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TOURISM NEWS&NOTES 
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APRIL 2019
Prince George's County Tourism News&Notes is presented by the Prince George's County Conference & Visitors Bureau (CVB), the official Destination Marketing Organization of Prince George's County, Maryland. 
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The Clarice, UMD, College Park

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IN CONCERT: CHICAGO
MGM National Harbor - April 6
 
Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier

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DALLAS BLACK DANCE THEATER
The Publick Playhouse - April 26-28
 
Show Place Arena, Upper Marlboro

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FLOWERS UNITE: NAT'S CHERRY BLOSSOM EVENT NOW OFFICIAL PART OF NCBF 
Over 200 cherry trees at National Harbor are in full bloom for National Cherry Blossom Festival's Sakura Sunday...
This month, the Washington Tidal Basin isn't the only thing in full bloom for the NATIONAL CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL (NCBF). National Harbor's 200+ cherry trees have blossomed, filling the waterfront with beautifully scenic excitement. 

And, on April 14, National Harbor presents SAKURA SUNDAY, an official participating event of the NCBF.

Being held along the NAT'S Waterfront District, Sakura Sunday will feature a wide array of free activities including traditional Japanese picnicking with food available for sale, a Sake, Rosé & Beer Garden, a Japanese Market and Japanese-inspired music and entertainment. 

Expect the day to be culturally-rich as the NAT is partnering with the Japan-American Society of Washington DC to showcase world-class Japanese entertainment and Japanese artisans. 

IN ADDITION, many National Harbor restaurants and retailers along the Waterfront District will be participating with special offers and a cherry blossom store display window competition. The Capital Wheel, with its illuminating display, will turn pink during the festival. Also, the Muse Paintbar will feature cherry blossom art classes and a live painting demonstration. It all happens April 14, 11-8 pm , so mark your calendar. 
 
Bowie Center for the Performing Arts, Bowie

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Milkboy Arthouse, College Park

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FRENCH CONNECTION: FAMED ORCHESTRA PLAYS CLARICE IN RARE AREA APPEARANCE
County's four Brandywine wineries will be celebrating with special events, tastings, and more...
Wow...this doesn't happen everyday! The celebrated SAINT-OMER WIND ORCHESTRA from Northern France will be performing here, April 8 at 8 pm, at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center. This rare musical appearance is part of a national tour with only select stops in the region. 

The group of 72 musicians will play an original and varied repertoire celebrating 300 years of French-American history. The concert also plays tribute to the newly born cooperation between the University of Maryland and the Orchestra.

Among its numerous accomplishments, the Orchestra was rewarded the first prize of the jury and of the audience at the Wind Music Composition competition "Coups de Vents" (2015, 2018), and won the Gold Medal of the International Competition of Orchestras in Kerkrade (Netherlands) "Harmony 1" section (2017). Internationally, it has performed in several countries and was invited to play at the Chiayi Music Festival and four other concerts in Taiwan (2016).

This special performance at The Clarice is FREE, so don't miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. For additional info >> 
 
Montpelier Arts Center, Laurel

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IN CONCERT: THE JOGO PROJECT (Jazz Meets Go-Go)
The Publick Playhouse - April 6
 
Laurel Mill Playhouse, Laurel

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PIE-METRICS: PGC MAINSTAY IS ONE OF EATER DC'S "ESSENTIAL" PIZZA JOINTS
Prince George's County has two top-shelf pizza parlors that are among the DMV's best, according to the editors of Eater DC...
Recently, Eater DC named the 17 ESSENTIAL PIZZERIAS AROUND D.C.

Of no surprise to those in the know, THE ORIGINAL LEDO RESTAURANT (OLR) in College Park , was again recognized as having some of the best pie in the region.

Not to be confused with the Ledo Pizza chain (more on that later). OLR is the original home of the rectangular pizza lathered with an abundance of fresh toppings. Its been dishing out fabulous, old-school pies and Italian favorites since 1955. And, its legion of fans include a "who's who" of famous alums from the University of Maryland.

One of them, Gayle King/Co-Host of CBS The Morning and Oprah Winfrey's bestie, once shared her fond memories of OLR on "Oprah" for the show's  "Quest for the Best Pizza in America" episode back in 2006.

ALSO making the "Essential Pizzerias" list is Chef Ruth Gresser's PIZZERIA PARADISO, which has one of its five outposts in Hyattsville (on Rhode Island Ave). Known as a hub for gourmet pizzas and a dynamite craft beer program, Pizzeria Paradiso is an always-popular dine stop. 

DID YOU KNOW? The Original Ledo Restaurant, which operated in Adelphi before moving to College Park in 2010, is indeed the inspiration behind the popular Ledo Pizza franchise chain. Although Ledo Restaurant and Ledo Pizza discontinued their business relationship soon after the chain got its bearings, it is the Original Ledo Restaurant that ignited the craze.  So, in the world of rectangular pizza, we think that makes the Original Ledo Restaurant... The Mothership.  
 
Harmony Hall Arts Center, Fort Washington

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RHETT & LINK - LIVE, IN CONCERT!
MGM National Harbor - April 7
 
The Clarice, University of Maryland, College Park

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ROCK, ROLL, BOUNCE: PGC INDOOR SKATE HAVENS KEEP THE CULTURAL VIBE ALIVE
Despite a constantly changing landscape, two Prince George's indoor skate hubs keep it rolling...
Hey DJ...I need you to drop that spicy Vaughan Mason & Crew "ROCK, SKATE, ROLL, BOUNCE"!!! I'm ready to get my spin on!

Once a staple in many towns and cities, the indoor skate rink has almost vanished due to changing demographics, interests, lifestyles, and the reshaping of communities (by modern development). 
 
But, with the help of such films as 2006's "ATL" (with its wonderful ode to Skate Wars), and the recent debut of the acclaimed HBO Doc UNITED SKATES (from Executive Producer John Legend), a new crew is discovering the intrinsic urban and cultural value of the area indoor skate rink.

Prince George's County has two that have kept the vibe alive for generations . The Temple Hills Skate Palace and the Lanham Skate Center are still hot-spots on Friday and Saturday nights. 

As a matter of fact, both were featured in a recent Washington Post GOING OUT GUIDE article.
 
Upper Marlboro

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TYLER PERRY'S - "MADEA'S FAREWELL TOUR"
MGM National Harbor - April 12-14
 
Prince George's Stadium, Bowie

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YOUNG PICASSO: OGT PRESENTS FILM THAT EXAMINES ORIGINS OF A GIFTED ARTIST
Authentic Northern Chinese outpost in College Park once again named one of the very best restaurant in the region...
One of the DMV's great art houses, the OLD GREENBELT THEATRE (OGT), presents a film about one of the world's most famous artists.

YOUNG PICASSO, in limited screenings (at select theaters around the country) comes to OGT for TWO SHOWS only - April 14 at 8 pm, and April 15 at 1 pm.  

Pablo Picasso is one of the greatest artists of all time - and right up until his death in 1973 he was the most prolific of artists. Many films have dealt with these later years - the art, the affairs and the wide circle of friends. 

But where did this all begin? What made Picasso in the first place?  Somewhat overlooked, it is time to look at the early years of Picasso; the upbringing and the learning that led to his extraordinary achievements. 

Working closely with all three Picasso Museums in Malaga, Barcelona and Paris this film explains how he rose to great heights.
 
Montpelier Arts Center, Laurel

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DANCE: DEREK HOUGH LIVE!
MGM National Harbor - April 19
 
Show Place Arena, Upper Marlboro

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CHIPS FOR CHARITY: EVENT AT MGM RAISES $2.1M+ FOR PEDIATRIC CANCER RESEARCH
Annual charity gala at MGM National Harbor continues to raise big bucks for a big cause...
What a combination - poker, music, sports & entertainment celebs, fantastic food, and fabulous festivities for a great cause - that's the CHANCE FOR LIFE gala. 

Last month, the charity event (hosted by MGM National Harbor) bested last year's tally by $500 grand, collecting an impressive $2.1+ million for pediatric cancer research. 

Over 2,000 guest were on hand for the  raucous and dynamic experience. The night featured a championship Texas Hold'Em Poker Tournament, Wine & Chef's tastings featuring celebrity chefs, and an epic Vegas-style After Party with MGM entertainment.  

CFL is a leading regional fundraising event established to support pediatric cancer research. It has raised over $6 million with 100% of the net proceeds donated in support of clinical trials and research at Children's National Health System and Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation. 

Created in 2005, CFL was inspired by and in honor of Kennedy Snyder, who was diagnosed with an aggressive spinal cord tumor at the age of 2.
 
Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier

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IN CONCERT: REGINA BELL - "BACK TO HER ROOTS"
The Publick Playhouse - April 14
 
Kenhill Center, Bowie

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SEAR-RIOUSLY: COULD FORMER DEPARTMENT STORE TRACT BE RE-DEV'D, INCLUDE HOTEL?
Owner of the vacant Sears building at Bowie Town Center contemplating a MXT plan that could include a boutique hotel...
Here's an interesting example of re-purposing. The owner of the now-vacant SEARS at Bowie Town Center recently floated the idea of razing the building, and transforming the 10.8 acre parcel into a new mixed-use development.

At the moment, its just a trial balloon. The owner is reviewing all options for the building (and surrounding parking lot), but this "re-dev" concept appears to be high on the leader board. So, there's indeed possible in the possibility. 

If the idea moves forward, it could include multi-family residential, street level retail, a small office building, and...a boutique hotel. 

The building and surrounding parking lot are owned by NY-based  Seritage Growth Properties. Seritage is a REIT with 206 wholly-owned properties and 26 joint venture properties totaling over 36 million sqft across 48 states and the PR.  Back in 2015, Seritage snapped up a portfolio of real estate from Sears Holdings, at a time when Sears was attempting to shed weight, to stay afloat.

As mentioned, Senitage has thrown this on the table to see if it has traction. No immediate actions are in play. No "official" plans have been submitted to the City of Bowie or the Prince George's County Planning Dept. We'll see how this all plays out and keep you tuned.   
 
Bowie Town Center, Bowie

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LADIES NIGHT OUT - COMEDY TOUR
MGM National Harbor - April 20
 
Prince George's Sports & Learning Complex, Landover

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THE BOWL & BEAUTIFUL: BSU WOMEN TAKE CIAA CROWN, NOW NCAA BOUND
Bowie State University Women roll their way to 2019 CIAA Championship, earn selection to NCAA National Bowling Championship...
Rollin' the rock! We're taking this moment to send ultra mad love to the  BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY Bowling Team.

On March 24 in Virginia Beach, in a remarkable match for all the marbles, the Bulldogs capture the 2019 CIAA Bowling Championship.

BSU took out the Fayetteville State University in the final frame, game six, after trailing.

The win not only earned BSU their 5th consecutive CIAA bowling title, it also awarded them an at-large selection to the "Big Lewbowki" - the 2019 National Collegiate Women's Bowling Championship.

BSU will now face the University of Maryland Eastern Shore in an opening round match on April 6 in Delaware. The winner will make their way to the Championship tournament being held in Wickliffe, Ohio.     
 
Rosecroft Raceway, Fort Washington

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Broccoli City Festival feat. Childish Gambino & Lil Wayne
FedExField - April 26-27
 
Bladensburg Waterfront Park, Bladensburg

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THE GREAT 48: BSU COMPETES THIS MONTH IN THE 30TH ANNUAL HONDA CHALLENGE
Bowie State University is among the "Great 48" that will be competing in this month's Honda CASC National Championship...
AND, speaking of the Mighty, Mighty Bulldogs of BSU, let's keep the love fest going... 

Congratulations and well wishes to BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY, one of the 48 Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs) select to competed in this month's 30th annual HONDA CAMPUS ALL-STAR CHALLENGE.

Held April 13-17, on the Honda campus in Torrance, CA, HCASC is the premier academic competition for HBCUs. After a year-long competition, only 48 - THE GREAT 48 - of 101 HBCUs earn the right (through a series of regional tournaments) to compete for the HCASC National Championship.

Go BULLDOGS! You're in elite company and up to the challenge. No matter the outcome, we're proud you're in the house.
 
Laurel Mill Playhouse, Laurel

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IN CONCERT: STRAIGHT NO CHASER
MGM National Harbor - April 28
 
University of Maryland, College Park

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NEVER FAKE JAKE: CVB NEWS&NOTES EARNS ALL STAR AWARD, TWO YEARS STRAIGHT  
Prince George's CVB again named an "ALL STAR" by Constant Contact for its industry newsletter...
GO FIGURE! The final report, just released, is complete vindication folks. No collusion, no obstruction whatsoever! NO CO-CO-LEW-SHUN! We earned it...fair and square! 

For the second year in a row, the CVB's Tourism News&Notes e-newsletter has been honored with the coveted ALL STAR AWARD from Constant Contact.  

Honestly, when notified of the selection, we thought it a grand faux pas (on the part of Constant Contact). No way they could screw this up twice. I think our official response was, "Stop playin' Computer Chip!!!" 

But, the geeks at CC  assured  us - no fake news - award is legit (as it was the prior year). Criteria used to select this year's All Stars included content, level of engagement, open and click-through rates, and use of social sharing features.

As well as being an ALL STAR the last two years, News&Notes was recognized in 2017 with the "Best Use of Social Media" Award by the Maryland Tourism Coalition.  

Special thanks to our millions of fans (Okay, seven fans) for making N&N relevant.
 
Montpelier Mansion & Arts Center, Laurel

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TYLER HENRY - THE HOLLYWOOD MEDIUM
MGM National Harbor - April 30
 
Riversdale House Museum, Riverdale 

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APRIL - EXCITING HAPPENINGS ALL THIS MONTH IN PGC!
Experience.Expand.Explore! Extraordinary things are HAPPENING this month and every month in Prince George's. The colored banners throughout "News&Notes" are just some of the many events on tap. Click them for more information and VISIT US ONLINE - ExperiencePrinceGeorges.com (or on the ExplorePrinceGeorges mobile app) for extended listings of events, exhibitions, and performances for the entire family.
APRIL Events>>       
 
Show Place Arena, Upper Marlboro

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9200 Basil Court, Suite 101,  Largo, MD 20774
301.925.8300 |  visitorinfo@co.pg.md.us

 

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