Card players find their game of choice at center


August 15, 1996|By Judy Reilly | Judy Reilly,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

"WE'RE GOING to become the card capital of Carroll County," predicts Taneytown Senior Center manager Brenda Lerner.

She may be right. At the center, dozens of folks play bridge, canasta or 500, with prizes, lunch and camaraderie.

The Bridge Club meets every Monday, and the players would like to fill a second and third table. Canasta players meet Thursday. The biggest card game group, those who play 500, meets the second Wednesday of each month.

"If you want to play," said Lerner, "all you need to do is make a reservation."

Lerner said that billiards practice is at 9 a.m. Fridays for the Taneytown billiards team.

Reservations and information: 756-4557 or 751-1656.

Ice cream and gossip

Posters and announcements of local events plaster the soda machine. A group of teen-agers hangs out on the picnic tables. And Paul Malat Jr., age 11 months, flirts with the customers.

The scene is Bair's Market on Baltimore Street in Taneytown, where crowds of ice-cream lovers gather in all seasons for large hand-dipped cones and local gossip.

During the school year, youngsters walking home from school or getting off the bus linger at Bair's with their friends.

The Mayberry Archers, a club of archery enthusiasts, stops at Bair's for ice cream and socializing after their monthly meeting.

After a long drive home from a vacation, Carroll residents such as Betty Hooper of Finksburg stop at the store for a milkshake.

And Bair's is where Taneytown's day-shift workers meet their night-shift friends.

My family discovered Bair's after a day of biking in Gettysburg. It was a crisp autumn day, we had a craving for milkshakes, and the sign in front of the store, announcing "Home of the Big Ice Cream Cone," was too good to pass up. We got our frozen treats, sat on the picnic tables outside the store and watched the people go by.

Lisa Malat, the store's owner, says it's this laid-back atmosphere that accounts for the store's popularity. She won't chase you off the premises and has planted a rocking chair on the sidewalk so people can sit and relax with a soft drink and snack. Malat rewards children who get A's on their report cards with a free cone; ditto the Little League players and anyone celebrating a birthday.

"We know a lot of people by name," she said, "and keep track of who is in the hospital and what's going on. And people are always looking out for us, and stopping in to see how the baby's growing. The customers are so nice that it's not really a job -- I'd rather put 70 hours a week in here, than 40 anywhere else."

Information: 756-6634.

Taneytown roundabout

If you've been wondering about changes in the traffic pattern at Antrim Boulevard and Route 140 in Taneytown, here's what's happening: The State Highway Administration is installing a roundabout, a '90s version of the traffic circle you might have seen in places such as Gettysburg.

John Concannon, of the SHA's District 7 office, says traffic circles encourage traffic to slow down, thus reducing accidents.

Route 140 at Antrim was the scene of 24 accidents in a four-year period, and 13 of those were severe right-angle accidents.

The slow speed (maximum 15 mph) at a roundabout should cut accidents by as much as 80 percent, he said. Concannon said that roundabouts are easier and cheaper to maintain than traffic signals. The SHA will plant low shrubs and other plants and will install lighting to provide a gateway into Taneytown.

"We've done a roundabout in Lisbon, in Howard County," Concannon said, "and the residents have accepted it quite nicely. They love it."

The new traffic pattern should begin today or tomorrow, depending on the weather. Temporary lines and drums will steer the roundabout's initial traffic until a permanent central island is installed.

Celebrate Taneytown

It's just around the corner: the first Celebrate Taneytown day Aug. 24, and the Taneytown Lions Club will begin by cooking and serving a pancake breakfast.

Breakfast will be at the firefighters' building on the carnival grounds in Taneytown from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. A ham raffle and bake table will be included. Prices are $4.50 for adults and $2.25 for children ages 6 to 12. Information: 751-1227.

Judy Reilly's Northwest Carroll neighborhood column appears each Thursday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

Pub Date: 8/15/96

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