Leave the drive to someone else! Live, Work in Frederick!

“Leave the driving to us!”  You may be too young to remember the Greyhound bus tag line.   Greyhound wanted to get you to your destination by doing the driving for you. Surely there are many days you sit in crowded traffic lanes commuting elsewhere and wish you could leave the driving to someone else or just leave the driving period!

Well, you can leave the driving or at the very least cut it down by hours.   Work and live in Frederick.   Check out the thousands of businesses located in the greater Frederick area. Leave the two plus hour commute behind and look for a job and career home as well as a home to live in Frederick.

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Frederick offers great locations for small entrepreneurial companies like Wood Street, known nationwide.

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One of the large industrial parks like this one on English Muffin Way

 

 

 

Large businesses in industrial parks as well as small entreprenuerial companies are encouraged to establish, emerge, and grow with the support of the Office of Economic Development, the first Chamber of Commerce chartered in the U.S., and the local Entrepreneurial Council.

 

Statistically there are 9000 businesses and 1300 farms in the Frederick area.

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Industry on Seventh Street

 

Performing arts, culinary industry, health care

fields,  construction industry, insurance industry

and many other fields of work here offer great

alternatives to Interstate 270 commutes.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Frederick Memorial Hospital – one of Frederick’s largest employers in a thriving health care field here.

Large employers like Frederick Memorial Hospital

or small and varied agencies and offices located in

restored structures like the Glass Factory on  

4th Street create opportunities for short, easy  

travel on a daily basis

 

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The Glass Factory – home to a host of small businessesl

 

 

Mid-size employers like

the Homewood at Frederick Retirement

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Homewood at Frederick’s newest Willow Ponds retirement campus

campuses and many

other retirement

services

are within even the

Frederick City limits.  

Live downtown, work

downtown makes an

even better commute!

 

 

Frederick abounds in career and employment options in local government (city and county offices) and in Federal Government at Ft. Detrick with its biomedical, military, and communications operations.

Positions in education exist on campuses including the public and charter schools, Maryland School for the Deaf, Frederick Community College, and Hood College.

Reduced gas costs, reduced wear and tear on your car, reduced environmental pollution, improved local economy are just some of the benefits to less commuting.  Not to mention, reduced wear and tear on you!

Live here, Work here. Live better.

Call me for help in locating a home in an area that offers so many commute less options.

Local Pocket Park and Healing Garden

Maas Pocket Park
Sign at entrance on W. 2nd Street

Sign at entrance on W. 2nd Street.

This wonderful little gem of a pocket park, one of numerous pocket parks in the Frederick area, beckons to you to come in.  The attractive ironwork open gate is a friendly invitation to come and sit in comforting environs anytime from dawn to 10 p.m.  Enclosed by brick walls, one feels safe here.  Once in, you are surrounded by nicely tended gardens, benches, and tables with checkerboards permanently imprinted.  One can easily shed the world while sitting in this obscure little space.

Checkers in the garden

Checkers in the garden

Explore beyond the gate and find readings etched on a wall, garden plaques and memorial bricks with children’s names and a unique structure called a whispering bench.  Whisper a message in one side and it can be heard on the other side of this artfully designed structure.  This is a place where anyone could find a peaceful moment.  And that is intentional.

Soul touching

Soul touching

Whispering Bench

Bonita Maas Park is a healing garden pocket park sometimes adorned with colorful pinwheels. The pinwheels are symbols of happy, healthy childhood.  The park contains memorials for children lost to child abuse and reminds us of those unthinkably in the throes of abuse.  The Children’s Advocacy Center ( https://frederickcountymd.gov/481/Child-Advocacy-Center-CAC) in cooperation with the City of Frederick, other agencies, businesses, and volunteers dedicated the Bonita Maas Healing Park early last year   Many  years ago, Earl and Bonita Maas operated Maas Opticians in the adjacent building at 5 West Second Street.

A little pocket of pleasure

A little pocket of pleasure in the city

The site is one of a number of little known pocket parks in the region.  These small outdoor spaces provide quiet settings for meditation, enjoying nature, resting, and soothing the soul.  Share with readers where your favorite Frederick pocket park is located.  Whether you are new to the area or an established resident you may be surprised to find an unexplored pocket of pleasure near you.  Just more of the treasures of Frederick living.

Neighborhood Connections

Neighborhood Connections

Every jurisdiction has neighborhoods….towns, cities, suburbs, rural areas.   Neighborhood is defined as a geographically bounded community of multiple and often numerous residences.  Yet some of the most interesting and diverse neighborhoods may not be named and may not be drawn on any map.

Frederick County is divided into municipalities and developments that control where residents vote, go to school, and what services people receive.  The City of Frederick has defined neighborhoods identified as NACs, run by Neighborhood Advisory Councils.  These Councils provide citizens with avenues for obtaining neighborhood improvements and communicating with elected leaders.  You can find them easily on the map.

Neighborhood Amber Meadows

Cul de Sac Neighbors

 

Yet, within the City are other neighborhoods of almost every kind.  The North End Civic Association holds yearly picnics at Staley Park in Frederick.   It is well attended each year by both those who live there now and by those who lived in this neighborhood in the past. NECA just celebrated its 70th anniversary, proof of the strength of neighborhoods.

Downtown Neighborhood

New Downtown Neighborhood

 

Ever attended a block party?  Ever shoveled snow and finished up with hot chocolate, hot toddys?  Or played a late night game of Scrabble with the neighbors because no one could get to work the next day? How about built a snowman in your cul de sac?  Start as neighbors, become friends!

 

There is a cohesive neighborhood of 3 homes surrounded by multiple acres near the watershed.  Another neighborhood was brought together by resident interactions based on advocacy.  Yet another all met at the same time when they were first building their homes. Neighborhood bonds can last a lifetime.

Some of Frederick’s greatest treasures are unnamed and unmapped neighborhoods within neighborhoods. Come with me to find a home in one of the neighborhoods of Frederick.  Who knows what unexpected treasures you might find?

Mailbox Neighborhood

Meet at the mailbox!

Giving Back the Power

Power Saving Home

Giving back power is one of the goals of a relatively new housing industry.  Of course, I am talking about sustainable (also know as “green”) building.  Many of you know of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design or LEED movement.  You are seeing that LEED word many places these days – but what does it really mean?

Power saving

Green Light

LEED housing meets strict requirements of the US Environmental Protection Agency.  There are other green building certifications, but LEED is the most widely known. In order to get LEED certification, homes collect points for green features including energy efficient light bulbs, water-saving toilets, high-efficiency appliances and systems, insulation, and rooftop solar panels.

Energy efficient homes save power with their high efficiency systems.  Net-zero homes are designed to generate as much electricity as they use.  Sometimes, so much power is generated that the electric meter runs backward. This sends energy back to the grid – giving back the power.

Lowering utility bills is only one of the benefits of green homes. Financial benefits include tax credits and increased resale value.  Data shows that green homes increase value about 9% above traditional housing. A green home is a great investment!

Using less power

Green City

Almost 30% of homes built in 2016 will qualify as sustainable housing.  This not only benefits home owners.  It benefits the world we live in.  Solar and wind-powered energy don’t require water or deplete other natural resources.  They’re less prone to large-scale failure because they are built in modules that are distributed through a region.  A weather disaster may knock out pieces, but the system can usually operate without those pieces.

Power in cloud

Clean Air

Renewable energy does impact the environment – but its impacts are less damaging than fossil fuels.  Less greenhouse gases which trap heat in the atmosphere are emitted. Health is improved because of air and water quality is improved.

Green certifications of different levels of achievement are awarded by LEED for Homes, Energy Star, and NAHB Green organizations.  You can check out their websites for details or you can give me a call.  I’d love to help you find a green home in Frederick!

Saving Power World

Hold the World Gently in our Hands

It’s all about Trust

Donna Kuzemchak
Trust your Realtor

Priscilla and Marshall’s new home

Picking a Realtor is all about trust.  You need someone who will answer all your questions.  Someone who understands that you don’t buy or sell houses every day.  Someone you’re comfortable with.  Someone who will be honest with you even if it’s bad news.  In essence, find someone you can trust.

Having a Realtor help you sell your house can save you time and money.  Only a Realtor can put your property on the local Listing Service, which is the best marketing tool you can use.  A Realtor understands the intricacies of selling and is able to to help you figure out the sometimes convoluted selling process.  S/he will will do a market analysis and help you list your home at a price that will attract potential buyers.  S/he will shepherd the process from listing to contract through to closing.

 

Trust your Title Company

Smiles at the closing table

Some Realtors will tell you that you should have an Exclusive Buyers Agent to purchase a home. I agree it’s good to have an agent working exclusively for you as a buyer, but it’s not always necessary.  Having someone who knows what you are looking for and is helping you find the right house at the right price is invaluable.  Having someone who is able to help you negotiate a good price for the home you want to buy can save you thousands of dollars.

Having someone you can trust is priceless.

 

Trust your Listing Agent

Under contract in 8 days!

Listing Agents work for the seller.  As a buyer, you can still choose to use the listing agent to help purchase a property that you want.  Just remember that according to Maryland law, the Listing Agent works for the seller.  S/he must still be honest with you, and isn’t allowed to hide latent defects in the home.  Agents can work for the seller and still help you as a buyer.

 

Having a professional Realtor help you buy or sell your home is in your best interests.  Using one you trust is the most important decision of all!

 

What’s Brewing in Frederick?

Tenth Ward Distillery

What’s brewing in Frederick these days?  Yummy liquid beverages to soothe your throat and raise your “spirits”! 

Brewing and Distilling

X Ward

Brewing the perfect beer, developing state of the art cider, distilling unique whiskeys and brandies, and making wine provide new experiences in a City that already has much to offer.  Providing unique and special adult beverages requires the perfect combination of creative art and science, along with the right location and space.  The manufacturers provide the creativity and science, while Frederick provides the perfect location and space.

It’s a recipe for delicious fun!

 

 

Brewing in Frederick

Flying Dog Brewery

Did you know that Frederick boasts over one-half of Maryland’s wine production with more than 120 acres of vineyards nearby?  New breweries and distilleries are popping up all around serving craft beers and other adult drinks.  It forms a sort of Frederick Wine/Beer Trail of nationally acclaimed beverages.  

(Please don’t set out on the trail driving yourself.  A Designated Driver is a necessity!)

 

 

Frederick County is also home to Maryland’s first licensed cidery.  Located in Jefferson, Distillery Lane Ciderworks offers fresh and hard ciders from its over 3,000 tree orchard. DLC also offers cider making classes and tours of its historic location.

Brewing and distilling in Frederick

Great places for great beverages!

Frederick is the right location for local brewing, distilling, cider and wine making.  It’s also the perfect place for enjoying inventive flavors of other beverages amidst the fun of Frederick life.

Art + Science = Flavor + Fun in Frederick!

Looking for a place to live full of flavor and fun? Want to live in a place you can take family and friends to year-round tours and tastings?  Call me about the possibilities in Frederick, Maryland.

Financial Tips from Trish Croker, Senior Loan Officer with Presidential Bank Mortagage  in Frederick, Maryland –   Amid considerable recent market volatility due to Brexit (Britain’s vote to exit the European Union), mortgage interest rates remain relatively unchanged  at historically favorable levels.  Now is a great time for real estate buyers and sellers to take advantage of these very favorable mortgage interest rates.  

Call Trish at 301.663.9999 for information and rates.

Adaptive Reuse – Recycling on a Grand Scale

Adaptive reuse is recycling on a grand scale.  Actually adaptive reuse is on the scale of reusing an old site or old building for a purpose other than the one for which it was originally constructed and used.  In other words, the original structure is not torn down to have something else built in its place.  Instead, the original structure is adapted within and without to serve a new purpose for a current population while allowing it to hold the history of the site intact.

Record Street Home

Adaptive Reuse

Adaptive reuse is a worldwide creative architectural endeavor with some amazing results – from the Everyman Theater in Baltimore, a theater adapted from a parking garage –  to a European sewage plant turned into a cultural center – to a bank in Butte, Montana that is now a restaurant serving dinner in the vault.  All of these efforts and thoughtful consideration of history and progress are key in conserving land and history and reducing urban sprawl.

City Hall

Government reuse

Protection of our historic resources has encouraged much adaptive reuse in Frederick.  The William Talley Recreation Center was featured in my last post.  Another well known building in Frederick that has been preserved by adaptive reuse is City Hall.  In its former life, it was the Courthouse of Frederick County.  It is one of the many buildings that make downtown Frederick an architectural marvel.

There are many brilliant examples of adaptive reuse in downtown – factories that have become office buildings, residential spaces that now hold businesses, and even churches that have become residences.  These types of adaptive reuse help Frederick residents enjoy the past while living in the future.

 

 

520 N Market

520 North Market Street

Upcoming adaptive reuse project:

520 North Market Street was built in 1878 as a “school for boys.”  It is characterized by its flat roof, projecting central pavilion and bracketed cornices.  The former schoolhouse became offices for Citizen Services of Frederick County.  The County sold the building to Interfaith Housing Alliance for the purpose of creating workforce housing.  IHA is partnering with PIRHL to adapt this lovely old building into 59 apartments.

Support businesses and organizations in our area that aim to adaptively reuse existing and historic structures and thereby preserve our history and secure our future.

 

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Where is this building?

 

Question of the day: This is not on the library building you know on Patrick Street.  Do you where this sign is?

 

Marching to a different beat

Armory capstone

Marching at the Armory

The Armory, on the corner of Bentz and Second Street was built in 1913 to serve Company A, First Regiment of the Maryland National Guard.  It is a beautiful example of adaptive reuse.  The armory was built in a T shape.  It has a two story “head” in the front and a long drill hall extending to the rear.  At first glance, the building front on Bentz Street reminds one of a fortress with its dark masonry construction and towers and buttresses.  Children often know this building on sight, calling it the “castle.”

Armory 1

Castle facade

After Company A moved to new quarters in the 1980’s, the building provided space for a number of social and recreational events.  In 2001, the City renovated the building.  The gymnasium that was used for marching is now used for basketball, volleyball and events. The basement is a fitness center; and smaller rooms all over the building are used for meetings, offices and storage.

 

Passers by no longer hear marching orders for soldiers in the drill hall.  Now, we hear the music and directions of exercise instructors for aerobic classes, the clink of exercise equipment in use in the Fitness Center, and the active voices of citizenry in the classrooms and social rooms.  Check out the brochure on the William R. Talley Recreation Center at www.cityoffrederick.com under Recreation for the list of programs and offerings available at the Center now.

Armory Sign

Talley Recreation Center

 

 

Did you know?

William R. Talley was the first Director of Recreation for Frederick City and a man with a long legacy of coaching and a long serving supporter of recreational activities.

Do you know the name of the contractor who built the Frederick Armory in 1913?

Winter takes a hike and so should You!

 

Hike with Loki and his backpack

Hike with Loki and his backpack

Finally, winter took a hike; now, so can we!  It’s time to get outside and enjoy this wonderful place many of us are lucky to call home.

Spring is the perfect time to explore all kinds of inviting paths around Frederick.  You can take a hike on the 15 miles of trails at Gambrill Mountain straddling the Catoctin Mountain Ridge or take a leisurely stroll along the paved walks of Carroll Creek Linear Park with your pet on a leash.  You can increase your speed to a calorie burning pace in Baker Park from Bentz Street to Schifferstadt.  Check out the City of Frederick website (www.cityoffrederick.com) that identifies 4 different paths around Baker Park each with different distances.

Enjoy more adventurous treks at Cunningham Falls (although I suggest you wait a few months to actually get in the Falls).  The trails there offer both short and moderate length hikes as well as a longer 8 mile loop.  Take your camera and enjoy the great overlooks  at Wolf and Chimney Rocks.

Walk some of the historic 185 mile towpath of the C&O Canal (by the way it’s open year round), the numerous trails and loops on Sugarloaf Mountain  or South Mountain where you meet the border of the Appalachian Trail.

If you love history, visit the Monocacy Battlefield for scenery and to trace the path of the battle or take a walking tour of downtown Frederick (my kids still remember the story of “Spite”) or stop at the Visitor Center in downtown Brunswick and pick up a walking tour brochure that outlines 13 stops and begins along the Potomac River.

Want company on your hike?  Check out www.meetup.com/hiking/us/md/frederick or contact The Mountain Club of Maryland at mcomd.org or the local branch of the Sierra Club at www.sierraclub.org/maryland/catoctin-group.  OR call your neighbor, meet at the closest park and follow the path you see.

Adrian keeps on hiking

Adrian keeps on hiking

East, West, North, and South – wherever you live in this area, a hiking adventure is waiting for you and your comfortable shoes!  You probably won’t be the first person to walk the path you find.

Did you know:  Wolf Rock is a quartzite formation that is reported to be 550 million years old. While standing there think about whose shoes might have already been in that very spot!

Want to make your home in or near this hiking wonderland?

Call me at 301-964-9988.

 

 

 

Reflections on Frederick

Reflections in spring

Reflections in Carroll Creek

For years, Bill Adkins has artfully captured the essence of Frederick with his trusty camera, and this photo of reflections in Carroll Creek made me think of how I tend to reflect on my years of living in Frederick when I take an evening stroll in the park. Frederick isn’t the sleepy town I moved to in 1986.  Back then, the downtown sidewalks rolled up at 6PM. Frederick has evolved into a vibrant, eclectic community of residents, businesses, shops, and restaurants.  The City has more than doubled in size – providing friendships and possibilities I never imagined when I moved here.

This picture captures the heart of an evening walk in the park – the gentle curving brick walkway, the still water of Carroll Creek, the twilight evening, the gorgeous sky, the reflection of the walkway lining trees on the water, and the green lush grass.  The street lamps invite two walkers further along the path, and the reflection in the water invites us to contemplate the joys of life.  Ahhhh you say… a calm and quiet evening stroll….time to think and enjoy and reflect.

I see many of you strolling the downtown streets taking in the atmosphere, enjoying the architecture, checking out the storefront window displays; and I see you strolling along the Creek greeting passersby with a simple smile or a cheery hello.  I see you in Baker Park sitting on the many wonderfully placed benches just watching and seeing what that spot has to offer; and I see you in your neighborhoods enjoying our safe and eclectic community.

So what are you thinking about at those times?  What do those walks and quiet times mean to you?  What are you reflecting on?  I’d love to know and I’d love potential residents to the Frederick area to know your reflections.  Help me help them see more of what Frederick has to offer.  Submit your thoughts and comments and next time I see you on the walkway, know that your reflections have helped me better share the Frederick that we love.

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For help locating or selling a home in Frederick, contact Donna Kuzemchak at 301-964-9988 or donnak@machomes.com.  You can contact Mackintosh Realtors at 301-662-0155.

To see more of Bill Adkins’ work, go to www.ayearonmarket.com

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