Entertainment (68)

The original Velatis celebrates 150 years of caramels

MP1 1702A glass case displays the various chocolates and caramels of the Velatis Caramel Company. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER SILVER SPRING – October is National Caramel Month, which is just the perfect time for the Velatis Caramel Company to celebrate 150 years of serving home-made confections in the Washington Metropolitan area.

The Velatis store has a varied selection of caramels and chocolates, both in texture and flavor.

Customers can choose either a sugary praline caramel: a dry, crumbly, European-style caramel or the traditional chewy caramel.

The flavors range from chocolate walnut and vanilla cashew to pumpkin spice and caramel macchiato, with an additional selection of caramel frosting cupcakes, caramel popcorn, and baked cookies, all made in-house using natural ingredients and Belgian chocolate.

“We keep our candy the same, no preservatives, just like the cream back in the day,” said owner Amy Servais. Servais, who runs the shop and sometimes helps make the confections, is not the first owner of Velatis.


Cruising down memory lane with classic autos

Rockville auto show 10-18-16Auto enthusiasts admire the vintage cars at the Rockville Antique and Classic Car Show. PHOTO BY PETER ROULEAU 

ROCKVILLE – In addition to various fall festivals and Halloween attractions, there is another seasonal event that draws many area residents: the Rockville Antique and Classic Car Show.

Sponsored by the mayor and City Council and held every year on the grounds of the Fitzgerald Civic Center, hundreds of car owners and members of various car clubs are invited to display their vehicles to fellow auto enthusiasts.

The catalogue invariably includes a wide variety of car makes, models, and model years.

Organizers said due to excellent weather on Saturday, this year’s festival attracted an estimated 14,000 people, a sizable increase from previous years.

“The car show, which began in 1962, is one of our oldest and most consistently celebrated events,” said Rockville Mayor Bridget Donnell Newton. “It’s an incredible opportunity to see so many well-maintained vintage cars in one place, and an opportunity for those of us who don’t know a lot about cars to learn about them.”


Center Stage: Montgomery College mines comic gold in “Bat Boy”


ROCKVILLE – At Montgomery College’s campus theater, the musical “Bat Boy” featured a memorable final performance Sunday.

A tragi-comedy play about a part-human, part-bat found in the caves of West Virginia who just wants to fit in, “Bat Boy” is a hilarious story that pays homage to classic themes in storytelling while remaining a highly original work.


Religious leaders preview landmark "Denial"

Denial 2016 filmTimothy Spall, Rachel Weisz and Tom Wilkinson star in the movie "Denial."  COURTESY PHOTO  

BETHESDA – Local religious, government and community leaders sponsored a private screening of the film, “Denial,” Oct. 6 at the Landmark Bethesda Row Cinema movie theater to highlight increased anti-Jewish and anti-Israel incidents on college campuses.

The film is based on Emory University Professor Deborah Lipstadt’s book, “History on Trial: My Day in Court with a Holocaust Denier.”

It details events after she was sued for libel for calling British author and historian David Irving a denier for his speeches and writings claiming that the Holocaust never happened and there were no gas chambers at the Auschwitz concentration camp.


Center Stage: Discovering photography that redefines the medium

Arts column - photography artOne of the photographs displayed in the "Photography Reinvented" exhibit at the National Gallery of Art. COURTESY PHOTO  

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Although photography is synonymous with documenting reality rather than altering it, the collection of Robert E. Meyerhoff and Rheda Becker challenges this notion by presenting photographs that redefine the medium.

The exhibit, entitled “Photography Reinvented,” is a collection of 35 photographs by 18 critically acclaimed artists. Rather than simply capturing a single moment in time, some of these photos create an altered sense of reality.


Preparing for the annual Halloween fun and frivolity

Tim Burton’s 1993 film “The Nightmare Before Christmas” is set in Halloween Town, a fantasy world where various ghouls and monsters wait all year to celebrate Halloween.

For some employees of favorite area attractions, this fantasy is reality, as they spend a great deal of the year in preparation for their Halloween presentations.

Since 1993, Markoff’s Haunted Forest, a project of the educational non-profit Calleva held on Markoff’s Farm in Dickerson, has raised money to support the community by providing haunted trails and other attractions for its patrons.

While their neighbors enjoy summer barbecues, Markoff’s staff begins planning for Halloween.


Center Stage: Olney Theatre shines with new "Diary of Anne Frank"

anne frankThe cast of Olney Theatre Center's "The Diary of Anne Frank."   COURTESY PHOTO  

OLNEY – For a heart-wrenchingly humanistic performance, look no further than “The Diary of Anne Frank” at the Olney Theatre Center.

Within the first 10 minutes of watching the Franks and the van Daans move into their cramped quarters, all sense of time is lost as the actors’ enrapturing performance fills the beautifully-crafted stage.


The Small Press Expo returns to Bethesda


SPXPO-1aComic book artists and writers gathered at the Small Press Expo in the Bethesda Marriott and Conference Center. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  

BETHESDA – The Bethesda Marriott Hotel hosted the Small Press Expo (SPX), the biggest indie comic event in the nation, where both small-time comic book artists and big-name novelists gathered together to meet fans.

“This is our first time [here] so I’m really excited,” said Linnea Kataja, a student at the School of Visual Arts. “It’s great for [our school] to have a table here so students can have a chance to sell their art and get exposure.”

“(SPX) wants people who have never tabled before or just starting out because some of those people will be big names in the future,” said Tony Breed, the author of the comic strip “Finn and Charlie are Hitched.”


Stone's new movie "Snowden" shows everyone who is watching who

Gordon-Levitt as SnowdenJoseph Gordon-Levitt stars as the title character in Oliver Stone's new film "Snowden." COURTESY PHOTO Oliver Stone’s “Snowden,” a biopic of former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, who revealed the extent of that agency’s domestic spying operations, is a serious, well-made, and genuinely frightening film.

Stone and Kieran Fitzgerald wrote the movie, based on the books “The Snowden Files” by Luke Harding and “The Time of the Octopus” by Anatoly Kucherena.

Stone met personally with Snowden multiple times in Russia, where he has lived under political asylum during the last three years, while researching the film.

Open Road Films, which last year brought “Spotlight” to the big screen, produced the movie.

“Snowden” is framed by the title character, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, meeting in Hong Kong in 2013 with filmmaker Laura Poitras (Melissa Leo).


Local artists gather for 46th annual Glen Echo Art Show at Spanish Ballroom

Glen Echo BallroomLocal artists gathered to display their work in the annual Glen Echo Art Show at Glen Echo Park's Spanish Ballroom. COURTESY PHOTO 

GLEN ECHO – During the holiday weekend, local artists displayed their work at the Glen Echo Labor Day Art Show at the historic Spanish Ballroom.

Now in its 46th year, the show is a lightly-juried festival that displays artwork in a variety of different media.

A percentage of revenue from artwork sold at the show supports the park’s educational programs.

“There’s a long history in the show of artists who are affiliated with the park, and also sometimes they are instructors or resident artists or they take lessons here, and some are just community members,” said Meredith Forster, Education program manager for Glen Echo Park.

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