MAY 2018

PGCTourism Newsletter
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. 
VIEW THE WAY IT WAS INTENDED. For optimal experience reading PGC Tourism News&Notes (which is in browser), simply CLICK the tab atop the newsletter. Thank you!
Open weekends (Fri, Sat, Sun) now thru May 28
Park open daily beginning May 29
(Water Park opens May 26)
The Clarice, Theatre Courtyard, UMD, College Park

Bold sign promoting Prince George's as a prime destination appears outside one of DCA's busiest terminals
Hey Prince George's...that's one BEAUTIFUL sign you have there!!! Planted with purpose, it's part of the CVB's comprehensive branding campaign, to elevate Prince George's County as one of the premiere destinations in the Mid-Atlantic and DC/B'more metroplex (among visitors, travelers, and decision-makers). 

The latest round in our continuing efforts hit Reagan National Airport (DCA) last month. The colorful, lit corner-unit sign (off the busy entrance to Terminal C) will be on display thru mid May. This is one of a series of sign flights the CVB has placed at Reagan and BWI within the last eight months. Each positioned in high-traffic locations around both airports.
The Clarice, Theatre Courtyard, UMD, College Park

Brentwood Arts Exchange, Brentwood

Vintage manor house, expansive grounds will become Wellspring Manor & Spa, expected to debut late summer...
Could a B&B be in the Upper Marlboro/Largo corridor's future? Darn skippy.

Renovations are underway to transform a majestic manor in Upper Marlboro into the WELLSPRING MANOR & SPA

Hiding in plain site. Tucked away on a tranquil 7+ acre setting on Drumsheugh Lane, just off Largo Road. It's minutes from the Capital Beltway, easily accessible from every direction. 

The 5 bedroom, 5.2 bath, 4 fireplace, 4 level manor is listed as being built in 1953, But, its classic lines, detail, and original amenities (not normally found in such homes during that time) suggest it may actually be from a more regal period. The grounds included terraced areas, lounge spaces, and a pool. Plans include incorporating walking paths that take advantage of the property's serene nature.   

Prior to its sale this year (to Team Wellspring), it was owned by a property management company based in Ellicott City, and actually sat vacant for several years. In a unique trivia twist - the prop was once owned by Larry Hogan, the current Governor of Merry-Land, back in the early '90s. 

The new owners (more on them in a second) believe this is something long overdue. The plan is grand. A place where luxury and elegance meet. An oasis of peace, quiet, and rejuvenation created for guests seeking a relaxing, luxury, all-inclusive bed and breakfast destination where guests can reconnect with each other and unplug from the cares of life.

Wellspring is projected to open this summer (late July, early August). The official website is currently under development and should populate soon. In the meantime, updates are avail thru their Facebook and Twitter connects. 

OK, SO WHO IS WELLSPRING? Wellspring Manor & Spa is an endeavor from the owner/operator, husband/wife team of Lisa & Kevin Alexander. Lisa Alexander is a noted speaker, author, and Founder/Prez/CEO of Nonprofit HR, the leading human resources firm in the country (working exclusively with the nonprofit sector). Kevin Alexander is an executive with Travelers Insurance. In his alternative life, he is the founder and driving force behind the popular Lake Arbor Jazz Festival, now in its 9th year. Lisa and Kevin are also proud Prince George's County residents.  
Publick Playhouse, Cheverly

Temptations & Four Tops - MGM National Harbor - May 4
Hard Bargain Farm, Alice Ferguson Foundation, Accokeek

Food fantastic, fun galore as the county presents the first Food Truck Frenzy on May 5th...
Keep On Truckin'...  The first-ever Prince George's County FOOD TRUCK FRENZY (FTF) will be held May 5, 11-3 pm, at Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro.

Just in time to celebrate Cinco De Mayo, FTF is a family-friendly event featuring great food, fun games and activities for kids, and music.

Make a day of it. FTF is being held at one of Prince George's County's premiere parks. Watkins features the Antique Carousel, Miniature Train rides, Mini Golf, Old Maryland Farm, Watkins Nature Center, and one of the most amazing playgrounds you'll find in the region.   

The event is hosted by the DMV Food Truck Association, Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Commission, PGC Department of Parks & Recreation. Admission is free. 
Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier
Capital Wheel Pier, National Harbor

FOOD&WINE selects Vigilante Coffee as the state's #1 in tally of America's best brews...
Ummm. That's some good Joe, yo!  In the wide world of coffee, PGC has the right blend. The food fanatics at national culinary pub  Food&Wine   r ecently went full "grande" at  VIGILANTE COFFEE COMPANY  (VCC) , naming it Maryland's top cup for their  BEST COFFEE IN EVERY STATE .
VCC, known in dining circles as a premiere provider of fine roast, supplies many of the region's top-shelf restaurants. It's award-winning coffees are applauded across the DMV and Mid-Atlantic. So much so, that in 2017, EATER DC named it one of the 45 Essential Coffee Shops Across the DMV. And, in 2016, it made EATER's list of Nine Hot Spots for Coffee Tastings

PGC-based VCC has two home-grown locations that are always on perk. The mothership, the Vigilante Roastery & Cafe, is located in the Hyattsville Arts District at 4327 Gallatin Road. Its second, recently-opened shop, is at 8200 Baltimore Ave in College Park.     
The Clarice, UMD, College Park

Tom Jones - MGM National Harbor - May 6
Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier
Deluxe burg at Milkboy Arthouse named one of 11 tempting burgers you must try right now...
Speaking of EATER DC, here's some ground round.

The DC metroplex has big love for burgers. So, the food reviewers at EATER DC decided to delve into hamburger heaven again, and update their scroll of best burgs in the DMV. 

One of them is from Prince George's. The signature "Hangover Burger" at MILKBOY ARTHOUSE in College Park was named one of their  11 TEMPTING BURGERS TO TRY RIGHT NOW.  

Milkboy's Hangover Burger is a mound of sloppy deliciousness. A premiere patty (on the perfect bun) topped with fried egg, smoked bacon, pickled peppers, cheddar cheese, and chili mayo. We took a bite and it does not disappoint. 

HAPPY B'DAY TO YOU, ARTIE: Debuting May 2, 2017 on the College Park/Route 1 strip, Milkboy Arthouse can be best described as restaurant, bar, cafe, culture cave, and live-music venue all in one. A unique collabo between Pennsylvania-based art and entertainment company Milkboy Philadelphia, and the University of Maryland's Clarice Performing Arts Center (The Clarice). It features 100-seat lounge, a 3,000+ sqft performance space, and dedicated gallery space showcasing local and emerging artists. The food's great, cocktails are tight, and their craft beer selection is pretty darn good too. 
The Clarice, UMD, College Park

Jazz Singer Sharon Clark - LIVE! @ Montpelier - May 11
Harmony Hall Arts Center, Fort Washington

New system, largest in the state, will reduce the prop's Greenhouse Gas emissions by over 60%...
Its about being a responsible world citizen - that's Gaylord National. 

When you're the largest, non-gaming hotel and convention center on the East Coast, with a 41-acre wingspan, 1.5 acre glass atrium rising 19 stories, 2k guest rooms, multiple dining options, retail mix, rooftop lounge, nightly fountain shows, world-class spa, over 600k sqft of exhibition and meeting space, and a host of other amenities - you can't help but drink a substantial amount of electrical juice. 

So, in its ongoing efforts to be sustainable and protect the environment, GAYLORD NATIONAL RESORT & CONVENTION CENTER has contracted a six megawatt combined heat and power (CHP) system that will dramatically reduce its carbon footprint.   

"We have been working on this project for the past two years," said Derek Brauner, director of engineering at Gaylord National Resort. "The generators help to take pressure off an already strained electrical grid, which will reduce the need for additional power plants and benefit the overall environment."
The new system, which is the largest CHP system using reciprocating engines in the state of Maryland, will cover approximately 64% of the facilities peak electrical demand and 90% of its annual electrical consumption. This will result in approximately a 63% reduction of its Greenhouse Gas emissions.
Waste heat from the system (comprised of three 2000kW natural gas engines) will be used for domestic water and space heating of the resort.

Thank you GNat. 10 years young, and looking better than ever. Part of the Pride of Prince George's!
Prince George's African American Museum & Cultural Center, North Brentwood

Boyz II Men - MGM National Harbor - May 13
Gateway Arts District

Old Maryland Grill at the Hotel @ the UMD gains another honor, named to "new dine" top ten...
OMG!!! In the Washington Post's 2018 Spring Dining Guide Top 10 countdown, a PGC favorite is named as one of the ten best new restaurants in the DMV. To make the illustrious list is a "wow moment" considering the shear number of outstanding dines that have opened across the metroplex. 

Two forks up for OLD MARYLAND GRILL (OMG). Located in the luxe HOTEL at the University of Maryland, OMG features a robust menu of classic and contemporary cuisine - celebrating the rich agricultural history and culture of Maryland. And, that same character extends to their truly amazing selection of regional wines and craft beers.   

Here's what Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema had to say...
Bowie Center for the Performing Arts, Bowie

The Clarice, UMD, College Park

Greenbelt-based national hotel company provides a helping hand to those in need thru its philanthropy...
We didn't have room for this in our last issue, but great news never dies.  A shout-out to our friends at BAYWOOD HOTELS.

The PGC-based hotel management company (with over 100 properties across 16 states, DC, and India) partnered with five national organizations in an effort to make a difference. In all, Baywood contributed $101,000 to lend support to hotels, employees and local communities/areas distressed by recent national disasters. 

WHERE IT ALL BEGAN: Baywood Hotels was established in 1975 with one independent motel in Laurel. The company now owns and operates over $1 billion in assets. With its corporate office in Greenbelt, MD, it also has regional offices in Herndon, VA, Miami, FL, San Antonio, TX, Pittsford, NY, and Aurora, CO. Its  portfolio includes well-known brands, such as Marriott, Hilton and InterContinental Hotels Group, as well as several independent brands. The company also employs over 2,500 associates nationwide.
Publick Playhouse, Cheverly

Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier
Historic Fort Washington Park, on the banks of the Potomac River, will see entry fees increase beginning Jan 2019...

It doesn't take a rocket scientist, landscaper, architect or engineer to notice that many of the country's National Parks have gotten a bit long in the tooth. The popularity of our national treasures, combined with consistent under-funding (that has never kept pace with visitation and usage), has created an upkeep backlog. To the tune of $11.6 billion in deferred maintenance across the systems parks, historic sites, cultural sites, and monuments. 

The National Park Service (NPS) hopes to remedy that (or, at least, start the remedy) with an "entry fee" increase at 117 National Parks over the next two years.  Locally, PGC's FORT WASHINGTON PARK will be affected. 

The increase at Fort Washington will be staged beginning January 1, 2019 & 2020. Per Person fee will go from $3 to [$7/2019, $10/2020]; Per Vehicle from $10 to [$15/2019, $20/2020]; and Per Motorcycle from $7 to [$10/2019, $15/2020].

SO...WHERE DOES IT GO? Of the  417 units in NPS, 117 parks charge an entrance fee . The Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (FLREA) allows the NPS to collect and retain revenue and requires that fee revenue be used to enhance the visitor experience. At least 80 percent of the money stays in the park where it is collected, and the other 20 percent is used to benefit parks that do not collect fees.
Bladensburg Waterfront Park, Bladensburg

Publick Playhouse, Cheverly

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.
MAY Events>>    
Laurel Mill Playhouse, Laurel
Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier
Prince George's County Tourism's impact - thru visitation and taxes generated - runs across every aspect of development including lodging, food & beverage, retail, recreation, major events, transportation, and transportation-related services.
  • Visitors - 6.922 million
  • Visits by Type - 52% Day; 48% Overnight
  • Visitor Growth Rate - 6.2%
  • Total Tourism Employment - 32,726
  • Tourism Industry Sales - $2.612 billion
  • Room Taxes Collected - $28.8 million
  • Admission/Amusement Taxes Collected - $16.7 million
  • Total Tourism Tax Receipts (combined Federal, State/Local, Hotel) - $638 million
Source: Tourism Economics, December 2016
Publick Playhouse, Cheverly

World Championship Boxing - MGM National Harbor - May 19
Show Place Arena, Upper Marlboro
Comedian Nick Swardson - MGM National Harbor - May 20
9200 Basil Court, Suite 101,  Largo, MD 20774
301.925.8300 |  visitorinfo@co.pg.md.us


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