Wolf Trap has the distinction of providing some of the best summer theater in the country. Less known is the income provided the Fairfax County Police Department from the parking tickets issued on Trap Road every night that Wolf Trap has performances. Each parking violation is worth $25 to the county.

I estimate, based on my experience one recent evening, that at least $3,000 worth of tickets is issued in one night. Since Wolf Trap has at least 50 performances per season, we are talking about income of $150,000. Not a shabby contribution to the county coffers.

This is not a letter of commendation for the entrepreneurial activities of the county police. Rather, it is a warning to the unsuspecting devotee of the arts who arrives late, sees hundreds of cars parked on the shoulder and median strip in a rural setting and assumes it is both appropriate and legal to park there. National Park Service personnel offer no assistance, being occupied elsewhere. And, of course, county police appear only after the performances begin, when the real profit of the evening can be made.

My conclusion is that the name Trap Road was well chosen.