Previous month:
July 2013
Next month:
September 2013

Ocean City: Maryland’s coastal playground is a surfer/turfer’s delight


Ocean City, Md., is only four hours south of Midtown Manhattan by car. But it probably seemed much further until Hurricane Sandy altered many an Atlantic beach holiday plan and made water-lovers look beyond the Jersey Shore. Or maybe it was Ocean City’s “Rodney the Lifeguard” TV commercials, with tanned, toned Rodney rescuing people from boredom, that really helped raise awareness of this beach town.

Either way, conversations with local bartenders, tram operators and other tourist-business types, plus careful inspection of license plates, lead us to conclude that this 10-mile stretch of coastline is more popular than ever with New Yorkers.

It’s easy to see why. The wide, nearly rock-less beaches are clean and free (open 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.). There are designated surf areas (two locations, varies daily), and surf-casting is allowed as long as you’re 50 feet from anyone. That’s not happening midday at the bustling south end of the city, home to the boardwalk, the 489-foot pier and most of the action. For space, try the considerably chiller northern half.

That said, you did not just drive past the state of New Jersey to entirely avoid the boardwalk area. Sure, there are moments of fluorescent hot pants and temporary tattoos, screaming fast boat rides and gull-squawking tram horns, but it’s totally part of the fun. Check out for outdoor movies, concerts, and other events.

There’s something for everyone — just bring sunscreen!

Read complete story on The Other OC: Maryland’s coastal playground is a surfer/turfer’s delight

The country’s top mixologists reveal their favorite cocktails

Bartender William Perbellini of LA's Bar Tosca, at Tales of the Cocktail

“The irony of working behind a bar,” says Washington DC bartender Matthew Ficke, “is that we don’t get much of a chance to actually go out to bars.”

That’s why Tales of the Cocktail, the annual New Orleans event that took place in July (see sample bartender participation at left), is such a draw — booze masters from around the country come together to talk shop, swap recipes, check out what’s new and get inspired.

“I love seeing what other people are doing with the things that are available to them in their city,” says Birmingham-based mixologist Steva Casey.

We figured you would, too, so we asked six barkeeps what they’re stirring up in their hometowns.

Read complete story on Raising the bar: The country’s top mixologists reveal their favorite cocktails

The Future of Design Education: Teaching Innovation

Wedge, by SAIC student Hsi Chen
Ask any student or faculty member about interior design education today and invariably you’ll hear about interdisciplinary collaboration – the merging of specialties - and professional interaction and experience.

“Students want the tools that will help them visualize their ideas in time and space,” says Cindy Coleman, Director, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). “Students also want real world experiences. And, more and more, students want to connect to a professional community.”

Like some of their peer institutions, SAIC has incorporated project-based studios into the course of study. “In these studios, students from different disciplines work collaboratively and the outcome is either a product, a built project or analysis and, or public exhibits,” says Coleman.

Continue reading "The Future of Design Education: Teaching Innovation" »