FiND iT FREDERiCK - Winter 2022

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OVER THE EDGE: EXPLORING THE BRANDYWINE RIVER VALLEY PLEASE NOTE: As our community works together to get through the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the events listed in this publication will be rescheduled or canceled, and some of the shops and restaurants listed within may be closed or temporarily offering different services. Please check the specific events’ and shops’ websites or call them for updates.

As we work to stay warm and healthy this winter in Frederick, we’re fortunate to have an abundance of at least one very important thing – awesome pizza! Wood-fired, New York style, even Pittsburgh style… when it comes to cheesy slices, we’ve got it all. There are so many great pizza joints in and around Frederick, in fact, that we couldn’t possibly write about all of them in one article. Take a peek at our picks for some of the best pizza pies you can enjoy in Frederick County, and feel free to let us know who we missed this time around! Another thing we’re lucky to have an abundance of in Frederick? Amazing local theatre. The last two years have been especially hard on the theatre community in Frederick, but we’re happy to say it is still going strong. Read all about all the innovative ways that Frederick regional theatre groups have “kept the ghost light on” through the pandemic. Spend some time reading through this issue and checking out who and what we’ve found to feature. And drop us a line if you have a suggestion for us to feature in a future issue in 2022!

Molly Fellin Spence, Executive Editor

ON THE COVER: Photo courtesy of Magpie Pizza Company


9th Annual Bridal Extravaganza “Happily Ever After” Saturday, March 5th

Bring your Fiancé, friends or family join us at The Lodges at GeƩysburg for the Happily Ever AŌer Bridal Show, from Noon - 3pm. We will be featuring over 35 great vendors and showcasing the possibiliƟes for your once in a lifeƟme event. Door Prizes, cash prizes*, food and fun acƟviƟes. Visit our website or Facebook page to register!

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WINTER 2022 . Volume 15 . Issue 3

Donna Elbert

PULSE PUBLISHING, LLC 12 S. MARKET STREET, SUITE 101 F R E D E R I C K , M A RY L A N D 2 1 7 0 1 O 301.662.6050 d 301.662.5102 wPULSEPUBLISHING.NET published by

EXECUTIVE EDITOR Molly Fellin Spence

GRAPHIC DESIGNER Ana Lazo Eastep FiND iT Frederick is a free quarterly publication of Pulse Publishing, LLC. Customer inquiries should be directed to Pulse Publishing, LLC, 12 S. Market Street, Suite 101, Frederick, MD 21701. All contents of this publication are protected by copyright and may not be reproduced in whole or in part for any reason without prior consent of the publisher. For information about advertising in an upcoming issue of FiND iT Frederick, please contact Donna Elbert at 301-662-6050, ext. 11, email or visit If you have questions or comments regarding FiND iT Frederick, you may contact the editor, Molly Fellin Spence at



Many thanks to the numerous individuals and businesses that provided information and their time for our articles­ and features. We wish to thank our advertisers for their continued support. DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed here are the views of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of FiND iT Frederick or Pulse Publishing, LLC


SHUAN BUTCHER An Army veteran, Shuan has spent most of his life working in the nonprofit sector on issues such as arts and culture, heritage tourism, civic engagement, and community development. He is a member of the National Press Club. He published “Inspiration to Serve: 101 Quotes about Kindness, Caring, and Giving,” co-authored “Making Change for the Better: The Importance of Youth Giving,” and contributes to a variety of local, regional, and national publications.

GINA GALLUCCI-WHITE is an award-winning writer based in Frederick. Her work has been featured in a number of local, regional and national publications including USA Today 10Best website, Baltimore STYLE, Frederick Magazine and the Maryland Daily Record.

TY UNGLEBOWER is a freelance writer, fiction author, sometime stage actor and unabashed introvert. He lives in Knoxville. You can follow him on Twitter @TyUnglebower, or read his blog at

CHRISSY MILLER of Szemere Photography is an author and a portrait, small event and brand photographer creating lifestyle images with a little whimsy. She calls Frederick home. Follow Chrissy on Facebook and Instagram @Szemerephoto and through her passion project @celebratingthelight in pursuit of celebrating ordinary people in their extraordinary moments.

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Have you

found her yet?

Photo by Chrissy Miller, Szemere Photography

One of Frederick’s most iconic former residents has been immortalized in bronze and now lives along Carroll Creek Park for all to celebrate.

Sculpted by Frederick artist Sarah Hempel Irani, the larger-than-life bronze statue of Claire McCardell stands at 7.5 feet tall and watches over Downtown Frederick. She was unveiled in mid-October to much fanfare. McCardell was a groundbreaking creator of women’s sportswear and one of America’s first globally recognized designers. Born and raised in Frederick, McCardell (1905-1958) was credited with creating American sportswear. She made her mark on American fashion during the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. “McCardell’s clothes were comfortable and practical yet intrinsically chic. She insisted on pockets, even in evening gowns. She placed zippers on the side, where they could be easily reached so a woman could dress herself without assistance. Her ready-to-wear clothing line highlighted ease and continued next page


affordability without sacrificing style at a time when American women were enjoying growing independence at work and play,” according to the Frederick Art Club.

“By placing Claire McCardell’s figure on a pedestal in a prominent public place, we’re joining a national effort to ensure that more influential women break the bronze ceiling,” said art club president Marilyn Bagel. So, the next time you’re downtown, head to the east end of Carroll Creek Linear Park, between East and South Wisner streets, and visit the fashion icon who continues to influence and inspire today.


Photos by Chrissy Miller, Szemere Photography

The statue was the result of a two-year fundraising campaign by the Frederick Art Club to bring the likeness of an influential woman to Frederick.

NOMA Gallery

represents 24 local artists working in a variety of contemporary styles and mediums. Our exhibitions change monthly, featuring solo, duo and group shows, with a monthly Third Thursday Artist Talk at 7pm in the gallery.

December 31, 2021January 30, 2022 Missing Pieces Virginia Sperry

February 4-27, 2022 Everything is Connected Thomas Sterner and Annie Quinlan

March 4-27, 2022 Kuhn22 Guy Kuhn

GALLERY HOURS: Fridays & Saturdays 12-8pm / Sundays 12-4pm NOMA Gallery at the corner of 5th & N. Market St. 437 N Market St. / Frederick MD 21701

The Muse is your destination for handmade, FUNctional gifts! With a focus on work from local artisans, The Muse carries a variety of great holiday gifts, from soaps and candles to home goods, jewelry and handbags. Stop by The Muse to see what our talented community has to offer, and check everyone off your holiday shopping list!

19 N. Market St., Frederick, MD | 301.663.3632 | F @ ShopTheMuse

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Good Food, Strong Drink

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Just off New Market’s main drag is a cute boutique

and old favorites. Newbies can lean on Moe’s or

filled with ferns, peperomia, succulents and snake

Neumann’s plant expertise to figure out what plant

plants all waiting for a new home.

is right for them and the room where it will soon live.

BUDS Plant Boutique, opened last fall by best

“We pride ourselves on giving our customers as

buds since grade school Lindsay Moe and Jessica

much care information as possible so that their

Neumann, is bringing new life to town.

plants can be happy and thrive in their new homes,”

BUDS was born in spring 2021 during farmers market season. By October, the brick-and-mortar

Other than offering up new plants BUDS can

shop was open, allowing customers to find pre-

also help with repotting your existing ones. You

potted plants, succulents and arrangements as

can choose a new pot at the shop or bring in one

well as un-potted plants and a vast selection of

of your own. Drop it off at the shop and it will be

individual pots.

replanted with high-quality custom soil mixtures to

Neumann said she and Moe have always shared

complement each plant’s specific needs.

a love for houseplants and succulents, and so

The two friends say their new business venture

coming up with the idea to open the plant shop

has helped them learn about strong friendship and

together was a natural fit, “doing something that

community spirit.

we both loved while combining our individual, unique talents.” Photos courtesy of BUDS Plant Boutique

Neumann said.

“We felt the need for not just a plant store but a

They both live with their families in the New Market region and hope to partner with other local businesses to help the town grow.

local boutique where people could shop in-person, ask questions and get personalized advice for a gift or a plant for themselves,” Neumann said. Whether you’re a seasoned plant parent or new to the green thumb gig, BUDS can help. Long-time plant lovers can find unique new houseplants

Buds Plant Boutique 22C W. Main St., New Market 240.343.5883


We are your local, family owned you-make-it art studio offering fused glass, pottery painting, canvas painting, and wet clay to all ages! We host classes, events, & parties led by our experienced team of artists. HOURS:

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Remains Lit by Ty Unglebower / Gearstd

Frederick theatres survive pandemic, but not without some scars and sacrifices.



Traditionally, when a theatre closes for the night, a lamp is placed on the stage and left on. The “ghost light” is left on for any ghosts who may visit. When a theatre goes out of business, it is referred to as “going dark,” and so, the ghost light also chases away even a metaphoric connection to that kind of darkness. As of this writing, no Frederick-based theatre groups have been forced to go dark as a

Photos by Ty Unglebower

result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, none have come through the situation unscathed.



The Way Off Broadway Dinner Theatre on Frederick’s U.S. Route 40 for example, being both a restaurant and a performance space, faced particular hardships. Unable to offer curbside take-out options as standard eateries did, Way Off Broadway saw almost all of its income ceased for the first six months of the crisis. “We had just opened a brand-new show [when the pandemic shut-downs started],” said Justin Kiska, president and managing director of Way Off Broadway. “Baskerville” started its run on March 13, 2020, and the state ordered shutdowns only three days later. “We thought is was just going to be temporary.” The effect, in Kiska’s words was “devastating.” All that could be done during the total closure were a few maintenance projects and studying the everchanging recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). By Christmas 2020, the theatre was able to offer live performances again, though at a fraction of the capacity of normal times. Health inspectors told the company that it had done even more than required to do to keep patrons safe, Kiska said. The theatre’s 2021 Christmas show sold

Photos by Ty Unglebower

out and advanced interest in the 2022 season, (including “Meshuggah-Nuns!,” “Hello Dolly!,” and “Murder on the Orient Express,” among others) is already high.


Photos by Ty Unglebower



WATCH Meanwhile downtown, the Maryland Ensemble Theatre (MET) took its own pandemic bruising. Producing Artistic Director Tad Janes said the entire 2020 season was “absolutely derailed.” The MET cancelled two plays already in preproduction in March 2020, and was forced to lay off staff, decrease salaries and negotiate with creditors to stave off ruin. The most common solution for the MET’s troubles is one that is familiar to most of us by now: Zoom. Smaller productions, improv shows and original scripts were broadcast from various locations to a willing (though much smaller than normal) audience via the online platform. Most were public domain or original material, as owners of more modern and well-known scripts had not yet settled on how to handle rights for streaming performances. In June 2021, following a season of streams, the MET hosted its first in-person production, a series of unique outdoor performances called “Midsummer: A Most Rare Vision,” at ThorpeWood in Thurmont. A fairy ensemble guided groups of audience members through the wooded grounds of ThorpeWood, for an immersive eclectic mix of song, drama, aerial arts and poetry, all inspired by Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” As of this writing, indoor productions have resumed for the MET, but masked rehearsals, temperature checks and Photos by Ty Unglebower

proof of vaccinations for cast, crew and audiences are required. “…We are not back 100%,” Janes revealed, yet the 2022 mainstage season, (including “Detroit ’67,” “Meteor Shower,” and “The Legend of Georgia McBride”) are all moving ahead as planned. 27


On Frederick’s Jefferson Street, Other Voices Theatre came to a “screeching halt” in March 2020, according to Artistic Director Susan Thornton. They initially postponed spring shows to the fall, thinking the pandemic would be over by then. Socially distanced outdoor offerings were performed instead, in the theatre’s parking lot. These fall 2020 performances were free of charge, though the company accepted donations. Thornton said many patrons were generous during this tough time. Regular indoor performances on the Other Voices stage did not resume until May 2021. As with other venues, the cast was masked, and a smaller audience was required to both socially distance and provide proof of vaccination. An October 2021 production of the “Mystery of Edwin Drood” was the first to play for a full audience in the space since the start of the pandemic. (With signed masks still required for attendance.) The 2022 season picks up in March with a fully vaccinated cast and crew performing “Noises Off.”


Photos by Ty Unglebower

audience waivers, temperature checks and


Fallout from the pandemic battered the youngest theatre company the hardest. Free Range Humans founder Elizabeth Lucas was blunt in her assessment: “If the upcoming professional show is not successful, we will have to liquidate.” The show in question is a planned January presentation of “Into the Woods,” which has already been postponed twice. It might not have come to that but for the large drop in kids’ classes offered at the theatre’s FSK mall location. Those classes “pay the bills,” as Lucas said. The most recent CDC guidelines have allowed the company to offer classes of various kinds to various age groups in a mask-optional model, with social distancing enforced. This has relieved some of the pressure for Free Range Kids and Teens, as have generous donations from friends of the theatre. Grants and government assistance have been more difficult to come by, Lucas said. A second location for the company in the mall promises to offer more revenue streams if approved. But until then, the pandemic has left a particularly gaping hole for Free Range Humans to crawl out of. A gaping hole, but not, at least for now, a dark one. Free Range Humans has not gone fully dark in the face of this crisis. Fortunately, none of Frederick’s theatres have Photos by Ty Unglebower

done so, despite the punishments of a global virus that came seemingly out of nowhere, affecting us all. The lights can continue to stay on for all of them, if the community opts to attend shows, purchase subscriptions and make donations.





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As a child, Maria Lane traveled across the United

“We like to highlight the charm of each individual

States four times with her parents and siblings.

small town,” Lane says. “These are not cookie-cutter

Lane’s parents understood the importance of

designs created from afar. ...We have designs that

travel, she said, and they knew the most economical

uniquely reflect what there is to do there.”

way to do so was via road trips in a camper.

promoting, the business donates 4 percent of

in new locations, taking in the sights, trying local

sales to organizations that help each location,

cuisine and talking to residents.

such as the Canal Towns Partnership (CTP) and

Lane and her husband, Mike, continue the traveling tradition on frequent day trips, weekend getaways and cross-country adventures. Through

Photos courtesy of The Road Trip Mercantile

As a way to help the destinations they are

Over the years, the family immersed themselves

Main Street Maryland organizations in Frederick County. Lane notes the C&O collection raised more than $500 for CTP in just six months.

their travels, they’ve developed a passion for

Since their designs are created to be uniquely

exploring small towns. And in June, they started

reflective of a community, Lane notes she most

The Road Trip Mercantile, producing a variety

enjoys visiting the towns and finding inspiration.

of affordable and eco-friendly products such as

When people put on a C&O Canal history shirt or

apparel, drinkware, ornaments and accessories

take a sip out of a Frederick pint glass, she hopes

emblazoned with art showcasing special spots in

people will be excited to be able to show pride in

small towns.

small town destinations that they love.

“We felt the need to promote these small towns

-by Gina Gallucci-White

that we love so much,” Lane said. Their collection includes artwork of the C&O Canal, the City of Frederick, the City of Brunswick and the Great Allegheny Passage, with new destinations coming in 2022.

The Road Trip Mercantile 327 E. Ridgeville Drive, Mount Airy F rtmerc d @theroadtripmercantile


In Search of

i P t s e B Photo by Shuan Butcher



e i P a z z i in Frederick by Shuan Butcher

Frederick has no shortage of culinary destinations to tempt one’s taste buds, especially if you are looking to get a piece of the pie — pizza pie, that is. Everyone probably has their favorite pizza place and lots of reasons why it’s the best. Whether you favor thin crust or deep dish, dozens of toppings or plain cheese, if you’re looking for something other than your go-to pizza joint, here are five Frederck County establishments where you can get your fix of this Italian-American staple.



PRETZEL & PIZZA CREATIONS 210 N. Market St., Frederick This Downtown Frederick restaurant serves up pizza, with a twist. Pretzel & Pizza Creations makes their signature product with pretzel dough, hand blended in house. Their sauce is house-made as well. “It’s my mom’s recipe,” says Catie Serio, who owns the business with her husband, Carlo. Catie’s mom, Natalia, opened up Pretzel & Pizza Creations in 1991, and it’s been in the same Market Street location for 30 years. Inside the 19th century building with exposed brick and original ceiling tiles, you’ll find a mix of clientele, from Frederick’s young creatives and families to retired downtown residents and everyone in between. The pizza here is definitely a niche product, with a crust topped with butter and parmesan. “It is on the sweeter side,” Serio said. Pizzas feature fresh ingredients. A variety of choices are available — veggie, cheese, and vegan cheese, and on the flipside, a meat combo, buffalo chicken and a chicken pesto. Special pizza combos include the Hawaiian, marguerite, Bianca (beware, the garlic cheddar, American, provolone, swiss and mozzarella). Note, this place isn’t just for pizza. It’s worth trying some of their other menu items, particularly their soft pretzels (add on your choice of sauces or toppings) or any of their county-fair-worthy desserts. 38

Photos by Shuan Butcher

sauce is strong!) and a bubbly cheese (a blend of



221 N. East St., Frederick Pistarro’s is considered to be Frederick’s first restaurant specializing in traditional Naples-style wood-fired pizza. The name is a play on co-owner Nezih Pistar’s last name and is the nickname given to him by some family and friends. Ths shop’s pizza oven was hand made in Naples with volcanic clay. This results in a top-notch crust for every pizza. Dough is prepared from a classic recipe featuring OO Italian-milled unbleached flour. For the sauce, tomatoes used are imported from San Marzano, Italy. Pistarro’s offers about 20 different pizzas, including three vegan options. And you can’t go wrong with any that you pick. Two favorites are the Margherita with tomato sauce, mozzarella and basil, or the Donatella, which is a pizza Bianca with prosciutto, arugula and parmesan. All the pizzas here have an artisanal nature, something you would expect to get on vacation. But instead of traveling around the world, you can stay right here in Frederick. If you want a truly unique tasting experience, get the Blue Fico. Ingredients include gorgonzola, blue

Photos by Shuan Butcher

potato, figs, mozzarella and rosemary oil.



BELLISARIO’S 934 N. East St., Frederick

Nikki Bellisario grew up in a pizza shop. At the time, her family owned seven or eight Bellisario’s locations in Pittsburgh, some of which are now 50 years old. Three sites still exist, now run by the second generation. This is a family business with a family recipe for great pizza. When she moved to Frederick, Nikki swore she would never get back into the pizza business again. But in 2000, she learned of a property that was for sale, and the rest is history. Her East Street pizza shop opened to the public on June 29, 2000. Bellisario’s dough is made daily, in house. They make fresh sauce and grate the cheese at the restaurant as well. Some folks have described their pizza as New York style. Others have described it as Pittsburgh style (whatever that might mean). “It’s not New York, It’s not Chicago. It’s the best,” Nikki says. The dough is the key — it is a little thicker than New York style. And you won’t find any conveyor belts here. The pizzas are personally turned in the oven. It is that personal attention to detail that sets Bellisario’s apart.

shop with some seating. But if you are a Ravens fan, beware. The shop is full of Steelers paraphernalia. After all, the owner hails from Pittsburgh.


Photos by Shuan Butcher

They know what they do and do it well. It’s a small


ILFORNO PIZZERIA 1035 W. Patrick St., Frederick

This neighborhood pizza joint is regularly voted the best pizza in Frederick. Il forno Pizzeria, founded in 1990, is located along the Golden Mile on the western end of Frederick. The three co-owners, JP Perrin, Mike Bateman and Dave Tucker, are like family, as they all attended Frostburg State University together. Their loyal customer base is like family as well. Il Forno’s delicious pizzas are hand-tossed and topped with housemade, home-style chunky tomato sauce and whole milk mozzarella. The sauce is fabulous! More than two dozen pizzas reside on the menu and are baked in an Ambrogi Italian wood-burning stove. You won’t regret ordering their margherita pizza. Another favorite is the barbecue chicken. But if you are up for an adventure, order the Carnivore’s Dream, which includes tomato sauce, mozzarella, ham, pepperoni, ground Italian sausage and meatball, or the En Fuego, which has tomato sauce, mozzarella, chorizo, jalapeno and onion. Two distinct seating areas are available inside. Inset Photos courtesy of Il Forno

Family-style seating is available or you can grab a seat at the bar and take in a football game. Multiple television screens are always on. In warmer months, outdoor seating options exist, too.



MAGPIE PIZZA COMPANY 2A W. Frederick St., Walkersville

In Walkersville one of the newest pizza places to open in the region is Magpie Pizza Company. Magpie opened in the summer of 2021 in an effort to introduce an option that was more than “just another pizza place.” They’ve taken that one step further by creating a colorful and fun vibe to add to your experience while visiting. The ambiance includes sofas, upholstered chairs, farm chairs and nooks for customers to make themselves at home or read a book. Arcade games are also available for some fun times. Here, the pizza would be described as Connecticut style wood-fired matched with a gourmet chef's specially seasoned crust. The most popular options are The Magpie, a spin on the “supreme” pizza and the One Hot Honey, a pepperoni pizza with jalapeños, garnished with a hot honey drizzle. ••• There are so many more pizza options in the region, and they would not all fit here! In Frederick, style deep dish, Cucina Massi for white pizza, or Blue’s BBQ Co food truck, for mobile slices. Outside of Frederick, you can try King’s Pizza in Brunswck, Laurienzo Brick Oven Café in Mount Airy, or in New Market, there is Pasquale’s.


Photos courtesy of Magpie Pizza Company

check out White Rabbit Gastropub for Detroit



Hello, neighbor!

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Sometimes all you really need in life is a big, juicy burger and a side of fries. Luckily for all of us, there’s a new food truck in town specializing in exactly that. Fifty/Fifty calls itself a “burger-centric, innovative food truck” and says they’re “all in on a good burger.” This statement is very true. At Fifty/Fifty, they use fresh, locally sourced ingredients, rotated seasonally. Their signature sandwich starts with a 50% beef and 50% bacon smash patty topped with white American cheese. The basic burger is hot, fresh and delicious. And it only gets tastier from there. Choose from an extensive list of free toppings to add onto your burger, including lettuce, tomato, caramelized onions, pickles, candied Serrano peppers, Fifty/Fifty sauce, bourbon molasses, ketchup, mayo, mustard or barbecue sauce.

Photos by Molly Fellin Spence

Or try one of their signature burgers, such as the PBPBB&B – a burger topped with spicy peanut butter and sweet pickles; or She’s My Cherry burger, smothered in cherry jam and goat cheese. The Old-Fashioned comes with bourbon molasses sauce, sweet pickles and caramelized onions. For the truly adventurous, Fifty/Fifty offers up the I Can’t Feel My Face burger. Warning: this burger is very, very spicy (in case you couldn’t tell that from the name). They take the classic smash patty and top it with candied Serrano peppers then add ghost pepper sauce, with real ghost peppers, red onion, cilantro and lime. Ghost peppers measure about 1 million Scoville heat units, that’s 416 times hotter than the mildest jalapeño, said to average about 5,000 Scoville heat units. Good luck with this one! And Fifty/Fifty doesn’t leave out our vegan or vegetarian friends! Vegan offerings will change

with the season. This fall, on the menu was a Pumpkin burger, made of pumpkin puree, rolled oats and smashed chickpea patties with tzatziki sauce and pickled red onions on top. All these toppings and burgers are juicy and very flavorful, but without the right bun, a burger can be ruined. Let’s just say they got the right bun. Soft and fluffy, but substantial enough to contain all those fillings and sauces Though you’ll surely get your fill with any one of Fifty/Fifty’s burgers, don’t forget the sides! Burger + fries – we dare you to name a better duo. Fifty/ Fifty offers two varieties: regular or sweet potato fries. The “regular” have a Maryland staple sprinkling of Old Bay and include a tub of Fifty/Fifty sauce. The sweet potato fries are a unique treat. Truly sweet, they come with a dusting of cinnamon sugar and plenty of blueberry ketchup to dip them in. Find Fifty/Fifty around town by following them on social media. They post their upcoming schedule regularly on both Instagram and Facebook. Regular haunts include most of Frederick’s downtown breweries and a few other spots. So the next time you’re craving a good, oldfashioned burger with a twist, seek out the Fifty/ Fifty truck. “From the meat to the sauce, every burger we create is authentically delicious,” they say on their website. We agree. Well done.

Fifty/Fifty Food Truck F d @frederickfiftyfifty


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Explore the Du Pont sites of the

Brandywine River Valley Words and Photos By Shuan Butcher

When most think of the American titans, names such as the Rockefellers, Vanderbilts or Morgans come to mind. They built massive fortunes, lived lavish lifestyles and were the epitome of the gilded age. The Mid-Atlantic region had its own such family, the du Ponts of Wilmington, Del., and you can visit their haunts in just a short jaunt from Frederick.




Wilmington, and the surrounding Brandywine River Valley, is a great place to visit. There are some fantastic destinations in the area that highlight that era of American capitalism and have direct connections to multiple generations of the du Pont family. Start where it all began for the du Pont family, at Eleutherian Mills, the first du Pont home in America. The house has furnishings and decorative art that belonged to the family which you can see through one of the guided tours. An office, dating to 1837, is right next door. Don’t forget to check out the barn, as it contains a collection of antique weather vanes and a hodgepodge of wagons, carriages and antique cars. The property is officially known as the Hagley Museum and Library and is truly a unique place to see for anyone interested in learning more about early American industrialism. You can explore the powder yard, millwright shop, the Birkenhead Mills, as well as an 1870s steam engine. For a different, and more grandiose experience, check out other du Pont estates open to the public. The mansion at Nemours Estate, finished in 1910, has 77 rooms and is 47,000 square feet in size. Here you’ll find many glamourous rooms, and even a bowling alley in the basement. Stunning chandeliers, oil paintings, tapestries and statues will also catch your eye. The lawn is reminiscent of the grounds you would walk on at a European castle, broken into different sections such as a maze garden, oriental gardens and a stunning sunken garden.



Winterthur is another not-to-miss home. This was the childhood home and country estate for Henry Francis du Pont and is known for its 60-acre garden of stupendous beauty and the surrounding nearly 1,000 acres of woods, meadows and farmland. Board the Garden Tram to explore the property and take in the magic at the Enchanted Woods, the Sundial Garden, Magnolia Bend, Azalea Woods or the 1750 House. You will be blown away when you tour the mansion. This home has one of the finest collections of American art and antiques amassed. The Brandywine River Valley serves as an epicenter for public gardens. One of America’s finest is Longwood Gardens. Created by Pierre du Pont, these gardens are magnificent. More than 11,000 plants are on display and they have one of the largest greenhouses in the world. Catch a live concert, hear music played on the chimes tower, or enjoy one of the light installations scheduled regularly. Regardless of what time of year you visit Longwood, there is always something in bloom or something to see.




For overnight accommodations, stay at the Hotel Du Pont. Completed in 1913 to woo business clients and impress travelers, it is now a Historic Hotel of America. As such, each room is unique and far from the cookie cutter chain hotels that lack character and décor. They have hosted their fair share of celebrities and dignitaries over the past century. Be sure to ask about the suite that was once used by Bruce Willis and Demi Moore. In terms of restaurants in Wilmington, the first recommendation is brunch at Le Cavalier. Led by chef and partner Tyler Akin, Le Cavalier is inside the Hotel Du Pont. The walls are adorned with work by local and regional artists and the food is fantastic. You can’t go wrong with the Belgian waffle served with banana, Nutella and ganache. Another culinary delight in downtown Wilmington is Bardea Food & Drink. Bardea is an Italian term for “the goddess of food and drink.” The menu of this James Beard Award semifinalist focuses on shared plates with a creative Italian twist. Great choices here include the grilled romaine with sun-dried tomato, smoked pistachio and carrot hollandaise and the spicy honey pizza which includes fresh mozzarella, tomato and spicy pepperoni.



Another great dining destination is Ciro 40 Acres. This quaint place blends right in with the Trolley Square neighborhood. Dine here for one of the best sausage gravy and biscuit entrées ever made by Chef Michael DiBianca (a three-time James Beard nominee) and his team After you are done exploring some of the du Pont properties, grab a bite at the BBC Tavern and Grill in Greenville. Select the cheesesteak eggrolls or hot soft pretzels. The Monte Cristo sandwich is sinfully delightful. On your way to Longwood Gardens, the final dining suggestion for you is Buckley’s Tavern. Located in a historic home in the charming town of Centreville, the food here is superb. Kick off your meal with the pear salad then order the barbecue chicken flatbread and the quiche. Top it off with some Woodside Farm ice cream, made just down the road.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: HOTEL DU PONT and Le Cavalier 42 W. 11th St., Wilmington 302.594.3100 Hagley Museum and Library 200 Hagley Creek Road, Wilmington 302.658.2400 Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library 5105 Kennett Pike, Winterthur 800.448.3883 Longwood Gardens 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square 610.388.1000 Nemours Estate 1600 Rockland Road, Wilmington 302.651.6912 Bardea 620 N. Market St., Wilmington 302.426.2069 Ciro 40 Acres 1836 Lovering Ave, Wilmington 302.543.8948 BBC Tavern and Grill 4019 Kennett Pike, Greenville 302.655.3785 Buckley’s Tavern 5812 Kennett Pike, Centreville 302.656.9776




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Whether she’s serving up a plate of kahti kahti

Motherland Kitchen in Marietta, Ga., in 2009.

chicken or a side of jollof rice, Sabina L. Jules

The restaurant and catering service closed three

wants customers to know she cooks with love.

years later.

“Food is something that if you just cook the food

She moved to Maryland and worked in state and

because you have to cook, it shows in the food,”

federal government before deciding to go back

she says. “If you cook the food because you want

into the restaurant world. Jules chose Frederick to

somebody to eat and enjoy, you cook it differently

set up her restaurant after her sister moved here

and it shows in how the food comes out.”

and noticed the absence of African cuisine.

Jules opened Motherland Kitchen, off U.S. Route

In addition to her restaurant, Jules also founded

15 north of Frederick, in late summer 2021. There,

Motherland Spices offering folks the opportunity

she focuses on serving up African and Caribbean

to cook with the ingredients she uses daily. The

cuisine to guests clamoring for favorites such as

products, featuring herbs and spices found in

eggplant stew, jerk chicken and chicken peanut

Cameroon and around the world, are named for her

butter stew.

mother, known as Mammydoro.

Born and raised in Cameroon, Jules often watched

Jules she hopes patrons will appreciate the

as her mother cooked. As a way to bring in

authenticity of her cuisine each time they visit.

additional income to her family, she began selling fried plantains, greens and fried fish by the side of

Photos courtesy of Motherland Kitchen

the road as a teenager.

“The food will taste like back home (in Cameroon) and even better,” she says, because she uses herbs and spices found in Africa and not often

“Growing up, this whole notion of ‘food could be

found in the U.S.

a source of income’ was something that was

-by Gina Gallucci-White

imbedded in my subconscious for a long time,” she says. “If you make some good food and sold it, you would be able to make money.” After coming to the U.S. to attend college, Jules worked in the information technology (IT) field for 20 years before deciding to open her first

Motherland Kitchen & Spices 7800 Biggs Ford Road, Frederick 770.402.7077 F mammydoro d @motherlandkitchen_frederickmd



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September/October 2016

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