Win a TV by playing the Maryland Lottery at Essex BP

Win a TV by playing the Maryland Lottery at Essex BP
The Essex BP, located at 220 Eastern Blvd. in Essex. Photo by Devin Crum.

(Updated 3/17/17)

- By Devin Crum -


The owner of the BP gas station at the corner of Eastern Boulevard and Berkshire Road in Essex is working hard to let you know that there is no better place to play the Maryland Lottery.

Jamal Khawaja, owner of the station for close to two decades, prides himself and his establishment on his customer service. But he also has stepped up his lottery game, giving you additional chances to win - even with a losing ticket.

The Essex BP runs a second-chance draw for Maryland Lottery tickets, according to Khawaja, through which customers have a chance to win one of two new televisions every month.

“You can win a 32-inch TV whenever you have a non-winning ticket,” Khawaja said. “You can just drop [the ticket] off in the box and you have a chance at the end of the month to win a TV.”

Khawaja started the promotion back in September and said it has so far been successful.

“I’m hoping to keep it going,” he said, adding that he will continue it as long as it continues to grow and be successful.

On top of that, the Essex BP has been approved to pay out up to $5,000 in cash for winning lottery tickets while most retailers are capped at $600.

And if that weren’t enough, the station offers 20 cents off each gallon of gasoline when you buy a car wash.

With spring (maybe) approaching, you’re going to want to wash off all of that dirt, grime and road salt from the winter anyway. You might as well benefit when you fill up your tank.

Khawaja said customer service sets his business apart from other gas stations. Because he has served the community for nearly 17 years now, he knows his customers personally, he explained.

“They come every day to get their needs,” he said.

And the station is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. So show up anytime to get whatever you need.

The Essex BP is located at 220 Eastern Blvd. in Essex. They can be reached by calling 410-686-3244.

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Parker, Pallett, Slezak and Russell - your neighborhood law firm - turns 40

Parker, Pallett, Slezak and Russell - your neighborhood law firm - turns 40
The Parker team.

(Updated 3/1/17)

- By Marge Neal -


In its 40 years of business, the law firm of Parker, Pallett, Slezak and Russell has served thousands of clients and recovered tens millions of dollars for those clients.

But those successes aren’t how the White Marsh-based attorneys define themselves.

“The culture here is that we are a team,” lawyer Perry Lericos told the East County Times. “We are the Parker Team and we are here to take care of our clients - we hear all the time how much we care and we pride ourselves in that.”

The “Parker team” was founded 40 years ago by Ronald W. Parker. Over the years, the firm grew to its current size of eight lawyers - five partners, one associate and two who are “of counsel” to the group.

The Parker firm is the largest law group in eastern Baltimore County, according to Slezak. The eight attorneys bring more than 240 years of experience to the table, with individuals who specialize in different areas of law but are able to pitch in as needed to help a fellow team member.

“Most of what we do is plaintiff work, with personal injury the biggest part of what we do,” Slezak said. “Trips, slip and fall, dog bites, car accidents, that sort of thing.”

Retired Judge G. Darrell Russell Jr. specializes in traffic and criminal defense and also helps out with personal injury cases.

Tara Westra is the firm’s workers’ compensation expert.

“I represent injured workers,” she said, adding that workers’ comp hearings are held before a judge in a separate court system.

While injured workers can consult an attorney at any time during the legal process, she recommends sooner rather than later.

In addition to its legal work, the firm prides itself in its community philanthropy.

“Both as a firm and as individual lawyers, we are proud to give back to the community,” Slezak said.

The MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and the White Marsh Volunteer Fire Company are just two local entities that receive financial support from Parker and Pallett, while individual lawyers serve local Rotary, Shriner and other community organizations, according to Slezak.

The group also offers social events twice a year, with a “Meet the Parker Team” cookout planned for Saturday, May 13, at Parker’s restaurant in White Marsh.

The lawyers stress that they are the go-to local firm, with a comfortable environment and an honest and thorough approach to the law and their clients.

“We really do think we’re your neighborhood law firm,” Lericos said. “You don’t have to go to Towson or downtown, we’re right here, with plenty of free parking right out front.”

The law is intricate and complex and, in the case of most personal injury cases, the insurance companies want to pay out the least amount of money possible, according to Slezak.

“The insurance companies will try to resolve cases early on, while clients are still undergoing medical treatment and are still out of work ,” she said. “They need someone on their side who knows the law and knows how they apply to the case.”

Lericos cited a case in which a client received life-altering injuries in a car crash. She was unable to ever return to her former line of work, which rendered her hard-earned college education worthless.

“We were able to procure a seven-figure settlement for her, which gave her some security while allowing her train to do a vastly different kind of work, and work that would never compensate her as her previous line of work did,” Lericos said. “That’s where our job satisfaction is, from helping people.”

Parker, Pallett, Slezak and Russell is at 11450 Pulaski Highway in White Marsh. They can be reached by phone at 410-335-3800, and their website is www.ppsrlaw.com.

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Auto Point ‘stands behind’ what it sells

Auto Point ‘stands behind’ what it sells
Auto Point Used Cars. Courtesy photo.

(Updated 3/1/17)

- By Marge Neal - 


Auto Point Used Cars on Pulaski Highway in Rosedale is a family-owned-and-operated business that  has specialized in Japanese cars, truck and cargo vans for more than 12 years.

Owned by husband-and-wife teams Cloves and Regiane Da Cunha and Andre and Adriana Wilbert, Auto Point offers quality used Honda, Toyota, Nissan and Hyundai vehicles and usually carries an inventory of about 80 from which to choose, according to Cloves. Other makes are also available. Prices range roughly from $5,000 to $25,000.

“And we’re in the process of expanding the lot with the goal of building the inventory to about 120 vehicles,” Da Cunha said.

Auto Point is strictly in the sales business and does not have a service department. But the company does offer financing and prides itself in its relationships it has with local lenders.

“We have good relationships with banks and credit unions for financing,” Da Cunha said. “For someone with no credit problems, we can get loans as low as 1.9 percent.”

Another point of pride for the company is its standing with the Better Business Bureau. Da Cunha said Auto Point has not had a single complaint filed against it in the 12 years it has existed.

“We have one of the best reputations you can ask for as a used car dealership,” he said. “I would say 70 to 80 percent of our business is repeat customers, and people who are happy with us are always referring their friends and family members to us.”

The dealership at 8312 Pulaski Highway in Rosedale is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Inventory can be viewed at apointcars.com. The showroom can be reached at 410-682-9999.

Da Cunha invites all customers in the market for a good used car to stop by to check out Auto Point’s inventory.

“When we say we stand behind what we sell, we really mean it,” he said.

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