Where to celebrate Presidents Day

February 14, 2002|By Carl Schoettler | Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF

Clarificaton

In the cover article in yesterday's LIVE section, Baltimore's Washington Monument (1829) was described as the nation's first monument dedicated to George Washington. That distinction goes to the stone tower erected in 1827 in Boonsboro, Md. The Baltimore landmark was the nation's first architectural monument to Washington.

Maryland State House

State Circle, Annapolis

Washington resigned from his command of the Continental Army here. A Washington mannequin in period costume stands in the Old Senate Chamber. Jefferson, Madison and Monroe were delegates to the Continental Congress, which met here from 1783 to 1786. Open Mondays to Fridays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Guided tours 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Brookeville

Georgia Avenue one mile north of Olney, Montgomery County

President Madison fled here in 1814 as the British marched into Washington and began burning the city. Today, Brookeville is a charming village with well-preserved 18th- and 19th-century houses and some interesting 20th-century homes, such as "the Sears-catalog house" at High and Market streets. The Madison House, where Madison conducted presidential affairs for two days, is located at 205 Market St. Call 301-570-4465 for a walking-tour booklet and map.

Northern Central Railroad Trail

Runs from Ashland Road in Hunt Valley to the state line and north on a Pennsylvania extension

Lincoln came south on this route on the way to his first inauguration in 1861, traveled north to deliver the Gettysburg Address, and was borne away on a Northern Central funeral train after his assassination in 1865. The trail is open every day from sunrise to sunset for walking, running, biking and horseback riding. More than 250,000 people use this trail every year. But traffic is usually light on Presidents Day.

Mount Vernon Square

Charles and Monument streets

The first Washington Monument in the nation was raised here in 1829. A few blocks away is the Maryland Historical Society, with the wonderful Charles Willson Peale painting of Washington and His Generals at Yorktown. The Washington Monument (410-396-0929) is open to visitors Tuesdays to Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays. Those who climb the 228 steps to the top will get a grand view of Baltimore. The Maryland Historical Society (201 W. Monument St.; 410-685-3750) is open Tuesdays to Fridays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sundays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. General admission is $4; $3 seniors, students and children 13 to 17; children 12 and under free. No charge on Sundays.

Thurmont

Frederick County, 15 miles north of Frederick on Route 15

Thurmont nestles into the edge of Catoctin Mountain park, where Camp David occupies a hilltop a couple of miles away. So Thurmont is a prime spot for president-spotting, although that could be problematic in these times of heightened security. Presidents have most often left the camp to go to church on Sunday. Nixon, Johnson, Ford and Carter worshipped in the 174-year old Harriet Chapel Episcopal Church. Eisenhower went to the Trinity United Church of Christ. Churchill, on one of his visits, popped out to get a beer at the Cozy Restaurant, which still serves thirsty travelers. If you're not a world leader or related to the president, the best way for you to visit Camp David is probably by way of a virtual tour. Check out http://travel.to/campdavid on the Web. It's packed with photos and factoids.

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