La Plata’s charm fea­tured dur­ing broad­cast visit

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By TIF­FANY WAT­SON twat­son@somd­news.com Twit­ter: @Tif­fIndyNews

Wash­ing­ton, D.C., broad­cast­ers Wis­dom Martin, left, and An­nie Yu, right, get ready to quiz Charles County Com­mis­sioner Ken Robin­son and the Mayor of La Plata Roy G. Hale on set at the FOX 5 Zip Trip to La Plata last Fri­day.

The Town of La Plata is home to many im­pres­sive sites like Til­gh­man Lake Park, Christ Church-Port To­bacco Par­ish, the Port To­bacco Play­ers and events such as the La Plata Fri­day Night Summer Con­cert Se­ries. It’s no won­der why the an­chors from FOX 5 “Good Day DC” re­cently brought their Zip Trip to La Plata to show­case some of the town’s lo­cal busi­nesses, or­ga­ni­za­tions and most in­trigu­ing sites.

On Aug. 5 between 6-11 a.m., tele­vi­sion an­chors Wis­dom Martin, An­nie Yu and Tucker Barnes broad­cast the FOX 5 Zip Trip, a weekly Fri­day se­ries that high­lights spots to visit around the Wash­ing­ton, D.C., metropolitan area, from La Plata Town Hall. Barnes stopped by House Bou­tique, Charles Street Bak­ery and Bernie’s Frame Shop be­fore vis­it­ing Is­land Mu­sic for a ukulele les­son.

“This is a great com­mu­nity to visit and we are not just a street that you drive down to get to work,” said Keith Grasso, pres­i­dent of the La Plata Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion. “We have a lot of awe­some things and it’s ex­cit­ing when there are peo­ple out and in the streets. For the La Plata Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion, this also helps us kick off our Rock­to­ber­fest and Shop La Plata cel­e­bra­tion com­ing this fall where we have the streets packed with peo­ple as well.”

Deb­o­rah Tay­lor, owner of Charles Street Bak­ery, was ex­cited about gain­ing even more ex­po­sure for her lo­cal busi­ness in La Plata dur­ing the broad­cast. She says per­se­ver­ance has kept her and her busi­ness run­ning for the last 14 years.

“You can bring in any cake de­sign and we can cre­ate it,” Tay­lor said. “Peo­ple love our cakes, lemon bars and great cus­tomer ser­vice. It’s com­fort food that’s also happy food and I get to do what I love to do. Plus all of the busi­nesses here in La Plata sup­port one an­other and we were able to share that with all of the D.C. metropolitan area to­day.”

South­ern Mary­land Mar­tial Arts & Fit­ness in La Plata was also fea­tured dur­ing the Zip Trip. The gym’s owner, Jeremy Grey, and mas­ter in­struc­tor Michael Nor­wood said the gym has been around for 25 years with both gym lo­ca­tions in La Plata and Bryans Road teach­ing a to­tal of 462 stu­dents. “Our gym is com­mu­nity-ori­ented and we pride our­selves on hav­ing some­thing for ev­ery­body in the com­mu­nity,” Grey said. “Our stu­dents have gone to col­lege, have great work ethics, and come back to be­come lead­ers in their own com­mu­nity as well.”

They also sam­pled food from Marie’s Diner, Pizza Hot­line and Galazio’s and en­joyed live mu­sic from the Mary­land Con­cert Band, acous­tic gui­tarist Tommy James and acous­tic gui­tarist Chris Dean.

Later on, the an­chors quizzed Mayor Roy G. Hale and Charles County Com­mis­sioner Ken Robin­son (D) in a game of trivia about the town and county. Af­ter both politi­cians an­swered all three ques­tions cor­rectly, they de­clared them very knowl­edge­able about county his­tor y.

“This kind of turnout is pretty amaz­ing and it’s such a di­verse crowd,” Robin­son said. “This re­ally is the pic­ture of Charles County. We are young, old, white, black, and we all love our county. I hope the en­tire Wash­ing­ton, D.C., metropolitan area got a good feel­ing about what the county is about. This is a com­mu­nity that’s to­gether, likes each other, likes liv­ing here and is proud of liv­ing here.”

“We faced ad­ver­sity 14 years ago with the tor­nado in 2002 de­stroy­ing so much of the town, but the com­mu­nity came to­gether af­ter that and re­built the town so that 14 years later, oth­ers can look around and you can’t see hardly any scars,” said Hale. “That took a lot of ef­fort, com­mu­nity ef­fort, and I hope oth­ers will see the small town at­mos­phere that we pro­mote.”

La Plata res­i­dent Crys­tal Ki­jesky at­tended the Zip Trip with her daugh­ters He­lena, 11, An­abelle, 8, and Sarah, 5, who are all dancers at the Studio Co­op­er­a­tive in Wal­dorf, where they at­tend bal­let, yoga and pi­lates classes. Crys­tal said her en­tire fam­ily loves liv­ing in La Plata.

“It’s such a beau­ti­ful day with lots of mu­sic and it’s a fun day for ev­ery­one here in the com­mu­nity,” He­lena said.

An­abelle is a self-pro­claimed lover of bal­let who said she en­joys play­ing at lo­cal parks and vis­it­ing the summer con­certs in the evenings at La Plata Town Hall.

Com­mis­sion­ers’ Pres­i­dent Peter Mur­phy (D) said he was truly proud to see the en­thu­si­asm and com­mu­nity spirit be­ing showed amongst at­ten­dees at the Zip Trip. He said the town’s his­tory and vi­brant com­mu­nity are a great rep­re­sen­ta­tion of Charles County.

STAFF PHOTO BY TIF­FANY WAT­SON

On Aug. 5, chan­nel 5 broad­cast­ers An­nie Yu, far right, and Wis­dom Martin, far left, pre­pare to quiz Charles County Com­mis­sioner Ken Robin­son and La Plata Mayor Roy G. Hale on set at the FOX 5 Zip Trip to La Plata.

STAFF PHO­TOS BY TIF­FANY WAT­SON

On Aug. 5, the FOX 5 Zip Trip stopped by Keith Grasso’s Is­land Mu­sic store in La Plata dur­ing their tour of the town.

On Aug. 5, the an­chors from the FOX 5 Zip Trip tasted cup­cakes at the Charles Street Bak­ery in La Plata dur­ing their tour of the town.

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