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Update: I just ran 23 miles, much of it on the Baltimore Marathon course, finishing my longest run in preparation for the marathon. (Now it's taper time!). I returned to Baltimore 10 seasons ago after growing up here and swearing I'd never return because I was offered the job of playing principal oboe with one of the finest orchestras in the country. I still have a lot of mixed feelings about Baltimore, but there is no better way to get to know a city than training for a marathon in it. Today, I ran the most affluent and beautiful parts of the city, as well as the most depressed, boarded-up, crime-ridden areas. It struck me over and over again how badly this City needs the arts. This is a cool city with a lot of potential and too many problems. Karl Paulnack states it much more eloquently than I could here:
The BSO has taken huge cuts in personnel, salary, and working conditions since I arrived 10 seasons ago in an attempt to stave off the problems being experienced at the moment in lockouts in Indianapolis, Atlanta, and now Chicago, and potentially soon in Minneapolis and St. Paul, too. I feel we may fall off the map when our contract expires next summer. I hope you will consider supporting the BSO, or other arts organizations in Baltimore, or in your own city, whether that might be a great orchestra like Chicago or a community orchestra or art museum, or whatever. It is so important to our society and quality of life, and arts organizations need private support no matter whom you choose to vote for in our upcoming election. Please consider donating the cost of a couple Starbucks trips to your local arts organization that you love.