A buzz of excitement filled the mezzanine of the Sheraton Inner Harbor Hotel. Scores of college-bound Baltimore high school graduates were gathered there with their families and supporters for CollegeBound Foundation's 19th Annual Scholars' Luncheon, including Mischa Minor, 2007 Scholar of the Year. As they waited for the ballroom doors to open for the luncheon, giggling groups of teenagers compared notes on where they had gone to school and which colleges they'd be attending, thanks to their CollegeBound scholarships. Each clutched his or her unique "party favor," a Webster's College Dictionary, but they needed no help in describing how they were feeling about the new adventure they were about to embark upon.

"I'm excited. And kind of happy," said scholar Shavaughna Bowen.

The scholars weren't the only guests dealing with emotional roller coasters.

"I'm excited and sad. My young baby's going away to be a man," said proud mom Jo Ann Casey about son Cameron Casey. And then there were long-time CollegeBound supporters, like board chairman Charlie Scheeler.

"This is a wonderful organization that helps a lot of hard-working and smart city public school students. ... We're here to celebrate the successes of many of them here today. And we hope there'll be an awful lot more tomorrow as well," he said.


Columbia native Erik Deatherage, 39, has been the morning man at WTMD-FM radio for the past two years. Deatherage is single and lives in the Pikesville area.

Were you a radio geek when you were a kid?

Oh, yeah. I used to make tapes of me and my friend. But, I also wanted to be a sportscaster like Chuck Thompson or Jon Miller. So, my friend and I would go to Orioles games and take a tape recorder to Memorial Stadium, watch the Orioles get slaughtered, and I'd pretend to be Chuck Thompson and do play by play.

What are your other passions?

Anything to do with aviation. [I went] to the University of North Dakota because it's known for its aviation programs. ... I love music. ... The real reason I love what I do is that I get to merge my own love of music with sharing it with other people.

What types of music are your favorites?

Specifically, Americana and -- going back to my roots -- '80s new wave and punk. The Clash and The Police are my core bands.

What do you do in your free time?

When I get it, it's gonna be music-based. Concerts and shows. I like a good foreign or independent movie at the Charles [Theatre].

Any guilty pleasures?

I gotta admit, I do enjoy those silly model shows -- Project Runway and America's Top Model. ... Normally, I can't stand the reality show genre. But those two shows [get me].

ONLINE Sloane Brown takes you to the party with a calendar of coming events and video reports at / scene

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