Davidsonville * Edgewater * Shady Side * Deale

ANNAPOLIS/SOUTH COUNTY --

August 26, 1993

Deli owner left in dark on neon law

The owner of Chick & Ruth's Delly says he never received a letter from Annapolis City Hall suggesting he apply to the town's Historic District Commission for an exemption for his suddenly controversial five-word blue and orange neon sign.

"My son went down and double-checked [yesterday]," said Chick Levitt, the bow-tied proprietor of the Main Street landmark. "They told him they sent a letter out to about 12 business owners, but they excluded me because they thought I'd be grandfathered in."

The deli sign has been a hot topic for the past few weeks because of a new city law banning neon from the historic district -- a law sponsored by Mr. Hammond, R-Ward 1, who represents the district where the deli is located. Mr. Hammond said he opposes neon signs because they present a "honky-tonk image" rather than a historic one.

The City Council is scheduled to review the law Oct. 11, because of Mr. Levitt's protest.

The original bill would have allowed Mr. Levitt's sign, which has been hanging in the deli window for 26 years, to remain. Under the law that was passed, only the Maryland Avenue Subway shop, which received approval from the Historic District Commission several years ago, would be allowed to keep its neon sign unless the council takes other action.

Group of 12 robs Shady Side grocery

About a dozen people walked into a Shady Side grocery store Tuesday afternoon and robbed it, county police reported.

Investigators said six men and six women walked into the Shady Side Market in the 1400 block of Snug Harbor Road at 4 p.m. and distracted the clerk.

The clerk became suspicious and went to check on an unlocked safe in the office. As he walked back, he saw several of the women taking money out of the safe, he told police.

Three of the men held the clerk while the women finished the job, police said.

The group drove off in three separate cars: a maroon Taurus, a mid-size white car and a dark red Pontiac Bonneville, according to police.

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