Christopher Plummer’s new first

By: Jake Coyle

Regal and commanding even in his youth, Christopher Plummer has turned into an even mightier force in old age. The 88-year-old Plummer earlier this year became the oldest actor ever nominated for an Oscar (for his J. Paul Getty in All the Money in the World), six years after setting the mark for eldest acting winner (for his coming-out 75-year-old in Beginners). The King Lear phase of ... READ MORE

Fun facts to know and tell about Baltimore

By: Carol Sorgen

Whether you’re a lifelong Baltimorean or a recent transplant, chances are you don’t know everything about your hometown. How many of these fun facts did you already know? Fort McHenry is the birthplace of the American national anthem, written by Francis Scott Key during the War of 1812, when the Fort was defending the Baltimore harbor. Baltimore is home to the USS... READ MORE

Mid-summer care of blooming ornamentals

By: Lela Martin

Let’s face it: July in metro Richmond is hot and humid. If you’re like me, you prefer the A/C to the sweltering heat. However, you can’t just let your garden go to seed — literally. There are a few tasks, um, “opportunities,” that take just a few minutes in the cooler hours of the morning or early evening to keep your containers and color flower beds healthy and... READ MORE

Exploring Napoleon’s power and splendor

By: Martha Steger

A revolutionary republican who crowns himself Emperor of France — what kind of revolutionary is that? Whatever our opinions of Napoleon, we can no doubt agree he was an epic figure deserving epic treatment. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ special exhibition, “Napoleon: Power and Splendor,” on view until Sept. 3, accomplishes a treatment befitting an emperor. Apart from... READ MORE

Learning what counts from ex-teachers

By: Bob Levey

It’s a snazzy retirement party that a very good friend is tossing for herself. She has ordered grape leaves, hummus and lots of very good French wine. She deserves all of it. She has been dragging out of bed at 5 a.m. for nearly 20 years as a public school teacher in the Washington suburbs. She says her head hurts, her feet hurt, call her tomorrow and probably something... READ MORE

Try these delightful novels this summer

By: Dinah Rokach

Escape into fantasy, revel in the past, follow a detective on his rounds around the Louisiana bayous, join a tour to Cuba with a suspenseful side trip, and enjoy the company of characters created by talented writers. What a great way to spend a relaxing day! Whether soaking up the rays at the water’s edge, enjoying the shade under a favorite tree with a cool drink in hand, or winding... READ MORE