Old Town Crier April 2022 - Full Issue

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Since 1988 • Priceless

From the Bay to the Blue Ridge

April 2022

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Setting the Standard In Old Town Since 1979


april‘22 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 Erin Koons Stephen Bearce Sarah Becker Karen Bieling Alexander Britel Cheryl Burns F. Lennox Campello Steve Chaconas Carolyn Cockroft Scott Dicken Doug Fabbioli Matt Fitzsimmons Nicole Flanagan Lani Gering Christina Hitchcock Tom Horton Miriam Kramer

CONTRIBUTORS Genevieve LeFranc Timothy Long Cindy McGovern Meg Mullery Ron Powers Kim Putens Julie Reardon Ashley Rosson Jaime Stephens Ashley Stimpson Grace Stewart Bob Tagert Carl Trevisan Ryan Unverzagt Lisa Velenovsky Lori Welch Brown

© 2022 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.

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A Bit of History ............................................................... 8

Fitness ............................................................................... 39

Open Space .................................................................... 42

After hours ...................................................................... 11

From the Bay .................................................................. 24

Personality Profile........................................................... 4

Alexandria Events .......................................................... 2

From the Trainer........................................................... 38

Art & Antiques.................................................................15

Gallery Beat..................................................................... 14

Business Profile ............................................................... 6

Go Fish .............................................................................. 41

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

Grapevine......................................................................... 35

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

High Notes ...................................................................... 11

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

Let's Eat............................................................................. 28

Exploring VA Wines ................................................... 36

Let's Get Crafty ............................................................. 32

The Last Word ................................................................12

Financial Focus ............................................................... 7

National Harbor ........................................................... 44

To the Blue Ridge ......................................................... 26

First Blush ....................................................................... 40

On the Road .................................................................... 1

Urban Garden ............................................................... 10

Pets of the Month ........................................................ 19 Points on Pets ................................................................ 18 Publishers notes ............................................................ 2 Road Trip ......................................................................... 22 Take Photos, Leave Footprints.................................16

On the road with OTC

About the Cover “Mother Nature In the New Millennium” – painting by Jim Warren. Warren is one of the most versatile and successful artists living today. Traditional in the sense that he uses oils on canvas but anything from conventional, Jim creates what he feels – never conforming. The whimsically surreal and amazingly unique creations he paints have inspired artists from around the world. For more about Jim and his work, visit his website at JimWarren.com of follow him on Facebook @Jim Warren Art.

Old Town Crier

Always so much fun to see good friends taking the Old Town Crier on their adventures. Kathy and Bob Condon do a lot of traveling and have been very faithful about having the OTC in their luggage. This photo was taken on one of their treks ‘from the beach to the mountains’ in North Carolina. What started in Hilton Head ended up near Sparta. Not ones to pass up an opportunity to stop at a good winery, they chose Jones von Drehle Vineyards and Winery located on the rising slope of the Blue Ridge just northwest of Elkin. Pictured here from left to right are Kathy, their good friends Malinda and Keith Sink and Bob. If you would like to see you photo in this space, just take a hard copy with you on your next adventure and snap a few pics with the OTC in hand. Send them to office@oldtowncrier.com with some good information for the caption. Your photo will appear both in print and online. April 2022 | 1


PUBLISHER’S NOTES

BOB TAGERT

Alexandria

Wishing you all a very Happy Easter!

ALEXANDRIA EVENTS – APRIL 2022

“It’s a Strange, Strange World We Live In, Master Jack” This song was performed by Four Jacks and a Jill and released in 1967. There are a lot of us baby boomers walking around silently singing this song these days. Google it and listen along. Great lyrics. Last month I was writing about the change in weather and as I write this, I will be damned if it isn’t going to be in the well below freezing over the next two days and now we are over 30 days into a war in Europe, gas prices are still high, and everyone on Facebook has become a war strategy expert with a minor in petroleum cost. It is truly a strange world! While keeping one eye on Ukraine, we managed to get another Old Town Crier to the printer. The only thing about the weather that concerns me as I write this is the massive storm on the horizon – however, in the meantime we will focus on this month’s issue. This month our trek took us to a constant in our lives... the Atlantic Ocean and the beautiful Boardwalk Plaza Hotel in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Read about this peaceful spring destination in Road Trip. We stopped in at Mae’s Market & Cafe at 277 South Washington Street to get material for this months Business Profile. Our Dining Out destination returned us to Landini Brothers Restaurant, an Old Town original going back over 40 years. Winemaker Doug Fabbioli explains the art of barrel making in Exploring Virginia Wines. In From the Bay we get a look at one of the largest in-water sailboat show in America. Music aficionado Ron Powers writes of an enigma...G.H. Hat in his High Notes column. April brings us Earth Day and History, Sarah Becker explores Taking care of Mother Earth in her column. Let’s Get Crafty Tim Long discovers “God made beer because he loves us and wants us to be happy”. In Personality Profile learn about our own Scott Dicken. He is definitely a traveling man and he explains why Namibia is the ideal destination in Take Photos, Leave Footprints. With the worry of a full scale war in Europe and other troublesome things that I can’t control (see above) I was feeling a bit sorry for myself and then I read Open Space by Lori Welch Brown and now I’m counting my blessings. By this time next month I may have the shorts out and thinking about working on the sailboat. April is a time of change...life begins again. Give Mother Earth some love this month, sail a Flying Scot out of Belle Haven Marina or rent a kayak. Visit a Virginia winery. The weather is warming. Get out and enjoy it.

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April 2022

Credit Kristen Summerer for Visit Alexandria

2ND

Justin Wilson will kick-off the walk. 100% net funds raised will help to beautify and protect Alexandria’s environment and educate citizens about best sustainability practices.

ALX Dog Walk Check-in from 7 to 7:45 a.m.; walk from 8 to 11 a.m. Admission: Regular registration: $35; Teens ages 13 to 18 and all military registration: $25 Oronoco Bay Park 100 Madison Street alxdogwalk.com Come join the inaugural two-mile ALX Dog Walk along the breathtaking waterfront walk in historic Old Town Alexandria. Walkers and their pooches (or without a pooch) follow the waterfront trail in Oronoco Bay Park in Old Town, head toward the Robinson Landing Pier, where they will parade by a judging panel for fun prizes, and then return to the park for an awards celebration hosted by Monte Durham of “Say Yes to the Dress Atlanta,” plus music, hundreds of dogs, treats and more. Receive a paw-some goodie bag and event t-shirt at checkin. At 8 a.m., Chuck Bell from NBC 4 Storm Team and Mayor

7TH First Thursdays in Del Ray First Thursday of each month 6 p.m. Admission: Free Various locations in Del Ray in Alexandria visitdelray.com First Thursday is a series of free outdoor street festivals that bring the community together around a fun theme, benefiting a local non-profit. The series starts in April with “Hats Along the Avenue,” with the band Mars Rodeo playing at Pat Miller Neighborhood Square, followed by “Dog Days in Del Ray” and more. ALEXANDRIA EVENTS > PAGE 3

Cherry Blossoms Return to Alexandria APRIL 2ND– MAY 1ST

APRIL 10TH

Torpedo Factory Cherry Blossom Events

Cherry Blossom Jubilee

105 N. Union Street 703-746-4590 Torpedofactory.org

12 to 3 p.m. Kick off the celebrations at noon with a live performance by taiko drum group Nen Daiko on the waterfront side of the Art Center all while enjoying music and live art demonstrations from participating artists. Make this the opening entry for the April Events – I am sending a “rendering” of the installation but should be able to send you a real one before Thursday when it is actually totally installed:

Cherry Blossom Exhibition Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Art lovers are encouraged to stop by the Torpedo Factory Art Center throughout April to view floral art displayed on all three floors. Masks are required for all visitors regardless of vaccination status.

Old Town Crier


Photo by Lee Moody

New Art Installation On the Waterfront I Love You On display through November Admission: Free Waterfront Park 1A Prince Street visitalexandriava.com/public-art I Love You, the latest temporary art installation on Old Town Alexandria’s waterfront is a luminous declaration of affection from the city to the public, creating a photoready postcard of Alexandria which represents the city’s

ALEXANDRIA EVENTS | FROM PAGE 2

9TH Easter Egg Hunt with Old Town Business Association 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission: Free Various locations throughout Old Town oldtownbusiness.org Bring your own basket and bunny hop up and down King Street and select side streets. Explore the map to find participating retailers, where you’ll get an Easter treat and discover interactive activities at select locations. More details to come at oldtownbusiness.org.

welcoming spirit and a message of hope through the COVID-19 pandemic. Created by award-winning and globally recognized R & R STUDIOS, I Love You is a plaza with the words “I Love You” scripted in rose-hued metal and lighted neon standing 15 feet high above a pink ground mural emulating a giant “magic carpet.” This “social sculpture” utilizes three words at once universal and utterly personal to establish a place of encounter, friendship and camaraderie on the river. Miami-based R & R Studios is helmed by husband-and-wife Argentinianborn, American architects Roberto Behar and Rosario Marquardt. I Love You is the fourth installation of the City of Alexandria’s annual temporary public art series, “Site See: New Views in Old Town.”

STAY UP TO DATE

on what to do, where to shop and dine, and the latest happenings

16TH & 17TH Easter Egg Hunt Lee-Fendall House Museum & Garden 614 Oronoco Street 703-548-1789 leefendallhouse.org Find Easter eggs hidden in the Lee-Fendall garden during the popular annual egg hunt. Sessions also include crafts, games and a visit from the Easter Bunny. Attendance is limited, and reservations must be made in advance; face masks are recommended. Bring your own basket. Sessions offered on the hour through 3 p.m., beginning at 10 a.m. on Saturday and 12 p.m. on Sunday. Admission: $15 for participating children ages 2 to 12; $5 for accompanying adults; free for infants under 2.

16TH & MAY 21ST

Here’s how 1. Check out VisitAlexandriaVA.com 2. Stay tuned to the visitALX blog:

Blog.VisitAlexandriaVA.com

3. Follow Visit Alexandria on social media

Workshops on the Waterfront

10TH

1 to 3 p.m. Admission: Free Torpedo Factory Art Center 105 N. Union Street 703-746-4590 torpedofactory.org Enjoy a free demonstration or hands-on project with a Torpedo Factory Art Center artist at the waterfront entrance of the Art Center. There will be a different project every month. Join in for sunshine, art-making and fun.

Stories in the Architecture

23RD

2 p.m. Admission: $10 per person Lee-Fendall House Museum & Garden 614 Oronoco Street 703-548-1789 leefendallhouse.org Explore the history of the Lee-Fendall House through its architecture and visit parts of the house that are not regularly open to the public. See how changes in style and home technology have left their mark on the home, from when it was built in 1785 through the twentieth century. Tickets must be purchased in advance and are $10 per person. Members of Lee-Fendall House are free but must call or email to make a reservation at (703) 548-1789 or contact@leefendallhouse. org. Face masks are required inside the museum.

89th Annual Historic Homes & Garden Tour 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission: $55 per ticket purchased in advance online; $65 day-of from the Alexandria Visitor Center vagardenweek.org Part of Historic Garden Week in Virginia, this year’s tour includes admission to five exclusive private homes and gardens and six nearby historic public properties, including: Carlyle House, Lee-Fendall House, River Farm, Gunston Hall, Mount Vernon and Green Spring Gardens. Complimentary refreshments will be available at Old Presbyterian Meeting House. Proceeds fund restoration and preservation of more than 39 Virginia historic public gardens and landscapes, a research fellowship program and more.

4. Sign up for the Alexandria Insider monthly e-newsletter

VisitAlexandriaVA.com/eNews

Corporate Partner:

ALEXANDRIA EVENTS > PAGE 5

Old Town Crier

April 2022 | 3


PERSONALITY PROFILE

BY LANI GERING

Scott takes a break on the South Inylchek Glacier in Kyrgyzstan • Witnessing sunrise over the Maasai Mara in Kenya from a hot air balloon • Summiting the World’s highest free-standing mountain, Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania • Successfully reaching Everest Base Camp in Nepal • Free diving with sea turtles in Samoa • Witnessing the scale and majesty of Victoria Falls in Zambia by helicopter • Canoeing and wild camping in the Okavango Delta in Botswana • Descending from South Inylchek glacier in Kyrgyzstan by former soviet army helicopter • Witnessing sunrise over Petra, Jordan • Driving the entire length of India in a motorized rickshaw • Watching the sun rise over the ancient temples of Angkor Wat, Cambodia

The World Through the Eye of Scott Dicken

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any of you loyal readers will recognize this guy. His photos and writings have been appearing on the pages of the Old Town Crier every month for the past few years. This month we took the time to interview our resident travel columnist, Scott Dicken, author of Take Photos, Leave Footprints. I met Scott several years ago when he was a single guy reporting to one of my BFF’s after transferring to DC from London. She was working in the DC office of the UK-based Crown Agents at the time. We have since become friends as well. Being a Brit, he has that charming accent and wry sense of humor that most English people possess. He is definitely a good guy to invite to a party! As I have gotten to know him and his beautiful wife Ashton on a social level, I find their adventures quite entertaining and I thought you all might like a bit of insight to his love of travel and what inspired him to establish his travel blog, TakePhotosLeaveFootprints. com. OTC: Tell us a bit about yourself and what inspired your love of travel. SD: I grew up outside of London. My summers typically incorporated the family’s annual vacation, and throughout the year, my friends and I organized weekends away whenever low-cost European airfares and hostels afforded us the opportunity. It wasn’t until a month-long expedition circumnavigating Iceland when I was 17 that the travel bug truly bit hard. This led to month-long trips to South Africa and Chile in between university semesters. I wanted my career to include travel opportunities, and that decision resulted in me moving to Washington, DC (which explains my predominantly English writing style, but occasionally Americanized spelling and 4

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grammar). Now with an American wife in tow, my job takes me around the World. In any month, I could travel to any combination of countries in SubSaharan Africa, Asia, the South Pacific, Europe, and Latin America. My holidays are similar – my wife and I like to vary continents each year and to push our vacation allowance to the limit. This has taught me that it’s possible to travel the world and visit new places with just a limited vacation allowance and a whole lot of desire! What’s your favorite country? Second to “how many countries have you been to?” this is probably the question I get asked most often. It’s also the one I most struggle to answer. Each country is so different and there are certain aspects about a lot of individual places that I really like; making it near impossible to give a definitive answer. However, if I was really pushed then I’d probably say Namibia. I’ve spent a few months in Namibia and no matter how many times I visit I still get the same giddy excitement I got as kid the first time I visited Disneyworld. The diversity of landscapes and cultures means that every morning you wake up to a different experience. What is your favorite on-the-road moment? Honestly, I don’t have one. Sometimes the simplest of things, like a good glass of wine and some arancini sitting in one of Rome’s many squares can be the highlight of a trip. On other occasions I’ll go well out of my way to capture a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ experience. That said, some of my most memorable travel moments that always spring to mind include: • Gorilla trekking in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park

• Scuba diving in some of the most bio-diverse waters in the world in Egypt • Witnessing a voodoo ceremony in the Voundoun capital of the world; Ouidah in Benin • Mountain biking through the national parks of Swaziland (now Eswatini) • Experiencing the wildebeest migration in the Serengeti, Tanzania • Cooking Christmas dinner for 30 people whilst camping on the Torres Del Paine Trekking Circuit in Chile • Diving with sharks off the coast of Fiji What’s your favorite city? Outside of the two cities I’ve lived in for any significant amount of time (London and Washington D.C.) I’d have to say Rome, although Hong Kong ran a close race. I’ve visited Rome several times and had some amazing experiences. There’s obviously a huge number of sights to see, but Rome is more than that. Half the reason I love Rome centers on the cultural experience. There’s simply nothing better than spending an afternoon eating your way around the city followed by an evening sitting in a piazza drinking wine. It’s the ultimate form of relaxation and self-indulgence. What keeps you sane on the road? I always find this an interesting question because it’s the road itself that keeps me sane. Travel writing and blogging is a hobby for me. Unlike a lot of other travel writers and bloggers who are living the dream, I spend a substantial portion of my time sitting at a desk. Thankfully, my work takes me out on the road for about 3-4 months each year (at least it did before the pandemic), most often to Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. Without those regular departures from the office I imagine I’d go stir crazy. PERSONALITY PROFILE > PAGE 5

Old Town Crier


restaurant with a blood-filled plastic bag in their hand and a giant grin spread across their face. “We have some more meat” he exclaimed in Vietnamese. A conversation ensued between the ‘chef ’ and the Vietnamese members of my party, following which the chef retreated to the kitchen. “What are we having” I asked my friend. “You’ll see” he replied. Already fearing the worst my heart sank when our centerpiece arrived. A giant rat with head still on the plate. I can honestly say I have never tasted anything quite so ‘musky’ in all my life. It certainly didn’t help that the rat eyes remained fixed on us throughout the entire meal!

PERSONALITY PROFILE | FROM PAGE 4

When have you been most frightened or least enjoyed travelling? I feel lucky that my travel experiences have been 99% positive and without incident. However, there’s always that odd occasion when you just wished you were elsewhere. For me, those rare occasions include: • Surviving an attempted armed mugging in Johannesburg, South Africa • Surviving an attempted armed mugging in Cape Town, South Africa • Being admitted to hospital in South Africa when my ear drum was about to burst (apparently, I don’t have much luck in South Africa, but don’t let that put you off visiting!) • Being the most ill I’ve ever been, and being unable to leave bed for three days, after contracting food poisoning from street food in Bogota, Colombia • Accompanying my wife who was medically evacuated by helicopter from Everest Base Camp with Acute Mountain Sickness (in retrospect the chance of flying past Everest in helicopter is now a highlight) • Crashing a rental car into a tree whilst trying to evade a charging rhino in Namibia (it was an expensive day) • Sleeping on the roadside in remote rural India when I couldn’t find anywhere to stay for the night • Waking up with a rat on the end of my hotel bed in Vietnam • Sleeping outside on the floor of Keflavik airport,

What’s on your bucket list?

Scott and Ashton in the Okavango Delta in Botswana. Iceland overnight having been thrown out because it shut (my internal connecting flight didn’t leave until the next morning – it was a cold night) What’s the best souvenir you’ve come home with? I took a wife back from the US to the UK – does that count? What’s the worst meal you’ve had on the road? One particular meal comes instantly to mind! On a road trip in northern Vietnam, I stopped for lunch in a tiny remote village that only had one place to eat. Unfortunately, that place had hosted a wedding that same day and its cupboards were completely bare. As we stood faced with the prospect of having to drive a couple of hours to the next decent sized town, one of the kitchen staff emerged from the back of the

ALEXANDRIA EVENTS | FROM PAGE 3

30TH & MAY 1ST Revolutionary War Weekend 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission: Included with general admission ($28 for adults; $15 for youth ages 6 to 11; free for children); free for members George Washington’s Mount Vernon 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway 703-780-2000 mountvernon.org Step back in time at Revolutionary War Weekend. Mount Vernon’s serene 12acre field transforms into a battleground as Continentals, Redcoats and Hessians conduct military drills, perform cavalry demonstrations, and engage in 18th-century tacticals. Meet the soldiers who are encamped at Mount Vernon, discuss military techniques, and greet General Washington. Revolutionary War Weekend takes place rain or shine.

ABOUT ALEXANDRIA, VA Named a Top 3 Best Small City in the U.S. 2021 by the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards, Alexandria hums with a cosmopolitan feel and a walkable lifestyle—a welcoming weekend escape next to our nation’s capital. Founded in 1749, Old Town Alexandria is the nation’s third oldest locally designated historic district, boasting more than 200 independent restaurants and boutiques alongside intimate historic museums and new happenings at the waterfront. At the heart of it all is bustling King Street, a walkable mile recognized as one of the “Great Streets” of America. Walk in the footsteps of George Washington and America’s Founding Fathers while learning about Black history and African American change makers that have shaped the history of Alexandria and the U.S. Learn more at VisitAlexandriaVA.com. Connect with us! Web: Blog: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram:

VisitAlexandriaVA.com Blog.VisitAlexandriaVA.com Facebook.com/VisitAlexandriaVA Twitter.com/AlexandriaVA Instagram.com/VisitAlexVA

Pretty much anywhere and everywhere that I haven’t already been! Some of those at the top of that list include: • Exploring the Nubian Pyramids of Sudan • Exploring Antarctica • Catching sunrise over Bagan in Myanmar • Trekking Bhutan’s high trails to the Tiger’s Nest Monastery • Witnessing the Northern Lights in Finland • Photographing polar bears, reindeer and artic foxes on the Svalbard archipelago, Norway What Is One Tip You Would Give to Others About Traveling? It’s good to plan, but make sure you leave time to go off script and get lost. It’s often those unscripted moments that you’ll look back on most fondly.

LOCAL FARMERS MARKETS

OLD TOWN FARMERS MARKET Market Square 301 King Street Saturdays, 7 am – 12 Noon Year Round The Old Town Market is thought to be the one of nation’s oldest continuing markets operating since 1753. It is said that George Washington sent his products from Mount Vernon to be sold here. Today the plaza is a mecca for farmers and artists to sell their wares. The Market is a primary source for meats, dairy, fish, fruits, vegetables and flowers for all those who visit.

DEL RAY FARMERS MARKET Corner of Mt. Vernon and Oxford Avenues Saturdays, 8 am to Noon Year Round This market is strictly a producer grown market. Lots

Old Town Crier

of fresh vegetables, fruits, fish and salmon, fresh mushrooms, baked goods, hard cider. Farmers are within a 150 mile radius of Alexandria. A non-profit is featured each weekend.

OLD TOWN NORTH FARMERS & ARTISANS MARKET Montgomery Park 901 North Royal Street Thursdays, 3 pm – 7 pm Year Round Alexandria’s favorite dog friendly market! The Old Town North Thursday Market is a growers only market with a focus on produce from small family farms and local artisans. Products sold at the market include fresh fruits and veggies from Virginia’s Northern Neck, Micro Greens from an urban farm, Empanadas, Fresh baked pastries with a European flair and much more.

FOUR MILE RUN FARMERS & ARTISANS MARKET 4109 Mount Vernon Avenue Sundays, 9 am – 1 pm Year Round This market offers fresh, nutritious food to people of all income levels and strives to reflect the diversity of Alexandria’s community. Local artisans display their arts and crafts as well Due to the restrictions of the pandemic, all guidelines suggested by the CDC, the Virginia Department of Health and the City of Alexandria are followed by the market managers and the vendors at these markets. April 2022 | 5


BUSINESS PROFILE

LANI GERING

Mae’s Market & Café – A South Washington Street Gem

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any of you readers With the opening of several may not be aware “coffee-centric” establishments of this gem that of late in Old Town, Mae’s has an is just 2 blocks off impressive Espresso/Coffee/Tea/ of the beaten path Kombucha counter on top of a deli, in Old Town Alexandria. Since daily pastries and a self-proclaimed August of last year, Mae’s Market “edited grocery and bodega filled & Café has been occupying the with house-prepared foot and space in the Atrium Building pantry items”. (277 South Washington Street) In researching Mae’s on the where Eat Good Food group ‘interwebs’, I found that there is opened Society Fair several years quite a bit of information on the ago. After the demise of SF in the café/food side of the business but MAE’S MARKET & CAFÉ summer of 2019, the space stayed not much about the grocery and 277 South Washington Street vacant until then. bodega side. I believe that just Old Town Alexandria Mae’s is the brain child of Chef looking at the photos you can tell 703-664-0445 Nicole Jones – think Stomping Mae’s stocks a myriad of products Maesmarketandcafe.com Ground and Bagel Uprising in ranging from eco-friendly cleaning M-S 8am-7pm the Del Ray section of town – supplies to classy cocktail mix. The Sun 8am-6pm and is named for her Lithuanian majority of the pantry items lean great grandmother. I have been toward the healthy side and include told that Great Grandmother Mae taught Jones how many organic, gluten free and vegan options. There to cook and is responsible for many of the original is something for everyone here. recipes used in many of the items in the pastry case. The beer and wine selection at Mae’s is also very

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impressive as is the prepared food case. They carry some fun novelty items (they even have Peeps for Easter) that are reminiscent of the old Society Fair. If you were a frequent customer of SF, you will get the same great feeling that you had then when you walk in the door at Mae’s. There is something very welcoming about the vibe. Plans are in the mix to return the bar area into full service and expand the menu to include dinner. As of now, the majority of the seating for the cafe is in this room. This space also opens up directly into the “atrium” of the building so visitors and employees have easy access to the market and café. Living just one block to the south of Mae’s, I feel guilty that we haven’t taken more advantage of the deli and market aspects of the place over the last 7 months. It has always been our intention to do all we can to support local businesses and in the past using the “convenience” excuse was easy but now that doesn’t hold water. In fact, after I was done with my information gathering and fantastic butter croissant, I bought a much needed half gallon of milk to take home.

Old Town Crier


FINANCIAL FOCUS

CARL TREVISAN, CFP© & STEPHEN BEARCE

When Things Seem Out of Control, Control Things You Can During times of heightened stress, such as when there’s extreme market volatility, a person can quickly become overwhelmed and struggle to do things that might be considered simple or obvious. It can be helpful to focus on the things you can control, identify actions that you can take, and complete those action steps. Here are four action items for you to consider:

Review your investment plan Before you start making changes to your investment portfolio, consider your goals. Are you saving for retirement? Do you need to build a college fund for your children? Did a recent event create a need to adjust your plan? If your goals have changed or if you haven’t updated your plan in a while, review and, if necessary, update your investment strategy to support reaching your goals.

Understand your risk tolerance Risk is a key principle in investing. Some investments are riskier than others, but every financial decision involves risk. Since risk is inescapable, the key is to understand your risk tolerance and manage how much you are taking, which should be based on your longterm financial goals. If your tolerance for risk

has changed, review your strategy and make sure you are still comfortable with the amount of risk you’re taking.

Stick to your plan

NOW OPEN! 822 King Street Old Town Alexandria, Virginia 703.549.7167 Open 5:00 am-Midnight

When the market gets volatile, investors often react emotionally and may want to pull out of the market to try to avoid loss. However, remember that moving or selling investments during a market decline will likely lock in losses; staying invested may allow you to benefit if the market comes back. Before reacting, take time to step back and try to respond using logic rather than emotion.

Organize and update important documents Are your important documents up-to-date and accessible to those who may need them? Create a reference list of your documents and consider making a digital version for easy storage and accessibility. Also ensure that your beneficiary designations for investment accounts, life insurance, and other accounts are up-to-date to reflect any new circumstances such as marriage, birth, death, or divorce. Beneficiary designations typically supersede your will or trust, so you’ll want to confirm that they are current and accurate.

Wells Fargo Advisors does not provide legal or tax advice. Be sure to consult with your tax and legal advisors before taking any action that could have tax consequences. Any estate plan should be reviewed by an attorney who specializes in estate planning and is licensed to practice law in your state. This article was written by/for Wells Fargo Advisors and provided courtesy of Carl M. Trevisan, Managing Director-Investments and Stephen M. Bearce, First Vice President- Investments in Alexandria, VA at 800-247-8602. Investment and Insurance Products are: • Not Insured by the FDIC or Any Federal Government Agency • Not a Deposit or Other Obligation of, or Guaranteed by, the Bank or Any Bank Affiliate • Subject to Investment Risks, Including Possible Loss of the Principal Amount Invested 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. ©2017-2021 Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC. All rights reserved. Old Town Crier

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A BIT OF HISTORY | © SARAH BECKER

Oh Mother

She takes care of us, time for us to start taking of her The amount of future warming Earth will experience depends on how much carbon dioxide [CO2] and other greenhouse gases [GHG] we humans emit in the coming decades. GHG are any of the gaseous components that trap heat in the atmosphere. The most abundant greenhouse gas, CO2 is the product of burning fossil fuels [coal, natural gas and oil; solid waste and trees, and chemical reactions like with cement]. In 2019 carbon dioxide accounted for 80% of U.S. greenhouse gases, methane 10%. “There is no good reason why we should fear the future,” President and conservationist Theodore Roosevelt [R-NY] said in 1905, “but there is every reason why we should face it seriously, neither hiding from ourselves the gravity of the problems before us nor fearing to approach these problems with the unbending, unflinching purpose to solve them aright.” Today’s U.S. Western mega- drought is “the worst in 1200 years.” Earth Day was first celebrated 52 years ago— on April 22. Why, to advocate on behalf of environmentalism. “Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires, crippling drought, and more powerful storms,” President Barack Obama [D-IL] said in his 2013 Inaugural Address. “The path towards sustainable energy sources will be…difficult,” Obama continued. “But Americans cannot resist this transition… We cannot cede to the other nations the technology that will power new jobs and new industries.” Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Catalyst is investing $1.5b in clean technology projects including direct air capture, green 8

April 2022

hydrogen, long-duration energy storage, and sustainable aviation fuel. “Now is the time for the unstoppable courage to preserve and protect our health, our families, our livelihoods,” the Earth Day website insists. “We need to act (boldly), innovate (broadly), and implement (equitably). It’s going to take all of us…Businesses, governments, and citizens— everyone accounted for, and everyone accountable.” 2021 was America’s fourth warmest year on record. “[W]e have only a few years left to avoid a climate catastrophe,” John Kerry, special presidential envoy for climate explained. The United States rejoined the Paris Agreement on January 20, 2021—by Executive Order. “The Paris Agreement is an unprecedented framework for global action,” Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken noted. “Its purpose is both simple and expansive: to help us…build resilience…to the impacts.” One -fifth of the world’s largest 2,000 companies have committed to net-zero target emissions. The agreed upon deadline: 2030-2050. CO2 is naturally “sequestered” when it is absorbed by plants “as part of the biological carbon cycle.” Historically speaking forests, farms and grasslands capture about 25% of our carbon emissions. Another 30% is absorbed by the upper layer of the ocean. The latter however raises the water’s acidity level, and ocean acidification makes it harder for marine animals to build their shells. How does one explain this malady to ocean loving shrimp and oysters, to hungry dinner guests? “Now, as momentous as our joining the Agreement was in 2016—and as momentous as A BIT OF HISTORY > PAGE 9

Old Town Crier


A BIT OF HISTORY | FROM PAGE 8

our rejoining is today—what we do in the [future] is even more important,” Blinken continued. “You have seen and will continue to see us weaving climate change into our most important…conversations. In these conversations, we’re asking other leaders: how can we do more together?” The “other leaders” ask, “how can” the Biden White House “do more together” with the Democrat-controlled Senate. British born engineer and renowned architect Benjamin Latrobe [1764-1820] first acknowledged the need for a well-designed waterworks system in 1798— following Philadelphia’s Yellow Fever outbreak. In 1799, the same year Congress passed the National Quarantine Act, “an Act respecting quarantines and health laws,” Latrobe was hired by the city of Philadelphia to construct America’s first municipal water supply system. Dr. Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence assumed Philadelphia’s Yellow Fever epidemic was caused by unsanitary conditions, contaminated water especially. He advocated pumping fresh water into the city…washing the docks and the streets in warmer weather; emptying toilets, and cleaning sewers. Fast forward to today. “Stop using the sky as an open sewer!” former Vice President Al Gore exclaimed on January 13, 2022. Climate change impacts are many: public health threats and economic shifts are two. Last year’s increase in U.S. GHG emissions was reportedly “fueled by a rise in coal-generated power and pollution from trucking.” Transportation accounts for approximately one-fifth of the world’s CO2 emissions. Less than half of those emissions come from passenger vehicles such as cars and vans. In Alexandria in 2018, energy consumption (residential and commercial) accounted for 58% of the city’s GHG emissions; transportation 34% and rising. The Earth’s temperature has risen by 0.14o F per decade since 1880. The rate of warming over the past 40 years is more than twice that: 0.32o F per decade since 1981.” From 1900 to 1980 new temperature records were set on average every 13.5 years; from 1981-2019 every three years. Mt. Everest’s Sol Col Glacier took roughly 2,000 years to form: has melted in just 25 years. “We have become great in a material sense because of the lavish use of our resources,” President Roosevelt told State Governors in 1908. “But the time has come to inquire seriously what will happen when our forests are gone, when the coal, the iron, the oil, and the gas are exhausted, when the soils shall have been still further impoverished and washed into the streams, polluting the rivers, denuding the fields, and obstructing navigation.” How would Theodore Roosevelt respond to news of global warming and today’s climate change debate? Historian Douglas Brinkley suggests Teddy “would have been on the side of science.” More than 70 environmental groups have launched a joint campaign to protect old-growth trees on federal lands from logging. Theodore Roosevelt died in 1919, his conservation work unfinished. Five Presidencies later, President Herbert Hoover [R-CA], a geologist cum mining engineer, appreciated his predecessor’s concerns. “I cannot state too strongly that pollution of waters under Federal control is destroying not only our fisheries, but is also destroying our beaches and endangering our harbors,” Hoover said in a 1924 telegram. Hoover was an avid fisherman. The Hoovers Virginia Presidential retreat Rapidan Camp included 164 acres of Shenandoah forest land. Old Town Crier

“We do know what the attainment of [our] ideals should be,” President Hoover said in his 1929 Inaugural Address, “the sustaining of education and the advancement of knowledge.” It was an increased understanding of pollution that caused President Richard Nixon [R-CA] to establish the Environmental Protection Agency [EPA]. “Since 1970, the EPA has made significant progress,” Administrator Andrew Wheeler said on December 2, 2020. “Historic milestones include setting the nation’s air quality standards to protect human health, regulating the quality of public drinking water, creating the [1980] Superfund program to clean up hazardous waste sites, protecting children from exposure to lead-based paint, and recently, launching the first ever United States Federal Strategy for Addressing the Global Issue of Marine Litter.” As of 2022, the countries with the highest CO2 emissions are: [1] China with 9.9 billion tons of CO2 emitted, coal especially, [2] United States with 4.4 billion tons of CO2 emitted, coal included; and [3] India with 2.3 billion tons of CO2 emitted. Eighteen Republican AGs, led by the coal industry now claim the EPA has no authority to broadly regulate power plant-related GHG emissions, the Clean Air Act included. [West Virginia v. EPA, 2022] Former EPA Administrator Wheeler, a coal enthusiast, is Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin’s choice to lead Virginia’s Department of Natural Resources. On January 15, 2022, the Governor signed an executive order aimed at withdrawing Virginia from the 11-state Regional GHG Initiative. According to the Virginia Conservation Network, Wheeler “silenced climate science on the EPA’s website [and] sought to slash the EPA’s Chesapeake Bay [cleanup] Program’s budget by 90%.” Coal, first dug in Virginia in 1748, is mined in five southwestern counties. Al Gore published his environmental tome, An Inconvenient Truth more than 15 years ago. Today Gore “is encouraged by the rapid growth of solar and wind power, of electric vehicles.” EVs, plug-in hybrids, and traditional hybrids “provide energy efficient transportation while lowering or eliminating tailpipe emissions; diminishing noise and reducing operating costs.” After attending the 2021 the United Nations Climate Change Conference Gore decided “2022 is the year world leaders need to…actually start

cutting their GHG emissions.” His primary concern: accountability. His high tech solution: Climate TRACE. “We harness satellite imagery and other forms of remote sensing, artificial intelligence, and collective data science expertise to track human-caused GHG emissions as they happen,” the Climate TRACE website explains. “Climate TRACE’s emissions inventory is the world’s first comprehensive accounting of GHG emissions based primarily on direct, independent observation.” According to NOAA, “last year the U.S. experienced 20 separate billion-dollar weather and climate disasters.” At least 688 people were killed and damages totaled $145 billion. Bottom line: “scientists are declaring a code red for humanity.” “Even from space the effects of climate change are visible,” French astronaut Thomas Pesquet said on January 24, 2022, “especially the rise in extreme weather events.” “The rise in weather and climate extremes has led to some irreversible impacts as…systems are pushed beyond their ability to adapt,” the United Nations 2022 Climate Impact Report concluded. My question: How well will those countries unable to cope with the COVID pandemic manage the changes—economic and behavioral—needed to deal with climate change? Yes, the so-called blue economies focus mainly on ocean sustainability. But we humans have yet to really take heed; to turn environmental theory into every day practice? The ten warmest years ever recorded have all occurred since 2005. Sarah Becker started writing for The Economist while a graduate student in England. Similar publications followed. She 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. Email abitofhistory53@ gmail.com April 2022 | 9


URBAN GARDEN

SPRING

Has Sprung… As you begin your quest for the perfect garden, don’t overdo it! It’s probably been a few months since you gave those muscles and bones a good workout, so start out slowly and avoid that Monday morning backache.

B

ecause the world has such a multitude of microclimates, it would be impossible to create a list of gardening tasks that would cover everyone. Therefore, this monthly list is based on general weather patterns for the northern United States (zones 6-8). Much of the information may also be useful for other areas of the world in coming months. Here are a few April garden projects that you can do to help keep your garden looking its best the rest of this season.

Shrubs and Trees There still is time to plant trees and shrubs. However, by mid-month it will be a little late to transplant large trees or shrubs, so do them now. The months of March, April and May are ideal for pruning evergreens. So if you have a Juniper, Cypress or conifer that need shearing or pruning this is a good time to accomplish this task. Remove all dead, diseased, and undesirable wood. However, do not prune back into the bare wood part of the plant. Prune your Forsythia after it finishes flowering and remember that broadleaf and needle leaf evergreens benefit most from lightly spreading a high nitrogen fertilizer around their bases.

10

April 2022

Perennials, Annuals, and Bulbs April is the month for planting summer flowering bulbs like dahlias, gladiolas and lilies. Mix bulb fertilizer, processed manure and peat moss into the planting soil. Tuberous Begonias and Canna should not be set outdoors until all danger of frost has passed, so wait until next month. Plant annual seeds of asters, cosmos, marigolds, zinnias in the garden. When all frost danger has passed you can move your stored fuchsias and geraniums outdoors. Trim them back, feed and re-pot if necessary. Water them well. When they have finished blooming, you should deadhead your spring flowering bulbs. Do not cut off the green foliage yet! These green leaves continue to grow for a few weeks, and provide the bulb with food for flowering next year. Divide perennials like day lilies, delphiniums, iris, chrysanthemums, daisies and phlox. The additional plants you create can be traded or given to friends, or moved to a new area of the garden. Hybrid Tea Roses should be fertilized prior to buds beginning to bloom. Using a systemic fertilizer will help prevent insect infestation later in the summer, as it feeds your rose. Plant new rosebushes before growth starts and buds swell.

If you have a pond or pool you should set aquatic plants any time after the middle of the month.

The Lawn The application of a spring type of lawn fertilizer should perk up the lawn and improve its over-all color and appearance. If there is moss growing in the lawn, use spring lawn fertilizer that has the moss-killer included, so you can do both jobs in one easy application. Spring is also a good time to thatch and overseed the lawn. Thatch buildup can smother your lawn and provide an environment for diseases. Remove thatch with a brisk raking, or with a dethatching machine. Over seeding will help fillin the lawn and deter the re-growth of moss and weeds. Use about one pound of quality grass seed for every 300 square feet of lawn area. Apply a light compost or soil over the seed to keep it moist and in place. Aerating the lawn will allow water to penetrate deeper into the lawn soil and reduce the need to water during the dryer months ahead. Use a garden fork and punch holes over the surface of your lawn. As mowing becomes necessary, be certain that the blade is sharp to prevent tearing the grass tips. Set the blade on your lawnmower to cut the grass at 2 1/2 inches to avoid scalping. (A mulching blade will eliminate the need to rake or bag the clippings, prevent thatch buildup, and the clippings will provide food for the lawn.) Publishers Note: Thanks to the to GardenHelper.com for providing this month’s Urban Garden.

Old Town Crier


Piano Jam 5

HIGH NOTES

RON POWERS

(Ode to Kygo) by GH Hat The word enigma is defined as “a person or thing that is mysterious, puzzling, or difficult to understand”. It’s also an accurate description of an artist I’ve been fascinated with since he first hit the music scene back in 2016. G.H. Hat is a multigenre producer, remixer, composer, and performer. Over the years, he has strung together one of the most interesting and unpredictable bodies of work I’ve ever seen. He’s charted on Billboard multiple times for his pop/dance club/EDM music. He’s remixed and released a Gobsmacking 290 classical compositions. Additionally, his EDM instrumentals have had a huge impact, and he’s essentially forged a new musical genre with his enthralling series of piano jams. As other reviewers have noted “G.H. Hat’s creative process has evolved into one of the most highly regarded sounds on the market” and “The way he utilizes the benefits of modern production software puts his skill on par with that of a classical composer”. I recently was granted access to an advanced copy of GH Hat’s latest installment in his piano-jams series. The song is called “Piano Jam 5 (Ode to Kygo)” and I’m excited to share my thoughts with you about it here. “Piano Jam 5” is an instrumental that begins with a single kick drum and crash cymbal accompanied by a reversed piano chord that swells into a solitary bass line. The bass line delivers a tough and steady feeling while dashes of lead guitar and pick slides are sprinkled in. As one writer accurately put it while referring to G.H. Hat’s music, “It’s almost impossible to listen … and not feel energized after”. Additionally, we hear a descending piano melody that shimmers and mingles with the bass and guitar. G.H. then picks up the pace by adding percussive synth notes that both increase the energy of the song and expand the song’s sonic pallet. As the percussive synth notes move forward, the guitar and piano elements are further expanded creating a compelling shape and texture in the music. For the next section of the song, the percussive synth drops out and a buzzing yet smooth-sounding synth melody is introduced. A sweeping EQ filter is added to the synth melody. The filter starts by introducing only low frequencies and then gradually introduces the frequencies giving the music an exciting rising feeling. Guitar and bass dance around the synth while the music builds and then releases into a melancholy piano melody. Here the percussive synth sounds make another appearance creating an interesting contrast to the sad piano melody with an upbeat and positive feeling. This sort of depth and irony runs through so much of G.H. Hat’s music and I’m sure has a lot to do with why one writer said, “G.H. Hat… is on his way to becoming one of the most anticipatory acts in the EDM arena.” G.H. Hat is a marvel in that he transitions from classical to EDM, to pop music with seemingly no effort. He exploded onto Billboard’s Dance Club chart with his first and second pop/ dance club/EDM songs and, from what I’m hearing, a third pop song is on the way. A dance club newcomer, he glided onto the dance club charts outperforming and charting higher than songs by such icons as Justin Bieber, Drake, David Guetta and Cardi B. Yes, as I first said he’s an enigma. But, in the meantime, “Piano Jam 5” offers more than enough enjoyment to keep his listeners entertained. All this leads me to concur with the words of one writer when he said, “My guess is that years from now when the world looks back on this era in music, it’s likely they won’t remember any EDM artists as strongly as they’ll remember G.H. Hat…” If you’d like to learn more about G.H. Hat you can find him on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If you’d like to listen to Piano Jam 5 or any of G.H. Hat’s other incredible music you can find it on Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube, and most any other place digital music is streamed or sold. About the Author: Ron Powers is an independent A&R specialist and music industry consultant and is constantly searching for, discovering and writing about new talent. Old Town Crier

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.

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.

April 2022 | 11


THE LAST WORD

MIRIAM R. KRAMER

CHAOS CONTROL In troubled times, blunt ‘Reacher’ provides a respite

W

hat do you read when a terrible war takes over television and social media, horrifying you and making you feel helpless to do anything to change the situation? As I sat down to write, I suddenly realized that my reading this past month has been pushed in a very unusual direction by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which started on February 24. Assuredly some mental relief has arrived in reading all the Jack Reacher books written by Lee Child. An action series like this is not my typical choice. Yet as a speed reader, I compulsively swept through Child’s many books because of the way their themes, tone, and structure come together in easily read works suitable for beach vacations or airplanes. Mostly aimed at men, these muscular books, and Jack Reacher the flawed hero, provide satisfying and instinctive solutions to difficult problems. Jack Reacher is a loner, the star of this long-running show. As a military brat and a former member of the Army Military Police, he has had a peripatetic international upbringing, with a French mother, a brother, and a Marine father who moved multiple times to bases around the world. Mostly called Reacher, he has few close friends and no living relatives in most of the books and short stories. He is an army of one, with his own strongly instilled code of conduct and an unyielding, vigilante sense of justice. In attending multiple schools 12

April 2022

Jack Reacher is a fictional character created by British author Lee Child who has written more than 30 novels and short stories with Reacher as the dangerous protagonist. growing up, along with training for the military, he learned to fight bullies hard and dirty to win at all costs. At 6’5” and 250 lbs., he can confront and dispatch predators with great ease. As the founder of the Army Military Police, 110th MP Special Investigations, he serves in a very unpopular part of the Army, but one that suits his intense powers of observation and tenacious desire for the truth.

The series starts with Jack Reacher leaving the service some years after the Cold War is over. He no longer feels useful as the military is pushing people towards retirement to reduce its forces. He has also angered one too many superiors with his independent attitude, so he takes an honorable discharge and decides to become a traveler, thumbing rides or taking buses from one city to another on a whim. In one city he takes a short-

term job as a bouncer, in another he digs pools. Having grown up with an itinerant life overseas, Reacher decides to crisscross the US in retirement. Along the way he finds trouble—in his mind, as Congressman John Lewis once said, “good trouble”—in which he solves mysteries, rights wrongs, and beats up criminals and bullies. LAST WORD > PAGE 13

Old Town Crier


LAST WORD | FROM PAGE 12

He uses his sense of focus, strongly defined values, basic kindness, and implacable need to settle problems either peacefully or violently, depending on the situation. In the process, despite often looking like a vagrant, he charms women, often those in law enforcement. Author Lee Child describes violence viscerally as Reacher deals out unforgiving punishment to “the bad guys.” I took the books for what they were. I also found them quite uneven, although I raced through all of them. There were several books or novellas out of chronological order, telling stories of cases Reacher solves before he retires from the service. As a military brat, I found these stories to be the most compelling. Giving him context and structure made his adventures more appealing. Occasionally Child also comes up with some ingenious premises that hook you from the very beginning, such as the book in which Reacher hitches a ride and realizes that one of his fellow passengers in the car is being kidnapped. Sometimes Child’s pace is a steady, tedious tread with too much detail on dull, flat landscapes and unnecessary characters. He may do that purposefully to inhabit his hero’s mindset. Reacher takes a methodical approach towards solving mysteries and problems that requires him to sift through tedious minutiae patiently. As a lone wolf free of everyday responsibilities, the character of Jack Reacher probably appeals to many stuck in jobs they dislike, wanting to travel wherever they want on a whim with no responsibilities. Since his sense of right and wrong is clearly defined, he rarely finds himself as indecisive as his readers might be. He does not care whether he is liked,

and makes decisions that might satisfy only him, although he weighs others’ welfare in the balance. Reacher’s power in fighting bullies is also very appealing, as is his ability to win fights and solve problems that he willingly takes on along the way. In short, he is a clear cut, albeit flawed hero, a purposeful hobo nick-named “Sherlock Homeless” by a previous co-worker. He regularly throws away his dirty clothes and buys clean ones to avoid carrying even something as small as a suitcase. His lack of baggage, literal and figurative, makes him see the world more clearly, and his vigilante justice is swift and unmerciful. Yet Child paints him as a fundamentally good man—one whose straightforward understanding of the world and how to solve its problems by the end of the book assuredly made him, for me, a respite. Right now, we see overwhelming, overlapping scenes of chaos as refugees stream out of bombed Ukrainian towns in scenes reminiscent of World War II. We do not know when and how this conflict will end. We want the ability to solve this terrible war as quickly and humanely as possible. We want certainty. I recommend Season 1 of the series Reacher on Amazon Prime if you enjoy the books. The lead actor, Alan Ritchson, is very well cast, and the series is fairly faithful to the first book written about Reacher, Killing Floor, while keeping the action lively. I am doing what I can to help solve this problem by ending my review with a list of some charities vetted through the Better Business Bureau’s Give.org, GuideStar, and Charity Navigator. They will help you to donate wisely to Ukrainian recipients instead of paying for an organization’s excessive overhead.

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The descriptions below originally come from Patch.com. THE AMERICAN RED CROSS has had teams in Ukraine for eight years, and it is now providing food, hygiene products, blankets, medical supplies, trauma kits and household assistance, as well as first-aid training in bomb shelters and metro stations. CARE USA, in partnership with People in Need, aims to reach 4 million people with emergency assistance — particularly families, women and girls, and the elderly who are likely to suffer the most from this crisis. DIRECT RELIEF works directly with Ukraine’s Ministry of Health and other regional partners to provide medical aid from oxygen concentrators to critical-care medications, while at the same time preparing to offer longer-term medical assistance to people who are displaced or affected by the conflict. GLOBALGIVING says eight years of armed conflict in eastern Ukraine have already killed thousands and thrown millions into crisis, but full-scale war is having “catastrophic consequences,” made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic. The charity provides shelter, food, and clean water for refugees, along with health and psychological support and access to education and economic assistance. THE INTERNATIONAL RESCUE COMMITTEE is on the ground in Poland to support the approximately 1.06 million Ukrainians who fled there to escape the Russian invasion. Donations help the organization provide food, medical care, and other emergency support services.

Old Town Crier

THE KYIV INDEPENDENT, an English-language publication launched three months ago on the principles of independent journalism, needs help to continue publishing as the crisis deepens. MENNONITE CENTRAL COMMITTEE has worked in Ukraine since 1920, when its soup kitchens fed thousands of starving families. Since the beginning of the current conflict, the organization has focused on helping people displaced by the crisis. MERCY CORPS has teams on the ground in Ukraine, Poland, and Romania, where funding is provided to local organizations based on humanitarian needs they’ve identified as most urgent. In 2014, Mercy Corps helped 200,000 Ukrainians with emergency cash, food, water, and sanitation supplies. SAVE THE CHILDREN, which has been providing humanitarian aid to children and their families in Ukraine since 2014, says 400,000 of the refugees are children who are at risk of hunger, illness, trafficking, and abuse. Donations provide immediate assistance, such as food, water, hygiene kits, psychological support, and cash. UNICEF is on the ground in Ukraine to provide safe water, health care and other protections to children. Donations are 100 percent tax-deductible, and the organization retains less than 3 percent of funds for administrative costs. THE U.N. WORLD FOOD PROGRAM USA says a $75 donation provides a family with an emergency box containing enough food for an entire month.

April 2022 | 13


GALLERY BEAT

F. LENNOX CAMPELLO

“Impostrophe” by Shana Kohnstamm. Hand-dyed wool, wire - 47” x 24” x 12

“Stepping Off” by Patricia De Poel Wilberg. Glass, Enamel - 24' x 24'

Hand Crafted at The BlackRock Center The BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown is just far enough from the capital region so as to not “officially” be part of the DMV. It is nonetheless a key member of the cultural tapestry of the Mid-Atlantic region and one can always count with

a strong exhibition program in its beautiful galleries. Through April 15 there’s a fascinating group show curated by Rula Jones, the current gallery director. Titled “HAND CRAFTED”, the show is described as “a group

“Birds and Women” by Felisa Federman. Fiber, mixed media on canvas - 22” x 26” 14

April 2022

exhibition that explores the role of craftsmanship in contemporary art and across a variety of media including wool, ceramic, glass, paper, fiber, porcelain, etc.” This group exhibition features over 55 multimedia works by 23 artists from the Mid-Atlantic region. If you are a constant reader, then you know that I am a strong proponent of craftsmanship in the visual arts – there’s no substitute for developing the skill to draw, paint, etch, sculpt, etc. And there’s no shortcut – it is all practice, learning from errors, learning how to use your errors, and learning when to stop. The exhibition’s curator Rula Jones notes that, “Concept and craftsmanship, the latter defined as strong knowledge of material manipulation, have occasionally been oppositional in modern and contemporary art. However, these works show high levels of artistry and skill, while also presenting very strong purpose and theory. Artists in this exhibition use materials often associated with craft and elevate them through contemporary concerns. The works on view address a variety

of both universal and contemporary issues including loss, identity, the environment, humanity and nature through a variety of media including ceramic, glass, fiber, wool, silk, beads, paper, porcelain etc. This exhibition celebrates the diversity of theory, process and materiality in contemporary art, suggesting that the boundary between craft and fine art remains as elusive as ever.” My favorites from this very strong show spanned quite a range of media and subject matter – perhaps evidence of Ms. Jones’ “diversity of theory” proposal. For starters, I was immediately drawn to the unusual coloring and positioning of “Impostrophe” by Shana Khonstamm. This attractive sculpture is made of hand-dyed wool and wire, and manages to store within it that elusive quality of a beautiful oddity in the sense of the way the colors help to deliver a surreal message which is then compounded by the physical structure of the upside down head. Erwin Timmers has been a “green artist” since even before the term was coined a couple of decades ago. The Dutch-born artist and one of the founders of the Washington Glass School, is part of that school’s GALLERY BEAT > PAGE 15

Old Town Crier


GALLERY BEAT| FROM PAGE 14

influential triumvirate (Timmers, Tim Tate, and Michael Janis), perhaps the three leading artists on the planet who dragged the “craft” of glass and shoved it inside the pristine white walls of “fine arts” galleries – they’re the Stieglitzes of the glass world! For this show Timmers flexes some of his better-known glass series, such as the sculptural pieces made by casting rubber band shapes into glass, or discarded plastic bottles, repurposed in glass with environmental warnings. In “Stepping Off ” by Patricia de Poel Wilberg, we are treated to an artist delivering a gorgeous work employing three separate and demanding skills and media: painting, enameling, and glass-making. The artist pulls it all together, and her mastery of these media is a perfect example of what the curator means in her earlier statement.

Another multimedia master is Felisa Federman, who for decades has been refining her art processes to deliver work that intrigues the viewer and pulls them in with a resonance elicited by the careful layering of the diverse media used to create the works. I also liked Kanika Sircar’s intelligent and elegant stoneware, and Sookkyung Park’s impossibly beautiful origami sculptures. Artists included in the exhibition are: Lisa Battle, Helen Blumen, Karin Birch, Mei Mei Chang, Ceci Cole McInturff, Linda Colsh, Barbara Joann Combs, Andrea Finch, Felisa Federman, Sarah J. Hull, Noelani Jones, Shana Kohnstamm, Rebecca Murtaugh, Phyllis Mayes, Mitchell Noah, Sara Parent-Ramos, Sookkyung Park, Margaret Polcawich, Paulette Privott, Allan Rosenbaum, Kanika Sircar, Erwin Timmers, and Patricia de Poel Wilberg. The exhibition runs through April 15, 2022.

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“Contain / Sustain” by Erwin Timmers. Recycled cast glass - 4”h x 8”w x 3”d

ART& ANTIQUES ANTIQUES Spurgeon-Lewis Antiques 112 N. Columbus Street BW Art, Antiques & Collectibles 108 N. Fayette Street Imperfections Antiques 1210 King Street The Antique Guild 113 N. Fairfax Street Silverman Galleries 110 N. St. Asaph Street

Henry Street Antiques 115 S. Henry Street

Icon Galleria 101 N. Union Street

Curzon Hill Antiques 108 S. Columbus Street

B&B Art Gallery 215 King Street

The Hour 1015 King Street

Gallery West 1213 King Street

A Galerie 315 Cameron Street

Enamelist’s Gallery 105 N. Union Street

Random Harvest 810 King Street Acme Mid-Century + Modern 128 S. Royal Street

Printmakers, Inc. 105 N. Union Street Kelly’s Art & Frame 510 N. Washington Street

Van Bommel Antiek Hous 1007 King Street

Oerth Gallery 420 S. Washington Street

Lloyd’s Row 119 S. Henry Street

Jeffrey Winter Fine Arts 110A S. Columbus Street Johnston Matthew 105 N. Union 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

Silverman Galleries 110 N. St. Asaph Street

Verdigris Vintage 1215 King Street

St. George Gallery 105 N. Alfred Street

Cochran David 105 N. Union Street

Cavalier Antiques 400 Prince Street

The Art League 105 Union Street

Betty Grisham Studio 105 N. Union Street

Sumpter Priddy III 323 S. Washington Street

Local Colour Old Town 218 N. Lee Street

Imagine Artwear 112 King Street

Old Town Crier

Moonlight Becomes You Day or Night

Ah, Moonlight–as in one of our

very favorite designers–has a new collection of spring and summer tops and jackets which are in the shop and online right now. Easy to wear and easy-care, our Moonlight pieces are very becoming and available in sizes S to XXL. Best of all, Moonlight pieces are made in the USA. Stop at the shop or visit us online soon!

Huddy Studio 105 N. Union Street Mezzanine Multiples 105 N. Union Street

1124 King Street • Alexandria, Virginia 22314 (703) 548-1461 • imagineartwear.com

Shop Online Anytime www.imagineartwear.com

April 2022 | 15


TAKE PHOTOS, LEAVE FOOTPRINTS

SCOTT DICKEN

10 Reasons

S

Namibia Shoud be Your Next Vacation Destination

tunning scenery, abundant wildlife, and plenty of adventure. Namibia has it all. Despite having spent over three months in this otherworldly country, I can say I haven’t seen even half of what Namibia has to offer. It’s also one of the easiest and safest of the African safari destinations to self-drive. As a result, companies catering to visitors who want to ‘go it alone’ are becoming ever more prevalent, catering to everything from budget camping to 5-star luxury. But what makes Namibia the ideal destination? Below are ten great answers to that question.

…..And then Sandboarding Down Some of Them in Swakopmund

Climbing some of the World’s Biggest Sand Dunes

Enjoying Wonderful Food at Every Turn

Dune 45 is one of the more popular dunes to climb in Sossusvlei National Park and stands at a daunting 85m high. But at 325m high, Big Daddy is the biggest dune in town and offers spectacular views from the top. 16

April 2022

Swakopmund is a small town on Namibia’s west coast, and is regarded as the country’s capital city of adventure sports. Given its abundance of sand dunes, one of the most popular local activities is sandboarding. My one piece of advice on sandboarding is to not be fooled by anyone proclaiming that sandboarding is easier (or the landing softer) than snowboarding. Having nearly cracked my head open like a ripe coconut, I can safely say it isn’t! Other sports you might want to give a go are dune quad biking, land yachting, surfing, wind surfing, paragliding and sky diving.

Namibia hosts an eclectic mix of cuisine; from the locally inspired biltong and potjiekos, (bush stew) to the colonial influences of German cuisine. In Windhoek, Namibia’s capital city, you could choose to visit the Namibian Institute for Culinary

Education (NICE) for dinner, or head to Joe’s Beerhouse for a more authentic bush braai (BBQ). Swakopmund on the other hand is a heavily Germaninfluenced town. As a result, it’s dotted with German restaurants and brauhaus’ where you can get your fill of schnitzels, pork knuckles, bratwurst, and eisbein.

Getting Up Close and Personal with Wildlife at Okonjima Okonjima is private safari reserve sandwiched between Windhoek and Etosha National Park (the latter being LEAVE FOOTPRINTS > PAGE 17

Old Town Crier


LEAVE FOOTPRINTS | FROM PAGE 16

the country’s most notable national park and safari destination). It’s the perfect place to stop over for a night or two on your way around the country’s classic self-drive route. The Reserve is centered on the operations of the Africat Foundation; utilizing the vast expanses of land that Okonjima sits on to rehabilitate carnivores for release back into the wild. Okonjima offers an unbelievable chance to track cheetah and wild dogs on foot.

Tracking Desert Adapted Wildlife and Immersing yourself in Ancient Art in Damarland Damaraland is probably one of the most scenic areas of Namibia. The real highlight of a Damaraland safari is tracking down the rare desert-adapted elephant and black rhino. Healthy populations of gemsbok, springbok, kudu, Hartman’s mountain zebra, and giraffe are also regularly sighted. If you’re looking for culture and history then also take some time out from safari to visit Twyfelfontein, which is home to one of the largest collections of petroglyphs in Africa.

Capturing a Sunrise over the Desert in a Hot Air Balloon We all know that Africa has some of the most spectacular sunrises and sunsets anywhere on earth. What better way to capture the moment than from the air, soaring silently above the reds and oranges of the scorched deserts of Sossusvlei. Even if you aren’t a fan over getting up at an ungodly hour, and even if you can’t usually stomach the thought of engaging with other people before your daily caffeine intake, you won’t regret it on this occasion. After witnessing the spectacular day break, you’ll be treated to a champagne breakfast after ‘touchdown’. There are worse ways to start your day!

adventure. Just outside of downtown are stables which offer the chance for a horseback ride amongst the stunning scenery. For those of you who, like me, aren’t experienced riders beware of the thorn bushes. Unfortunately for me my wife, who’s an experienced rider, trotted off with our guide and left me to ‘navigate’ my horse directly into a thorn bush. The next few hours were spent plucking thorns out of my arms and legs and tending to severe lacerations.

Kayaking with Seals in Walvis Bay I don’t think there’s a better way to get up close and personal with the aquatic wildlife along Namibia’s coast than to paddle your way out into the lagoon in Walvis Bay by Kayak. Sure, you could head out on a boat for dolphin and seal watching – certainly

a more relaxed and luxurious option (you’ll be sipping champagne and chowing down on hors d’oeuvres before you even leave the port) - but I’d much prefer to get down at eye level with the wildlife (including Walvis Bay’s flamingo population). This might be more work, but you’ll be right in the middle of the action as the seals swim around the kayak.

Meeting the Herero The Herero people are a pastoral cattle breeding tribe believed to have migrated from the east African lakes about 350 years ago. Today, there are about 100,000 Herero people in Namibia; mostly found in the central and eastern areas of the country. The importance of cattle to the Herero people is displayed in the traditional dress of Herero women; particularly

their headwear, which represents the horns of cattle. As you travel through central and eastern Namibia you’ll often see Herero women on the roadside selling tribal crafts. If you want to learn more about what Namibia has to offer then check out the takephotosleavefootprints.com

Hunting for Shipwrecks Along the Skeleton Coast The Skeleton Coast is famed for its shipwrecks. Even if you don’t have the time to travel further up Namibia’s infamous west coast, there are several wrecks dotted between Swakopmund and Cape Cross, both of which are on the standard tourist itinerary. Although the more spectacular shipwrecks are farther north, requiring a fly-in to the remote beaches of the Skeleton Coast, those close to Swakopmund are more than enough to quench the thirst of the amateur shipwreck hunter.

Horseback Riding in the Foothills of Windhoek Namibia’s capital, Windhoek, is the starting point for a Namibian Old Town Crier

April 2022 | 17


POINTS ON PETS

KRISTEN BIELING

RUNNING INTO SPRING How to Keep Your Pets Active and Safe

I

n the DC region, April brings the first real sign of spring after a long and cold winter. April means longer days with more sunshine and time for people to play in our expansive network of parks and trails. It also signals it’s time for the annual White House Easter Egg Roll and the blooming of our world-famous cherry blossoms. For runners and fitness enthusiasts in the area though, April means one thing: the Boston

Marathon. Every year on the third Monday of April, thousands of runners toe the start line for the renowned marathon, which is 26.2 miles. According to the Boston Athletic Association (BAA), which owns and sponsors the race, over 30,000 people are entered for 2022 and they expect over 500,000 spectators. Runners train for months, sometimes years, to qualify. While training for a marathon or engaging in other forms of exercise will keep us fit, we also need to ensure our furry friends stay fit too. Refer to these tips for exercising with your dog, according to American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA):

Ask an expert Always consult your vet before beginning a fitness regimen for your pooch. Rule out any health concerns and watch for pain or discomfort during or after exercise.

Younger dogs Remember that pups under 18 months old shouldn’t participate in long periods of jogging or running as their bones are still forming. Brisk, 18

April 2022

shorter walks are a good substitute during this time. Also consider a less intense game of fetch in your yard or at a local park versus long runs. Training time: Runners crossing the finish line in record times at the Boston Marathon certainly didn’t jump off the couch and into their running shoes. Just like humans, dogs need sufficient time to become conditioned for longer runs. Start slowly and add a few extra minutes of running each week to build up their endurance.

Too hot to handle Despite our typically lovely spring and fall seasons in the DC region, summer is usually hot and humid. If it feels too hot and sticky for you, your pooch will feel the same. Additionally, unlike humans, dogs cannot sweat to stay cool and run a risk of overheating during hot days. The pavement can also burn their paws. Consider shorter, less intense workouts during hot weather or change your running schedule to the early morning or late evening when the sun is less brutal. Always remember to bring water for both yourself and your pup.

Identification Most importantly, never let your dog off leash unless you’re in a safe area where this is permitted. Ensure your pup always wears its collar with updated contact information. Although cat lovers may wish they could take their feline friend on long walks with them, this is unfortunately not the case for most. Fiercely independent, cats prefer to go their own way and are happiest in their known environment. However, there’s still plenty of ways to ensure they get the exercise they need to thrive. Refer to these tips from the Humane Society of the United States:

Jump around Cats are natural climbers and are unparalleled jumpers. Consider purchasing a “cat tree” for your home. Sold at many online retailers and at local pet stores, cat trees come in all shapes and sizes to fit whatever space you have. These structures create fun, indoor climbing opportunities for your cat that they might not otherwise have. Consider placing the cat tree near a window or tree so your cat can make friends with the birds outside. Additionally, having their own specific structure may keep them from climbing on other household items, like your fridge or kitchen counters…

Playtime Carve out time each day to engage your cat. Try out different toys, like balls with bells, ribbons, feathers, string, and their arch nemesis: the dreaded red dot laser pointer! Local and online retailers also sell cat puzzles that allow you to hide treats inside. These keep your cat’s mind active and help simulate hunting in the wild. Sometimes the best toys are the ones that aren’t toys at all. Consider recycling cardboard boxes into makeshift cat forts or letting your cat hide in paper bags from the grocery store. Stow away any toys or materials that could inadvertently harm them when you’re not around, like strings or ribbons.

Throw a curve ball Change it up so your cat doesn’t get bored. Is there a specific catnip toy they like? Let them enjoy it for a while before exchanging it with something new.

POINTS ON PETS > PAGE 19

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POINTS ON PETS | FROM PAGE 18

Your cat will be more interested and likely stay engaged for longer.

Create a catio Are you handy? If so, why not build a “catio” (a patio for your cat)! Creating an enclosed, safe, outdoor structure will allow your cat to feel the breeze in its fur from the comfort and safety of home! If you already have a balcony or porch, some netting and staples could be the perfect quick fix for a catio.

Safety first Even your indoor cat should be suited up with identification and a collar. Open windows and doors provide a tempting escape route for cats, especially during warmer months. Consider microchipping your cat with updated contact information. This could ensure your pet’s safety in the event they are separated from you. Let’s savor this perfect weather and get ourselves and our pets some exercise. Fitness and health isn’t a sprint; it’s a marathon!

VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT KINGSTREETCATS.ORG

FOR UPCOMING ADOPTION EVENTS

About the Author: You can find Kristen on the W&OD and Mount Vernon trails training for her next race and stopping mid-run to pet all the dogs.

Re: Sources Professional Pet Sitting Organizations National Association of Professional Pet Sitters Find a Local NAPPS Pet Sitter | The National Association of Professional Pet Sitters

Pet Sitters International (PSI) The leading pet-sitter association

Selected Alexandria-area Animal Shelters/Rescues

The author‘s 2 cats, Atticus and Harrison on their Arlington “Catio” where they make the rules.

Animal Welfare League of Alexandria 4101 Eisenhower Avenue Alexandria, VA 22304 703-838-4774 alexandriaanimals.org/ Animal Welfare League of Arlington 2650 S Arlington Mill Drive Arlington, VA 22206 (703) 931-9241 www.awla.org

Fairfax County Animal Shelter 4500 West Ox Road Fairfax, VA 22030 703-830-1100 airfaxcounty.gov/animalshelter/ King Street Cats 25 S. Dove Street Alexandria, VA 22314 703-231-7199 kingstreetcats.org/

PETS

OF THE

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

PISCO Who’s ready for the weather to warm up? This pup! 9-year-old Pisco is all about the outdoor activities, but who wants to hang out in the cold? Luckily, with spring having sprung, Pisco can show off his amazing leash manners on long leisurely walks or enjoy a super-fun game of Tug-of-War without losing his footing on the ice! And did he mention all of the amazing spring smells?!?

LARS Office Admin Lars reporting for duty! This helpful fellow is exactly what your work-from-home set-up needs, and he guarantees to increase productivity, from finding the highest perch from which to supervise to QCing your keyboard, as many as 20 times a day. Just thinking of what you can accomplish with such a productive pet on your team?!?

ERIC Eric may be small, but he sees himself as a Gentleman Adventurer, exploring the world on his stubby legs. From re-arranging his kennel space to traipsing the couch on movie night, Eric can do it all, and pretty quickly too when there are yummy fruit treats at sake. Schedule time to say hi to Eric today!

Schedule time to meet with any of these amazing adoptables by emailing Adopt@AlexandriaAnimals.org or calling 703.746.4774 opt. 2. April 2022 | 19


CARIBBEAN CONNECTION CARIBBEAN JOURNAL STAFF Now that we're all working remotely

Wouldn't you REALLY rather work from the beach?

NAPLES FL TOPS THE LIST FOR BEST BEACHES IN USA BEACHFRONT SEASONAL RENTAL AVAILABLE Naples has again claimed the top spot by Travel and Leisure and several other groups for best beach town in the US. The jewel of SW Florida’s Paradise Coast has sugar sand beaches, turquoise clear waters and every amenity worthy of a world class resort town. Seasonal lease of well furnished 2BR 2BA condo in the very best beachfront location is available this winter (90 day minimum lease term). No finer view from inside and better beach access at any price and most rentals in area start at twice the price. Includes carport parking, heated pool, elevators and privacy; uncrowded beach and, onsite management. Photo is the view from inside! Call (no texts), email or visit our Facebook page @NaplesOceanfrontCondo. 540-364-9480 • hopespringsfarm@gmail.com

Chef David Benjamin, aka “Chef Benji” in the kitchen at Blue 11.

Spotlighting Local Cuisine On St. Thomas

k

Ann Street Gardens

y

ey west getawa

Always a terrific food destination, St. Thomas is in the midst of a gastronomic renaissance, with a renewed focus on traditional classics and a new push to highlight local cuisine. Indeed, more and more eateries are putting the food of St. Thomas front and center, from food trucks to fine dining and everything in between. It all adds up to what is a full-fledged local food movement, where the emphasis is not just freshly-caught fish, but about putting the flavors and culture of St. Thomas on the table.

Here are our favorite St. Thomas eateries for exciting local food, from island institutions to hip, upstart eateries.

Blue 11 No restaurant better exemplifies St. Thomas’ new food movement than this. It’s called Blue Eleven, and it’s the debut restaurant of leading Virgin Island chef David Benjamin, formerly of the Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas. The Yacht Haven Grande outpost is a fine-dining love CARRIBEAN CONNECTION > PAGE 21

Key West Getaway One Block from Sloppy Joe’s Contact: historichideaways.com • 1-800-654-5131 20

April 2022

Chef Benji turns entries into tasty fine art at Blue 11 Cuisine. Old Town Crier


CARIBBEAN CONNECTION | FROM PAGE 21

letter to island food, with an exclusive tasting menu that lets guests embark on a culinary journey (including a wine-pairing option) through either seven, nine or 11 courses. With a focus on local ingredients, that means dishes like pan-seared wahoo, a brilliant spin on callaloo and jerk chicken with plantain gnocchi, among others.

CLIFFHANGER

Honey drizzled Johnny cakes at Twist 340.

Twist 340 Set in the increasingly hot Yacht Haven Grande marina, Twist, the brainchild of Dimitri and Tamra James, is all about Caribbean cuisine — and puts a new spin on traditional island favorites. That means dishes like honey-drizzled johnny cakes, curry chicken sliders, jerk bowls and trios of the island’s famous pate.

Gladys’ Cafe One of St. Thomas’ most prominent places to eat, Gladys’ is a Charlotte Amalie institution, with out-of-this-world Caribbean signatures: think curry goat, stewed oxtails, jerk chicken, panfried grouper and, of course, its “Ole Wife” fish. Make sure you get a side of fungi with creole sauce and thank us later.

Broiled Lobster, Petite Pump Room style.

SEE OUR AY HOMEAW 5 AT #28629 LISTING AY.COM HOMEAW

As featured on HGTV and winner of “Bang For Your Buck” in St. Thomas. This recently renovated villa resides on the edge of a cliff 200 feet above the Atlantic Ocean crashing onto the rocks below. The best location on the island—a private, secure, gated community of luxury villas—the villa offers spectacular views of the Atlantic and various islands including St. John, Jost Van Dyke and Tortola. The main house has 3 bedrooms with a detached cottage with its’ own queen size bed. Large deck, pool and spa. Phone 703 628-9005 • Fax 703 765-5900

Petite Pump Room It’s been a hallmark of St. Thomas for more than fifty years, first with Anna and Douglas Watson and now with their son Michael, whose family is expertly stewarding this USVI institution. It’s the essence of St. Thomas - fresh locally caught fish, soursop ice cream, sautéed conch, and a must-try rum punch.

PlantTastic Yes, St. Thomas’ food movement now includes a vegan option — and a food truck to boot. It’s called PlantTastic, a truck serving up vegan and pescatarian dishes like black bean cakes with mango salsa, vegan crab cakes, falafel and freshcatch poke bowls. It’s set in a location in Frenchtown by Radio One. Publishers Note: We are happy to partner with Alexander Britell, Founder and Editor in Chief of the Miami, Florida based Caribbean Journal and his staff contributing to the OTC and our Caribbean Connection Section. Check out the popular online magazine/website at caribjournal.com for valuable information on all fabulous travel options and things of interest in the Caribbean.

Old Town Crier

21 April April 2022 | 21


ROAD TRIP

BY BOB TAGERT

IT’S GOOD TO BE BACK Rehoboth Beach and the Boardwalk Plaza In an uncertain world where everything seems to change daily, we decided to take a road trip to a true constant...Rehoboth Beach and the ever constant Atlantic Ocean. I can remember the years of going to Ocean City, Maryland and then Rehoboth Beach to enjoy the sunshine and the beach activities. Today I have grown into more of a spectator than participant but the consistency of the ocean rushing onto the beach and then receding has not changed while the world around us seems to be falling apart at times. The sun and the moon still rise every 24 hours over the beautiful Atlantic Ocean. That magic and romance we felt back then is still there today although a bit more jaded. In time measured it is clear that we change much quicker than the world around us and that is why a return trip to mother ocean is necessary. Our weather window of March 16-18 looked to cover all the bases. 70 degrees and sunny on the 16th, 50 degrees and rainy on St. Patrick’s Day and another 70+ degree day for the return drive on the

22

April March2022 2022

March 2022

18th. After a late morning start we took a pleasant window-down drive from Old Town and arrived at our destination just in time to check into the beautiful Boardwalk Plaza Hotel. This was not our first trip to the Plaza as we have visited before and there seems to be no reason to look for any other accommodations. The Plaza Hotel is perfectly located on the boardwalk and only two blocks from Rehoboth Avenue...the main drag. With the aforementioned spectator mentality, we find mid-March to the end of April to be a perfect time to go. Prices are reduced, accommodations are plentiful and street parking is free. Another bonus is that children are in school and the whole vibe is laid back with a peaceful easy feeling about it all, and it all begins when you enter the Boardwalk Plaza doors. There is a doorman there to help you with your ROAD TRIP > PAGE 23

Old Town Crier

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ROAD TRIP | FROM PAGE 22

entry and transporting your bags to your room. The other reception committee, besides the cool staff behind the desk, is the trio of parrots...Emro, Peanut and Moose. Chances are good that Emro will be busy working at the front desk perched on a computer screen while Moose (the smallest bird) may be prancing on top of his cage looking for attention and Peanut (the largest bird in the menagerie) will be quietly observing everything from his perch while letting out an occasional whistle and offering an offhand comment ever so often. After checking in with the welcoming committee, we took the elevator to the fourth floor and our ocean front room. There are only four floors to the hotel and the fourth floor is reserved for adults only, which in the summer time is a bonus. It takes your room key to get to the fourth floor on the elevator and that floor has access to the rooftop hot tub. The rooms are perfect for a beach town. When you walk through the door you are in the bedroom section with a beautiful antique chest of drawers and a closet and a flat screen television on one side and two queen size beds that are incredibly comfortable and make falling asleep easy on the other. The next room is the vanity with a Kuerig stocked with coffee, teas, and hot chocolate. The vanity is also in this space with the bathroom facilities and shower behind it in a separate room. The front room that leads to the balcony is the sitting room complete with

Birds, from left to right, Peanut, Moose, Emro. two plush chairs and table, a writing desk and a large flat screen television. The sliding glass door leads to a small balcony with two chairs and a small table and the sound and sights of the Atlantic. The appointments in the room are impressive with a small bouquet of fresh flowers, turn down service with chocolates and complimentary bottled water provided each day. Don’t miss putting on one of the plush robes that are provided for you to wear during your stay. Although the balcony faces the rising sun, the morning sunlight only slightly reaches the beds as they are offset behind the separating wall. Sleeping late is only a matter of shutting your eyes. The room is a nice size for two but if you try to fit four adults it will tighten up a bit. The Plaza is a full service hotel featuring a large indoor/ outdoor spa pool, Victoria’s Restaurant, a small pub and lounge with live music on certain evenings, a coffee shop and a small gift shop. The indoor soaking pool has air jets to relax the

Happy Hour at Nalu on Rehoboth Avenue. Old Town Crier

muscles and no one under the age of 18 is allowed in it after 8 pm. It is also open 24 hours so you can don one of the plush robes and take your night cap in one of the plastic glasses provided down to the pool for a midnight soak/ swim. Victoria’s restaurant is award winning and is one of the only ones in Rehoboth open for breakfast, lunch and dinner 365 days a year. The pub and restaurant both have outdoor dining right on the boardwalk. This time of year most all of Rehoboth is open so we didn’t want to waste any

MSVtaya.ckDeineiotRn!lax!

more of the nice weather on our first afternoon so we headed out to the boardwalk and walked along the beach for a few blocks and then trekked to one of our favorite purveyor of beverages on Rehoboth Avenue...the Purple Parrot. This is a fun place which also offers Karaoke on select nights. After a bite to eat and a few drinks and lively conversation with the bartender we decided to head across the street to the new Nalu Surf Bar. The Rehoboth location is a sister restaurant to the original located in Dewey where it has been in operation for 15 years. We

always try to stop in a new place on our trips and Nalu is a gem. Nalu is Hawaiian for “wave”, hence the Surf Bar motif. Sporting a thatched roof I figured this is the place for dark rum. They did have Myers but the Captain Morgan was really flowing. Along with our Hawaiian themed cocktails, we had to try a few more appetizers and couldn’t pass up the coconut shrimp and the life changing grilled bacon wrapped pineapple chunks! We will be back… ROAD TRIP > PAGE 43

beach vacation?

ON THE BOARDWALK REHOBOTH BEACH, DE BOARDWALKPLAZA.COM (800)33-BEACH

April 2022 | 23


FROM THE BAY

MICHAELA WATKINS

Spring Sailboat Show Returns to Historic Downtown Annapolis The Annapolis Spring Sailboat Show is set to return to historic downtown Annapolis April 29 May 1. The show will feature new and brokerage boats including catamarans, monohulls, racing boats, family cruisers, daysailers, and inflatables. While climbing aboard an impressive line-up of sailboats is always a major draw, there is so much more to see. Guests are invited to meet with boating clubs and charters companies, shop gear and equipment, and catch up with marine professionals and sailing friends. Novice and seasoned sailors alike are welcome to expand their horizons with a number of educational opportunities: FIRST SAIL WORKSHOP allows first-time sailors to learn the basics and experience the joy of sailing in a 45-minute classroom session followed by 90 minutes on the water with American Sailing Association accredited instructors provided by Sailtime. CRUISERS UNIVERSITY is a classroom-based educational opportunity for bluewater sailors. Its comprehensive curriculum offers a complete range of cruising topics to prepare cruisers to live aboard a boat and begin their boating adventures with confidence. Courses include marine weather forecasting, navigation techniques, diesel maintenance, heavy weather sailing, budgeting, and more. In collaboration with Chesapeake Bay Magazine and Annapolis School of Seamanship, the show also brings a variety of free seminars. Learn from professional captains and experts about a variety of how-to and where-to-go topics including Docking

Taste award-winning wines at

Taste awardof winning wines at theWinery Port of . the Port Leonardtown Leonardtown Winery. Paddle the McIntosh Run water trail. Enjoy a sunset along Breton the galleries showcasing Dine at an outdoor café. Shop the localBay. artists in Southern Maryland’s unique shops and Shepherd’s Old Field only Arts & Entertainment District. Market. Explore the galleries showcasing local artists in Southern Maryland’s only and make Arts & overnight Entertainment District. Located it aheart weekend getaway! in the of St. Mary’s County.

Explore

Stay

The 2022 Boat Show Season kicks off in Annapolis this month. De-Stressed, Get Your Captain’s License, Weekends on the Water - Cruising to towns in the Upper & Middle Bay, Lessons from Sailors Who Log 100 Days on the Water Each Year, and How to Anchor Your Boat. In addition to boarding beautiful sailboats, guests of the SPRING SAILBOAT SHOW may get behind the wheel on land at the BMW exhibit. Browse the allnew, fully electric iX on display or sign up to test drive the iX, i4, M8 or X7 M50i. Test drives are only available Saturday (April 30) and Sunday (May 1) during show hours. For those looking to enhance their visit, the VIP EXPERIENCE sponsored by LaVictoire Finance boasts

exclusive access to a relaxing area at Latitude 38 restaurant, elegant cuisine, and wine and cocktail tastings throughout the day. VIP attendees looking to purchase a boat at the show may connect with LaVictoire Finance in advance for exclusive access to their VIP program, which allows boat buyers to become pre-qualified for marine financing prior to the show, so they may meet with dealers and brokers with financing in hand. Not just about business, the show provides a fun and entertaining weekend for all. THE BREAKTHRU TASTING TENT, sponsored by Breakthru Beverage Maryland, will feature daily tastes from Tito’s Handmade vodka, Brugal 1888, Fishers Island Lemonade, Fleurs De Prairie Rose Languedoc, The Crossings Sauvignon Blanc, and The Callings Wines. Guests over 21 years of age are invited to visit the tent to learn more about the beverages and enjoy complimentary tastings. Outside the show gates, visitors may also enjoy Annapolis restaurants, crab cakes, raw oysters, waterfront bars, glorious sunsets, historic walking tours, strolls through the U.S. Naval Academy, and WEST STREET’S FIRST SUNDAY ARTS FESTIVAL. On Sunday, as the show closes, sailors will gather across the creek at the Eastport Yacht Club for SpinSheet Magazine’s Crew Party. Tickets are available for advance purchase on the Annapolis Boat Shows website. Admission is $20 per person, and children 12 and under are free. There will be no box office on site, so guests are encouraged to prepurchase their tickets online. For more information, visit www.AnnapolisBoatShows.com.

Love Port of Leonardtown Winery

www.POLWinery.com

Dine

VisitStMarysMD.com/leonardtown on the square at

an outdoor cafe.

Enjoy a sunset

along Breton Bay.

LET THE 2022 BOAT SHOWS BEGIN! 2022 BAY BRIDGE BOAT SHOW April 21 – 24, 2022 Bay Bridge Marina, Stevensville, MD 2022 ANNAPOLIS SPRING SAILBOAT SHOW April 29 – May 1, 2022 City Dock, Annapolis, MD CRUISERS UNIVERSITY (SPRING 2022) April 28 – May 1, 2022 Downtown Annapolis, MD 2022 UNITED STATES POWERBOAT SHOW October 6 – 9, 2022 City Dock, Annapolis, MD

VisitStMarysMD.com/leonardtown thelba.org

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March2022 April 2022

2022 UNITED STATES SAILBOAT SHOW October 13 – 17, 2022 City Dock, Annapolis, MD

Old Town Crier


Spring

is just around the corner in SOUTHERN MARYLAND!

“The mind that opens to a new idea never returns to its original size.” — A. Einstein

JOY? WHAT BRINGS YOU For Chuck Floyd, it was 5 Carmen Gambrill paintings!

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April 2022 | 25 25


TO THE BLUE RIDGE

JULIE REARDON

The Rip Off World Of Animal Rescue This month, I’m going to stray from my typical column highlighting happenings in the Blue Ridge a take this opportunity to skewer a sacred cow. Groups calling themselves rescues are not all saints and many are not what they seem. Thanks to our insatiable demand for companion animals and the very successful animal rights driven anti-breeder campaign of the past two decades, the rescue industry is booming, especially for trade in cute little fluffy dogs with big eyes and snub noses. Tax free cash donations flow freely to save horses, and now dogs, from the meat trade. All this easy cash has attracted unsavory scammers, liars and rip off artists out for a tax free quick buck. Yes, tax free. All a rescue group has to do to claim non-profit status is send the IRS a postcard annually stating they make less than $50,000 a year. If they make more than that, they must fill out IRS form 990. More on that below. Not all rescues are bad of course, just as not all breeders are evil. And while shelters might be full of dogs, they’re not the ones people want. And it’s much harder to recoup costs or even adopt out the majority of shelter dogs, because most are pit bulls or mixes—large and often not suitable for families with other pets or small children. Hence, an underground trade of dogs imported from Third World puppy mills has quietly gained a foothold to meet the demand. Savvy horse trading scammers zeroed in on ‘saving’ horses bound for slaughter as a fountain of easy money. Never mind that there are no slaughter houses that process horses anywhere in the U.S., and haven’t been any for over 15 years. But the scammers post on Facebook and social media desperate pleas for money to save horses bound for kill buyers if you don’t immediately donate or pay $1500-2000 so a rescuer can buy it at auction and “save” it. Horses are actually a better donation vehicle than other animals since few people have the space to actually house them but they’ll happily try to save them by sending money. And while there are, in fact, slaughter houses that process horses in Mexico and Canada, these horse traders would have you believe kill buyers routinely pay well over $1000 per horse for animals they then have to truck over 1,000 miles to a processing plant. It’s simply not true—a third grader could see the math does not add up. Horse meat in countries where it’s available, sells for about fifty cents a pound. Compared, for example, to beef, starting at about $4.00 per pound for the cheapest cuts. Horses destined for slaughter sell for $150, maybe $200 tops, not $1500. So some sucker donates $1500 to save a horse pictured on social media from “going to the killers” when in reality the sale price was $200. Add a delivery fee the rescuer may pay to have it delivered from the auction house to their own facility and it still doesn’t add up. Where does the extra $1000 go? Along with the rescued horse, it goes to the rescue as tax free income. Knock the mud and manure off it, fatten it up and the rescued animal can then sell it for an “adoption” fee of $2500 to $5000 or more. In addition to flipping horses, clever rescuers can and do use donated cash for capital improvements to their own property that they lease to the rescue while simultaneously operating lucrative boarding 26 26 April April 2022 2022

Puppies: Do your homework before you bring one home.

This animal is not going to end up as horse meat if you don’t donate. and training operations augmented by laundering donation money. Your tax dollars hard at work. It never ceases to amaze me how gullible otherwise intelligent people are about buying pets. And yes, including rescues because although they may euphemistically call the sale price an adoption fee, if you pay for it you buy it no matter what the fee is called. For decades animal rights activists have spoon fed the population the notion that anyone who intentionally breeds dogs is a despicable cruel exploiter enslaving dogs to breed and live in squalor. “Adopt don’t shop!” is the rallying cry, followed by the untrue but catchy “For every dog bought from a breeder a shelter dog will die.” A rescue dog is, after all, the perfect vehicle for virtue signaling even if it’s not really rescued but bought from a Third World puppy mill and then brokered at a profit through transporters and dealers until it ends up at a retail rescue. Some breeds are so desirable that purebred prices from conscientious breeders approach or exceed 5 figures, so it follows that people who want to save money and virtue-signal by rescuing a dog of that breed happily pay $1200 or more. Some examples of the fiction designed to part people from their money: Dogs that need to be saved (by cash donations) from the Asian meat trade. Yes, a few dogs are eaten as food occasionally in some remote areas of China and Korea but it’s a very tiny and shrinking number. Dogs are not bred nor farmed for the meat trade; it’s too small. Even more egregious: presenting popular breeds like Cavalier King Charles spaniels and French

bulldogs as “meat dogs” saved from those horrid (even if mythical) meat breeders. Let’s look at a typical example. Frenchies are little dogs, and due to their large, brachycephalic heads and small bodies, puppies cannot fit through the birth canal so must be surgically delivered via c-section. Most can’t even be bred naturally; they require artificial insemination. You’d have to be really stupid to believe anyone would spend that kind of money to breed them for meat dogs. Another whopper: purebred Golden retrievers rescued from the hills outside of a village in Turkey looking for adoptive homes, at a price of course. Seriously? Who believes herds of purebreds, much less popular breeds like Goldens, run wild in foreign countries, only mate with others of its breed, and become instantly socialized and suitable for house pets immediately upon importation to the U.S.? But calling it a rescue adoption even though the fee is $1500 for the so-called rescue from Turkey allows virtue signaling that paying $1200 to a breeder does not. There’s even a doozy making the rounds on social media raising funds to help with medical expenses of a burned dog that tried to save its owners from a fire. Only problem: the badly burned dog was really a doctored photo of a Golden retriever with a slice of ham laid across its face. Of course, not all rescues are operated by thieves and scammers, there are plenty of good ones, just as there are also plenty of good breeders. Whether you go with a rescue or purpose-bred pet, it’s buyer beware. Do your research if you are planning to add a dog or cat that you may have for the next 10 or 15 years, before you drive out to look at cute puppies or kittens or view sad-eyed animals seeking homes. Expect to be closely questioned, even grilled; real rescues and breeders want this to be a good fit. If you want a specific breed of dog (especially a popular one) look it up and familiarize yourself with it and go to the national breed club—all breeds have them. Nearly all breeds have a rescue division to rehome dogs of that breed that have been fostered and evaluated by knowledgeable volunteers. With rescue organizations, ask if they are a registered charity and if so, request a copy of their form 990; they’re required by law to provide copies if asked for the 3 most current years. Look them up on charitynavigator.com and often you can view the 990 form online. If they refuse to provide this information, they probably have something to hide and you should look elsewhere. Old Old Town Town Crier Crier


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LET’S EAT

CHEF CHARLES OPPMAN

Time for Easter Dinner ...

Let’s Skip the Ham and Make Some Lamb…Shanks!

W

ith Easter just around the corner, it’s time to break out the lamb recipes. When we think spring lamb, most of think of that boneless roast or a bone-in leg, but let’s try something different. Of course, French cut lamb chops are wonderful, but expensive and lack flavor. Why not do lamb shanks? This is a great cut of lamb for several reasons—fairly inexpensive, bursting with flavor, soft texture and high collagen (when heated, collagen dissolves to provide flavor and gelatinous texture). A meat shank or shin is the portion of meat around the tibia of the animal, the leg bone beneath the knee. Since the leg muscles are well developed they tend to be tough must be braised or slow-baked in the oven. This recipe calls for the braising in the oven. As with any cut of lamb, the shanks are delicious with mint sauce. Please don’t LET'S EAT > PAGE 29

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LET'S EAT | FROM PAGE 28

resort to mint jelly. Fresh mint sauce is a snap to make. You just add mint leaves and a pinch of sugar to the natural juices. This is an easy recipe that you’ll love. One caveat, the bone in lamb shanks can be large (this is a good thing because this means more flavor) so compensate for this when judging how many shanks to cook.

Ingredients •

3-4 pounds of lamb shanks

¼ cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon table salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 cup onion, diced

1 cup celery, diced

2 tablespoon fresh garlic, chopped

4 bay leaves

1 teaspoon thyme leaves

2 cups beef broth, canned is fine

1 tablespoon Worstershire sauce

6 sprigs fresh mint, finely chopped

Method 1. In a heavy skillet or Dutch oven heat the oil over a high flame. Salt and pepper the shanks and sear in hot oil on all sides to form a brown crust. 2. Remove and set aside browned shanks. Add the garlic, onion, celery, thyme leaves and bay leaves to the hot skillet. Cook over medium to high flame for 3 minutes. 3. Add shanks back to the skillet. Add beef broth and Worstershire sauce. Either place covered skillet in a preheated 300ºF oven or simmer over low fire. Cook until shanks are fork tender, about 1 ½ to 2 hours. 4. Remove shanks from skillet and set aside. Strain sauce into a separate container. Skim any oil from surface and discard. 5. Return sauce to skillet and reheat. Add chopped mint leaves, salt, pepper and sugar to taste. Reduce sauce until desired consistency is achieved. If too thick add a small amount of canned beef broth. Adjust seasoning to taste. 6. Serve with oven-roasted potatoes or couscous and asparagus. Serve sauce in a separate container as desired. Garnish plates with sprigs of fresh mint.

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April 2022 | 29


DINING OUT

THE GASTRONOMES

LANDINI’S Still Setting the Standard in Old Town

With the arrival of spring and days getting warmer, our attention is more and more intrigued with al fresco dining. With all of the restrictions brought about by COVID, the pandemic had a cause and effect for our city that city officials could not pull off for many years...more al fresco dining options. In addition to establishing a pedestrian space in the 100 block of King Street, the city and merchant groups were able to get parking spaces as dedicated dining spaces throughout Alexandria and the rush was on. This month we decided to visit what we consider the anchor restaurant of Old Town. I have been a customer of Landini’s for about 40 years and I am not the only one. While many of the regulars are no longer with us, a good number are still around. My partner has been frequenting this place since she arrived in Old Town in 1992 and it remains one of our most favorite places for many reasons. Landini’s has been the “go-to” establishment for 30

April 2022

special occasions, business lunches and dinners, birthdays and just getting together with friends. The pandemic and all of its restraints put a strain on gatherings for over a year so it is good to be back on track again. On a personal note, this restaurant is also a very effective first date destination if you want to impress… We will get to the food shortly but first I have to mention the staff and the building itself. Over the past 40 years the bar at Landini’s has been akin to any boardroom in the city. Businessmen and women choose Landini’s as the place to meet and be seen. What makes the bar so special is the caliber of the bartenders year in and year out. They are the conductors to our orchestra, and they still make the best martini in town…maybe even in the DMV! In addition, we must mention the wait staff. Some DINING OUT > PAGE 31

Old Town Crier


DINING OUT | FROM PAGE 30

of the waiters I met 40 years ago are still serving up the famous Landini Tuscan dishes. I also have to mention how the food got this good and that would be Chefs Rigoberto and Santos and their staff. A lot of reservations are made to be seated at a favorite waiters table and the kitchen staff usually knows each customer by name. For every strong ship there must be a strong captain. Franco Landini and his brother Piero launched this excursion over 40 years ago. Piero retired from the restaurant business several years ago and now Franco’s eldest son, Noe, has assumed command of the next voyage while Franco enjoys his retirement. When you enter the restaurant you will immediately notice the historic nature of the building. Built of brick and stone, this building was one of the many warehouses that lined King Street at the Historic Alexandria Wharf in the early days of America. This is one of the few restaurants in Old Town that has kept the original look. In addition to three dining rooms on the ground floor there is a second floor for dining and a wine cellar complete with bar as well as meeting rooms for small groups. It is difficult to write about everything on the menu because it is so extensive, so we will mention some of our favorites. At lunch time, both of us are partial to the Penne alla Romana. The sweet and mild Italian sausage brings this whole dish together. The pasta is perfectly cooked and the light red vodka/cream sauce begs savoring. Another easy favorite that isn’t on the menu but they always make it for me is the veal parmagiana with a side of capelinni. This dish takes me back to my younger days at Luigi’s Restaurant in D.C. when I ordered

It's a family affair — Noe and Franco Landini. it there with a bottle of Mateus or Lancers Vin Rose wine. And yes….they had dripping candles in Chianti bottles there. The first time I dined at Landini’s all those years ago I was recommended the Scaloppine di Vitello Landini and it is still my go to dish today. This is a treat for the taste buds. The milk fed scaloppine is sauteed in butter, white wine, with homemade brown sauce and mushrooms. Topped with lightly melted mozzarella cheese and served with a side of asparagus, this is one of those dishes that makes you start salivating the moment you think of it.

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DINING OUT > PAGE 33

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April 2022 | 31


LET'S GET CRAFTY

TIMOTHY LONG

The Right Proper Brewery is located in D.C.’s Shaw neighborhood. Inset photo, Lily Schultz, lead brewer.

Charity, Compassion, and The Love of Beer “God made beer because he loves us and wants us to be happy.” The above quote is often attributed to Benjamin Franklin. However, there is no proof that he ever said it. But we love believing that he did. Beer has been associated with health and happiness since ancient times. Oddly, none of the early cultures that brewed beer recorded much about the process. There are not many writings from them about their beer. Probably because, like bread, it was so much a part of everyday life that they didn’t give it much thought. They knew it made them happy. They also considered it nutritious and healthy. The health association stems from the fact that they could drink beer without becoming sick. Something one couldn’t say about water back then. It took mankind thousands of years to discover that it was the brewing process that made beer safe to drink. When brewing beer, the boiling kills any pathogens. To us, it’s just science. To them, it was magic. To this day, people will still raise a pint to someone’s health. Beer also found its way into ancient religions. One example, according to an article in Wine Enthusiast

entitled “Beer Is What Makes Us Human, How Beer Influenced Humanity Worldwide”: “To the Sumerians, beer was considered a gift from the gods meant to promote “human wellbeing and happiness,” according to a 2019 research paper, The Beverage of the Ages. Four Sumerian deities were closely associated with beer, like the goddess of beer Ninaski.” Since beer has always been associated with health, and found its way into religion, it makes sense that beer became associated with charity as well. Beer is a huge part of celebrating in our culture. Fun and happiness are associated with it. Most charity fundraising events are celebrations of some type. Beer is a great way to get people to attend. For example, I am the president of a local charity in Alexandria, VA, The Santa Claus Yacht Club (SCYC). It’s not a real yacht club, no boats. It’s comprised of a small group of local professionals who raise funds for feeding needy children and families in our community. And when we have

fundraisers, and almost always include beer. Partnering with breweries is easy. They love being part of charitable activities. It’s engrained in the culture of their industry and makes for good public relations. The SCYC’s next fundraiser is being held at a great local BBQ restaurant here in Alexandria, Sweet Fire Donna’s, on Saturday, April 9th at 4PM. We are having a Tap Takeover, an event where a brewery comes in and takes over all the taps for an afternoon. The SCYC gets $1 for ever beer sold. We also raise funds through a raffle. The Raffle prize is usually provided by the brewery, tying them into the charity and event even further. The sponsor for this Tap Takeover is Right Proper Brewery located in Washington, D.C. When they were suggested as the sponsor, I jumped on the idea. I used to live in DC not far from their Shaw location. I am a big fan of their beers. I set up a time to interview them and do a beer tasting. I had the pleasure of interviewing Lily Schulz, Lead Brewer at Right Proper’s Shaw location. To say that Lily was charming and intelligent would be an understatement. And, of course, she has a thorough knowledge of beer. Lily bubbles with that typical brewer’s personality that is best described as a combination of both the jovial and the joyful. Her love of brewing is palpable. The first beer we taste is the SHAWBECKER, a Schwarzbier, a dark malty German Lager with hints of nut and chocolate, and a clean dry finish. The next beer, their HAXAN PORTER, which anyone who read my last article would argue is a stout, was equally wonderful. And by the way, if they say it’s a porter, it’s a porter. THE SENATE LAGER was next, a delicious corn lager that is a recreation of a Chr. Heurich Brewing Company beer that was popularized back in the 1890’s. We then tasted one of Lily’s personal creations, THE CHEAP BOUQUET. It’s a sour. I’m not the biggest fan of sours, but I found it delightful. The beer’s head looks like a marshmallow, with an earthy and bitter, yet very smooth, taste. Then came a Black IPA called HOPPORTUNITY. Fig and oat hit you first, then espresso and tobacco on the back taste. It’s a fantastic beer. This beer was brewed especially for Black History Month. It’s a compassionate toast to part of our community, another charitable act. Earlier on during the interview, Lily was diligently brewing a new IPA. As she was explaining where she was in the brewing process, she began to talk about the Pink Boot Society. She excitedly explained that the IPA is for International Woman’s Day, and that many other female brewers around the country who were also part of the society were participating. The IPA is called a KVIEK IPA made with Arsett yeast. The hop blend is a comprised of four or five hops that are determined by the Pink Boot Society. GET CRAFTY > PAGE 33

TIM’S WHISKEY AND CIGAR RECOMMENDATIONS FOR APRIL: Since this month’s article dealt with charity, it is with charity and compassion in my heart that I will give you my whiskey and cigar recommendations for April. Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon is a great spring whiskey. It’s very easy on the palate. The flavors are gentle with oak and citrus on the nose. The palate detects caramel, fruit, cherries, and rye, none of which jump out quickly. The mouthfeel is light and creamy. It averages $30 per bottle and is 90 proof. So, it doesn’t hurt the mouth or the wallet. A good April cigar is the Nub Connecticut. At 4 inches and a gauge of 60, this cigar looks like you already smoked half of it before you start. It’s what I love about Nubs, small, fun, and tasty. Cedar, brioche, cinnamon, and a touch of leather make this mild to medium smoke a springtime delight.

32

April 2022

Old Town Crier


GET CRAFTY FROM PAGE 32

This guarantees some similarity in taste for all the Pink Boot Society beers brewed for International Woman’s Day. She got more excited and spoke faster. Her excitement was contagious. I had to stop her and ask her to tell me about the Pink Boot Society. I am not familiar with them. I later found their website. The best way to describe them comes from there:

We are the movers and shakers in the fermented and alcoholic beverage industry. We make fermented beverages with the highest possible quality. We are the women and/or nonbinary individuals that own the companies, package the product, design the labels, serve the drinks, write about our industry – and just about everything in between. Most importantly, we teach each other what we know through our own seminar programs, DINING OUT FROM PAGE 31

Landini Brothers hosts a variety of specials every day and the kitchen has always been very good about adapting any dish to your specific wants. My partner has always ordered something off of the specials menu and has her favorite combinations. One of them is spirulina based linguini sauteed in olive oil with crumbled sausage, toasted pine nuts, garlic, onion and asparagus. She feels very “healthy” when she eats this. The green color of the pasta kind of throws me off. On the other side of her dining curve is the veal chop or the pork chop. Both of these chops are grilled to perfection and served with two sides. If either of these is on the specials menu, treat yourself! We haven’t touched on the seafood and other specialties since there is only so much

and we help each other advance both front-of-the-house and back-of-the-house careers by raising money for educational scholarships. They are a nonprofit society of brewers who help and support others in the industry. Once again, proof of the compassion and charity that is part of the industry. Where you find beer, you often find charity, and vice versa. Craft beer doesn’t just taste good, it strengthens our community through charitable giving. When we are imbibing and enjoying, we often take this connection with charity for granted. We should take note of it. We should be thankful for the compassion that is such a big part of the industry. Clearly our brewers love us and want us to be happy. About the Author: Timothy Long is an educator, writer, consultant, and experienced restaurant operator. Email: tlong@belmarinnovations.com. Instagram and Twitter: @wvutimmy. Blog: What is that fly doing in my soup? http://whatflyinmysoup. com space for this column. Please peruse their online menu for more insight. As mentioned above, if you are a martini or Manhattan lover, this is the place for you. All of the adult beverages served in Landini’s are stellar. They offer a good mix of old and new but they haven’t gone off on the “craft cocktail” deep end…we like it like that. The wine list, as you can imagine, is extensive and there is a decent selection of bottled beers. As you can see by walking down King Street that there are a ton of restaurants to choose from and all are pretty good. If you want a taste of Old Town accompanied by some excellent Tuscan fare, give Landini Brothers a try. If you go for dinner it is always a good idea to make reservations, or you can do like we often do...have dinner at the bar with Susan, Tami or Tom. You will meet some very interesting characters.

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DINING GUIDE AMERICAN

ADA'S ON THE RIVER 3 Pioneer Mill Way 703-638-1400 AUGIE’S MUSSEL HOUSE 1106 King Street 703.721.3970 BLACKWALL HITCH 5 Cameron St. 703-739-6090 CAFE 44 44 Canal Center 571-800-6644 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 EVENING STAR CAFÉ 2000 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-549-5051 EXECUTIVE DINER & CAFE 1400 Duke Street 703-299-0894 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 HOPS 'N SHINE 3410 Mount Vernon Ave. 703-566-1509 HUMMINGBIRD 220 South Union Street 703-566-1355 JACKS PLACE 222 North Lee St. 703-684-0372 JOE THEISMANNS 1800 Diagonal Rd. 703-739-0777 JUNCTION BAKERY & BISTRO 1508 Mount Vernon Avenue Alexandria 703-436-0025 LAPORTAS 1600 Duke St. 703-683-6313 THE LIGHT HORSE 715 King Street 703-549-0533 LORI'S TABLE 1028 King Street 703-549-5545

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April 2022

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 MURPHYS IRISH PUB 713 King St. 703-548-1717 murphyspub.com NORTHSIDE 1O 10 East Glebe Rd. 703-888-0032 OAK STEAKHOUSE 901 N. St. Asaph St. 703-840-3395 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 SHOOTER MCGEES 5239 Duke St. 703-751-9266 SLATERS MARKET 1552 Potomac Greens Dr. 703-548-3807 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

Please Contact your favorite restaurants for updates on their "Social Distancing" policies. T.J. STONES GRILL HOUSE & TAP ROOM 608 Montgomery St. 703-548-1004 tjstones.com TOASTIQUE GOURMET TOAST & JUICE BAR 1605 King Street 571-312-1909 UNION STREET PUBLIC HOUSE 121 South Union St. 703-548-1785 unionstreetpublichouse.com 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

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GRAB ABITE, TONIGHT! Old Town Crier


GRAPEVINE

MATT FITZSIMMONS

And the Winner is ... Cana Vineyards 2019 Unité Reserve On March 24th, Governor Glenn Youngkin announced Cana Vineyards & Winery as the winner of the 2022 Virginia Governor’s Cup for its 2019 Unité Reserve, a Petit Verdot-heavy red blend. Winemaker Melanie Natoli accepted the Cup at a packed gala, held at Richmond’s Main Street Station. This year’s Governor’s Cup was the first time the Gala was open to the public. Melanie made history as the first time a woman has ever received the Governor’s Cup. The competition also set a record with three women winemakers – Melanie, Maggie Malick of Maggie Malick Wine Caves, and Rachel Stinson Vrooman of Stinson Vineyards – behind four of the competition’s 12 top-scoring wines, which will form the Governor’s Case. The remaining Case wines, representing Charlottesville, Northern Virginia, and the Shenandoah Valley, were also revealed. Albemarle Ciderworks won Best in Show for its 2019 Virginia Hewes Crab cider. 127 gold medal winners were announced earlier in the month. The Governor’s Cup is Virginia’s premiere wine competition, featuring wines that are entirely grown and made in the state. Competition Director and Master of Wine Jay Youmans changed the format and strengthened judging standards in 2012, turning the Cup into a world-class competition. Cases of these top-scoring wines are sent to wine critics around the world, promoting the Virginia wine industry to a national and international audience. Competition judge and wine writer Frank Morgan said of this year’s competition, “In the ten years I've served as a judge for the Virginia Governor's Cup, the quality of wines was higher across the range of varieties. I was especially impressed with the Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Petit Verdot and especially the red Bordeaux-style red blends." Annette Boyd, Director of the Virginia Wine Marketing Office, also noted how this year’s scores were buoyed by Virginia’s overall improving quality as well as a pair of especially strong vintages. The majority of wines came from 2017 and 2019, harvests winemaker Luca Paschina of Barboursville Vineyards called “Excellent to Outstanding” due to fruit that was almost universally praised as ripe and well balanced. This year’s scores back up their observations. On a 100 point scale, those scoring 85-89 points earn silver and 90 or more are awarded gold. The strength of this year’s Cup submissions were such that all but a handful won at least silver.

Melanie Natoli of Cana Vineyards & Winery is the first woman to have received the prestigous Governor’s Cup.

Also taking home prizes at this year’s competition were Loudoun County’s Maggie Malick of Maggie Malick Wine Caves (left) and Rachel Stinson Vrooman of Stinson Vineyards in Albemarle County.

Virginia Wine Looking Beyond Bordeaux Virginia’s best-known wines are dominated by French grapes, and this year’s Governor’s Case continues the trend. Bordeaux-heavy red blends made up over half the roster, alongside a Chardonnay and Chardonnay-based sparkling. Rounding out the Case is a dessert wine, Vermentino, and the Case’s first Albariño. Old Town Crier

Yet Virginia is still a young wine region, experimenting with new varieties to find those that work best in our terroir. A number of these gold medal winners showcase how Virginia’s exploration of new grapes and styles of winemaking made this year’s gold medal wines its most diverse set ever, taking cues from both California and Europe but

forging a style that is distinctly Virginia. Judges awarded the Cup’s first gold to a Tempranillo (Spain) from Maggie Malick Wine Caves and the first gold in over a decade to a Syrah (southern France) from Beliveau Farm Winery. GRAPEVINE > PAGE 37

April 2022 | 35


EXPLORING VA WINES

DOUG FABBIOLI

COOPERAGE It’s Space and Spice

W

hen I worked in the wine cellars of Sonoma, California a few decades ago, much of my time was spent with the barrels. I was purchasing over 2000 barrels each year, both new and used, for our wines at Buena Vista Winery. I got to know the coopers, the other winemakers, and the wines they aged in those barrels. I learned about the oaks used, the toasting and charring, and more. I don’t buy nearly as many barrels these days but that experience has not left me. With the expansion of the craft beverage industry, many folks have reached out to me about getting some used barrels for their projects which means there are a handful of uses other than wine

that I have had a hand in lately. There are a number of good reasons to re-use wine barrels for other spirits. The barrel will impart the flavor of what was in it before, especially if I do not wash out the barrel. This is the preferred method for these folks, as the wine characteristics left in the barrel are what they are looking for. The wood of the barrel will add its own set of flavor notes, and these can be different based on where the barrel wood was grown, the aging of the wood before being made into a barrel, the toasting process used and the level of that toast, and how many times the barrel has been used. Another aspect of barrel-aging a product is the slow, low-level oxygen that is imparted into the wine through the pores of the wood. The barrel does not leak, but it does breathe. As the barrels sit, the

air slowly goes in and a touch of wine evaporates out giving the barrel room a unique and pleasant smell. The used barrels from our Raspberry Merlot are always in high demand. A few of our neighboring brewers have used them for aging sours, as the acidity and strong fruit character from the raspberries can easily complement this style of beer. Our local distillery has requested them for their program too—I believe he mentioned aging some rum in them. A local coffee roaster has asked for barrels from me this year. Aging raw coffee beans in a wine barrel was a new idea for me, although I certainly enjoy a good cup of coffee in the morning and appreciate EXPLORING VA WINES > PAGE 37

Oak barrel usage is a wine making tradition carried on by both home and commercial winemakers. The use of barrels lends quality with a touch of class to any wine cellar. Oak aging imparts flavor and aroma that can not be duplicated by other containers, as well as affecting the color, tannin profile, and texture of the wine. 36

April 2022

Old Town Crier


The 2022 Governor’s Case CANA VINEYARDS & WINERY 2019 Unité Reserve 50 WEST VINEYARDS 2019 Ashby Gap BARBOURSVILLE VINEYARDS 2020 Vermentino Reserve CANA VINEYARDS & WINERY 2019 LeMariage MAGGIE MALICK WINE CAVES 2020 Albariño MICHAEL SHAPS WINEWORKS 2019 Chardonnay POLLAK VINEYARDS 2017 Meritage ROCKBRIDGE VINEYARD 2018 V d'Or GRAPEVINE FROM PAGE 35

SHENANDOAH VINEYARDS 2019 Reserve

Albariño (Spain) and Nebbiolo (Italy) were well represented despite relatively small plantings in the state. Petit Manseng and Petit Verdot, lesser-known French varieties winegrowers praise for their suitability in Virginia’s climate, also made strong showings. Dry and off-dry wines made with hybrid grapes (a crossing of American and Mediterranean vines) also had their bestever showing. Beliveau Farm also won for its 2017 Soul Singer Chambourcin, and both Grace Estate Winery and Old House Vineyards were recognized for their Vidals. While hybrids have traditionally lacked mass market appeal, climate change is forcing vineyards to reevaluate what they should plant and these under-appreciated varieties are amongst those leading the way. This diversity isn’t limited to grapes; sparkling wine, cider, and mead all set new medal records in the Cup. Six sparklings took gold. The nationwide popularity of sparkling wines has seen local bubbly sales surge, with a number of Virginia wineries now offering everything from casual pétnats to serious méthode champenoise-style wines. Ciders and meads were also well represented, earning 23 gold medals between them. These beverages reflect the changing demographics in Virginia’s beverage market as new drinkers shift to lighter offerings. Nearly 1/3rd of new ‘wineries’ in Virginia are actually cideries or meaderies. The Cup’s ciders were reviewed by a separate set of judges. Many of this year’s gold medal winners are still available at their respective wineries. Wine lovers can download the 2022 Virginia Governor's Cup® Gold Medal Wine Trail app at Virginiawine.Org. The App allows users to plan their trips around wineries that earned gold at the Governor’s Cup, enter raffles for prizes, and view discounts.

STINSON VINEYARDS 2017 Meritage TRUMP WINERY 2015 Brut Reserve WISDOM OAK WINERY 2019 Nineteen

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EXPLORING VA WINES FROM PAGE 36

the craftsmanship involved in producing a quality product. We talked through the procedure and the goals they were hoping to achieve, and tasted a number of brews that express the different styles that define those goals. Toast levels, tannin structures, aging, acids, lingering finishes, creamy textures… it’s almost like making wine! I have another barrel project that’s going in the other direction. A new restaurant in town is working with me to create a custom wine blend for their opening. They had a bourbon custom-made for them previously, which was aged in a classic bourbon barrel. We put their custom wine into this bourbon barrel to finish. Over the years, one method I have used to create consistency in our wines is defining what barrels will be used with which wine and for how long. These other crafters are now trying new things, playing off of my craft to create something new. Artistry at its finest! Is there anything more old-world than aging in barrels? Yes, barrels are expensive and the barrel aging takes time to show results, but the barrel itself goes back centuries without a whole lot of change to the basic structure. With all the new technology in the world these days, it is very grounding to work with products and styles that have been long proven and improved throughout our civilization. And it is exciting to see the new ideas and products being made using that age-old knowledge. New stuff based on old stuff! Old Town Crier

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April 2022

SPRING IS IN THE AIR

A

pril is one of my favorite months because the weather is making a turn for the better (my birthday is in April too!) and if you like the warmer weather, chances are you will be spending much more time outside, which means less time at the health club; but don’t let your fitness routine melt away like the winter snow! If you are a weekend warrior who loves to compete in various sports throughout the year, or just an “Ordinary Joe” who’s looking for something new, you should consider adding plyometrics to your exercise program. Plyometrics is a form of jump training that has been proven to increase the muscle’s ability to produce power. Why is this important? An increase in power results in an increase in speed, strength, or a combo of the two, which means you will have an advantage over your competition and be lighter on your feet. Another benefit of plyometric training is it can be performed outside with minimal equipment needed. There are a few things to remember before even trying plyometric exercises age, strength, body weight, previous injuries and training experience. Because of the intense nature of plyometrics, the National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA) recommends a lower-body strength prerequisite before starting any jump training. A person must be strong enough to free-weight squat at least 1.5 times their own body weight. For example, a 180 lb person must be able to squat a minimum of 270 lbs! Don’t worry; you will need about six months of progressive resistance training to reach this strength guideline. The minimum age requirement depends on the physical and mental maturity level of the adolescent. Please check with your family physician to help determine if your child is physically ready to start with basic plyometric training. The maximum age relies heavily on current health conditions such as obesity,

arthritis, or past joint surgeries. Several studies have shown that low-level plyometrics can help increase bone density in older participants. The NSCA recommends those who weigh more than 220 lbs should not depth jump from a height higher than 18 inches. Depth jumps are one of the most advanced techniques in which a person stands on a higher surface, steps off, lands on a lower surface and jumps as high as possible. This should only be performed after a solid strength base and previous training experience has been established. Besides having a solid strength base, you must also have great technique, especially upon landing from a jump. Most injuries happen during the landing and rarely on the take off. Landing mechanics need to focus on proper foot placement and flexion of the hips, knees and ankles. Foot placement should be shoulder-width apart with hips flexed about 130 degrees, knees flexed to 110 degrees, and ankles flexed about 75 degrees. I always teach my clients to “land softly” as to absorb the impact by pushing the hips back and flexing the knees, similar to sitting in a chair. Your torso should be leaned slightly forward at the waist with good posture in the low back. Avoid slamming your feet down on the landing surface. A correct landing should be as quiet as a mouse. These are just a few things to consider before trying any jump training. I will list and explain the physiology, program design, and some basic plyometric drills in the next month’s issue of the Old Town Crier…….stay tuned! About the Author: Unverzagt holds a 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. Old Town Crier


FITNESS

NICOLE FLANAGAN

Saving Your Workout for Daylight If you ever make it to the gym before the sun comes up you will notice that there are just as many, if not more, people working out at 5am as there are at 5pm. For some people, working out in the morning is like having a cup of coffee, for others the thought of getting out of bed any earlier than sun-up, well, isn’t a thought at all. For others it is simply timing and lifestyle fit that designate a workout time. I have wondered if there really is a better time to work out, as I have always thought that morning workouts were the best. For me getting up and getting my workout done early means that I have the rest of the day and don’t have the workout hanging in the back of my mind. Not like chasing a toddler is a sedentary job but sometimes come the end of the day I am just too exhausted to go for a run. I choose to work out early in the morning because it is convenient, I have the time to myself and it gives me a little bit of peace in my mind before everyone else in my house gets up. I did a little bit of research on the best time to work out and what I found was interesting. Dr. Phyllis Zee of Northwestern University has a different opinion about when the ideal time to exercise is. She claims that the best time to work out is in the late afternoon. The reason for that is your muscle strength is at its peak. She also states that someone would be less likely to have an injury because it’s also a time when people are most awake and alert. The science behind Zee’s idea has to do with the delicate rhythms of the brain called circadian rhythms. According to Zee, circadian rhythms explain why working out later in the day might be more productive and beneficial. One of the things that circadian rhythms do is to determine when your best performance time is - your ability to perform changes throughout 24 hours. Circadian rhythms operate like an internal clock in the body. Neuron signals are fired out by the hypothalamus [a region of the brain], controlling sleep patterns, blood pressure, even our moods. Circadian rhythms also control body temperature, a key element of a more productive workout. According to Zee, by the afternoon, body temperature is Old Town Crier

between one and two degrees warmer than in the morning, making muscles in the body more supple, and lowering the risk of injury. While I do not disagree with what this Dr. has to say I also read that a person can actually train their circadian rhythms to work the way that best suits their lifestyle. There is some evidence that people who consistently wake up early and head to the gym can actually train their bodies to be more prepared for exercise earlier in the day. The ability to adjust your rhythms is important for athletes training for a specific event. The idea is to train at the same time of day that the event will occur. Studies show that your ability to maintain exercise intensity will adapt to your training time. Therefore, if you do your marathon training in the morning, you may perform better on race day (marathons typically start in the morning). But if you train in the evening, a morning race day may leave you feeling weaker and slower. There is also individual ability; some people are just naturally morning people. They have no trouble exercising first thing in the morning. Others don’t get moving so quickly and are more likely to feel like exercising later in the day. If you have such an obvious preference it’s pretty easy to decide what sort of exercise schedule you might stick with. The interesting thing is that research shows that no matter when you think you are better able to exercise, almost all of us are, in fact, physically stronger and have more endurance in the late afternoon. Whether research proves which time is better there is still the fact that some athletes only have a certain amount of time to get things done during the day. Many of us are balancing work and family and everything in between and there is just no time later in the day. While exercise in the afternoon may be more beneficial from a physiological standpoint, I can say from my own experience that morning exercisers are more likely to stick to their workout than afternoon exercisers. The good news is that you get to decide the best time for you to exercise based upon your personal goals, schedule and lifestyle. Ideally, you will pick a

time that you are able to stick with consistently and make part of your daily or weekly schedule. When it comes to a good exercise routine, consistency is the key to being successful no matter what your goals may be.

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April 2022 | 39


FIRST BLUSH

KIM PUTENS

FRAGRANCE: What to Wear and How to Wear It The smell of spring is in the air. With the smell of spring brings about the desire to try a new fragrance. Switching to a new fragrance in the warmer months is like shedding our heavy winter clothes. I’ve even heard of fragrance referred to as woman’s clothing. And, the type of fragrance notes chosen are referred to anything from a spring dress to a fur coat. Since we are all ready to put our fur coats away after this historic winter, allow me to guide you toward your “spring dress” and teach you how best to wear it.

What to Wear Warmer months call for lighter fragrance notes – floral, citrus, and clean are most common. Floral is by far the most popular fragrance category. It becomes even more popular when the temperatures rise. Consider floral notes such as gardenia, orange blossom, lily, rose and peony. These are most often found in fragrances. In fact, Casablanca lily is the most popular fragrance note 40

April 2022

sought out by customers. Citrus Notes – Orange is too fruity, grapefruit too ordinary. But, bergamot, bitter orange, and mandarin are just right. For a greener smell, look for fragrances that pair citrus notes with green leafy notes. Some examples of common combinations are verbena, lemon and cedar or lemon, basil and oak. Because citrus notes tend to evaporate quickly, pairing them with woody notes will make them last longer. Ozonic (or clean) Notes – When sniffed, these fragrances are reminiscent of the seashore or fresh water. Most often people will refer to them as clean and fresh. The scent will remind them of a breeze coming off the ocean or the way we expect a summer breeze to smell. When mixed with floral notes, these ozonic fragrances gain more depth, last longer and are unique.

How to Wear It Believe it or not, there are many ways to apply a fragrance to ensure maximum impact for the occasion or event in which you are wearing it. For day, the objective is to smell good and leave behind in your path a waif of your scent. It’s not meant to overpower those around you, but make you feel elegant and sophisticated. The movement of our body throughout the day makes a fragrance rise which makes it important to apply it low on the body. Behind the knees, on the wrists and even applied to your skirt or pants will ensure the fragrance rises and lingers as you move throughout the day. Night brings out a different objective for fragrance. Sensuality is usually associated with applying a fragrance at night. To create the allure of fragrance at night, proper placement is of utmost importance. Target areas of sensuality such as behind the ears, around the

neck, and on the hair. There is also the decadent way of applying fragrance. We all need a little decadence every once in a while. Keep in mind, unless you want to replace your perfume bottles often, apply your fragrance with decadence on rare occasions. The decadent approach is to spritz an area in front of your body and walk through it. This approach allows the fragrance to settle lightly on the skin and clothing. In order to be effective, you must spritz a fair amount of fragrance before you walk through it. Finally, some general rules about applying fragrance. Hold the fragrance bottle a minimum of 5-7 inches away from the body and mist it over you. Spray each area only once. If the body or clothing is “wet” after spraying, then you’ve held it too close. Enjoy the art of choosing a new spring fragrance and applying it with decadence! Old Town Crier


STEVE CHACONAS

GO FISH

Catching Technology In early competitive bass fishing, the playing field was level. Fishing gear, lures and boats were evolving. Tournament destinations were undisclosed until arrival. Tackle boxes were limited by weight, and horsepower was restricted, lifted in the late 90s. The early 150 hp standard went to 175, to 200, to 225 and has mostly settled on a Goldilocks 250 hp. Boats can only be so big and remain good fishing platforms. Hooks got sharper, lines stronger and lures more lifelike. Rods are so sensitive you can feel the price tag with them. Reels cast a mile and retrieve at lightning speeds. Trolling motors put boats on a spot and keep them there. In shallow waters, Power Poles deploy anchors to keep boats perfectly still to target shallow bass. Electronics evolved as well. Simple flasher units were effective, sending sonar beams to be interpreted by anglers. Bottom hardness, vegetation, trees, rocks, or mud could be discerned by color brightness. Humminbird’s early liquid crystal diode screens advancements interpreted sonar signals into more easily read 2-dimensional images. Then came GPS and contour maps. The big 3, Humminbird, Lowrance and Garmin fought over the bass fishing market. Humminbird’s side imaging set the bar, followed by 360 degree sonar. Recently, Garmin achieved dominance in forward

scanning units. Seeing fish swimming around caught the eye of tournament anglers who rose to the top with their mastery of this technology. Pros and weekend anglers found the huge advantage of locating and targeting previously unnoticed bass. These unpressured fish could be identified and hunted down, identified by size, and followed until caught. This game-changing technology is also changing angler attitudes. There’s skill in catching fish, but also in maximizing the effectiveness of these units. Fishing is morphing from Opie and his dad Sheriff Taylor walking down the dirt road to skip a stone and wet a line to video gaming. The adventure was part of the journey. Is the electronic revolution taking away something from the heritage? Many think the fishing “game” is becoming a forgone conclusion. It’s no longer fishing, it’s catching. It’s not enough to figure out the fish at that moment, it’s deciding which fish to catch. No secret baits or new techniques being used to fool fish, it’s now software and processing that lands the lunker. What used to be anyone’s sport, has truly become a younger generation’s video game. Technologically challenged older anglers feel they’re up a stream without a keyboard. Small flashers of days gone by have been replaced with 4 or 5, 14-inch

mini televisions. Waypoints take anglers to exact locations to reel in the biggest fish in the biggest ponds. Tournament circuit sponsors are firmly planted and invested in every trail down to local clubs. Electronic units, costing thousands and even tens of thousands, are adorning decks across the country and around the world. These advancements force anglers to dig into their pockets to keep up with their competition. While forward-looking sonar adds immense value to the overall fishing experience, the impact on fish populations has been evaluated by the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks. So far, data collected demonstrates forward scanning may improve angler catch and size by casual weekend anglers, but overall differences were statistically minimal, suggesting an overall low risk of long-term damage to fish populations. Anglers with more experience and expertise in this technology were not considered in this

study. While familiar with the recent uptick in the use of LiveScope, Virginia DWR biologist John Odenkirk isn’t looking for the specific impact of the newest fishing tool. Rather he continues to rely on statistical analysis of electrofishing and creel surveys to make fisheries management decisions based on population metrics. “Most of the region’s largemouth bass fisheries, like Lake Anna and the Potomac River, are showing strong

populations and recruitment. Any decisions on restricting possession limits will continue to be based on analysis of these population metrics from individual resources”. As for the electronics direct impact, Odenkirk says, “Data do not exist on the impact on largemouth bass, as the majority are released and even with delayed mortality factored in, there’s currently no need to take any action.” Rather than taking in the scenery, modern anglers seek satellites and megabits to get their bites. Is catching more fish and bigger fish at the push of a button America’s new pastime? Or have we become so conditioned for instant gratification that it’s become programmed into our tackle boxes. New technology baits newcomers into the sport by opening a can of worms. Author Capt. Steve Chaconas is Potomac River bass fishing guide. Potomac fishing reports: nationalbass.com. Book trips/ purchase gift certificates: info@ NationalBass.com.

John CrouCh

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Potomac River Bassing in April Water is into the 50s and fish are in shallow areas ready to spawn. Likely this is the best month of the year to fish on the Potomac. The best search bait is a lipless crankbait. Red is the best color in stained water. Tie to 12 pound test Gamma Edge fluorocarbon line. When contacting grass, give the line a snap to free the bait and prepare for a hit. Other colors are chrome or chartreuse patterns when water is a bit clearer. Carolina rigs are also a good way to cover water. Leaders of about 2 feet with a ¾ ounce egg sinker using 30 pound Gamma Torque braid for man line and 12 pound test Edge as leader, tied to a soft plastic, lizards or creature baits work will in green pumpkin patterns. Time for jigs, casting and swimming through emerging grass. When pitching, aim for clumps of grass and when swimming, snap the bait from grass and allow it to fall. In water that is clearer, try clown colored suspending jerkbaits. Vary the amount of snaps and length of pauses. Use 10 pound test Edge and target cast to grass clumps or cover water. The smaller baits work when the water is clearest and shallow. Use the larger versions when the water is stained or higher.

Old Town Crier

215 King St. Alexandria, VA 22314 sales@johncrouch.comcastbiz.net (703) 548-2900 | (703) 739-2302 April 2022 | 41


OPEN SPACE

LORI WELCH BROWN

What Goes with Grief? Hope and a Cold Miller Lite I’m writing this column on the tenth anniversary of her death which seems appropriate as April showers bring May flowers. That’s a bit what grief feels like, right? Things feels gloomy and dark for a time, and then a bit of sunlight peaks through just enough to allow something beautiful to break through the soil, a sprout of hope. She died in March, on the 16th to be exact, just one day after her youngest daughter’s tenth birthday. Since 2012, the term March Madness has taken on a whole different meaning for those of us who knew Holly. Holly loved March. She was actually born in January, but somehow March feels like her month. She was a St. Patty’s day girl with her fiery red hair and vibrant personality. She never met a stranger, and she had more ideas than there are four-leaf clovers. This year’s anniversary of her passing felt like a kick in the gut. She should be here. Her youngest just got accepted to VCU. Her oldest—who is the spitting image of her—is set to graduate in May. I could go on and on about what a life force she was—one of my best friends since I was 15—but you didn’t know her. I could ramble on for hours about what you missed out on, and it would all be true. Her laugh and penchant for Miller Lites. Her zany ideas and master plans that she sucked us all into because we couldn’t stand to be left out of anything she was involved in. One such idea had me standing in the freezing rain at a St. Patrick’s Day parade in D.C. trying to sell green glitter shamrock head bopper thingys. “C’mon, Lor—it’ll be fun,” she said. She had purchased 5,000 of them for about a nickel each, and the plan was to sell them for $5 a pop. In theory, it was a great idea. We sold four before the police shut us down for not having a sales license or basically following any of DC’s guidelines. “Who knew?,” she said as she walked over to the payphone to call her Dad to come pick us up. Minus the price of lunch and the gloves I had to buy from the guy around the corner who presumably had a license, I was only out $26—practically a paycheck for me at the time. While her grand plans usually lacked a few key elements, you were always guaranteed an adventure and a story to last a lifetime. For every story like that, there are fifty more. Holly passed without warning just two months after she was diagnosed with Stage II breast cancer. None of us thought she was going to die. We thought she’d get a chemo drip, say goodbye to her gorgeous hair for a while, maybe have to undergo a mastectomy. We’d set up a meal delivery system, tell her she knew how to rock ‘bald,’ and then we’d don some pink shirts and walk together every year to honor her as a survivor. But that wasn’t how her story played out. Instead, I was awakened at 5:00 am by another friend, “Holly just passed.” “Passed what?” I asked. I was in shock and continued to be in shock as we gathered to say goodbye. The only thing that saved me was being surrounded by everyone else like me who knew Holly, loved Holly, and was in a suspended state of disbelief. Like little robot zombies, we moved painfully and awkwardly around each other, pushing casserole dishes across the counter, ordering flowers, writing eulogies, and trying our best to keep it together which was an impossibility. We spoke without making sense and without meaning, nodding our heads at each other’s statements knowing full well nothing was penetrating our grief. We got through hours and days as best we could without her voice, her laugh, her presence. You have a Holly in your life—not our Holly, but someone like Holly whose life, love, and laughter you may be taking for granted. Someone you love and adore might not have as many tomorrows as you. For your sake, I hope I’m wrong. Really I do because it’s painful and makes your heart hurt for days, weeks, years, and now a decade. When we reach a certain stage of life, it seems like there are as many anniversaries of passings as there are birthdays to celebrate, but we can’t lose sight of the hope and the newness and the births. Praise God (or your higher power or whomever) for the new sprouts popping up and out into the world. Everything from the daffodils to the tulips to the litter of puppies to the baby showers is a reminder that on our darkest days, life continues to offer up beauty, joy, and a big serving of hope. It is there, and will be there for us when we’re ready to receive it. At least that’s what I’m telling myself. Mostly, it’s working, but I still can’t shake the feeling that Holly should be here. Maybe that’s what I’m struggling with. Maybe she is here. Maybe she’s been trying to tell me to lighten up, pop open a cold Miller Lite, and make a memory because that’s what she would do. “C’mon, Lor,” she’d say. “It’s beautiful outside. We should have a yard sale and sell all those head boppers collecting dust in the garage. We’ll make a fortune! They’re antiques now!” Cheers to April showers, and may we all look forward to some beautiful May flowers soon.

When we reach a certain stage of life, it seems like there are as many anniversaries of passings as there are birthdays to celebrate, but we can’t lose sight of the hope and the newness and the births.

About the Author: Lori is a local writer, painter and pet lover who loves to share her experiences and expertise with our readers. She has been penning a column for the OTC for over 20 years. Please follow Lori online on Medium for more missives like this.

42

April 2022

Old Town Crier


ROAD TRIP FROM PAGE 23

It was getting dark out so we headed back to the Plaza for a last drink at the Pub. We got lucky that night. Although already half way through his show, we got to spend the last two sets with local Rehoboth musician Keith Mack. Keith has been a session musician for some of rocks best performers and he has a few CD’s of his own. He was fantastic to not only listen to but to converse with as well. It was a perfect ending to a long day. Since the weather the next day - St. Patrick’s Day was windy, cold and cloudy with light rain all day... it was a perfect day to lounge around the room all morning listening to the waves while we psyched up for our visit to the Starboard Restaurant in Dewey Beach to celebrate our Irish friends. This local Dewey Beach bar is a legend right along with the Bottle & Cork and the Rusty Rudder – neither of which were open. Despite it being 3 pm on St. Patrick’s Day, we were lucky enough to find two bar stools at one of the four or five bars (was hard to tell since they had the parking lot tented over) set up for the weekend. It felt like a reunion of the hay days of Dewey Beach in the mid-seventies. There may have been a few 20-somethings there but at 75 years old, I felt right at home. Gillian our bartender was amazing and it was a good time. It was way too crowded to order food so we retreated to the aforementioned original Nalu for eats. If you stop in, we hope Jimmy Young is behind the bar – he is a real treat. On this special day he had his hair tinted green and spiked and his eyebrows tinted orange…. We made it back to the bar at the Plaza in time to

Gillian at Starboard

Jimmy Young of Nalu in Dewey & Me

use our two complimentary drink cards and retreat to the dining room for a light dinner. I forgot to mention that the Plaza is beautifully decorated in a Victorian theme. Victoria’s Restaurant is the same. Classy and comfortable. Treat yourself to the cream of crab soup and the Bang Bang shrimp when you go. The next morning we reluctantly checked out. Lani wanted to stop at this cool shop that sold all sorts of Bloody Mary supplies. Devil Dave’s Bloody Mary Shop – A Unique Store for the Enthusiast! The anchor product for the store is Devil Dave’s Bloody Mary seasoning. It isn’t a bottle of mix. It is a combination of dehydrated horse radish, Worcestershire sauce and secret spices sold in

Devil Dave’s Bloody Mary Mix

individual packets. Check them out at DevilDaves. com for the whole story. Since the “Devil” is in the same block as the famous Summer House I decided to wait there and have a Bloody Mary and some lunch. The Summer House is another favorite Northern Virginian/ Washingtonian destination. The stories this place could tell. Take a Road Trip to Rehoboth Beach and the Boardwalk Plaza hotel. Spend some time in Dewey as well. We didn’t cover 1/16th of the fun that is available in this area in this column so we urge you to pack your bags, hop in the car and start making your own memories and stories to tell.

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Old Town Crier

April 2022 | 43


NATIONAL HARBOR

LANI GERING

Architizer.com

Who Says You Can’t Go Home?

A

Bob with GM John Edwards

s many of you regular readers of this column know, I had to move out of the condo that I occupied in One National Harbor for over 11 years almost 2 years ago due to the monetary strains caused by the pandemic. It was one of the saddest days of my life. I know it may sound ridiculous to some of you but I truly did love living in the Harbor. I had my routine and liked to go on a walk about to check out new businesses and see what other action was up at my favorite places. I vowed to make it the 4 whole miles back across the bridge from Old Town on a regular basis and I did for the first year, however, it has been less frequent – other than doing the monthly distribution – in these last 9 months. I was struggling with what to write about since about the only notable happening in the Harbor in April is the continuing Cherry Blossom activities that I wrote about in the March column and the springtime and Easter happenings at the Gaylord. So….I decided to take the drive across the Woody Bridge with Bob in tow to spend the afternoon in the Harbor. Wouldn’t you know that the day we picked ended up with the wind blowing a gale and rain 44

April 2022

Smoked Salmon Starter pelting down so the walk about didn’t happen. Not to be discouraged, we went ahead and parked the truck in the Fleet Street garage and made the trek through the elements to my all time favorite place in the Harbor – Bond 45. Bond was like my “Cheers” bar when I lived there. I could walk out one of the many ‘secret’ exits from the ONH building and across the street right to the front door. It was veryyyyy convenient. I made many friends there over the years with both locals and visitors alike with whom I have maintained contact. I was hoping to run into some familiar faces from my old building on this trip but the stars didn’t align, but our pal Nancy joined us later in the afternoon and some of my very favorite people were working on this Saturday. Oscar, former waiter at Landini Brothers here in Old Town; Sam, who also works at RT’s in Del Ray and one of the absolute best GM’s in the hospitality business, John Edwards, was on the floor. John has a way of making us feel like celebrities when we see him. And it isn’t just us, I can’t express how welcoming he is to everyone. That is one of the things that makes Bond 45 a special place. Like so many dining establishments, several

changes had to be made to adhere to the pandemic restrictions including a total revamp of the menu. Unlike the original extensive version, John and his team have whittled it down to one page that has offerings for every palate and in all price ranges. This revamp has not, however, made the drinking and dining here any less special. We like to sit at the bar so we can talk with the bartenders and others who belly up. Always some fun conversations and definitely good cocktails. We met Hannah – the new kid on the block – on this trip and it looks like she’s going to be nice addition to the bar staff. Bob finally decided to sample some Whistle Pig Rye – he has been eyeing it since the first time we saw the bottle a few years ago. I went with a plain old vodka with soda and lime. Usually a martini drinker when I’m here I decided it was a little too early for one. The drinks at Bond are substantial – on par with the famous cocktails served at the aforementioned Landini’s. Food portions are also substantial and we usually opt to share. The smoked salmon app that we had was plenty for two people. John told me that there are big things on the horizon for Bond but he wasn’t at liberty to disclose said “things” at the time of our visit. I’m excited to see what they have in store for us so I can share it with you next month. And…I have to say that for the few hours we were there it did feel like I was home.

Hannah & the Whistle Pig

Meet the Bunny Easter Bunny Meet & Greet at the Gaylord - April 17th While you might not spot him as he’s hiding his eggs, the lovable Easter Bunny takes a break from preparing his famous egg hunt to take photos with guests on Easter Sunday. For more information check out Gaylordnational.com or call 301-965-4000.

Old Town Crier


TOUR. TASTE. SHOP.

Distillery Tours are back in Sperryville! Visit our website for reservation details. No time for a tour? Come relax in our riverside cocktail garden for whisky flights and craft cocktails after a day of activities. Light snacks are available or pack a picnic. All ages and well-behaved dogs are welcome.

www.copperfoxdistillery.com

9 River Lane in Sperryville 540.987.8554


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Articles inside

National Harbor

4min
pages 46-48

From the Trainer

3min
page 40

First Blush

3min
page 42

Go Fish

5min
page 43

Exploring VA Wines

6min
pages 38-39

Grapevine

3min
page 37

Let's Get Crafty

8min
pages 34-35

Dining Guide

4min
page 36

Dining Out

4min
pages 32-33

From the Bay

4min
pages 26-27

Let's Eat

3min
pages 30-31

Road Trip

6min
pages 24-25

To the Blue Ridge

6min
pages 28-29

Caribbean Connection

4min
pages 22-23

Pets of the Month

2min
page 21

Points on Pets

3min
page 20

Gallery Beat

2min
page 16

Take Photos, Leave Footprints

5min
pages 18-19

Urban Garden

3min
page 12

A Bit of History

8min
pages 10-11

Personality Profile

10min
pages 6-7

The Last Word

7min
pages 14-15

Business Profile

2min
page 8

Financial Focus

3min
page 9
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