Day: February 1, 2020

From the Bay to the Blue Ridge, National Harbor

Experience the MGM Grand for Under a $100!

By Lani Gering Experience the MGM Grand for Under a $100! Well, it may be apparent that I was grasping at straws for some subject matter for this column this month. After having received nothing from the marketing and PR gurus for the Harbor regarding February happenings, I decided on taking a solo trip to the MGM. Having limited funds after the spending spree for the holidays, I wanted to see how much fun I could have on a $100. Turns out that I had a really fun time without spending my whole budget. Let’s start with the Conservatory…probably my favorite part of the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino here in the Harbor. The displays are always over the top. Since it’s opening in December 2016 their winter display takes on the annual Chinese New Year theme. This January is one of the best so far with the “Year of the Rat” as the subject matter. It is so hard to convey the enormity of these displays and photos definitely don’t do them justice but I tried with the ones you see here. Keep in mind that these displays fill a 2 story plus space. This year there is a water feature and an animated bird that moves its head back and forth. One can sit in and around this space for an extended period of time and just chill. And….it’s FREE! I was a bit hungry and since I was on my budget, I decided to forego Ginger and TAP and head to the National Market aka the Food Court for a burger and beer at the Shake Shack. The beauty of this dining section is that it has reasonably priced good eats and is usually pretty fast when it comes to service. The afternoon I was there it…

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Arts & Entertainment, High Notes

Wasting Time by The Mowgli’s 

By Ron Powers Wasting Time by The Mowgli’s I was going through the new release section of Spotify the other day and the art for a new single called “Wasting Time” caught my eye. The song is by Los Angeles based pop-rock band The Mowgli’s and it hooked me the instant I pressed play. I haven’t paid much attention to The Mowgli’s in the past but the power-pop fun of “Wasting Time” has made me a fast fan. Interestingly, “Wasting Time” is the second track The Mowgli’s have released since their former lead singer left the band. The song serves as strong evidence that the band’s appeal comes from something bigger than any one member. This band is a true collaboration and not just another one-man show.    Vocalist/guitarist Josh Hogan is responsible for the basic idea of “Wasting Time”. According to Hogan, the melody hit him while he was out walking his dog. He quickly recorded the idea with his phone and later brought it to rehearsal where a friend of the band started playing chords under his voice recording. Hogan says the song came together quickly and practically wrote itself after that. “Wasting Time” is about being stuck in the day-to-day rat race – something most everyone can relate to from time to time. The lyrics are made up of simple well-placed words that are easy to understand. This further adds to the song’s accessibility. We don’t need or want every band to be as innovative and experimental as Radiohead or Sigur Rós. That’s part of why I like The Mowgli’s. No one is asking you to overthink it. “Wasting Time” is a straightforward power pop-rocker that does not disappoint. The song’s structure begins with a quick four-bar intro consisting of catchy vocals and ambient synth chords. These…

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Business Profile, Personality Profile

Tap Those ASSets: Emerging from ‘Prison’ to Becoming an Entrepreneur, Investor, and Savings Passionista

L. Tia Blount is a force to be reckoned with. I met Tia a few weeks ago after I had been eavesdropping on the conversation she was having sitting next to me and she immediately had me in awe. In the course of the 26 years that I have been associated with the Old Town Crier, I have had the opportunity to meet an assortment of fascinating people who have wonderful stories to tell. When I approached Tia about being a candidate for a Personality Profile, little did I know where it would lead. I asked her to send me some more info about herself as resource material but when I got what you are reading in this month’s column I decided no one could tell her story better than she. This was first published in Amazon best seller “Desire, Discipline & Determination: Lessons from Bold Thought Leaders”. Enjoy the read. – Lani Gering, Co-Publisher By L. Tia Blount Tap Those ASSets: Emerging from ‘Prison’ to Becoming an Entrepreneur, Investor, and Savings Passionista “When I grow up, I want to be visible,” I would mumble inaudibly. Strange coming from a five-year-old girl. Typically, at that age, thoughts turn to becoming a doctor, lawyer, or even a princess. I was born in the late 70s and raised by a single parent in a low-income household in southeast Washington, DC. During those days—many fell victim to the crack cocaine epidemic in the District—either becoming users or dealers, an inevitable fate that didn’t appear to be open to revision, and where both sides were met with disastrous ends. My mother worked tirelessly to move us out of “the projects.”  Those long work hours often translated into nights, or even weeks, at my grandmother’s house. My beloved grandmother was a mother of 14 children,…

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