Howard County Times

It’s officially summer in Ellicott City, why not celebrate with lunch al fresco | MOSTLY MAIN

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It’s officially summer, so why not enjoy dining outdoors?

My husband, Tom, and I have been heading to the historic district for lunch quite frequently lately. In the past few weeks we have enjoyed the The Trolley Stop, Phoenix Upper Main and La Palapa Grill & Cantina. Phoenix has a nice breezeway for outdoor dining, with great views of passersby, and the view at La Palapa can’t be beat. We sat out on their patio, munching on super fresh chips and homemade salsa, looking up at the golden dome of the courthouse on the hill. Across the street is the equally timeless view of Walter Jackson, sitting on the porch of his used book shop, Gramp’s Attic Books, ready to welcome browsers.


On our most recent visit we watched workers preparing the new Georgia Grace Cafe for reopening, just west of La Palapa. We’re looking forward to trying that in its new location soon.


Or, how about a milkshake for lunch? The Crazy Mason Milkshake Bar just opened at 8225 Main St., on the corner of Columbia Pike . I can easily imagine one of their concoctions being a great lunch all by itself. I like the sound of the O’Crab shake, a nod to Maryland. This over-the-top confection is made with sea salt caramel and chocolate ice cream served in a chocolate- and caramel-swirled customer-designed Maryland jar, topped with a Berger’s cookie, a chocolate Old Bay-dusted crab and EC Pops chocolate-coated popcorn.

The Miller Library is hosting a presentation by local artist Wiley Purkey on June 30, starting at 6:30 p.m. It’s called “A Brush with History.” Go to the library website to register for this free event.

Now is the time to register your kids for summer camp at Bethany United Methodist Church. They are offering two Musical Notes Camps. For ages 3 to 6 years the half-day camp is called “Music, Movement and Motion.” It runs from July 25-29 and costs $100. On the same dates kids 7 and older can enjoy “Children’s Rock Band,” a full day experience. The cost is $180. Go to the Bethany website at to register.

Upcoming Concerts in the Courtyard, sponsored by the Little Market Café, include Brian Morrison noon-3 p.m., June 25; Jamnation, noon-3 p.m., June 26; and Uncle Baltimore, 6-8 p.m., July 1. Upcoming movies at The Wine Bin are “Free Guy” on June 25 and “Spider Man: No Way Home” on July 2. Show time is 9 p.m.

The Howard County Conservancy is holding a Pollinator Festival from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the farm, 10520 Old Frederick Road. Learn about pollinators through themed activities and games. The event is free, but registration is required. Visit to sign up.

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