ARE WE READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL? That was the question at the Hit and Run Club at Memorial Stadium, where the Baltimore NFL Expansion Committee held a press conference to hype ticket sales to the Miami Dolphins/New Orleans Saints exhibition game. (That date will be Aug. 28 or 29, depending on network television.) Herb Belgrad, chair of the Maryland Stadium Authority, arrived with his "movers and shakers," while Centre Management's Edie Brown brought in a lion's share of the Baltimore media. Centre Management is working with the Baltimore NFL Expansion Committee to promote Jan. 25 as the day to buy your tickets for the exhibition game.
Among the "united we stand" cheerleaders who joined Belgrad on stage were Gov. William Donald Schaefer, Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke, Sen. Barbara Mikulski, Legg Mason CEO Chip Mason, sportscasters John Buren, Scott Garceau and Max Morgan; Evening Sun sports columnist John Steadman and our guy Friday, Matt DeVito. Not only is DeVito the chairman of the Greater Baltimore Committee, which comprises 1,000 of Baltimore's businesses that are backing NFL football in Baltimore, but he's CEO and chairman of the nation's leading real estate development firm, The Rouse Company. Combine that with his avid interest in football and he's definitely a key player in Baltimore's effort to bring an NFL team back to Baltimore.
Of course we all hear what we want to, but I know I heard Mayor Schmoke mention that the new football stadium would "hopefully" be domed. And I think it was Belgrad who groaned in the background. Others in attendance who are active in the NFL endeavor were Hank Butta, Marty Goldman, Jerry Sachs, David Cohn, Bob Keller, Walt Gutowski, Sam Lamantia, Ed Block Courage Award; and John Ziemann, who by keeping the Baltimore Colts Band together all these years has kept the spirit of football alive.
It was nice to see so many Colts who gave us many wonderful hours at Memorial Stadium -- Art Donovan, Tom Matte, Sisto Averno, Jim Mutschler, Rev. Joe Erhmann, Stan White, Fred Miller, Rick Volk and Bubba Graham. I couldn't help but wonder why John Unitas, Jim Parker, Marty Domres and Ordell Braase were not there.
Potential owners of our new team, Malcolm Glazer and his sons, Joel and Bryan, attended, as did Merry-Go-Round president Michael Sullivan, representing his company's owner, Boogie Weinglass; and Fred Arscott repped Tom Clancy.
The bottom line is that the exhibition game must be a sellout or it will give us a black eye in our effort to get our team later this year, so let's show the world that we can fill a stadium again!
THE PARTY SCENE: Going away is the theme at Mitsu's this weekend for former Channel 11 anchor Camilla Carr, who landed an anchor/medical reporting job at WTNH-TV in New Haven, Conn. It will be like going home for Carr, a Mt. Holyoke grad. Carr's good deeds in town have not gone unnoticed and will be missed especially by one College of Notre Dame grad who had her tuition paid by Carr until she graduated.
J.E. "Doc" Dockery, curator of ARTSHOWCASE Gallery, is hosting a reception at the gallery, 336 N. Charles St., to benefit Our Daily Bread. Enjoy beautiful watercolors, good food and a chance to win a $600 framed watercolor by Anne Weikart. Call 783-0007 for tickets, $20, if bought in advance, or $25 at the door.
GOOD NEWS: The Pavilion at the Walters, which opened last May for lunch and private parties, has done so well with its luncheon business that dinner will now be served on Thursday and Friday evenings beginning Jan. 16. This delightful cafe is run by the Classic Catering People and reservations are a must. Call 727-CAFE.
JANUARY BIRTHDAYS: Delegate Anne Healy, Jan. 2; Delegate Sam Johnson, Jan. 2; Delegate Joe Bartenfelder, Jan. 3; WCBM radio's Frank Luber, Jan. 6; Delegate Norman Conway, Jan. 11; Delegate Christopher Van Hollen Jr., Jan. 10.