Wednesday, November 23, 2022

In Praise of the Unexpected

The Poinsettia Tree is back at the Mall. The Merriweather District has already hosted the ceremonial lighting of their Christmas Tree. Political signs have been replaced by ones that say, “We hang Christmas lights.” But that’s not all. The holidays have exploded into my social media feeds. Navigating actual content while avoiding distraction from carefully targeted adverts is beginning to feel like an epic quest. It’s mentally exhausting.

Lucy Van Pelt: Look, Charlie, let's face it. We all know that Christmas is a big commercial racket. It's run by a big eastern syndicate, you know. - - A Charlie Brown Christmas 

So why did I get so excited by this*? Probably because it was so unexpected. From The Snowball Stand in Woodstock:

Wreaths and trees are here! Come to us for your Christmas decorations needs… get a hot beverage, snowball, or ice cream while you are looking!

I had a bit of a chuckle when I realized that the usual fluctuations of Maryland weather make it perfectly acceptable to offer your choice of summer or winter refreshment. At this very moment I wouldn’t want a snowball. But, you never know…

Aren’t snowball stands seasonal? I’d thought so until now. I took a look at their Facebook page.

Hmm…they were still open on September 1st when County Executive Calvin Ball stopped by to recognize their success as a valued Howard County small business.

On October 12th they were still open for snowballs and…pumpkins?

They hosted Fall festivals on several weekends in October.

I love the tag line, “And don’t forget about the Snowballs and Ice Cream.”

On November 9th, this announcement:

Don’t forget, fresh cut Christmas trees and wreaths will be coming to the stand soon!

And then, the big reveal:

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… at the snowball stand!

This is small business diversification at its finest. The Snowball Stand - - not just for summer anymore.

I did a little digging around on Google and found this article from 2001 on the Granite Historical Society Website, which indicates that The Snowball Stand had traditionally closed at the end of September. So, is extending into Fall and the holidays a new venture this year?

There’s some other fun stuff in there, including yet another mention of the locally famous Clark family. Granite? Yeah, I didn’t know about that, either. Or the Nike Missile Base.  


True confession: I’ve never been to the Snowball Stand. I have a bit of territorial loyalty to Pete’s Snowballs, and besides, Woodstock isn’t exactly on my side of town. I realize now that a trip to the Snowball Stand is every bit as necessary as my recent pilgrimage to Cindy’s Softserve in Elkridge. I may wait until it’s warmer to try one of their snowballs, though.

The Snowball Stand is located 1970 Woodstock Rd Woodstock, Maryland. You can learn more about them on Facebook and Instagram.

Have any good Snowball Stand memories? Did you know they’re open for holiday shopping this year? Let me know.

Village Green/Town² Comments

*All photos from The Snowball Stand’s Facebook page.

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