Jon’s Favorites · 2016
2016 was a long year. If you thought 2015 was long, this year was even longer than last year, by just a smidge. And in that time, I wrote some stories.
Like in years past, I started 2016 at the beach. But in April, after almost five years on Delmarva, I moved to the city, accepting a job with the Baltimore Sun Media Group as its Catonsville and Arbutus reporter.
Getting to know the area has been interesting, and there has been plenty to write about.
So here are some favorites from this year that I’ve written from both here and there. I hope you enjoy them.
Of course, the story that had the most office chatter was the 83-year-old woman with the 78-year-old missing turtle.
Shellshocked owner searches for turtle, 78, missing from her Catonsville yard
Moses, 78, has gone missing for more than two weeks. His owner, 83-year-old Gloria Todd of Catonsville, believes her…
Moving to a new place, I had a lot to learn about new traditions. Here in Baltimore, the snowball is supreme.
The snowball, a summertime staple, spans generations in Catonsville
When the Viccari family from Roswell, Ga., came to Maryland for a lacrosse tournament, their hosts said they had to try…
I had a couple school-related stories that I enjoyed reporting on. My editor came up with a clever idea for the traditional first day of school story, so it was refreshing to write about it from a different angle.
As summer vacation ends, preparations abound the night before school's opening
As the Nelson girls were designing cards Tuesday night to give to their teachers on the first day of school at the…
If you ever wanted to learn about school lunches, well I wrote about that.
Baltimore County school lunches make the grade with more options
Wednesday was a good day for kindergartner Michael Doherty at table 2E in the Catonsville Elementary School cafeteria…
Then there was the time I tried to write in rhyme.
Dr. Seuss's words thrill in Snow Hill
On Read Across America Day, A local school turned it into fun and play. Snow Hill Elementary Wednesday was about…
Teachers at Pocomoke High School learned an important lesson on student hunger.
Pocomoke teachers get ‘fast’ lesson on student hunger
Elizabeth Jones wasn’t feeling like herself the morning of Jan. 29. The 17-year Spanish teacher at Pocomoke High School…
I even wrote a little bit about sports, but not the sports you would probably guess. In Maryland, I wrote about a rising mixed martial arts fighter. In Delaware, I wrote about seniors who play Wii Bowling.
For Catonsville martial arts fighter, 'hard work has paid off'
Fifteen marks are tattooed across Jesse Stirn's left arm. Two are red, the rest are black. The marks tally the number…
Wii Bowling keeps Delaware seniors young at heart
Betty Melson spent many of her earlier years playing bowling, playing on several teams in several states. But when the…
This story I wrote about a 7-year-old drummer with leukemia made it to the top of theBaltimoreSun.com home page, probably because it features the best news video I’ve ever seen for my stories, done by Jen Rynda.
Catonsville student, a precocious little drummer boy, is trying to beat back leukemia
Ever since Melanie Kabia was pregnant with her now 7-year-old son, Noah, she knew he'd have a musical life ahead of him…
A memorable sight for me was the school parking lot filled with about 180 cars that were rescued after the historic Ellicott City flooding in July. Here’s my coverage of car owners reuniting with their vehicles, finding out if they would be salvageable.
Some stunned, others stoic as they inspect cars damaged in Ellicott City flood
Anjali David watched from the window of Cacao Lane Restaurant as floodwaters rose around her car Saturday night. Her…
And finally, like many reporters, I had to write election coverage in November. But when I got to the voting site I chose to cover, I was caught by surprise.
So I wrote a story about it.
I’ve got some talented friends in this business and I thought I’d share some of what they’ve done that I’ve enjoyed. 2017 goal: Do a better job tracking these, because I am sure I’m forgetting something great.
Here’s the video they did on vegetarian burritos in Anne Arundel County.
Food Faceoff: Episode 4 - And That's a Wrap
On this week's Food Faceoff, Phil Davis takes us around the county to find the best vegetarian burritos. It's 'nacho…
In this video, they went to the Renaissance Festival in Crownsville.
Time travel to the 16th Century: MD Renaissance Festival enters 40th year
Capital reporter Phil Davis 'steps back in time' to the 16th century to explore the Maryland Renaissance Festival…
I’m excited to see what 2017 brings, in this department.
Phil also wrote a nice story from the Army-Navy game, after covering it on Twitter in haiku.
Here are a few more favorites from friends.
» From Rachael Pacella: Loyola Blakefield graduate Van Brooks has turned life-altering tragedy into triumph and Catonsville, Arbutus record shops celebrate resurgence in sales of vinyl
» From Mitchell Northam: Ravens’ Cox is an important but unnoticed contributor.
» From Emily Chappell: A decade later, fallen soldier McMullen fondly recalled, McDaniel bookstore manager opens home to students for Thanksgiving and For many on Delmarva, ‘now’s the time’ to get a gun and
» From Hannah Carroll: Children with autism ‘find peace’ surfing in OC and Flesh-eating bacteria death gives oyster eaters pause
» From Joe Lamberti: Basically anything he shoots with a camera. But here’s a photo gallery he recently shot at the Giants-Eagles Thursday Night Football game.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jon Bleiweis has been a reporter with the Baltimore Sun Media Group since April 2016, writing for the Catonsville Times, Arbutus Times and BaltimoreSun.com. To see his recent stories, click here. He can be reached at @JonBleiweis on Twitter. For more about Jon, visit JonBleiweis.com.