My Weekend with Visit Annapolis

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Main Street on the first day of our trip.

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Prince George Street right now- hydrangeas in full bloom.

I was recently asked by Visit Annapolis to spend a couple of days touring my hometown. Even though I live here, I was really excited to see the city from a different perspective and try out things I've never done before.

Let me just start by saying that our two days (Friday and Saturday) were PACKED with food and fun. They did such a good job planning everything for us- I did more on this trip than I usually do in a month. To set the mood, commissioning week for the Naval Academy had just started and it was VERY rainy. 

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Our meal at Iron Rooster- I got the Rooster and a Biscuit. The chicken and waffles are also really good!

We started off with a late lunch at Iron Rooster. This is the perfect place and location to take anyone visiting Annapolis- it's right by City Dock and the second floor has a beautiful view of Ego Alley. 

They brought out both the brown sugar and mixed berry house made pop-tarts- I have had them both many times and can't choose a favorite.

The out-of-town bloggers (Melanie, Jen, Lacey, and Lauren) were all staying at the brand new Hilton Garden Inn Downtown- located on West Street in the arts district- and I heard great things. It has a boutique feel and nautical details, definitely look into it if you are visiting.

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Bancroft Hall at the Naval Academy- one of the most beautiful buildings I've ever seen.

Our next stop was the Naval Academy for an official walking tour. It was raining heavily and we were moving from place to place quickly, so I didn't get many photos.

I've been on the campus many times (make sure you have an official photo ID to get on), but this was my first time on the tour. It was really well done and everything I learned was interesting.

I especially liked the survival tips- like you have 30 minutes to swim away from a sinking ship (I think a big military one) before you get sucked under. I wrote that one down for future reference.

Bancroft Hall and the chapel are always my favorite buildings to visit.

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The Schooner Woodwind was featured in the movie Wedding Crashers.

After our walking tour, we had a sunset cruise planned. It was windy, pouring, and choppy. I still wanted to go, but a few bloggers backed out.

In the end, it was Erin, Melanie, and me on the Schooner Woodwind, plus the captains and crew. I LOVED this part of our trip. We were completely soaked through and sharing stories of travel adventures. Our captains were so skilled and I'd trust them in the worst weather conditions. Plus everything was super private- there were only 7 of us on a big boat- so it felt very intimate. Highly recommend. I'm sure it's okay on a sunny day, too.

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Our captain on our rainy, blustery sailing voyage.

After a hot shower, we all met up at Carpaccio's for a huge, late Italian dinner and to talk about our trip so far.

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The smoked salmon- catered by Main and Market- was the best I've ever had.

The next day, a few bloggers opted in for a walking tour of the historic district with Watermark, but I skipped this part because I had a scheduling conflict.

We then met up at Lightbox Studio, decorated by Maine Cottage and catered by Main and Market, for a private painting lesson with Kim Hovell.

This space is gorgeous and available to rent for photoshoots and events.

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Personal painting class with Kim Hovell.

I've now done three oyster painting classes with Kim! She does them regularly at Maryland Hall- they sell out quickly so buy tickets as soon as they are announced!

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The Annapolis Maritime Museum.

Afterwards, we visited the Annapolis Maritime Museum for an oyster happy hour. This. Was. Lovely. I'd somehow never been and was blown away by the hospitality.

The space has a lot of historical significance, is situated right on the water in Eastport, and is a great resource for bay preservation. Everyone needs to visit if they are in town!

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Oysters and a beautiful spread provided by the wonderful people at the Maritime Museum.

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Oyster anatomy lessons are NOT recommended before you eat oysters.

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The museum used to be the McNasby oyster packing house (opened for business in 1918)- the company was named after Mac McNasby's wife, Pearl Sherbondy. These cans are beautiful!

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Jay Fleming's photographs capture the spirit of the Chesapeake Bay so well. He has a permanent display at the museum.

Our next stop was Boatyard Bar and Grill for dinner. This is a great neighborhood seafood spot- it's very inviting and frequented by both locals and tourists. 

It was the day of the royal wedding and I loved their personalized daily specials menu.

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Boatyard's special menu that day.

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A leisurely Sunday affogato (espresso and ice cream) at Red Bean on Main Street.

On Sunday, we were all free to explore on our own. I stopped in Lilac Bijoux on Main Street and bought a dress (she generously gave us a gift card) and then got an affogato at Red Bean.

In fact, our entire welcome bag was so personalized and cute. The Scout/Whimsicality Annapolis bags were stuffed with beauty products, Visit Annapolis guides, Maryland-themed scarf and sunglasses from Route One Apparel, Lilac Bijoux earrings and gift card, a card for a complimentary affogato from Red Bean, and Kim Hovell greeting cards.

I was even asked to add in a White Whale Slime for the other bloggers- I chose Stingray Skin because it's the most chic and nautical of my slimes. Red Sky at Night is another good choice for sailors. And String of Pearls.

I'm extremely grateful that I was given this opportunity to explore Annapolis in more depth! I have a list of my favorite restaurants and shops here and here, and would recommend everything we did in a heartbeat! 

Thanks for reading. =)