Photo essays

From the vault: Santa around the Baltimore area

From the vault: Santa around the Baltimore area

82 Photos

Santa Claus has graced the pages of the Baltimore Sun many times over the years. Looking at the photos as a whole, there are a couple of constants we can draw about the jolly elf.

• Santa likes to make an entrance – sometimes by motorcycle, helicopter, boat or train.

• Even Santa has the occasional bad beard day.

• Not every child is keen to sit on Santa’s lap – those that don’t, really don’t.

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Antietam National Battlefield Memorial Illumination

Antietam National Battlefield Memorial Illumination

16 Photos

Photos and text by Karl Merton Ferron

Marking the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, about 1,500 volunteers spent all day walking around the hills outside downtown Sharpsburg to put a common goal into action. After measuring grids to line each row, over 23,000 luminarias were placed in remembrance of the bloodiest single day in U.S. history. Adults helped children return to each bag and light every Antietam candle. Although some of the luminarias extinguished in the sustained wind, most remained lit, well into the night, commemorating the 28th annual Memorial Illumination at Antietam National Battlefield.

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Making rolls for Thanksgiving

Making rolls for Thanksgiving

30 Photos

Photos and text by Barbara Haddock Taylor

James W. Hamlin, who grew up in the Druid Heights neighborhood, wanted to bring people back to Baltimore’s historic Pennsylvania Avenue. He hoped to provide the community with a valuable service and offer a unique product to entice visitors.

The result is The Avenue Bakery, which opened in the summer of 2011. The bakery makes cakes, pies, muffins, cookies, croissants and cobblers. By Thanksgiving of that year, word was out that the Avenue’s signature item, “Poppay’s” dinner rolls, were something unique. The rolls, which Mr. Hamlin has been making for around 20 years, were named by his granddaughter Bria.

Poppay’s rolls at Thanksgiving have quickly become a tradition for many Baltimore area families. They draw people from Virginia and Pennsylvania as well. Customers place orders well in advance, but the bakery also makes dozens more available on a first-come, first serve basis on the day before Thanksgiving.

Mr. Hamlin and his family and friends baked around 400 dozen rolls this week, working around the clock since Monday night. Jules Howie, a regular customer, picked up her rolls on Wednesday afternoon and said the bakery is “a treasure, a beacon of light in the community.”

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