THREW Mikes EyEz

Original Writings, Images, Video and Artworks of Mike Hartley


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Every town needs one

Every town needs a “Town House.” No I’m not speaking of a Townhouse development. And in most cases even though some governments and agencies might appoint others, there is usually one and or one family that somehow becomes the “Town House.” It might be the biggest home in the area. But more often than not its something special that appeals to all. Maybe a modest home with incredible landscaping or wonderous trees. Maybe it’s the one farm left with a home tucked into the middle of the property surrounded by cookie cutter neighborhoods. Maybe its the Oldest Home in the community. Maybe its the favorite family of the community. Maybe its the local firehouse hall that everyone feels at home because its the central place for community events.

Town House Photo by Mike Hartley

Town House in Sykesville MD
Photo by Mike Hartley

I guess if I were to think about it for my area (Woodstock MD) I’d have to say its two structures that sit on one property. At the corner of Woodstock Road and Old Frederick Road (Route 99). This street (Woodstock Road) is our main street and this is at its entrance on one end of it. So that has some significance to me. When I first came here, I believe it was owned by a long-standing family in the community “The Millers.” The home itself isn’t anything huge but it does sit at the top of a hill overlooking some nice rolling hills, (till a lot of that was developed). It still has some nice views to the side and behind it.

But what makes this special also is that at the front corner of the property is “The Snowball Stand” which has stood before I came here and the 30 years since. The property and stand are owned and operated by the Hill family now. It’s a place where you might see your neighbor more than at home when the stand is open. There is a gazebos in the yard that people sit and gather round or just sit in their cars for the first half of the snowball.

It used to have just a stop sign at the corner but civilization caught up with us out here and now we have a traffic light because we have traffic. Well traffic is all relative. As you can see early on a Saturday morning its lightweight.

Corner of Old Frederick Road and Woodstock Road. Photo by Mike Hartley

Corner of Old Frederick Road and Woodstock Road.
Photo by Mike Hartley

Then again, I’m sure some might want to call the Woodstock Inn at the other end of town the Town House. I’m flexible, I never said there couldn’t be two.


I always knew there was something I didn’t like about Twitter. Which makes me glad I never participated in it.

I’m going to miss driving my car. I might take this opportunity of having shoulder surgery to learn to shoot with one hand better.

I think I’ll try to  teach myself some studio photography over the next month.

Please forgive me if I miss a day or two starting this week.