Now that we’ve made it through the star-spangled War of 1812 anniversary celebrations, we can move on with our lives. Case in point: The current Maryland license plate– you know, the busy-looking red and blue one with the bombs bursting in air and all that — is due to expire in just a few short months, according to the MVA. This look has been standard-issue to anyone being issued new plates since 2010. So what comes next?
The Orioles have teamed up with the MVA to offer Marylanders special edition license plates featuring the recently revived cartoon bird logo. They’re $50 (with half the cost going to charity) and come with a random four-digit number. But if you were hoping for 0001 (the first plate made), or your favorite player’s number — say, 0010 (Adam Jones), 0021 (Nick Markakis), or 0032 (Matt Wieters) — you’ll have to enter an auction.
The Orioles plate will join two other “special interest” license plates currently available here, “Treasure the Chesapeake, which supports the Chesapeake Bay Trust, and “Our Farms, Our Future,” which supports the Maryland Agricultural Education Foundation. (Me, I’ve got “Historic” plates, which supports me not having to go through Maryland’s notorious inspection process.)
And by the way, if you were looking for a definitive, complete online reference of Maryland license plates through the ages — I mean, you’re probably not, but what I’m saying is if you were — Marylander Rick Kretschmer’s License Plate Archives will absolutely blow your mind.
Next time you need to get your driver’s license renewed, make sure that you and your vehicle aren’t set on autopilot straight to the same place you’ve always gone. If you do, you’ll just end up taking a stroll down memory lane, and maybe down a few aisles at Shopper’s. After 40 years in the Mondawmin location, the Motor Vehicle Administration has packed its bags and eased on down the road to a new Park Heights location at the Hilltop Shopping Center on Reisterstown Road. The new location is intended to keep the MVA in the city proper and also as part of the revitalization of the Park Heights community. Sad to see them move, but the new location has plenty of service windows, a bigger parking lot, and access to public transportation. Plus, the Park Height’s location is the MVA’s first with a 24-hour self-service kiosk where you can renew or return your license plates, get a copy of your driving record, and almost everything MVA-related that doesn’t require a test.