Things sure got a whole lot easier for me since my brother married a woman who hosts an annual multiple famly annual Mother's Day party and barbecue. If I didn't have that to fall back on, I'd consider one of these Mother's Day options.
On Saturday and Sunday, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Boordy Vineyards is inviting families to picnic on their sprawling grounds. The cost is $12 for adults, $10 for teens and $5 for children 2 to 12. There will be music by Ellis Woodward and Company; wine tasting; and tours of the vineyard.
Boordy added in the Saturday option four years ago. "We used to do it just on Sunday," Boordy's director of events Dorothy Bistransin says. "But so many people have blended families, you can't always fit your family into one day."
You can bring your own food, but Boordy is assembling picnic packages for the event, which include wine, food and tiaras. The tiaras have been a longtime staple at the Boordy Mother's Day event, but Bistransin acknowledges that they will feel extra-special in the aftermath of the royal wedding. "Every mother should get to feel like a queen for a day."
The event will be held rain or shine.
Boordy is at 12820 Long Green Pike in Hydes. Call 410-592-5015 or go to boordy.com
Or consider a Charm City Food Tour. Regularly scheduled tours are conducted of Fells Point, Federal Hill and Little Italy on Wednesdays through Sundays at 3 p.m. The culinary tours, which last about 31/2 hours, are designed to immerse participants in the life and culture of historic Baltimore as seen through a neighborhood's food. The tours include ample sampling of the neighborhood's best and most representative foods.
There was still some availability on Mother's Day itself for all three tours, but if they are filled up, you can always give Mom a Charm City Food Tours gift certificate. Or you could arrange for a private tour, says Jeff Swedarsky, the company's director. For information, go to baltimorefoodtours.com. For private tour information, call 202-683-8847
The annual Maryland Film Festival concludes, as usual, on Mother's Day. The big food-related movie this year is "Cafeteria Man," a new documentary about Tony Geraci's attempts to improve the food in Baltimore City's schools. That movie shows at 5 p.m. on Mother's Day at the Brown Center at the Maryland Institute College of Art.
(You could score huge points though by treating Mom to the concluding night screening of "Sing Your Song," which will include a guest appearance by Harry Belafonte.)
For information, go to md-filmfest.com or baltimoresun.com/mff.
Here's a sampling of some other area restaurants hosting Mother's Day specials:
Charleston: Cindy Wolf's "seasonal menu of the moment," along with the full fixed-price menu, will be available. Reservations are being taken for 4 p.m.-8 p.m. 1000 Lancaster St., 410-332-7373, charlestonrestaurant.com
Morton's: The steakhouse is offering a special Mother's Day menu including a choice of salad, entree, side dish and dessert, for $59 per person, not including beverages, tax, and gratuity. Entree choices include a single-cut filet mignon; filet Oskar with asparagus, jumbo lump crab and bearnaise sauce; broiled salmon filet with beurre blanc sauce; colossal shrimp Alexander; or chicken Christopher. An a la carte dinner menu will also available. Special Mother's Day hours, 2 p.m.-9 p.m. (regular hours are 5 p.m.-10 p.m.), 300 S. Charles St., 410-547-8255, mortons.com.
Pazo: An extensive Mother's Day buffet, highlighting seasonal and local favorites, will be available, 5 p.m.-8:30 p.m. 1425 Aliceanna St., 410-534-7296, pazorestaurant.com.
Petit Louis: The full a la carte menu will be available along with a special $39 fixed-price menu. Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be served, 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. 4800 Roland Ave., 410-366-9393, petitlouis.com.
The Prime Rib: The Mount Vernon steakhouse will start serving at 2 p.m. from the regular menu. Live jazz. 1101 N. Calvert St., 410-539-1804, theprimerib.com.
Roy's: A Mother's Day brunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and dinner a la carte from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Any mom who dines at Roy's on Friday, Saturday or Sunday will receive a $20 Roy's gift certificate. 720B Aliceanna St., 410-659-0099, roysrestaurant.com.
Regi's American Bistro: The Federal Hill bistro is serving its "multiple award-winning brunch" on Mother's Day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and a full dinner menu from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. All moms receive a complimentary mimosa. Reservations highly suggested. 1002 Light St., 410-539-7344, regisamericanbistro.com
Sotto Sopra: The posh downtown restaurant is open on Mother's Day from noon to 9 p.m., serving the regular menu and specials. 405 N. Charles St., 410-625-0534, sottosoprainc.com.
Waterstone Bar & Grille: The Mount Vernon tavern is open from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., serving a three-course Mother's Day dinner. All moms receive a $25 gift certificate. 311 W. Madison St., 410-225-7475, waterstonebarandgrille.com