Arts and culture of Maryland

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American Film Institute Silver Theater

The arts and culture of Maryland are varied; they are not just limited to metropolitan areas, but can also be experienced throughout the state. There is an eclectic mix of southern and northern American cultures influenced by its foundation as a Catholic colony.[1]

The main cultural centers include The American Film Institute, located in Silver Spring; The Filmore, located within the central offices of Discovery Communications; The Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts, located in Columbia; and The Strathmore, a cultural and artistic institution, located in Bethesda. The Strathmore was founded in 1981, and consists of two venues: the "Mansion" and the "Music Center."[2]


English is the most widely spoken language; however, Spanish is spoken in small regions within the Washington, DC - Baltimore corridor. 87.4% of the population speaks only English at home, while 4.7% speak Spanish. The remaining 7.9% are composed of 15 other reported languages, with French being the most common and Arabic being the least common.[3] Southern Maryland, the Eastern Shore and Western Maryland have Southern accents and are influenced by southern culture.


There are several music festivals in Maryland. A jazz festival is held in Silver Spring on the second Saturday in September.[4] In Takoma Park, a folk festival has been held annually since 1978. This festival was founded by Sam Abbott, former mayor of the city and a civil-rights activist.[5] In addition to hosting concerts by musicians from around the area on several stages, the festival also celebrates cultural diversity which exists throughout the region, with a wide variety of ethnic food and crafts.[citation needed] There is also a street festival held annually over Memorial Day weekend in Rockville that includes a number of concerts over the course of the three-day festivities.[6]


The literature of Maryland includes fiction, poetry, and nonfiction. Some Maryland authors are: John Barth, H. L. Mencken, and Edgar Allan Poe.[7]

Performing Arts


There are several weekly newspapers in Montgomery County: The Gazette (with versions for Germantown, Silver Spring and Takoma), and an information website called Germantown Pulse, and the Washington Hispanic newspaper.[citation needed]

Popular blogs for Baltimore culture, arts, and history include Baltimore Brew, Baltimore Fishbowl, Ghosts of Baltimore, and Baltimore Heritage.


Maryland has hundreds of libraries. Each county has one or more library per city and each[clarification needed] has their own library system. Each college and university has its own library as well. Maryland's 24 public library systems deliver public education for everyone in Maryland through a curriculum that is composed of three pillars: Self-Directed Education (books and materials in all formats, e-resources), Research Assistance & Instruction (individualized research assistance, classes for students of all ages), and Instructive & Enlightening Experiences (e.g., Summer Reading Clubs, author events).[8] Many of the library systems have established formalized partnerships with other educational institutions in their[clarification needed] counties and regions.[citation needed]


Maryland has hundreds of playgrounds, playing fields and basketball tennis courts available in each county. Many of the parks are public, but some belong to house owners or other private associations. In addition to public parks in urban areas, Maryland hosts numerous forms of outdoor recreation. These include access to the Appalachian Trail, mountain biking in Patapsco Valley State Park, and rock climbing in Rocks State Park (among other places).[9][10][11]


See also


  1. ^ "The Colonial History of Maryland". Retrieved 2011-10-08.
  2. ^ "Strathmore". Strathmore. Retrieved 2017-03-14.
  3. ^ "Maryland - Languages". Retrieved 2011-10-08.
  4. ^ "Silver Spring Jazz Festival at Veterans Plaza | Downtown Silver Spring; MD". Archived from the original on 2016-08-25. Retrieved 2017-06-09.
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-09-10. Retrieved 2015-04-11.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-05-04. Retrieved 2017-04-27.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "Literature". Maryland: A Guide to the Old Line State. American Guide Series. NY: Oxford University Press. Federal Writers Project. 1940. p. 131.
  8. ^ Maryland State Archives. "Maryland Libraries". Maryland Manual Online. Retrieved January 18, 2017.
  9. ^ "Maryland". Archived from the original on 2017-03-16. Retrieved 2017-03-14.
  10. ^ "Patapsco Valley". Archived from the original on 2017-03-16. Retrieved 2017-03-14.
  11. ^ "Rocks State Park". Archived from the original on 2017-03-16. Retrieved 2017-03-14.


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