James Rada, Jr.
Thurmont got its day before the camera as Good Day DC on FOX 5 in Washington, D.C., spent the morning of July 13, 2018, filming in town. The hosts and crew of the television show traveled to Thurmont and broadcasted from various locations around the town from 6:00-11:00 a.m.
“Our whole purpose in participating was to expose Thurmont and north county to millions of viewers,” said Vickie Grinder, economic development manager for Thurmont.
To be considered for one of the “zip trips,” Grinder had to submit a portfolio of information about Thurmont to FOX 5 last year. It included a list of events, history of the town, places to visit, and much more.
“It was a lot, but as a town, we had all these great things to show them,” explained Grinder.
The announcement of the 15 trips was made in May. One location is visited each Friday during the summer. Grinder said that to the best of her knowledge, Thurmont is the smallest town that the crew has visited. “Thurmont shined just as much, if not more than those larger places.”
Zip Trips showcase local restaurants, schools, and businesses. They interview members of the community who come out to watch the broadcast and host lots of activities.
Hosts Tucker Barnes, Maureen Umeh, and Annie Yu set up their central location at the open field next to PNC Bank on East Main Street.
Some of the other locations and people featured were: Mechanicstown Park; Gateway Brass Ensemble, directed by Morris Blake; Linda Elower, ESP dance director; Timeless Trends; Eyler Family Stables; Cunningham Falls State Park; Thurmont Police Chief Greg Eyler; Mayor John Kinnaird; Josh Bollinger, Bollinger’s Family Restaurant; Tony Testa, Rocky’s Pizza; Cindy Grimes, J&B Real Estate; Thurmont Little League coaches and players; and Sam Feng, owner of Simply Asia.
Kinnaird was quizzed on Thurmont trivia, although he was given the questions and answers ahead of time.
“I think I would have scored 100 percent even without the answers,” stated Kinnaird.
The eventual hope of Grinder and Kinnaird is that people will see the segments about Thurmont and decide to visit. The afternoon of the broadcast, Grinder heard that someone had seen the show and visited Eyler Family Stables Flea Market, which was included in a list of the five stops that visitors need to make while in Thurmont. Grinder also said that during the weekend after the broadcast she received five emails requesting more information about the town.
Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird poses with FOX 5 Good Day DC’s Annie Yu and Maureen Umeh at the filming in Thurmont on the morning of July 13, 2018.
Photo Courtesy of Kinnairdimages.com