Monday, December 6, 2021

The Return of Romance, or…


I woke up with this old blog post on the brain and, despite my best efforts, I can’t seem to shake it. So, bear with me. 

From December 22, 2019 - - “HoCo Goes Hallmark”.

There’s been some seasonal joking about those holiday movies for which Hallmark is famous. Their formula has been solidifying over the years to the point where it has become a meme.

I thought it might be fun to give this a local twist. Let’s replace the Green section with “returns to Columbia/HoCo”. 

New let’s add some new choices:

  • To save the family farm 
  • To sell off the family’s original Columbia home 
  • To liquidate a struggling Village Center 
  • To get the family business in Old Ellicott City back on its feet 
  • To challenge a decision by the planning board

Now let’s work some romantic magic as our protagonist “magically falls in love” with:

  • An embattled member of the school board
  • A member of the Howard Hughes Merriweather District team 
  • A beloved pastor of an interfaith center congregation 
  • A visionary food entrepreneur at the Common Kitchen
  • An environmental activist 

Let’s add a category - - local settings:

  • Howard County fairgrounds 
  • Main Street EC
  • The Chrysalis 
  • People Tree
  • Enchanted Forest at Clarks Elioak Farm

Ok, folks! Get to work. Mix and match and tell me what you’ve got. 

What else would you add? Did you end up with a movie you would watch? Who would you cast?


Seeing photos from last weekend’s Saunter Claus made me think I’d definitely want that popping up in a local HoCo Holiday romance movie. Following posts by Marlena Jareaux about Howard County Black History makes me want to have a character who returns to research the history of their enslaved ancestors. And what about settings I hadn’t considered before, like Freetown Farm or a newly-renovated library branch? 

Can I interest you in concocting your own version of HoCo goes Hallmark? (Hope springs eternal.) Or perhaps you’d rather use the same format but shape it into a different genre: Action, Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Horror, Mystery, Thriller?

I probably don’t have to remind you, but please refrain from including any real people by name or any mean-spiritedness. Apparently it’s also the season to get sued in Howard County and I’d rather not have that be a part of my holiday movie.

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