Baltimore County Now
Jordan Fish, Baltimore County Tourism & Promotion
Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, Baltimore County is in the holiday spirit! Be sure to check our list of the many events and programs going on around the County during the month of December. From train gardens to tree lightings – it’s the most wonderful time of the year in Baltimore County!
Christmas Open House at Basignani Winery - Christmas time very special at Basignani Winery. Visit the north Baltimore County winery for its annual celebration of the Tuscan Christmas. Experience an Italian Christmas as Basignani transforms the tasting room and piazza into a little piece of Tuscany. Taste the wines and try some seasonal Tuscan Christmas treats.
December Saturdays at DeJon Vineyards - Join DeJon Vineyards, located in Hydes, during the first 3 Saturdays of December for free live music, tasty treats, and decorative scenery. They deck the halls with a giant Christmas tree and train garden in the tasting room. Each week different acoustic musicians will perform classic holiday songs, as well as their regular catalog of tunes.
Holiday Hoopla - December 7th is the official start of the holiday season in Dundalk! The Dundalk Renaissance Corporation joins forces with Dundalk-Eastfield Recreation to create a day with lots of tradition, memory-making and fun for all ages. Some of the event highlights include a parade with Santa and Mrs. Claus, a delicious cookie tour, and the train garden at the Dundalk-Patapsco Neck Historical Society and Museum.
Holidays at Hampton....a Yuletide Celebration - Get into the holiday spirit early with “Holidays at Hampton” where the public can celebrate the season at Hampton Mansion, Baltimore County's only National Park. The “Holidays at Hampton” Yuletide weekend, Dec. 13th - 15th, includes special evening tours, antique cars, period crafts, musical and dance performances, African-American storytelling and unique holiday shopping in the Museum Shop. All of the festivities are free and open to the public.
Holiday Train Garden at the Fire Museum of Maryland - Kids of all ages will enjoy the Holiday Train Garden at the Fire Museum of Maryland. The layout features the Bromo Seltzer Tower and a burning building, complete with fire engines and hoses crisscrossing the fire ground. Watch Antique O-Scale trains and a street car wind their way past many of Baltimore’s famous neighborhoods and landmarks.
Jacksonville in Miniature for the Holidays - Now in its third year, Jacksonville in Miniature has grown into an animated wonderland. Train team members combine their talents to create replicas of local landmarks, scenes of "life in Jacksonville", and, of course, operating model trains. Located at the Jacksonville Senior Center, the 2013 display is expanding beyond Jacksonville to include the Ocean City boardwalk and the Washington D.C. Mall.
Towson WinterFest - Presented by the Towson Chamber of Commerce, WinterFest features numerous events in the downtown Towson area throughout December. Activities range from family friendly breakfasts with the Grinch and Frosty, to Ho Ho Happy Hours at area bars and restaurants. Check out the full schedule of events.
Wine Country Christmas at Boordy Vineyards – On December Saturdays, through the 21st, Boordy's Barn is the perfect setting for seasonal merry-making with traditional music, a tour of the winery, and steaming Wassail (a specialty from Boordy for over twenty-five years). Wines may be purchased by the glass or bottle for enjoying in the barn with your friends. The wine shop will be brimming with gifts for the hard to please wine lovers!
To find out about other great happenings in Baltimore County throughout the year, visit the Baltimore County Tourism and Promotion events calendar.
Program Coordinator, Baltimore County Department of Aging
Think for a moment of your family members and friends who are 65 or older. Statistically, one in every three seniors takes a fall each year – often with serious consequences. Fortunately, falls are a public health problem that is largely preventable.
Falls can cause moderate to severe injuries, such as hip fractures and head traumas, and they are the leading cause of injury death among older adults. Even more alarming is the fact that death rates from falls among older men and women have risen sharply over the past decade.
The Baltimore County Department of Aging is spearheading a community effort to address this issue, and has formed the Gait Way to Better Balance Coalition. The mission of this broad partnership with health care providers and advocates is to reduce the risk of falls. The coalition provides free health screenings and fall prevention information to assist seniors in preventing falls and lowering their risks of injury if they do fall.
Older adults can remain independent and reduce their chances of falling. They can:
· Exercise regularly. It is important that the exercises focus on increasing leg strength and improving balance, and that they get more challenging over time. Tai Chi programs are especially good.
· Ask their doctor or pharmacist to review their medicines — both prescription and over-the counter — to identify medications that may cause side effects or interactions such as dizziness or drowsiness.
· Have their eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year and update their eyeglasses to maximize their vision. Consider getting a pair with single vision distance lenses for some activities such as walking outside.
· Make their homes safer by reducing tripping hazards, adding grab bars inside and outside the tub or shower and next to the toilet, adding stair railings and improving the lighting in their homes.
These simple steps can go a long way to protecting the health and safety of older adults.