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Sizzlin Calendar

Art and Culture

Deanna Staffo
Deanna Staffo

Historical

Events

Fells Point Walking Tours, call for times, starts at 812 S. Ann St., (410) 675-6750, www.preservationsociety.com. A bar crawl is not the only excuse to walk around historic Fells Point. Put on your walking shoes and scare up some ghosts in haunted houses, soak in the history of Baltimore’s early seafaring people, or learn about the lives of Baltimore’s immigrants who inspired the ethnic festival season. The real estate minded will want to check out the 18th century Robert Long House and Garden, which happens to be the oldest surviving urban residence in town.

National Historic Tours, Union Station and other points, Washington, (202) 832-9800, www.trolleytours.com Let the trolley do the walking for you, as you check out more sites than you ever could on foot. The more than 100 historic places you’ll see include Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial, Georgetown, Washington National Cathedral, the White House, and the museums of the Smithsonian Institution. Hop off the trolley along the way for more than a streetside view.

West Virginia Days Celebration, June 17-19, Davis, W. Va., (304) 866-4121, www.canaanresort.com. Re-enactments of the Civil War mark the birthday of the state and bring art and food vendors out of the West Virginia woodwork.

Chautauqua, 7 p.m. July 8-11, Cecil Community College Cultural Center, 1 Seahawk Drive, North East, (410) 771-0652, free. Entertainers and scholars embrace their inner historian and bring the past to life, acting out dialogues as Benjamin O. Davis, George Orwell, Margaret Bourke-White, and good old Honest Abe.

Battle of Bladensburg, Aug. 13, Riversdale House Museum, 4811 Riverdale Road, Riverdale Park, (301) 864-0420. For the past 10 years, re-enactors have been simulating this War of 1812 battle, while Rosalie Stier Calvert, mistress of Riversdale, looks on. It’s not all about bloody soldiers though; there are 19th-century children’s games, museum tours, and refreshments.

Places

Antique Chesapeake Carousel, Watkins Regional Park, 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro, (301) 218-6700, www.pgparks.com/-places/parks/watkins.html. Let the other kids stand in line for the latest gravity-defying roller coasters this summer. This old standby has been delighting riders since the early 1900s. And it won’t make your stomach flip—at least it’s not designed for that.

Ballestone Manor House, 1935 Back River Neck Road, Essex, (410) 887-0218. This Federal-style building features several displays of Early American art and furnishings from 1780 to 1880. It’s only open in the summer, so make a trip before it closes up again for winter.

Banneker-Douglass Museum, 84 Franklin St., Annapolis, (410) 216-6180, www.marylandhistoricaltrust.net/bdm.html, free. Named after Benjamin Banneker and Frederick Douglass, this museum is dedicated to preserving Maryland’s rich African-American history through artifacts, photos, African art, documents, and books. Guided tours are available for groups.

Brunswick Railroad Museum, 40 W. Potomac St., Brunswick, (301) 834-7100, www.brrm.net. Life didn’t always speed by like the Acela (when it was actually working). Conduct a little trip to this museum telling the story of the town the B&O Railroad helped build. There’s a giant interactive scale model railroad and a hands-on kids center, not to mention artifacts and exhibits.

Cannonball House, 118 Front St., Lewes, Del. (302) 645-7670, www.historiclewes.org. Built in 1760, this house once belonged to Gilbert McCracken. When the British bombarded Lewes in 1813, McCracken and his son, Henry, helped defend Lewes from their house. They were successful despite the cannonball that hit the house and etched its name in history.

Colonial Williamsburg, between Norfolk and Richmond, Williamsburg, Va., (800) 447-8679, www.history.org. Childhood wouldn’t be complete without wearing a tri-corner hat and shooting a rifle cap gun. Pick up those key colonial accessories and treat the little ones to a few history lessons as you all enjoy the colonial experience.

Delaware Archaeology Museum, 316 S. Governor’s Highway, Dover, Del., (302) 739-4266, www.destatemuseums.org/default.shtml, free. Also known as Meeting House Gallery I, the Archaeology Museum holds an interesting array of found objects from Native American burial sites and the days of our early settlers.

Eubie Blake NAtional Jazz Institute and Cultural Center, 847 N. Howard St., (410) 225-3130, www.eubieblake.org. This museum is dedicated to the living tradition of Baltimore jazz. Celebrate local legends Billie Holiday and Eubie Blake with dance classes, open mic nights, and live concerts by the Eubie Blake Legacy Band and others.

Evergreen House, 4545 N. Charles St., (410) 516-0341, www.jhu.edu/historichouses. The former owner of this 48-room Italianate house stipulated in his will that it remain open to “lovers of music, art, and beautiful things.” If you fit that description, enjoy.

Farm Museum, 500 S. Center St., Westminster, (410) 876-2667, http://ccgov.carr.org/farm-mus/, $3, seniors and ages under 18 $2, kids 6 and under free. After a tour of the premises, including a look at a one-room schoolhouse, broom shop, wagon shed, and more, relax while enjoying the museum’s new fishpond or croquet lawn.

F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald Burial Place, St. Mary’s Church, Veirs Mill Road and Route 355, Rockville, (301) 762-0096. Although the “Great Gatsby” author died in Hollywood, he’s buried here with that wacky Zelda and some of his other relatives. If you have the patience for D.C. traffic, this is a must-see for literary buffs.

Gettysburg National Military Park, 97 Taneytown Road, Gettysburg, Pa., (717) 334-1124, www.nps.gov/gett. Even if you hate the idea of leaving Baltimore, this 50-mile excursion is worth making an exception. Site of the largest and bloodiest battle of the Civil War, it’s hard not to feel the history in the air. Tour the battlefield park on your own or with a guide then stop by the Visitor Center for some souvenirs.

Governor Ross Mansion and Plantation, N. Pine St., Seaford, Del. (302) 628-9500, www.ohwy.com/de/g/goromapl.htm. This example of Italian villa architecture gives you a glimpse into life on a 1850s-era plantation. Tour the only registered slave quarters in Delaware then check out the granary, carriage house, and gift shop.

Hammond-Harwood House, 19 Maryland Ave., Annapolis, (410) 263-4683, www.hammondharwoodhouse.org. This ornate Georgian house represents the swanky side of colonial life, better known as the Golden Age of Annapolis. Built for wealthy tobacco plantation owner Mathias Hammond in 1774, today it’s full of mid-18th and early 19th-century paintings and furnishings.

Historical Society of Talbot County, 25 S. Washington St., Easton, (410) 822-0773, www.hstc.org. There is something for you in Easton, really there is. Check out this collection of over 10,000 artifacts, archives of personal papers and manuscripts, and more than 100,000 photographs, all teaching us a thing or two about the Eastern Shore.

Museum of Rural Life, 12 N. Second St., Denton, (410) 479-2055, free. A chance for the rurally-challenged to learn all about life on the farm, thanks to the people at the Caroline County Historical Society.

Mount Vernon, near Alexandria, Va., (703) 780-2000, www.mountvernon.org. The first commander-in-chief’s mansion features a variety of things George and Martha Washington actually owned, plus other 18th century objects and reproductions, not to mention his tomb nearby.

National Archives, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, (866) 272-6272, www.archives.gov. Wade through the documents on your own or sign up for a behind-the-scenes guided tour of the world’s largest archival facility. Even if you don’t know what you’re looking for, what you find will have “piece of history” written all over it.

Old St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 7579 Sandy Bottom Road, Chestertown, www.stpaul-kent.org. Built in 1713 to replace an even older building, this is the earliest religious structure in Kent County, and represents one of the 30 Anglican parishes established in Maryland in 1692. Stop by for a spiritual experience or just to see the grave of actress Tallulah Bankhead.

One-Room Schoolhouse, beside Christ Church on Broomes Island Road, Port Republic, (410) 586-0161. Air conditioning wasn’t an option when this school opened more than 100 years ago. So quit those stories of walking up hill both ways to school. It really wasn’t that bad, now was it?

Prabhupada’s Palace and City of Gold, Moundsville, W. Va., (304) 843-1812, www.palaceofgold.com., $3-6. This temple —referred to as “America’s Taj Mahal—was built in honor of one of the bigwigs in Krishna Consciousness, Srila Prabhupada. Apparently he liked lots and lots of bright, shiny things.

Pope John Paul II Cultural Center, 3900 Harewood Road, N.E., Washington, (202) 635-5400, www.jp2cc.org. In conjunction with the districtwide celebration of the National World War II Memorial, the exhibit Faith of Our Fathers and Mothers: The Role of Faith in the Greatest Generation promises to show inspirational reproductions of military chaplains and saints.

Poplar Hill Mansion, 117 Elizabeth St., Newtown Historic District, Salisbury, (410) 749-1776. As you tour this 200-year-old Federal-style manor house, keep your eyes open for Sara, the ghost of a slave girl who died in a fire here. They say she’s friendly, but maybe you’ll catch her on an off day.

Queenstown Colonial Courthouse, 100 Del Rhodes St., Queenstown, (410) 827-7646. This one-room structure has been updated since it was constructed in 1708, but portions of it are the real thing, including the horizontal oak wall sheathing. As the first courthouse in Queen Anne’s County, it has many stories to tell about prisoners who ended up in the stocks, whipping post, or worse, the hangman’s noose.

Historic Savage Mill, 8600 Foundry St., Savage, (800) 788-6455, www.savagemill.com. Before it was a bustling marketplace, this building churned out some of Maryland’s finest textiles, including canvas used for ship sails and Hollywood movie backdrops. Take a guided tour for more history, or buy something historic from one of the 265 antique dealers.

Historic Senator Theatre, 5904 York Road, Baltimore, (410) 435-8338, www.senator.com. Even if you’re watching the latest big-budget blockbuster, sinking in to the velvety seats with a bucket of hot, buttery corn at this Baltimore treasure somehow feels more like a night at the theater, doesn’t it?

Sotterley Plantation, Route 245, Hollywood, (800) 681-0850, www.sotterley.com. This Tidewater Plantation standing proudly on the banks of the Patuxent River was once home to one of the largest communities of enslaved African-Americans in the Southern Maryland region. Beyond the manor house, there’s a slave cabin, customs warehouse, formal garden, and corn crib, whatever that is.

Sultana, 105 S. Cross St., Chestertown, (410) 778-5954, www.schoonersultana.com. Tour the Chesapeake Bay in a replica of a Boston-built merchant vessel that carried sailors in the 18th century. It’s one thing to look at the ship, but sailing on it really takes you back in time.

USS Constellation, 301 E. Pratt St., (410) 539-1797, www.constellation.org, free-$7.50. This floating museum is a must-board as you stroll through the Inner Harbor this summer. It made its way to Baltimore 50 years ago, but not after a rich life of its own — including a stint as an anti-slavery ship in the 1850s.

U.S. Naval Academy, Armel-Leftwich Visitor Center, 52 King George St., Annapolis, (410) 263-6933, www.navyonline.com. After you fight for parking, stop by the Visitor Center for a guided tour and featured exhibits. This summer look for John Paul Jones Day, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the return of this naval hero’s body to the Academy. Keep in mind: You can flirt with the midshipmen all you want, but you still need a photo ID to get in to the gates.

Washington Monument, Charles and Monument streets, Baltimore, (410) 396-0929. It may look like just another marble column to you, but it took nearly 15 years to erect this 178-foot-high monument to our first president. For $1, you can climb to the top and take in an amazing view of the city.

White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., Washington, (202) 456-7041, www.whitehouse.gov. If procrastination prevented you from getting your name on the tour group list, check out the president’s pad through the wrought-iron gates outside. Just watch what you say. Someone might be listening.

Wright’s Chance, 119 S. Commerce St., Centreville, (410) 604-2100. This 18th-century early plantation house features collections of Chippendale and Hepplewhite furniture.

Sizzlin Summer 2005

Hot Topic City Paper’s 2005 Sizzlin’ Summer Guide

Not So Bad Boys Riding Along with the Inner Harbor’s Bicycle Cops | By Gadi Dechter

Something in the Air Ten Reasons To Hold Your Breath This Summer | By Erin Sullivan

Maritime Tragedies Or, Bummers Downy Euchin' | By Emily Flake

Naked Hunch Searching for Assateague’s Clothing-Optional Beach | By Rebecca Alvania

The Funnel Cake Effect A Look Back at Festivals From Baltimore’s Past | By Christina Royster-Hemby

Summer in the City Seasons of Change Growing Up in Edmondson Villge | By Laurence Bass

How’s It Vending Baltimore’s Vendors Tell You What It’s Really Like to Hock Your Wares in the Hot Sun | By Auriane de Rudder and Sarah Estes

Unpasturized Inside The Not-So-Simple Life of a Teenage Cowgirl | By Jill Yesko

For What Ales Ya City Paper’s Third Annual Search For the Coldest Beer in Baltimore

Posted 5/25/2005

EVENTS

Afternoon Tea at Historic Oakland, fourth Thursday of every month, Historic Oakland Manor, 5430 Vantage Point Road, Columbia, (410) 730-4801, www.historic-oakland.com, $18.90. Have a planned tea date in our favorite planned community and lift a pinky in celebration of James Rouse, Columbia’s creator. Reservations are required, Preakness-style fancy hats are not.

Bethesda Art Walk, 6-9 p.m. second Friday of every month, Bethesda Metro Center, www.bethesda.org, free. See the best of 14 Bethesda art galleries and tone those legs for summer while you do it. And if you get tired? Eh, take the trolley, running especially for the event.

Spice It Up, 7-11 p.m. June 3, Baltimore Clayworks, 5707 Smith Ave., (410) 578-1919, www.baltimoreclayworks.org, $25-$30, ages 12 and under $12-$15. If the availability of spicy food doesn’t make you break a sweat, the dancing certainly will. Come check out what Baltimore Clayworks has to offer, potwise.

Art in the Park, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. June 4, grounds of Westminster City Hall, intersections of Locust, Longwell, and Key streets, Westminster, (410) 848-7272. Hands-on art experiences combine with the usual vendor-and-craft-sales-party that defines the outdoor summer festival.

At Play on the Bay, June 4, Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St Michael’s, (410) 745-2916, $10, kids $5. Celebrating the museum’s largest exhibition ever, this grand opening brings restored boats, artifacts, and photographs to the Maritime Museum’s Navy Point waterfront location.

Steam Day, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. June 4, Fire Museum of Maryland, 1301 York Road, Lutherville, www.firemuseummd.org, $6, seniors and firefighters $5, kids under 12 $4. While the museum invites all of us to bring along our steam models and/or horse drawn apparatuses, we’re sure they’ll be happy to see those of us arriving in cars as well.

Celebration of Textiles, June 4-5, the Textile Museum, 2320 S St. N.W., Washington, (202) 667-0441, www.textilemuseum.org, $5 suggested donation. Invite your favorite fibers major from MICA and loom it up.

23rd Annual Piscataway Indian Festival and Pow Wow, June 4-5, American Indian Cultural Center, 16816 Country Lane, Waldorf, (301) 372-1932, www.piscatawayindians.org. While you aren’t allowed to bring booze or firearms, we think the very mention of such a ban makes this Pow Wow sound like a hell of a party. Besides, when’s the last time you met a member of the Piscataway who didn’t know how to get down and have a good time?

Mountain Heritage Arts and Crafts Fair, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. June 10-12, Jobcore Road, Sam Michael’s Park, W. Va., (800) 624-0577, www.jeffersoncounty.com, $6, kids $3. Once again, food and crafts unite as a summer theme, this time in West Virginia. Hit up the web site for discounted admission.

Columbia Festival of the Arts, June 10-19, Columbia Town Center, Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia, (410) 715-3044, www.columbiafestival.com. For nine whole days, flamenco dancers, jazz performances, theater productions, artistic workshops, and more combine to make Columbia not just another suburb.

Flag Day Family Festival, noon-4 p.m. June 11, National Museum of American History, the National Mall, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue N.W., Washington, (202) 633-3129, www.americanhistory.si.edu, free. Listen to Francis Scott Key’s explanation of the National Anthem and represent all American-style with the Fifes and Drums of Yorktown.

Antique Show, June 25 and Aug. 6, 110 Shipcarpenter St., Lewes, Del., (302) 645-7670, www.historiclewes.org, $2, ages 12 and under free. Anyone who’s visited Lewes knows it’s Delaware’s best-kept secret. Come get acquainted with their oldest tradition and bring your youngsters.

Enchanted Summer Day, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. June 25, Winterthur Museum, Route 52 (Kennett Pike), Winterthur, Del., (800) 448-3883, www.winterthur.org, $15, seniors and students $13, kids 11 and under $5. With dancing, storytelling, and fairy-fables galore, this is one for the whole family. However, if your child suffers from fear of clowns or other costumed crazies, you may want to prep them for the fairies that will inevitably be running about.

Canal Day, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. June 26, South Chesapeake City, (410) 885-2415, $5. The folks behind the C&O Canal Museum make the great ravine even more inviting by lining it with vendors and arts booths, and adding music to the mix.

Summer Music on the Portico, June 29, July 27, and Aug. 24, Riversdale House Museum, 4811 Riverdale Road, Riverdale, (301) 864-0420, free. Offering free music and an optional grilled dinner for a fee, the museum supplies everything you need for an evening outdoors. Well, minus the bug spray and picnic blankets.

Needleart 2005, 3-7 p.m. July 15, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. July 16-24, Montpelier Mansion, 9401 Montpelier Drive, Laurel, (301) 953-1376, www.pgparks.com, $6, seniors $5, kids $3. Fans of needlework choose from a wide array of pieces with the People’s Choice Award. Other prizes and awards are distributed by judges.

Art in the Park, July 16-17, Deep Creek Lake State Park, Discovery Center, Garrett County, (301) 387-0002, www.deepcreektimes.com/artinthepark, free. Local musicians and artists invite you by car or by boat to enjoy this creekside extravaganza.

Annapolis Art Walk, 5-9 p.m. Aug. 18, 215 Main St., Annapolis, (410) 267-7077, www.artinannapolis.com, free. So what if nude paintings don’t get ya hot, we’re sure the walking tour of 18 galleries won’t fail to get your heart pumping the old fashioned way. Artists perform live demonstrations throughout the tour, crafting and molding pieces before your very eyes.

 

PLACES

Academy Art Museum, 106 South St., Easton, (410) 822-2787, www.art-academy.org. Located on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, the Academy Art Museum offers the area’s finest when it comes to the visual and performing arts. Check out their guest curators and educational programs as well.

African-American Heritage Society Museum, 7485 Crain Highway, LaPlata, (301) 843-0371, www.potomacheritage.org. Highlighting the life and history of African Americans from Southern Maryland and Charles County, the museum’s artifacts and documents concerning slavery make up the historical exhibits.

American Dime Museum, 1808 Maryland Ave., (410) 230-0263, www.dimemuseum.net, $5, ages 7-12 $3, ages 6 and under free. OK, we’re all freaks here, and this is by far Baltimore’s freakiest little museum, “a world where the strange is typical, the bizarre happens every day, and the amazing is the least you should expect.” Bring it.

American Indian Cultural Center and Piscataway Indian Museum, 16816 Country Lane, Waldorf, (301) 372-1932. Dedicated to the Piscataway Indians, indigenous to Southern Maryland and happy hosts of a kick-ass annual Pow Wow celebrating their heritage.

American Visionary Art Museum, 800 Key Highway, (410) 244-1900, www.avam.org, $11-$4, ages 4 and under free. One look at the shimmering and neon-lit outside of the museum and anyone’s interest is sparked. So come on in and gain newfound respect for all the self-schooled artists and their unique works.

Andy Warhol Museum, 117 Sandusky St., Pittsburgh, Pa., (412) 237-8300, www.thewarhol.org, $6-$10. Make a pilgrimage to Pittsburgh and worship at the shrine to the genius Andy Warhol. And this summer it’s also the place to worship Baltimore’s favorite pervert John Waters with two exhibits that give the mustached man his props: John Waters: Change of Life and John Waters Curates Andy’s “Porn.” Dirty.

Art Gallery of Fells Point, 1716 Thames St., (410) 327-1272, www.fellspointgallery.org, free. Featuring Maryland-themed paintings and local artists, the Fells Point gallery houses one or two crab portraits, but also explores an experimental side with the work of Maria Cavacos, Kristin Sweedler, and Martinez/Applegate. Not that we have anything against crabs.

Baltimore Civil War Museum/President Street Station, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, 601 President St., (410) 385-5188, www.mdhs.org, $4, ages 13-17, students, and seniors $3, children 12 and under free. Our 2001 winner of Baltimore’s Best Building, this train-station-turned-Civil-War -museum pays some serious homage to the first bloodshed of the Civil War, which by the way happened right here on Pratt Street.

Baltimore Clayworks Gallery, 5706 Smith Ave., Baltimore, (410) 578-1919, www.baltimoreclayworks.org, free. Mount Washington’s nonprofit one-stop-shop for all things clay. Observe someone else’s work, or take a class and make your own.

Baltimore Maritime Museum, piers 3 and 5, Inner Harbor, 802 S. Caroline St., (410) 396-3453, www.baltomaritimemuseum.org, $5-$6, ages 6-14 $3. We’re pet lovers here, and we love the Maritime Museum’s Mascots: Seagoing Dogs of the Navy and Coast Guard. Dedicated to the dogs on board of a variety of vessels from 1880s-1950s, the exhibit is only outdone by the presence of the Torsk, a toothy and intimidating submarine.

Baltimore Museum of Art, 10 Art Museum Drive, (410) 396-7100, www.artbma.org, free-$7. Housing a variety of exhibitions, an artsy gift shop, a brunch-worthy restaurant, and an appointment-preferred library, the Baltimore Museum of Art pretty much knows it kicks the competition’s asses. This summer check out The Essence of Line: French Drawings from Ingres to Degas exhibit.

Baltimore Museum of Industry, 1415 Key Highway, (410) 727-4808, www.thebmi.org, $7. The Museum of Industry walks you through the Industrial Revolution Baltimore-style, with displays about canning companies and banks, the invention of Noxzema, and even revealing who made the first disposable bottle cap. Not convinced? Find out Baltimore’s role in the invention and upkeep of WWII bombers.

Alzacar Gallery, Baltimore School of Arts, 712 Cathedral St., (410) 347-1478. Come see what highschoolers are capable of and, if you’re lucky, score a masterpiece while it’s still cheap.

Baltimore Streetcar Museum, 1901 Falls Road, (410) 547-0264, www.baltimore-md.com, $6, seniors and kids $3, ages 3 and under free. Representin’ transportation and kick-ass conductorettes, the Streetcar Museum will let you ride on their historic cars all damn day if you want. And all for a measly six bucks max.

B’Nai B’rith Klutznick National Jewish Museum, 2020 K St. N.W., Washington, (202) 857-6583, www.bnaibrith.org, $4, ages 12 and under free. The museum houses documents and archives along with art and archeological pieces from biblical times to the present. Advance reservations must be made, so call ahead.

Brandywine Museum, Route 1, Chadds Ford, Pa., (610) 388-2700, www.brandywinemuseum.org, $8, seniors, students, and ages 6-12 $5, ages under 6 free. Located in Hoffman’s Mill, a 19th-century grist mill on the Brandywine river, the museum embraces its surroundings by exhibiting three centuries worth of fantastic art, surpassed only by the museum’s outdoor gardens.

Brannock Maritime Museum, 210 Talbot Ave., Cambridge, (410) 228-6938. Named after author Earl Brannock and his Maritime-illustrator wife, Shirley, this museum is dedicated to preserving the history of the Chesapeake Bay. Only 45 by 80 feet, the collections here are small in size, but rich with great authenticity.

Brunswick Railroad Museum, 40 W. Potomac St., Brunswick, (301) 834-7100, www.brrm.net, $5, seniors $4, kids $2.50, ages 3-5 $1.25, ages under 3 free. Did you used to play with model trains? Do you still play with model trains? The BRRM has one of the East Coast’s largest model trains, and it’s historically accurate. Go ahead, embrace your inner geek.

C.Grimaldi’s Gallery, 523 N Charles St., (410) 539-1080, free. Our 2002 pick for Baltimore’s Best Gallery still sits quietly amongst Charles Street’s shops and restaurants. C.Grimaldi’s hasn’t lost its spark.

Calvert Marine Museum, Route 497, Lusby, (410) 326-2042, www.calvertmarinemuseum.com, $7, seniors $6, ages 5-12 $2, ages under 5 and members free. Focusing on the waters of Southern Maryland, this museum offers a summer concert, a puzzling paleontology exhibit or two, and a nearby oyster house just in case looking at all that sea-stuff makes your tummy grumble.

C&O Canal Museum, Chesapeake City, (410) 885-5622, free. While the canal is truly the attraction here, the C&O museum is the perfect preface for hiking along the historical transportation route. Just do us a favor, try not to hike the whole 184.5-mile stretch in one day, we’ve heard it can lead to cramping.

Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, Mill Street, St. Michaels, (410) 745-2916, www.cbmm.org, $10, seniors $9, kids $5. Whether you’re a fisher, a crabber, a boat-enthusiast, or you just love you some Chesapeake Bay, you’re sure to enjoy this museum’s dedication to the body of water with it’s nine-building wide array of things to see, learn, and even touch.

Contemporary Museum of Art, 100 W. Centre St., (410) 783-5720, www.contemporary.org, donations appreciated. We’re a pretty with-it group of people. We know that Uggs are so last season, and we know where to find up-to-the-minute art, dammit. The Contemporary Museum would be that place.

Corcoran Gallery of Art, 500 17th St. N.W., Washington, (202) 639-1700, www.corcoran.org, $6.95, seniors $4.75, students $3, kids free. Any museum that has architectural genius Frank Gehry working on its new wing has our stamp of approval all over it. Oh yeah, and the art’s great too.

Delaware Art Museum, 800 S. Madison St., Wilmington, Del., (302) 571-9590, www.delart.org, $10, seniors $8, students $5. While the museum will soon be allowing you to surf their entire 12,000-piece collection online, we have to recommend that you go and see their Pre-Raphaelite art and 19th-21st century American art in person. Besides, it’s nice outside. It’ll do ya good to get off the computer.

Delaware Toy and Miniature Museum, 6 Old Barley Mill Road, Wilmington, Del., (302) 427-8697, www.thomes.net/toys. While we know you’re upset that you couldn’t get to this museum’s Tokyo Exhibit, held in the Shinjuku Park Tower in Tokyo last November, we are relived we can still visit their home-base all summer long. Size queens may want to stay home, here it really doesn’t matter.

Dr. Samuel D. Harris National Museum of Dentistry, 31 S. Greene St., (410) 706-0600, www.dentalmuseum.org, $4.50, seniors, students, and ages 7-18 $2.50, kids under 6 and members free. This museum actually has an exhibit called Saliva, a Remarkable Fluid, which is the first part in a series called Your Spitting Image.

Ellicott City B&O Railroad Station Museum, 2711 Maryland Ave., Ellicott City, (410) 461-1945, www.ecbo.org, $5, seniors and students $4, kids $3, ages 3 and under free. Check out the “Oldest Railroad Station in America,” located right smack dab in the middle of Historic Ellicott City, and don’t forget to pick up your Civil War cookbook from the gift shop.

Fire Museum of Maryland, 1301 York Road, Lutherville, (410) 321-7500, www.firemuseummd.org, $6, seniors and firefighters $5, ages 2-12 $4. If there’s one thing all Baltimoreans should educate themselves about, it’s fire. While we can’t all be firefighters, we can spend a day going through the Fire Museum’s audio walking tour of the Great Baltimore Fire of 1904.

Friend Family Association’s National Museum, 261 Maple St., Friendsville, (301) 746-4690, www.friendfamilyassociation.org. Specializing in surname research and genealogy, the Friend Family Association does their damnedest to strengthen family values. Join ‘em for their biennial Friends Gathering mid-July.

Furnace Town Living Heritage Museum, Old Furnace Road, Snow Hill, (410) 632-2032, www.furnacetown.com, $4, kids $2. The interactive folks at Furnace Town bring to life living in the early 19th century. The blacksmith exhibit and the archaeological digs sound like the coolest things to check out, but only because Furnace Town’s Fashion Day for the bonneted took place months ago.

Great Blacks in Wax Museum, 1601 E. North Ave., (410) 563-3404, www.greatblacksinwax.org, $6.80, seniors and college students $5.75, ages 12-17 $4.25, ages 2-11 $3.75. OK, forget that awful movie with Paris Hilton for one second and focus: This house of wax holds diverse sculptured exhibits including figures of cowboy Bill Picket, ancient Egyptian Akhenation, Baltimore local Osborne Payne, and scenes from the Underground Railroad.

Havre de Grace Decoy Museum, 215 Giles St., Havre de Grace, (410) 939-3739. www.decoymuseum.com, $6, seniors $5, ages 9-18 $2, kids and members free. With wooden ducks, seagulls, and pelicans galore, the decoy museum is dedicated to the craft of whittling away at the lifelike tributes. The museum honors decoy masters with pieces by Steve and Lem Ward, Evans McKinney, Bob Litzenberg, Paul Gibson, Charlie Bryan, and more.

Hays House Museum, 324 Kenmore Ave., Bel Air, (410) 838-7691, $3, kids $2. If you thought the ‘80s coming back into style was scary, wait till you see the puffed sleeves available at the Hays House Museum. Hold on to your bonnets and loosen up those corsets, there are some serious fashion faux pas to revel in.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, 7th and Independence avenues S.W., Washington, (202) 357-2700, www.hirshhorn.si.edu, donations accepted. This summer the Hirshhorn continues its reign of excellence in D.C. with Visual Music, an exhibition combining the work of 60 artists and a variety of different media.

Homewood House Museum, 3400 N. Charles St., (410) 516-5589, www.jhu.edu/~hwdhouse/homewood.html, $6, seniors $5, students $3, JHU students, faculty and staff free. The historic Johns Hopkins house staff invites you to join them in honoring not only the tradition in the building itself, but also a variety of exhibits and performances all summer long. Visit the Web site for discounted admission.

Jewish Museum of Maryland, 15 Lloyd St., (410) 732-6400, www.jhsm.org, $8, members free. This summer the Jewish Museum follows the work of Archie Rand with its The Eighteen: Blessings from the Heart of Jewish Worship exhibit, which focuses on Jewish prayer expressed through painting.

Landis Valley Museum, 2451 Kissel Hill Road, Lancaster, Pa., (717) 569-0401, www.landisvalleymuseum.org. $9, seniors $7, ages 6-17 $6, kids under 6 free. A living historical experience dedicated to preserving Pennsylvania German culture. That’s right, folks, we’re talking horses, sheep, churns, and even the occasional loom-lady.

Maryland Art Place, 8 Market Place, Suite 100, (410) 962-8565, www.mdartplace.org, free. Located in Power Plant Live!, Maryland Art Place is neither cheesy nor scary. Young and hip, MAP stays fresh with gallery talks and collaborative projects in conjunction with its modern exhibits.

Maryland Federation of Art Circle Gallery, 18 State Circle, Annapolis, (410) 268-4566, www.mdfedart.org. While just about all of us can get into the Circle Gallery’s block prints and mixed media exhibit, those of you with a special invitation to their Pure Art show featuring pieces from artists with developmental disabilities should count your lucky stars.

Mister Ed’s Elephant Museum, 6019 Chambersburg Road, Orrtanna, Pa., (717) 352-3792, www.mistereds-elephantmuseum.com. If you aren’t planning on visiting Mr. Ed’s this summer, you should. Have your picture taken with the 9-foot-tall Miss Ellie Phunt, and don’t forget to ask Ed about the elephant lamp he picked up in Brazil.

McBride Gallery, 215 Main St., Annapolis, (410) 267-7077, www.mcbridegallery.com, free. The largest art gallery in Maryland’s historic capital city, the McBride Gallery boasts a collection chock-full of still life, Maryland scenes, romantic images, sporting scenes, and much, much more.

Mütter Museum, 19 S. 22nd St., Philadelphia, Pa., (215) 563-3737, ext. 211, www.collphyphil.org, $10, kids, students and seniors $7, ages 6 and under free. Talk about creepy. With over 20,000 objects to observe, the museum boasts fluid-preserved specimens, ancient medical instruments, a new OB-GYN instrument collection, and a special exhibit on conjoined twins. Kinda makes the Dime Museum look like a buncha wussies.

National Air and Space Museum, Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W., Washington, (202) 357-2700, www.nasm.si.edu, free. Sure, we all know about the contributions of the Wright Brothers by now, but can you honestly say you’ve learned all there is to know about the Conquistadores del Cielo? Didn’t think so. Learn it all here.

National Capital Trolley Museum, 1313 Bonifant Road, Colesville, (301) 384-6352, www.dctrolley.org, $3, kids and seniors $2. If only D.C. had expanded its trolley system to Virginia maybe we could all stop complaining about I-495, but alas, trolleys were abandoned by the District in 1959. So leave the Uncle Ben’s jokes at home and indulge in what could have been the Washington D.C. treat.

National Gallery of Art, on the National Mall, Third and Ninth streets at Constitution Avenue N.W., Washington, (202) 737-4215, www.nga.gov, free. With a vast collection of sculptures, French paintings, Matisse cutouts, French and Italian cabinets, and a whole hell of a lot more, the museum’s permanent collection is overshadowed only by its own upcoming summer exhibitions. Check out the Irving Penn: Platinum Prints, but don’t count on getting your Dada on till next year.

National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1250 New York Ave. N.W., (202) 783-5000, Washington, www.nmwa.org, $5, students and seniors $3, ages 18 and under free. Drop your preconceived ideas about women in the arts and absorb some of the unique and underexposed artists the museum has to offer. The summer installation of Women and Blues uses Amalia Amaki’s work to throw girl-power enthusiasts an artistic curveball.

Philadelphia Museum of Art, 26th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, Pa., (215) 763-8100, www.philamuseum.org, $10, seniors, students, and kids $7, members free. With a short extension being added to the Salvador Dali exhibit, you have only a little while left before you’ve missed it. And if you do? We’re big fans of the Chinese snuff bottles and the Indian and Himalayan art available.

Piney Point Lighthouse Park and Museum, Lighthouse Road, Piney Point, (301) 769-2222, website. Preserving the historic importance of the Piney Point lighthouse, the museum’s re-opening offers a new variety of attractions.

Queen Anne’s Museum of Eastern Shore Life, 126 Dulin Clark Road, Centreville, (410) 758-8641, www.mesl.us. Teaching the masses about agricultural and maritime advances in Queen Anne’s, this museum has some serious hometown pride.

Radio and Television Museum, 2608 Mitchellville Road, Bowie, (301) 390-1020, www.radiohistory.org. With special guest appearances from the likes of longtime D.C. radio personality Ed Walker, the museum has lots to offer. The strangest thing available? Tube testing machines . . . just like in the ‘50s.

St. Mary’s Square Museum, 409 St. Mary’s Square, St. Michaels, (410) 745-9561, donations appreciated. Documenting St. Mary’s history and culture, the museum consists of two historic buildings. While one of the buildings is a 19th century colonial home, the other used to be, among other things, a morgue.

Thomas Kinkade Signature Gallery, 101 N. Talbot St., St. Michaels, (410) 745-0253, free. With Kinkage’s art in galleries all over the country, we’re lucky to not travel too far to view some of his life-affirming works of nature.

Tobacco Farming Museum, 16000 Croom Airport Road, Upper Marlboro, (301) 627-6074, $5-$7. In a time when bars, restaurants, and even entire cities are jumping on the non-smoking bandwagon, we turn to the good people at the Tobacco Farming Museum. Here, we’re reminded of the deep historical significance of the industry, and are transported back to the good old days when smoking was, um, good for you?

Top of the World Observation Level and Museum, 401 E. Pratt St., (410) 837-8439, www.bop.org, $2-$4. Way up on the 27th floor of Baltimore’s World Trade Center, the Observation Level boasts not only Baltimore’s best 360-degree view, but also access to some historic Baltimore artifacts.

U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, 100 Raoul Wallenberg Place S.W., Washington, (202) 488-0400, www.ushmm.com, free. With a special 10th anniversary exhibit held through October, the Holocaust Museum continues its reign of excellence and poignancy with Deadly Medicine: Creating the Master Race and Remember the Children: Daniel’s Story, an exhibit for younger audiences that helps explain a serious topic to kids.

Walters Art Museum, 600 N. Charles St., (410) 547-9000, www.thewalters.org, $10, seniors $8, students $6, ages 6-17 $2, kids under 6 free. Composed of three buildings, the Walters is not to be taken lightly. Check out the Hickerman House, if not for the stunning Asian art collection, for the building itself.

Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, 909 S. Shumaker Drive, Salisbury, (410) 742-4988, www.wardmuseum.org. Run amok with wildlife sculptures, paintings, and carvings, this museum puts new meaning into the phrase “flights of fancy.”

Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, City Park, Hagerstown, (301) 739-5727, www.washcomuseum.org, free. A summertime tribute to the Great American Pastime, the exhibit Take Me Out to the Ball Game is one no Orioles fan wants to miss. But watch out, there are some diehard Hagerstown Suns fans sure to be in attendance.

West Virginia Museum of American Glass, Main Avenue and Second Street, Weston, W. Va., (304) 269-5006, www.members.aol.com. Displaying signed Tiffany decorative tiles along with historical decanters, goblets, and paperweights, along with the Whose Sandwich is it Anyway exhibit.

Wye Grist Mill and Museum, 14296 Old Wye Mills Road, Wye Mills, (410) 827-6909. Rich in heritage, this mill is still grindin’ the old-fashioned way and keeping the residents of Wye Mills damn clear on how their hometown got its name. Oh, and bonus: After you visit the mill, the expression “keep your nose to the grindstone” will make historical sense.

Zippo Lighter Visitor’s Center and Museum, 1932 Zippo Drive, Bradford, (888) 442-1932, www.zippo.com. Attention firebugs! Yes, there is a Zippo museum. And the scarier, even cooler part? The Museum also has a large collection of Case knives. Just leave your juvenile delinquents at home, or hell, bring ‘em with you and watch the literal sparks fly.

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