It’s hard to believe but this year is the 20th anniversary of HonFest.
The very popular annual event is located primarily on “The Avenue,” (36th Street), in Hampden, and on parts of Falls Road and environs. One of the Hampden merchants, Benn Ray of Atomic Books, told me : “It’s a bigger crowd so far than last year’s. Business has been very good.” Ray added that when the celebrated film icon, John Waters, was in his store on Thursday night, the 12th, to sign his latest book, “Carsick,” we sold “over 500 copies!”
As I was making my rounds admiring all of the beehive hairdos, grilled chickens and cat’s eye glasses on “The Avenue,” I ran into Marilyn Mosby. She’s running hard for the office of State’s Attorney for Baltimore against the incumbent Gregg Bernstein.
Mosby told me: “It’s a tough race, but I’m going to win it.”
I know that in the political realm, it’s very difficult to beat someone who already holds the office, but if anybody can do it, it’s Marilyn Mosby. Ironically, Bernstein won the office four years ago by upsetting the then-incumbent. The election is set for June 24th. Stay tuned. There could be a surprise here.
Getting back to HonFest.
It always brings back fond memories for me growing up in “Bawlmer” in the post-WWII era. Invariably when you walked into a tavern in South Baltimore, the barmaid would say: “What can I getcha? Hon!” Everywhere I went: Pigtown, Highlandtown, Harford Road and Dundalk, it was always the same “Hon” refrain in bars, restaurants and shops. And, those beehive hairdos had a stretch of time where they were very popular, particularly in Highlandtown.
For a while, there was a mostly silly dispute in town about who really owned the name, “Hon.” Thankfully, that matter has been settled. It is and always will be the property of the people. Period! “Ain’t that right, Hon?”
Continuing my walk, I couldn’t miss seeing “On The Avenue,” the amicable proprietress of the “breathe bookstore cafe,” Susan Weis-Bohlen.
She was sitting right out front of her New Age bookstore/Vegan-based eatery/coffee shop. Susan led a tour to some “sacred sites” in India a few years back that my wife Ann and I had the pleasure of joining. One word describes it – memorable. Looking for books on “Ayurveda,” see Susan.
Honfest continues on Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. There is plenty of food and beer left and some very talented musicians ready to entertain you. So, just get yourself out the door and get on over there to Hampden, Hon! Another beautiful, sunny day is heading our way.
Please see my Facebook page for more photos.
Bill Hughes is an attorney, author, actor and photographer. His latest book is “Byline Baltimore.” It can be found at: https://www.amazon.com/William-Hughes/e/B00N7MGPXO/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1