About Frederick and the surrounding area
College towns are known for their youthful, intellectual energy, and Hood's community of Frederick, Md., is no exception. Frederick boasts a modern sensibility, a love of learning, a diverse population and a vibrant cultural scene. But Frederick, considered one of America's great small cities, is also part of the Catoctin Mountain National Scenic Byway and is a certified Maryland Heritage Area. Established as a frontier town by English and German settlers in 1745, Fredericktowne, as it was first known, served wagon train parties crossing the then-unexplored Allegheny Mountains. Architecture in the city's 50-block historic district is nationally renowned.
The City of Frederick hosts a unique mix of heritage and youthfulness, entertainment, culture, history and recreation. Students head downtown to shop, sample fare at any number of eclectic restaurants and cafés, hear local bands and attend special events hosted by the city. Numerous cultural events and performances take place at the Weinberg Center for the Arts, the Maryland Ensemble Theatre and the Delaplaine Visual Arts Center.
The Frederick community has been nationally recognized in a number of categories, including:
- In 2002, recognized as one of America’s Dozen Distinct Destinations by the National Trust for Historic Preservation;
- In 2005, named one of the Great American Main Streets by the National Trust for Historic Preservation;
- In 2007, designated a Preserve America Community;
- In 2007, named one of the Great Places in America in the neighborhood category by the American Planning Association;
- In 2010, named one of the Top 10 Great Neighborhoods by the American Planning Association;
- In 2011, ranked number eight in the Top 25 Small Art Cities in the United States by AmericanStyle magazine;
- In 2012, recognized as a bicycle friendly community by the League of American Bicyclists;
- In 2012, named to the Maryland Green Registry by the state of Maryland;
- In 2013, named among America's best resurging small towns by CNN, noting the town's nearly chain-proof red brick commercial district lined with indie shops and destination restaurants;
- In 2013, awarded a Community Excellence Award for the Frederick History Bicycle Loop Program by the Maryland Municipal League;
- In 2013, named one of the Top 100 Best Places to Live by Livability.com;
- In 2013, earned a Sustainable Maryland certification by the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland for its efforts to seek cost-effective and strategic ways to protect its natural assets and revitalize the community;
- In 2013, ranked number one in Forbes Magazine's "America's Safest, Most Secure Places to Live;"
- In 2013, the Bethesda-Gaithersburg-Frederick area was recognized as the no. 1 most secure community among the nation's largest metropolitan areas by Farmer's Insurance Group Companies;
- In 2014, Frederick County was named the ninth-best county in the nation by Movoto Real Estate. The ranking was based on unemployment rate, median household income, median rent, median home price, percentage of families below the poverty line and high school graduation rate; and
- In 2014, the Frederick-Rockville-Silver Spring area was named the fourth healthiest metropolitan area in the nation by bestvalueschools.com. The ranking was based on a survey that took into consideration physical activity; active smokers; body weight; incidence of heart disease, diabetes and depression; and fruit and vegetable consumption.
The city of more than 65,000 is the seat of government of Frederick County—the largest of Maryland's counties. It is also the eighth-largest city in Maryland and an hour's drive from the busy cities of Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, which make Hood's location an asset to students' educations as there are countless opportunities for internships, experiential learning and research.
In this setting—among mountains, rolling farmlands and rivers—students enjoy the outdoors in all seasons. Popular activities include camping, hiking, boating, swimming, biking, picnicking, playing tennis and other sports.
For information on Frederick County attractions, stop by the Visitor Center at 19 East Church St., located across the street from Winchester Hall, call 800-999-3613 or visit the Frederick Tourism website.