What’s All The AMP About?

Posted January 25th, 2018 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Community, Events, latest, Preservation Maryland, Tanglewood News, Untangled Minds Foundation
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Imagine being a student that loves going to class…

It’s hard isn’t it? For some of us growing up, high school was nothing more than just a place you go to hang out with friends and learn things you’ll never use once you graduate. But for the students in the Advanced Manufacturing and Production (AMP) Program, going to class is much more than sitting and listening, barely paying attention; it’s about putting your mind, creativity, and craftsmanship to the test while learning practical skills that translate to real jobs after high school.

If you were to walk into our event this past week, you would have seen a group of students passionate about making the most of their skills, and excited to start building their dreams (literally and figuratively) in the coming week. At Tanglewood, we improve our community by partnering with Caroline County Public Schools and local businesses to give students a chance to discover what drives their passion and build a career that is satisfying and will provide financial stability in an economy where university degrees aren’t always worth what they used to be. By giving students who are gifted in working with their hands an opportunity to pursue and develop their talents, we hope to prepare them to not only contribute to the economy of our community, but more importantly, to empower them to do what they love.

An important aspect of this event was giving the parents, faculty, and participating businesses a chance to interact and get excited about the coming year. And it was a big hit! One parent even said,

“For those who didn’t attend it was a missed opportunity…this program is really going to change our community and children in a great way”

And we agree. Being able to partner with several other businesses based on quality hand-made craftsmanship with an emphasis on creating a strong sense of community is a privilege and wonderful opportunity to pass on our skills to the next generation of artists and craftsmen.


PRS Guitars

Hinckley Yachts

Winchester Construction

Combined Technology Solutions

REC Inc.

Warrens Wood Works

MD Plastics

Dart Container

Dixon Valve & Coupling


The world is changing, and it’s up to us to make sure students are prepared to take on the new challenges. Another parent described best why we participate in this program,

“WOW – the event was a hit! The attendance was great, and the students are genuinely excited about what opportunities there are when they graduate the program”.


We hope to inspire this feeling in every student we work with this year! When asked about the event, Tanglewood Conservatories Co-founder, Nancy Virts summed up the event perfectly when she stated,

“It really felt like a community tonight. Even though we all produce very different products, we are all working toward the same goal. It was great to see everyone and getting to know the businesses right in our backyard.”


To learn more about the AMP Program, the Untangled Minds Foundation, and how you can get involved visit https://www.untangledminds.org/ and https://www.carolinebusiness.com/workforce/#cctc or join us at our next event so that we can continue to support the community and provide opportunities for growth for all of our students!

410.479.4700 | Contact Us

Why buy ordinary?

Posted January 5th, 2018 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Community, Events, General, Uncategorized
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The Architectural Digest Design Show in New York City is just around the corner! This exciting opportunity is a must attend event for art enthusiasts, interior designers, and families looking for the perfect piece of functional art for their home. Creativity is on full-display from artists and craftspeople of all types, but one of our favorites is Invictus Steelworks. Truly one of a kind;  it can be the perfect décor for your conservatory, greenhouse, or pool enclosure.


A one-of-a-kind, custom piece for your one-of-a-kind, custom room.

In their profile on the design show’s website, Robert Simmons (co-founder and artist), chose to include a piece from the beautiful poem “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley, which demonstrates the fundamental motivation of Robert and his wife Beth (co-founder):

“It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

I am the captain of my soul.”

It is clear by the quality of Robert’s work, and passion with which he and Beth partner with their clients, that these words ring true and can be seen in every piece of functional art Robert creates. Since in 2015, Robert and Beth have worked together to build Invictus Steelworks into not only a place to buy high quality décor, furniture, and gazebos, but also an opportunity to participate in an experience solely focused on the client’s needs. As the sole designer and fabricator, Robert serves as a guide to explore their imagination to design the perfect piece for their home, office,  or commercial project; he is a true artesian.


Starting as a welder apprenticing with a sculptor, Robert discovered the beauty that can be found in a light, unique design, and went on to create works of art that were displayed around the country. As he and Beth continued to grow Invictus Steelworks, they realized that functional art was the future for their business because it gave them the wonderful opportunity to work more closely with clients to satisfy their exact needs, and to build personal, hands on relationships. To make this happen, Robert often must think “outside of the box”.

Drawing on examples from historical designs and craftsmanship, much like Tanglewood, Robert absorbs these ideas and uses them for inspiration to push boundaries and experiment with concepts and ideas to improve his craft and provide the perfect complement to the client’s unique environment. Starting from a simple, hand-drawn sketch, you work directly with Robert and Beth to develop a concept, view several perspectives, and become an active participant in every stage of creation, almost as if you are creating the art and merely guiding Robert’s experienced hand in bringing your concepts to life. It is this commitment to craftsmanship and dedication to you that makes Invictus Steelworks stand out to us. We are passionate about creating beautiful works of art from historic inspiration and bringing our client’s outward expressions of their inner vision to life.


Take a stroll through some of their work. And please, do yourself a favor – check out their amazing work in person at the Architectural Digest Design Show (Booth M802) from March 22nd-25th, 2018!


Contact Tanglewood | 410 479 4700 | Contact Invictus Steelworks | 801 605 8082


An Everlasting Holiday Experience

Posted November 22nd, 2017 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Community, Events, Travels
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Imagine… one room that will shape your family’s holiday experience for generations to come…

As a slow sleepy yawn spreads across the faces of the children, the quiet mumble of adults shuffling around the house reached the excited children’s ears. Grandparents and parents, aunts and uncles, cousins, all laughing and loving as the holiday spirit filled the home and hearts of the family. From under the sheets, the children can smell the holiday dinner, prepared and baked with the special family recipe, and cascading above the rest of the delicious sides and desserts made communally by the family. It is a time for community and a time for togetherness. The children make their way to the conservatory, a place that has come to be known as the gathering spot for family events, feasts, and celebrations. From inside, they’ve watched the seasons change, the trees slowly changing from green to a beautiful array of orange and red, as if a painter runs their brush across the landscape each day. The children scan the beautiful glass of the conservatory and in the reflection; they see a history of preserving and protecting life. It continues to inspire growth not only in plants but in the children and their families alike. Its inspiration will last for generations. Inside the conservatory, the children can see how dreams, hard work, and a community can come together to make something beautiful; a legacy. They dream of a beautiful meal and family moments to be cherished. Through teamwork, their dreams are created every year, and a tradition is born. Just as the architects dreamt of providing a living example to continue to inspire these ideals in those who get to experience the conservatory.

Make the Holiday’s Last

Across the country, people are coming together to celebrate the holidays in a conservatory at events such as:

Winter Light Garden at the Phipp’s Conservatory in Pittsburgh, PA.

A Longwood Christmas at the Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA.

Seasons Greetings: Roadside Attractions at US Botanical Gardens in Washington D.C.

Botanicals and Brews Beer Garden at the Conservatory of Flowers in San Francisco, CA

Holiday Train Show at the New York Botanical Garden in Bronx, NY

Each event is a wonderful opportunity to experience conservatories for their intended purpose; to celebrate with family and friends. Each event offers a unique conservatory to explore and in which to draw inspiration. From model trains, to hundreds of trees, to singing carolers serenading the guests, the holiday spirit will come to life under the encouragement of the conservatories.

Let us know which conservatory your family visits – Tag us on social media!

And when you’ve found that inspiration – Start your conservatory dream project

| Contact us at www.tanglewoodconservatories.com/contact or give us a call 410-479-4700 |

Great Conservatories of the 19th Century & The Architecture Behind Them

Posted October 26th, 2017 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Community, Events, Insights, latest, Lectures, Preservation Maryland
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Will you be attending?

Alan Stein says that the more he learned about building conservatories, the more impressed he became.

The co-founder of Tanglewood Conservatories with his wife, Nancy Virts, Alan will give a lecture on “Great Conservatories of the 19th Century & The Architecture Behind Them” at 6 p.m. Nov. 2 at the Rawlings Conservatory in Baltimore. Wine and light fare will be served at 5:30 p.m.

Joining Alan will be Daniel Russoniello, AIA, of Archer & Buchanan Architecture in Philadelphia. Dan has many years of experience in planning and design of institutional and commercial projects. He has worked with botanical gardens around the country and will speak about the relevance of conservatories in the modern age.

 “Conservatories are not well understood,” Alan said, “and the importance and impact they had on architecture is not well appreciated.” He said he’ll “take people back to when they were first invented, the forces behind their development … and the sociological, technological impacts they’ve had on art and architecture as well as everything from city planning to shopping.

An architect and builder, he said he always liked building things. He was asked to design and build a conservatory. “So we figured out how to build it. And then, somebody else asked for one. After the second one, we fell in love with them.” Tanglewood was founded about 25 years ago. Alan has also written a book, “Conservatories,” that covers the historical development and modern relevance of the conservatory, topics he’ll address Nov. 2.

The Rawlings Conservatory opened in 1888. It is the second-oldest steel framed-and-glass building still in use in the United States. Alan was visiting the Rawlings Conservatory some years ago and wanted to help preserve it and help it grow, hence his lecture, which benefits the conservatory.

People are still building conservatories now. The technology has really changed. Why are people still building conservatories? There must be something important about the role that they play and what they are used for,” he said.

You can learn more about that role at his talk on Nov. 2. He said, “It’s going to be really interesting.”

For information and tickets to the lecture, visit www.rawlingsconservatory.org.





A Greenhouse Gallery Art Auction

Posted October 12th, 2017 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Community, Events, Insights, latest, The Arts
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A note from the Rawlings Conservatory –



Works that reflect nature in several different media will be part of A Greenhouse Gallery Art Auction Oct. 20-29 at the Rawlings Conservatory in Baltimore.

As part of Free Fall Baltimore, the show is free to the public and is the second event in the Emergence Art Salon, which celebrates the synergy between art and the Conservatory.

Indeed, curator Kathleen Hamill, of K. Hamill Fine Art, has asked the artists to showcase work that is influenced by nature.

Preview party, Oct. 19 — The art will be for sale at a silent auction at the preview party from 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 19, which will include live music and light refreshments. Remaining art will be on sale all week at the opening bid price.

The event is a fund-raiser for the Conservatory, with artists donating at least 30 percent of proceeds.

More than 25 artists will participate; for some of them this will be the first public showing of their work.



Among the artists are Wendy Doak, who says she is visually inspired by everything around her. “My subjects vary from still life to seascapes, and my style changes from impressionist to abstract depending on my mood.”

Artist Minás Konsolas develops his canvases by adding and eliminating multiple layers of paint. He creates his textured images by scraping and smearing. This process allows him to paint and draw at the same time, according to his website.

Stephen Reichert’s work includes non-representational markings and circles. Some marks are finely and meticulously applied with brush or knife while others are pulled or smeared in larger quantities across the canvas, wood or metal, with rubber, metal, wood and plastic objects, often repeated numerous times before completion.

The show will also include some photographs by Vivian Doering and other photographers, and perhaps even a performance art piece, Kathleen said.

She thanks the committee that is managing the auction and the hospitality: Rebecca Murphy, Angela Lykos, Mitzie Hughes and Jennie Ray.

Emergence Art Salon

Oct. 20-29, during regular Conservatory hours: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Rawlings Conservatory, in Baltimore’s Druid Hill Park, at Gwynns Falls Parkway and McCulloh Street.

Greenhouse Gallery Auction: 6-9 p.m. Oct. 19

Also coming up: the Rawlings Conservatory will be part of Doors Open Baltimore Oct. 28-29, when more than 50 city buildings will be open for free tours. Details at www.doorsopenbaltimore.org.

Tanglewood’s Tour of Italy is an experience architects and builders are raving about. And so are their clients!

Posted September 28th, 2017 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Client Stories, Conservatory Projects, Events, latest, Steel Structures, Travels, Uncategorized, Windows & Doors
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Have you ever sipped fine wine from the cellars of Italy’s finest? Walked through some of the world’s most influential architectural buildings? Felt the atmosphere of an Italian open air market?

Education. Architecture. Entertainment.

Are you ready to explore the architectural wonders of Italy?


Italy is one of the most inspirational countries in the world. From the people to culture to architecture to the overall atmosphere, we are inspired by their different perceptions. In this tour our peers get to see and experience things never seen before or never realized was possible to create in the first place.

That is what our partners love about this trip – It is an eye opening experience to the possibilities we have yet to consider ourselves!



Architects, Builders, and Designers from Trout Design, Anne Decker, Pyramid Builders, Archer & Buchanan Architecture, and Potomac Valley Builders are the most recent travelers with Tanglewood to experience Venice, Italy.

Also known as the “City of Bridges”, we explore Venice’s covered pontoon wooden bridges designed by Andrea Palladio, a haven for many such as Napoleon, Hemingway, and Fitzgerald. Our partners tour the streets of Italy, admiring the classic and modern architecture and experience the plethora of influences that inspires individuals from around the world, such as the Clocktower, Palazzo Ducale, and the Procuratie .

This last trip we found our way on the outskirts of town, wandering the foothills of the Venetian Prealps and took in the sights of friendly churches and neighborhood buildings.

But that’s not all!

What else are architects and builders saying about Tanglewood’s Tour of Italy?

Our guests also received a vibrant 2-day VIP tour to meet with Brombal’s founders, their crafts-people, tour the factory, and experience hands-on the strength, durability, and fluidity of their steel windows & doors.

Check out their experiences

We all know the importance of being able to see the product before the purchase. You want to feel it, see how it functions in the environment, and examine the quality for yourself. After all, our goal as business owners is to provide the HIGHEST quality product to our clients.

“On so many levels it was such a wonderful trip because it not only exponentially expanded my knowledge about Brombal … but also … Meeting the people that actually make the thing is really important … because if any one of those cogs in the machine go bad the whole project can go out.” – Michael Beidler, Trout Design

From the factories of Brombal to Secco Sistemi and Zannata to the sites of Possagno “Home of Canova” and Carlo Scarpa “Tomba Brion”, the learning opportunities are endless. We interacted with several products such as the OS2 FXD profiles, inclining motorized sliding doors, and EBE.

“Look at the glass guys”, he observes, “those guys making those Amazing windows … it’s pretty cool seeing what their limitations are and what their abilities are because we can take our creative ideas to their tasks … and push their limits a little further, push their product a little farther” – Michael Beidler, Trout Design

Our partners are not the only ones who love the product. We recently finished a beautiful sunroom and skylight feature with architect Gary Lofdahl with Clites Architects PC and their client could not be happier! Gary tells us,

“The clients say the room is like a magnet. They can’t even get the dogs out of the room!”

What artisans like Michael and many others experienced at the Brombal factory was indicative of the high quality that their firm imbues in every product they make. It’s a reflection of their superior attention to detail and pride they take in making some of the world’s finest architecture. Aesthetically appealing and yet rugged enough to withstand the worst weather your home-site can offer.


Talk with our team today about the opportunities that await you and your clients!


Who is the leader in American Classicism?

Posted April 26th, 2017 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Events, Insights, latest, Uncategorized
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Who is John Russell Pope?

Best known for his design of the Jefferson Memorial and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, John Russell Pope set the precedence for monumental architecture. Pope designed the National Archives Building, Constitution Hall, and the Temple of the Scottish Right. Renowned for his interpretation of European classicism in a new American form, Architect and historian, Stephen M. Bedford, described Pope as a “leader in the development of highly refined and restrained American classicism.

Why he is such an important figure in the world of classical design? Take a look at some of the works he’s completed in his lifetime. Great conservatory architecture invites you to linger and enjoy its rich details, fanciful embellishments, and sensuous curves just as these historical details allow.

House of the Temple – Washington D.C. 1915


Tate Gallery – London, England1897


British Museum – London, England


Thomas Jefferson Memorial – Washington, DC 1943


Skylands – New Jersey 1922


The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art Washington Mid Atlantic Chapter is pleased to announce the 2017 John Russell Pope Awards, recognizing excellence in classical architecture, artisanship, interior design, and landscape architecture.

The Awards recognize the best work of individuals who contribute to the creation of classical and traditional architecture in the Washington Mid Atlantic region. On April 21, 2017, the ICAA hosted the Awards ceremony. Tanglewood is honored to be a supporter and sponsor.

As classical architecture becomes increasingly re-discovered, the ICAA offers a forum for practitioners, enthusiasts, and students.



What opportunity do our high school students and local businesses share?

Posted November 30th, 2016 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Events, Insights, latest
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A community group gathered at Tanglewood Conservatories to build a bridge between high school student’s job opportunities and local business needs.

“It was fantastic to see such a great turn out!”

Jennifer, Tanglewood Team

Wednesday evening saw local teachers, parents, students, high school and college administrators, and local business leaders gather at Tanglewood Conservatories to learn about efforts to develop a leadership and entrepreneurial centered skills program for students at the Caroline County Career and Technical Center.

The AMP program is being developed to provide both technical and Life Success Skills training that will prepare students to pursue rewarding, high-level positions in companies across the region. Graduating students will be members of a well-trained, engaged workforce sought after by companies and required for the future growth of our regional economy.

Why is this important to your business?

Imagine… having well-trained, skilled high school students ready to start work for you right after graduation. If you are interested, call us to discuss the partnership opportunities the AMP program offers!


About our Meeting

The evening began with a tour of Tanglewood’s design and production facilities which concluded a series of ten visits by local teachers to Eastern Shore manufacturing companies. The tours were organized by MEPE to give teachers and guidance counselors throughout the region insight into the types of skills needed by regional employers and the types of career opportunities that exist for students.

Following dinner, Josh Zimmerman CTE Business Liaison for Caroline County Public Schools presented an overview of the Advanced Manufacturing and Production program which is targeted to be introduced at CCTC this spring. Five students from the junior and senior class will be selected to participate in the pilot program before the program is introduced county wide.

A spirited discussion followed covering subjects ranging from how to help young people gain the qualities employers seek to how employers can think differently about building their teams.


What’s to come of the AMP Program

At the heart of the AMP program’s Life Success Skills, is an entrepreneurial approach to leadership training which is designed to be applied in any academic or business environment.

Other exciting developments include the opportunity to work closely with Chesapeake College to extend the student opportunities by offering an articulated two year extension to the AMP program leading to students earning an Associate’s degree through Chesapeake College.

Will you join us in our efforts to build strong, successful students and businesses? Give us a call at 410.479.4700 to learn more!



Opportunity for a Change in the Educational World

Posted September 28th, 2016 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Events, Insights, latest, Uncategorized
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Rise Richardson, Director of The Village School in Royalston, Massachusetts, talks about Philanthropic Investing, saying,

When they give to the Village School, high net worth individuals are investing in the future, both in terms of the opportunity for ‘normal’ childhoods, and in terms of changing the educational world.”

The Village School

The Village School is a wonder. In 1989 a group of parents, farmers, scientists, writers and local business people gathered and over time created a new kind of school.

It was designed to be a “…model for people in rural areas to give opportunities for community and kids to achieve,” according to Richardson.

village-school-kids-1Serving preschool through 6th grade, the school recognizes the need for children to be part of a community and to be connected to the farming, forestry, stewardship and conservation with the land around them. This is facilitated by bringing balance to the student’s physical, emotional, and mental capabilities.

Using mixed-age classrooms, the school take advantage of the fact that “kids learn from other kids,” she said.

From the start – their students are told they are leaders & held to a high standard, Richardson continued. “Our kids have a strong sense of confidence and know who they are and are eager about learning… they do not just study to get a good grade. The students are actually interested in the material and want to learn more.”

The first graduates from The Village School are now 26-27 years old. Most have gone off to the college of their dreams and have succeeded in their fields – they are leaders, according to Richardson.  “They take ownership and responsibility,” a skill taught at the school, she commented.

Funding and building

When the school was established it was housed in an old town-owned schoolhouse, nicely melding tradition with new ideas. However, the city has developed a need for that property and has set a tentative deadline of September 2017 the village school planfor the school to vacate.

Back in 1998 the school was able to buy some 55 acres on which to build a new, expanded school (in May 2017), and eventually, a future campus for adult learning.  The city’s needs created the opportunity for The Village School to start planning how to use their property.

Now the plans are in place, permits just issued, and groundbreaking for the new school is scheduled for Spring, 2017.

Funding and financing is in place, but subject to some strict deadlines. Richardson said,

Good news, we just raised another 200K!  We need 200K more to get to the total of 500K that the bank wants to see before their loan of 750K kicks in and we can break ground and start building. We are building the complete five classroom school for the low price of $1,800,000 (!) using local contractors and skilled volunteers.”

The sooner that additional $200,000 + can be raised, the sooner they can actually start building, subject to Massachusetts weather of course. Larger contributions can help free the school from the burden of a huge bank loan with large payments, so the school can focus energy and resources on children and developing programs for them.

Why we love this project!

We love what’s been done at The Village School. Even more impressive are their plans for the new campus. We support their goals of connecting kids to the land and teaching meaningful conservation and are impressed and delighted with their goal of endowed scholarships.

We were delighted to make an initial contribution of $15,000 to The Village School!

In many ways our commitment and support of both the Caroline County Public Schools and County Economic Development Department to assist in training and providing resources thorough their AMP program for high school students are similar because of their focus on The Village Schoolstudent achievement. Each one invests in our youth’s future and the future of our communities.

That’s why we are standing behind The Village School and encouraging everyone to speak with Rise Richardson to learn more about their efforts at 978 249 3505.

There is also the possibility of naming rights to their new school with the right contribution. Imagine the whole school named for someone you love and respect, or highlighting your company’s vision.

Discover more specifics about The Village School building plans here. You can also make a tax deductible donation on that page. For setting up substantial donations and pledges, contact the school directly.