Search Results for Baltimore

Why Go to Baltimore? Well, I’ll Tell Ya!

Baltimore Harbor

Baltimore Harbor

When I first was told I was going to Baltimore, the first question that came to mind was, What do I do in Baltimore?  Well, what I found out was there is a TON to do in the city and I barely got to scratch the surface on this two day visit.  Here are all the things that I didn’t get to do, but are on the top of my list for when I return (in no particular order):

  • Come back during crab season and have a true Crab Feast!
  • Go to the American Visionary Art Museum when it is open
  • Check out Canton
  • See the manuscript of the Star Spangled Banner at the Maryland Historical Society
  • Eat in Little Italy
  • Lunch at the Lexington Market
  • Spend an evening gulping beer at Brewer’s Art Brewery
  • Check out the National Aquarium
  • Grab a bite at the Sip & Bite Diner
  • See an Orioles game at Camden Yards and a Ravens game too!

I’m sure even this doesn’t cover it all either.

Baltimore is a really interesting city and I really dug getting to know it better.  It’s a town with little frills …

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Best Jokes by the Southwest Airlines Attendant on My Flight Back from Baltimore

One of the flight attendants on my flight back from Baltimore was HI-larious!!  I wish I had time to record his impromptu hijinks, but I did jot them down.  Here are his 3 best jokes:

  • During the safety routine: “In case we have to make a water landing… swim.”
  • “I hope you enjoy your 17 hour flight to Maui – oops!  Wrong flight.  Who want’s to go to Maui, though?”
  • While taxiing to the gate in Atlanta he sang to his Valentine, Southwest Airlines, to the tune of “Keep Your Hands to Yourself” by the Georgia Satellites.  Funny AND fitting.

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Southwest Airlines Feels the LUV on Valentine’s Day, and So Do I

SW Vday TicketSW Vday hearts

They do!

They do!

As I enter Baltimore Airport’s Southwest Airlines Terminal, I saw that they had Valentine’s Day in full effect!  Check out the ticket counter and even in the airplane!  Again, it is another way in which Southwest is different from other airlines.  They also did some special stuff on the flight this time – more on that later.

Anyway, it is hard to not feel the love (or LUV) in this kind of atmosphere and it made me want to make sure that I also spread the love today.  So, here it goes:

Happy Valentine’s Day to my beautiful and wonderful girlfriend Elissa.  I am one lucky guy to be with a woman as amazing as you are.


Me :)

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Jordan and Christine Show Me Baltimore’s Many Sides

First and Franklin Church

First and Franklin Church: 250 years of progressiveness

When I went out to Federal Hill tonight, I met up with my good friends, Jordan and Christine who I haven’t seen in years.  They joined me for dinner and then we walked around the neighborhood looking for a drink.  Unfortunately, Baltimore kind of closes down on Monday nights and the places we checked out were closed.  Tragically, this included a bar called Illusions that is all about magic and magic shows.  Maybe next time…

So, instead we just walked around Federal Hill and they drove me around the less touristy areas of the city.  The highlights of the tour included The Block, which is not our taste, but is something to see.  It is one city block dedicated to the art of adult performing arts.  It really just comes out of nowhere and is kitschy as you could imagine.  Obviously, this is for a very particular crowd, which was not us.  This was strictly a driving tour.

We ended up in Mount Vernon at a bar called Grand …

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Max’s Taphouse and Ryleigh’s Oyster in Baltimore Bring the Goods

Max's ext

Max’s Taphouse in Fell’s Point is beer snob heaven sans the snobbery.  This place is arguably the go-to beer destination for any beer lover visiting Baltimore.  It was recommended to me by some of the commenters here as well as by a number of locals (including bartenders at other pubs!).  And despite its reputation as a beer connoisseur paradise, Max’s has a very laid back feel.

The core of this place is its 102 beers on tap and the longest bottle list I have ever seen.  The bartender, Mike, a living beer encyclopedia, could tell me anything I needed to know about all the choices.  And for all you beer snobs out there, every President’s Day Weekend, Max’s hold a Belgian Beerfest that they take weeks to prep and stock for.  They have 100 Belgians on tap and over 200 bottles.  It is no joke.  Oh if I could stay for 5 more days!

Federal Hill is one of the older neighborhoods of Baltimore and is a food and nightlife hotspot.  It is undeniably Baltimorian.  Once I got there, I …

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Too Much Baltimore to Talk About and Too Little Time

Hi everyone!  I’m packing up and about the head to the Airport.  I have so much to talk about from the second half of my day about Baltimore yesterday and not enough time to post it all before packing my stuff up.  Look for the continued adventures later today.

Here’s a preview of some of what is to come:

  • I’ll tell you about Max’s in Fell’s Point which is one of the best beer bars in the country.
  • There a whole bit about Federal Hill and finally eating some crab cakes!
  • The story of hanging out with my friends from Baltimore, Jordan and Christine, and their insider info on the city and some places to check out that I would not really call “touristy” ;)
  • Some wrap ups about Baltimore and the Southwest Experience.

See you then!

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Fell’s Point is Olde Towne with Hip Spots

Fell's PtFell’s Point is one of the older areas of Baltimore’s harbor area.  I spent a lot of my afternoon walking around there because I heard so many locals talking about it when I asked them about places to go in Baltimore.  I also had some of you guys suggest the area in the Comments earlier, so I decided to take you up on it!

This is a really cool part of town.  Note the cobblestone roads.  It is the first thing you’ll notice about the area., but this is in no way a mainly historic area.  Instead, you’ll see it is a popular hang out point for Baltimore’s, for lack of a better word, hipster crowd.  Don’t let that turn you off, though.  Baltimore’s hipsters are way more down to earth than what you normally think of when you hear that term.

Sal's counterI first stopped in the Broadway Market.  It is an old-style market that now host a series of restaurants in an open space.  Mostly, there is just bar seating.  It’s like you are in the kitchen with the restaurants.  There is a Korean Fusion Place, …

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My Tragic Mistimed Visit to the American Visionary Art Museum and the Edgar Allan Poe Fiasco

AVAM ext This afternoon’s experience was weird to say the least.  It began as I went to visit the American Visionary Art Museum, a museum dedicated solely to the art of undiscovered artists.  I heard it was a real treasure of Baltimore and I was stoked to see it.  It was way more than I expected it to be.  Click on this thumbnail to the left to see the entryway in its full glory.  It is made entirely of broken mirrors, and, yes, the bus is too, and also yes, that is a motorcycle statue above the doorway.  On top of that, there is a tree made of mirror shards out front .  How freakin’ cool is this place?!  I walked up to the door filled with anticipation…

And, of course, it was closed on Mondays…  Fail on my part.

Here’s where my day took an interesting turn.  Baltimore is known as Edgar Allan Poe’s hangout back in the 1800’s.  I didn’t think I had time to visit any of the Poe stuff here because it is kind of off the beaten path, but now I had the time.  For a literature nerd such as …

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Fort McHenry’s Video Presentation Finale

The Fort McHenry Museum has a video presentation, which is full of over-the-top elements.  Most of the movie is a dramatic recreation of the Battle of Baltimore and of Key’s moment of inspiration for “The Star Spangled Anthem.”  It even has special lighting effects in the viewing area during battle scenes!

Nothing compares, though, to the epic finale.  Check it out:

Ft McHenry Finale

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Fort McHenry is Full of American Historical Goodness

Fort McHenry sign

Fort McHenry in Baltimore is the sight of the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812.  We remember it best as Francis Scott Key’s inspriation for the national anthem, “The Star Spangled Banner.”  Fort McHenry’s museum is full of really cool interactive exhibits about the battle, the war, and the song.  There are different touchscreen kiosks that are exceptionally informative and you can really learn a lot about this piece of American History.  I like me some history now and again, so I found all this stuff more fascinating than I thought I would.

So, here are my top 5 tidbits that I didn’t know about the “Star Spangled Banner,” Francis Scott Key, and the War of 1812 that I learned at Fort McHenry:

5.  Francis Scott Key knew that the phrase “the land of the free” was hypocritical because of slavery and put it in the anthem to emphasize freedom, but he owned slaves and spoke out against Abolitionists.

4.  The War of 1812 was really convoluted and had a number of causes.  A lot …

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