Rt.55.....25 Spiritual Renaissance...................................................44 Take Photos, Leave Footprints......................................14

From the Bay to the Blue Ridge

March 2020

On the road with OTC L-R Ron, Ryan & Blake. oldtowncrier.com

oldtowncrier

about the cover The Rolling Stones Mick Jagger and Keith Richards rocking it out on the 2nd day of their Voodoo Lounge Tour on August 3, 1994 at RFK Stadium in DC. Photo by Chester Simpson. See Personality Profile on Page 6.

Old Town Crier

Ryan Unverzagt, Ron Wassenaar, and Blake Bell taking a break from the wind and snow in the mountains of Colorado to play a few rounds of golf in sunny Arizona at the Ocotillo Golf Resort in Chandler. Unverzagt pens the “From the Trainer” column in the OTC and he likes to spread the news out west. Boys just wanna have fun! Photo by Scott Garrett If you would like to see your photo in this space, take a high resolution shot and email it with a description for the caption to office@oldtowncrier.com. February 2020 | 1


PUBLISHER’S NOTES

BOB TAGERT

This last month we experienced rather nice weather for a February - good mixture of sun and rain with very little cold. I can deal with that but you never know what Mother Nature might throw at us in March. What we do have in March, however, is the most popular parade of the year, the St. Patrick’s parade on the 7th, daylight savings time goes into effect on the 8th, my birthday on the 14th, St. Patrick’s Day on the 17th and the first day of spring on the 19th. Speaking of Irish, we are introducing McNamara’s Pub & Restaurant in Arlington in Dining Out and one of Old Town’s popular - and very witty – Irishmen, Paul Smith, at O’Connell’s, in Behind the Bar. Check out the Personality Profile this month and read about the making of a Rock & Roll photographer. In From the Blue Ridge Julie Reardon gives us a little history of Point to Point racing. We profiled a “Hot” new business venture in Business Profile with Hurricane Bob Yakeley at the wheel. In our Road Trip we give you a look at Hollywood, Maryland and their oysters as well as a few more entertaining stops. Lori Welch Brown enlightens us on Middle Age Madness as opposed to basketball March Madness in Open Space and Parker Poodle fills in for Sarah Becker with his “Read Across America Day” awareness piece in A Bit of History. We say goodbye to Nancy Bauer who has been penning Grapevine for us for over 2 years. Her 30th and final column appears this month. We will be welcoming Matt Fitzsimmons in April. Wishing Nancy all the best in her new endeavor. I forgot to mention that we also have the “Ides of March” on the 15th. Check out some of the things that have happened on this infamous day in this issue. One of the ones that didn’t get a mention that was called to my attention was it was on this day in 1971 that CBS announced they were cancelling the Ed Sullivan show after 23 years. This… on the tails of dumping Red Skeleton and Jackie Gleason the month prior – a whole generation went into mourning. On an upbeat note, congratulations to Bill and Caroline Bruder-Ross, owners of River Bend Bistro on winning best in class for both dessert and appetizer in last month’s annual Cherry Challenge Contest. Chef Ross has been a contender every year. Time to get your Irish on, set your clocks up, get me a birthday present “Sláinte!” and commence with that spring cleaning and don’t forget to watch your back on the 15th! Erin go Bragh!

SOCIAL MEDIA MESSAGE

ASHLEY ROSSON

Instagram and the Restaurant Industry

H

ave you noticed how restaurants and public places are becoming more “Instagrammable”? Suddenly there is a new neon sign on a back wall, a collection of plants framed into a square shot. In some ways, it seems a little forcedbut then again, with so many people now posting their experience on Insta, and tagging the location, it can serve as significant, free promotional opportunity for those businesses that get it right. From visually appealing plates to splashing out on eye-catching décor, restaurants are capitalizing on the sharing craze to boost their business and get free advertising from legions of adoring fans. According to Fundera.com:

• 69% of millennial diners take a photo of their food before eating it. • 59% of millennial diners say they review menus online often or very often. • 20% more millennials dine out than their generational predecessors. • 50% of Gen-Z prefers limited service and fast casual to full service restaurants. • 30% of millennial diners actively 2 | February 2020

avoid restaurants with a weak Instagram presence. Some of the most “grammed” foods

are pizza, sushi, chicken, salad, past, bacon, burgers, eggs, steak, and salmon. Restaurants are also adjusting the way the restaurant runs and is designed.

They are implementing eye-catching wallpaper or wall art providing the perfect background for photographs or food. They are investing in spaces with natural light, or using overhead spotlights for picture-perfect snaps. They are including colorful walls or murals to bring in foot traffic off the street to help them get “geo-tagged,” which supplies the location of the restaurant. Some restaurants are even handing out miniature tripods and LED lights to encourage diners to share their snaps. Restaurants are also creating a narrative in their restaurant to intrigue customers. Jack’s Wife Freda, a popular New York eatery, retells the love story of the founder’s grandparents in the food, décor, and encourages diners to start their own love story with sweet souvenirs such as coasters that read, “We Met At Jack’s Wife Freda”. Most importantly, restaurants are creating signature dishes that look great on Instagram, resulting in higher sales, as diners are often purchasing several meals, just for the pictures. So the next time you go to your favorite spot to eat, look around and see if they have adjusted their dining experience to make it more “Instagrammable”! Old Town Crier


Alexandria

MARCH TOURS, EXHIBITS, EVENTS

Connect with us!

VisitAlexandriaVA.com Blog: blog.VisitAlexandriaVA.com

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VisitAlexVA

TIME: Fun Dog Show: 10:30am – 12pm Parade: 12:30 pm – 2 pm

MARCH 7TH

Photos by Kimberlee Bryce for The Ballyshaners

39th Annual Alexandria St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Fun Dog Show Visitors and residents are invited to don their green and line King Street in Old Town Alexandria, VA to kick off the region’s St. Patrick’s Day celebrations at the 39th Annual Alexandria St. Patrick’s Day Parade, presented by the Ballyshaners, a nonprofit organization that aims to promote and preserve Irish heritage. More than 2,000 participants will march in this year’s parade, including the Notre Dame Alumni Band, dog rescue groups, pipe and drum bands, historical re-enactors, Shriners and Kena cars, and Irish dancers. Parade-goers come early at 10:30 a.m. for the Fun Dog Show on Market Square, which benefits the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria. More than 30 costumed dogs will compete in a range of categories, including Best Human/Canine Look-Alike, Most Talented and Most St. Paddy’s Spirit. The dogs will then kick off the parade at 12:15 p.m.

WHERE: Parade starts at King and Alfred Streets and ends at Lee and Cameron Streets; the Fun Dog Show is on Market Square in front of City Hall at 301 King Street, Alexandria, VA

www.ballyshaners.org

SIGNATURE EVENTS: Friday, March 20: Pink Tie Party fundraiser presented by ANA at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center (early-bird tickets available now) Saturday, March 21: Opening Ceremony at the Warner Theatre Saturday, March 28: Blossom Kite Festival presented by Otsuka on the Washington Monument grounds Saturday, April 4: National Cherry Blossom Festival Paradeâ presented by Events DC (grandstand tickets on sale now) Saturday, April 13: Petalpalooza at Capitol Riverfront presented by CHASE Dates TBD: Tidal Basin Welcome Area and ANA Performance Stage

PREMIER EVENTS: Saturday, March 21: SAAM Cherry Blossom Celebration produced by Smithsonian American Art Museum Saturday, April 4: Sakura Matsuri Japanese Street Festival, produced by the Japan-America Society of Washington DC Sunday, April 5: Anacostia River Festival produced by the 11th Street Bridge Park Old Town Crier

– H T 0 2 H MARC TH APRIL 12

Cherry Blossom Festival 2020 The National Cherry Blossom Festival is one of the world’s great celebrations of spring. The 2020 Festival includes four weeks of events featuring diverse and creative programming promoting traditional and contemporary arts and culture, natural beauty, and community spirit. Visit nationalcherryblossomfestival.org or call 877.44.BLOOM for more information, check out Facebook (CherryBlossomFestival ), Twitter (@CherryBlossFest), and Instagram (@CherryBlossFest). The Festival has expanded its roster of sports programming, including the return of the Blossoms and Baseball game with the Washington Nationals, a Blossom Night with DC United, and a new partnership with the Washington Wizards.

February 2020 | 3


BUSINESS PROFILE

LANI GERING

Hurricane Bob’s SMALL BATCH, GOURMET HOT SAUCE

T

Hurricane Bob’s Heat Index The SAFFIR-SIMPSON Hurricane Scale is a 1-5 rating based on a hurricane’s intensity. This hurricane scale is used to give an estimate of the potential property damage and flooding expected along the coast from a hurricane landfall. The SCOVILLE SCALE is a measurement of the pungency (spiciness or “heat”) of the chili peppers and other spicy foods, as recorded in SCOVILLE HEAT UNITS (SHU) based on the concentration of capsaicinoids, among which capsaicin is the predominant component. HURRICANE BOB’S HEAT INDEX combines elements of both of these systems. 4 | February 2020

he publisher of the Old Town Crier has known Commander Robert “Bob” Yakeley (retired) since the mid-90’s and I met him fairly shortly after. While we knew he had a fairly colorful career as a fighter pilot in the U.S. Navy and was a man of many interests, concocting hot sauce never crossed our minds. I guess in retrospect he was noted for his culinary expertise but I just thought it was to impress the ladies. Little did I know it is truly a passion of his. One of the results of his passion for food resulted in his quest to perfect the hot sauce that he made for friends and family over the years and it has transformed into “Hurricane Bob’s”. Any of you familiar with fighter pilots or even the movie Top Gun know that they all have a call sign….. What started out as a weekend hobby in his kitchen slowly transformed into the creation of a really good, quality hot sauce. After experimenting with ingredients for 20 years and testing it out on family and friends, he finally found the right combination for his first batch of Cajun Dew, a *Category 3. I can attest to its flavor, he got it spot on, and I am pretty finicky about my hot sauce. He did his homework and found a bottler in North Carolina that met his standards of keeping his sauce true to taste and went into production last August. He told me that his motto is “Flavor First” and he got the right combination of cayenne and habaneros along with garlic, vinegar, and salt in the Cajun Dew. As it is described on his website, “Simple yet flavorful. Great on top of your local brick oven pizza or mixed with a craft Bloody Mary. Put it on anything you can imagine!” Following Cajun Dew is his newly released Inca Gold Peruvian Heat. I have yet to try this one. He went down

south…like South America…to source the peppers for this concoction. I hear he was under the influence of a former girlfriend from Peru when he started dreaming this one up. The official description for Inca Gold is: “This sauce combines the unique flavors of the South American Chili peppers (Habanero, Aji Amarillo and Rocoto) with fruity and zesty notes with just the right amount of punch. While not for the faint of heart, the subtle sweetness also pairs well with Paella, stir fry, chicken or seafood.” Inca Gold is a *Category 4. Bob told me he is perfecting a third sauce right now and is hoping to have it ready for prime time in late spring. It sounds like it is going to be the mildest of the bunch at a *Category 2. Celtic Green is its handle and he describes it as follows: “The Celtic Green batch uses Jalapeño and Serrano chili peppers with a well-balanced sauce that is smooth and easy to add to any dish. Not too overpowering, yet tasty and mild for most pallets.” Yakeley is always on the hunt for the next best peppers and dreaming up complimentary combinations. He is meticulous about what he wants and it is reflected in his dedication to his product. He told me that he is hands on right down to the design of his labels. Hurricane Bob’s is available online (hurricanebobs. com) and is continuing to make its way into the local retail market. It is on the shelves at the Old Town Store on Union Street, Daniel O’Connell’s Restaurant & Pub, Union Street Public House, Bonefish Grill and Virtue Feed & Grain. It is also available in wholesale/bulk and private labelling is in the very near future. Wouldn’t it be fun to have your name on some really “cool” hot sauce to go along with that private label wine/water you have from your favorite winery at your next gathering? Old Town Crier


OLD TOWN Shoe & Luggage Repair

65th Anniversary Storewide Sale

Now thru March 31, 2020

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824 King Street Old Town Alexandria, Virginia 703.299.0655 | Donshoe.com Mon-Fri 7:30 am-7 pm • Sat 9 am-5 pm

Beware the Ides of March... BY MARTIN STEZANO

I

t’s unlikely even Shakespeare could have predicted how his famous phrase would have evolved. Not only did William Shakespeare’s words stick, they branded the phrase with a dark and gloomy connotation that will forever make people uncomfortable. It’s probable that many people who use the phrase today don’t know its true origin. In fact, just

Old Town Crier

Family owned and operated for 65 years.

…But Why?? about every pop culture reference to the Ides—save for those appearing in actual history-based books, movies or television specials—makes it seem like the day itself is cursed. But the Ides of March actually has a non-threatening origin story. Kalends, Nones and Ides were ancient markers used to reference dates in relation to lunar phases. Ides simply referred to the first full moon of a given month, which usually fell between the 13th and 15th. In fact, the Ides of March once signified the new year, which meant celebrations and rejoicing. Yet, when heroes in movies, books and television shows are faced with the Ides of March, it’s always a bad omen. Several television shows have had episodes named “The Ides of March.” And it’s never good news. In 1995 alone, the Ides-related episode of “Party of Five” was based around a cocaine-related death and featured a nearincident involving drunk driving. “Xena: Warrior Princess” had its protagonist facing threats from an ominous vision that

showed her and her travel partner, Gabrielle, put to death by crucifixion. And Homer Simpson’s rise to power within the ancient secret society known as the Stonecutters in The Simpsons episode “Homer the Great” leads to his self-proclamation as a God. In warning him of his inevitable downfall, Lisa plays the part of the soothsayer, quoting “beware the Ides of March.” Homer simply says “No,” and laughs it off (much like Caesar did in the play) but, like Caesar, he soon experiences a swift undoing. In 2011, Columbia Pictures released a movie with the title about an idealistic campaign staffer (Ryan Gosling) who gets a harsh lesson in dirty politics while working for an up-and-coming presidential candidate (George Clooney). The movie involves quite a bit of figurative backstabbing, but it’s a pretty clear allegory for the death of Caesar. Again, death and destruction loom. Did the death of Caesar curse the day, or was it just Shakespeare’s mastery of language that forever darkened an otherwise normal box on the calendar? If you look through history, you can certainly find enough horrible things that happened on March 15, but is it a case of life imitating art? Or art imitating life? Perhaps it was Julius Caesar himself (and not the famous playwright) who caused all the drama. After all, he’s the one who uprooted Rome’s New Year celebration from their traditional March 15 date to January…just two years before he was betrayed and butchered by members of the Roman senate. Martin Stenzano is a contributing writer to the History.com. This article courtesy of the History Channel.

February 2020 | 5


PERSONALITY PROFILE BOB TAGERT

S

ome of you in Old Town Alexandria may know Chester personally. For those of you who don’t, let me introduce my friend. It was about 5 years after I started the Old Town Crier in 1988 that I first met

ROCK & ROLL PHOTOGRAPHER

Chester and Michelle.

Photo by Bob Tagert

Good things happen in Old Town when talented friends put their heads together. Local “Chief Storyteller” John Carter came up with an idea for Chester to have a show of his photographs at the talented Michelle Ward’s Principle Gallery at 208 King Street. This show will run April 10 & 11. It is the first time this prestigious gallery will host a renowned photographer’s work. In addition to the show, Chester’s guest will be local DC radio personality, Cerphe, where he and co-author Stephen Moore will hold a book signing. Watch for details in the Arts and Entertainment section in the April OTC. 6 | February 2020

Chester. I was trying to take a photograph of a subject for an article in difficult light out on the patio at Stella’s Restaurant, which is no longer there. I was having a difficult time with my lighting and Chester walked over and showed me how to

EXTRAORDINAIRE use his light meter. That is when I realized that I would always be a guy with a camera and never a photographer. It takes a lot of work and a lot of, well, taking pictures. When I asked Chester how he got started in photography he answered, “I have always been painting and drawing all my life and as a little kid growing up in Roanoke, Virginia I always had to go to church and, of course, church is boring for a little kid so I would get a program and where there was any white space I would start drawing and (laughter from Chester at the memory) my mother got me a sketch pad and I would sit in church and draw.” Over the years he became pretty good and continued to draw and paint throughout high school. As for college, he told his parents that he wanted to go to art school but they both told him that he could never make enough money as an artist. The solution was that, since he liked biology and science, he decided to go to school to become a park ranger. After two years he realized that his heart wasn’t into being

a park ranger and he decided that he wanted to continue is dream and go to art school. During this time Chester got an intern position with the Roanoke Times World Newspaper developing photographs. At the time they had never had an intern and said that they would take a chance. He would run errands, do work around the office in addition to developing photos. In the process he would take some film and went around town taking photos of anything and everything to build up a portfolio for the future. Chester used the portfolio that he developed and sent it off to the San Francisco School of Art where he would eventually earn a full scholarship. With his future mapped out he strolled into a local coffee shop and mentioned to his friends, “I am going to San Francisco in 2 or 3 months...anyone else want to go? A friend named Sherry said she would go, so I said save your money!” On June 10th she had her money and Chester sold his car PERSONALITY PROFILE > PAGE 7

From Top: Chester with Billy Joel in Nueberg, Germany—1994. Circa 1956-His parents really wanted him to be a doctor. Chester circa 1983. Chester with Jim Marshall at his book signing in NYC 1997. Photos courtesy of Chester Simpson

Old Town Crier


Joan Jett and the Blackhearts in Budapest, Hungary circa 1999. PERSONALITY PROFILE | FROM PAGE 6

and they began to hitchhike to San Francisco. “Everyone was so nice,” he tells me. “People would ask, where are you going, what are your dreams?” They would offer us money at the end of each ride, here take a ten or a twenty...people did this all the way across the country, it was great.” When they arrived in San Francisco they rented a studio apartment for $169 a month. A short time later Sherry came home with a guy named Joe who was a likable guy so now they had three...”I had the closet,” Chester remembers. During this time period they met another guy and all got around to smoking some weed. Everything was fine and they gave this guy a ride back to their apartment where they went upstairs to smoke one last joint. “He goes into the bathroom,” Chester relates, “ and comes out with a gun and robs us of everything we had.” Now they had to get jobs to pay the rent. Joe got Chester a job as a bartender at a strip joint in town. “Everything was run by the Mob,” Chester says. “We had bouncers around to take care of unruly customers. If someone wanted to start trouble with me, I would just motion for a bouncer and it was solved.” He made about $35 a night...all cash. “One night someone came in who knew my family and called my folks and told them that I was working in a strip joint. My dad called me and asked if I wanted to be a photographer that bad, and I said yes.” “If I sent you $200 a month would that help you out?” his dad asked. So Old Town Crier

Chester finally had money for his apartment. The stories never end… Chester went to photograph a concert one time and noticed some smoke coming out of one of the trailers. “I knocked on the door and a guy opened it and all this smoke came out...can I have some of that I said”. He was invited in to join Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead in some high quality Thai weed. Soon after the band had to go onstage to perform and everyone in the trailer was invited on the stage and backstage. This was a first taste of Rock & Roll stardom. At another event, Chester noticed an older photographer on stage and asked his name. It was the legendary Jim Marshall who, over time, formed a friendship and even a studio together with Chester. “I could learn from Jim faster than any studying would produce,” he says. “He taught me how to produce a perfect photograph and to save all my prints and never give images away. He taught me that I was an artist.” “One lesson I learned from Jim Marshall was the fact that the rockers didn’t want to just see YOU back stage...find a good looking lady and take her as your assistant,” Chester tells me, “It worked!” As time went on, and the partying continued, Chester eventually became addicted to heroin as many in San Francisco did. He told his mom that he was going to check himself into a hospital for treatment. Instead he came home to be in the care of his mother who was a Registered Nurse and made a full recovery. After recovery, Chester

Jane Goodall at Senate Hearing in 2008. moved to Alexandria, Virginia...with no job. “I slept on my cousin Gary Simpson’s couch. Gary was a bartender at Portner’s with Harry Williamson. Harry and Shady O’Grady (General Manager) were the first people that I met,” he says. He got a job as a freelance photo assistant for Newsweek and Time magazine photographers and did freelance photo assignments for the City Paper and the Alexandria Gazette when it was a daily newspaper. In May of 1986, he started as a full time staff photographer for the Alexandria Gazette. In 1989, he was offered a staff photography position with the Pentagon Army newspaper, The Pentagram. The Pentagram put Chester in touch with the USO and he went on 35 Celebrity World Tours from 1990 to 2003 with the top entertainers of their time. Documenting thirty-five USO tours with performers and celebrities such as Anita Baker, Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, Wayne Newton, Toby Keith, Spyro Gyra, Larry Gatlin, Ricky Skaggs, LaToya Jackson, Billy Joel, Jay Leno, Sheryl Crow, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts among many others. The tours took him to U.S. airbases in Iraq, Bosnia, Kuwait, Egypt, Israel, Azores, and others all over the world. Most recently he has traveled to India, Thailand and Vietnam. I asked Chester who he liked the best and worst to photograph. “The best,” he says, “was Sheryl Crow on a USO tour. She was so nice to everybody.” One of the other photographers on the tour bet Chester that he couldn’t get a kiss from Crow so at a dinner

one night he found himself sitting next to Cheryl and told her about the wager. “You can kiss me,” she says, so Chester leans over to give a little kiss on the cheek...that’s my man! The worst was La Toya Jackson, Chester said. “She would lip sync Michael Jackson songs, would sign only a few autographs and then leave and was always

rude to people” he says. In 2000, he was offered a Staff Photographer job with, “Stars and Stripes - in America,” and they folded 8 months later. He has been freelancing locally ever since as well as being a contributing photographer for Parklife DC, and, more importantly, is also now sharing his Rock & Roll photographs with the world.

February 2020 | 7


FINANCIAL FOCUS

A

fter a decade of reaping the benefits of a bull market in U.S. stocks, today’s investors face a volatile market—and proper positioning of your portfolio in the face of mixed economic signals has become increasingly important. In the “2019 Midyear Outlook Report: Eyes Forward—Opportunities and Obstacles,” Wells Fargo Investment Institute (WFII) strategists detail

CARL TREVISAN, CFP© & STEPHEN BEARCE

opportunities and obstacles in an aging bull market that could help you maintain a forward focus—and stick close to your long-term strategic target allocations. Here, WFII strategists offer five tips for positioning your portfolio.

Rebalance when volatility strikes Take steps to maintain the strategic or long-term target allocation designed to help achieve your longterm goals. As markets rise, the positions may need to be

trimmed and the cash held or reallocated to markets where valuations are better. As markets fall, the opportunity may arise to restore the target allocation.

Help reduce price volatility with incomegenerating assets Income is a sometimes overlooked component of portfolio returns. To potentially improve the income-generating ability of a portfolio, you can lengthen the duration of your highquality bonds. Dividend-

represent higher-quality earnings Investing in international assets can help you further diversify your portfolio. Valuations in many emerging markets look attractive, and recent economic data point to stable economies in China and other developing countries. As for U.S. equity markets, WFII strategists favor sectors such as Information Technology and Industrials, areas of the market with higher-quality earnings.

Add strategies that can benefit from various market conditions

Five Ways to Run With an Aging Bull Market paying stocks and REITs offer additional streams of portfolio income.

Use cash to your advantage If your portfolio already holds a sizable amount of cash consider investing your cash in case markets correct in the coming months. Another potential strategy is dollar cost averaging, which involves investing cash over time to take advantage of market fluctuations.*

Consider greater exposure to emerging market equities and sectors that 8 | February 2020

A bear market can occur with little warning. Adding assets that can profit in both up and down markets may help prepare your portfolio for possible downturns. *A periodic investment plan such as dollar cost averaging does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss in declining markets. Since such a strategy involves continuous investment, the investor should consider his or her ability to continue purchases though periods of low price levels. There is no guarantee that dividend-paying stocks will return more than the overall stock market. Dividends are not guaranteed and are subject to change or elimination. All investing involves risk including the possible loss of principal. Asset allocation and diversification do not guarantee investment returns or eliminate risk of loss. Each asset class has its own risk and return characteristics. The level of risk associated with a particular investment or asset class generally correlates with the level of return the investment or asset class might achieve. Stock markets, especially foreign markets, are volatile. A stock’s

value may fluctuate in response to general economic and market conditions, the prospects of individual companies, and industry sectors. International investing has additional risks including those associated with currency fluctuation, political and economic instability, and different accounting standards. This may result in greater share price volatility. These risks are heightened in emerging markets. Exposure to the commodities markets may subject an investment to greater share price volatility than an investment in traditional equity or debt securities. Bonds are subject to market, interest rate, price, credit/default, call, liquidity, inflation, and other risks. Prices tend to be inversely affected by changes in interest rates. Cash alternatives typically offer lower rates of return than longer-term equity or fixed-income securities and may not keep pace with inflation over extended periods of time. Wells Fargo Investment Institute, Inc. is a registered investment adviser and wholly-owned subsidiary of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., a bank affiliate of Wells Fargo & Company. This article was written by/ for Wells Fargo Advisors and provided courtesy of Carl M. Trevisan, Managing DirectorInvestments and Stephen M. Bearce, First Vice PresidentInvestments in Alexandria, VA at 800-247-8602. Investments in securities and insurance products are: NOT FDIC-INSURED/NOT BANKGUARANTEED/MAY LOSE VALUE Wells Fargo Advisors is a trade name used by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC, Member SIPC, a registered broker-dealer and non-bank affiliate of Wells Fargo & Company. © 2019 Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC. All rights reserved. Old Town Crier


THE LAST WORD

A

s humans, we look to the heroes, villains, and gods of myths to satisfy deepseated needs. Our desire to identify with archetypal heroes comes from our recognition that they are us, or at least us with the courage to achieve our fates while stripped of the pretense and tedium that accompany mortality. Absorbing their stories, we understand universal patterns of human nature through knowing their narcissism, loves, and feats of glory. Madeline Miller has rewritten and presented the heroes and heroines of Greek myths for our times in two beautiful novels that resonate on a human level: The Song of Achilles and Circe. Miller, a classics scholar, has taken her place as the Mary Renault of today, retelling myths with accessible, gorgeous language that glistens with subtlety and precision. The Song of Achilles presents a retelling of Homer’s classic work, The Iliad, through retelling the story of the hero Achilles, prophesied and destined to be the greatest warrior of his time from the viewpoint of his best friend and lover, Patroclus. Old Town Crier

MIRIAM R. KRAMER

Gods and Goddesses

From the beginning the story moves like a flashing stream in the sunlight, carrying the reader along with it. Patroclus, an undistinguished son of an unloving king, is banned to the kingdom of Phthia, ruled by mortal King Peleus. There he must negotiate a place for himself in exile, jockeying amongst all Peleus’s other foster sons. Upon meeting Achilles, son of Peleus and a goddess, the sea nymph Thetis, Patroclus is overwhelmed by his perfection, beauty, and lack of

arrogance. As the two unexpectedly become friends, Patroclus joins Achilles in his private lessons and even sleeps in his room. His friend reveals to him that a prophecy exists: he will become the best warrior of his generation. As one apart and anointed, he craves a companion his age who can surprise him. Patroclus finds himself coming to life near Achilles’ overflowing, effortless vitality. The two share stories, building an

intimacy that humanizes the half-divine hero-to-be. Soon they become more than friends, a living embodiment of the sun shedding light on a flawed human lover who casts a shadow from his brilliance. When Paris of Troy steals Helen away from her husband Menelaus, he sows the seeds of the Trojan War. All of Helen’s former suitors swore an oath to protect her regardless of whom she chose for a husband. When she is captured, the Greeks

come together to avenge and rescue her. Achilles’ cruel, cold mother, Thetis, worried for her son and jealous of Patroclus’ influence, hides Achilles away on an island, hoping to keep him away from the kings who want Achilles to fulfill his prophecy and win the war for them. After Patroclus finds the island where Achilles is hiding, their joy is shortlived. Odysseus of Sparta and Diomedes of Argos arrive by ship, looking for men to fight their war. Odysseus tricks Achilles, who is disguised as a girl, into showing his skills as a warrior. Tempting him, he promises him the immortality of a hero if he comes to fight against Paris and the famous warriors of Troy. Odysseus also threatens that Achilles’ godhead will wither and he will die an unknown weakling if he does not fight on the side of the Greeks. Then Thetis arrives, telling Achilles another part of the prophecy: that if he goes to fight this war, he will die a young man. Struggling between two choices, Achilles’ desire for greatness overcomes his wish to avoid the battles ahead. When he asks the grieving Patroclus to go with THE LAST WORD > PAGE 11

February 2020 | 9


HIGH NOTES

RON POWERS

I

f I’m being honest, I’ve never been particularly drawn to the band known as Cage The Elephant. For one reason or another I never got around to giving them a fair shake since they released their first album back in 2008. Well, all that changed when I heard that the “Godfather of Punk” (Iggy Pop) was featured on a new version of their song “Broken Boy”. “Broken Boy” first appeared on Cage The Elephant’s fifth studio album (Social Cues) and did not originally feature Iggy Pop. Although this collaboration didn’t result in any serious musical changes to the original song, the addition of Iggy’s lead vocal on the second verse and his background vocals on the choruses has given an already good song an unmistakable increase in weight and power. Iggy Pop sounds like the legend that he is on this track. The quality of his vocal performance has much to do with this, but credit must also be granted to producer John Hill and mixing engineer Tom Elmhirst. These two cooked up some of the coolest vocal 10 | February 2020

Broken Boy (feat. Iggy Pop)

by Cage The Elephant effects Iggy’s voice has ever been processed with. Pop’s vocals have multiple in-yourface slap delays which are soaked to the bone with the best sounding distortion my ears have ever heard. I can’t remember a time I was more impressed with the sound of a vocal. The production quality and musical arrangement of “Broken Boy” floored me. The various tones of guitar,

lead guitar, bass, synth, and drums combined to create a sound that feels both futuristic and timeless. The subtle atmospheric synth textures give the song its gritty and cutting-edge feel. While staccato guitar chords enforce a vintage charm that reminds me of The Rolling Stones mixed with surf rock. The snap and pop of the drum beat mixes well with the round blown-out fuzz

bass and gives “Broken Boy” a focused and muscular feel. As a whole, the song emits a vibe that is both wild and tame, chaotic and focused. As the song title implies, “Broken Boy” is about, well... brokenness. The band expresses this with metaphoric lines like “I was burned by the cold kiss of a vampire” and “I was bit by the whisper of a soft liar”. Lines like these give voice to some

very real pain but Cage The Elephant stays true to the spirit of punk rock in that they don’t wallow. Instead they drape that pain in poetry and rock-n-roll attitude. This is what rock music has done so well over the years. Namely communicate a truth that runs deeper than our troubles. It’s taken me a while to realize how talented Cage The Elephant actually is. I highly recommend you have a listen. You can find their music at most places music is streamed or sold. If you’d like to learn more about the band you can find them at cagetheelephant.com. You can also find them on Instagram Twitter and Facebook. The band is currently on tour and have dates booked through mid-July of 2020. You can learn more about the tour and if they’re coming to your town on their website. Ron Powers is an independent A&R specialist and music industry consultant and is constantly searching for, discovering and writing about new talent in all genres. Old Town Crier


THE LAST WORD | FROM PG 9

him to Troy, the die is cast for their future. The Song of Achilles is a stirring story of love, war, and the quest for glory and eternal fame in the face of mortality. In truth, Achilles’ heel is Patroclus, the best and kindest man he has ever known. Madeline Miller’s retelling of the Iliad brings it into focus as a Greek tragedy, one that fulfills the wishes of the gods on Mount Olympus and the hero archetype, which Achilles represents. Her next novel, Circe, is more personal, but equally worth savoring. Circe is born the daughter of a Titan, Helios, and a sea nymph, Perse, herself the granddaughter of the Titan Oceanos. Without the perfect beauty or typical powers of a goddess, she fails to impress either of her cruel parents, haughty to a fault, judgmental, and chilly. Her brothers and sisters despise her because they see their parents view her as a weakling and an outsider. After finding her true powers as a pharmakis, a type of witch who casts spells through using plants and herbs, Circe, jealous of a sea nymph named Scylla, accidentally changes her into a monster. Her siblings

share some of her powers, which are unknown to the point of alarming Zeus. Upon confessing to her act against Scylla, her father placates Zeus by making her the scapegoat for all his children. In the process, he casts her into lonely exile on a deserted island where she supposedly cannot hurt anyone. Circe is almost human in ways, despite her divinity. She feels regret, anger, loneliness, sadness, and happiness the way humans do. On her island, she creates a life for herself, refining her witchcraft by experimenting with flora and finding a way to change animals into other animals. She is visited by Hermes, who becomes her lover for a while, and is allowed to visit her sister on Crete, who still despises her but needs her help with the Minotaur, a monster she has born. During her life, Circe watches mortals live, burn away, and die, including lovers and friends. Gods and goddesses from other myths cross her path. When she is threatened in her cherished island home, she realizes her full powers as a sorceress and goddess to defend herself, turning stranded sailors who want to assault her into pigs. All the while she ponders what it is to be a goddess

versus being a mortal, particularly when she meets Odysseus and bears him a mortal son whom she knows will die someday. As a goddess despised and isolated, Circe is a sympathetic figure, one who even regrets turning her former romantic rival, Scylla, into a monster. She takes responsibility for mistakes large and small. Again, Miller digs deep into the Greek myth of Circe to create a multifaceted personality, shy but strong, able to stand up for herself to divine and mortal figures even after long years of solitude. She herself can pass for a mortal, and she must decide what that means to her after her centuries-long existence on the island. Madeline Miller’s original, sparkling language burnishes her stories and vividly brings them to fruition. Her stories may be based on myths we know intimately, yet they are unique and original, bringing the archetypes of heroes, gods, and goddesses to life. Beautiful and moving, they will enchant fans of mythology and other readers who want page turners that satisfy our deep need for tales that move us and provide catharsis.

Alexandria Symphony Orchestra 2019-2020 Season MUSICAL TALES OF BELONGING James Ross, Music Director Claudia Chudacoff, concertmaster PRECHTL: Tribute (world-premiere) FRANK: Three Latin-American Dances RIMSKY-KORSAKOV: Scheherazade

Saturday, May 16, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall Sunday, May 17, 2020 at 3:00 p.m. George Washington Masonic Memorial Tickets: $20-$85 for adults. Student tickets $10 (with ID). Youth tickets $5 (age 18 & under). Military, senior and group discounts available.  Purchase online at www. alexsym.org or call 703-548-0885. Free parking provided by the ASO at both venues. The Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center is accessible by Metro bus lines 7A, 7B, 7F, 7Y, 25A, 25C and 25E, as well as DASH bus line AT6.  The George Washington Masonic Memorial is accessible by the Blue and Yellow metro line (King Street station), numerous Metro, Dash and Richmond Highway Express bus lines, and the King Street Trolley in Old Town, Alexandria.

AFTER HOURS Birchmere 703.549.7500 3701 Mt. Vernon Ave. birchmere.com The Blackwall Hitch 571-982-3577 5 Cameron St. theblackwallhitch.com Carlyle Club 411 John Carlyle Dr. 703-549-8957 thecarlyleclub.com Chadwicks 203 S. Strand St. 703.836.4442 Evening Star Cafe 703.549.5051 2000 Mt. Vernon Ave.

Old Town Crier

The Fish Market 703.836.5676 105 King St. fishmarketoldtown.com La Portas 703.683.6313 1600 Duke St. The Light Horse 703.549.0533 715 King St. lighthorserestaurant.com Murphys Irish Pub 703.548.1717 713 King St. murphyspub.com O’Connell’s 703.739.1124 112 King St.

Rock It Grill 703.739.2274 1319 King St. Shooter McGees 703.751.9266 5239 Duke St. shootermcgees.com Southside 815 703.836.6222 815 S. Washington St. St. Elmos 703.739.9268 2300 Mt. Vernon Ave. Taverna Cretekou 703.548.8688 818 King St.

TJ Stones 703.548.1004 608 Montgomery St. tjstones.com LaTrattoria 703-548-9338 305 S. Washington St. Two Nineteen 703.549.1141 219 King St. Village Brauhaus 710 King St. 703-888-1951 These establishments offer live entertainment. Call to confirm show times, dates and cover charges. Check our advertisers’ websites.

October 2019 | 11


GALLERY BEAT

F. LENNOX CAMPELLO

Sanborn's Lingua in Washington, D.C.

Photo courtesy of David of flickr.com/photos/bootbearwdc

A FEW THOUGHTS ON A FEW THINGS WHICH SHOULD BE OF INTEREST TO ALL ARTISTS: THINKING OUT

LOUD ABOUT ART!

The Statues at Union Station in WAshington, D.C..

12 | February 2020

Photo courtesy of Jerry Stratton

Public Art Selecting artwork for an American public collection is a fine art in itself, as the artwork has to avoid the appearance of remotely insulting anyone or making any sort of social statement that may be offensive to any segment of the public. Thus we usually end up with a lot of abstract, nonrepresentational art in most public venues, and nudity needs not apply - I have called it “airportism” in the past. Over a decade ago, when the then “new” Washington Convention Center unveiled its art collection to the public (selected curiously by a Chicago firm), they introduced the then largest public art collection in Washington, DC, with over 120 works of art, sculpture, paintings, photography, graphics and mixed media. They spent around four million dollars, of which half was allocated to DC area artists. The plan was to keep “adding” works to the collection in the mostly empty and cavernous WCC – not sure that ever happened. The DMV quite possibly has the largest and most diverse set of public art in the nation – between all the WPA era projects, all the private and city-funded murals, all the homage statuary by the federal government, by the city and by the embassies, we have a wide ranging variety of public art – including a form of public art which almost no other American city has: nudes.

Granted, all the naked statuary adorning our area is in some cases over a 100 years old, when it was curiously OK to put up a nude statute under the auspices of classic art, where no city in this country would dare to nudify anything being paid or offered with tax payer money. Back to the Convention Center: My favorite piece there is Jim Sanborn’s Lingua, which is perfectly located in the Grand Lobby of the center. Sanborn has delivered two sixteen foot columns, like modern standing stones, that flank the visitor as one enters the center. The columns are etched through in eight different languages (with parts of historical texts recalling gatherings (conventions)) and it is lit from the inside. This projects the words onto the walls, ceilings and people as one walks through. Sanborn has reacted with a very powerful answer to this call for public art for a convention center. The ability of Lingua to marry a modern view of an ancient ritual, in my eyes makes it the most successful piece in the collection. However, I am a Virgo, and there’s one small, but bothersome issue that I must point out, as I suspect that Sanborn may not be aware of it. The eight languages cut through the columns are French, Ethiopian, Greek, Latin, Chinese, Russian, Onondaga and Spanish. And it is with the Spanish orthography used in the columns that I (and I

suspect anyone who can read Spanish) have a nagging issue. The Spanish paragraph cut through at the top of the left column describes Columbus’ triumphant reception in Barcelona. But whoever cut the words through used a generic alphabet to create the words, rather than a Spanish language alphabet. Initially, the differences, letter for letter, are small. But once you start assembling words together, Spanish, like all Romance languages, uses a complex set of accents to indicate the correct pronunciation and spelling of a word. And the column’s Spanish text is missing all the accents, and thus is full of misspellings and gibberish. For example, the word “bajo” could mean “short” as in “he was a short man” but if you add an accent to the “o” at the end, as in “bajó,” it can translate as “came down” as in “he came down the ladder.” I suspect that the French text suffers from the same type of errors. As I’ve noted, the placement of Sanborn’s Lingua is perfect, and so is the spectacular location of Pat Steir’s Red on Blue Waterfall, located on Level 2 at the L Street Bridge. And in fact, nearly all the work is placed in very good locations. And yet, considering all the empty space all around the center, there are some questionable placements that come to mind. For example, I don’t understand why so GALLERY BEAT > PAGE 13

Old Town Crier


ART&ANTIQUES

Curzon Hill Antiques 108 S. Columbus Street

B&B Art Gallery 215 King Street

Exclusively representing the works of

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Price and additional images upon request.

Spurgeon-Lewis Antiques 112 N. Columbus Street

A Galerie 315 Cameron Street

BW Art, Antiques & Collectibles 108 N. Fayette Street

Enamelist’s Gallery 105 N. Union Street

Random Harvest 810 King Street

Imperfections Antiques 1210 King Street

Printmakers, Inc. 105 N. Union Street

Acme Mid-Century + Modern 128 S. Royal Street

The Antique Guild 113 N. Fairfax Street

Van Bommel Antiek Hous 1007 King Street

Silverman Galleries 110 N. St. Asaph Street

Lloyd’s Row 119 S. Henry Street

Red Barn Mercantile 1117 King Street

GALLERIES

Washington Square Antiques 425 S. Washington Street

Torpedo Factory Art Center 105 N. Union Street

Susquehanna Antique Co. 608 Cameron Street

Principle Gallery 208 King Street

Old Town Antiques 222 S. Washington Street

Potomac Fiber Arts Gallery 105 N. Union Street

Verdigris Vintage 1215 King Street

St. George Gallery 105 N. Alfred Street

Cavalier Antiques 400 Prince Street

The Art League 105 Union Street

Sumpter Priddy III 323 S. Washington Street

Local Colour Old Town 218 N. Lee Street

Betty Grisham Studio 105 N. Union Street

Henry Street Antiques 115 S. Henry Street

Icon Galleria 101 N. Union Street

Imagine Artwear 112 King Street

GALLERY BEAT | FROM PG 12

many photographs have been grouped together in a rather isolated area on Level Two. I do realize that whoever selected the locations thought that by grouping seventeen photographs into a small corridor (“small” is relative in the convention center sense) they were creating a “photo gallery.” Doesn’t work.

Airportism As you travel across this great nation, airports strive for unique individualities – but the one common denominator is how boring and predictable the public art which decorates airports has become over the decades. There are exceptions – such as the rare airport which also boasts of built-in art galleries, which rotate shows as any gallery would – of course avoiding any of the taboos mentioned above.

Art History The number one spot in my top ten most influential books (on me) of all times has been occupied since 1977 by The Painted Word by Tom Wolfe. I think that this book should be required reading for all art school freshmen across the nation, as it will prepare and armor them against all the bull that the art world will be about the heave at them. If you have not read it, please do. Can I start by saying that this book “saved my art life”? Old Town Crier

Let me explain. In 1977 I started art school at the School of Art at the University of Washington in Seattle, as a not so impressionable 21 year-old with a few years as a US Navy sailor under my belt. But in the world of art, there’s a lot of re-molding and impressions being made upon students by a very galvanized world. And although I was a few years older than most in my class... I was probably as ready as any to swallow the whole line and sinker that the “modern art world” floats out there. Then I read The Painted Word - it was given to me by Jacob Lawrence, a great painter and a great teacher --although I didn’t get along with him too well at the time. I read it (almost by accident and against my will --- it was a get-a-way weekend with my then-girlfriend - it went sour). And this book OPENED my EYES!!! It was as if all of a sudden a “fog” had been listed about all the manure and fog that covers the whole art world. I used it as a weapon. I used it to defend how I wanted to paint and feel and write. And it allowed me to survive art school. And then in 1991 - as I prepared to look around to start my own gallery - I found it again, at The Art League library in Alexandria, VA. I read it again, and to my surprise Wolfe was as topical and effervescent and eyeopening as ever!

Kelly’s Art & Frame 510 N. Washington Street Oerth Gallery 420 S. Washington Street Jeffrey Winter Fine Arts 110A S. Columbus Street Johnston Matthew 105 N. Union Street Huddy Studio 105 N. Union Street Mezzanine Multiples 105 N. Union Street Silverman Galleries 110 N. St. Asaph Street

F. Lennox Campello

“ONE OF THE MOST INTERESTING PEOPLE OF WASHINGTON, DC” Syreni Caledonii (Northern Atlantic Mermaid). Watercolor, charcoal and Conte. 2019, 12x36 inches.

– Washington City Paper

Alida Anderson Art Projects, LLC, Washington, DC www.alidaanderson.com / info@alidaanderson.com

Shop For A Cause! March 8 International Women’s Day 15% of Sales Donated to Friends of Guest House

Cochran David 105 N. Union Street

Wolfe has a lot of bones to pick with the art world – a ton of years ago!!! He destroys the proliferation of art theory, and puts “art gods” like Harold Rosenberg, Clement Greenberg, and Leo Steinberg (who have ruined art criticism for all ages - by making critics think that they “lead” the arts rather than “follow the artists”) into their proper place and perspective. He has a lot of fun, especially with Greenberg and the Washington Color School and their common view about the flatness of the picture plane. Here’s my recommendation: If you are a young art student (regardless of age) or a practicing artist: SAVE YOUR ART LIFE! Read this book!

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February 2020 | 13


TAKE PHOTOS, LEAVE FOOTPRINTS SCOTT DICKEN

W

hen thinking of Fiji one may daydream of invitingly pristine white-sand beaches, hammocks strung between palm trees, and bars serving ice cold beers. And you would be right. Kuata, a tiny island only two hours by boat from Fiji’s main island of Viti Levu, lives up to those expectations. Yet, I’d made the trip with intentions far from a lazy day in paradise. The sole purpose of my visit was to experience an ‘up close and personal’ interaction with sharks in the wild. World renowned for its opportunities to dive with the predators of the deep, the Barefoot Kuata Resort arranges for visitors to face their fears by offering guided dives and snorkeling with all manner of predators from the notorious Bull Shark to Tiger Sharks, Great Hammerheads, Lemons, and Reef Sharks. Is it safe? Is it ethical? Is it worth it? These are probably all questions running through your mind. Read on to find out.

The Experience My day began in relative tranquility, as most holidays to lush tropical paradise islands should. After two hours of cruising between palm-fringed islands and skimming across the azure waters of the South Pacific, we arrived at Kuata’s beachfront. I was greeted by ukulele-wielding resort staff eager to extend a traditionally Fijian “Bula”, an infectiously genuine greeting wishing you good health and happiness. Following further rounds of trading “Bula’s” with pretty much every resident of the tiny island, and having slathered enough sunscreen on to my pasty white British Skin to sink a battleship, we boarded yet another boat to head out twenty minutes towards the local Moyia reef system. At this point you could sense a growing anticipation and excitement amongst my fellow shipmates as we strapped on our fins, tightened our dive goggles, and readied our camera equipment for the adventure that awaited beneath the surface of the water. It wasn’t until the final moments of an unnervingly comprehensive safety and interaction briefing that the tranquility was truly pierced. “I’ll pray for you.” Although uttered in jest, those were the chilling final words spoken by our captain as we launched ourselves over the side of the boat and into the shark-infested waters. Regardless of the consistent messages of our absolute safety, there is a sense of foreboding as you gracefully step off a boat and plunge into the ocean or, as is more my style, belly flop into the murky depths after slipping on a floatation device. That foreboding is only heightened when you spot a herd of sharks (also called a ‘school’, ‘gam’, ‘frenzy’ or ‘shiver’) circling below amongst the coral. My concerns were soon replaced by gloriously colored coral and tropical fish seen through a thick curtain of bubbles hurtling upwards to the surface. And then I saw a 3-meter-long Whitetip. A Whitetip Reef Shark was gracefully swimming towards me in what I can only describe as an inquisitive, yet cautious, approach. While lower on the danger and size scale than the Bull Shark it was nonetheless intimidating when it used its mouth to

14 | February 2020

Old Town Crier


take a closer inspection of my camera. Both Black and Whitetip Reef Sharks are regarded as docile on a relative scale of shark aggressiveness. Although inquisitive by nature, they’re generally skittish. From a safety perspective, jellyfish stings are likely of greater concern than being attacked by a Reef Shark. Whilst reef tips might well be 99.99% safe to swim with, as with any adrenaline activity there is an element of risk - perhaps from a shark having a particularly bad day or taking a misguided nibble after mistaking your leg for a chicken drumstick. It’s for that very reason that being surrounded by twenty-odd Reef Sharks over the course of an hour was extremely unsettling. Growing to around 6ft in length, Whitetips are considered a near-threatened species due to their late age of maturity, small litter size, and the loss of their traditional coral reef habitat. They’re also commercially over-fished in some tropical markets. For this reason, tourism programs such as the one operated by Kuata play an increasingly important role in sustainable conversation efforts; something that Take Photos Leave Footprints is happy to support.

Practical Information My time at Kuata was focused on reef sharks. In large part this was due to time restrictions during my visit. If you have more time, I would highly recommend the Island’s unique ‘Awakening Shark Dive’. Developed by shark experts and designed to ensure dive safety and sustainability, the Awakening Shark Dive puts divers up close and personal with Bull Sharks in their own habitat and on their own terms. Bull Sharks have a strong reputation for being aggressive, but this is a controlled experience led by highly knowledgeable guides and has been specifically designed by shark behaviorists. So, similarly to the reef shark snorkeling and diving, you’re in relatively safe hands. Both snorkeling with reef sharks and the ‘Shark Awakening Dive’ can be booked directly through the Barefoot Kuata Resort. The day trip options available on the website include boat transfers from Denerau port on the main island of Viti Levu to the Yasawa Islands. Kuata is the first island reached in the Yasawa Island Chain. The boat transfers are operated by South Sea Cruises and Awesome Adventures Fiji. Bookings can also be made through those two websites. Snorkeling and dive gear is provided by the resort. In addition, non-motorized watersports such as kayaks and paddleboards are available for use free of charge. The only things you’ll need to take with you are a beach towel, sunscreen, an underwater camera and your nerve! Recommendation of Barefoot Kuata Resort and Awakening Shark Dive excursion are mine alone – without any payments or pretensions If you would like to read more travel stories like this, check out Scott's blog at takephotosleavefootprints. com ken

Photos: Scott Dic

Old Town Crier

February 2020 | 15


URBAN GARDEN

MELINDA MYERS

Designing a Beautiful Garden for You and the Pollinators

Raised pollinator garden beds can easily be added to any landscape.

Photo of the raised garden courtesy of Gardener’s Supply Company

16 | February 2020

Y

ou don’t need a prairie or large lot to attract and support pollinators. A meadow or informal, formal and even container gardens can bring in bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to help pollinate plants. It’s just a matter of selecting the right plants, adjusting your maintenance practices, and skipping the pesticides. Create your garden by converting a few square feet of lawn, garden bed or front yard into a pollinator-friendly garden. You may want to start by switching out part of an existing garden or container to more pollinator-friendly flowers. Expand your planting options by converting a portion of your lawn into a pollinator garden. Outline the bed with a hose or rope. Remove the sod, add compost as needed to improve drainage and you’ll be ready to plant. Simplify and dress up your efforts by using an easy-to-assemble raised garden kit like the Pollinator Garden Bed (gardeners.com). Its long-lasting cedar planks slide into aluminum corners to create a hexagonal bed. Get creative while increasing the garden’s size by adding additional sections to create a honeycomb or other interesting design. Mark the outline of the raised bed you select. Cut the grass short and cover with newspaper. Set your raised bed in

place and fill with a quality planting mix. Mulch four to six inches surrounding the raised bed for ease of mowing and to eliminate the need to hand trim. Once your planting bed is prepared, you’re ready to plant. Include single daisy-like black-eyed Susans, coneflowers, and asters that allow visiting insects to rest and warm when sipping on nectar or dining on pollen. Add a few tubular flowers for butterflies and hummingbirds. They both like bright colors and can be seen visiting salvias, penstemon and nasturtiums.  And don’t forget the bees that are attracted to bright white, yellow, blue and ultraviolet colors. You’ll find them visiting these and other blossoms like catmint, sweet alyssum and perennial geranium. Include spring, summer and fall bloomers to keep pollinators visiting and well fed throughout the season.  You’ll enjoy the seasonal changes along with the color and motions the visitors provide. Include early spring perennials and bulbs to attract visitors in early spring as they search for much-needed food. Add fall flowers to help prepare them for winter or migration to their winter homes. Those in milder climates will want to add some pollinator-friendly flowers to support and attract pollinators wintering in their backyard. Plant flowers in groups for greater design impact and to reduce the energy pollinators expend when gathering nectar and pollen from one flower to the next. Provide plants with enough space to reach their mature size. Temporarily fill in voids with annuals like salvia, single zinnias and nicotiana that also attract

pollinators. Mulch the soil with leaves annually. It suppresses weeds, conserves moisture, improves the soil and provides homes for many beneficial insects. Allow healthy plants and grasses to stand for winter. These provide homes for many beneficial insects and food for birds. Wait as long as possible to clean up your garden in spring. If needed, pile clippings out of the way to allow beneficial insects to escape these winter homes once temperatures warm. Then shred and compost the plant debris in summer. Don’t let all the plant and design possibilities overwhelm you into inaction. Contact your local garden center or if you are more on line with online purchasing, Gardener’s Supply Company has plans for designing gardens to attract bees, butterflies and hummingbirds plus tips on keeping them safe in your garden. As your gardens flourish, you will want to create more pollinator-friendly spaces.  Your efforts will be rewarded with beautiful flowers, increased harvest and the added color and motion these visitors provide. Melinda Myers has written more than 20 gardening books, including Small Space Gardening. She hosts The Great Courses “How to Grow Anything” DVD series and the Melinda’s Garden Moment TV & radio segments. Myers is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms magazine and was commissioned by Gardeners Supply for her expertise to write this article. Her web site is www. MelindaMyers.com. Old Town Crier


A BIT OF HISTORY

O

n December 21, 2019, my mistress’ brother unexpectedly passed away. His children were sad and needed to snuggle. I, Parker A. Poodle, a Reading Education Dog, love to snuggle. I do it well— or so I suppose. What they really wanted was a better understanding of love. “Mama, do you love me?” children’s author Barbara M. Joosse asked. “Yes I do…I love you more than the raven loves his treasure, more than the dog loves his tail, more than the whale loves his spout…Mama, what if I carried our eggs—our ptarmigan eggs!...and I tried to be careful, and I tried to walk slowly, but I fell and the eggs broke? Then I would be sorry. But still, I would love you.” If my mistress accidentally fell down the stairs I would run, from wherever I am immediately to her side. Even if it meant that I hurt myself similarly. My love, a dog’s love is unconditional. As is a grandmother’s love, the grandmother who reportedly reentered a burning building to rescue her grandson. March 2 is Read Across America Day. Share your love of reading—not only with me—but also those you dearly love. Love: “deep affection or fondness.” Unconditional: “not subject to conditions, stipulations or terms; complete as in unconditional surrender.” Confederate General Robert E. Lee, who followed his beloved State surrendered at Appomattox Court House on April 8, 1865. “As President Lincoln requested, the terms were generous: the Confederate officers and men were free to go home with their own horses.” Lee’s lesson: reconciliation (1865-1870). “All should unite in honest efforts…to resolve the blessings of peace,” he said. According to the NIV Archaeological Study Bible “dogs were first domesticated in prehistoric times. A site called Ein Mallaha in northern Israel Old Town Crier

PARKER A. POODLE ™ A.K.A. SARAH BECKER™ ©2020

Let’s Celebrate Read Across America yields the earliest uncontested archaeological evidence for domesticated dogs (9,000 B.C.).” We dogs were “revered.” That said the Biblical references are not always kind. Proverbs 26.11: “As a dog returns to its vomit, so a fool repeats his folly.” Or Proverbs 26.17: “Like one who seizes a dog by his ears is a passer-by who meddles in a quarrel not his own.” Nowhere is doggie heaven described, only “pits filled with carefully buried puppies.” “When dogs go to heaven, they don’t need wings because God knows that dogs love running best,” Cynthia Rylant wrote in Dog Heaven. “He gives them fields [and] the dogs each find a cloud bed for sleeping. They turn around and around in the cloud until it feels just right, and then they curl up and they sleep.” At my arthritic age I slide more often than I run, especially when heading downstairs. “I’ve always felt almost human,” Garth Stein’s yellow Labrador said in The Art of Racing in the Rain. “Sure I’m stuffed into a dog’s body, but that’s just the shell. It’s what’s inside that’s important. The soul.” Soul, as defined by The Oxford American Dictionary: the moral, emotional or intellectual nature of a person or animal.” Psalm 95.18-19: “When I said, ‘My foot is slipping,’ your

love, O Lord, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.” “Astrid and Eli had many things in common,” Kate Klise wrote in Stay: A Girl, A Dog, A Bucket List. “They lived in the same house, ate at the same table, and slept in the same bed. There was only one difference: Astrid was a girl and Eli was a boy. And a dog…For every birthday Astrid celebrated, Eli had the equivalent of six or seven birthdays. When Astrid was six, she was still a young girl, but Eli was an old dog. ‘You walk so slowly now,’ Astrid told Eli one day.” “I’m old,” Stein’s yellow Labrador continued. “And while I’m very capable of growing older, that’s not the way I want to go out. Shot full of pain medication and steroids to reduce the swelling of my joints. Vision fogged with cataracts.” “Think about…someone who loves you,” Pat Zeitlow Miller suggested in When You

Are Brave. “Once you find your courage, it’s easy to [do so] again.” “Several general officers have brought their wives to camp, and I am very envious, not of their wives (who are rather dull), but in the pleasure they have of being able to see them,” The Marquis de LaFayette wrote wife Adrienne in January 1778. “George Washington has also just decided to send for his wife, a modest and respectable person, who loves her husband madly….” “I wanted you more than you will ever know, so I sent love to follow wherever you go,” Nancy Tillman wrote in Wherever You Are. “It’s high as you wish it. It’s quick as an elf. You’ll never outgrow it, it stretches itself! So climb any mountain, climb up to the sky! My love will find you. My love can fly!... It never gets lost, never fades, never ends…There’s no place, not one, that my love can’t find you.” George Washington, father of the Foxhound, died on December 14, 1799. “Washington was a more respectful than a tender husband certainly, yet we found this excellent Woman [wife Martha] grieving incessantly,” Mrs. Henrietta Liston, wife of the British Ambassador wrote in August 1800. “She repeatedly told me that all comfort had fled with her Husband, and that she waited anxiously her dissolution. And

indeed it was evident that her health was fast declining and her heart breaking…[In 1802] a few months after our departure, we heard of her death.” I Corinthians 13.1, 4-8: “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal…Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered; it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes; always perseveres.” “Give all to love; obey thy heart,” Ralph Waldo Emerson penned. “Friends, kindred, days,/ Estate, good-fame,/ Plans, credit and the Muse,— Nothing refuse./ It is a brave master;/ Let it have scope; Follow it utterly,/ Hope beyond hope;/…It will reward.” I will love my lady always. And she will always love me. Especially, when we huddle up and read a book. Read America! Open a book; and your heart. Parker A. Poodle™ is the significant companion of columnist Sarah Becker. She started writing for The Economist while a graduate student in England. Similar publications followed. Sarah joined the Crier in 1996 while serving on the Alexandria Convention and Visitors Association Board. Her interest in antiquities began as a World Bank hire, with Indonesia’s need to generate hard currency. Balinese history, i.e. tourism provided the means. The New York Times describes Becker’s book, Off Your Duffs & Up the Assets, as “a blueprint for thousands of nonprofit managers.” A former museum director, SLAM’s saving grace Sarah received Alexandria’s Salute to Women Award in 2007. February 2020 | 17


POINTS ON PETS

SARAH LIU

It’s Kitten Season – And We Need Your Help!

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he phrase “kitten season” describes the time of year when the reproductive system of unaltered female cats kicks into gear, and many litters of kittens are born. The exact month can vary based on the local climate, but in our community kitten season usually occurs from March to October. During this time, thousands of homeless kittens flood shelters and rescue organizations placing additional burdens on already scarce resources. Statistics vary but are inevitably grim. In 2019, the Humane Society of the United States estimated 70% of cats entering shelters were eventually euthanized. Many rescue organizations, especially county and municipal animal shelters, lack the financial resources or available staff to care for injured, sick, or neonatal kittens, and must resort to euthanasia to combat

the influx of homeless kittens. Fortunately, social awareness regarding the plight of homeless animals is showing an upward trend. The Humane Society estimates the number of cats and dogs entering shelters has reduced by about 50% in the last three decades, with 6-8 million intakes in 2019 vs. 13 million in 1973. There are many ways that we, as individuals, can alleviate the stresses of our local rescue organizations:

SPAY OR NEUTER YOUR PET AND TRAP-NEUTERRELEASE. By now, we’ve all heard the arguments for spaying or neutering our pets. In addition to curbing behavioral issues, many studies show it’s better for your cat’s long-term health in preventing cancer and other diseases. If expense is a concern, there are many low

ADOPTION CALENDAR FOR DETAILS AND MORE INFO www.kingstreetcats.org emai: contact@kingstreetcats.org

Are you or someone you know free during weekday mornings? King Street Cats is looking for weekday morning caregivers and vet taxis to transport our cats to the vet. Please email: contact@kingstreetcats.org for details. King Street Cats is looking for foster homes! You provide the spare room and TLC and we can provide food, litter and all vetting. Please email: contact@kingstreetcats.org for details.

18 | February 2020

cost spay and neuter programs in our community and the greater DC area, including Spay Inc., Casey’s House, and the Alexandria and Arlington Animal Welfare Leagues. If you feed or help care for outdoor feral or “community” cats, consider working with a trap-neuter-release (TNR) group to reduce the number of feral litters. These unplanned unwanted litters sadly make up a large percentage of kittens euthanized in shelters. Organizations such as Metro Ferals and Alley Cat Allies promote nonlethal alternatives to feral or community cat population control, often trapping and neutering outdoor cats before releasing them back in their home community.

FOSTER SOME KITTENS. One of the biggest issues faced by rescues and shelters

KING STREET CATS 25 Dove Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 Every Saturday and Sunday from 1.30pm-4.30pm PETVALU Bradlee Shopping Center, 3652 King St, Alexandria, VA 22302 Every Sat/Sun from 1pm-4pm

is a lack of physical space to accommodate extra kittens. As a result, most organizations offer a foster program that allows volunteers to host kittens or cats in their own homes. Fostering offers numerous benefits to the hostfamily and kittens alike. The host gets to experience the joys of raising kittens without long-term commitment. Most organizations will pay for any needed medical care and many even provide food and other supplies. Kittens don’t need much room, even a bathroom or small bedroom will suffice. Fostering is great for kittens, too. Bonding with humans helps young cats learn social skills and appropriate behavior, which increases their adoptability. Kittens don’t need much space, a bathroom or bedroom will do, and a private home is a safer environment, since juvenile cats are more susceptible to the germs and

viruses present in the shelter environment. Many shelters also provide training for bottle-feeding and specialized medical treatments. The bottom line: fostering frees up space in rescues for other cats and prevents more euthanasia due to space constraints. If you’re interested in fostering, reach out to your local shelter or rescue organization and ask about their program. As a long-time volunteer with King Street Cats, and a frequent fosterer, I can attest to the joys and rewards of the foster program, and vouch for King Street Cats support system and training.

VOLUNTEER AT A RESCUE. If you can’t foster cats in your own home, consider volunteering a few hours a POINTS ON PETS > PAGE 19

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Old Town Crier


POINTS ON PETS | FROM PAGE 18

want to spend time caring for and bonding with felines.

month or week at your local shelter. The majority of these places are “staffed” by a diverse group of unpaid big-hearted volunteers, and make great places to connect with your community in the context of caring for adorable cats and dogs. Many organizations, King Street Cats included, offer a flexible schedule, and a variety of available duties like feeding, cleaning, medicating, adoption counseling, writing, or even fundraising or publicity planning. Organizations like King Street Cats and the Animal Welfare Leagues of Alexandria and Arlington even offer specialized training and classes in niche areas such as neonatal care, senior care, medication administration, and behavioral training and techniques. Volunteering is an especially great option for cat lovers who can’t own a cat, due to allergies of a loved one or no-petsallowed living situations, but

MAKE A DONATION. If you can’t foster and you can’t volunteer, you can still help! Donations in any amount are always welcome, and most organizations have websites with an online donation setup. If you work for the government, consider pre-tax donations via Combined Federal Campaign (CFC), which can amount to as little as $1 from each paycheck. As many rescues operate non-profit and are staffed by unpaid volunteers, precious gifts of money save extra lives. Donations are especially helpful in kitten season as food and veterinarian bills sky rocket with the influx of homeless kittens. And if you can’t contribute financially, consider donating supplies. Many shelters can put your extra towels, blankets and unused pet food to good use.

Cremation of Horses & Companion Animals (571) 835-0540 Chantilly, VA IMPetServices.com

RESOURCES: HTTPS://SPCANOVA.ORG/SPAY-INC/ HTTP://METROFERALS.ORG/ HTTPS://WWW.CASEYSHOUSE.ORG/ HTTPS://WWW.AWLA.ORG/SERVICES/COMMUNITYSERVICES/ HTTPS://WWW.ALLEYCAT.ORG/ HTTPS://WWW.KINGSTREETCATS.ORG/

PETS

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MONTH TIGER

4101 Eisenhower Avenue Alexandria, VA 703-746-4774 alexandriaanimals.org Mon-Fri, 1-8 pm Closed Wed Sat & Sun, 12-5 pm

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Adult, Spayed Female, White Short-haired Rabbit

Adult, Spayed Female, Tortoiseshell Domestic Shorthair

Adult, Spayed Female, Brown and White American Pit Bull Terrier

What does adoptable Tiger want you to know about her? Well, she is one smart gal and always knows who has the treats and where they are. Tiger is also ready to try any new thing. Games, meeting new friends, clicker training, she’s ready to go! And lastly, she wants you to know that she’s ready to meet her new best friend. Could it be you?

You’ve heard of life in technicolor, but what about life in torti-color? Sweet Pea sees the world through her torti-color glass, which means every sunny spot is a napping opportunity, every feather wand is an offer to play and person who walks past her enclosure might be her new best friend. Her optimism was never damped by her time all alone as a stray, because Sweet Pea knows that at the end of any storm is a beautiful orange and brown rainbow.

Cocoa has made a lot of friends during her stay

/alexandriaanimals.org/animal-profile/?id=41928 alexandriaanimals.org/adoption-information/ Photo of Tiger courtesy of Dirty Paw Photography

alexandriaanimals.org/animal-profile/?id=41570 alexandriaanimals.org/adoption-information/ Photo of Sweet Pea courtesy of the AWLA

at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, especially with the volunteers who walk with her and spend time with her in her kennel. How do they describe her? “The sweetest, cuddliest dog ever!” “OMG! What a loving, gentle, warm and loving dog.” (Yes, she is that loving!) “What a good girl. We chased the toys and then she just wanted to get face rubs and sit for treats.” “She drowned me in kisses and snuggled next to me.” Is Cocoa the pup for you? alexandriaanimals.org/animal-profile/?id=41894 alexandriaanimals.org/adoption-information/ Photo of Cocoa courtesy of Dirty Paw Photography

Old Town Crier

February 2020 | 19


CARIBBEAN CONNECTION ALEXANDER BRITELL

Rum Journal

Cruzan Single Barrel, the Essence of St Croix

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t Croix changes as you drive along its green curves, beaches giving way to lush hills and farmland and ocean

cliffs. It’s an island that rewards those who dig deeper, whether you’re walking the old alleys of Christiansted or bowing your head through a branched tunnel to the golden sands of Shoys.  It’s an island that begs rediscovery; each time you

20 | February 2020

return you find new delights and formerly hidden wonders. It’s also an island of rum, home to Cruzan, one of the Caribbean’s truly venerable distilleries, a sugarcane symbol for the things that make this place wonderful.  But we are in a time where the world of fine rum is in flux; one where many enthusiasts spend their time seeking out unnervingly high-proof expressions and

other rums that can be too far divorced from the very islands where they are made. But that’s also in part because we can take the broad offering of aged rums now available for granted.  Before the current rum boom, though, choices of rums to sip were few and far between. There were the old regulars - Bacardi 8, earlydays Zacapa and Barbancourt.  A decade or two ago, rum lovers, particularly those in the United States, could seldom find quality expressions for a regular sip.  But there was also another rum that was always on the store shelf: Cruzan, both its Estate Diamond and single barrel bottlings, rum that was always fine and always true.  In recent years, though, Cruzan’s aged expressions CARIBBEAN CONNECTION > PAGE 21

Old Town Crier


CARIBBEAN CONNECTION FROM PAGE 20

have sometimes gotten lost in the shadow of rum’s age of plenty. And that is quite a shame.  But when you spend time on a rum-producing island you cannot help but spend some serious time with its expressions, and that’s exactly what happened this week on a trip to St Croix.  Whether at outposts like Rum and Wine or the new, lovely Breaker’s Roar tiki bar, it was Cruzan, neat, on the regular agenda, and it was consistently, wonderfully, satisfying, a thrilling reminder of what truly is one of the Caribbean’s essential rums (not to mention one of the great rum values, too). So what is it like? Cruzan Single Barrel, the company’s flagship expression, is a blend of multi-column rums of between five and 12 years aged in American white oak.  There’s a tangy aroma of caramel and oak, with a playful flavor profile with notes of cane stalk, white pepper, spice, caramel, malt, a hint of vanilla and a rim of

butterscotch. It’s the finish where things really deliver; all of the notes coalesce into perfect balance, smooth and honest with the slightest whisper of confectioner’s sugar.  The body is on the lighter

side, but there’s depth and elegance; the more you sip the more you understand, the more you discover. It’s rather like the island where it’s made. And isn’t that what a Caribbean rum should be?

Alexander Britell is the founder and Editor in Chief as well as contributing writer to the popular online magazine/website, the Caribbean Journal, based in Miami, Florida. We are happy to have him contributing to the OTC and our Caribbean Connection Section. Check out the Journal at caribjournal.com for valuable information on all fabulous travel options and things of interest in the Caribbean.

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February 2020 | 21


FROM THE BAY …

TIMOTHY B.WHEELER

Striped bass fishing cuts to hit Bay anglers harder than watermen Critics question Maryland plan for ending overfishing, which also goes easier on charter boats

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nglers in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries will be limited to landing just one striped bass a day under new rules approved this week by East Coast fishery managers.

the state is planning to crack down on anglers who “target” rockfish for catch-and-release during times when it’s illegal to keep them. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, which regulates fishing for migratory species in near-shore waters, authorized a patchwork of catch restrictions to be imposed along the coast and in the Bay aimed at halting a troubling decline in the species. They did so only after a lengthy and attimes querulous debate about the efficacy and fairness of states’ varied rules. Maryland’s proposed catch restrictions came under particularly close scrutiny from

released. The panel directed that all anglers be limited to catching one fish a day. It also set uniform size limits for keeping fish caught along the Atlantic coast and in the Bay, a major spawning and nursery ground for the species. States were permitted, though, to deviate from those cutbacks, as long as their rules reduced overall fish losses by the same amount. Fishery managers in the Bay states of Maryland and Virginia proposed curtailing the recreational catch more than the commercial harvest, even though the commission had called for both sectors to share equally in the reductions.

East Coast fishery managers have called for an 18% reduction in the mortality of striped bass because of a worrisome decline in their population. (Dave Harp) The only exception is in Maryland, where state officials plan to let customers on charter fishing boats bring home two of the highly prized rockfish, as they are known in the Bay. And there’s still more controversy about Maryland’s plan to stem the slide of the East Coast’s most popular finfish. The state has shortened but not closed its spring “trophy season,” when anglers can go after the biggest of the species, even though those happen to be the most productive spawners. And 22 | February 2020

critics who questioned the science behind the proposal and whether it would actually meet the commission’s requirements. The action approved comes after scientists warned nearly a year ago that the Atlantic striped bass population was overfished, with the number of spawning age females at a worrisome low. The commission last fall called for states to make an 18% reduction in the catch of striped bass as well as in their deaths after being caught and

Managers did so in large part to protect the livelihoods of watermen, but they also noted that recreational fishing accounts for a larger share of the striped bass losses. Anglers catch many more of the fish than their commercial counterparts, and still more die at anglers’ hands after being caught and then released because they were undersized or hooked out of season. Virginia eliminated its spring trophy season for striped bass last year shortly after the scientists’ warning came out.

The state commission also adopted recreational rules last summer limiting anglers, including charter customers, to one fish per day year-round. It had previously been two per day. Under the Maryland plan, its trophy season remains in place, though it’s delayed and shortened. There will also be a roughly two-week closure in late August, and the season will close for the year five days earlier in December. Anglers also will be forbidden to “target” striped bass for catch-and-release during the late summer closure and throughout April, just before the trophy season starts on May 1. State officials say they want to curtail catch-and-release, a popular sport fishing practice, because scientists have found a significant percentage of fish die after being hooked and returned to the water. That mortality is highest in summer, when warm water and lower oxygen levels add to the stress of being caught and handled. But the commission’s technical committee expressed a lack of confidence that a “no targeting” rule would reduce catch-and-release as much as Maryland managers calculated it would. The committee also questioned how well the rule could be enforced, because there’s often not one fishing method or gear that’s uniquely used for hooking striped bass. Michael Luisi, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources director of fishery monitoring and assessment, defended the state’s plan. He said the spring trophy season represented the only opportunity for Maryland anglers to catch the larger fish that can be caught most of the rest of the year roaming the coast. Charter boat customers, Luisi said, would be allowed to keep twice as many fish as private anglers because charter captains fear that a one-fisha-day limit would kill their businesses. He said Maryland has had a “no targeting” rule in effect for years in certain parts

of the Bay and has cited anglers for violating it. Maryland’s plan won the board’s approval, by a 10–3 vote, with two abstentions. Environmental and sportfishing advocates questioned the decision. “Unfortunately, serious concerns remain that Maryland’s plan will achieve the needed conservation benefit,” the Bay Foundation’s Chris Moore said. He noted that Maryland has failed in the past to limit striped bass harvest as much as it said it would, and he called for a “more risk-averse approach.” David Sikorski, executive director of the Coastal Conservation Association Maryland, representing about 1,400 saltwater anglers, likewise questioned the adequacy of the plan. He also complained that it placed an unwarranted and unfair share of reductions on sports anglers. Allowing charter fishing clients to keep more fish “pits portions of the recreational fishery against each other,” he said. He also contended that there’s no justification for barring catch-and-release fishing in April, when the greatest mortality threat is midsummer. He likened that restriction to “holding the lettuce on a double bacon cheeseburger and pretending you’re on a diet.” The DNR will soon publish its proposed regulatory changes for the summer and winter striped bass seasons. Once the regulations are proposed, the public will get a chance to comment. The states’ rules for curtailing striped bass mortality are to be in place by April 1. Timothy B. Wheeler is associate editor and senior writer for the Bay Journal. He has more than two decades of experience covering the environment for The Baltimore Sun and other media outlets. This article was distributed by the Bay Journal News Service. Old Town Crier


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TO THE BLUE RIDGE

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pring may not feel like it’s here yet, but it’s a sure sign it’s on the way when the point to point season gets underway in early March. And, there’s no better cure for a little cabin fever than taking in some world class racing action over fences just an hour from Washington D.C. It all starts Saturday, March 7th with a brand new course in rural Culpeper County hosting the Rappahannock Hunt Point to Point Races. Rappahannock’s races, long a fixture on the early spring circuit, resume after a 12-year absence returning in 2020 with a new location on what may be the circuit’s prettiest course in Boston, Va., at the Hill Farm. This location is near the Culpeper/ Rappahannock county line about halfway between Culpeper and Sperryville. Point to point races are the minor leagues of steeplechasing, or racing over fences, a sport popular in our state since colonial times. This type of racing has its roots in the hunt field--hundreds of years ago, a pair of Irish foxhunters raced cross country using a church steeple as a landmark, to settle the question of who had the faster hunting horse. Now, as back then, horses still race over natural countryside and farmland and jump natural obstacles, although courses are set up so spectators can see all

JULIE REARDON

AND THEY’RE OFF!

Point to point season kicks off this month in the Blue Ridge or most of the race from the sidelines or the infield. Later in the spring, races are sanctioned by the National Steeplechase Association and offer cash purses and in some locations, parimutuel wagering, but the feeder program for these prestigious races is the local point to point circuit, with none bigger and more competitive than Virginia’s. The local hunt clubs are the backbone and the labor force of the point to points in Virginia, where each club sponsors a race meet nearly every weekend in the spring. Foxhunting clubs are mostly subscription-based but for most, their point to point is the major source of income to offset the costs of maintaining a kennel of hounds, horses, trucks, trailers and tractors as well as associated feed, veterinary and staff expenses. Every hunt member, including non-riding social members, volunteers for the myriad tasks involved, from entries, hospitality tents, parking,

programs and admissions, and course maintenance—no small task, since most of the “courses” are actually cow pastures. These meets, long referred to as the “pots and pans” circuit, are considered “unsanctioned” and offer no prize money— horses race for trophies, seasonend awards and bragging rights. But the competition is nevertheless fierce; point to points provide an important training ground for horses and riders that will go on to run in the bigger national races sanctioned by the sport’s governing body, the NSA, such as the Virginia Gold Cup. For the fans, the point to points offer the fans a chance to see the action up close and rub elbows with the owners, trainers and riders. Admission fees are generally less than half of what the big sanctioned races cost, and most of the courses offer spectacular scenic views of the racing as well as the iconic Blue Ridge splendor in the

background. Admission starts at just $7 per person at the Rappahannock Hunt’s March 7th races; a variety of reserved railside tailgating spaces and tent rentals are available by advance reservation as well. (Call 540-222-9887 or email bartonhitchcock@gmail.com for info) The location, at the Hill farm, 13257 Durante’s Curve, Boston VA, is a longtime favorite fixture for hunting for its rural beauty and sweeping vistas. This will be the first time racing will be held at the farm. The farm owner, himself a horseman and active participant in racing over fences as an owner, trainer and rider, has worked hard to install a first class course in a splendid little valley with sweeping views of not only the entire course, but the panoramic mountain vistas. “He [the Hill farm owner Larry Levy] has pulled out the stops to make it perfect. You drive through the beautiful, pristine farm to get to it, and it’s in a natural bowl, with

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24 | February 2020

parking on three of the four sides of it. All will have really good views of the course,” said Rappahannock Hunt’s Barton Hitchcock, race committee cochair. In addition to general admission parking, tailgating spaces and party tents are available to rent onsite that will have these same unimpeded views of the entire course as well as the mountains. “We’re having good food, too,” Hitchcock added. Not just the usual food truck fare, Barbara’s Soul Food will be one of the onsite vendors. “Really good stuff, like fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, good old country cooking.” Race day attire is country casual; these March race meets are not as much about high fashion’s latest trends as they are about being warm and comfortable for early or variable spring weather. Head gear and footwear tend to be practical rather than fanciful. Admission prices vary for each race meet, most offer discounted pricing for advance ticket purchase and general admission on race day. Visit their websites if available or call the listed numbers for specific questions. Races are generally run rain or shine but unusually wet or inclement weather has been known to force postponement or even cancellation; if any questions call the information number listed for each race.

BLUE RIDGE > PAGE 24

Old Town Crier


2020 Schedule March Events

Photo: Lauren Fleming

Spring Comes Alive on Route 55

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short road trip on Interstate 66 from Washington, D.C., brings you to the quaint and historic small town of Marshall, Virginia. While maintaining its agricultural roots, Marshall has become the new “go to” spot where rural Virginia dovetails nicely with sophisticated and unique dining and shopping experiences. Spend a day or a weekend exploring Main Street Marshall, AKA Route 55, and spring will come alive. A cornucopia of dining options, unique shops, natural beauty, and vineyards are just a few reasons to visit. Planning your Easter menu? Then get some ideas by starting your day with coffee at the famous Red Truck Bakery and feast your eyes on the cakes, pies, cookies and other sweet treats. A small menu of delicious sandwiches and soups, for vegans and carnivores alike, also can be enjoyed. The laid-back atmosphere at Johnny Monarch’s makes it an ideal spot to meet up with friends. Directions not necessary. It’s impossible to miss the British double-decker bus on Main Street with indoor and outdoor dining. While it looks quirky and whimsical, the food is deadly serious. Customers line-up for Johnny Monarch’s award-winning signature dish, tomato pie. Fine-dining restaurant Field and Main pays homage to Marshall’s agricultural history by remembering how local farmers would bring products from nearby fields to Main Street. Owners Neal and Star Wavra still depend on locals for fresh meats and produce. This charming upscale eatery is receiving rave reviews and national recognition. Reservations recommended. Suggest planning ahead for Field and Main’s popular Easter brunch. Big Dog Pots Pottery is a working studio Old Town Crier

offering wheel-throwing pottery classes and pottery-centric parties for children and adults. In addition, a splendid retail space welcomes visitors where one can find functional and beautiful ceramic works of art that can be used for a lifetime or given as unique gifts. All are welcome to tour the studio and observe a class in progress. Yet another one-of-a-kind shopping experience awaits at Tri-County Feeds, Fashions, Finds located on Route 55 near Marshall. Locals benefit from being able to simultaneously buy feed for their Easter chicks and rabbits while enjoying a shopping experience that is the polar opposite of shopping while staring at a computer. Jeri Jackson, co-owner with her husband Bill, is a former model and her eye for fashion and merchandising is apparent. This beautifullyappointed 12,000 square feet space carries a vast array of clothing and accoutrement for the local equestrian community and nonequestrians alike. But there’s so much more. Just go. Marshall’s popularity is evident in the always-booked and aptly-named Rooms Up There. Located at 8393 West Main Street, the rooms are above the design studio of Daniel J. Moore and his shop, Domestic Aspirations. Furnishings and décor in the rooms come from the shop, which carries antiques, fine reproductions, contemporary accents, lighting, and gifts. Affordable real estate and a commitment to maintaining the rural character by discouraging high-density growth make Marshall, Virginia, and surrounding areas desirable spots to live, work, and play. Come visit and see for yourself.

RAPPAHANNOCK HUNT POINT TO POINT Saturday, March 7 1:00 pm The Hill, Boston, Virginia (540) 229-7752 (540) 270-8580 www.rappahannockhunt.com

PIEDMONT FOX HOUNDS POINT TO POINT Saturday, March 21 1:00 pm Salem Course, Upperville, Virginia (540) 592-7100

WARRENTON HUNT POINT TO POINT Saturday, March 14 12:00 noon Airlie Race Course, Warrenton, Virginia (540) 270-1730 www.warrentonhunt.com

ORANGE COUNTY HOUNDS POINT TO POINT Sunday, March 29 1:00 pm Locust Hill Farm, Middleburg, Virginia (540) 687-6605 pippymcc@gmail.com

February 2020 | 25


SPECIAL FEATURE

MEG MULLERY

Background photo: Lauren Fleming

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• Lighting • Art • Accessories

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26 | February 2020

“America’s Best Bakery Destinations”

“One of America’s best small-town bakeries” TRAVEL+ LEISURE

SEND A TASTE OF VIRGINIA! WE SHIP OUR CA K ES, M U FFINS, GR ANOLA & COFFEE NATIONWIDE AT R EDTRUCKBA K ERY.CO M

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Old Town Crier


CAMEO: A rare appearance, a moment in the story, and adornment to enjoy. This spring as we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment, Savor this Cameo Rose moment, crafted in tribute to the women who fought and won the right for all women to vote. 12 different labels, each honoring one of the Commonwealth’s most influential women.

VISIT US AT : CAMEOWINECOLLECTION.COM CAMEO IS AVAILABLE AT:

Old Town Crier

February 2020 | 27


ROAD TRIP

BOB TAGERT

Hollywood, Maryland FAMOUS FOR THE OYSTERS AND NOT THE OSCARS!

T

his month we decided to go south to Hollywood, Maryland in St. Mary’s County - it is a straight shot down Rte 5 to 235 from the Beltway. Just follow the signs to St. Mary’s. It was named in 1867, when a store owner at Thompson’s General Store near the Uniontown section of the county required a name for the post office inside the store. The store owner was inspired by the gigantic holly tree planted in front of the store and named the post office Hollywood. Hollywood also includes the nationally renowned Sotterley Plantation on the banks of the Patuxent River. Sotterley was founded in 1703 by James Bowles, a wealthy planter. Hollywood is also noted for the letter O, and it doesn’t stand for Oscar...it stands for Oyster, and Hollywood Oyster Company produces some of the best oysters in Maryland. Aquaculture has become a popular profession and is creating an industry of sustainable oyster farming. The Patuxent River is the deepest

tesy of Photo cour

river on the East Coast and is over a mile wide where the Hollywood oyster farm is located. Hogs Neck Creek has a clay/sand bottom and is lined with fossilized rock-giving the oysters their signature taste! These are the very popular Sweet Jesus oysters. Hollywood Oyster Company has a fleet of their own trucks that deliver locally and flies oysters regularly around the USA. There are many restaurants in the DMV that serve the Sweet Jesus oysters. Look for them the next time you crave some good bivalves. Close to Hollywood Oyster Company is Snellman’s General Merchandise Store on Sotterley Road. This local store is worth writing about by itself. If Snellman’s doesn’t have it, you don’t need it...pretty much. I have driven by this store many times over the years and my only purchase has been ice and beer to take to my boat. Little did I know what I’ve been missing on Friday nights. This is a local’s secret (or it was) that I heard about from friends who have a house on the water and

are regulars. Every Friday (and only Friday) the “Shuck Shack” is open in the little bar in the very back of the store. From 5pm to 7pm you can belly up to the bar in this back room, listen to some live music, meet local folks and get a complimentary serving of five of those Sweet Jesus oysters on the half shell. You can order more either steamed, roasted or raw. You will be greeted by Willy, the proprietor, when you walk in and shown to the bar. Get there early to get a good seat it’s well worth the experience. A short drive on Sotterley Road will bring you to Sotterley Plantation, a historic landmark plantation house located at 44300 Sotterley Lane. We have featured Sotterley a few times over the years in the OTC. It is an amazing place. It is a long one and a half story, ninebay frame building, covered with wide, beaded clapboard siding and wood shingle roof, overlooking the Patuxent River. Also on the property are sawn-log slave quarters circa ROAD TRIP > PAGE 29

ndle B&B

Victorian Ca

Sotterley Plantation grounds.

Photo courtesy of Sotterly

28 | February 2020

Old Town Crier


Photo cour

tesy of To

bacco Barn

Distillery

Map by FreeVectorMaps.com

ROAD TRIP | FROM PAGE 28

1830, and 18th-century brick warehouse, and an early 19thcentury brick meat house. Farm buildings include an early19th-century corn crib and an array of barns and work buildings from the early 20th century. Opened to the public in 1961, it once was the home of George Plater, the sixth Governor of Maryland, and Herbert Satterlee, a New York business lawyer and son-in-law of J.P. Morgan. The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. Sotterley was declared a National Historic Landmark in 2000, its natural significance due to the extremely rare surviving elements of the main house’s oldest phase, ac. 1717 post in ground structure, and the other elements of its later historical architecture and landscape. Sotterley Plantation is the only Tidewater plantation in Maryland open to the public that offers visitor activities and Old Town Crier

educational programs. In early October the Riverside Winefest is held at Sotterley. Celebrate the best of Maryland wines with over 20 Maryland wineries, live music, local food, cooking demos, local beer tasting, and artisan marketplace. Greenwell State Park is located in the same area as Sotterley on Rosedale Manor Lane. Funded by the Greenwell Foundation, this park is host to all sorts of nature field trips, summer camps as well as equestrian programs. There is access to the water and activities for all ages. Tobacco Barn Distillery, located in Hollywood is the first “legal” distillery in Southern Maryland. They are bringing back the heritage of the whiskey bourbon distilling that was born in Maryland when Basil

Hayden, Sr. was making whiskey from corn in the 1700’s in St. Mary’s County. While it was not yet called bourbon, it was made from corn and had a high rye content, a true bourbon mash bill. Hayden unfortunately left for the “frontier” (aka Kentucky) in 1786, but they honor his spirit of a high rye content bourbon. Tobacco Barn Distillery has been selected as Maryland’s Bourbon by the Whiskey Advocate Magazine and continue to make and age their bourbons and whiskeys on the farm that grows the corn for these great products. Tobacco Barn makes bourbons, whiskeys and rum. They use their own corn for the

whiskeys, and locally source any other grains used. They buy molasses from Dominion Sugar located in Baltimore. Their Big Z rum is fantastic and is aged in barrels that are placed in the hold of the naval ship The Constellation which resides in Baltimore Harbor. The slow motion of the ship moves the rum around in the barrel imparting color and flavor. Dining opportunities in Hollywood are plentiful when it comes to the chain variety but if you want something more local, Stoney’s Clarke’s Landing is a good place to land. It is a bit off of the beaten path on Clarkes Landing Road but it sits on

the water and is home to some good seafood and a few adult beverages. We didn’t stay overnight in Hollywood area since we made plans to stay on the other side of the river with friends, however, there are several B&B’s (we recommend The Victorian Candle - it has 7 beautifully appointed rooms and includes a full breakfast) and roadside hotels the likes of Holiday Inn, etc. While you are in Hollywood you are close to lots of the people, places and things that make Southern Maryland a destination. Take the time for a road trip and visit these historic and fun places. They are right down the road in St. Mary’s County. February 2020 | 29


DINING OUT

THE GASTRONOMES

MCNAMARA’S PUB AND RESTAURANT 567 23rd Street South, Crystal City, VA 703-302-3760 mcnamaraspub.com HOURS OF OPERATION:

M-F 11am-2am | Sat & Sun 10am-2am

McNamara’s Pub & Restaurant A Touch of Ireland on 23rd Street

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arch is a perfect time to visit an Irish Pub and embrace all that is Irish. This month we ventured out of Old Town to check out McNamara’s, the new Irish Pub and Restaurant in Arlington/Crystal City. The restaurant anchors the west end of “Restaurant Row” on 23rd Street. It had been quite some time since we ventured to 23rd Street we sort of forgot how many varied eateries there are in that one long block. The cuisine choices are very diverse and there is virtually something for every pallet. We need to make a plan to go back. In the meantime, let’s talk about McNamara’s. Scott Dicken, our Take Photos, Leave Footprints columnist, recommended we check it out shortly after it opened a few months ago. Some of you may remember that Fiona’s Irish Pub was in that corner space for a brief time. The building is very roomy with plenty of space to fan out and enough TV’s that one is always visible for viewing your favorite sporting event. 30 | February 2020

The bar is large and done in all dark wood giving a very manly feel to the establishment. As one would expect of a good Irish bar, the taps are stocked with the requisite Irish Guinness, Harp, Smithwick’s and Magner’s Cider along with 5 other domestic brands. They have an extensive choice of cans and bottles and the wine selection is quite adequate as well. They also pour a good mixed drink (as most Irish do) and the wine pour here is generous. The bar area also has high top tables as well as barrels throughout for your drinks or pints of Guinness when there’s a crowd. There isn’t a separate dining room per se so if you are sitting at a table you can still feel like you are part of the crowd. There is a room, however, that was once outside/sidewalk dining but it is now enclosed in the winter but appears to have the option to be opened during nice weather. The menu is quite extensive and boasts the heading “Irish Fare Done Right”! The Starters range from Wings and Chicken Quesadilla and Chicken

Tenders to Onion rings, Sausage Rolls, Fried Pickles, Irish Nachos and Loaded Fries. Knowing that this restaurant serves a lot of food on the plate, we decided to split the Sausage Rolls. Rather tasty Irish sausage cooked in a pastry puff served with spicy mustard. It was hot and good and a lot of food for a starter. We did finish it but realized we may not be able finish our main courses. The Soups and Salads consist of a creamy, home-style potato and leek soup, homemade chili and a “Soup of the Day”. Salads run from House and Caesar to Cobb and the Black and Blue - blackened New York Strip served over spring lettuce with crumbled blue cheese, grape tomatoes, red onions and cucumbers. I may try this the next time I’m here. The Irish Fare kicks off with Shepherd’s Pie, Chicken Pot Pie, Beef Stew, Fish and Chips, Corned Beef and Cabbage and a Traditional Irish Breakfast. My partner went with the stew on this trip. While they don’t bill it as “Irish” stew it is pretty close. It has a very flavorful gravy base with lots tender

beef chunks, carrots, onions and celery. It is served with mashed potatoes as opposed to having potatoes as part of the stew. And….it is a big portion and served with a slice of Irish soda bread. On our first visit to McNamara’s we both had the Chicken Pot Pie and it was fantastic, we both highly recommend it. The entrees include Pork Ribs, Pulled Pork Dinner, Salmon Dinner, Delmonico Ribeye and Rack of Lamb, and

a Pork Chop the day we were there. I ordered the Pork Chop with mashed potatoes and mixed vegetable of broccoli and sliced carrots. The vegetables were very fresh and not over cooked...just right. The potatoes were nice and creamy and the oversized pork chop was covered in a very tasty fruit chutney. I finished about half of the meal (see comment about the Sausage Rolls above) so was DINING OUT > PAGE 31

Old Town Crier


DINING OUT | FROM PAGE 30

able to enjoy the rest of it later in the week. McNamara’s also offers a selection of sandwiches including a Classic Club, Chicken Club, Pulled Pork, Beer-Battered Cod, Blackened Salmon, Tuna Melt and a Reuben. They also offer four burgers, the All-American, Rodeo, Breakfast and Stout. They also offer eight sides to round out any meal. We didn’t even think about approaching dessert but I imagine that the chocolate cake, apple pie ala mode, cheesecake and brownie sundae are all pretty tasty. McNamara’s also has daily specials and serves Brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 10 am – 2 pm, Trivia on Monday nights, Happy Hour runs 7 days a week from 3-7 pm, Live Music Friday and Saturday and Traditional Irish Night on Sundays. If you have a large appetite and are looking for a bit of Irish craic, McNamara’s will not disappoint. The dishes are well prepared and piled high. It is clear that McNamara’s takes pride in their dining choices. Enjoy an adult beverage or two and meal at an Irish restaurant this March and have a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day!

Old Town Crier

7 Glorious Ways to Celebrate

SATURDAY, MARCH 7

Alexandria’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade • Doors open at 9:00 AM Live music by The Fighting Jamesons & Pat Carroll 10:00 AM-4:00 PM • Irish Dancing throughout the day. Live music by The Fighting Jamesons & Rocky 9:00 PM-Close

TUESDAY, MARCH 10

Irish Trivia • 8:15 PM Live music by Pat Garvey – 8:30 PM-Close

JOIN US FOR OUR

WEEK LONG

ST. PATRICK’S CELEBRATION Corned Beef with Cabage ALL month long! St. Paay’s specials every day March 11-17 March 17th 25c beer @11am and MORE!

WEDNESDAY , MARCH 11

A Taste of Ireland • 5:00-9:00 PM Jameson whiskey with samplings of Irish cheeses and crackers • $20 participation fee Live music by Pat Garvey – 8:30 PM-Close

THURSDAY, MARCH 12

“Pour the Perfect Pint” Challenge • 7:00 PM Entrants must be 21 or older • Live music by Pat Garvey – 8:30 PM-Close

SATURDAY, MARCH 14

St. Practice Day • Doors Open at 11:00 AM Live music by Pat Carroll – 12:00 PM-4:00 PM • Live music by Pat Garvey and Both Sides – 9:00 PM-Close

SUNDAY, MARCH 15

Irish Brunch • 10:00 AM-3:00 PM Live music by Pat Carroll – 8:30 PM-Close

TUESDAY, MARCH 17

SHOOTERMCGEES .COM 5239 Duke Street Alexandria, VA 22304

Happy St. Patrick’s Day • Doors open at 8:00 AM • Live music starting at 10:00 AM Music by Poehemia, Pat Carroll, Pat Garvey & Both Sides. Irish Dancing throughout the day.

www.murphyspub.com • 703-548-1717

February 2020 | 31


BEHIND THE BAR

DANIEL O’CONNELL’S RESTAURANT & BAR 112 KING STREET OLD TOWN ALEXANDRIA 703-739-1124 DANIELOCONNELLS.COM

Paul pours the perfect pint of Guinness and whipped up the Emerald Island –an OC’s specialty.

Paul Smith

How did you get started in the bartending business? I started when I was 16 collecting glasses in the local bar then made my way up to behind the bar. It was good for my personality, a very social job which allows you to meet lots of new people and characters

In this day and age of craft cocktails, do you consider yourself a “good old fashioned” bartender or a “mixologist? I’m a good man for mixology unless ya ask me for a mojito on Paddy’s Day. I would say a bit of both, but with high volume at O’Connell’s it’s good to know both and execute quickly and correctly.

What is the cleverest line anyone has ever used to get you to give them a free drink? Clever lines won’t get ya a free drink. I’m not too fond of the words “a free drink”. If anyone were to say “could I have a free drink?” to me I would cringe at 32 | February 2020

the thought! Although, we do have a little room to buy a good customer a drink that would be rewarded with good conversation and banter.

What is your biggest bartender pet peeve? I’d have to say it’s the customer who be waving ya down like he’s guiding a plane into park then ya get to him and he’s not got a breeze what he wants.

What is the best and/or worst pickup line you have overheard at the bar? None! I feel like the auld pick up lying is a dying breed. They may be a few chairs down “liking” each other on a dating app. It is how it’s done these days.

All bartenders have good stories to tell about encounters with customers – please share one of your favorites with us. I met *Wayne Rooney in O’Connell’s about two BEHIND THE BAR > PAGE 33

Old Town Crier


BEHIND THE BAR FROM PAGE 32

Small Batch, Gourmet Hot Sauce

years ago and was a little star struck but couldn’t let on. He seemed like a good lad and was loving his few pints and he’s entitled too. He’s a Man(chester) United legend.

If you could sit down and have a drink with anyone in the world, past or present, who would that be? I would say *Conor McGregor “champ, champ”. The man came from nothing to everything in the space of a few years. I would love to sit down with a proper 12 and pick the man’s brain. *Wayne Rooney is an English professional footballer (soccer) player and Conor McGregor the Irish mixed martial arts champ.

Inspired by foods found in cities across America with a toast to their craft brews, wines, and spirits

Cajun Dew

MARCH

Bayou Inspired

LAMB SHANK MONTH!

Inca Gold Cajun Dew is the perfect blend of Cayenne and Habenero peppers along with garlic, vinegar and salt. Simple and flavorful.

You can come in and trade witticisms with Paul Thursday through Monday nights at the main bar. If you would like to see your favorite mixologist featured in this space, please send contact information to office@ oldtowncrier.com.

We apply the “Hurricane Category Heat Index”

FatCityKitchen.com 330 S. Pickett Street | (703) 685-9172

Spring is just around the corner. Try our new menu March 23

Inca Gold combines the unique flavors of South American Peppers with just the right amount of punch.

Available for purchase online at hurricanebobs.com or at the Old Town Store and fine restaurants including Bonefish Grill, The Columbia Firehouse, Daniel O’Connell’s, Union Street Public House, and Virtue Feed & Grain.

“A Washington Post Capitol Cuisine Favorite” The Very Best Alexandria has to offer in the Heart of Historic Old Town Famous for our She Crab Soup, Steaks and Crab Cakes

Thank you for voting in George Washington’s Cherry Challage.

1st Place

Appetizer and Dessert!

Best Brunch in Old Town Saturday & Sunday 9am- 4pm

7966 Fort Hunt Road

Call 703-347-7545 RiverBendBistro.com Old Town Crier

February 2020 | 33


DINING GUIDE AMERICAN

AUGIE’S MUSSEL HOUSE 1106 King Street 703.721.3970 BILBO BAGGINS 208 Queen St. 703-683-0300 BLACKWALL HITCH 5 Cameron St. 703-739-6090 CAFE 44 44 Canal Center 571-800-6644 CARLYLE CLUB 411 John Carlyle St. 703-549-8957 CHADWICKS 203 Strand St. 703-836-4442 CHART HOUSE One Cameron St. 703-684-5080 CITY KITCHEN 330 South Pickett St. 703-685-9172 fatcitykitchen.com COLUMBIA FIREHOUSE 109 S. St. Asaph St. 703-683-1776 EVENING STAR CAFÉ 2000 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-549-5051 EXECUTIVE DINER & CAFE 1400 Duke Street 703-299-0894 FIN & HOOF 801 N. Saint Asaph St. 703-836-4700 FIVE GUYS 725 King St. 703-549-7991 FOSTERS GRILLE 2004 Eisenhower Ave. 703-725-1342 GADSBYS TAVERN 138 N. Royal St. 703-548-1288 GRATEFUL KITCHEN 727 N. Henry Street HARD TIMES CAFE 1404 King St. 703-837-0050 HEN QUARTER 1404 King St. 703-684-6969 HUMMINGBIRD 220 South Union Street 703-566-1355 JACKS PLACE 222 North Lee St. 703-684-0372 JACKSON 20 480 King St. 703-842-2790 JAVA GRILL 611 King Street 571-431-7631 JOE THEISMANNS 1800 Diagonal Rd. 703-739-0777 JUNCTION BAKERY & BISTRO 1508 Mount Vernon Avenue Alexandria 703-436-0025 34 | February 2020

LAPORTAS 1600 Duke St. 703-683-6313

THE LIGHT HORSE 715 King Street 703-549-0533 LIVE OAK 1603 Commonwealth Ave. 571-312-0402 LORI'S TABLE 1028 King Street 703-549-5545 LOST DOG CAFE 808 North Henry St. 571-970-6511 MACKIE’S BAR AND GRILL 907 King St. 703-684-3288 mackiesbarandgrill.com MAGNOLIA’S ON KING 703 King St. 703-838-9090 MAJESTIC CAFÉ 911 King St. 703-837-9117 MASON SOCIAL 728 Henry Street 703-548-8800 mason-social.com MOUNT VERNON INN Mount Vernon, Va 703-780-0011 MURPHYS IRISH PUB 713 King St. 703-548-1717 murphyspub.com MYRON MIXON PITMASTER BBQ 220 North Lee St. 703-535-3340 NECTAR COFFEE & WINE BISTRO 106 Hume Avenue 571-431-6150 NORTHSIDE 1O 10 East Glebe Rd. 703-888-0032 OCONNELLS RESTAURANT & BAR 112 King St. 703-739-1124 PORK BARREL BBQ 2312 Mount Vernon Ave. 703-822-5699 THE PEOPLES DRUG 103 N. Alfred Street 571-257-8851 RAMPARTS 1700 Fern St. 703-998-6616 rampartstavern.com RIVER BEND BISTRO 7966 Fort Hunt Rd. Hollin Hall Shopping Center 703-347-7545 riverbendbistro.com ROCK IT GRILL 1319 King St. 703-739-2274 RT's RESTAURANT 3804 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-684-6010 rtsrestaurant.com SAMUEL BECKETTS IRISH GASTRO PUB 2800 S. Randolph St. Villages of Shirlington 703-379-0122

SHOOTER MCGEES 5239 Duke St. 703-751-9266 SMOKING KOW BBQ 3250 Duke Sttreet 703-888-2649 SONOMA CELLAR 207 King St. 703-966-3550 SOUTH BLOCK 106 N. Lee Street 703-465-8423 SOUTHSIDE 815 815 S. Washington St. 703-836-6222 SWEETGREEN 823 King St. 571-319-0192 SWEET FIRE DONNA'S BBQ & HOPS 510 John Carlyle Street 571-312-7960 T.J. STONES GRILL HOUSE & TAP ROOM 608 Montgomery St. 703-548-1004 tjstones.com UNION STREET PUBLIC HOUSE 121 South Union St. 703-548-1785 unionstreetpublichouse.com VERMILLION 1120 King St. 703-684-9669 VIRTUE GRAIN & FEED 106 South Union St. 571-970-3669 VOLA’S DOCKSIDE GRILL & THE HI-TIDE LOUNGE 101 North Union St. 703-935-8890 THE WAREHOUSE BAR & GRILL 214 King St. 703-683-6868 warehouseoldtown.com ASIAN

ASIAN BISTRO 809 King St. 703-836-1515 MALAYA 1019 King St. 703-519-3710 MAI THAI 9 King St. 703-548-0600 NASIME 1209 King St. 703-548-1848 STREETS MARKET AND CAFE 3108 Mt. Vernon Ave. 571-431-6810 THAILAND ROYAL 801 N. Fairfax St. 703 535-6622 TOKYO JAPANESE STEAKHOUSE 66 Canal Center Plaza 703-683-8878 CAPHE BANH MI VIETNAMESE 407 Cameron St. 703-549-0800 KAI ZEN TAVERN 1901 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-836-1212 THE SUSHI BAR 2312 Mount Vernon Avenue 571-257-3232

CONTINENTAL

BRABO by Robert Weidmaier 1600 King St. 703-894-3440 BRABO TASTING ROOM 1600 King St. 703-894-5252 CEDAR KNOLL GW Parkway at Lucia Ln. 703-780-3665 OLD HOUSE COSMOPOLITAN 1024 Cameron Street 703-717-9361 TEMPO 4231 Duke St. 703-370-7900 temporestaurant.com VILLAGE BRAUHAUS 710 King Street 703-888-1951 villagebrauhaus.com FRENCH

BASTILLE 606 N. Fayette St. 703-519-3776 bastillerestaurant.com BISTRO SANCERRE FRENCH 1755 Duke Street LE REFUGE 127 N. Washington St. 703-548-4661 FONTAINES CAFFE & CREPERIE 119 S. Royal St. 703-535-8151 LA MADELEINE 500 King St. 703-729-2854 TWO NINETEEN RESTAURANT 219 King St. 703-549-1141 ITALIAN BUGSYS PIZZA RESTAURANT 111 King St. 703-683-0313 FACCIA LUNA 823 S. Washington St. 703-838-5998 HANK & MIMI'S PIZZA AND PASTA 600 Montgomery Ave. 571-312-4117 IL PORTO RESTAURANT 121 King St. 703-836-8833

LANDINI BROTHERS 115 King St. 703-836-8404 landinibrothers.com LENA’S WOOD-FIRED PIZZA & TAP 401 East Braddock Rd. 703-960-1086 MIA'S ITALIAN KITCHEN 100 King Street 703-997-5300 MICHAEL’S LITTLE ITALY 305 S. Washington St. 703-548-9338 PARADISO 124 King St. 703-683-5330 PINES OF FLORENCE 1300 King St. 703-549-1796 RED ROCKS FIREBRICK PIZZA 904 King St. 703-717-9873

MEDITERRANEAN

LA TASCA 607 King St. 703-299-9810 TAVERNA CRETEKOU 818 King St. 703-548-8688 tavernacretekou.com PITA HOUSE 719 King St. 703-684-9194 DELIAS MEDITERRANEAN GRILL 209 Swamp Fox Rd. 703-329-0006 VASO'S MEDITERRANEAN BISTRO 1118 King Street 703-566-2720 VASO'S KITCHEN 1225 Powhatan Street 703-548-2747 SEAFOOD

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LET’S EAT

CHARLES OPPMAN

Irish Stew

S

ince St. Patrick’s Day is upon us, I thought it would be appropriate to suggest that quintessential Irish dish— Irish Stew. There isn’t just one recipe for Irish stew (Irish: stobhach or stobhach Gaelach). Recipes can vary from home to home or region to region, but all are agreed that the meat must be lamb—mutton can be used, but this is meat from an older sheep and is less tender, fattier and has a stronger flavor. Another point of agreement is that the dish must include at least onions and potatoes. Many are adamant that carrots and celery are a must. The purist will insist it must also contain pearl barley, which acts as a thickening agent. The meat used is not the best cuts of lamb, but the cheaper ones such as shoulder, leg or shank. This famous meat stew is different than most in that the meat is not browned. In French culinary parlance, it can be cooked blanquette style. Pretty much the only difference between Irish stew and the beef stew Americans are familiar with is the meat itself.

Ingredients 1 tablespoon olive oil 2 pounds boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces 1/2 salt 1/2 ground black pepper 2 bay leaves 1 large onion, diced 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch sections 1/2 cup pearl barley (optional) 4 cups beef broth, canned is acceptable 3 large red potatoes, peeled and quartered 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley for garnish

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Directions Heat oil over high heat in a large stockpot or Dutch oven. Add lamb pieces and cook over medium heat, stirring gently, but do not allow to brown. Season with salt and pepper. Add onions, bay leaves and beef broth. Cover and simmer over low heat until meat is slightly tender, but still undone—approximately 20-30 minutes. Add the carrots, potatoes and barley. Cover all ingredients with beef broth. Replace lid and cook until meat and veggies are fork tender—approximately 20-30 minutes. Stir in parsley and rosemary. Taste again for salt and pepper; adjust as necessary. Serve piping hot in bowls garnished with sprig of fresh parsley or rosemary. Serve with hearty brown bread and butter.

(Best consumed with a pint of Guinness.)

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GRAPEVINE

NANCY BAUER

Luck, Love, and Life:

Christine Vrooman Brings Her Whole Heart to Ankida Ridge Vineyards

T

Christine Vrooman, her son and Bella. ORDERS YOURS

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hough serendipity powered much of the fruition of Ankida Ridge Vineyards, a central Virginia winery known as much for its fiery sunset views as for its rare-for-Virginia pinot noir, spiritual connections will take it into the future, if owner Christine Vrooman has her way. And she will. First, the serendipity. When Christine and her husband, Virginia Beach veterinarian Dennis Vrooman, pondered how to come up with $20,000 to bring electricity to their off-the-grid mountain property in Amherst, about an hour south of Charlottesville, the local power company knocked on their door—would they be willing to grant a right-of-way to install an emergency cell tower? Electricity would come to the mountain with the tower—no charge. Later, when an excavator they’d hired

to clear land for a new house took it upon himself to bulldoze trees from an additional large tract – “because it seemed like it might be good for something” – he created a distressingly bare patch that forced lots of creative thinking about the best way to fill it back in—thinking that ultimately led to the Vroomans’ first vineyard. When Dennis Vrooman’s animal hospital in Virginia Beach fell victim to the city’s road expansion plan, the generous compensation paid for the expensive planting of baby vines on a rocky slope. And when the couple’s son, Nathan, decided Denver wasn’t the place for him after all, and that winemaking sounded like a better way to live his life, the final piece was in place. (It didn’t hurt that soon thereafter, GRAPEVINE > PAGE 40

Your Guide to ountr y Virginia Wine C

My Thirtieth Column, and A New Quest aps is what I love about Virginia Wine Country, and about new quests – the hope, the surprises, the Winery M Christine Vrooman’s story -off lists eck Ch deepening connectionne to yourselfrieand others, and the new paths that open just as you begin to wonder is pruning all there is to life? s top wi s & wine Virginia’scolumn s My thirtieth for the Old Town Crier will be my final little love note to the OTC’s legion of loyal readers, but my rie ne wi Dog-friendly s winerie connectionFatomiVirginia Country continues through my website site and app (Virginia Wine in My Pocket), and my bi-annual ly-friendlyWine more! + muchTravel book, Virginia Wine Journal. de If because ofipp mying columns a new little winery that made you feel welcome, a backroad that made you feel mo Cofound with Proyou’ve Get FREE sh ify that made you feel warm and fuzzy, I’ll consider it time well spent. op Sh m fro R adventurous, or a new-to-you wine RIE OLDTOWNC t.myshopify.com) y-pockeinfatuated -in-m become with the quests that women step up to in midlife, just as you think they’d start more sitting rginia-wineI’ve (viRecently, s: dive into their stories, both on my blog, HurryUpGirl.com and in a new book. If you are or rie down. So my new path will be a deep ne wi these select Or pick one up at istedstory, please follow along. Tw o Tw know a woman who loves a good quest , rds eya s, Magnolia Vin Pearmund Cellar t Rose Winery, Desertrail, nery, Wi ada I’ll never give up the wine though, and I hope someday our paths cross out there. I’d love to hear your story, too. Cheers. rm Na y, Posts Winer Shade Vineyard y, Sassafras

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38 | February 2020

Old Town Crier


EXPLORING VA WINES

DOUG FABBIOLI

Tannat | The Big Daddy Wine

S

o Tannat seems to be on my calendar a bit more than usual this month. Recently I participated in a tasting of Tannat’s from across the world with a few other winemakers. Also, I have been asked to present our 2015 Tannat at The Eastern Wine Exposition in Lancaster, PA. So, as these events have come together, it only makes sense that I write a bit more about this rising grape varietal. Tannat is a red grape varietal that has its roots in the Southwestern region of France, the Basque region. It is well known for its thick skins on the vine that translates to firmly structured tannins and deep color in the glass. Uruguay has adopted this grape as its national varietal, using it to make Rosé, light styled reds, full bodied reds as well as port styled wines. Its roots in Virginia can be traced back to our maverick, Dennis Horton and his wife Sharon, who planted well over 150 different varietals to help decide which would be best for our climate. Dr. Tony Wolf of Virginia Tech had his hand in the mix as well through longer term experiments, trials and studies. Over the years, Tannat wines from a number of Virginia wineries have had great showings in our statewide competitions as well as on the west coast. Personally, I have leaned on Tannat over the years to be the big daddy wine in the lineup. With a little blending and some judicious choices of barrels, I am able to build layers of flavors as well as flesh out the aromatics and finish of the wine. Tannat tends to have a very firm middle and finish that stops rather abruptly, so the blending and barrel choices can really help the wine finish up. My friend Mark Malick from Maggie Malick Wine Cave and grape grower from way back has always been impressed with Tannat. He invited a number of us over to his home to taste a wide variety of Tannats. I was only able to stay through about 2/3’s of the wines, but I felt Virginia showed quite well among these wines. Some wines were of a softer style, while others showed the weight and structure that Tannat has been known for. In Lancaster, I will be presenting Tannat to grape growers, winemakers and other industry folks attending my session at the Exposition. This will be a significantly more “formal” tasting than what Mark put together. I am finishing up my PowerPoint presentation now. I am suggesting that on the right site, Tannat can be an important player in a functioning and sustainable vineyard and winery operation. Some years it produces more fruit than others, but overall this is a grape that will survive our challenging years and thrive in our average years. It can also be a great blender for other red wines that need a little shot of color and body. So you may seriously consider Tannat to plant or consume, but it doesn’t need to be that serious. Fabbioli is the proprietor and winemaker at Fabbioli Vineyards and Winery in Loudoun County, VA. Old Town Crier

The Author tasting Tannat.

Photo by Matt Fitzsimmons

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Nathan met Stinson Vineyards’ Rachel Stinson, future winemaker and his future wife, in wine school.) “I can’t say I’m living the life I dreamed of, because I never dreamed of this,” says Christine Vrooman with a laugh, while talking about the path that led her to become the owner of a boutique winery. “I feel like I’m doing exactly what I want. I get to live the life I want to live. We have a little bit of income from retirement, and we have some [rental] cottage income, and I can do what I want to do.” The Vroomans’ winery came out of the gate like a shot in 2012, gaining immediate acclaim for their pinot noir from wine writers and appreciators both inside and outside of Virginia. One wine shop in Charlottesville summed it up this way: ”Yes, Virginia, there is good local pinot noir! Ankida Ridge is the most exciting Virginia winery in the last several years for one simple reason: they make a great Pinot Noir. Pinot Noir has been called the “heartbreak grape” because it’s famously hard to grow, especially in Virginia. Well, dry your eyes, because Ankida Ridge has done the impossible. Their Chard[onnay] and Pinot recently wowed wine critics from the New York Times and the Washington Post as well as famed British wine writer Jancis Robinson.” From the beginning, there have been struggles and adjustments. Christine says, “We wanted to be organic and biodynamic. We did that for about a year and a half, and then started seeing little brown spots on the leaves. We found out it was black rot. We thought we’d address it by just pulling off the affected leaves. We were hauling dozens of bag loads of leaves down to the dump. Usually in the first few years of a vine’s growth [before the grapes become viable for wine], you remove the grapes, but we left some on just to see what it would taste like, and at the end of the season they were shriveled up black berries, totally consumed by black rot.” While the winery now sprays a synthetic fungicide “as minimally as possible,” Christine says they didn’t give up on all the other things that are so important, such

as decoctions—or natural medicinal “teas” used on grapevines--and composting, and the use of animals—dogs, cats, sheep—to maintain vineyard and farm health and order. There was never a master plan for what Christine Vrooman is doing in Amherst. She loves the creation process, and has now begun viewing the last decade as perhaps the beginning, rather than the end, of a surprising phase of her life. “As we go along, I’m recognizing that this whole vineyard and winery was not an end in itself,” she says. “But rather a means to an end. And that end continues to evolve.” She continues, “What I love more than anything is when people come up here--and if we didn’t have the winery that wouldn’t happen--but for people to come up here and feel touched and inspired from just being in this place, being in nature, and somehow sensing the energy that is up here. Seeing the sheep grazing and our dog Luciano running around, and sipping wine, and I want them to have a soulful experience here. Sort of a spiritual experience.” Christine explains it as a “connectedness”. She says, “The spark of life that is in us, and that connectedness that everybody has, and in nature, it’s imbued here.” Now the powerful woman behind Ankida Ridge Vineyards is thinking how to get more people to come up to the mountain to connect in that way. “I’m thinking of creating artisan nature workshops during the week,” she says. “Working with area B&Bs and having people come out on a Sunday evening, and then on Monday morning we do Tai Chi and tea on the winery deck. Something to connect them to the space. Each four-day week can be different: photography, plein air painting, maybe psychology, maybe shinrinyoku, a Japanese practice that translates to ‘forest bathing’. Pottery. The list is endless. And then everybody goes home connected to themselves, more at peace with themselves, with a sense of purpose in their lives, and then they spread that little element of joy – which is my mantra – into their little corner of the world.” Old Town Crier


FITNESS

S

pring is on its way. The days are getting longer and warmer and everything is waking up from winter. With springtime comes a new energy to evaluate and recommit to fitness plans. It is almost like a second shot at a New Year’s resolution. Maybe you need to set some new goals, or even start over completely. Here are a few ways to tweak your workout and keep your fitness moving in the right direction.

Train Smarter If you are looking for an allin-one training tool, check out the TRX Suspension System. It is portable, versatile and makes the most out of a bodyweight workout. Because of the suspension, you must use your core to stabilize and therefore work more than one muscle group at a time. With the TRX system you can get a workout done in as little as twenty minutes. The TRX system is designed for all fitness levels from novice to elite. It comes with a workout guide and there are many ways to modify the exercises whether you are just starting out, or are looking to bring your workout to a new level. It really is an all-in-one workout. Staying with the idea of a portable workout, another great piece of equipment is an exercise band. They are inexpensive, compact, and you can carry them almost anywhere. Try this; from either a seated or standing position, pull a band up around your thighs, slowly pull your legs apart at the knees. This works both inner and outer thigh muscles. Start with three sets of ten.

Back Up Your Workout You know how to train your abs, but what many forget is how important it is to strengthen your entire back. By adding a few exercises that work to improve back strength and stability you will be doing your core a big favor. Try this. Starting on your hands and knees, slowly raise your opposite arm and leg until your body forms a straight line Old Town Crier

NICOLE FLANAGAN

RE-DO YOUR ROUTINE from fingertips to heel. Pause then return hands and knees to starting position. Do three sets of fifteen to twenty. Let’s talk about the ab routine. If it typically consists of things like sit-ups and V-crunches than it may be time to rethink your core workout. You have five lumbar vertebrae, and each one gives you about seven to nine degrees of motion, for a total of forty-five degrees. That means to truly work your core you need to stay between zero degrees (like a plank) and forty-five degrees (like a crunch). From forty-five degrees to a full sit-up, you’re engaging your hip flexors, which attach directly to your lumbar spine. Too many reps will not only make your hip muscles sore, but your lower back will start to hurt as well. Haircuts $15 Shampoo, Cut & Blow Dry $18 (extra charge for long hair) Scissors Cut $17+up Color $43+up Permanent $45+up (including haircut & conditioner)

Eat and Drink Well Workouts cause muscle damage, it’s how muscles repair that makes them stronger. If all you do is break down muscle cells, you are on the path to injury. The first ten minutes post workout is the time to replenish those cells so they can begin to repair and be ready to work out again. You don’t have to run out and grab a sandwich right after a workout, but something light, like a banana and peanut butter or a protein shake, will help. Lastly, drink plenty of water. Water is one of the most underrated nutrients; we often forget just how much too much or too little water can affect a workout. Most people do not drink enough water. When you are dehydrated your workout suffers. The best way to make sure you are drinking

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enough water is to bring a water bottle with you. Drink plenty of water throughout the day and during and after workouts. If you start to feel thirsty, you are already a little dehydrated. Whether you needed a full

revamp of your workout or just a few minor adjustments, now is the time to get your fitness routine back on track. With spring just around the corner it’s a great time to find some new motivation.

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GENEVIEVE LEFRANC

FIRST BLUSH

L

et’s face it gals, it’s a tough world out there and who couldn’t benefit from a few tricks and tools that make our beauty routines (and lives) easier. We all want to look our best and be able to rely on tools that get the job done quickly and effectively. With a beauty arsenal of reliable weapons, you can face each day with confidence knowing you possess the musthaves to pull off any great look.

around for a tool set that will get the job done right. You can find professional quality, affordable sets with a full array of tools and most come with a step-by-step guide to ensure a perfect paint job. By deciding to DIY your mani/ pedi, you can afford that new pair of sandals you’ve been dying to buy and show off your handiwork at the same time. Even if you’re not a nail polish kinda gal, keep a nail file on hand for unexpected breaks or tears. In a pinch, you can use a closed zipper as a file! A little crude, but it works!

Tweezer You may think there is little difference between the drug store tweezer you discovered in the back of a messy drawer and the precision options praised by beauty editors. But quality makes all the difference. Tweezerman is the Cadillac of tweezers and relatively inexpensive when you consider its unmatched performance and precision. Its sharp steel tips are hand-filed and grab the hair every time. It comes in different shapes, sizes and styles, some with fun patterns to complement your style. And here’s a bonus - Tweezerman will sharpen your tweezer when it becomes dulled from everyday use at no cost! This coveted favorite pays for itself, so invest! Nothing frames your face better than a set of neatly groomed, excellently manicured brows.

Eyelash curler Short of a solid eight hours in dreamland, nothing makes you look more awake or brighteyed than curled eyelashes. Even if you have absolutely no time to throw on makeup, curling your eyelashes takes seconds and gives you a flirtatious look that lasts all day. Don’t feel like swiping on the mascara? No problem—a pair of curled lashes makes your peepers pop. Invest in a quality tool to make your curl last. The brand adored by makeup artists and professionals is Shu Uemura. It yields a perfect curl with unmatched precision, accentuating even the smallest lashes. This top performer lifts lashes to new heights with exceptional results and curls your lashes quickly with little 42 | February 2020

Clear nail polish

BEAUTY ARSENAL ESSENTIALS pressure or tugging. After all, who has successfully batted their eyelashes at the cute Starbucks guy without curling them first?

Brush set This one almost goes without saying. Your makeup is only as good as the tools with which you apply it, so this is not the place to cut corners. Good makeup brushes are expensive, but will outlast their cheap cousins by a long shot and yield a noticeable difference in the application of your makeup. Whether you collect them individually or buy a set, do some research about which type works best for you. Synthetic brushes are easy to clean and available in antibacterial versions, while animal brushes last but will cost you. The three brushes every woman should possess are eyeshadow, powder and blush. Add different brushes to your collection over time. Trust me, they’re worth it!

Good hair tools The same goes for hair tools—your hair will only look as good as the tools you use

to maintain and style it. Every woman should have a decent hair dryer and hairbrush. Whether you’re willing to break the bank or prefer to shop around for cheaper alternatives, every good hair dryer should have multiple heat and speed settings with 1800 watt power or higher. Diffusers and nozzle attachments are added bonuses. I use my hairdryer as much to dry my locks as for handy beauty tricks. When you don’t have the time to allow justpainted nails to fully dry, use your hairdryer to speed things along! Keep it on a low, cool setting so as not to distort the polish from the dryer’s heat or blast of air. If you curl or flat iron your hair, invest in a solid, ceramic iron. As for hairbrushes, the champion of mane tamers is the Mason Pearson, originated in 1885. These rubber-cushioned brushes are handmade with the best materials to care for your tresses. Regular brushing conditions and cleans your hair and stimulates the scalp while imparting suppleness and healthy sheen. Mason Pearson’s quality simply cannot be matched and is available in boar hair and nylon bristles.

Always use a wide-tooth comb on wet hair, never brush it!

Q-tips If I could only have one “beauty tool” in my bag at all times, it would be the Q-Tip. It’s your cheap and versatile beauty workhorse. Stash them in your desk, purse and car— you’ll thank me! Q-Tips fix mascara smudges, correct makeup mistakes, function as an applicator for lipstick, gloss, and shadow, and are perfect for removing unsightly clumps of makeup buildup from the inner corners of your eyes. Correct polish slip-ups with Q-Tips while the color is still wet. Your hands and feet will look like they were done professionally. And here’s a bonus: run an oil-soaked Q-Tip along sticky, stubborn zippers. The oil acts as a lubricant making the teeth open and close with ease.

Mani/pedi tool set As much as I love indulging in a professional mani/pedi, I often kick myself for indulging in something that chips three days later! Manicures and pedicures are relatively simple to perform at home, so shop

Not only does slapping on a coat of the stuff instantly give dull, naked nails a shiny, sophisticated polish, this unassuming little bottle will wow you with its versatility. Everyone knows the helpless feeling when you spot the start of a run in your stockings. That little hole that, with your luck, you notice just as you’re walking into that all-important job interview. A dab of clear polish will stop the run dead in its tracks. Similarly, you can prevent frayed fabric from unraveling at cuffs and hems by brushing on a swipe of the clear goo. My favorite trick is applying it to inexpensive costume jewelry to keep it sparkling clean and free of tarnish. And remember, storing polish of any color in the fridge keeps it fresher longer!

Vaseline It’s cheap, it’s versatile, it’s amazing! Buy a small jar and stash it in your bag. It will last forever and you’ll be surprised how often you pull it out for one reason or another. Vaseline is an excellent moisturizer, especially in winter months when dry skin is at its worst. Use it as hand cream, to sooth rough cuticles, as lip balm, or to tame unruly brows. Put a thin coat on eyelashes before bed. It promotes longer, thicker lashes over time. When applied at perfume points before spritzing, Vaseline maintains the scent longer. In a pinch, Vaseline will work as a makeup remover, too. Old Town Crier


FROM THE TRAINER

M

arch is here and I hope you are still excited about your exercise routine. It’s been two months since the start of the New Year and not to mention those new fitness resolutions. Motivation levels tend to fizzle out during the month of March, especially once your spring break vacations are over. I realize that not everyone is

RYAN UNVERZAGT

motivated in the same way or by the same things. Therefore, staying motivated can be a challenging task. I would like to share a few ways to boost your commitment toward exercise.

Workout with a Buddy Find someone to train with who has similar goals. You will be less likely to ditch out on a workout if you know

that somebody else will be expecting you to be there. It’s actually safer to exercise with a friend because you will have a spotter for resistance training and a ---- during cardio training. In the worst case scenario, your buddy can assist you should any injuries happen. Try the partner exercises that I discussed in last month’s issue of the Old Town Crier.

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Old Town Crier

Gather Social Support

Re-Evaluate Your Goals

Besides working out with a buddy, let family and friends know that you need their support to keep you motivated. Schedule weekly meetings with them to talk about how your exercise program is going, what you have accomplished for the week, and how it makes you feel when you finish a workout. Focus more on the positives and less on the negatives. Who knows, you just might be able to inspire others in your support group to start exercising by being a role model with your success!

It is normal to encounter bumps in the road. You should expect them. Find a reason WHY you want to exercise. There should be more meaning behind your goals than the typical “I want to lose weight” or “Because my doctor said I need to exercise”. Both are legitimate reasons to exercise, but they don’t state the true meaning. For example, “I want to lose weight because it will make me feel more confident” or “My doctor says I need to exercise because I could end up having a heart attack someday. I want to watch my children and grandchildren grow up.” These statements are more meaningful and can help you stay focused on the WHY of exercise.

Change Your Workouts Staleness and loss of interest in your workouts can be a result of doing the same old thing for too long. If your workout consists of riding the stationary bike for 30 minutes at a resistance level of 8, try riding hills or choose intervals for a change. For example, pedal at an easier resistance (5) for the first couple of minutes at a rate of 75 RPMs, then increase the resistance (10-15) for 10-15 seconds. Try to keep your pedaling pace within ten RPMs from your target (75), and then bring the resistance back down to recover. Repeat this every minute for 30 minutes. If you are used to lifting the same amount of weights for two sets of 15 reps while resistance training, try increasing the weight and decreasing the repetitions or just the opposite. Better yet, hire a personal trainer to show you how to safely perform new exercises!

As a personal trainer, I find that keeping people motivated is one of the most challenging aspects in the fitness industry. It’s easy to lose sight of why you should exercise. Re-evaluating your goals, changing up your workouts, gathering social support, and working out with a buddy can help boost your motivation levels and commitment to exercise. Unverzagt holds Bachelor of Science degree in Wellness Management from Black Hills State University. He is a certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist through the National Strength & Conditioning Association and a Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer through the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography. February 2020 | 43


SPIRITUAL RENAISSANCE PEGGIE ARVIDSON

This Spring… Just Get Started!

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h sweet Spring. You approach as a gift after the cold and wet of winter. No matter where you live you find that there is an ebb and flow to Mother Nature. So, with Spring arriving full of blossoms and bugs and sneezes is a welcome reminder of the consistency of being alive. Winter is the reminder that everything must end in order to begin again. Spring is the not-so-subtle reminder to celebrate the surprises and fun of starting over. Why is it then that we avoid starting over? No one relishes being a beginner. Whether you’re lingering in an unfulfilling job, a house that you’ve outgrown (or it’s outgrown you) or a city that you hate, odds are you’re hanging on because you hate the idea of starting over. Is there fear in beginning? Probably. Starting something new brings on lots of fear for me – fear of looking silly, fear of failing, fear of not fitting in or not being able to figure out whatever it is that I’m contemplating, and that is tied to the fact that I want to be an expert, all the time, right away. Lucky me – I’m onto my ego’s tricks and try not to fall for the whining and fears and simply face the fact that I’m going to have to be a beginner if I’m going to do something that’s purposeful (and often fun). I was talking with a coworker (at a job that was brand new to me just a year ago!) about the way that kids can just have a friend for a day, or even 44 | February 2020

an event. They know how to begin things, without worrying about looking silly and as a result they seem to have a ton more fun than I do when I go out. My friend’s daughter simply walks up to another at a party and asks, “Do you want to be friends?” Mind you, this child is not particularly outgoing when it comes to grown-ups and sure I’m a little miffed that she’s never asked me to be her friend. Still I’m inspired by her ability to start out new, every time she goes to a new event with her peers. The event ends and she’s back to her sweet family, not lamenting that the friendship is “over” or didn’t work out the way she’d anticipated, just tired and often jacked up on candy. What if I (and you) could do that? Start something new without worrying about how it’s going to end before we even start? Tell me I’m not the only person who has ever written out 10 different possible outcomes before I’ve even started something new. Not being four years old, we do have a few other practicalities to focus on daily – it’s logical that finding a new job should encompass some understanding of what’s expected for you and your employer to get out of it. And I’m not advocating you end a steady job without a new one in hand, I am encouraging you to think about leaping into a new career if it’s something you’ve always wanted to do. With record low unemployment,

companies are looking for talent outside of “normal” venues – this just may be the perfect time for you to explore a new field that’s always been an interest. If you have the ability to start out as a beginner, go ahead. Fear of starting a new career may masquerade as your ego not wanting to lose a perk or two (prestige you’ve worked hard to earn, or maybe a cushy corner office) however the real issue may be that you’re going to need to step back, ask for help and learn to begin again. If you don’t have the

financial backing to sustain a lower income (either because you’re starting lower in the corporate hierarchy or because you’re entering a field that simply isn’t as lucrative as the one you’re leaving) why not decide to practice being a beginner with financial planning and budgeting so you can make your dream of your new job come true down the pike? The same fears and practices fall in if you want to move across the country or start

anything else that’s new, and often uncomfortable. I have friends that told me they nearly gave up their dream of learning the guitar because of the callouses they were getting on their fingers while pushing the strings on the frets. While they’ll not be playing sold out stadiums anytime soon – they are happy they stuck with the practice and can look back over the years and feel the sense of accomplishment that only comes from beginning!

Are you at a crossroads and need to make some serious decisions? If you’re feeling stuck at work, in love or in general, it can feel impossible to get out of your own way. Peggie helps you assess your situation, using ancient and modern tools to help you move forward with a specific plan of action. Private Sessions are available by phone or Skype.

PeggieArvidson.com peggieParvidson@gmail.com Old Town Crier


GO FISH

STEVE CHACONAS

population and popularity of largemouth bass as a game fish led to the Potomac becoming a major stop for professional bass tournament tours. Regional and local bass organizations put at least one Potomac stop a year on their tournament schedules. Fishing enthusiasts from all over the country crowded local anglers who were unhappy

motion a 2-year debate that the three jurisdictions should coordinate their efforts and conduct collective analysis of the state of the river. They met a few times toward the end of 2019 to establish data needs and guidelines.To monitor the fishery, the jurisdictions agreed to generate a combined assessment. The strategy

releases will inform the general public about the project to help increase reporting rates. Anglers can report tag numbers, date of capture, size of fish, and other details of interest throughout the year to tournament organizers and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries 1-804367-2925.

The River Runs Through It

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he Tidal Potomac River largemouth bass fishery is the most popular in the Mid-Atlantic region and the United States. In its 63 mile run from Washington, DC to the Chesapeake Bay, the Potomac runs through 3 jurisdictions, 4 including the Potomac River Fisheries Commission. Over several decades of fisheries management, each state and DC have run their own programs. Recently, they’ve come to the conclusion that fish swim, without notice, through each. Independent studies, analysis, and management have been done with little or no cooperation. This began to change with the invasion of the Northern Snakehead. When snakeheads were discovered in the Potomac in 2004, there was a scramble to figure out how they got there, their impact, and how Old Town Crier

to manage their population. The Federal Government got into the act and, for a while, all worked together on a plan of action. During this period, Virginia took a closer look at the largemouth bass population as an overlap study. Until then, Maryland ran regular bass studies. DC also concurrently obtained their own data. Many factors influence fish populations. But there are even more influences on data outcomes. Everything from weather, amounts of submerged aquatic vegetation and time of year and frequency of the data collection contribute to the results. In 2014 the Potomac River Fisheries Commission brought all three together to consider sharing information. Largemouth Bass were introduced to Potomac River in late 1800’s to help feed people of DC and Baltimore after the Civil War. Since the 1970s the

with the new-found fame and fishing pressure. By the late 1990s, anglers reported tougher fishing conditions. Some blamed incessant tournament fishing events lined up from March into October with several events throughout the winter months as well. Substantiating the perceived decline for local anglers, Maryland DNR fish surveys showed a sharp drop in fish populations. However, for the same period, VA and DC showed stable populations. This was the beginning of the issue as Maryland considered fishing restrictions, which DC and VA felt unnecessary. Data collection procedures of MD, VA and DC varied as to time of year, and collection and analysis methodology. Each jurisdiction was content with their procedures, but management and regulation, dependent on data results, created friction not only among the jurisdictions but also with anglers. This dilemma sent into

is to better estimate stock, quality, and preferred sizes of largemouth bass. Anglers can participate with creel surveys and by reporting recapture of tagged fish. Agencies will cooperatively monitor the population and size of largemouth bass. The Potomac River Fisheries Commission and the general public will receive the unified assessment every three years. Specifically each jurisdiction will report their population and size surveys by identifying the numbers of bass over 200mm (about 8 inches), quality bass over 305mm (12 inches) and preferred length of 381mm (15 inches). Surveys include electro-shocking March to midApril, creel and tournament surveys and angler tagged fish recapture reports. Fish greater than 200mm will be tagged with orange tags placed near their dorsal fins. They will be measured, weighed, tagged and released in the area they were collected. Signs and press

Regardless of jurisdiction or management philosophy or methodology, the goals of MD, VA and DC are the same. Each is interested in maintaining and improving the largemouth bass fishery and to base decisions on the best possible science and data. This cooperative, proposed by the MD DNR Black Bass Advisory Subcommittee, will share data and create a collaborative methodology over the next 20 years. The shared data will provide answers to fisheries management questions. Rather than basing Tidal Potomac management decisions on separate pieces of the puzzle, it will be managed by a complete image to see the big picture. Author Capt. Steve Chaconas is Potomac River bass fishing guide. Potomac fishing reports: nationalbass.com. Book trips/ purchase gift certificates: info@ NationalBass.com.

Potomac River Bassing in March Water is warming to 50 degrees. Warm water discharge areas like Blue Plains and Four Mile Run are easier to fish. Time to use suspending jerkbaits tied to 10 pound test Gamma Edge fluorocarbon line. Finding the clearest water, make long casts and make slight twitches and allow the baits to pause. Vary the length of pauses. Lipless crankbaits in red, chartreuse, and chrome patterns on 10 pound test Gamma Edge fluorocarbon line, on Quantum Smoke baitcasting reels, can be slowly retrieved along the bottom. Use a Quantum Medium action cranking rod for best results. Cover rocky bottom area on flats close to creek mouths and points. Drop shot remains a mainstay this time of the year as well. Use 15 pound test Gamma Torque braid with 10 pound test edge leaders. A 3/16 Water Gremlin BullShot weight will anchor this rig. Also use split shot rigs in the same areas and around cover. Mustad 2/0 Mega Bite hooks are perfect for 4-5 inch soft plastics. Other finesse rigs are still effective. Mustad 1/8 ounce mushroom heads with small worms also work once fish are found. Cast and gently pop off the bottom and allow them to sit while shaking.

February 2020 | 45


OPEN SPACE

W

hen I was in my forties, I kept hearing women say, “When I hit fifty, that is when life started,” or “At fifty, I really came into myself.” All good, positive things, right? My 40s weren’t bad, give or take an open-heart surgery to correct two blocked arteries. I was humming along. I didn’t mind turning 50—especially since we planned a trip to Italy to celebrate. After sipping Prosecco in Florence, I came home and celebrated with back-to-back hip replacements. What? I’m only 50! No one mentioned joint replacements! Other things they didn’t mention: • Chin hairs • Poise panty liners replacing tampons • Restaurants being SOOOO dark • Parents stop offering gas money • People asking ME to borrow money like I’m the adult or something • Having to scroll so far down on forms to find my birth year • Everyone has their heat up so high I have to wear my bathing suit year round 46 | February 2020

LORI WELCH BROWN

It’s maddening. But, I made it to my 50s so there’s that which is cause for celebration, as many I know didn’t. A little fact that I praise God in gratitude for every day. Chin hairs, be damned! They represent growth—and growth only happens to the living! And yes, I pee when I laugh, but hey—at least I have something to laugh about. I did have the misconception that relationships would get easier. Turns out that people are still people, and relationships require work at any age. The more important the relationship, the more we need to roll up our sleeves. Of course, middle age does bring about an awareness of time—or the lack thereof. The clock is ticking which allows us to be more discerning in who or what we put our time and energy into. If you’re going to put your energy into a relationship, it has to be worth it over the long haul and satisfy you on a cellular level. A lesson that took me a few decades to learn is that some people can’t be fixed and/or won over so you may need to move on. In those instances, the best you can do is back out of the room (or relationship) as gracefully as possible and then RUN as fast as you can while thanking God for getting you out alive—or at least with

as few emotional bruises as possible. I’ve always loved the adage that people enter your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. I’ve definitely met a lot of ‘reason’ and ‘season’ people whom I tried to keep in my life longer than was meant to be. Unfortunately, the harder I grasped, the more pain it caused. Let’s face it— some people, no matter how much we want them to like/ love us, just aren’t capable of reciprocating and/or meeting our needs. There are a lot of broken people out there, and I’ve learned that while I love to help others, I can’t fix everyone. Time to move on. For me, staying positive also requires some heavy lifting. Sadly, I’m not one of those people (you know who you are) who wake up with a song on their lips. I roll out of bed, head straight to the coffee pot, and pray I don’t run into anyone along the way. After a cup of coffee, I write or meditate for a bit to get my mojo in check. It’s my way of coaxing myself into a positive mindset for the day. I like to at least start the day thinking I am in control of my energy. Negativity and toxicity may be all around us, but I get to choose what I filter out and what I allow in. I choose positivity, and am starting to embrace a zero tolerance policy

for all the Eeyores out there who want to rain on my parade and/or drag me down to their level. When I hit 50, I got serious about time management. As a result, I decided I didn’t have time for drama. Managing my day is about energy—where and how to spend it. I have goals and dreams I’m pursuing, laundry that needs to be folded, a fridge that requires stocking, and meals that aren’t going to cook themselves. Nowhere in that list is there room for OPD (Other People’s Drama) which is a bigger time suck than social media and much less enjoyable. My 50s have afforded me blessings that I didn’t have in my 20s, 30s, and 40s such as the ability to pursue my passions of writing and art. I’ve earned a paycheck since I was 15, so it’s nice to be able to take a break to focus on my own dreams vs. someone else’s which I did (and enjoyed) for many, many years. Who knows? Maybe one day my writing and art will open a new career path that I never imagined. Or, maybe I’ll get my yoga certification and teach or learn how to make fancy coffee drinks at some cool cafe. The world is my oyster. I am also blessed with richer relationships. I may have fewer people in my life, but through life’s difficult lessons, I’ve learned not to take them

for granted as they might not be around tomorrow. Age may not bring celebrity or Porsches, but it does bring the wisdom that those things don’t bring you happiness. As I turn the corner into the fourth year of my 50s, I am determined to cut myself a little more slack. I can be awfully hard on me, and I deserve better. And—to give myself a little more credit where credit is due. Damn it—I am still rockin’ it. I biked ten miles on the stationary bike yesterday, and managed to stay awake to the end of Dateline. #killingit Seems like wherever you look there are all these young, smart people rising up among the ranks. They are discovering, inventing and pushing boundaries that seemed unimaginable. It’s hard not to get intimidated, but I still have a voice and some value to bring to the table. And, maybe the most important lesson of middle age is that there is truly room for everyone at the table so long as they leave their negativity and toxicity at the door. Crazy, right? Middle age can be maddening, but with some tweezers, extra light, and the right people in your life, it can also be maddeningly beautiful. Old Town Crier


NATIONAL HARBOR

S

pringtime is just around the corner and you know what this means. Tourists - as well as we locals - will be clamouring and crowding into the area to witness the annual blooming of the cherry blossoms. The verdict is out on when the blooms will actually appear since the weather has been so mild this winter that the cherry trees didn’t have a chance to go into their normal dormant stage to store up for the spring blooms. However, who knows what could happen with the weather between the time I’m penning this column (February 24th) and the time you read it. Let’s hope for the best since they really are beautiful. Two years ago, the Harbor added more than 100 Okame cherry trees to its existing collection bringing the number of trees it has to more than 200, many of which line the Potomac River. The trees were planted in mass along the Harbor waterfront so that you are able to see them when arriving by car, bus or boat. According to a member of the Harbor marketing team, the Okame’s are early bloomers and should be ready for prime time before their famous counterparts that line the Tidal Basin. The forecast for the time of bloom had not been made at the time of this writing but is

Old Town Crier

LANI GERING

Springtime is Around the Corner... scheduled to be announced early this month.

…..at the Gaylord Beginning on March 20th and running through April 12th, the Gaylord Resort is bringing back Bloom. This is a four-week celebration full of spring-focused activities. With endless offerings inside the resort, visitors and guests alike can enjoy the beautiful sight of over 100 cherry blossom trees adorning the waterfront in front of the Resort. During Bloom, the Resort transforms into a spring oasis with endless experiences for guests to enjoy. In conjunction with special room rates, they are offering complimentary family activities for overnight guests on Saturdays including a new Bloom n’ Petting Zoo attraction. From 3:30 to 6:30 p.m., kids can spend time and take pictures with furry friends on the Resort’s outdoor rolling lawn overlooking the Potomac. Other family friendly experiences include Cupcake Decorating and a Plant-YourOwn-Flower activity that take place in the Atrium from 2:00 to 4 p.m. If you choose to stick around, you will be serenaded by a pianist performing in the lobby from 3:00 to 7:00 NATIONAL HARBOR > PAGE 48

February 2020 | 47


GRAPEVINE FROM PAGE 47

p.m. For a special treat on Sundays, the Easter Bunny will be hopping around the lobby. Doesn’t get much better than that or….does it? Well, if you are looking for an “adult” activity, it does. In conjunction with the variety of kiddie friendly happenings, those of us that enjoy an adult beverage or two may have an interest in sipping on refreshing drinks at one of the Resort’s four bars and enjoy a special Cherry Blossom Cocktail. For more imbibing enjoyment, adults can also head over to the Belvedere Lobby Bar for a Springtime Spirits Mixology Class. The Resort’s Beverage Director will lead participants in an interactive class teaching us how to craft three spring inspired cocktails using fresh garden ingredients. Complementary food pairings prepared by the Resort’s Executive Chef will be offered and participants will also receive a take home gift. The class will be held every Saturday beginning on March 21st  from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Tickets must be purchased in advance by visiting Tickets. GaylordNational.com. On Fridays from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m., guests can enjoy a sunset jazz performance also taking place

AC LOUNGE 156 Waterfront Street 301-749-2299 BOND 45 149 Waterfront Street 301-839-1445 BRASS TAP 164 Fleet Street 301-965-9116 BROTHER JIMMY’S BBQ 177 Fleet Street 301-909-8860 CADILLAC RANCH 186 Fleet Street 301-839-1100

in Belvedere Lobby Bar. In keeping with the theme, the Resort’s spa, Relâche, will be offering a selection of cherry blossom-infused treatments. Spa-goers can choose from a massage, facial or pedicure that incorporate custom blended cherry blossom body butter, oil or scrub. There are special spa packages available and if you pick the Cherry Blossom Ritual, you will be gifted with a Rose Quarts Tree of Life pendant symbolizing love and beauty in honor of the cherry blossoms. Each Cherry Blossom service includes a complimentary cherry blossom

CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL 158 National Plaza 301-749-2016 CRAB CAKE CAFE 140 National Plaza 240-766-2063 ELEVATION BURGER 108 Waterfront Street 301-749-4014 FIORELLA PIZZERIA E CAFFE 152 National Plaza 301-839-1811 GRACES MANDARIN 188 Waterfront Street 301-839-3788

48 | February 2020

tea or cherry blossom cocktail.

…..in the Harbor Things have pretty much been in slow motion for the last couple of months but they are starting to gear up as we get closer tourist season. In keeping with the spirit of the cherry blossom, the Harbor will, once again participate in the National Cherry Blossom Festival activities. We all know that the Festival celebrates spring, the gift of the cherry blossom trees, and the enduring friendship between the people of the United States

and Japan. Throughout the months of March and April, the Harbor will turn its lights pink - including The Capital Wheel - and hold an array of activities and celebrations including its popular annual Sakura Sunday event on April 5 from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. It is considered an official event of the 2020 National Cherry Blossom Festival. The event includes authentic Japanese cherry blossom traditions—all in the Waterfront District at National Harbor. Sakura Sunday features a wide array of free activities including traditional Japanese

NATIONAL HARBOR DINING GUIDE GRANITE CITY FOOD & BREWERY 200 American Way 240-493-3900 IRISH WHISPER 177 Fleet Street 301-909-8859 MASON'S FAMOUS LOBSTER ROLLS 156 National Plaza 410-298-7850

McCORMICK & SCHMICK 145 National Plaza 301-567-6224 McLOONES PIER HOUSE 141 National Harbor Plaza 301-839-0815 NANDO’S PERI-PERI 191 American Way 301-567-8900

NATIONAL PAST TIME SPORTS BAR & GRILLE Gaylord Resort 301-965-4000 gaylordnational.com OLD HICKORY STEAKHOUSE Gaylord Resort 301-965-4000 gaylordnational.com

picnicking with food available for sale; a sake, rosé and beer garden; a Japanese Market and Japanese-inspired music and entertainment. The Harbor will bring in world-class Japanese entertainment and Japanese artisans. This year, they are excited to introduce a water lantern experience to close the evening. Restaurants, retailers and hotels in the Waterfront District and throughout the Harbor will being extending special offers throughout the month of April. Some of the retailers in the Waterfront District will also participate in a cherry blossom store window display competition. For those who want to see the cherry blossoms at the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. as well as National Harbor, the water taxis run from the Waterfront District at the Harbor to the Tidal Basin and other destinations. It’s an easy way to avoid traffic congestion and parking challenges in D.C. It is my understanding that there are additional activities taking place in the Harbor but that information was unavailable at the time of this writing. For more information on National Harbor and cherry blossom festivities, go to NationalHarbor.com.

PIENZA ITALIAN MARKET Gaylord Resort 301-965-4000 gaylordnational.com POTBELLY SANDWICH WORKS 146 National Plaza 301-686-1160 PUBLIC HOUSE 199 Fleet Street 240-493-6120 REDSTONE AMERICAN GRILL 155 National Plaza 301-839-3330

ROSA MEXICANA 135 Waterfront Street 301-567-1005 SAUCIETY AMERICAN GRILL 171 Waterfront Street 240-766-3640 SUCCOTASH 168 Waterfront Street 301-567-8900 THAI PAVILLION 151 American Way 301-749-2022 WALRUS OYSTER & ALE HOUSE 152 Waterfront Street 301-567-6100

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