The plan to renovate Union Square's old No. 2 library into a resource center for city neighborhoods is just one of the things going on in that West Baltimore area.
The nearby Hollins Market has a new gem in the studio of Anthony Corradetti, a masterful glass blower. It is located in an old municipal toilet building in the 1100 block Hollins Street (there are still urinals in the yard, now containing flowers) and is open to the public on weekend afternoons. Mr. Corradetti lives in a garage next door that looks both uninhabited and unhabitable.
Many artists have gravitated to the Hollins Market area in recent years. They will exhibit their work during the Sowebohemian festival, a free bash of music and general craziness May 29. Over the years it has turned into one of the biggest summer-time parties in the city.
For those wanting to sample the neighborhood in a more sedate atmosphere, there is the May 22 Union Square-Hollins Market tour of 24 gardens. Festivities start in the park, Lombard and Stricker streets, at noon when the kilted John F. Nicoll bagpipe band of Baltimore County performs.
Since Prohibition days, many Hollins Market residents have been creatively involved in mixology. Phil Hildebrandt's group of home brewers now has a dozen members. And a neighborhood restaurant, Gypsy's Cafe, has concocted one of the strangest drinks around: "Bloody Baltimore."
Active ingredients include Rolling Rock beer, spicy V-8 juice, black pepper, red pepper, Old Bay and some other enhancements. Gypsy proprietress JoeAnneWhitely may have gotten her inspiration from the Virginia hill country where many a morning is said to dawn with a "Red Eye" -- beer and tomato juice.
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WEDDING bells, among other things, are breaking up one of the more mellifluous-sounding political groupings in the Greater Baltimore region this campaign season.
We're referring to the one-two paisan punch of Democratic Delegates Louis L. DePazzo and the former Connie C. Galiazzo, both of Dundalk.
For one thing, Mr. DePazzo is expected to leave the House of Delegates this year to run for the Baltimore County Council.
In addition, the former Ms. Galiazzo, who recently married local union official Ron DeJulius and now goes by Mrs. DeJuliis, likewise is leaving the House.
She has her sights on a higher political office, though -- Maryland's 2nd Congressional District seat -- running as Connie Galiazzo DeJulius.
So no more DePazzo-Galiazzo representation in the 7th Legislative District in the hallways of the State House. While they couldn't be described as political allies, they nonetheless added a nice lilt to the sound of the district's Democratic line-up for a term.