Great Baltimore comebacks [Pictures]
Everybody loves a comeback. And we've had quite a few in the past year or so. Against all odds, the Grand Prix is back with new owners and a major sponsor. Denise Whiting, whose trademark of the word "hon" cost her dearly, managed a total turnaround, thanks in no small part to celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay. Even Power Plant Live, long a punch line for serious Baltimore drinkers, has a new look and a fresh lease on life.
Here are seven of the more spectacular turnarounds of the past 12-odd months, as well as things we wish would come back, and a few items we'd never like to see again.
-- By Sam Sessa, Jordan Bartel, Wesley Case and Brandon Weigel
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Grand Prix of Baltimore
Only a couple months after Baltimore's inaugural Grand Prix, problems started to surface. The race's economic impact wasn't nearly as much as originally planned, according to a report done for Visit Baltimore, and the organization behind the event hit some major financial potholes. It looked like a one-off -- until a group including retired pro Michael Andretti took over, and started turning things around.
With only months to spare, they picked up a few key sponsors such as Giant and, most importantly, Chrysler Group's Street and Racing Technology. Tickets went on sale at a cheaper price than last year (score!). And, since most of the roadwork was finished last year, traffic wasn't nearly as catastrophic downtown in the weeks leading up to the race.
Sure, the race will cut off a huge swath of the Inner Harbor for a couple days. But IndyCars will be zipping around hairpin turns and burning through downtown at more than 100 miles an hour. How cool is that?
There's plenty of good karma to go around -- last week, there was even a bit of good news from the beleaguered organizers of last year's race: They finally paid the last of their overdue city tax bill.
We can only hope that this weekend's Grand Prix of Baltimore comes back for the next few years. From the way things have been going, it just might.