A sky full of fireworks, a parade of tall ships from all over the world, re-enactors in full regalia, booming cannons, fighter-jet flyovers, bands playing, a display of the latest military hardware, special historical exhibits and events, and much more. They’re all part of the hoopla that will descend upon Baltimore in mid-June, when we celebrate the 200th anniversary of the declaration of the War of 1812, which was called a draw after Baltimore fought off a two-pronged British attack on the town.
In this issue, our package on the celebration is not just about brushing up on your American history, but about all of the things going on from June 13 to 19 for locals and out-of-towners of every age and interest group. (Expect a big influx of foreign visitors, too.) Of course, we should be fervently hoping that the mess on the Jones Falls Expressway is also history by then.
Entirely too much commotion for those of you suffering from acousticophobia? Then point the family minivan east for a great (but relatively peaceful) escape to Baltimore’s backyard, the Eastern Shore. Contributor Marty LeGrand turns over every rock to find nifty stuff to do and see, including a challenging golf course on the banks of the Choptank River, boat-building classes at a maritime museum, and all the outdoorsy attractions of Assateague Island, plus lighthouse tours, birding, art studios, fishing, and folksy town fairs (greased pig contests, anyone?). Oh, did we mention food? LeGrand punctuates her guide with pointers on all the best local eateries.
There’s a lot more, too, this month, including the latest artsy happenings in Station North, the results of our annual peer survey to help you find the dentist of your dreams (is there such a thing?), a story on the close relationship police dogs have with their officer-handlers, and one of my favorites, “Home Sweet Baltimore.” Having recently settled back in Little Italy, the neighborhood of my childhood, I really enjoyed this essay by senior editor Evan Serpick about the siren-like call that humble Baltimore exerts on natives who move elsewhere for brighter lights and ruder cabbies, but then come back (as he did).