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Still dazzling after 35 years

A lot of ego sparks the famous boat parade on Ego Alley

The Messiah can’t be sung just once

They’re the decorations on Riverdale Baptist Church’s Living Christmas Tree

Create your holiday kingdom for the Greater Annapolis Lego Open

New loggerhead hatchling joins National Aquarium

Still dazzling after 35 years

Let me describe the spirit of Christmas: It’s the wonder in a child’s eyes when Scrooge talks to them as they wait in line November 19 with their parents for a ticket to Colonial Players’ 35-year Annapolis holiday tradition, A Christmas Carol. It’s another child’s giddy excitement when Ebeneezer pulls them from the audience to dance as he joyfully transforms from cold-hearted humbug to warm, genial benefactor. Having played Scrooge twice at Colonial, I can tell you...

Luminaries and a parade boats light up Solomons Christmas Walk

When Solomons Islanders see Boy Scouts by the dozens running up and down the street, they know the Christmas season has begun.     “We use local Scout troops to distribute and light the luminaries for our Christmas Walk,” explains Vandy Young, chair of Solomons Christmas Walk. It’s an ingenious use of resources, pairing the distribution of 3,500 candles over a mile with the energy of boys. One group running south and the other north, the Scouts, place candles...

A lot of ego sparks the famous boat parade on Ego Alley

“It started as a silly dare,” explains long-timer Pete Chambliss of the phenomenon that’s become the Eastport Yacht Club Light Parade. What would Christmas in Annapolis be without it?     Thirty-four years ago, the parade was a handful of boaters singing Christmas carols whilst cruising down Ego Alley with a string of fairy lights attached to their boats.     To live up to the dare, Chambliss says, “through the years, we have decorated our...

This quarter-mile walk dazzles all ages

My daughter was little when I first took her to Annmarie Gardens for their Holiday Light Show. There are few sweeter memories than her bundled up in a puffy winter coat, fluffy hat and scarf and rainbow-striped gloves. Her eyes lit up as she got her first peek at the magical forest. In the art center, we were wowed by the colorful and artsy holiday trimmings both on exhibit and for sale.     Nothing, however, compared to her face as we walked — and skipped — along...

The Messiah can’t be sung just once

Competing voices sing Handel’s Messiah to the heavens in Annapolis, at sites only a few blocks from each other.     This weekend will be the 70th anniversary of the Naval Academy’s presentation of the Messiah, which includes 120 Midshipmen in the chorus, the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra and soloists from the roster of the Metropolitan Opera.     “My favorite aspect of our specific performance is the dynamic palate that the Glee Club has,”...

Celebrate the season with festive illuminations

Christmas may be our most well-lit holiday, and rightly so. Our ancestors celebrated light and fires this time of year as the days grew shorter and darker. Lights on the Bay     Instead of settling down for a long winter’s nap, Sandy Point State Park ramps up the Bay’s nightlife with two miles of lights on more than 70 elaborate animated displays.     Anne Arundel Medical Center’s major fundraiser, Lights on the Bay celebrates its 22nd year of...

Like a snowball, it keeps growing

“It got so big so fast,” says Leslie Schwartz of the Artisan Boutique known for some of the best holiday shopping in Chesapeake Country.     From an artsy at-home fundraiser for a woman debilitated by Lou Gehrig’s disease, the ALS Artisan Boutique has gotten out of hand.     It quickly outgrew Schwartz’s house, finally landing at the Crowne Plaza hotel adjacent to Westfield Mall.     There this year, more than 55 regional...

They’re the decorations on Riverdale Baptist Church’s Living Christmas Tree

You may see 75 singing Christmas balls, but I see 75 angels dressed in white, making a joyful noise on the branches of a 30-foot-high, illuminated, pre-engineered Christmas tree.     Riverdale Baptist Church in Largo is celebrating 30 years of the two-hour holiday production The Living Christmas Tree, which includes a full orchestra, light show and heartwarming play that can turn most any Grinch into a mellow fellow just in time for the holidays.     Originally...

Like the song, it alls adds up

Is there no end to the electrical creativity of Carmela, Alan and Eddy Hangsleben of Lothian? Like The Twelve Days of Christmas, their celebration of the holidays continues to expand. Drive by or wander through their display of over 1,500 strands of lights to see: 12 snowflakes sparkling … 11 reindeer romping through this … 10-letter name: Hangsleben … 9 trees tied with red bows … 8 strands of colored lights, reaching to the Star of Bethlehem … 7 days a week...

Create your holiday kingdom for the Greater Annapolis Lego Open

The holiday kingdom is a world built from imagination. How do you imagine it?     Is the holiday kingdom your church on Christmas Eve? Or your home on Christmas morning?     Or is Chanukah your holiday, and your menorah an eight-branched tree with every branch tipped with flame?     Or Kwanza, with dancing and drums?     Add LEGOS to your imagination and build the holiday kingdom as you see it.     In the Greater...