29 December 2012

The Annapolitan's Post-Holiday Etiquette Guidelines

The debate about whether or not Maryland is a southern state has not been resolved.

So it's up to you to decide whether or not the Free State is part of the South. But whether it is or not, we can all learn something from those deep southern states: a little hospitality and proper etiquette goes a long way. Here's how to incorporate traditional Southern etiquette into the post-holiday season...

1. Send thank-you notes in a timely manner to those who you received gifts from.

2. Be a gracious guest at New Year's Eve parties...
  • If the party you're going to is a small get-together, bring a hostess gift. A bottle of wine will do.
  • Know your limits. Don't be that obnoxious drunk.
  • Do not overstay your welcome. Figure out sleeping arrangements before the party, and designate a sober driver if needed.
  • If there is a dress code, make sure you abide by it!

3. Reciprocate kind gestures. This is a general rule that should be applied to every situation, especially during the holidays.

4. Tip service workers during the holiday season.

Stay classy, Annapolitans! Have a great New Year's Eve, and best wishes to all of you for 2013.

27 November 2012

Six Stocking Stuffers for the Annapolitan

This is the Annapolitan's dream stocking...

1. Cruiseys.
$5 each, TheCruisey.com
This absolutely ingenious item is a coozie you can wear around your neck. As Annapolitan company owners Bridget and Kate eloquently stated, “it can be a little tricky to trim the jib, raise the chute, and tack while sipping on our favorite beverage.” With appropriate sayings like “Get nauti”, “Yachta yachta yachta”, and “Ship shape”, this is the perfect gift for your favorite sailor’s stocking!

2. Annapolitan bottle opener.
$20, Etsy
This beautiful bottle opener displays a small map of Annapolis, perfect for any Annapolitan beer drinker.

3. Crab mallet with attached bottle opener.
$23.50/bucket of five mallets, Etsy
Opening a cold brewski while picking crabs just got a whole lot easier. This mallet features delicate nautical detail and an attached bottle opener.

4. Natty Boh stickers.
$3.49 each, NattyBohGear.com
Because who doesn't need a Natty Boh sticker?

5. Old Bay.
This is an especially appropriate gift to give to out-of-state friends or relatives who may not have heard of Old Bay or understand its sheer greatness.

6. Maryland flag keychain.
It's no secret that we have one of the best state flags in the nation. This is a great gift for anyone who is proud to be a Marylander!


The Annapolitan

25 November 2012

Holiday Gift Guide: Annapolitan Guy

Before we get into this post, I have some exciting news!

The Annapolitan is now a dual-author blog! In order to broaden readership, I thought it would be beneficial to get a guy's perspective.

I am super excited to welcome Naptown Gent as a co-author! His first blog post detailing the ideal gifts for your favorite Annapolitan guy is as follows.


The Annapolitan

Holiday Gift Guide: Annapolitan Guy

1.  I really like the style of bomber hats, and they keep my ears really warm.

2. The always-classic Natty Boh shirt, a great way to represent your favorite beer while eating crabs in the summertime. Find them at NattyBohGear.com

3.  It’s essential to own a good suit, even though you may only wear it a few times a year.  J. Crew has some great styles in the Ludlow line.

4. A great tie for those office or family Christmas parties to show your Christmas spirit with a little bit style and class. This is just one of many that Vineyard Vines has on their website.

5. Over the past few years, we have had some intense snowstorms (who knows what this year will bring), it would be great to have one of these Helly Hansen snow jackets to dig your car out or hit the slopes.

6. Maker's Mark—enough said. On the rocks, please…

7.  A great casual wind-proof fleece by Mountain Hardware.  I own one of these and never leave the house without it.

8.  The traditional oxford plaid shirt, great to wear out by itself or with a solid color sweater.

9.  Another item I personally own. Sperry Topsider has made one heck of a boot that will compete with any brand out there.  They’re fleece-lined and waterproof—pair them with wool socks you will never be cold or wet.

10.  Of course when wearing a suit, it is a must to complete it with a pocket square. Not wearing a pocket square with your suit would be like not putting Old Bay on your crabs. Check out Brooks Brothers, J. Crew, and High Cotton.

11/16.  I mean if you don’t own one of these items you should probably just move to New Jersey. Find the belt at MarylandFlagBelts.com and the sunglasses at RouteOneApparel.com.

12.  A good way to stay warm and look good is a quarter-zip sweater. If you’re hanging out DTA at McGarvey’s on a Saturday night with your buds or at Charlie Brown’s with your favorite Annapolitian Girl…cant go wrong. Check out Vineyard Vines and Patagonia.

13. THE BEST SHAVE EVER. The Art of Shaving. Go to the store in the Annapolis Mall and get a sample kit; you will not be disappointed.

14. I should not have to explain the importance of having the classic Sperrys in your wardrobe. They go with everything.

15.  If you own a pea coat, you should have a scarf. The ladies will appreciate a guy that has good style and taste.

17. Fordham is GREAT BEER. I will see you at Rams Head on West Street. Cheers, and happy holidays!

-Naptown Gent

14 November 2012

What to Get Man's Best Friend for Christmas

While some people may think buying your dog a Christmas gift is silly or unnecessary, we Annapolitans know better.

It is VERY important to give your dog some extra love and attention during the holidays--after all, your dog is your best friend. Below is a compilation of items any Annapolitan dog would be ecstatic to receive.
What to Get Your Dog for Christmas


What to Get Your Best Friend for Christmas

Our last and probably best suggestion is to make your best friend's dream come true and make his Christmas unforgettable...

And I leave you with this quote:
"He might be only a part of your life, but for him, you are his everything, the only person in his whole life."


The Annapolitan

Annapolitan Christmas: Holiday Events in Annapolis

Lights on the Bay
Nov. 17 - Jan. 1, 5 - 10 p.m. at Sandy Point State Park
The annual Lights on the Bay will be held from 5 to 10 p.m. every night Nov. 17 through Jan. 1 at Sandy Point State Park near the Bay Bridge. It features a 2-mile scenic drive along the Chesapeake Bay with about 70 animated and stationary displays illuminating the roadway. Santa will make an appearance on Thanksgiving Day and every weekend through Dec. 24. Admission is $14 for cars, $28 for large passenger vans and for $50 buses. For more information, call 443-481-3161 or visit www.aahs.org.

Grand Illumination City Christmas Tree Lighting
November 25, 4 - 6 p.m. at the Market Space
This is the true kick-off of the holiday season. The ceremonial tree-lighting is an annual Annapolis tradition and is an indicator that you'd better get started on your Christmas shopping.

Jolly Express Cruise
November 30 - December 31* 
Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays
6, 7, & 8 p.m.
Departing from Annapolis City Dock 
*Except December 8
Also on Mon., Dec. 24 & Tues., Dec. 25th
Why not play tourist this year and take your out-of-state friends and family on a scenic cruise around the waterways of Annapolis? Enjoy a holiday inspired cruise aboard Miss Anne decked out in her finest holiday garb. This 45 minute cruise includes hot cocoa, holiday music and lots of cheer. Captain Santa is at the helm. See the sights of Spa Creek on this beautiful Winter cruise. Miss Anne's deck is enclosed as needed to keep passengers warm. $22/adult; $12/children 11 and under. Book here.

Midnight Madness
December 6 and 13, 6 p.m. - 12 a.m. downtown Annapolis
Come to the Downtown district in Annapolis to do some holiday shopping with festive music playing in the streets, street performers, and extended store hours.

Holiday Candlelight Stroll
December 7- 22*
Fridays & Saturdays
7 p.m.
Departing from Information Booth at Annapolis City Dock
*except December 8
Grab a cup of hot cocoa and join us for a Holiday Candlelight Stroll. Stroll the streets of Annapolis by candlelight with our Colonial guides. Learn about the origin of holiday traditions on this festive 1 hour tour. $16/Adults, $10/Children 3-11, 2 & under free. Book here.

Annapolis Boat Parade of Lights (put on by Eastport Yacht Club)
December 8, 6 p.m. in the Annapolis Harbor
Nothing gets me in the holiday spirit like watching a parade elaborately lit and decorated boats full of drunk Annapolitans cruise by on the water. Who knows, maybe I'll even be in the parade this year. ;)

Annapolitan Christmas

Things you can do anytime:
  • Bake and decorate Christmas cookies.
  • Go ice skating.
  • Send out Christmas cards! Check out The Paper Source in the Annapolis Towne Center (at Parole) for some inspiration.
  • Watch a Christmas movie--my favorite is The Santa Clause.
  • Have friends over for Christmas cocktails.
  • Make a gingerbread house.
The Annapolitan's favorite holiday traditions:
  • Read "The Night Before Christmas" on Christmas Eve.
  • See The Nutcracker at Maryland Hall (details here).
  • Make cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning.
  • Burn holiday candles.

The Annapolitan

12 November 2012

Holiday Gift Guide: Annapolitan Girl

Santa baby, I want a yacht and really that's not a lot...
Holiday Gift Guide: Annapolitan Girl
It's not even Thanksgiving yet, but we are running full speed toward Christmas. Starbucks has started serving its holiday drinks, Christmas music is becoming a common sound, and we have shrink wrapped our boats for the winter.

So you're probably starting to think about what you're going to get that special Annapolitan girl in your life for Christmas. Maybe it's your girlfriend; maybe it's your sister; maybe it's your best friend. Not to worry--I have a few ideas for you.

1. Sperrys. If she is a true Annapolitan, she probably already has Bluefish (the standard Sperry boat shoe you see everywhere), so look for varieties in color and material. There are lots of options--even a sequin covered shoe!

2. Anything monogrammed with her initials. This is a great gift because it's so personalized.

3. You really can't go wrong with jewelry. Pearls are always a great choice!

4. A scarf is a good gift for any girl. The one pictured is from Vineyard Vines.

5. Boutique cupcakes. Georgetown Cupcake is always a good bet, but if you can't make it to Georgetown and don't want to pay the delivery fee, check out JoJo's Cupcakes & Cream on Main Street. http://jojoscupcakesandcream.com/

6. A gift card to Starbucks, Victoria's Secret, or Sephora (depending on the girl you're buying for--obviously, it probably wouldn't be appropriate for a dude to buy his sister a VS gift card). But you really can't go wrong with this one.

7. Helly Hansen fleece. Any Annapolitan girl would be ecstatic to have one.

8. Perfume. This one can be tricky, but if you know the girl well enough, you can pull it off!

PRO TIP: Find out if she has a Pinterest account by going to www.pinterest.com and searching her name. If she does, you'll likely have a wish list of things she's dying to have right in front of you.

Good luck!


The Annapolitan

10 September 2012

Annapolis, Dogtown

I could sit here and list reasons why I love Annapolis all day.

From its historic charm to its preppy lifestyle, it's one of my favorite places in the country. But perhaps my favorite thing about Annapolis is its attitude toward dogs.

Walking downtown on any given day, you'll see puppies and dogs of all shapes and sizes exploring and making new friends. You'll see dog treats and water bowls outside of almost every store; you'll see boat dogs in Ego Alley; you'll usually pass Helly Hansen's chocolate lab, Ella, basking in the sun.

Dogs love Annapolis, and Annapolis loves dogs.


The Annapolitan

24 July 2012

Entertaining in College

Staying with a gracious and prepared host/hostess is always enjoyable.
Entertaining in College: The Perfect Guest Basket

Maybe you have friends coming from out of town to stay with you for the weekend, or maybe your friend from down the street is sleeping over for the night. In any case, you never want to be that host that doesn't have any good food, forgot to buy toilet paper, or didn't wash the towels.

Guest basket. Even if you just have a small apartment, why not keep a guest basket on hand for the bathroom? You'll want to let your guest(s) know that this basket is for them so they don't feel like they're intruding. Here are a few ideas to get you started...

  1. Clean towels and washcloths. This is especially important--you wouldn't want your guest to get out of the shower only to find that there are no towels for him/her.
  2. Water, Dove chocolates, gum. Just a few fun ideas.
  3. Toiletries. This should include extra toothbrushes, floss, disposable razors, a contacts case, and saline solution.
  4. Individual makeup remover wipes. You can buy these at Sephora.
  5. Condoms and tampons to avoid any awkward moments.
  6. Excedrin, Tylenol, and ibuprofen for hangovers.
You can also add sample size shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, soap, etc., but I'm just going to assume those items are already in the shower.

Kitchen. You'll want to always have your kitchen stocked with the basics--bread, milk, eggs, butter, cereal, snacks.


  • Stock your bathroom with toilet paper, and make sure you always have extra.
  • Always have beer, wine, and vodka--emphasis on beer if you're having guys over. This is college.
  • If you don't have an extra bed available for your guest(s), keep a futon under your bed with extra sheets, blankets, and pillows on hand. If your roommate will be away and makes his/her bed available to your guest(s), make sure you wash the bedding afterwards. It's the respectful thing to do.
Most importantly, a truly good host/hostess will make sure his/her guest is comfortable, make introductions, and show his/her guest a good time.


The Annapolitan

20 July 2012

Currently Coveting: Smith Island Cake

If you've never had Smith Island Cake, you're seriously missing out as a Marylander.

Smith Island Cake is a local delicacy that started on Smith Island in Somerset County, Md. The cake typically has 8-15 thin layers filled with frosting or creme. According to Wikipedia, beginning in the 1800s, Smith Islanders sent the cakes with the watermelon on the autumn oyster harvest. The most common flavor is yellow cake with chocolate icing, but there is a plethora of varieties. As of 2008, Smith Island Cake is the official dessert of Maryland.

Boatyard Bar & Grill carries Smith Island Cake, and you can also order them online from the Original Smith Island Cake Co.


The Annapolitan

How Do You Describe Annapolis?

The UrbanDictionary.com definition of Annapolis is as follows:

"Perhaps the classiest of preppy hometowns. Big homes with rolling lawns, or even better, no lawn in the historic district, are arguably the most coveted properties on the east coast. Kids are raised with a crab net in one hand and a lax stick in the other. Best of all, only the insiders know about Annapolis and it's prestige can only be realized through the insider's reaction. If a kid reveals he's from Annapolis, check your friends' reactions. Someone is bound to know just how privileged he is. And if you don't...well, maybe you should. But we don't like to brag, that's not how its done in the South.

frat boy #1: Who's that girl shotgunning beers?
frat boy #2: What?
frat boy #1: The hot one, in the polo.
frat boy #2: Oh some laxer, I heard she's from Annapolis.
frat boy #1: Damn.

The example at the end especially made me laugh. This post also made me think...how does one describe such a unique town? Walking around downtown, you might see a group of preppy girls, some lacrosse players, midshipmen, dog walkers, and middle-aged yacht owners. If you look closer, you might see some scattered hipsters, Johnnies, a longboarding crew, and coffee shop hermits.

There are certainly some characters in the town of Annapolis that defy its classic, long-standing reputation of WASPy prestige--it's almost like there are two sides to the Annapolitan image. Or maybe many; who am I to say?

The point is, the contrast and diversity of people in Annapolis add to its charm and make it that much more welcoming and unique. That, and our abundance of blue crabs and attractive lacrosse players...I mean, what more could you want? ;)


The Annapolitan

17 May 2012

Trend: Wedges

I love visiting other parts of the country.

I always come back with some kind of new obsession, whether it's a new slang word, fashion trend, or food.

Last weekend, I went south to a cute little college town. Upon entering a bar, I noticed that almost every single girl was wearing wedges. I feel like this trend hasn't really taken off in Annapolis yet, so I'm bringing it north!

Wedges are so versatile. They're perfect for when you have a great outfit together but don't know what shoes to wear. They can also be dressed up or down for night or day activities.

Here are some of my favorites:

10 April 2012

Event: Annapolis Cup a.k.a. the Drunkest Lawn Party of the Year

Annapolis Cup, the annual croquet match between the U.S. Naval Academy and St. John's College, is one of those events that Annapolitans look forward to all year.

It's the biggest, drunkest, preppiest lawn party of the year, complete with southern belle dresses, bowties, and big, floppy hats. College Avenue is practically completely blocked off, and the whole town is a blur of Lilly Pulitzer and Vineyard Vines. So break out your cardigan and your pearls, because Annapolis Cup 2012 is going to be a great time.

There is one minor detail, however: Annapolis Cup will not be allowing outside alcohol into the event this year. Beer, wine, and champagne will be available for cash purchase once you have entered the event. Just because Annapolis Cup has sobered up doesn't mean you have to, though--it just means you have to get that much more smashed beforehand.

There really is nothing quite like dressing up and getting drunk with your best friends while looking at hot midshipmen. Get ready for Annapolis Cup 2012.

Annapolis Cup will take place on April 28th at 1:00 p.m. this year. For event information, click here

Here are some pictures from previous Annapolis Cups to get you pumped. See you there!

The Annapolitan

The Annapolitan's Campus Essentials

There are certain things every college girl needs.

After attending a very big university, I can tell you what they are. Campus Essentials

1. A versatile bag. Sometimes a backpack is too much, but you're not dressed up enough to carry a fancy purse. These are the times when a big nylon bag is great to have. You'll want to choose a neutral color that will go with almost anything, and it's best if it is big enough to carry your laptop in. And a bonus: they're waterproof!

2. A raincoat. You never know when you'll need it.

3. Yoga pants and leggings. For those days when you just don't feel like dressing up for class (which will most likely be every day).

4. A good backpack. Choose something you LOVE because you'll be using it all the time. I bought a North Face backpack before I left for school, and it's the best investment I've ever made. It comes complete with a laptop sleeve and a rain cover. See the one I have here.

5. Comfortable shoes. You'll be trekking all around campus, so make sure you have good, supportive shoes that won't leave you with blisters. My Sperrys were pretty comfortable once they were broken in, but I endured a few weeks of painful blisters as a sacrifice.

6. Tumblers and refillable water bottles. To keep you hydrated, healthy, and eco-friendly. Just don't forget to wash them out periodically!