Find iT Frederick - Winter 2020

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Cover photo by Spence Photographics







Jack Frost has made his way to Frederick and his icy grip isn’t going to let go for at least a few months. In wintertime, for a lot of folks (me included!) there can be nothing better than cozying up with a big, warm blanket and a mug of tea. For those of you in that camp, may I suggest a fresh, warm pastry to go along with that tea? We recently found Sweet & Savory Bake Shop in Frederick’s Worman’s Mill neighborhood, and we are in love! Good luck choosing from among all of their delicious croissants, breads, rolls, cakes and pastries. So much good food, so little time! Find out about Sweet & Savory on Page 50. Another wonderful companion alongside your pastry is a good book. Lucky for all of us that Frederick is home to an outstanding bookshop, where a group of expert booksellers is ready to recommend your next great read. A trip to Curious Iguana is always a good idea, whether you’re looking for a great book for yourself or an outstanding gift for anyone from babies to full-grown adults. Read all about the shop and the folks who work inside starting on Page 28. No matter how you decide to spend your winter, spend some time with us, perusing this latest issue of Find iT Frederick. And when you’re done, drop me a line at to let me know what you find around Frederick.

Molly Fellin Spence, Executive Editor


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WINTER 2020 . Volume 13 . 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

COPY EDITOR Lauren LaRocca




LAUREN LAROCCA is an astrologer, herbalist, and an arts and culture journalist. She is a former staff editor at The Frederick News-Post and Baltimore magazine. Follow her on Instagram @karmarocca or visit her website

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. Before starting her freelance writing career, she was the police/fire and rescue reporter for The Frederick News-Post. Away from compiling stories, Gina can be found being the scorekeeper at her son’s baseball games, driving her daughter to dance classes and trying to understand the Game of Thrones series finale.




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If you’re seeking something different from your

Up to 10 people may be assigned to one pit on a

average date night experience, Frederick now has

busy night. The venue requires closed-toe shoes

an ax-citing option — Stumpy’s Hatchet House.

for all participants and can accommodate couples,

In mid-September, the western of Frederick The Frederick location openedside in early fall and County visitors got a whole lot tastier. Black Hoggetting BBQ & allows to release stress while Bar, a local chainby with roots in hatchets DowntownatFrederick, some exercise throwing wooden added itsOpen fourth thebusiness heart of targets. to location, those 21this andtime older,inthe

more active bar areaonthat separate fromby the main Guests are trained theisart of throwing one of

If you’re in the Middletown area and looking for a When not throwing axes, guests can watch sports truly decadent “snack,” try Black Hog’s fried mac & on one of Stumpy’s televisions, take part in games cheese, or even better, the BBQ pork fries – handsuch as skee ball, Connect 4 and large Jenga, or cut Idaho potatoes loaded down with smoked pork pick a song on the jukebox. shoulder, bacon, Black Hog sauce, and cheddar

dining space. It offers 15 craft beers onlearn tap, as well Stumpy’s multiple “ax-perts.” Guests about

cheese. It’s a five-napkin delight. “Really when it comes down to it, (hatchet

as other alcoholic beverages. properly gripping the ax, feet placement, forward

throwing is) getting back to our roots and getting Other locations include the original space on back to nature,” Simpson says. “It is not your Market Street in Downtown Frederick; a second normal place to just hang out. Our whole focus is location in Frederick, off Md. Route 26; and a the entertainment.” restaurant in Urbana Village Center. And, coming

the Middletown Valley. welcomes novices. For those who are a bit more experienced, Stumpy’s plans to offer league play This Black Hog offers the same tasty barbecue and in early 2020. sides as the other locations, but is larger, with a

Photos courtesy of Stumpy’s Hatchet House

large groups, celebrations and corporate team & cheese, baked beans and french fries. Angus building events. Folks may bring their own food and burgers, wings, gumbo and chili are also served drink, including alcoholic beverages, but axes will hot and fresh. be taken away from any impaired patrons.

momentum and distance to the target. Patrons Black Hog, owned by Mike Tauraso, is named for are encouraged to start with a two-handed throw. one of the rarest heritage breeds of hogs, which While many may feel like they have to chuck the produces a lean, micro-marbled meat, that is extra ax hard, Simpson notes the most successful tender due to the breed’s short muscle fibers. strategy is to have good form and focus. This produces a tender, moist cut of pork with a

in 2020, the restaurant will open its first Virginia

- by Gina Gallucci-White

location, in Ashburn.

unique taste, which Tauraso says he takes in Two people may throw one at a time in onepride of the providing the Frederick area.cheeky names such many pitstoavailable. All have as Pity the Fool, Brad Pit, Pit of Despair or Pit Bull. Black Hog offers pork (smoked shoulder, chopped, pit ham, ribsofand “We had aspare little bit funsausage), naming ourbeef pits,”(brisket) General and chicken (half or whole birds) barbecue meals Manager Sarah Simpson said.

Stumpy’s Hatchet House 4635 Wedgewood Blvd, Suite 101 Frederick 301-678-8679

or sandwiches. Expect traditional sides such as Southern greens, potato salad, cole slaw, mac

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Music 14

Photographs by Lauren LaRocca

their to ears Major Arcana owners love music and love sharing it with Frederick By Lauren LaRocca



Jennie Huntoon and James Calderon each fell in love with music, and specifically composing, at young ages. With a love for swing, big band and folk-rock theater musicals, Huntoon began composing on piano, when she found herself jotting down improvisations. She started playing around with composing software, wrote a choral piece as a student at North Hagerstown High School, and continues to compose pieces today. Calderon, who’s performed everything from country to jazz fusion, started composing violin in high school and wrote a piece for his high school orchestra to play. “After that, it was just like, this is what I want to do,” he said. Fast-forward a few years, and the two friends o p e n e d M a j o r A rc a n a S t u d i o t o g et h e r i n Downtown Frederick to share their passion for music through teaching, composing and hosting small concerts. “Coming together and working together and making new music is kind of a rush — like, I made this happen, but also we made this happen,” Huntoon said. “I get to perform things that are really important to me.” Huntoon and Calderon met as students at Eastern Illinois University — or, rather, they were kind of Photographs by Lauren LaRocca

forced on each other, Calderon joked.





When Huntoon started as an undergrad, he was the only composer in the undergraduate music program, so he was paired with Calderon to give her a campus tour. They became fast friends and continued on as graduate students at the school, often daydreaming about opening a studio together one day. When Huntoon returned to Maryland after graduating, she urged Calderon to move here, too, to start a studio for real. Eventually, he did. They opened Major Arcana, what they call a “starter space,” in Downtown Frederick in 2018. The one-room studio on North Court Street allows for only one lesson at a time, and it’s partitioned off to create a waiting area as well. A recording space, though somewhat still in the works, is nevertheless functional downstairs. Their endgame goal is to acquire a larger space where they can host public events. In more recent months, they began looking into opportunities for opening the space to others in the community. For instance, Castwave Studios — with the tagline “Entertainment for nerds, by nerds” — began using the studio for its podcasts on music, entertainment and pop culture ( Huntoon and Calderon also expanded into offering classes, usually for high school-aged students and adults. They’ve offered such classes as “The Fundamentals of Reading Music”





and “Introduction to Music Analysis,” which teaches the basics of chord structures, scales, the circle of fifths and so on. And they began toying with the idea of hosting shows at the space, mainly to showcase the work of students for their parents. The first was held in June. Although it’s a small venue, they can seat about 20 people, which makes for an intimate concert setting. New teachers will come in the fall, and Calderon and Huntoon will continue teaching as well and expanding as much as they can. “There’s a certain level of wizardry for some of the rehearsal logistics,” Huntoon joked. “We’re trying to offer as much as we can within the confines of the space,” Calderon added. That said, when time allows, you can often find him venturing out of the confines of the studio and into the streets of Frederick, playing at events throughout the area. “It’s a very lively scene here,” he said. “Musicians in the area really try to support other musicians. It’s very cooperative, not competitive. You don’t see

Find out more: Major Arcana Music Studio 9 N. Court St., Frederick 240-831-4174 @majorarcanamusic


Photographs by Lauren LaRocca

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Have you ever wondered why your pulled pork sandwich had to be served separately from your fries and cole slaw? Why not just pile it all together, throw some sauce on top and call it a day? Well, the folks at the Roadhouse Roots food truck are on the same page. They’ve created a delicious meal they call a “Frone,” their “solution to the never-ending battle of deliciousness and convenience.” Frones combine a full meal, starting with a nest of crispy fries, then (for the meat lovers) a layer of applewood smoked pulled pork or black beans (for the vegetarians), slaw, and topped off with a variety of other toppings and sauces. It’s all served in a large paper cone that looks as good as it tastes.

Photogrphs by Molly Fellin Spence

Personal favorite frone: the Gastro Hash. It’s got fries tossed in signature spices. It’s got applewood smoked pulled pork. It’s got spicy Mojo Love barbecue sauce. It’s got slaw. It’s got cheddar, black beans, jalapeños, scallions, and sour cream. And it’s even got a corn bread crumble topping that adds a sweetness that takes it all to the next level. The truck is also known for its inventive burgers, including Stacked: an Angus beef patty topped with applewood smoked pulled pork, Mojo Love spicy barbecue sauce, melted cheddar and provolone cheeses, Roadhouse spicy garlic pickle chips and slaw, heaped on a soft, butter-toasted bun and slathered in Roadhouse garlic Holy Aioli. The Gnarly Nomad is for the vegans, with most of what’s listed above stacked on a vegan patty. For the non-adventurous, Roadhouse Roots offers a standard cheeseburger, too. The Roadhouse Roots food truck is a family affair, owned by Aaron and Donna Diehl, and staffed by

them and their children, Cooper, Olivia and Chase. The Diehls’ two boys are high functioning on the autism spectrum, and are the inspiration behind Roadhouse Roots. Cooper had expressed an interest in owning a business and the family thought his outgoing personality and talent for creativity in the kitchen could be a natural fit for a food truck. “We jumped in with the idea in mind that our children would not only gain practical business knowledge and learn the value of self-employment, but also other important life lessons,” the Diehls explain on their website. “Our hope is that in the future our kids will take over the business.” Donna Diehl is a former high school business and computer science teacher who has spent years as an advocate for her children. Donna is the Roadhouse Roots principal chef; she developed the menu and recipes and manages the daily operations. Her husband, Aaron, kept his day job, but is a weekend warrior in the food truck, helping to cook and serve, and manages the business’s financials. The kids each play a part in the food truck as well, helping to set up and tear down, greeting customers, taking orders, and serving, among other duties. The Roadhouse Roots food truck can be found outside many of Frederick’s downtown breweries, such as Smoketown Creekside, Attaboy Beer and beyond. To find the truck’s schedule, follow them on Facebook or Instagram.

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The Faces Behind

by Lauren LaRocca


As novelist Gabrielle Zevin once said, “A place isn’t a place until it has a bookstore.” Indie bookstore Curious Iguana opened in Downtown Frederick in the fall of 2013 to much fanfare,

Photographs by S. Spence, Spence Photographics Photographs by David Spence Photographics

and since that time it has only grown in scope and influence in the community.





New books arrive each and every Tuesday

Curious Iguana is also a benefit corporation, which

(on a Tuesday in September, nearly 200 new titles

means that with every purchase at the store,

were unboxed), and near-constant author events

a portion is donated to various local and global

have brought in the likes of Chelsea Clinton, Lindy

nonprofit organizations, including Blessings in

West and many others.

a Backpack, Children of Incarcerated Parents

Each year, as the bookstore has grown, it has also deepened its roots within the community. “It’s a reciprocal relationship with the community,” owner Marlene England said. “We’re here because Photographs by David S. Spence, Spence Photographics

they’re here.”

Partnership, Frederick County Public Schools, the Housing Authority of the City of Frederick, the Literacy Council of Frederick County, the Frederick Center and several others. With a staff of nine, the bookstore has become a lot of people’s home away from home. And it’s

The Iguana’s book clubs have become increasingly

the brainpower and personalities of each of its

popular, and it’s not uncommon when friendships

staff members that brings it to life and creates

spring up from within the Iguana’s walls. More

its identity — from their passions for reading,

recently, the store began hosting what they call

their tastes and recommendations, and their

Curiosity Fairs, essentially book fairs at various

commitment to continue to bring to Frederick

venues that raise money for schools and other

the books and authors the community desires.

organizations. They partner with Frederick County Public Libraries

Let us introduce you to a few of these curious folks…

for events, including a writer’s open house that showcases local authors. 31




Meet MARLENE The name Marlene England is synonymous with Curious Iguana. She co-owns the bookstore as well as Dancing Bear Toys and Gifts, also in Downtown Frederick, with her husband, Tom. However, Marlene is at the forefront of the day-today, and year-to-year, operations of the bookstore. You could say that Curious Iguana is her “baby.” “I’ve never worked so hard, but I can’t imagine doing anything else,” England said. In order to bring to Frederick new books and author events, she and others on her team study online book catalogs six to eight months ahead of their releases, read constantly and keep up with the latest trends in the industry through multiple outlets. England reads daily emails from “Shelf Awareness Pro,” a magazine for booksellers and publishers. She keeps up with Indie Next List, uses Twitter constantly, considering it an invaluable resource, and reads a ton of advance copies of books. “Now that we’ve been around for a few years, publishers have gotten to know our store,” England said, “so they’ll tell us, ‘This one might

Photograph by David S. Spence, Spence Photographics

really resonate with your community,’ or, in the same vein, they’ll know which books might not.” England has a background in marketing and retail, but learning the book industry has been a whole new beast. And it’s one that she likes. “What I love about the book industry is that it’s not competitive. I go to indie bookstores all over, and we all want to support each other,” she said. “I guess it’s because we’re all kindred spirits.”



Meet BONNIE As the number of events at Curious Iguana has grown, so, too, has the role of Bonnie Monnier, the store’s marketing and events coordinator. She keeps up with all Iguana social media, including Instagram (her favorite — she snaps all the photos), Facebook posts and Twitter tweets. And she works to promote events through ads, all of which she designs. A favorite event of staff and customers alike is the annual “Blind Date With a Book.” Each February, an array of books are chosen by staff and wrapped in packaging so as not to reveal the titles. Instead, a small cleverly written note includes the genre and a short synopsis. Customers choose their books based on that description and get to enjoy the surprise when they unwrap them. She’s also worked on the store’s participation in the annual Small Business Saturday, when the store has hosted read-a-thons in the past, as well as Indie Bookstore Day in April. She’s now a member of the national advisory committee for the holiday. “Indie bookstores are so important to a community in owners and booksellers, and it’s just a phenomenal community. And being a bookstore and a benefit corporation — it’s the perfect combination.”


Photographs by David S. Spence, Spence Photographics

making a difference,” she said. “We meet with other


Meet LAUREN Lauren Nopenz Fairley has been a huge reader all her life and worked at her college library, where she discovered she really wanted a career in books. She first began working with the Englands at Dancing Bear Toys, before Curious Iguana opened. “When Tom and Marlene approached me with their bookstore idea and asked if I wanted to help get it started, I was immediately in.” As operations manager at the bookstore, she handles multiple day-to-day tasks to ensure that the store is running smoothly, from receiving and sending book orders to keeping track of book fairs and book clubs. Most importantly, though, she said she’s there to make sure all customers are having an amazing experience. “We want to be a big part of the Frederick community and strive to make sure everyone feels welcomed and represented in our store,” she said.



Meet EM Em Perper has always been a bookworm. “I was so attached to books,” they said. “The only time I ever got detention, it was for reading in chorus. That was my biggest vice. Perper was living in Mount Airy when Curious Iguana opened, and was, no doubt, immediately drawn to it. They spent hours there, poking through books, before reaching out to England early on to ask if the store was hiring. “I was elated when she responded,” Perper said, and started as a part-time bookseller there. This year Perper moved to full-time as the store’s lead bookseller and content coordinator. With some initial guidance from England, Perper writes pitches for author events, learning the art of a well-crafted email query. And they help to develop programs, such as the Read Broader program, a year-long reading challenge that “is meant to get people out of their comfort zones,” Perper said. That said, each staffer has their own tastes, and they all know one another’s pretty well by now. “I love memoirs,” Perper said, “and books that take

Nopenz Fairley is a fan of YA (young adult books); bookseller Melinda Beatty gravitates toward sci-fi; Monnier prefers children’s books and sad, heartbreaking nonfiction (just give her the gutwrenching stuff and she’s good). Perper’s personal goal is to read 10 books each month. “Lauren reads like, over 300 books a year. She’s like a machine,” Perper said. “But there’s no sense of competition. Sometimes I think, ‘OMG, I should be reading more,’ but then you remind yourself, you’re doing this because you love it.” 36

Photographs by David S. Spence, Spence Photographics

place in boarding schools.”


What’s Next at the Curious Iguana? You’ll find Curious Iguana booksellers at off-site community events, including the Frederick Speaker Series and Frederick Reads, and of course at their shop throughout the year. Here’s a few other Curious Iguana events you may want to check out:

Read Broader 2020 Read outside your literary comfort zone by participating in Read Broader 2020. Each month the Curious Iguana’s book experts will introduce a category and recommend related titles. Share what you’re reading using the tag #ReadBroader2020, and you may be featured on Curious Iguana’s social media. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to win special prizes curated by the booksellers.

Book Clubs The shop’s line-up for next year includes Tuesdays with Tea, which kicks off in January, as well as Global Voices, Historical Fiction, and Supper & Stories (in conjunction with Nido’s restaurant in Frederick). Global Voices launches in February, and Historical Fiction and Supper & Stories begin in March.

Book Talk At 11 a.m., on Saturday, Feb. 8, meet Laura Renauld, author of the new children’s book, “Fred’s Big Feelings: The Life and Legacy of Mister Rogers.” Free event at the bookstore.

Curious Iguana 12 N. Market St., Frederick 301-695-2500





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Old Jewelry

becomes New Again

Braddock Heights goldsmith Stacey Krantz specializes in creating unique jewelry designs from unused customer pieces by Molly Fellin Spence


After almost 18 years of wear, I noticed last summer that my beloved sapphire engagement ring was showing signs of deterioration. The prongs holding in the ring’s central stone were coming apart, and half were so worn down that I worried I would lose the stone my husband gave me almost two decades before. So, I stopped wearing my ring, and wondered what to do about it. A few weeks later, I bumped into Stacey Krantz, owner of InBloom Jewelry in Braddock Heights. Stacey is a gifted jewelry designer and goldsmith whose beautiful floral-inspired earrings and necklaces I already loved wearing. I mentioned my ring problem, and Stacey’s eyes lit up. Bring it to my studio, she said, and let’s come up with some solutions. A few weeks later, I was standing in Stacey’s charming jewelry studio, an experience all its own. As you walk up to the door you become aware of Stacey’s attention to detail; from the peaceful garden at the entrance, to the antique artifacts interspersed among her beautiful handmade jewelry, everything is well designed and delightful. The warmth of the light-filled studio is a welcome departure from the traditional jewelry-shopping environment. Stacey’s depth of technical knowledge and practical experience quickly puts customers at ease. Stacey took one look at my damaged ring and began sketching. Multiple ideas flowed from her pencil, as she designed, on the fly, several ideas for how a new ring, featuring my cherished center stone, could look. I joined her at her studio a few more times, bringing some older gold pieces I never wore to contribute to the cause. Soon, we came up with a new custom-designed ring that we both loved. Within weeks, Stacey’s creation was on my finger, showcasing my sapphire — bezel set for safety — in a gorgeous branch-themed design. The whole process was delightful, and Stacey could not have been more helpful or fun to Photographs courtesy of InBloom Jewelry

work with. And I am not alone in my delight. You’ll most often find Stacey, a custom jeweler, reinventing her client’s cherished family heirlooms into new pieces. She offers clients the unique option to bring in outdated or unworn pieces, reset stones and use them toward a new design, or create a brand-new custom-designed piece. Working one-on-one with customers on custom projects adds depth to Stacey’s work.


Photo courtesy Photographs Photograph courtesy courtesy of theof Downtown ofInBloom InBloomJewelry Frederick Jewelry Partnership



“My deepest intention is for my artistry to be in service to my client,” she says. “I use my designer’s eye and technical skills cultivated over two decades to execute what, in many cases, can be the most personally meaningful and symbolic pieces for the wearer.” Stacey’s technical skills are focused on old-world techniques including stone setting, wax carving, hand engraving and fabrication. All pieces are created by hand in the studio. Contrary to most modern jewelers, Stacey does not use any type of computer-aided design or manufactured pieces. Her focus on mastery of traditional metal and goldsmithing techniques includes a 20-year career studying under masters in many aspects of traditional jewelry making, including hand carving, advanced stone setting and traditional hand engraving. Laura Silberman had a similarly delightful experience working with Stacey to create custom pieces for herself, her daughter and her daughter-in-law. Silberman, an artist herself, first met Stacey through mutual Frederick friends. She purchased earrings at first, during an art show, and said she was drawn to the pieces’ beauty, quality of craftsmanship, and nod to nature with garden and flower-based shapes. “When you have the opportunity to purchase directly from the maker, it’s a chance to witness how their personality and passion has been shaped into their art,” Silberman said. “Stacey loves what she is doing and that infectious energy is clearly evident in everything she makes.” Silberman says she usually purchases Stacey’s jewelry from her at her Braddock Heights studio.

Photograph by David S. Spence, Spence Photographics

“Those visits are special because it’s a chance to see her studio in action, look at pieces she is currently creating, and just spend time together talking about art, life, and family,” she said. On one of those visits to her studio, she and I began to talk about something special she could make for me.” Stacey mentioned that she could use the precious stones and value of the metal from unworn jewelry in Silberman’s collection to recreate a new piece of jewelry. She said she especially loved the idea because she had recently inherited jewelry from both her mother and mother-in-law. “There was sentimental value in that jewelry, but the styles and sizes just did not fit



into my jewelry wardrobe,” she explained. “The idea of repurposing those items into something I would want to wear was a perfect solution.” At first, Silberman focused on creating new rings for herself, but soon Stacey helped her expand her ideas to include creating special items for her daughter (a necklace) and her daughter-in-law (a ring), as well. Silberman brought in jewelry pieces she did not want, or no longer wore to Stacey to judge their value and get her feedback on what would be good to repurpose. “Stacey helped me sort through these items and determine what would be best to use. She even encouraged me to keep one or two pieces due to their own design value,” she said. Next, the jewelry was sent to a company that removed and returned the set stones and assessed the final value of the metal (gold, platinum or silver) of each piece. “I turned old pins, single earrings, bracelets and odd baubles into a collection of precious stones and dollar value to be used in newly created jewelry,” Silberman said. Silberman called the experience a “fun, exciting creative collaboration.” Throughout the process, Silberman said, her voice was important, and Stacey took all of her wants and needs into consideration. “Since I wanted to create several pieces, we talked about each one and who it was for. I chose a branch-style ring set with little diamonds for my daughter-in-law. I planned to gift the ring … as a 30th birthday gift. The ring was a huge hit. I wanted to create a special piece for my daughter using a diamond from my own mother-in-law’s wedding band. We decided a drop necklace featuring the diamond would be the perfect style for her. We chose a flower-themed setting. I gave Florence, Italy. It was a happy way to include her grandmother in the ceremony in spirit. My daughter continues to wear the necklace on a regular basis.” Silberman said Stacey is an “expert craftsperson” who takes “great care in the quality of each finished piece.” One of the favorite pieces that Stacey and Silberman designed was a double leaf wrap design.


Photographs courtesy of InBloom Jewelry

the necklace to my daughter to wear at her beautiful wedding in


“I love the natural multi-layered effect of all of the strands of gold that create this ring,” Silberman said. “I have had jewelry made by other jewelers and the poor communication between us resulted in a finished piece that was OK, but not exciting. Working with Stacey was a completely different situation. Not only did she explain her vision and process, she also listened to my own ideas and had me be a part of the creative process.” Judy Deason, who lives in Downtown Frederick first learned about InBloom Jewelry and Stacey’s custom work via a social media post. “I loved that Stacy was a local artist and that her pieces were all unique and based on nature,” she said. Deason first purchased several identical sets of Stacey’s hoop earrings for dear friends, “to remind us that no matter how far away we are, we are always connected.” And she recently purchased a pair of violet earrings for her sister, as African violets were their mother’s favorite flowers. To celebrate Deason’s 65th birthday, she recently brought several gold and diamond pieces she was no longer wearing to Stacey in order to design a new ring that could be worn every day and be meaningful to her and her personal journey. Deason met with Stacey and spent time looking at her old jewelry and discussed at length what she wanted to achieve. “The process was so much fun - Stacey was so open and inviting to all my suggestions and ideas which she then went to work her magic.” Deason’s final piece was a 14K gold ring with seven diamonds of varying sizes in a petal design that represents her personal life journey. “The ring is so comfortable to wear every day,” she said. In addition to custom design, Stacey has built extensive collections in both sterling and gold available for sale in her Braddock Heights studio as well as online. Her studio is open year-round, by appointment.

InBloom Jewelry 6801 Maryland Ave., Braddock Heights 240-490-8038



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Photo by Leigh Anne Brader Photography

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Photographs by Molly Fellin Spence

Handcrafted breakfast pastries are one of life’s

breads, scones, cookies and cheesecakes she

true delights. Cheese danish, chocolate or almond

perfected during culinary school at L’Academie de

croissant, cream scones or èclairs are truly

Cuisine in Gaithersburg.

inspirational, when prepared well. Years ago, many towns had a small, local bakery filled with such delights daily. But now, it can be difficult to find a baker able to take the time to create these tasty treats properly and bake them with care.

cakes. Recently Gourley became inspired by visits to Frederick County’s top wineries, and couples’ choosing to celebrate their unions at wine-themed weddings. As a result, she expanded her liquered

Lucky for Frederick, pastry chef Meghan Gourley

buttercream line featuring Kahlua, Grand Marnier and

opened a storefront to showcase and sell her sublime

Amaretto buttercreams, to include The Wine Line,

baked goods in the Worman’s Mill neighborhood,

a line of premium cakes and buttercreams, infused

tucked back behind Md. Route 26 and the bustling

with red, white and sparkling wines.

shops that line it.

Photographs by Spence Photographics

And she’s still offering her creative celebration

So, whether you’re looking for a great-looking and

Sweet & Savory Bake Shop is among the

great-tasting celebration cake or seeking a delicious

storefronts at The Village Center at Worman’s Mill,

raspberry cream or bacon cheddar chive scone,

less than a mile from Clemson Corner and Wegman’s

baklava babka or roasted tomato and mozzarella

in Frederick. It’s worth the trip to find Sweet & Savory

danish for an out-of-the-ordinary breakfast, Sweet &

and its array of delicious creations.

Savory Bake Shop is the place to find it in Frederick.

Gourley opened her business about 15 years ago, offering primarily wedding and celebration cakes. Though she thought she’d remain a small custom cake business, in 2018, Gourley found out about the opportunity to build a new storefront, and grabbed it. She’s since expanded her offerings to include the French pastries, sweet and savory

Sweet & Savory Bake Shop The Village Center at Worman’s Mill 1020 Mill Pond Road, Frederick 240-651-3716 @sweetsavorymd


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to DC by Molly Fellin Spence



Frederick’s proximity to Washington, D.C. can be both a blessing and a curse. Unpredictable traffic volumes mean sometimes it can take an hour to travel “down the road” while other times it can take half the day. Winter is an ideal time to visit our nation’s capital for an eventful day trip when you can avoid large crowds, have an easier time at parking, and enjoy hot spots that the tourists overwhelm during other months.


17 stations, and 183 videos housed on five

A trip to D.C. just isn’t a trip to D.C. without a visit

experience viewed through the lens of Civil

to one of the Smithsonian museums. They’re free to visit, open nearly every day of the year, and have surprisingly good food options inside. Twenty museums and galleries, plus the National Zoological Park make up the Smithsonian properties, with 17 of them located in Washington, D.C., and 11 of

Photographs by Molly Fellin Spence

those concentrated on the National Mall.

floors. Collections include the African American Rights, Education, Families, the Military, Politics, Slavery, Music, Religious Groups, the American West, Clothing and Dress, Segregation and LGBTQ+ among other topics. Exhibitions include Sports: Leveling the Playing Field. According to curators, “sports matter far beyond the playing fields. Though historically denied opportunities to

Ever since the National Museum of African

compete at the highest levels, African American

American History and Culture opened at 1400

athletes have recorded impressive achievements

Constitution Ave NW in 2016 the only way to gain

and also utilized sports to fight for greater rights

entry has been via timed entry tickets. Though

and freedoms.” The exhibition demonstrates that

they’re free, they can be difficult to come by. Luckily,

sports can be a way to measure racial progress in

in the “off-season” – September through February –

America, and encourages visitors to think about

on weekdays, visitors can walk up to the door and

how they can help to make the country a more

enter without a timed ticket. (On weekends, you’ll

equitable place through honest discussions on

still need to reserve a pass in advance.)

race and social justice.

This museum comprises 85,000 square feet of

Even in the off-season, this museum is crowded

exhibition space, with nearly 3,000 objects, 12

and wait times to get inside exhibits can be quite

exhibitions, 13 different interactive areas with

lengthy. Be prepared to spend an entire day here, 57

Obama’s portrait does not include an underlying art historical reference, but some of the flowers in the background carry special meaning for him. The chrysanthemums, for example, reference the official flower of Chicago. The jasmine evokes Hawaii, where he spent the majority of his childhood, and the African blue lilies stand in for his late Kenyan father, according to the Smithsonian. The portrait is on display in the America’s Presidents Exhibition at the museum, on the second floor. Also on display nearby are images of the past 44 U.S. presidents, starting with George Washington. Six presidents are given expanded attention “because of their significant impact on the office,” according to and return for additional visits, in order to see an

the Smithsonian: Washington, Andrew Jackson,

adequate amount of its offerings.

Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D.

National Museum of African American History

Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan.

and Culture

One of the most iconic images on display is Alexander

1400 Constitution Ave NW

Gardner’s “cracked-plate” image of Abraham Lincoln, • @nmaahc

which was made at his D.C. studio on Feb. 5, 1865. Only one such image exists because the glass

GET A CLOSER LOOK In February 2018, the official portraits of 44th

plate—the medium that predated film—cracked when Gardner applied the emulsion to it that would

President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama were unveiled to great fanfare at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, which commissioned them. For months it was challenging to get a closer look at either portrait at to form long lines for a chance to see the paintings up close. This winter is your chance to visit the National Portrait Gallery and spend as much time as you’d like perusing the work of artist Kehinde Wiley (who created President Obama’s portrait) or artist Amy Sherald (who painted Michelle Obama). Wiley is known for his vibrant, large-scale paintings of African Americans posing as famous figures from the history of Western art. President


Photo courtesy of the West Virginia Tourism Office

the gallery, with velvet ropes encouraging visitors

create the image. He pulled one portrait and then

And “The Struggle for Justice” showcases the

threw the plate away. “This image of Lincoln has a

determined men and women—from key 19th-

special power. Taken at the end of the Civil War, it

century historical figures to contemporary

shows that he is confident of winning the war and

leaders—who struggled to achieve civil rights for

looking forward to the ‘binding up of the nation’s

disenfranchised or marginalized groups.

wounds.’” In the image, Lincoln looks exhausted and the lines on his face are etched deep. It is fascinating to look at up close.

National Portrait Gallery 8th St NW & F St NW • @nationalportraitgallery

Upstairs on the third floor is where you’ll find Sherald’s portrait of Michelle Obama, in a room surrounded by the likes of L.L. Cool J (also by Wiley) and Toni Morrison, in the 20th Century Americans exhibit. The National Portrait Gallery is truly amazing in its ability to show images of people – some famous, some not – that add context to the American experience, in the present and past. The exhibition “In Mid-Sentence,” which continues through March, Photographs by Molly Fellin Spence

presents a selection of photographs from museum’s collection that depict moments of communication: intimate confessions, public speeches, exchanged jokes, political confrontations, lectures and more. One image on display is of President John F. Kennedy in mid-speech, with video accompaniment to add context. Fascinating.


SCORE A SOUGHT-AFTER TABLE, OR TAKE A FUNKY BREAK Washington, D.C. has always been on the map as the center of the politics world. But what about the food world? In recent years, D.C. has been showing up on lists of the best restaurant cities in America.

for Washington, D.C.’s resurgent 14th Street

Many wonderful restaurateurs have been opening

corridor,” according to Starr Restaurants. Dine on

up eateries in the city in recent years, putting it on

French classics such as onion soup gratinée, steak

the culinary map as well.

frites and escargots, as well as bouillabaisse and

“Outstanding Restaurateur” in 2017, is well known

cassoulet. It’s a transporting experience, without the expensive Paris plane fare.

in Philadelphia for his 20 successful restaurants

The popular restaurant is crowded most evenings

there, such as Buddakan, Parc and Morimoto. Starr

for dinner, and don’t even think about walking up

is expanding his restaurant empire to other cities,

for a table during the summer or fall months. You’ll

and currently operates two in Washington, D.C.

wait hours. But in the winter? You’re in.

Le Diplomate on 14th Street NW is a celebrated

Le Diplomate

French bistro where you can order a cappuccino

1601 14th St NW

and croissant on a lazy weekend afternoon or plan


an all-out celebratory dinner. Le Diplomate “pays • @lediplomatedc

sincere homage to French cafè culture, providing a versatile gathering place that’s become an anchor


Photographs by Molly Fellin Spence

Stephen Starr, James Beard award winner for

Not in the mood for a full-blown dining experience, but need a snack or drink to tide you over on your long day in D.C.? Two funky little options are where I always go. La Colombe Coffee Roasters has cafès currently located in seven cities across the U.S., and now boasts five locations in Washington, D.C. The coolest is tucked away on Blagden Alley NW, surrounded by gorgeous murals and funky little shops. La Colombe is known for its draft lattes – poured fresh as you order and so much better than anything you’d get from a can. Creamy, frothy caffeine, with a touch of sweetness. It’s heaven in a glass. La Colombe Coffee Roasters 5 locations in D.C., including 924 Blagden Alley NW

If tea is more your thing, head to one of the


four Washington locations of Teaism, an Asian- • @lacolombecoffee

inspired teahouse founded in the city in 1996. To accompany the teas, and to highlight the cuisines of countries where teas are grown, Teaism serves curries, bento boxes and other healthy Asianinspired meals in a rustic, fast-casual setting. My favorite location is on 8th Street NW, since it’s just a few blocks of walking from the Mall and all the Smithsonian museums there. Try any one of the delicious hot or iced teas. And be sure to order a chocolate salted oat cookie – one of the biggest cookies you’ll find in the city, with a little bit of crunch, a little bit of salt and a whole lot of chocolate. Teaism 4 locations in D.C., including 400 8th Street NW • @teaism_dc



at its finest

With a county population of 300,000 and 13 golf courses, Clustered Spires has earned “Best of Frederick Golf Course”! Golf Digest awards Clustered Spires a HHHH rating. Clustered Spires reputation is a great conditioned golf course with wonderful greens and considered the best value golf course in central Maryland.


Monday–Thursday ........ $43 Friday............................. $47 Saturday & Sunday ....... $61


Monday–Friday ............. $33


5 pm–Dusk .................... $27

8415 Gas House Pike | Frederick, MD 21701 | 301-600-1295 |

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Special Events at

Catoctin Furnace

“In their Own Voices”: Wednesday, February 26, 2020 from 11am-1pm at the Thurmont Public Library, 76 E. Moser Rd. Thurmont, MD. In this 9th annual commemoration of Black History Month, students from Silver Oak Academy will present living history scenes from “Spirits of the Furnace” and serve food prepared from traditional recipes. Free Admission but RSVP requested, 443-629-8661.

Maryland Iron Festival! Saturday and Sunday, May 16 and 17, 2020!

The Maryland Iron Festival will be celebrated within the historic village, Catoctin Mountain Park, and Cunningham Falls State Park. The festival celebrates the region’s history as an early center for iron making. The second annual festival will feature an array of live demonstrations including blacksmithing and casting, hands-on activities, delicious historic foods, tours, a wide variety of arts, crafts, and jewelry, live music performances, “Feats of Strength” including cannonball tosses and anvil-lifting contests, a wine and beer garden, and lots of children’s activities. Visit our website below for a full lineup of events. Free Admission.

Fall Fest: Friday and Saturday, October 9 and 10, 2020, 10am-4pm.



Spend a day celebrating autumn in historic Catoctin Furnace at the 9th Annual Fallfest! Watch apple butter boiling over an open fire and purchase a pint fresh from the kettle. Traditional food, including soup and scones, will be available for purchase. Free Admission.

Spirits of the Furnace: Saturday, October 17, 2020, 6:30pm-8:30pm In

partnership with Cunningham Falls State Park, Silver Oak Academy, and Harriet Chapel the Historical Society will present the 19th annual “Spirits of the Furnace”, a guided night tour through the historic Catoctin Iron Furnace and Village, with stops in historic structures and along the landscape. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and under. All proceeds will benefit the preservation and interpretation of the historic village. Admission is limited to 75 (15 per group beginning every half hour) and must be purchased in advance. To purchase tickets, visit or call 443-629-8661.

Traditional Village Christmas: Saturday, December 5, 2020 from 10-4 pm. Decorate a fresh wreath with bows, bells, ornaments, and pine cones at this annual holiday event! Enjoy hot cider, homemade soup, and delicious baked goods. Wonderful locally made crafts, jewelry, and art for sale. Kids activities and a visit from Belsnickel! Free Admission.

All events except “In their Own Voices” will take place at 12607 and 12610 Catoctin Furnace Road, Thurmont, MD 21788. Learn more about Catoctin Furnace history, activities, and special events at or by calling 443-463-6437.

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