New Tour Offerings & Suggestions
Annapolis/Anne Arundel County
Maryland LIVE! Casino (Arundel Mills Slots) –Maryland's newest gaming and entertainment experience is a $500 million multi-use complex spanning 12 acres. The casino includes 4,750 slot machines and electronic table games, nationally-acclaimed restaurants, an entertainment venue and other first-class amenities. Phillip’s has recently announced they will have a restaurant in this location.
Jolly Express Holiday Lights Tour – Watermark offers a holiday lights tour by boat, during December. Hop aboard the Miss Anne for a Spa Creek Holiday Lights Tour aboard the Jolly Express. The 24-foot tug-style vessel is adorned with reindeer antlers and a blinking red nose on her bow. With Santa as its captain, the 45-minute tour takes in the lights around Annapolis Harbor and up Spa Creek. Contact Watermark & Annapolis Tours, 410-268-7601, www.watermarkjourney.com
Lights on the Bay – This spectacular drive-through holiday lights show beside the Chesapeake Bay features traditional Maryland-themed favorites along with Penguin Village, North Pole and Whimsical Fairy Tale displays. Proceeds benefit Anne Arundel Medical Center. Takes place at Sandy Point State Park, near Annapolis. Tel: 443-481-3161, www.dnr.state.md.us/publiclands/southern/sandypoint.asp
- Hotel at Arundel Preserve, near Arundel Mills, was constructed using LEED-Silver standards. This full-service 150-room property offers more than 10,000-square feet of indoor & outdoor meeting space, including a 5,000-square foot grand ballroom. Features include complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, full-service business center, indoor pool, fitness center, free shuttle service and unlimited faxes and local phone calls. The Grillfire restaurant is located within the hotel.
- Fairfield Inn-BWI – 105 rooms
Fort McHenry National Monument & Historic Shrine has opened its new Visitor & Education Center. The 17,665 square foot facility is divided into three sections: the causes of the War of 1812, the dramatic moment that inspired Key to write the anthem, and how the anthem & flag became symbols of the American spirit. Technology has been added with touch-screen monitors, state-of-the-art animation and interactive displays.
Baltimore has a new fleet of free eco-friendly buses to its streets. The Charm City Circulator (CCC) offers three distinct routes. It serves the needs of visitors, residents and employees by providing fast, convenient and energy-efficient way to move about Baltimore's downtown area. www.charmcitycirculator.com
- The Orange Route loop travels east and west, from Harbor East to the B&O Railroad Museum.
- The Purple Route travels north and south, from the cultural area of Mount Vernon to Federal Hill.
- The Green Route Loop links Fells Point to Johns Hopkins Medical campus.
Charm City Food Tours: Fells Point Food Tour – The Fells Point Food Tour is a guided, narrated walking tour, where foodies will stop to sample specially made dishes at unique family-owned restaurants. Highlights include sausages from a 90-year old family run factory, fourth-generation Greek family recipes, drinks from the nation’s only Grand Marnier club, and Baltimore’s indigenous cookie. www.BaltimoreFoodTours.com
The B&O Railroad Museum will continue with the exhibit “The War Came by Train.” Experience the Civil War like never before, with the most extensive collection of authentic Civil War period locomotives and rail cars in North America. Enjoy a narrated train ride along the tracks near Carroll Park, located along the museum’s track site of a civil war campground, known as Camp Carroll and Camp Chesebrough.
The War Came by Train, the 13-Mile Tour of the B&O Railroad - This tour begins at the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, birthplace of American railroading, and ends at the B&O’s Ellicott City Station, the oldest surviving railroad station in America. You will experience the civil war and its impact on the B&O Railroad, its laborers, and the local populations of both cities and how they coped with and adapted to the most tragic four years in American history.
Baltimore’s M&T Bank Stadium will be the site of:
- Maryland vs. Virginia Tech Football, (Oct-Nov 2014)
- The 2014 Army-Navy Game, December 13, 2014
- The 2016 Army-Navy Game, December 10, 2016
Port of Baltimore
- Carnival Cruises is offering year round cruises on the Carnival Pride to Bermuda and the Eastern Caribbean.
- Royal Caribbean’s Enchantment of the Seas is offering year round cruises to Bermuda, Bahamas, Eastern Caribbean and Southern Caribbean.
- American Spirit has several small ship cruises scheduled for the Chesapeake Bay and the Mid-Atlantic Inside Passage. www.cruisemaryland.com
Ripley's Believe It or Not opened a museum at Harborplace. The company, known for its "odditoriums," also has a location in Ocean City as well as attractions around the country and world.
Power Plant Live! Entertainment Complex has undergone an $11 million facelift. The renovations include the installation of an outdoor roof and covered concert stage. They also have welcomed the Baltimore Comedy Factory, PBR Baltimore Luckie’s Liquors & Joe Squared Pizza and Leinenkugel’s Beer Hall have opened.
The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) is reinstalling its contemporary art wing and launching a three-year, comprehensive renovation plan leading up to its 100th Anniversary in 2014. The contemporary art wing features a significant collection of American art from the last six decades, including major late paintings by Andy Warhol, as well as works by Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Donald Judd, Glenn Ligon, Jasper Johns, Bruce Nauman, Robert Rauschenberg, and Anne Truitt. The museum is also home to a remarkable collection of notable international artists, including Olafur Eliasson, Thomas Hirschhorn, Susan Philipsz, and Franz West.
Nick’s Fish House – located on the water, can offer group dining options for lunch, dinner and crab feasts.
Phillip’s Inner Harbor Restaurant is now located in the Power Plant building, in the former space of ESPN Zone.
Bubba Gump Shrimp Company will be is opened in Harborplace, former location of Phillip’s.
- Four Season Hotel-Baltimore offers a chic, five-star resort-like getaway in the heart of Harbor East. The hotel is surrounded by upscale dining, entertainment, and shopping in a vibrant, strollable neighborhood. Features include 256 spacious guest rooms and 45 well-appointed suites. The Grand Ballroom, Cobalt Ballroom, 8 meeting rooms and a boardroom, all encompass 20,800 square feet of function and pre-function space. There is a Spa & Fitness Center will 11 treatment rooms, outdoor pool with large terrace facing the Inner Harbor, and underground parking. For dining, Wit & Wisdom will offer an American tavern menu and Pabu is modeled after traditional Japanese drinking establishments.
- Tremont Hotel has completed a $6 million renovation. All 303 suites have received new paint and wall coverings, carpet, in-room safes, flat panel HD Televisions, massaging showerheads, Wi-Fi, and alarm clocks with iPod docking stations.
- Best Western Plus-Baltimore – 49 rooms
- Sleep Inn-Baltimore – 62 rooms
- Hotel Brexton – 29 rooms
Sagamore Farm House is available for touring and works under the umbrella of Amy Larkin and the Under Armor Events Team for their activities. Sagamore Farm offers not only a beautiful tour venue that is rich in history , but it is also a work in progress, intent upon developing a successful stable of Thoroughbred Race Horses.(Recently, one of our horses, Shared Account, won a major 2010 Breeders ‘Cup race, the Fillies and Mares Turf)
- Hampton Inn & Suites-Edgewood – Open with 134 rooms
Monster Mini Golf, a year-round indoor glow-in-the-dark mini golf has opened near Jessup. They have 11,000 square feet of space for indoor events.
The Robinson Nature Center - The state-of-the-art $17.6M "green" facility, the James H. and Anne E. Robinson Nature Center. Inside, visitors of all ages enjoy interactive exhibits on local habitats, wildlife, and the Chesapeake Bay, a children’s discovery room, and a digital, domed nature theater. Outside, you will soon be able to explore interpreted trails leading to the Middle Patuxent River and historic Simpsonville Mill. The 23,000-square-foot Center reflects years of creative and innovative efforts of educators, community leaders, designers, wildlife experts, historians, and resource conservationists. Located at 6692 Cedar Lane, Columbia, Tel: 410-313-0400
Hollywood Slots-Perryville is open. Enter a world of incredible action with 1,500 of the newest, hottest slots including Wheel of Fortune, Sex in the City slots, Kitty Glitter, Cash Spin with U-Spin and Advantage Revolution. Try your hand at Sunset Video Poker Bar or enjoy the big excitement of electronic Blackjack, Three Card Poker or Roulette. Stop in and enjoy a delicious meal in the Epic Buffet; featuring the boundless variety of dishes from both land and sea including peel-and-eat shrimp, the freshest fish, hand-carved meats and a great selection of desserts. You can also take a break from the action at Extras Grill. Make sure you stop by the Rodeo Drive Gift shop and take a piece of Hollywood home with you!
- Comfort Suites-Elkton – 82 rooms
The Olde Crisfield Crab & Steakhouse will re-opens in the Spring. Located on the water, Olde Crisfield can accommodate groups up to 300 people for meals or crab feasts. They will also offer a culinary experience, with history of the local seafood industry, and a crab cake making demonstration. www.oldecrisfield.com
The Avalon Theatre now has a Stolz Listening Room which is the perfect size for motor coach passengers – and they can put together a show easily with the Barber Shoppers, local comedians, small bands, etc. and would love to tap into the motor coach business
The Frederick Douglass Monument adds a new dimension to the Frederick Douglass Tour. A special tour with Dockside Express can be arranged. Thousands of people have visited the monument since it was implemented on the grounds of the Court House in Easton. Here is where he stood when he gave his last speech in Talbot and behind the Court House, site of the original where he was incarcerated.
- Wine Fest at St Michaels – April - wine tastings throughout the town of St Michaels, live music, food demonstrations, and culinary events along with the sale of your festival favorite wines.
- Oxford Day – April – a fun day in Oxford, MD featuring a 10k Run, 5K walk, Pancake Breakfast, Dog Show, Street Parade, Re-enactment, Live Music in the park, Gospel Music at church, free skipjack rides, kids activities, and more.
- Frederick Douglass Day - May - The Frederick Douglass Honor Society and the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum are once again hosting Frederick Douglass Day. This fun-filled family day will feature entertainment, regional food, a genealogy workshop, educational activities, museum and community exhibits, and numerous children's activities. Come learn more about the life and work of Talbot County's favorite son and one of America's most important leaders.
- Antique and Classic Boat Festival – June - The largest of its kind, it features more than 100 antique and classic boats, boat building demonstrations, maritime artists and craftsmen, craft vendors, classic used boats, motors, and nautical flea market, along with live music, food, and more. www.chesapeakebayacbs.org
- Tilghman Island Seafood Festival – June – enjoy live music, great seafood, live demonstrations by local watermen aboard their boats, crafts, and more.
- Chesapeake Folk Festival - July – Celebrate the Bay’s people, food, music, work and traditions. Enjoy live music, a variety of food items and wines from Maryland vineyards, maritime and food way demonstrations, boat rides, and craft vendors.
- Plein Air Festival in Easton – July - The artists in these competitions have a few hours to paint from blank canvas to finished painting framed. The art goes on sale when the bell rings. It’s a great way to buy magnificent art at reasonable prices. Also at the Academy Art Museum and the Tidewater Inn, the paintings created by the juried artists from around the country are on display for sale through the weekend.
- Talbot Watermen’s Appreciation Day - August - Meet Chesapeake watermen celebrating their heritage. Watch professionals in action at a Boat Docking Contest or take a chance in the silent auction, featuring local artwork. Eat your fill at our crab feast, or enjoy hot dogs and cold beer while listening to live music.
- Easton Airport Day – October – Featuring skydivers, warbird-formation flying, learn to fly seminar, classic car show, Maryland State Police Trooper 6 Rescue Helicopter and Talbot County Airport Paramedic Open House. The Rubber Chicken Drop is great fun – the warbird pilots slide open their canopies and with precision toss out a sponsored rubber chicken. The sponsor with the closest bird to target (airport manager’s truck) will get a prize and bragging rights for a year. The Airport Café offers great food and a variety of airplanes are on display.
- Academy Art Museum Craft Show – juried artists are welcomed to the Museum to display and sell their art – from paintings to clothing, jewelry, furniture, handbags, dolls, glass, home décor, and more. Artists represent the nation and are the best in their craft. Food service provided at the Museum.
- OysterFest - November - Come celebrate the Bay oyster with live music, great food, family activities, skipjack and buyboat rides, oyster aquaculture and restoration demonstrations, oyster tonging, and cooking demonstrations.
- Waterfowl Festival – (2nd Weekend of November) - hosts more than 400 artists from across the nation working in all mediums of art which is displayed across the town of Easton. Buses transport attendees to venues and local vendors are set up throughout the down town with seafood and other foods, live music, Retriever competitions, national duck and goose calling contests and much more. Artists are hand selected and are the best in their field.
- Festival of Trees – (Sat-Tue, after Thanksgiving) – The festival itself features more than 60 trees each decorated in a different theme. Live music throughout the festival – lunch can be enjoyed at the Tidewater Inn where the festival is held. The festival runs the Saturday through Tuesday after Thanksgiving day.
Holly Ridge Farm Equestrian Center – Supporting a concentrated effort in Eco Tourism, they are offering special rates and packages for groups that would like to find alternative activities that leave a low carbon footprint. The farm offers extensive trail riding, survival training, riding lessons and the only Mustang (wild horse) tour in Maryland. Actually, most of the horses on the property are Mustangs, bought wild off the plains from the Bureau of Land Management. They have a 194-acre facility boasting an indoor arena, all wooded trails, 2 full stables and a brand new fully equipped activities center. www.hollyridgefarm.com
- Pork in the Park Barbeque Festival (April )
- Poodle Club Dog Show (April )
- Autumn Wine Festival (October )
Worcester County/Ocean City
The Casino at Ocean Downs is open outside of Ocean City with 800 slot machines.
- Ravens Roost (May) – Baltimore Ravens parade and the NFL Ravens paint the town Purple, live remotes, coach Harbaugh and players in town.
- OC Air Show (June)
- Dew Tour (June)
- Hampton Inn Suites-Ocean City – 113 rooms
Roads and Rails Museum – Founded by David Burroughs, Roads & Rails Museum celebrates historic automobiles and railroads. The “Rails” museum houses one of the largest miniature world model train displays in the country. The “Road” museum houses 16 vintage cars from the 1950’s and includes large gift shop. The train side of the museum will feature one the nation’s largest model railroad collections, larger than the Choo Choo Barn. 200 N. East St. Frederick, Tel: 301-624-5526, firstname.lastname@example.org,
The Frederick Visitor Center - site of the former Frederick Spoke Factory, the center capitalizes on Frederick's location at the hub of a network of highways that fan out like the spokes of a wheel, connecting many of Frederick County's attractions and natural and cultural resources. Exhibit design elements in the building and exhibits also echo this theme. Guests can see the "big picture" of all Frederick County has to offer when they view the new orientation film, A Turn of the Wheel. With its own motorcoach pull-off out front and spacious restrooms, the new Visitor Center is ready and waiting to welcome groups to Frederick. 151 S. East Street, Frederick, Tel: 301-600-4047, www.fredericktourism.org/visitor-center
The Gaithersburg Community Museum B&O Railroad Station features a fully operational model railroad.
The Fillmore Silver Spring brings a dynamic, first-class music, entertainment, and community use venue to downtown Silver Spring. With a capacity of 2,000, they will offer an array of diverse live music programming and will join the American Film Institute and Discovery Communications as cornerstones of the neighborhood’s exciting, up-and-coming arts and entertainment district. http://fillmoresilverspring.com
The Inter-County Connector (ICC or MD Route 200) is a new 18-mile toll road that provides easy access between I-270 and I-95, avoiding the Capital Beltway. Vehicles must have E-Z Pass, as there are no toll booths.
- Hilton Garden Inn-Rockville – 112 rooms
- Homewood Suites-Rockville - 87 rooms
- Hilton Garden Inn-Silver Spring – 107 rooms
Prince George’s County
Christmas on the Potomac, a 45-day celebration of entertainment, activities and fun. The signature event ICE, has been named one of ABA’s Top 100 Events in North America for 2012. www.christmasonthepotomac.com
The Sunset Room at National Harbor is a 12,000-square foot banquet facility is being renovated. Wolfgang Puck is the exclusive caterer.
Red Eye Grill -opened.
Tanger Outlets - a 350,000-square foot outlet center at National Harbor. The Tanger Outlet center housing outlet designer and name-brand stores.
The National Children’s Museum - Sesame Street is teaming up to create exhibits and bring Big Bird and Elmo to the museum. The Sesame Street characters will serve as virtual guides to the museum for young children who visit. They will also be included in a new Early Learners gallery and a planned international gallery.
- Residence Inn-Landover - 96 rooms
- Staybridge Suites-Greenbelt – 188 rooms
Calvert Marine Museum Maritime History Gallery adds new exhibits.
- Hilton Garden Inn-Waldorf – 130 rooms
St. Mary’s County
- Island Inn & Suites / Bar and Crab House is officially part of the Ascend Collection, a network of historic, boutique and unique hotels that gives an authentic, local experience. It was designed specifically for people who appreciate an upscale hotel with a strong local flair. Member hotels share a passion for delivering attentive service to guests seeking a more experimental travel experience. And since the properties are independently owned and associated with Choice Hotels, guests get the peace of mind that comes with a national brand.
- Home2 Suites – 100 rooms
- Comfort Inn-Lexington Park – 45 rooms
Antietam Weekend at Antietam National Battlefield – Sept
Discovery Station - the first phase of this new exhibit: The Civil War Trains Exhibit. Discovery Station creates exciting hands-on learning experiences that stimulate a curiosity for discovery, exploration and further investigation by children and adults to foster life-long learning. The hands-on museum is also home to the Hagerstown Aviation Museum's exhibition of memorabilia, and historical and interactive displays. Some of the displays include a NASA and Space Telescope exhibit, and a C&O Canal Exhibit. Tel: 301-790-0076, www.discoverystation.org.
- Courtyard by Marriott-Hagerstown – 96 rooms
Maryland Seafood Festivals - Dozens of seafood festivals will be held throughout Maryland this summer and continue through November. Festivals range in size and diversity from St. Mary’s County Oyster Festival in Leonardtown to the Annual Tawes Crab and Clam bake in Crisfield. Festivals can be found from Annapolis to Crisfield, from Havre De Grace to Solomons Island and many places in between. Included in the list is a directory of fee fishing farms so anglers can catch their own fish and have their own festivals! www.marylandseafood.org