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James Rada, Jr.

From the size of the crowd that lined the streets of Thurmont to see the Thurmont Little League team pass by, you might have thought the team won the Little League World Series, rather than finishing as runner up at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Tournament in Bristol, Connecticut. It didn’t matter. These boys were hometown heroes and Thurmont loved them.

“It was awesome to see the whole town come out,” recalled Donovan Baker, who played right field for the team. “Even though we lost, we still felt like town heroes.”

The team finished its best season ever, going 11-2 and taking their winning ways further post season than any other Thurmont Little League team has since 2005, when the team finished third in the regionals. The team went 3-2 in the regional tournament, but lost 8-3 in the championship to the team from Holbrook, New Jersey.

“These boys are competitors,” said Coach Ed Lowry. “We lost our very first game out of the gate in the Mid-Atlantic tournament. Every game from that point forward was an elimination game. Win or go home. These boys managed to win three games in a row, and send three different states home from the tournament.” Lowry further expressed that the boys were naturally competitive and praised their ability to handle the high-pressure situation they found themselves in. “They have faced adversity and overcame. The ability to handle pressure situations (national media and audience) and let their competitive nature take over will be characteristics they can build on as they develop into fine young men.”

The boys did more than perform under pressure; they enjoyed it. Second baseman Braden Manning said, “We work so well together.”

The team also felt that they could have won against New Jersey, but they had an off- day that cost them.

“I knew we’d win district this year,” said Centerfielder Peyton Castellow. “I thought we’d win states, and beating Berlin a second time was great. Our bats were just not working like normal at the regionals.”

Lowry said that a favorite moment for fans was when the coaches brought in Peyton to pitch during the championship game.

“It was a beautiful thing to watch as he pitched a phenomenal game,” Lowry said. “We all know Peyton’s abilities and competitive nature locally. We were not surprised. He is an outstanding talent. At that point in the game, it became about much more than just baseball.”  Lowry said that it showed that size didn’t matter. It was about being the best player that you can be, and Peyton did just that.

One memory that the boys took away from the game was that they were playing for a national audience on ESPN. “It was cool being on ESPN,” said Braden. They will also always remember how fervently Thurmont supported them. “The town supported us a lot, and it was pretty cool.”

As part of that support, the team received two proclamations, one from the town and the other from Frederick County. The Town of Thurmont declared August 21-27 as Thurmont Little League Week, and the county declared August 17 as Thurmont Little League Day.

Because of the boys’ ages, they will be moving onto different leagues as they continue to play baseball, but they are certain to be an asset to whatever team they play for.

“They are a special group of boys, and I couldn’t be more proud to be one of their coaches,” expressed Lowry.

To help the Thurmont Little League defray their travel costs in their post-season play, the entire team signed twelve baseballs and two bats. They will be auctioned off, with all of the proceeds going to the Thurmont Little League. If you are interested in bidding for a piece of Thurmont history, e-mail Mayor John Kinnaird at Include either “Ball” or “Bat” in the subject line. There is minimum bid of $25 per ball and $50 per bat. The auction ends at 6:00 p.m. on September 11, 2017. The winners will be announced at the town meeting on September 12. You can also call Kinnaird at 301-606-9458 with any questions.

Deb Abraham Spalding

“Russell is the muscle, and Chris is the hustle!” That was the mantra in the promotional commercials for the premiere of the new Discovery Channel television reality series, Garage Rehab with Richard Rawlings that debuted August 30, 2017, at 10:00 p.m. The reference to Chris in the commercial is Chris Stephens, co-owner of Eurotech Classics, a vintage European auto shop on Putman Road in Thurmont. Russell is Russell Homes, a construction project manager from Long Island, New York. Chris and Russell are co-hosts to Richard Rawlings on this series, during which, the trio visits nine struggling auto repair garages around the country, invests money in them, and helps the owners rehab their businesses for success.

Rawlings is known for his Gas Monkey Garage and the Discovery Channel’s hit show, Fast and Loud. He lends his business savvy and marketing guru ideas to each project. Russell Homes is project manager for shop renovation and construction, and Chris evaluates marketing and the finished look of each project. These auto garages need help with equipment, construction, marketing, management—and everything you can imagine—to fine-tune the business for profit.

Even though Chris thought it would be cool to be on television one day, he didn’t work towards that. His business partner and brother, Marc Stephens, saw a Facebook post where the Discovery Network was seeking successful shop owners to co-host a new Discovery Channel idea. The brothers applied individually. Neither knew what Discovery was looking for, so they filmed some Skype interviews, showing their shop and giving their background and history. Chris was contacted to do the pilot for the show.

Chris feels this is an opportunity to give back to society, “It’s such a good feeling to be able to help others, owner to owner,” he explained, “I know what it’s like to run a business, especially when it’s down, cause I’ve been down, too.”

“Sometimes shop owners are hard-headed, sometimes they have too much clutter around the shop, or it’s poorly lit. Sometimes a shop owner is making a little money, but could be making a lot more,” stated Chris. This series helps the owners become successful and educates garage owner viewers about how to become successful as well.

Nine garages were rehabbed in the ten episodes that will air this fall in season one. The final episode will look back to review the progress of each shop. The nine shops helped in the Garage Rehab series have had immediate results from their rehab. “The garage needs to be clean and tidy with service that is consistent. You don’t want to show a bunch of junk cars sitting around,” explained Chris.

Chris and Marc started their business, Eurotech Classics, in 2003 in Jefferson, Maryland. They moved the business to downtown Frederick, on East Church Street, in 2010. Business was going well in Frederick, but the brothers needed more outdoor space and found it in Thurmont where they rehabbed their own shop space to reflect their goal of customer satisfaction.

The Stephens brothers grew up in Montgomery County, Maryland. Chris’ first car was a 1975 Porsche 914 that he bought when he was fifteen years old. It took him two years to restore it. By the time he was twenty, his brother Marc was a Volkswagen Master Certified Technician, and Chris was taking business classes at Montgomery College. When faced with the choice to attend a university or to open a shop, they opened their shop. Chris said, “Being true car guys, there’s no room for sports or other stuff. We’ve always been car guys. Growing up, on the weekends we’d go to race events, car shows, work on building cars, and travel for parts and old vintage stuff.”

Eurotech Classics focuses on the restoration of European cars and everyday maintenance of newer European autos. Chris was away from the shop for about eight months for filming all across the country when the show was picked up, so they’ve narrowed their scope of service to allow his travel, with Marc running the shop by himself. Locally, their goal is to cultivate a life-time customer with their service philosophy and clean shop.

With the televised debut of Garage Rehab, they anticipate that people will want to see their shop, and car enthusiasts will want to see what cars they have, talk about their cars, and explain their cars. Chris and Mark are planning a car show get-together this fall at the Eurotech Classics. They welcome residents in Thurmont, Frederick County, and surrounding areas to visit.

To watch Garage Rehab wherever you go, install the Discovery Go app on your device. Visit for more information about Garage Rehab. Visit or call 240-288-7998 for more information about Eurotech Classics.


August 2017
by James Rada, Jr.
Town Election Coming Up
The Emmitsburg Town Election will be held on Tuesday, September 26. Registered voters in Emmitsburg will be able to vote for mayor and one commissioner seat, from 7:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. Votes can be cast at 22 East Main Street.
As of August 8, only Don Briggs had registered to run for mayor, and Jennifer Joy had registered to run for commissioner. While the deadline for filing to run will have passed by the time this is published, September 19 is the deadline for write-in candidates.

Briggs Starts Mayor’s Corner
Mayor Don Briggs has started posting short videos called “Mayor’s Corner” on the Town of Emmitsburg YouTube channel. The first video, which runs just under eight minutes, is a recap of what is happening in town and a look at some upcoming events, as well as a review of the upcoming town meeting agenda.

Hydrants Getting Painted
The Boy Scouts will be working in conjunction with Emmitsburg town staff to paint about fifty fire hydrants in and around Emmitsburg.

Planning and Zoning Appointments
Pat Boyle and John Howard were reappointed to the Emmitsburg Planning and Zoning Commission in August. However, Boyle is expected to serve only until the first of the new year. At that time, he will step down, and Wayne Slaughter is expected to take over his duties.

Amendments to Public Services Ordinances Discussed
The Emmitsburg Town Commissioners discussed some proposed changes to the town ordinances Title 13 Public Services. Some of the changes would codify where the town assumes responsibility for repairs to the water and sewer lines and make it consistent throughout Emmitsburg. Other changes would place more responsibility on the property owner to maintain water meters on their property, such as not allowing them to freeze.
These changes will be voted on in a future meeting.

Zoning Ordinance Changes to Have Public Hearing
The Thurmont Planning and Zoning Commission prepared their opinion on proposed zoning changes. One involves residential clustering that “allows for zoned property to group the actual building in one segment of the zoning area without breaching what is allowed,” according to Chief Administrative Office James Humerick. He added that it is used in subdivisions to allow for smaller lot sizes, while maintaining the same density in that district. The other issue had to do with signage in town.
Both of these issues will have a public hearing this month, and you can find out more information about them from the Thurmont Town Office.

Thurmont’s New Police Officer
Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird swore in Thurmont’s newest police officer, Christopher Smith, on August 8. He is a native of Walkersville, and has served as a county correctional officer and a sheriff’s deputy.

Maggie Doll Makes Thurmont Proud
Maggie Doll of Gateway Liquors was presented with a “You Make Thurmont Proud” certificate on August 8, for winning Frederick Magazine’s Best of the Best Reader’s Choice Awards, and Gateway Liquors for “Best Liquor Store in Frederick County.”

Kathy Toomey Makes Thurmont Proud
Kathy Toomey, with the Thurmont Child Care Center, was presented with a “You Make Thurmont Proud” certificate on August 8. The Thurmont Child Care Center was voted one of the five awardees in the 2017 “Best Places To Work” in Frederick County by Frederick County Work Force Services, the Frederick Chamber, Frederick County Office of Economic Development, and Thrive Frederick. The Frederick County Best Places to Work Awards campaign is a countywide program to increase the quality of life opportunities for Frederick County employees. Thurmont Child Care Center, Inc. won the Small Business category award.

New Town Brochure Available
A new Walk-Bike-Drive brochure is available highlighting points of interest in Thurmont and the area. Main Street Manager Vickie Grinder spearheaded the project, along with volunteers, Nancy Dutterer, Dick Lee, Joann Miller, Robert Eyler, and Joe Fontana. The group was recognized on August 8 by Thurmont Mayor and Commissioners, when the brochure was debuted. The brochure was funded by a TRIPP grant from Frederick County Tourism and Criswell Chevrolet, which paid the matching funds needed for the grant.

Applying for a Grant to Beautify Railroad Bridge
The Town of Thurmont is applying for a $20,000 Community Legacy grant through the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development to help refurbish the railroad bridge across North Church Street. The town will use results from a survey of area residents to help decide how the bridge should be refurbished. The bridge could have a mural painted across the abutment, LED lights with colors that could be changed for holidays, or painting the letters THURMONT across the bridge. Commissioner Martin Burns has been spearheading the efforts to find a way to use the bridge as a way to beautify the town.

Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird

This summer has been one we will remember for many years to come, thanks to the efforts of the Thurmont Little League 11-12 All Stars! The outstanding accomplishments of winning the District 2 Championship, followed by the Maryland State Title, then an amazing run at the Eastern Regional Playoffs in Connecticut, was a thing of wonder. It seemed that the majority of local residents were following the team, as they fought through each step of the way. Surprisingly, the team had followers from all over our state and across the nation. In speaking to them after they returned from the regionals, each of them expressed disappointment at the final loss, but all of them handled that outcome with the same grace and sportsmanship that they displayed on the field. We will judge future teams against the 2017 All Stars for seasons to come; but, win or lose, the Little League has taught these fine young men—and those that will come in the following years—that fair play and courtesy are both attributes we should aim for in our lives. It was a pleasure for Karen and I to follow the team in the playoffs, and we were overjoyed to see the support our communities showed them. I asked the team to autograph a dozen balls and two bats. These are being auctioned to the highest bidders. The minimum bid for a ball is $25.00 and the minimum for a bat is $50.00. You can bid by emailing me at; in the subject line, please indicate whether you are bidding on a ball or a bat. All proceeds will be used to reimburse travel expenses from the playoffs.

This next couple of months will bring us the return to school for our children, the Community Show, and Colorfest. Please be careful while driving; as the children return to school, they may not always be on the lookout for vehicles. School starts on September 5, and with it, comes school buses on our roads. Always stop when a bus is displaying its red lights and watch for kids crossing to get on the bus.

The Community Show will be held the weekend of September 8-10. Be sure to come out to enjoy all the agricultural displays, artwork, home grown vegetables and fruit, great food, and the cake auction, as well as the annual livestock sale.

We are getting ready for Colorfest and for all the visitors that the event brings to Thurmont. Colorfest provides many of our churches, service organizations, and nonprofits with their single-biggest fundraising event of the year. Be on the lookout for updates leading up to Colorfest, outlining any changes to traffic patterns and road closures.

As always, you can reach me at or by phone at 301-606-9458.

Emmitsburg Mayor Don Briggs

Seems like yesterday we bid farewell to graduating seniors from the Mount and Catoctin High…blink, and now we are welcoming incoming freshmen and returning upper-class students. Alas, the days are getting shorter and there is a changing of the guard of birds at our feeders.

A wonderful summer of youth baseball was provided by both the Cal Ripken League and the Little League. Congratulations to the Thurmont Little League team and coaches! Emmitsburg’s contribution includes Little League President and Coach Ed Lowry, players E.J. Lowry, Joe McMannis, Braden Manning, Donovan Baker, and Braden Bell. The team made it to the Little League Baseball® Mid-Atlantic Regional Tournament Championship game in Bristol, Connecticut, which was televised on ESPN. This is a time capsule event.

Catoctin High fall sports are in full swing, with Cody Staley and Will Bingman on the varsity football team, along with a JV team loaded with the talent and verve of Dylan Click, Jason Howard, Josh Maze, and Collin Martin. In another update, freshman granddaughter Aedan Myles and Kasia Bokinsky made the Catoctin JV volleyball team.

What a summer for town activities. Three Block Parties, a Family Fun Night, our deputies National Night Out, Christ Community Church “Back to School” party, and Community Heritage Day. We have a lot to look forward to next summer, with a new pool, a new dog park, and the completion of town connecting square revitalization-sidewalks project. The bridge will join the effort in late fall 2018.

To our neighbor to the northwest, Ronald J. Harris, Mayor, Borough of Carroll Valley: Congratulations on receiving the 2017 Pennsylvania State Mayors’ Association (PSMA) “Mayor of the Year” award.

A “work well done” pastoral farewell to Father John Holliday of St. Joseph’s Parish from the Emmitsburg Council of Churches and his parishioners. The good padre has been reassigned to be the student-chaplain at St. John’s University in New York. Peace and blessings.

After years of pleading with the county for more public transportation to Frederick City, Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird and I are working together in a change of tactic, asking for only one additional round trip during the noon hour. One round trip to complement the one existing round trip, down in the morning and back in the evening. The service would be far more attractive to users if they could return within four hours, instead of spending the day waiting for return service. I believe we are earnestly getting some traction this time around.

Quickly coming upon us is 36th Annual National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend on October 7-8, 2017. As in the past, thousands are expected to visit our town. It is an honor to be a part of this tribute, so let’s welcome all for this solemn event.

There they were, seventy-plus cyclists cruising through town during a scorcher of a weekend in late July, toward a respite at the 70th mile marker of their 100-mile trek, the Fire Heritage Center and Fire Museum, on South Seton Avenue. There, Wayne Powell and Frank Schmersahl, again for the fourth straight year, served water and other goodies, provided by the Pleasant Valley Fire Department in Carroll County. Annually, this fire department conducts, as a fundraiser, bike rides of 25 miles, 50 miles, and 100 miles through Western Carroll County and Northern Frederick County. Thank you, Wayne and Frank.

We are getting a lot of positive feedback after receiving the Maryland Green Registry “Leadership Award.” We will be doing more. More “Leadership” is on the way.

With Labor Day falling on the first Monday, the September town meeting will be held Tuesday, September 5, at 7:30 p.m.

Mark the calendar for the 61st Emmitsburg-Thurmont Community Show, September 8-10, at Catoctin High School.

New service to the area: Narcotics Anonymous. If you are recovering or temptations are mounting, you have friends, every Monday night at 7:00 p.m. at Christ Community Church, located at 303 W. Lincoln Avenue.

Emmitsburg Recovery Run 5K is September 16 at Emmitsburg Community Park. “Heroin Lies Recovery Run” contact /information:

Town Election Day is Tuesday, September 26, at the deputies building on East Main Street.

Have a wonderful Labor Day holiday!  Emmitsburg is a great place to live.

James Rada, Jr.

Morris Blake may not like to toot his own horn, but he is hoping that plenty of people in Thurmont like to toot theirs, whether it’s a trumpet, trombone, tuba, or another brass instrument. Blake is in the midst of starting both a brass band and choir for Thurmont.

“I think the town needed one, because the closest brass band to us is Frederick,” Blake said.

Not only is that a bit of a way to travel for band practice, but it makes the practices twice as long. As long as there is local interest, Blake sees no reason Thurmont can’t have a brass band. The town certainly has plenty of opportunities where a band could perform.

“Growing up here, I always had to travel to be part of a brass band,” Blake said.

While there is a community choir in Emmitsburg, Blake feels there is enough interest and talent in Thurmont to form another choir.

Blake plans on directing both groups. He has decades of experience playing instruments, singing, and directing musical groups. He first began playing an instrument as a young boy in 1982, when he started taking piano lessons. He has played trumpet, violin, saxophone, and drums. He is the current music director at the Fort Detrick Chapel.

“I’ve done nothing but music my entire life,” Blake said. It is the true love of his life.

Practices will be held on Sunday evenings in the Fort Detrick Chapel. The brass band will practice at 5:00 p.m., and the community choir will practice at 6:00 p.m.

His goal is to have eight to ten members in the brass band, and eighteen to twenty people in the community choir. Participants should be at least fifteen years old.

He expects both groups to be ready to perform for various Christmas activities.

If you are interested in participating, call Blake at 301-271-483

Come out for the 36th Annual Pippinfest on September 24-25, 2017, in historic Fairfield, Pennsylvania, for two days of fun, food, crafts, community yard sale, children’s activities, cruise-in car show, and much more. Admission and parking are free. View the advertisement on page 4 for more information.

This is the ninth in a series of the Thurmont Lions Club Christmas Ornaments. The 2017 ornament is near the end of production and will be ready for distribution early this fall. This year’s ornament, “Fitzgerald’s Shamrock Restaurant,” depicts a well-known, fifty-four-year-old family-owned and operated restaurant, located just north of Thurmont, along route 15. The Fitzgerald family has been in the restaurant business since the 1930s. Son, Mike Fitzgerald, and his wife, Doris, bought the present restaurant in 1963. They, along with their five sons and four daughters, grew up working in the restaurant. Eldest daughter Donna became manager straight out of college in 1971.

Once again, the ornament features the artwork of the very talented, local artist Rebecca Pearl. As in the past, this ornament is a limited-edition treasure, with only 400 produced, at a cost of $10.60 (tax included) and is expected to sell out. This ornament makes an excellent, thoughtful Christmas gift or host/hostess present. To order and reserve your 2017 Christmas Ornament, please call Lions Club member Joann Miller at 301- 271-3913. View the advertisement on page 37.

Support the Catoctin High School Class of 2018 Safe & Sane by coming out for their upcoming September fundraising events, including a Sportsman Raffle & Dinner on September 16, at the Emmitsburg Fire Hall; Dining for Dollars on September 1 at Roy Rogers in Thurmont and September 25 at Rocky’s Pizza in Thurmont (AYCE pizza, salad, and soda). View the advertisement on page 17 for ticket prices and more contact information.

Are you looking for a job? Would you like to change career paths? Mark you calendar for the Job Fair on October 9, 2017, from 1:00-4:00 p.m., at Mother Seton School in Emmitsburg. Meet employers, network with others, show off your skills, and more. The event is sponsored by Seton Center, Mount St. Mary’s University, and Frederick County Workforce Services. View the advertisement for more information on page 30.

Mark your calendars for these upcoming Thurmont Main Street Matinees (2:00-4:00 p.m.): September 9—Invisible; September 23—Going In Style; September 11 (special showing) at 7:00 p.m.—Patriots Day. Matinees are free, with free popcorn! View the advertisement on page 21 for more information.

The Green Grove Gardens Event Center in Greencastle, Pennsylvania invites you to enjoy a dinner show in honor of the late country singer, Patsy Cline’s birthday: September 8 (Patsy Cline’s birthday) and 15, 23, and 29. Kip and Dale Young of Forever Young Music perform this tribute show while diners enjoy a buffet. View the advertisement on page 48 for more information and for how to get your tickets today!

The James H. Mackley Golf Day, sponsored by Thurmont’s Guardian Hose Company, will be held Friday, September 22, 2017, at the Maple Run Golf Course, located at 13610 Moser Road in Thurmont. View the advertisement on page 8 for more information.