I have found archaeological proof that Glen Burnie was once a major tourist attraction.
No, I haven't found an old brochure, or a signreferring to it as the "Tourist Mecca of the East Coast" or even a guidebook to Where to Go and What to See.
I've found something even better and more conclusive.
Unearthed from the dim environs of a Belair Road antique shop on the northern edge of Baltimore, the shakers are in the shape of little coffee kettles. They're painted a rather unflattering shade of red (though much of it has worn off). And they sport little decals on the front depicting a bucolic suburban street scene -- sans cars, but with a few swaying trees -- clearly labeled "Glen Burnie, Maryland."
The guy behind the counter didn't know Fact1 about these treasures (including the price; we eventually settled on 50 cents as fair). The woman who accompanied me on this shopping trip knew only that I was wasting more money. And my chief concern wasfinding an appropriate place to display this newfound piece of Americana (it now rests in my dining room china closet).
Alas, I still have no clue as to the origin of these shakers. Obviously they are from a time long past, when Glen Burnie rivaled Fort McHenry and the Naval Academy as area tourist attractions. (I wonder if there were tourbuses?)
And, to be truthful, I have no proof somebody didn't simply put these together from scratch, painting a pair of white salt-and-pepper shakers red and slapping a Glen Burnie decal on the front.
But I'd like to think they're real, that some factory in Japan actually cranked them out as Glen Burnie souvenirs and that others of their ilk exist. And I'd appreciate any information on them loyal Anne Arundel County Sun readers could provide.
Regardless of their origin, they sure look good between my Humpty-Dumpty salt-and-pepper shakers from West Virginia and the souvenir toothpick holder from Yellowstone.
ILLUSTRATION: PHOTO THE ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY SUN --DENISE SANCHEZ
CAPTION: Found: relics of Glen Burnie's heyday as a tourist mecca -- souvenir salt-and-pepper shakers depicting an bucolic town scene.
REVOLVING DOOR AT AACC
Forget not being ableto tell the players without a score card. At Anne Arundel Community College, it's the coaches who change like the tide.
The latest to roll out of the Arnold campus is women's soccer coach Hillory Dean, who submitted his letter of resignation last week.
Let's check those office pools. Who had Hillory Dean and the month of August?
OK, who had the first week in August?
Dean's case is especially curious, since he had just accepted the job less than three months ago. He worked as an assistant to Mike Miles the past six seasons and largelywas responsible for the Pioneers' recent success -- including a No. 1 national ranking among junior colleges in 1988.
The reasons given in Dean's letter include pending knee surgery and a recent marriageand move to the Eastern Shore. Otherwise, he won't elaborate publicly on his decision to leave a job he coveted for so long.
No matter. What's important is the Pioneers lost another coach who was popularwith his players and extremely knowledgeable in his sport. He would have continued where Miles left off.
Interestingly, only Ken Wolf (men's soccer) and Cal Peterson (golf) remain at their original head coaching positions since C. A. "Buddy" Beardmore became athletic director three years ago.
Peterson took a sabbatical leave in 1986 andreturned in 1990.
Beardmore says the constant change in the athletic department "hasn't been overly pleasant," which is like saying athlete's foot isn't overly comfortable.
Set to begin his 19th season, Wolf, 42, is the dean of Anne Arundel head coaches, though he doesn't feel like it. To him, he's still the newcomer, fresh off a stint as a graduate assistant at Frostburg State University.
Wolf, who lives within a mile of the college and usually jogs or rides his bike to work, wants to see some stability return to the athletic department, "but people have their priorities change as they get older and think things through differently," he said.
"I don't want to be selfish and say I would like to have it my way," he said. "You have to think in terms of what everyone else thinks is best for them."
Right now, what's best for Ken Wolf is to remain at Anne Arundel, working to advance beyond last year's 11-6-1 record and a one-goal loss to Montgomery-Rockville in the Region XX semifinals.
Don't jot down Wolf's name in the office pool just yet.
"At some point, maybe I'll sit down and think about (quitting). But as long as my family is content and (the coaching job) remains a high priority, I'll stay with it,"he said.
"I'm not a real good long-range planner -- that's just my personality. Some people sit down and draw up their family objectives and come up with a 10-year or five-year plan. But long-range for me is what's happening next week."
These days, knowing an Anne Arundel coach will be around next week is a long-range commitment.