Maryland works towards Nipah virus vaccine

Maryland Business News - Mon, Jun 18, 2018

More than 8,000 miles away, a deadly outbreak is occurring that has already claimed the lives of 17 people. The Nipah virus – which is typically hosted in fruit bats and can spread to people and other animals – is impacting India and quarantining more than 1,000 residents to their homes.

After contracting Nipah virus, symptoms start off as flu-like with headaches and fever, but serious complications can occur including respiratory distress and brain inflammation, potentially leading to seizures or even coma. Currently, there is no known cure for the virus.

Here in Maryland, five organizations and biohealth companies are working to change that. The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine (HJF), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Uniformed Services University (USU), Profectus BioSciences, and Emergent BioSolutions are teaming up to develop a human vaccine and stop the virus in its tracks.

Profectus and Emergent have been awarded a $25 million contract from CEPI to combat the spreading disease. The Maryland-made vaccine would work not only on the Nipah virus, but the closely-related Hendra virus, both species of the genus Henipavirus. The treatment is based on technology created more than 15 years ago by members of the microbiology and immunology department at USU.

Mark G. Scher, Ph.D., HJF’s Director of Technology Transfer and Commercialization

HJF’s Director of Technology Transfer and Commercialization, Mark G. Scher, Ph.D., sat down with MDBizNews to answer a series of questions.

The vaccine is based on virus technology developed by Dr. Christopher Broder and Dr. Katharine Bossart, from the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, more than 15 years ago. Are they involved with this new development?
Dr. Broder continues to work with USU and will collaborate developing clinical testing for the Nipah virus vaccine response. Dr. Bossart is the founder and CEO of Integrated Research Associates, LLC, in San Rafael, California, and is no longer directly involved in the project.

How did these five organizations and biohealth companies team up to develop the vaccine?
The vaccine has been tested in multiple preclinical models and recently licensed to Profectus BioSciences by HJF to develop the human version of the vaccine. Dr. Broder began a collaboration with Dr. Antony Dimitrov of Profectus BioSciences to develop the human vaccine with financial support from the U.S. National Institutes of Health several years ago.

As a next step in the Nipah vaccine development program, Dr. Thomas Geisbert, a professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston National Laboratory, will conduct studies to evaluate vaccine effectiveness, and HJF, USU, and Profectus will collaborate on the development of clinical testing for the evaluation of the virus vaccine response.

Under the terms of the Framework Partnering Agreement for the collaboration among the three parties, Profectus will receive development funding from CEPI for advancing its Nipah virus vaccine and Emergent BioSolutions will provide technical and manufacturing support for the CEPI-funded program.

Emergent, through a separate agreement with Profectus, has an exclusive option to license and to assume control of development activities for the Nipah virus vaccine from Profectus. The international nonprofit health organization PATH will also be working with the group under a separate agreement with CEPI to conduct human clinical trials.

Was it easy to find the right project partners in Maryland’s growing science and technology industry?
Obviously – all of the talent for this collaboration was located within a short distance of each other, which is a credit to the availability of local public-private partnerships, to drive the translation of science from the bench to the bedside.

Can you tell us a little more about the experimental therapy doses that were recently transferred from Australia to India?
Due to the current outbreak, the Indian government requested that the government of Queensland, Australia, send them a supply of the experimental m102.4 human monoclonal antibody, the only known treatment against the virus, for compassionate use. In other words, compassionate use is treating a seriously ill patient using a new, unapproved drug, when no other treatments are available.

The m102.4 antibody producing cell line – developed by Dr. Boder and the USU microbiology department – was previously sent to Queensland after Australian residents were exposed to the Hendra virus, the sister virus to Nipah. Under additional agreements from HJF, Queensland produced the m102.4 and conducted a successful Phase 1 clinical trial showing the safety of the antibody in humans.

After receiving the request from the Indian government, HJF completed agreements with both the governments authorizing the transfer.

What is one thing the rest of the world needs to know about the Nipah virus outbreak?
The biggest issue with the Nipah virus outbreak in India – as well as the 2014 Ebola virus outbreak in Africa – is that the industry has not stepped up to develop the therapeutics and vaccines needed against these deadly threats, as it does not see a market for these products.

However, it is crucial to have stockpiled therapeutics and vaccines—which is why the CEPI initiative is so important. Hopefully, the industry will see the critical need for these life-saving products for deadly emerging diseases and initiate development programs.

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Categories: Maryland News

Maryland Father’s Day Favorites

Maryland Business News - Wed, Jun 6, 2018

For many Marylanders, memories of dad are scattered across the state. Casting a line into the Chesapeake Bay, the first bike ride without training wheels at Patterson Park, snow carving down Wisp’s bunny slope, or a white-knuckled highway driving lesson around I-695 come to mind.

These reminiscences are just some of the reasons to celebrate dad this Father’s Day. If you’re struggling with how to tell your father figure how much he really means, we are here to help. Here are a few of our favorite suggestions.

Fathers Seeking Adventure
Give dad a thrill this Father’s Day at Terrapin Adventures in Savage. Bond over zipline rides, a high ropes course, climbing tower, terrapin flyer, and giant swing. Book three or more participants for the day to enjoy a 33% discount.

Hit the high seas with dad aboard the Spirit of Baltimore for great food, music, and interactive games. Spirit Cruises is offering two-hour Father’s Day Brunch Cruises from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. as well as a dinner cruise from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 17. Cruises start at $59 per ticket. See the city skyline from Spirit’s rooftop lounge for a meal he will never forget.

The Stylish Dad
Homegrown in Baltimore City, Treason Toting’s line of handmade leather goods and apparel is perfect for the stylish dad. Featuring beautiful backpacks, totes, duffle bags, and home goods, you’re sure to find his unique style – along with free shipping.

Located in downtown Annapolis, Capital Custom Clothiers prides itself on crafting tailored pieces that provide style, substance, and comfort without breaking the bank. Treat dad to a suit, shirt, or outerwear that will last a lifetime. Give a gift certificate or go for a fitting and enjoy the day in Maryland’s beautiful capital.

The Competitor
Take dad to the green at The Golf Club at South River in Edgewater. From PGA professional lessons to an HD Golf Simulator, South River has everything the golf-loving dad could want. To give dad a membership gift, or to purchase the gear he’s always wanted, visit their website for more information.

Take dad to watch the Orioles take on the Marlins at Camden Yards on Father’s Day at 1:00 p.m. and score a free Father’s Day Neck Tie if you’re one of the first 20,000 fans to enter the stadium.

A Toast To Dad
In historic Sykesville, Patapsco Distilling offers vodka, gin and seasonal spirits made with only local, Maryland grains by Towson University graduate Scott Jendrek. Take dad to the historic, 4,000 square-foot space for a taste of this Maryland made product or to pick up a bottle for him as you explore Carroll County’s quaint main street.

The Flying Barrel, located in downtown Frederick, is a one-stop-shop for home brewers and wine makers. Since 1980, the company has provided brewing supplies, on-site beer brewing and wine making, and lessons on how to get started in this unique hobby. Flying Barrel is open from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays and 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Sundays. Bring dad for a brew lesson or pick up unique hops for his next blend.

Located at Harford County’s historic Highland Heights Farm, Falling Branch is a small farmhouse brewery dedicated to creating Belgian-style and American ales using homegrown ingredients. Take dad to sip on different pints bubbling with character as you enjoy the farm’s scenic rolling hills and barns. The taproom is open on Saturdays 12 to 8:00 p.m. and Sundays 12 to 6:00 p.m. Food vendors are on site with snacks available for purchase at the bar. The Beer Garden is open from April to November and features corn hole, a petting zoo, fire pit, and a kid’s game area.

Take a trip to Crofton for Chesepiooc Real Ale Brewery’s Father’s Day Beer Release on Sunday, June 17 from 12 to 5:00 p.m. The Triple Mango Milkshake NEIPA is a thick, hazy, and delicious draft-only limited brew curated especially for dad. Chesepiooc’s taproom is open from 1 to 10:00 p.m. on Saturdays and 12 to 5:00 p.m. on Sundays.

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Categories: Maryland News

Pirate ships set sail in Baltimore

Maryland Business News - Thu, May 31, 2018

This month we celebrated Baltimore City’s newest adventure, complete with pirate swords, bagpipes, and a blast from the USS Constellation’s cannon.

Twelve solar powered pirate ships are officially open for business at the Inner Harbor. The fleet, owned and managed by the Living Classrooms Foundation, will employ and inspire 50 young people with job training and hands-on education. Baltimore’s own Premier Rides helped design the ships, which can hold up to six pirates at one time.

Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill was on deck with Historic Ships in Baltimore Captain Chris Rowsom, Living Classrooms President James Bond, and Baltimore City Mayor Catherine Pugh to set sail the Inner Harbor’s first new tourist attraction in five years.

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Categories: Maryland News

McCormick: Mastering flavors for 125+ years

Maryland Business News - Tue, May 29, 2018

Lots of businesses have basement beginnings. But few go on to claim industry dominance and a journey in business that spans more than a century… like McCormick and Company.

Best known today for its iconic red-cap spices that line grocery store shelves and home pantries, McCormick had humble beginnings. Founder Willoughby McCormick started the company in the basement of a Baltimore home in 1889, and went door-to-door selling the company’s spices and extracts. Once the flavors of McCormick caught on, the company moved into more suitable Baltimore headquarters. From there, the company continued to expand rapidly, and has yet to slow down.

Read more about McCormick’s success in Maryland.

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Categories: Maryland News

14 Maryland companies named to annual Cybersecurity 500

Maryland Business News - Wed, May 23, 2018

Cybersecurity Ventures has released its first annual Cybersecurity 500 list, including 14 of Maryland’s hottest and most innovative companies.

The rankings, which were announced at the Cyber Investing Summit earlier this month, feature sectors ranging from social risk management, to data encryption, to cyber defense and digital forensics.

The companies named to the official Cybersecurity 500 are:

  • Lockheed Martin (Bethesda)
  • Tenable (Columbia)
  • Arxan (Bethesda)
  • ZeroFOX (Baltimore)
  • KEYW (Hanover)
  • Cybrary (Greenbelt)
  • IronNet Cybersecurity (Fulton)
  • Protenus (Baltimore)
  • TrustedKnight (Annapolis)
  • Terbium Labs (Baltimore)
  • Sonatype (Fulton)
  • EnVeil (Fulton)
  • BlueVoyant (College Park)
  • Silent Circle (Columbia)

“I am proud to see 14 of our most innovative businesses named to this year’s Cybersecurity 500,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill. “These cutting-edge companies help protect our computers, our businesses, our identities, our federal agencies, and beyond – and we are excited to see Cybersecurity Ventures recognize our talented tech workforce right here in Maryland.”

Two companies named to this year’s annual list are recent additions to Maryland’s IT and cybersecurity industry. BlueVoyant’s corporate headquarters is positioned in New York City, but with help from state funding, the company established a global cyber analytics center in Prince George’s County earlier this year. Silent Circle moved its headquarters to Howard County in 2017 after hiring CEO Gregg Smith, who previously led the Baltimore cybersecurity firm OptioLabs.

Learn more about how Maryland is wired for success.

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Categories: Maryland News

Henry S. Parker Athletic Complex celebrates expansion

Maryland Business News - Mon, May 21, 2018

Vanessa Junkin is the Assistant Director of Marketing and Public Relations for the Wicomico County Recreation, Parks, Tourism & Civic Center. Follow along with Wicomico on Facebook and Twitter.

On a sunny spring day, Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver opened the expanded Henry S. Parker Athletic Complex with a first pitch.

An Opening Day event took place earlier this spring to celebrate the completion of the complex expansion. High school baseball and softball players paraded onto Field 5 before Wicomico County Recreation, Parks & Tourism Director Steve Miller spoke about the project.

“Over the last year and a half, we have invested more than $3 million in this facility, renovating this field that you’re on, building brand new fields and adding many other park amenities to make this the best baseball/softball facility in the state of Maryland, and arguably in the region,” Miller said.

As part of the expansion, three new baseball/softball fields were created, bringing the complex’s total to eight diamonds, and one of the existing fields – Field 5, where the Opening Day ceremony was held – was rebuilt to feature a synthetic turf infield. Other additions include new press boxes, scoreboards, concession stands, and batting cages.

Photo courtesy of Wicomico County Recreation, Parks & Tourism

The complex is home to community recreation programs, as well as events like the United States Specialty Sports Association Eastern National Championships, which makes its 12th appearance at the facility this summer. The complex will also host the Youth Baseball Nationals tournament, coming to Wicomico County for the first time this year.

In addition to the more than $30 million economic impact of regional and national events, Miller said there will be plenty of opportunities for local residents to use the fields, including for high school and Eastern Shore Baseball League games, along with youth and adult softball and adult kickball.

“We’re just so thrilled to be able to offer this to the citizens as a benefit to our community,” Miller said.

To learn more about the Henry S. Parker Athletic Complex, visit

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Categories: Maryland News

Celebrating company milestones in Maryland

Maryland Business News - Thu, May 17, 2018

It’s hard to believe we’re nearly halfway through 2018 – and there’s no signs of slowing down any time soon. From San Francisco and Mexico City to Dubai and Singapore, the Commerce team has been traveling the world to promote our Open for Business climate and show off our assets to international companies and industry leaders.

But in between all the meetings and tradeshows, we haven’t forgotten about our companies right here at home. Below, we are highlighting 15 local businesses and educational institutions that are celebrating successes and milestone anniversaries in Maryland. Ranging from 10 years to more than a century, we are proud that these businesses call Maryland home.

Leading the way with major recent milestones is Morgan State University, which celebrated 150 years in 2017. We visited President David Wilson and the Morgan team earlier this year to express our gratitude for this Carnegie-classified doctoral research institution. As one of the nation’s premier Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Morgan continues its commitment to students by focusing on purpose, progress, and promise.

Following close behind is The Terminal Corporation with 125 years in business. This Baltimore-based company specializes in distribution and logistics, ensuring safety and on-time arrival, no matter the time or day. After a century in the biz, Terminal has mastered the moving game and continues to shine with its talented workforce.

Keep an eye out for more exciting anniversaries this year. If your company is celebrating a milestone, be sure to send us an email with the details.

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Categories: Maryland News

The 2017 Preakness Stakes generated nearly $40 million

Maryland Business News - Mon, May 14, 2018

With the Kentucky Derby now in the rear view mirror, anticipation is building for the second jewel in horseracing’s Triple Crown – the legendary Preakness Stakes, which is now in its 143rd year at the historic Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. Horse enthusiasts far and wide will be breaking out their big hats and seersucker suits on Saturday, May 19 for a day steeped in tradition.

While the race has always been an outstanding opportunity to market Maryland’s unparalleled assets to a global audience, the Preakness Stakes is also a significant economic generator for Baltimore City and the entire state of Maryland. An economic impact study produced by the Maryland Department of Commerce‘s Office of Research showed that in 2017, the Preakness drew a record-breaking crowd of more than 140,000 to Old Hilltop and generated nearly $40 million in total economic impact, which includes everything from hotels and transportation to restaurants and retail.

Among the study’s other highlights:

  • Roughly 500 full-time equivalent jobs and $14.3 million in salaries were generated by visitor spending on the Preakness.
  • Expenditures and employment from Preakness race day operations and visitor spending generated $2.6 million in state and local taxes.
  • Race-day betting in Maryland increased by six percent compared to 2016’s race, resulting in more than $5 million total in-state bets placed.

“For Maryland, the Preakness is an opportunity to showcase our thriving horse industry, first-class hospitality establishments, and impressive tourist attractions,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill. “The economic impact isn’t just felt in dollars spent, it is also the positive publicity for Maryland and its assets that marks the true value of this day.”

For more information, visit

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Categories: Maryland News

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra tours U.K. and Ireland

Maryland Business News - Thu, May 10, 2018

Maryland’s music scene will shine on the world stage this summer, as the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra travels abroad for a tour through the United Kingdom and Ireland.

From August 21-30, the BSO will make stops in London, Edinburgh, and Dublin, making itself known as a strong cultural ambassador for the city of Baltimore and the entire state of Maryland.

The tour will kick off with two nights at the Edinburgh International Festival, and end with a performance at the National Concert Hall in Dublin, marking the BSO’s first-ever performance in Ireland. In between, the orchestra will make its debut at the BBC’s Henry Woods Promenade Concerts – otherwise known as The Proms – a summer series of classical music performances held at the famed Royal Albert Hall in London. The BSO will become the only American orchestra to perform at the Edinburgh Festival, and one of two to ever perform at The Proms.

This nine-day, four-concert tour will be director Marin Alsop’s international debut with the BSO, and the orchestra’s first international tour in nearly 15 years. Alsop became the first woman to head a major American orchestra in 2007.

The Baltimore Symphony has been recognized as one of America’s top orchestras for more than a century. While Maryland’s preeminent orchestra is already internationally known, the upcoming tour is sure to increase admiration and respect not only for the BSO, but for Maryland and its many activities related to recreation, culture, and arts.

The BSO is the state’s largest cultural organization, with performances reaching more than 350,000 attendees throughout Maryland every year. To learn more and purchase tickets for upcoming performances, visit

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Categories: Maryland News

Eastern Shore’s Choptank Transport expands to Baltimore

Maryland Business News - Wed, May 9, 2018

Last month, Choptank Transport announced its expansion to Baltimore City’s Federal Hill neighborhood where it will establish its latest sales office.

For more than 20 years, Choptank Transport has specialized in shipping a variety of freight via road, rail, air, and sea. Headquartered in the town of Preston in Caroline County, the company has worked tirelessly to achieve their goal of getting customers the best rate and fastest delivery time for both refrigerated and dry products.

The company’s president and CEO, Geoff Turner, said the move is a direct response to Choptank’s growing business.

“We are excited to begin hiring for this new location,” Turner said. “Our growing customer base has created the need to offer additional services and add a larger workforce. We are fortunate to be a business that offers career seekers ample opportunities for advancement and financial success.”

The expansion is expected to be completed in June and will include a new, 4,000-square-foot office space. Choptank also has locations in Tampa, Dallas, Denver, and Atlanta. This third-party logistics company is part of a $166 billion dollar U.S. industry that is seeing rapid growth as demand increases.

For more information on career opportunities at Choptank Transport, visit

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Categories: Maryland News

Local gift ideas for the Maryland mom

Maryland Business News - Thu, May 3, 2018

In the rush to prepare the backyard for grilling season and spring cleaning the house, Mother’s Day can sneak up and leave us scrambling for gift ideas and other ways to show how much we appreciate Mom.

Don’t let Sunday, May 13 take you by surprise this year. Whether it’s a much needed day at the spa or a box of handmade chocolates, there’s a gift and activity for every kind of mom in Maryland.

The Mom Who Needs Pampering
For the mom who wants perfectly smoothed and sculpted tresses for her special day look no further than Blo Blow Dry Bar, with locations in Annapolis and Gaithersburg. The stylists don’t do cuts or color because they’ve made it their sole job to expertly style hair for runway ready locks. Walk-ins are welcome and makeup services are also offered at the Annapolis location.

Help mom escape for an hour or the entire day at Spa on the Avenue in White Marsh. With services including Tahitian Coconut Body Polish, Sedona Mud Body Masque, Ayurvedic Spa Treatments, and Energy Balancing along with traditional salon services such as haircut and color, nail care, makeup, and waxing – you’re sure to find the perfect fit for your mom’s needs.

For one of the most unique spa experiences, visit The Salt Sanctuary in Elkridge. Salt Therapy is said to reduce inflammation, calm symptoms of chronic respiratory conditions, boost immunity, and relieve the symptoms of allergies. This unique, microclimate environment, provides and all-natural, drug-free, and non-invasive solution to enhance the body’s natural ability to balance and heal.

The Flower-Loving Mom
For an early Mother’s Day gift take mom to The Flowermart in Mount Vernon. This time honored tradition celebrates the start of spring with tons of beautiful flowers including annuals, hanging baskets, azaleas, rhododendrons, tulips, and more. Featuring delicious food, unique arts and crafts, fun contests, live music, and everyone’s favorite lemon peppermint sticks – the Flowermart is an all-day affair. Take mom to this free festival running from 11AM-8PM on both Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5.

Located in Lothian, Greenstreet Gardens offers a wealth of plants, flowers, landscape options, and gifts for every garden-loving mom. Open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. every day, Greenstreet is perfect for either picking up a gift or bringing mom out to enjoy the beautiful flowers and search for the next addition to her garden.

For 45 years, Sun Nurseries has provided high quality, locally grown plants in Howard County. Open seven days a week, this 20 acre-site hosts a vast plant display area, garden supply store, and hard goods loading area. With their huge selection of fruit plants, perennials, annuals, and pottery, you and mom are sure to get lost for the day in a sea of natural beauty.

For the Mom Who Wants Something to Unwrap
Based in Reisterstown, My Staycation Box offers the elements of a vacation to destinations like Jamaica, Key West, Australia, Greece and Ireland all in one affordable package. Simply choose a destination themed box, place your order, and in two to three days you’ll receive a box filled with amazing products that embody the spirit of that location. The company is constantly adding new destinations to their store meaning you’re bound to find one for the trip mom has always dreamed of or a place she’d like to return.

For apparel, home décor, jewelry, bags, and beauty products visit Punch in historic Federal Hill. Here you’ll find uniquely styled items unlike anything in generic department stores. The company also offers their merchandise for online purchase. Pick up a gift that perfectly meets mom’s style or make a day of it and enjoy the many restaurants and shops Federal Hill has to offer.

Located in charming downtown Berlin, HOUSE by Salvaged is a decorator’s dream. Filled with restored antique furniture and upcycled pieces, this hidden gem located behind Fins Ale House on Main Street is a perfect way to spend the day hunting for the next statement piece for mom’s home. If she loves all things Pinterest and Instagram, this will be her new favorite store.

Looking for more Mother’s Day suggestions? Click here.

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Categories: Maryland News

A very merry Maryland Mother’s Day

Maryland Business News - Wed, May 2, 2018

In the rush to prepare the backyard for grilling season and spring cleaning the house, Mother’s Day can sneak up and leave us scrambling for gift ideas and other ways to show how much we appreciate Mom.

Don’t let Sunday, May 13 take you by surprise this year. Whether it’s a much needed day at the spa or a box of handmade chocolates, there’s a gift and activity for every kind of mom in Maryland.

The Outdoorsy Mom
For 25 years, Schooner Woodwind has been welcoming passengers aboard their beautiful, 74-foot schooners in Annapolis. From two-hour public sailing cruises to specialty options featuring carefully crafted food and drink pairings, there’s an excursion for everyone. Help raise the sails and steer the boat, or simply sit back and enjoy the view of Maryland’s treasured Chesapeake Bay.

Just minutes from Deep Creek Lake in the mountains of Garrett County, Circle R Ranch is the perfect way to relax and connect with nature. This family-friendly guided trail ride will provide you with stunning views of natural streams, towering maple and oak trees, and more. With horses to suit both novice and experienced equestrians, Circle D Ranch can accommodate any outdoor lovers’ wish of experiencing nature in the saddle.

Make a weekend out of Mother’s Day by enjoying s’mores and campfire stories at the Brunswick Family Campground in Frederick County between the Potomac River and the C&O Canal. With more than a 100 scenic campsites available for reservation, this hidden gem offers breathtaking views of the Short Hill Mountain and activities like biking, hiking, and boating.

The Artsy Mom
Celebrate the 50-year legendary music career of Tom Jones one night only on Wednesday, May 9 at 8PM at Baltimore City’s Hippodrome. At 77 years young, Jones has received some of the best reviews of his career for his most recent albums, ‘Long Lost Suitcase’, ‘Spirit in the Room’, and ‘Praise & Blame.’ Featuring supporting act, ‘Into the Ark’.

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra has amazed audiences with its ‘Movie with Orchestra’ series featuring the scores of classic films, such as Jurassic Park and Harry Potter, performed live while the film unfolds on the big screen. Principal Pops Conductor, Jack Everly, will take the podium from Thursday May 10th to Sunday May 13th for Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. There will be shows at both the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore City and the Strathmore Performing Arts Center in Bethesda.

Glass fusion and paint your own pottery at Ellicott City’s Pottery Shop is the perfect outlet for the creative Mom. All ages and abilities are welcome to choose a pottery or glass piece to paint or create their own fused glass project while enjoying a latte or smoothie. The Pottery Shop is open seven days a week and walk-ins are welcome.

The Foodie Mom
Located in the Fells Point neighborhood of Baltimore City, Pierpoint Restaurant offers both adult and children’s cooking classes for a variety of skillsets. For more than 20 years, the restaurant has hosted hands-on classes that include food, drink, and recipes that participants can eat and take home. Classes include International Appetizers, Thai Cuisine, International Barbeque, Maryland Cooking, Modern Italian, Creative Vegetarian, and more. Classes are hosted on weekends from 1-4PM and are reserved by phone at 410-675-2080.

Learn how to bake delicious croissants, bagels, and pastries with Chef Steve Konopelski at Denton’s Turnbridge Point Bed & Breakfast. Classes range from group demonstration styles to private, hands-on instruction sessions. Enjoy Chef Steve’s famous cookies while taking in the striking beauty of this newly renovated Victorian-era home with views of the Choptank River. Turnbridge Point will also be hosting a Mother’s Day Sunday Brunch.

Take a trip to Southern Maryland to explore the over 75 indulgent recipes at Heritage Chocolates in Leonardtown’s Square. Established in 2015, these handmade chocolates and confections have boomed in popularity offering classics like caramels and toffees, to cream-filled chocolates, enrobed Oreos, and decorated graham crackers.

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Categories: Maryland News

Celebrate National Small Business Week in Maryland

Maryland Business News - Mon, Apr 30, 2018

It’s National Small Business Week, and in Maryland that means we’re celebrating the companies that form the bedrock of our economy.

Maryland has more than 580,000 small businesses, which means our small business community makes up more than 99 percent of all the businesses in the state. More than 1 million people are employed by Maryland small businesses—that’s more than half of the state’s private workforce, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Small businesses are everywhere, providing every kind of service: construction firms, retail stores, manufacturers, health care providers—you name it! They also include our thriving community of ground-breaking startups, so it’s no wonder Maryland has been named one of the top states in the country for innovation.

Our larger firms and institutions depend on our small businesses community to provide essential services and supplies, and they’re one of our most important reasons that we can say Maryland is “Open for Business” as we show companies from all over the world why they should locate here.

Thank you to all of our small businesses for everything you do!

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Categories: Maryland News

International cybersecurity companies vie for iCyberCenter spots

Maryland Business News - Wed, Apr 25, 2018

There was no Mr. Wonderful, no dramatic music, and no national television coverage, yet in Venable LLP’s 38th floor conference room with an expansive view of San Francisco, the tension was palpable.

Ten cybersecurity companies – from Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom – made three-minute pitches to a panel of expert judges during the Maryland RSA Pitch Competition hosted by iCyberCenter@bwtech and the Maryland Department of Commerce. Unlike Shark Tank, though, each contestant walked away with prizes, including free or discounted access to workshops and programs offered by iCyberCenter@bwtech.

London-headquartered Ruggd, represented by CEO Brittany Greenfield, took home first place in the competition. Along with second-place winner iProov and third-place finisher Cog Systems, Ruggd won a free spot in the iCyberCenter’s two-day workshop in June, as well as three free months in the bwtech@UMBC incubator in Catonsville, Md. Deep Secure and Reponsight each won a free spot in the iCyberCenter’s June workshop. The other competitors – SIEMonster, Cogito Group, Aleron Security, Immersive Labs, and RedShield – each received a $500 discount for the workshop.

“bwtech@UMBC’s iCyber Incubator was delighted to co-host an international pitch competition during the RSA conference with Maryland Commerce,” said Ellen Hemmerly, executive director of bwtech@UMBC. “Maryland is an excellent place for international cybersecurity companies to enter the U.S. market, as evidenced by the strong international applicant pool for this pitch event.”

Hemmerly welcomed contestants, judges, and guests and emceed the program. Prior to the presentations, Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill and Silent Circle CEO Gregg Smith spoke about the advantages and opportunities of doing business in Maryland.

“The Maryland RSA Pitch Competition was a terrific opportunity to tell international companies about Maryland’s outstanding assets, resources, and business culture,” said Gill. “Our state has drawn some of the best talent and technology in the world, and we’re looking forward to adding these businesses to our robust cyber sector.”

In addition to Smith, judges included Preston Frazier, chief technologist (cyber), Northrop Grumman Mission Systems; Jeremy Grant, managing director of technology and business strategy, Venable LLP; Ken McCreedy, director of cybersecurity and aerospace, Maryland Commerce; Christopher Steed, managing director, Paladin Capital Group; and Steven Witt, co-founder and investment board member, DataTribe.

The iCyberCenter’s June workshop will provide information about the U.S. cyber market, introductions to successful entrepreneurs and investors in the sector, and access to experts who have helped companies win more than $4 billion in U.S. government contracts. Held in conjunction with the workshop, a “Meet the Buyer” event is designed to connect international companies with CISOs and CTOs, as well as integrators and U.S. resellers. Three months’ free access to iCyberCenter@bwtech will give companies access to the co-working facility’s unique resources and programs, as well as the nation’s premier cybersecurity talent pool.

“We were gratified to find so much interest from the high quality companies that pitched at the competition,” said McCreedy. “Our message was clear: Maryland is the international gateway to the U.S. cybersecurity market.”

Even Mr. Wonderful and Shark Tank would have been impressed.

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Categories: Maryland News

Maryland’s National Parks generate $234 million

Maryland Business News - Mon, Apr 23, 2018

From historic battlefields to a national seashore, there are a variety of Maryland locations to visit in honor of National Park Week.

Held April 21 – 29, the National Park Service is celebrating the more than 400 sites protected under the National Park System. Here in Maryland, our 18 NPS sites generate an economic impact of more than $234 million in park tourism. And with more than 6.5 million visitors every year, our small state packs quite the punch in culture, recreation, and conservation.

If you’re looking to visit one of Maryland’s sites this week, our top choice is one of the state’s newer NPS members – the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad. Take time to explore Tubman’s home and landscape while learning about her journey to freedom. While visiting this national historical park, enjoy the Eastern Shore’s spring weather and stop by the adjacent visitor center and the surrounding Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. The visitor center – which opened last spring – surpassed 100,000 visitors during its first year in business.

The National Park Service was created in 1916 to conserve the scenery, historic objects, and wildlife across the country. President Woodrow Wilson signed the act in order to protect the nation’s natural landmarks and provide enjoyment for future generations. Today, the sites cover more than 84 million acres in the U.S.

See the full list of National Parks in Maryland on the NPS website. Commemorate the occasion by joining NPS on social media with the hashtag #FindYourPark.

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Categories: Maryland News

Celebrating Earth Day in Maryland

Maryland Business News - Thu, Apr 19, 2018

Earth Day is April 22, and we are looking at Maryland’s energy and sustainability industry and highlighting companies throughout the state that are working towards smarter energy use and greener living.

In Maryland, our more than 1,200 energy and sustainability firms generate an estimated $8 billion in gross state product. Through numerous state resources, we are looking to ensure that number keeps growing for years to come.

In the coming months, the Maryland Green Registry Leadership Awards will honor local companies celebrating environmental successes. This annual event focuses on the achievements of Maryland Green Registry members that are committed to continuing sustainable practices. Businesses can become registry members for free and have until the end of the month to apply for a green leadership award.

Three-time award winner Thermo Fisher Scientific believes improving environmental sustainability is an ongoing process. With offices in Frederick and Walkersville, this biotechnology company has been a member of the Maryland Green Registry since 2011, with a strong focus on conserving resources, minimizing waste, and reducing greenhouse gases. The company has also been recognized by Frederick County, The National Conference on Citizenship, and the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for its impact on the community.

Newer to the program is Hamilton Associates, an Owings Mills-based parent company of three manufacturers. Hamilton pulls the three businesses together with one shared vision: to improve the world through responsibly manufactured products. The company received a leadership award last year for reducing its energy usage by 20 percent—upgrades to HVAC systems, fixing air leaks, and retrofitting LED lighting all helped the company become more energy efficient. Hamilton also encourages its employees to participate in reusing materials and hosted a demonstration on creating garden planters out of leftover wooden pallets.

Other registry members all throughout the state are working towards reducing their carbon footprint, including GM Baltimore, Habitat for Humanity, Linganore Winecellars, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, and various hotels, government agencies, universities, and state parks. Read the full list of members by clicking here.

Companies outside the registry are also looking to make eco-friendly changes in Maryland. Based out of Linthicum, The Wilburn Company is a commercial cleaning service dedicated to not only cleaning buildings and businesses, but also making sure they help keep the environment clean. The company recently received a new GS-42 certification from Green Seal®, which ensures that Wilburn’s services meet the certifier’s impressively high standards. The company must reduce chemical waste and solid waste, as well as continue workforce training for employees, to keep its certification.

“We are not just janitors, we are environmental hygienists,” said Robert Baldwin, vice president of The Wilburn Company. “We are impacting people’s lives by directly affecting their health, their economics, and their work performance all while protecting the environment.”

It’s not only up to the business community to help keep our planet clean. If you’re an individual looking to make an environmental difference outside of the workplace, check out these volunteer opportunities compiled by the Maryland Department of the Environment.

Read more about energy and sustainability in Maryland.

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Categories: Maryland News

Perdue celebrates 50 years of legendary brand

Maryland Business News - Thu, Apr 19, 2018

It was 50 years ago that Perdue purchased its Salisbury, Md. plant, kicking off a product that we now know as the number one fresh chicken brand in the nation.

After renovating its newly-acquired Route 50 facility in 1967, the company processed its first PERDUE® branded chicken right here in Maryland. Perdue’s successful venture officially disrupted the chicken industry, and today has continued that tradition by eliminating antibiotics, advancing animal welfare, and increasing organic production. The family-owned company, now in its third generation, will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2020.

Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill joined Perdue representatives and Salisbury Mayor Jake Day earlier this month to commemorate the occasion, and celebrate the company’s economic impact in Maryland and success as the country’s fourth-largest poultry company.

Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill and Chairman Jim Perdue. Photo courtesy of Perdue.

“With a strong commitment to quality and customer service, Perdue is one of Maryland’s most valued corporate partners, and we thank them for continuing to invest in our state,” said Secretary Mike Gill.

“Perdue Farms has a long and proud history with the Eastern Shore and the State of Maryland,” Governor Larry Hogan said in a statement. “Our administration recognizes the importance of this iconic, family-owned business to Maryland’s economy, and I am proud to congratulate the Perdue family on the 50th anniversary of PERDUE® branded chicken.”

Also honored at the event were a number of employees celebrating more than 40 years at the Salisbury plant. Together, the workers total more than 300 years of service in Wicomico County.

Perdue Farms celebrates the contributions of the associates working at the Salisbury, Md., plant, where the brand started. From left to right are Curtis Jones, Laverne Garrison, Cheryl Ballard, Lorenzo Beach, Diane Jenkins and Andre Jones. Photo courtesy of Perdue.

“The Salisbury plant is successful because of the experience of our associates,” said chairman Jim Perdue. “So many people have made a tremendous impact on the growth of our brand and success of our company.”

As the city’s largest employer, Perdue is committed to the Salisbury community and the entire Eastern Shore. Just this month, the Perdue Foundation donated $20,000 to help clean up the Chesapeake Bay watershed, and earlier this year the foundation funded an early learning center in Berlin and presented a record amount to the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore, with help from Perdue associates.

Learn more about the company and its responsibility to food and agriculture at

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Categories: Maryland News

Paint the town on the Eastern Shore

Maryland Business News - Tue, Apr 17, 2018

Guest feature: Barbara Vann is with the Kent County Office of Tourism Development. Follow Kent County on Facebook and Twitter.

After a brutally cold winter, what better way to savor the warmth and beauty of spring than the RiverArts 9th Annual “Paint the Town,” April 26-29, where more than 50 talented artists will paint Chestertown and the surrounding countryside and waterways.

Artists come from throughout the mid-Atlantic region and as far away as Washington, D.C. and New York. In fact, Chestertown has been voted the “best place to escape” in Maryland. Many artists paint scenes of historic Chestertown and the surrounding small towns and countryside, while some arrive a day early to scout out Kent County, looking for something special. The result is a wonderful range of paintings that include historic buildings and street scenes, gardens, rural expanses, seascapes, nautical views, and more.

The artists will paint for three days: on Thursday and Friday they will paint throughout Kent and upper Queen Anne’s Counties, and on Saturday, artists are encouraged to paint in downtown Chestertown while one of Maryland’s most popular Farmers’ Markets is in town.

The paintings are framed and will be available for sale at the free “Wet Paint Reception and Sale” on Saturday, April 28, 5:30-8:00pm at RiverArts, 315 High Street. The artists will have their own say by voting “Best in Show” and “Best Body of Work.” Sales tend to be brisk so visitors are encouraged to make their choices during the reception. However, if more time is needed, the paintings can be viewed on Sunday morning.

On Sunday there will be a “Quick Draw” where artists have two hours to paint a scene. These paintings will also be for sale 11am-12pm and will be shown in Fountain Park. In case of inclement weather, the paintings will be moved to the breezeway near RiverArts.

Click here for more information.

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Categories: Maryland News

Tech company of the week: Trinity Cyber

Maryland Business News - Mon, Apr 16, 2018

Last May, Governor Hogan announced the Excel Maryland Initiative at the inaugural Maryland Business Summit in front of more than 700 business, education, and community leaders in the state. The initiative’s goal is lofty – to launch a comprehensive, statewide economic development strategy focused on developing new collaborative techniques to accelerate growth in the life sciences and cybersecurity industries.

With more than 35 incubators and research parks and a number one ranking in STEM job concentration, Maryland is fertile ground for entrepreneurs in life sciences and cybersecurity, industries where Maryland already leads. Excel Maryland, the latest tool in the state’s toolbox, is designed to propel these industries to even greater heights.

MDBizNews sat down with a few local businesses that are thriving in the state’s cybersecurity sector and giving the Commerce team plenty to brag about at the upcoming RSA Conference.

Trinity Cyber, based in Bowie, operates a business-to-business cybersecurity service for clients based on a three-pronged approach of being proactive, adaptive, and invisible when it comes to securing valuable networks.

Founders Steve Ryan and Neill Sciarrone come from top-level government security backgrounds – Ryan previously served as Director of the National Security Agency’s Threat Operations Center and Sciarrone was Special Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Senior Director of Cybersecurity at the White House. Steve Wagner, Trinity’s director of external affairs, said Maryland was a natural fit for starting an-up-and-coming cybersecurity business.

“Maryland has a great reputation for supporting both small and local businesses, from state representatives to the governor’s office to county and city officials, all of whom have exceeded our high expectations,” said Wagner. “Additionally, as an education-rich environment with several top-tier institutions offering degrees in digital security, Maryland offers access a rich pipeline of talent in the cybersecurity field.”

Trinity’s approach to security utilizes their patented Proactive Threat InterferenceTM service that works with a client’s existing cyber defense infrastructure to prevent malicious Internet traffic from reaching corporate networks. Wagner says that the proactive nature of Trinity’s cybersecurity service breaks the mold of most reactive defense services.

“Cybersecurity products and services tend to focus internally on the corporate network, helping to identify malicious traffic, investigate potential events, and minimize damage from incursions,” Wagner said. “While these functions are very important to securing networks, they are also inherently reactive to events that have already occurred. Trinity Cyber’s service complements these existing functions by operating outside the corporate network, between our customers and cyber adversaries, to stop attacks before they even reach our clients.”

As Trinity grows rapidly in this ever-expanding industry, the company plans to tap into talent pipelines from the University System of Maryland, Johns Hopkins University, and Maryland’s other leading higher education institutions to expand their team and meet demand.

“As a growing business, we are constantly searching for top cybersecurity talent,” Wagner said. “Proximity to Maryland’s strong educational institutions provides us with a strategic advantage as we continue to scale our operations and execute on our mission.”

For more information visit

Click here for more Tech Company of the Week profiles

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Categories: Maryland News

Port of Baltimore breaks nearly 40 year record

Maryland Business News - Thu, Apr 12, 2018

Guest feature: Richard Scher is the director of communications for the Maryland Port Administration. Follow the Port on Facebook and Twitter.

The Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore’s public and private marine terminals handled 38.4 million tons of cargo in 2017, the most since 1979 and the third-highest tonnage in its history. This record comes on the heels of a record 2017 year for the Port’s state-owned public marine terminals.

“The Port of Baltimore continues to be a leading economic engine for our state, supported by tens of thousands of hard-working Marylanders,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “The Port is a great example of our Administration’s commitment to ensuring that Maryland remains Open for Business.”

The 38.4 million tons of cargo handled last year was valued at $53.9 billion. The cargo tonnage fell just behind the record of 40.9 million tons in 1974 and 38.5 million tons in 1979.

The Hogan Administration recently announced that last year the Port’s public marine terminals, managed by the Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Port Administration, had a record year by handling 10.7 million tons of general cargo. It was the second consecutive year for more than 10 million tons of general cargo from the public terminals. General cargo includes autos and light trucks, containers, roll on/roll off (farm, mining and construction equipment), forest products (rolled paper and wood pulp) and breakbulk cargo. Included in the general cargo number was a record 596,972 containers, an 11 percent jump from the previous record set in 2016.

Business at the Port of Baltimore generates about 13,650 direct jobs, while about 127,600 jobs in Maryland are linked to Port activities. The Port is responsible for nearly $3 billion in personal wages and salary and more than $300 million in state and local tax revenues. Learn more.

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Categories: Maryland News