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Analysts: Md. Casinos Face East Coast Competition

Maryland voters approved a massive expansion of gambling on Election Day. The Free State is getting a sixth casino in Prince George's County and Maryland Live at Arundel Mills and other casinos will get table games.

But Maryland isn't the only East Coast state doing this, writes the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Toronto and New York City are considering casino developments and Philadelphia is getting a downtown hotel and casino.

"There isn't an end in sight," writes the Las Vegas Review-Journal. "Two gaming analysts believe there should be. In separate research reports, they said the populous Northeast and Atlantic Coast regions are close to reaching a casino saturation point."

You can read the rest of the story here

BMA's Contemporary Wing Expansion Gets a Page in Amtrak Pub

Arrive Magazine, the publication that Northeast travelers receive on Amtrak, has crafted a feature highlighting the Baltimore Museum of Art's recent expansion.

"The highlight of the new pieces is a site-specific reimagining of the museum's modern and contemporary collections in sculptural forms placed in the ceiling, walls and floors," Arrive writes.

The magazine also mentions the Ripley's Believe It or Not museum, Everyman Theatre and the Hippodrome.

You can read the entire story here

Baltimore's Same-Sex Wedding Website Featured in USA Today

The day after Maryland voters approved same-sex marriage, Baltimore's tourism bureau launched its website that helps gay couples who are planning a wedding.

"Celebrate your wedding day in Baltimore!" Visit Baltimore's site says. 

And USA Today took note of the quick response.

"Visit Baltimore is helping with venues, lodging, group rates and vendor suggestions," the paper writes. "It also has the fine print on how to wed there."

Same-sex couples can wed in Maryland starting Jan. 1. 

You can read the rest of the story here

Jewish Leaders Hold Convention in Baltimore

The Jewish Federations of North America is holding its 2012 convention in Baltimore this week for the first time in 30 years, writes WBAL TV in a story that was picked up by MSNBC.com.

The meeting takes place Nov. 11-13, bringing thousands of Jews who represent 155 Jewish federations and 300 networks that "raise and distribute more than $1 billion each year for social welfare and education," the story says. 

The annual convention is a once a year chance for Jewish leaders to get together and talk about the positives and the challenges, Bruce Sholk, a past chairman of the Associated, tells WBAL.

You can read the rest of the story here

New Baltimore Homeowners Featured in Wall Street Journal

More Americans are setting up new households, which the Wall Street Journal says is an indication that worries about the recession may be on the decline.

"Rising household formation, which is tied to employment growth, means more students are finding jobs when they leave college, more adult children are leaving their parents' homes and more couples feel confident enough about the future to tie the knot," the Journal writes.

The paper identifies a Baltimore couple who just purchased a $250,000 condo.  "'We're both employed and we both feel secure with our jobs. We also feel like the housing market is on an upward swing. Prices are still depressed, but they're probably going up,'" new homebuyer Imran Akran tells the Journal. 

Walters Art Exhibit Gets a Plug in the New York Times

The Walters Art Museum's latest exhibit, which explores the depiction of Africans in Renaissance art, gets a writeup in the New York Times.

"Visually the exhibition is a gift, with marvelous things by artists familiar and revered — Dürer, Rubens, Veronese — along with images most of us never knew existed," the Times writes. "Together they map a history of art, politics and race that scholars have begun to pay attention to."

"Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe" runs through Jan. 21 and features paintings, drawings, sculptures and printed books depicting black Africans in Europe from the 1400s to the 1600s. Africans living in or visiting Europe at this time included artists, aristocrats, saints, slaves and diplomats.

You can read the entire Times' review here

CEO Shares His Love of the Orioles

In a New York Times essay, the CEO of one Maryland company shares his love of the Baltimore Orioles, who made it to the playoffs for the first time in 15 years this season. 

Jack Dunn, CEO of FTI Consulting Inc., waxes nostalgic about the team that his family once owned when it was a minor league team. 

"My great-grandfather recruited Babe Ruth," Dunn tells Patricia Olsen of the New York Times.  "Babe’s parents had sent him, an unruly son, to an industrial school that served as an orphanage. After seeing him pitch when he was 19, my great-grandfather became his guardian and signed him to the team."

He also says he bought a stake in the Orioles in 1993.

FTI Consulting is based in West Palm Beach, Fla., and has offices in Baltimore and Annapolis. It employs 3,800.

Johns Hopkins Ranks No. 8 Among Priciest Colleges

Getting a four-year degree at Johns Hopkins University will set you back $231,280. That makes it one of the top 10 most expensive colleges, according to CNNMoney.com. Room and board for the 2012-2013 school year is $57,820, a 3.7 percent increase over the previous year. 

Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, N.Y., New York University and Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, Calif., rounded out the top 3.

It's the second time this year that the Baltimore school got on the most expensive college list. Business Insider ranked it No. 7 on its list of 20 most expensive colleges

Port of Baltimore Gets Cargo Boost Due to Sandy

Sandy has wreaked havoc on transportation all throughout the East Coast. 

Last week, we featured a link to a story on how cruise operations were disrupted at the Locust Point terminal due to the superstorm. 

Now, it seems that the storm has provided a temporary boost to the port, according to a story in the Wall Street Journal.

Cargo ships are bypassing New York and New Jersey due to Sandy. "Maersk Inc., the world's largest container-shipping company, has begun diverting its cargo to Halifax, Canada, Baltimore and Philadelphia," the Journal writes.

The story does note, however, that the Port of Virginia in Norfolk is the biggest beneficiary. You can read the entire story here. (A subscription is required.)

Netflix Sees Video-Streaming Spike in Baltimore Due to Sandy

Greater Baltimore breathed a sigh of relief when they missed the worst of Category 1 Hurricane Sandy. 

Schools and many offices closed, leaving residents confined to their homes. So how did folks in Baltimore cope with cabin fever?

Some turned to video streaming provided by Netflix, CNNMoney says. "Viewership doubled on the East Coast, with major spikes in cities including New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.," writes CNNMoney

So what movies are popular among Netflix subscribers in Baltimore? Charm City has diverse movie tastes, with "Tyler Perry's Laugh to Keep From Crying," "2001 a Space Odyssey," and the 2001 French horror flick "The Brotherhood of the Wolf" all ranking among the top 10 movies that are favored more in Baltimore compared with other cities. That's according to the Netflix site. 

CNN Covers Maryland's Gay Marriage Debate

Maryland voters will decide Nov. 6 whether the Free State will allow gay marriage and are now divided on the issue

CNN.com highlighted the debate in Maryland, as well as in Maine and Washington, which are also putting the issue before voters on Election Day. 

"From her Baltimore kitchen, Rebecca Murphy is lobbying legislators, crafting signs and making phone calls as she wages a battle to allow gays and lesbians to marry in her state," CNN.com writes. "As national polls show a shift in attitudes about same-sex marriage, Murphy's state of Maryland is one of three poised to put the issue to an up-or-down popular vote for the first time next month."

Currently, six states allow same-sex marriage and five allow civil unions for same-sex couples. 

You can read the entire story here

Hurricane Sandy Disrupts Port of Baltimore Cruise Service

Maryland residents who seeking refuse from the massive Category 1 hurricane that is pummeling the East Coast were out of luck this week. Flights out of BWI were cancelled and the Maryland Transit Administration is suspending light rail, subway and bus service.

And cruise passengers leaving out of the Port of Baltimore saw their vacation plans disrupted. 

"Passengers who boarded the Royal Caribbean Enchantment of the Seas at the Port of Baltimore Friday evening looked forward to a five-night cruise to Bermuda," writes WBAL TV. "Instead, they left Baltimore five hours late for a ride to the lower Chesapeake Bay near Cape Henry, Va. The excursion became a 'cruise to nowhere' making no stops," the story says. The article was picked up by MSNBC.com. 

Forbes: Baltimore No. 3 Place to Buy a Haunted Home

As if Hurricane Sandy wasn't scary enough news during Halloween week...

Now Forbes and home-buying site Trulia say that Baltimore ranks No. 3 on its list of top places to find a haunted home in the South. 

Another Maryland city, Hagerstown, took the very top spot while New Orleans was No. 2. Huntington, West Virginia and Louisville, Ky., were No. 4 and No. 5. 

So what makes these areas so spooky? Regions of the country that have a higher share of old, vacant homes are more likely to have haunted houses, writes Forbes, which takes its data from Trulia. Roughly 3 percent of all Baltimore homes are both old and vacant. 

"Regions of the country that were settled later and have had recent growth have a much lower share of old, vacant homes," Forbes writes. "That means most of the South and the West."

Baltimore is also one of the top haunted cities, according to SmarterTravel.com.

You can read about buying a haunted Maryland home here

Baltimore Among 10 Most Haunted Cities

Baltimore residents who want to be spooked on Halloween have nothing to fear, according to SmarterTravel.com. 

The travel website named Baltimore one of the 10 most haunted cities. Charm City boasts plenty of ghostly destinations, including Edgar Allen Poe's final resting place, the Westminster Hall catacombs. Then there's Fort McHenry, where haunted apparitions have appeared. 

"Hundreds of years of lost lives and the spirits that remain make the Fells Point area popular among ghost trackers," SmarterTravel.com says. "Guided tours through the maritime neighborhood take you to taverns, shops, and restaurants where things go bump in the night."

Washington, D.C., Savannah, Ga., Chicago and San Francisco also made the list.

Maryland's haunted appeal got another boost recently whenTrip Advisor named Ellicott City one of the top 10 spooky American Getaways

And if SmarterTravel's suggestions aren't your cup of brew, there's also the Creative Alliance's annual Halloween Lantern Parade & Festival tomorrow. 

We just hope that "Frankenstorm" Hurricane Sandy doesn't scare everyone away from their Halloween plans. 

Huffington Post Visits Lexington Market

Huffington Post recently went on an expedition to Baltimore's Lexington Market. The reason? To see the tempting display at Berger cookies' stall. 

The cake-like cookie with fudge frosting has been making its way south to grocery stores in the Washington, D.C., market.

"If you've ever had Dangerously Delicious' Baltimore Bomb pie, the critical ingredient in the oh-so decadent dessert is a little not-so-healthy treat that's been a favorite in Charm City for generations: Berger cookies," Huffington Post writes. 

The article comes with a mouth-watering slideshow. 
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