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    The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7234 will host a Memorial Day service at the Bethany Beach bandstand on Monday, May 25. The free service begins at 11 a.m., and the entire community is being invited to attend.

    “It gives us an opportunity to honor the fallen comrades,” said VFW Post 7234 Commander and Vietnam War veteran Fulton Loppatto, noting that their motto is, “‘Honor the dead by helping the living.’ It’s a very important occasion for us. We’re honored to do that for the town and for the citizens of Bethany Beach and surrounding areas to come together.”

    Loppatto said that, three years ago, the late Bethany Beach Mayor Tony McClenny had asked the VFW to hold the commemoration at the bandstand.

    “It’s very nice. We get a very nice crowd of people and veterans from all over.”

    The event will begin with a welcome by current Bethany Beach Mayor Jack Gordon, followed by the presentation of colors by the VFW 7234 Honor Guard. Local singer and artist Jennifer Carter, a VFW Department of Delaware soloist, will sing the national anthem and other patriotic songs.

    “It’s always wonderful to have her. She does such a fantastic job,” said Loppatto. “One song she’ll sing, ‘Sleep Soldier Boy Sleep,’ will bring everyone to tears.”

    The guest speaker will be Vietnam veteran Robert Corsa, the president of the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1105 and commissioner of the Delaware Commission of Veteran Affairs. Corsa served in the U.S. Marine Corps from December 1964 to December 1968, with Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 26th Marine Regiment 4326, and was awarded the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Corsa is also a retired from the New York Police Department.

    “He’s done quite a bit,” said Loppatto. “I’m glad to have him speak for us.”

    Loppatto said state Sen. Gerald Hocker and state Rep. Ron Gray will speak, and Sussex County Councilmen George Cole and Rob Arlett are expected to attend.

    On May 30 at 11 a.m., the Post will also host a Memorial Day service at its facility, for all of its members and the Ladies Auxiliary.

    “It’s a little more focused,” he said, noting that spouses and family members are invited to attend the service.

    Loppatto said Post 7234 has approximately 2,300 total members, including 1,350 combat veterans.

    The services are designed to allow those in the community to take a moment to honor those who serve and have served in protecting the freedoms of the people of the United States of America.

    “We always hope that we get people who have lost a family member, a comrade, or a friend… That’s who I always hope will attend. Obviously, it’s good to have the general public.

    “If you really think about it, everyone probably knows somebody who’s died in a war. Everyone knows a friend or a comrade, a relative… everyone usually has someone they want to take a moment to honor.”


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    Coastal Point • R. Chris Clark: LB students gather around a painting of Lord Baltimore Elementary School at the Ocean View historical complex.Coastal Point • R. Chris Clark: LB students gather around a painting of Lord Baltimore Elementary School at the Ocean View historical complex.The Ocean View Historical Complex was buzzing with excitement last Friday, as all five fifth-grade classes from Lord Baltimore Elementary School were able to tour the facilities.

    “It’s important, I think, for the kids to see physically what life was like in the past, what people had to deal with,” said Richard Nippes, president of the historical society.

    Students were able to tour the Tunnell-West house, furnished with period furniture and artifacts; an 1800s outhouse; the town’s first post office, built in 1889; and an exact replica of Cecile Steele’s first chicken house.

    While in the Tunnell-West house, students were given a tour and then sent on a scavenger hunt to find objects that they wouldn’t necessarily be familiar with today, such as a chamber pot.

    They would also go outside to use a period water pump — to understand that indoor plumbing was not available when the house was built in the late 1800s.

    “Why didn’t they just go inside and turn on the spigot?” Nippes asked the students. “Because they didn’t have them back then.”

    “Imagine doing this every day,” said fifth-grade teacher Shelley McBride to students as they pumped water.

    McBride said the visit to the historic complex was a wonderful educational opportunity for the children.

    “I just think it’s important for the kids to understand the history of Ocean View.”

    Nippes also gave students a tour of the post office, asking, “Back in those days, everyone came to the post office to get their mail. How did the mail get to here?”

    “Letter in a bottle?” suggested one student eagerly.

    “The mail actually came into Frankford. What’s there that’s not in Ocean View? They have a railroad. The mail would come in through the railroad.”

    Nippes also told students that the post office, which also served as Annie Betts’ hat shop, was a social center where residents in the town would gather.

    Students were able to decorate a class hat that was taken back to school, where they would vote for their favorite creation.

    As for what the students learned, 11-year-old Chris Sichina said he was impressed with what people were able to create with little resources.

    “What I did learn is the games they played were pretty fun — how they would use little objects to make games.”

    “How they used the outhouse — that was pretty weird,” added 11-year-old Josh Townsend of what he learned.

    Fifth-grade teacher Dana Lambert, who helped organize the field trip, said the school was contacted by the society to see if such a trip would be possible for students.

    “I hadn’t” know it was there, said Lambert. “This is my first time coming — I think it’s really neat.”

    Lambert said many students respond to hands-on learning, which made the trip to the historical complex so beneficial.

    “The staff here was full of information and very kid-friendly. I think it would be a great trip for other schools in the district to experience.”

    She added that it is important for students to realize that history is all around them — even in their own back yard.

    “I hope that they just understand that history is everywhere. We don’t have to go to the big cities in Delaware to learn about history. Our school has history, the town our school is in has history. Those who don’t live in Ocean View — Selbyville, Frankford, wherever they come from, there’s history.

    “That’s what I hope they understand. A small place like this has a lot, a lot of history.”

    Lambert noted that Delaware history is taught to fourth-grade students and that the local resource will be shared with those teachers in her school.

    Nippes, who hopes to expand the society’s educational outreach, said he was pleased to see such a lively group of students enjoying local history.

    “To me, this is the essence of what we’re trying to do — for kids to realize that what they take for granted didn’t exist. That somebody had to lay the groundwork step by step.”

    For more information on the Ocean View Historical Society, visit www.ovhistoricalsociety.org. The Tunnell-West House is located at 39 Central Avenue in Ocean View.


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    During the 2014/2015 deer season, Delaware hunters donated 604 deer to DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Sportsmen Against Hunger program. The donations were processed into 18,016 pounds of venison, which will provide more than 72,000 meals for needy Delawareans. Division of Fish & Wildlife staff distributed the frozen ground venison to 36 charitable organizations and food pantries throughout the state.

    Venison for the Sportsmen Against Hunger program was processed by nine participating private butchers and the Sussex Community Corrections Center’s (SCCC) butcher shop in Georgetown, which is staffed by offenders who are serving sentences in the SCCC’s Violation of Probation Center and who have been specially trained for the job as part of a job training program.

    Since the SCCC program began in 2005, the facility has processed more than 78,000 pounds of venison, including 3,768 pounds from 215 deer taken during the 2014/2015 season and donated to Sportsmen Against Hunger.

    With the number of donated deer down slightly this season from last season’s 645, nearly 3,207 pounds less venison was produced than for the 2013/2014 season.

    Since the Delaware Sportsmen Against Hunger program was founded in 1992 by a coalition of sporting groups, hunters have donated a total of about 439,016 pounds of venison, providing more than 1.7 million meals to Delawareans in need.

    For more information, visit the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife website at Sportsmen Against Hunger, or call (302) 284-4795.


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    As part of its activities for National Fishing & Boating Week, June 6-14, the Delaware Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police will hold its 29th Annual Youth Fishing Tournament from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, June 6, at Ingrams Pond in Millsboro, Wyoming Pond in Wyoming and at the dog training area of Lums Pond State Park in Bear.

    The tournament is open to youths ages 4 through 15. An adult must accompany youths younger than 12, and contestants must bring their own fishing equipment. Prizes will be awarded at 1:30 p.m. in three age groups: 4 through 7, 8 through 11, and 12 through 15. The tournament is free and open to the public. Participants are being asked to arrive before 10 a.m. to register for the tournament.

    The tournament was established to introduce youth to the sport of fishing and to teach the catch-and-release approach to conservation.

    “Since the tournament’s first year, in ’86, the event has grown tremendously and has exposed more than 200 youths each year to sport fishing,” said Cpl. John McDerby of the Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, which sponsors the tournament.

    In addition to the fishing tournament celebrating National Fishing & Boating Week, the Division of Fish & Wildlife has designated June 6 and 7 as free fishing days, when anyone may fish in Delaware waters without a fishing license.

    Anglers are being reminded that even though they don’t need a license to fish on those two days, those who are 16 or older are still required to obtain a free Fisherman Identification Network (FIN) number, available online at www.delaware-fin.com or by calling 1-800-432-9228. Anglers also are required to comply with Delaware’s fishing regulations, including size and daily catch limits.

    For more information on the Youth Fishing Tournament, call (302) 739-9913. Registration forms are available online at http://www.dnrec.delaware.gov/fw/
    Fisheries/Documents/Youth-Fishing-Tournament-Registration-Form.pdf.

    The Youth Fishing Tournament is part of Delaware’s Children in Nature Initiative, a statewide effort to improve environmental literacy in Delaware, create opportunities for children to participate in enriching outdoor experiences, combat childhood obesity and promote healthy lifestyles. Delaware’s multi-agency initiative, which partners state and federal agencies with community organizations, is part of the national No Child Left Inside program.


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    A whopping 24 athletes earned All-Henlopen Conference honors for the 2015 spring season, with 10 first-team selections, 10 second-team selections, and four honorable mentions.

    As a historic season winds down for the Indians' girls' soccer team, it's easy to see how Coach Kilby's squad ended up with twelve All-Conference players - including freshman goalkeeper Fabrea McCray, who netted first-team honors in not only her first season with the team, but her first season ever playing the sport.

    The future looks bright for the IR softball and lacrosse teams, who saw a variety of underclassmen make names for themselves this season, and tenured baseball seniors like Eddie Hogan and Kenny Rishel capped their careers with some well-deserved recognition.

    Open the attatchment below for the full layout, and be sure to head to http://coastalpoint.zenfolio.com for the originals of each shot.


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    Coastal Point • Laura Walter : To the left is the narrow Loop Canal, to the right, log barriers that will slow the wave action in Salt Pond and help build up this protective strip of land.Coastal Point • Laura Walter : To the left is the narrow Loop Canal, to the right, log barriers that will slow the wave action in Salt Pond and help build up this protective strip of land.A new project along Bethany Beach Loop Canal could see the marsh there slowly restoring itself.

    The Delaware Center for Inland Bays has brought the Living Shorelines program to a small chunk of wetlands near the canal, just north of Route 26. By installing pine logs in the shallow water, the CIB hopes to preserve and even rebuild the marsh, naturally.

    The goal is to avoid “hardening” shorelines with bulkheads, riprap and seawalls, all of which diminish wildlife, said Sally Boswell, CIB education and outreach coordinator.

    In the shallow water, 10- to 20-foot logs were staked in the Salt Pond shallows in a herringbone pattern. It creates a breakwater, so the water is calmer behind the logs on a tiny strip of land that delineates the canal and protects the mainland.

    “They capture the energy of the waves and the wind … at all times of the year,” said Marianne Walch, CIB Estuary Science & Restoration coordinator.

    That includes northeasterly storms in winter and summer’s northwest winds.

    “You can see pretty clearly where the waves on this side are bigger,” Walch said from inside a small motorboat on the canal.

    Sediment in the water can build up behind those calming logs, allowing soil to drift to the bottom and begin rebuilding the marsh. Native grasses will fill in on their own.

    That means the project doesn’t just prevent erosion but builds the shoreline and creates habitat.

    The community was very interested in protecting the marshlands that separates them from the open water of the Salt Pond, according to Boswell.

    “These neighborhoods are all very dependent on this for protection. … It acts as a shock-absorber in really hard times when water would be driven right over,” Boswell said.

    Concerned citizens Chuck Peterson and Steve Piron helped get the ball rolling for the project around 2010 — the manmade Loop Canal’s 100th birthday. Having lived or kayaked on the canal for years, they researched who even owns the canal (three entities: the State, the Delaware National Guard and Town of Bethany Beach).

    Peterson estimated that this strip of land has eroded at least 30 feet in the last five or six years.

    The entire layout was only completed a few weeks ago, although it was begun in the coldest part of winter. And just a few weeks in, tiny fish were already flitting around the shallow logs. Farther out, seagulls were perched together, as if in conversation.

    With that shelter aboveground and underwater, they’ll contribute to the overall ecosystem.

    “This could not have been done without the Center for Inland Bays,” Piron emphasized.

    This is CIB’s first independent Living Shorelines project, although it’s helped with past projects.

    The team got help from Delaware’s Mosquito Control Section, which has equipment that’s big enough to travel over the marsh but can do so without damaging it.

    After a statewide Living Shorelines committee convened few years ago, “We are really gonna be charging hard with it here on the inland bays,” Boswell said.

    This year, Walch will work to identify five more sites, all of which may use different techniques and materials, depending on the conditions.


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    Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Marci Ginsberg organizes a student art show every year at John M. Clayton Elementary School, where she was named Teacher of the Year. Pictured, from left, are: front row, Luis Espinoza, Aniyah Blake and Hayley Sockriter; and, back row, Edgar Flores, Bryan Cabrera Icte, Ginsberg, Ramier Turner and James Luther.Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Marci Ginsberg organizes a student art show every year at John M. Clayton Elementary School, where she was named Teacher of the Year. Pictured, from left, are: front row, Luis Espinoza, Aniyah Blake and Hayley Sockriter; and, back row, Edgar Flores, Bryan Cabrera Icte, Ginsberg, Ramier Turner and James Luther.Although her classroom is at the end a long hallway, Marci Ginsberg’s art class does not exist in a vacuum. At John M. Clayton Elementary School, she uses art to build upon regular classroom lessons.

    When fourth-graders learn about polygons, she’ll teach Picasso. When science classes learn about landforms, she’ll teach landscapes, pointing out the mountains and plateaus. She’s also inspired by current events, such as space shuttle or rocket launches.

    That’s part of what made Ginsberg the JMC Teacher of the Year for 2015-2016.

    “I extend their learning or refine it into another way, and it’s really cool to see them make those connections,” Ginsberg said of the students.

    She works closely with other teachers, building on their lessons. She also wrote module maps, so other specialist teachers can follow core classroom standards.

    “She tries to align her classroom to what [teachers] are doing and the state standards,” said JMC Principal Charlynn “Char” Hopkins.

    Ginsberg has also embraced Common Core educational standards.

    “It’s been tough for teachers. I want to help them move ahead. Not just be a specialist … but a team member,” said Ginsberg.

    Ginsberg said she loves her classes and their creations.

    “I love seeing when a kid plans and problem-solves and uses that brainstorming to create something,” she said.

    Her kids recently painted flowers Georgia O’Keefe-style.

    “I just love walking around seeing how different everyone’s is,” although they all learned the same techniques to get there.

    “Anyone can draw” if they can see line and shape. Ginsberg said she thinks some of her students have “figured out how to look at things.”

    “They do so many innovative projects throughout the year,” Hopkins said. “The children love going to art.”

    Each child has his or her own sketchbook, thanks to local grant funding Ginsberg sought.

    “They’re $3 apiece, but you would think I had given them a million dollars,” she said, holding up the elegant bound books, used for sketching and writing exercises.

    Students only get 45 minutes in her classroom, on a four-day rotation, so she has to make the time count.

    As a fundraiser and a treat for the families, Ginsberg has student art published on different items. They get a free sheet of stickers with their own individual designs, and then families can purchase additional objects, such as more stickers, or mugs or aprons.

    She always enjoyed art, but a professor at James Madison University encouraged her to develop her teaching skills.

    “It’s funny that I wasn’t 100 percent sure what I wanted to do. I can’t imagine doing anything else,” Ginsberg said.

    This is her seventh year at JMC, formerly Frankford Elementary School. She began her 10-year career in education in Worcester and Montgomery counties in Maryland.

    In the past, she’s done everything from murals with senior citizens to coaching seven years of varsity lacrosse at Worcester Preparatory School.

    Originally from the Silver Spring, Md., area, Ginsberg now lives in Ocean Pines, Md., with her husband. A proud godmother and aunt, she loves the beach and home décor.

    Her craftiness extends from the classroom, as she’s painted hundreds of wooden letters for interior décor, made jewelry and led children’s craft parties.

    Ginsberg also loves technology and has helped her coworkers embrace it.

    “I have revised my teaching strategy to incorporate technology in my classroom,” a coworker wrote for Ginsberg’s award presentation. “She pushes me, supports me and inspires me.”

    “Some of the most challenging students leave their troubles at the door when entering Marci’s classroom,” her colleagues said.

    “She’s just excellent with the students. She’s a unique personality. She brings the best out in her students,” Hopkins said. “We’re very fortunate to have her here.”

    “I love my vice principal and principal, Ginsberg said. “They make me feel just as important as any classroom teacher,” she added, also gushing about her supportive teaching team.

    This is Ginsberg’s first Teacher of the Year award.

    “Being the art teacher and getting this recognition is so nice. … It means a lot to me that they value what I do — not only for fundraising and grants” but her work with Common Core and other teachers. “Every teacher here is amazing,” she enthused.


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    Coastal Point • Submitted: Local singer-songwriter Bryan Russo has shifted his focus from radio journalism to his music, performing solo and with other local musicians, while also expanding into creating videos and documentaries.Coastal Point • Submitted: Local singer-songwriter Bryan Russo has shifted his focus from radio journalism to his music, performing solo and with other local musicians, while also expanding into creating videos and documentaries.Bryan Russo is a storyteller with two voices and many hats.

    The first is his speaking voice that many Delmarvans looked forward to hearing every Friday at noon and Saturday at 5 a.m. on his NPR show, “Coastal Connection,” on WAMU-88.3. The second is his singing voice — once described as “a big, bluesy voice that wallops audiences with soulful lyrics that bite.”

    The hats — often trilbies — are what you see and may remember initially, until you are moved by the memory of what he says or sings.

    Until recently, the music side provided spiritual balance to his hectic life as an acclaimed journalist and popular local personality. It was all too perfect, perhaps: a loving wife who runs the Worcester County, Md., branch of Habitat for Humanity, two great kids, a home in Berlin, Md., and a job he loved.

    Now the balance has shifted, and he is singing the blues — telling his stories, quite literally, with greater experiential understanding than ever before.

    “They told me just before Christmas that the show would be canceled by the end of January,” Russo said. “It apparently didn’t matter that I had won 18 AP (Associated Press) awards for them and two Edward R. Murrows. Delmarva didn’t matter.”

    “How do you tell your kids to look forward to a world of work when they see their 37-year-old, hard-working dad get fired because the organization’s new management style values the bottom line over recognized excellence?” asked Russo.

    Indeed, how do you stay positive when the two really good opportunities for new positions fall through because the middle-class income which you are counting on to pay your mortgage is more than they want to pay, even though they know, and you know, that you are worth every penny?

    What do you say when you go on a field trip with your kid’s class who looked up to you on career day and now they say they’re sorry you lost your job and sidle away? Those are the questions that eat at the soul of Bryan Russo.

    “I know I’m not the only one in this situation, in this economy,” said Russo. “But when it happens to you and it’s your story, it can really get to you. But then I think of the people I’ve interviewed over the years, like the homeless man who lived in a makeshift tent, hidden in the woods outside West Ocean City, who almost died in the cold, and realize there are so many who are much worse off.”

    By listening carefully, connecting with his subjects and deftly encouraging just the right responses to resonate with his radio audience, Russo reported on almost every topic of local interest for five years.

    It was the people of Delmarva, their memories, experiences and aspirations who provided the inspiration for his stories. Those stories have ranged from struggling veterans to hard-nosed politicians, wonders of space to precariousness of nature, delights of food to the devil of addiction, and music, art and theater of every description.

    “And whenever a storm came through, my dining room became weather-central,” he said.

    Russo’s last big story was about a blind and otherwise disabled Maryland boy with an extraordinary ear for music and knack for playing the harmonica. It was one that was particularly important to him. He took time to get to know and relate to the family and then research, write, record, edit and produce the piece. He used it as an example of his work to a national broadcasting network where he was interviewing. They asked to keep his material as they evaluated his credentials and salary expectation.

    “I heard from the boy’s dad before I got my rejection letter,” said Russo. “He called, out of respect to me, telling me he had a call from that same organization wanting to do another report. Of course I told him ‘Yes,’ as I wanted him to get as much publicity as possible. But I was saddened when they used my words, almost verbatim, with no credit to me at all. It reinforced in my mind how unoriginal and unethical journalism, my chosen career, is becoming.”

    And so the balance for Bryan Russo, for the moment, has shifted to his music. He plays solo, with a blues band, Bryan Russo & the Tragic Figures, and for a smoother, jazzier sound with Ryan Mete as Bargain Scotch. “It’s all blues,” said Russo.

    “Bloody brilliant,” is how blues legend John Mayall described Bryan Russo & the Tragic Figures after they opened for him, and that sentiment is echoed by their many fans. The Tragic Figures are Brett Conaway on drums, John Sybert on bass and Mike Noyes on harmonica.

    “Bryan is one of the world’s good guys and a real friend,” said Conaway, a born-and-bred local man whose family business is Fenwick Island’s Dairy Queen. He has played with Russo for 10 years.

    Despite being a classically trained violinist and expert pianist and guitarist, Russo still thinks of himself as a storytelling singer-songwriter, rather than musician. He will open for various acts at the Bottle & Cork this summer and can be heard regularly at High Stakes and Matteo’s Salsa Loco, both in Fenwick Island. (His gig list is on his website.)

    But his music alone will not pay the mortgage. So what is in Bryan Russo’s future?

    Perhaps it will be a continuation of work he has started, making videos and documentaries. On his website at www.bryanrusso.com, one can view the initial episodes of “Curtain Call: Historic Theaters of the Eastern Shore.” One is about the small town of Onancock, Va., and the story of its residents’ fight to keep the arts alive at the North Street Playhouse. It is fascinating and wondrously crafted, with conversation, commentary, music and scenery. It makes one want to take a day-trip and go to a performance.

    Brian Shane, Russo’s friend and fellow journalist, films and edits the work.

    “We are a team,” said Shane. “Bryan has the vision. He wants to shine a light on our old theaters and the people who are devoted to them. He is the frontman who writes, directs and sings. I am the back of the house. I think we are part of something exciting.”

    Future episodes of “Curtain Call” will include Dickens Parlor Theatre and the Avalon Theater. When the series is complete, Russo and Shane hope to sell it to one of the national television outlets.

    Russo has a big idea for a documentary. It’s about an important historical figure from the Eastern Shore whose story and music have faded and are in danger of being lost forever. He has done the research and believes it has significant potential. An individual in Hollywood already indicated interest, but it will be an expensive project and more sponsors will be needed.

    “Throughout my career, I’ve always learned on the job. This could be my most ambitious venture yet, the culmination of all I’ve done. It’s like I climbed to the top of the radio mountain and now I’m so ready to tackle the challenge of a brand new mountain. It’s a bit scary.”

    It will be the basis for Part 2 of this story…


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    Indian River High School has shown its technical prowess this year, earning official Project Lead the Way Certification for its pre-engineering pathway.

    “This is quite an accomplishment, because it is first high school in the state achieving this important milestone,” said Superintendent Susan Bunting at the May 18 meeting of the Indian River School District Board of Education.

    PLTW is a nonprofit organization and a national provider of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education programs.

    IR’s pre-engineering program was established in 2012 with funding from Race to the Top.

    “Just to let you know how well our teachers and our students are doing — the first couple of years, each one of our students not only met the [national] criteria, but was above the criteria,” said IRHS Principal Bennett Murray. “I’m just the person receiving the honor. … It was really those teachers and students who did all that hard work.”

    Students from certified PLTW schools may receive college admissions preference, college credit and scholarships.

    As a bonus, engineering student Hannah Davis won the Sussex County CTE (Career Technical Education) Student of the Year Award. With a cumulative GPA above 4.0, the senior plans to attend the Georgia Institute of Technology in fall.

    Also at the May 18 IRSD board meeting:

    • For his support of the school district, George H. Bunting was honored. The former state senator and representative ended his legislative tenure by helping Howard T. Ennis School secure $750,000 for repair and replacement of its failing HVAC system.

    Bunting noted that the school, which serves students who have moderate to severe disabilities, is completely state-funded, although overseen by IRSD. When he inquired about the money, he said, it was found waiting in a pot from another district’s failed referendum. Bunting was also startled to learn that the school had no playground equipment, and he encouraged the district to acquire some.

    • The board approved bids for additional classrooms to be built at Phillip C. Showell Elementary, at a cost of about $1.49 million.

    • Selbyville Middle School unexpectedly needs more data drops (cables for computers and phones) in the two new classrooms, which were approved at a cost of $13,184.

    • When individuals or groups object to certain books or materials in IRSD schools, they can use Policy KLB: Public Complaints about the Curriculum and Instructional Materials to make a complaint. The board amended the policy to clarify that materials will remain in use while the complaint is reviewed, and that the review committee has 45 calendar days to make a report and recommendation to the superintendent.

    • The Student Discipline policy, as approved by the board, now includes Palcohol (powdered alcohol) as a forbidden substance.

    • Retiring teachers and staff were honored for their dedication to the district.

    There will be a special Board of Education meeting Monday, June 1, at 7 p.m. at the IRSD Educational Complex in Selbyville.


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    Community leaders are being invited to a two-day conference in August at Mariner’s Bethel United Methodist Church, which aims to provide opportunities to develop future leaders as a host site for the Global Leadership Summit.

    According to its website, the Global Leadership Summit is “a world-class experience designed to help you get better and embrace your grander vision — the reason God called you to lead.”

    The conference is being broadcast live from Willow Creek Community Church, just outside Chicago, to more than 375 host sites in North America, to an expected 260,000 audience members.

    “There will be 14 presentations over the two days, of various facets of leadership,” said David Humphrey, Mariner’s senior pastor. “We’re expecting something between 100 and 200 people at Mariner’s.”

    Presenters will include Sallie Krawcheck, chair of Ellevate Network, a network of more than 34,000 professional women around the world; Bill Hybels, the senior pastor of Willow Creek Community Church, who founded the Global Leadership Summit; and Adam Grant, a professor at University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and best-selling author of “Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success.”

    “It’s all day Thursday and Friday,” said Humphrey. “This is the second year we’ve done it, and it was received very well.”

    While Humphrey said the goal in hosting the summit is to reach the church’s own leaders, he hopes other leaders in the community will be able to attend as well.

    “We primarily use it as a leadership training experience for our own servant leaders — people who volunteer their time and effort here for what we’re doing at Mariner’s. But we wanted to make sure we opened it up to the community as well, because the various things the speakers talk about are relevant to any leader and can be easily transferred to the business world, government, education, or just normal relationships and family life.”

    Humphrey said the summit is for those who are high school-aged and older. Those who wish to register may do so online.

    “The goal is really three things — vision, inspiration and practical skills,” he said. “The interesting thing about the leadership summit is it is intellectually rigorous and it is, however, practical at the same time. It’s for what we might consider normal people in everyday circumstances, who have some influence on people, which we all do — in some ways we’re all leaders.”

    Hosting the summit is one of many things Mariner’s offers to try to better the community it serves.

    “We have made it our goal that there would be no unaddressed human need within 12 miles of our church and beyond,” said Humphrey. “That’s sort of a daunting task, if you think about it. We want to do the best we can with God’s help. We need help, and we want to help each other to be as sharp and effective as we can in responding to the needs of those around us.”

    Humphrey said the church hopes many people attend the summit and are empowered to lead through God.

    “We hope that persons who come feel equipped to start something or do something that they didn’t think was possible before — some kind of godly dream would be unleashed or sparked by coming to this.”

    To learn more about the Global Leadership Summit or to register, visit www.willowcreek.com/summit. Mariner’s Bethel United Methodist Church is located at 81 Central Avenue in Ocean View. For more information, call (302) 539-9510.


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    Good Earth Market will hold its 8th Annual Arts & Crafts Festival on Saturday, May 30, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the market’s grounds in Clarksville.

    “Two of my long time employees — Sandy Powell and Dawn Pierro — both are excellent jewelry makers. They said, ‘We’d like to do a craft show here. We think it’d be great!’” recalled Sue Ryan, owner of Good Earth Market, of how the festival started. “It was just such a huge success, and it was wonderful for the market. We have a lot of new people who come on that day to check us out.”

    Following the success of the first festival, which had 12 vendors, Ryan decided to continue the event. This year, the festival boasts 35 vendors, selling everything from pottery to sea glass jewelry to photography, and more.

    “We’re going to do something different this year. We used to have it up front on the lawn, and now, with the Route 26 work, it has taken some of our space — we’re doing it in the back field,” said Ryan. “So we have lots of parking and lots of space for vendors.”

    New to this year’s festival will be SoDel Concepts’ Big Thunder Roadside Kitchen.

    “We are super-excited that SoDel Concepts’ Big Thunder food truck is going to be there all day. We are super psyched about that!” said Ryan. “Big Thunder has been on the farm before, for farm dinners, but never before for a craft show. They’re going to be cooking up some incredible breakfast burritos in the morning and will do lobster rolls and crabcakes for lunch. We have shaded seating underneath the patio where people can eat and enjoy the food.

    “I’ve had such a longtime relationship with SoDel and love everything they do,” she added. “We’re psyched to see how this works out. It’s a great little spot. It’s great for them to come out to Clarksville and reach people in our area that may normally not be able to go to the food truck and check it out.”

    Birch Tree Café will also be open during the festival, serving up gluten-free fare.

    “People can come and have lunch while checking out all the local crafters,” Ryan said.

    Those attending will also have the opportunity to purchase tomato plants, as the market will have 13 different varieties on sale.

    Old World Bread will also have a selection of breads for sale during the festival.

    “It’s the bread people line up for at the farmers’ markets. If people are dying because they haven’t had it since last summer, come Saturday! We’ll have plenty on hand,” said Ryan, noting that the bread is also sold at the market Fridays through Sundays through the winter.

    Ryan said those who are interested in coming but not buying are welcome, too. She encouraged community members and visitors to stop by, stroll the gardens and see what wonderful art the local community is producing.

    “It’s a very reasonable show for a small artist to get into. This is a great place for people who are just starting out, or who are just small local artists to sell their work,” she said. “One of the coolest things about living here is how creative people are who live here. The locals are very creative and art-oriented, and that’s what makes our area so cool.”

    Good Earth Market is located at 31806 Good Earth Lane in Clarksville. For more information about the festival, visit www.goodearthmarket.com or call (302) 537-7100. Good Earth Market’s Rehoboth location is 38131 Terrace Road in Rehoboth Beach. That store’s phone number is (302) 226-3276.


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    In a South Bethany election with a broad slate of candidates, three new council members have been elected: Carol Stevenson (200 votes), Wayne Schrader (192) and Frank Weisgerber (173). They are filling three seats for which the incumbents did not seek reelection.

    In the May 23 election, residents and property owners also cast votes for candidates Don Boteler (169 votes), Elizabeth Baker (75) and Joel Danshes (68).

    “They’re all good candidates, and I hope the ones that didn’t win will step up and be on committees and [serve the town],” Stevenson said afterward.

    “Any of the six would have been superb [on] council, so I’m honored to be picked,” Schrader said. “I’m happy that people exercised their franchise and came out and voted.”

    A total of 285 people voted at Town Hall, and of the 61 absentee ballots mailed out, only a handful of were not returned.

    “I’m very happy and excited and can’t wait to get to work,” Stevenson said.

    Mayor Pat Voveris will meet with the newcomers to discuss town needs and where their talents would be of best use on committees.

    “She wants everyone to feel comfortable,” Stevenson said. “I’m excited that everybody’s trying to make it a nice transition.”

    Schrader said he would like to work with council and constituents to determine what the big issues are. He looks forward to “rolling up our sleeves and getting to work.”

    Weisgerber said he, too, was happy to have been elected.

    After they’re sworn in at the May 30 meeting and meet-and-greet, the new council members will get thrown into the work of the council. Their first regular meeting is the FEMA flood plain presentation on June 12 at 6 p.m.


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    Memorial Day marks the official kickoff of the summer season, and if this year’s holiday weekend was any indication of what’s ahead, summer 2015 will be a great time for area businesses.

    “It was great!” said Betsy Clark, owner of Japanesque in Bethany Beach. “I would say there were more people here than most Memorial Days. We were forecasted to have great weather, and we did. I think that definitely helped bring them in.”

    Clark said Japanesque was prepared for a busy weekend, given the predicted beautiful weather.

    “We’re very optimistic about the summer. We think summer is going to be great,” she said. “We were celebrating 30 years of business. We had balloons, we’re giving free gifts, and all kinds of things all summer long. So it was kind of a kickoff for us.”

    Bethany Beach Books also had a great weekend, according to Assistant Manager Amanda Zirn.

    “We definitely thought it was a great weekend,” she said. “All of our sales were higher than last year, which was fantastic. Each day, we did better than the previous year’s,” she said. “We really think it was a great kickoff for the year, and we’re hoping it keeps up that way.”

    Bethany-Fenwick Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kristie Maravalli said Chamber staff have heard from many members that it was a “booming weekend.”

    “I don’t have official numbers, but it really seemed like there were a lot of people in town,” she said. “We operate the kiosk in downtown Bethany, and Friday through Monday we were able to distribute over 400 visitor discover guides. That was up from last year, and we were giving out a lot of information as well.”

    The busy season was also felt inland, at Fat Tuna Grill in Millville.

    “We were very busy,” said owner Karen Diakos. “We had a lot of families down here. We have a play place here, so a lot of them brought their kids down. That’s usually a sign of good weeks to follow.”

    Diakos said that, while the season can be unpredictable, she hopes the strong start is an indicator of what’s to come.

    “We saw a lot of return customers from last year, which was very nice. To see people we’ve seen in the past come back again, I think that’s a good thing for us. They remembered us and we remembered them. It’s really nice.”

    Public Information Officer Cpl. Patrick Wiley of the South Bethany Police Department said the department’s numbers for Memorial Day 2015 were also up compared to last year’s.

    “Overall, we had more calls for service this year, almost tripling the amount that we had last year,” said Wiley, noting an additional 17 calls for service this past holiday weekend.

    Wiley said this Memorial Day, the department had a couple call about suspicious persons, as well as one call for under-age possession of alcohol and one for a disorderly person, whereas, last year, they did not have any.

    “We were much busier this year than we were last year,” he said. “But they’re pretty much complaints that are consistent with the larger population that we have. Our population increases significantly during Memorial Day and the summer months.”

    Maravalli said she’s optimistic for a busy summer that will continue to benefit the local economy.

    “I think with Easter falling a little early and with the winter we had and the weekends we’ve had this spring, it looks like it’s going to be a great summer for all of us.”


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    Coastal Point • M. Patricia Titus: From left, DelDOT Secretary Jennifer Cohan, Bethany Beach Mayor Jack Gordon and U.S. Sen. Tom Carper cut the ribbon on Bethany Beach’s Streetscape project.Coastal Point • M. Patricia Titus: From left, DelDOT Secretary Jennifer Cohan, Bethany Beach Mayor Jack Gordon and U.S. Sen. Tom Carper cut the ribbon on Bethany Beach’s Streetscape project.It was a day more than a decade in the making, as Bethany Beach town council members were joined by state and federal officials last Friday in a ribbon-cutting ceremony that officially opened the Town’s long-planned and, now, completed Streetscape project.

    The redesign of a little more than two blocks that make up the town’s primary commercial district included the removal of overhead utility lines and the related poles; new lighting; reorganization of streetside parking, swapping angled parking to the exteriors of the street and parallel parking to the median; redefined bicycle lanes; wider sidewalks, free of the obstruction of utility poles; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-compliant curbs and crosswalks featuring inlaid brick; and changes aimed at calming traffic in an area with some of the heaviest pedestrian traffic in the state.

    The idea behind Streetscape arose in 2001, with the Town’s beautification subcommittee. Numerous design ideas were floated over the years, with a mixed response from the council and the public. After considering public input on a series of initial designs, the committee did come up with a set of goals for the project:

    • To improve the appearance of the streetscape, creating an “entry atmosphere” rather than that of a street just intended for travel;

    • To relieve sidewalk congestion;

    • To protect the street’s business community — primarily through protecting parking as much as possible; the fear being that if parking is lost, the “high-end” businesses would soon move out, leaving the commercial district filled with boarded-up storefronts and T-shirt shops; and

    • To control traffic.

    But even with those goals in mind, the Town had a difficult time reaching a consensus on what a design should look like. Discussion at various points included a one-lane street, one-way traffic, back-in parking and a traffic circle — none of which garnered strong overall support. The need for a bicycle lane and the goal for parking availability were also hot topics during the discussions.

    Without a strong consensus for any of the proposed designs, the project languished until the council in 2008 found consensus on an “as is” design concept that included only minimal changes. In 2009, they requested that state transportation officials consider the project, but it stayed on the shelf as possible funding was awaited.

    Finally, in 2011, funding was made available, and the council approved a final design, leading to the awarding of a construction contract in December 2012 and the start of actual construction in February 2013. Work largely ceased during the next two summer seasons and was sporadically delayed over the winters due to poor weather, with the goal for its completion set for Memorial Day weekend of 2015.

    That deadline was met in recent weeks, as the project was deemed substantially complete, pending a final inspection on the work and on ADA compliance. A side project included the complete repaving and reconstruction of the roadway and sidewalks in the 200 block of Garfield Parkway this winter.

    Ribbon-cutting

    celebrates collaboration that brought project

    to fruition

    The overall cost of the Streetscape project was $2,352,444.04, according to the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT), with funding on an 80/20 split between federal and state funding, on top of the Town’s own contributions, including the $1.4 million cost to move utilities underground.

    The number of government entities involved in the project or celebrating its potential impact was evident at the ribbon-cutting last week. DelDOT Secretary Jennifer Cohan, Gov. Jack Markell, U.S. Sen. Tom Carper, U.S. Rep. John Carney, Bethany Beach Mayor Jack Gordon, state Sen. Gerald Hocker, state Rep. Ron Gray, Sussex County Councilmen George Cole and Robert Arlett, and Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kristie Maravalli cut the red-, white-and-blue ribbon on the morning of Friday, May 22, ahead of the anticipated arrival of thousands of holiday visitors.

    Bethany Beach Town Council members Lew Killmer, Jerry Dorfman, Joe Healy, Bruce Frye and Rosemary Hardiman, and Town Manager Cliff Graviet were also in attendance, along with a number of local residents and businesspeople, and even some visitors stopped to hear from the assembled officials.

    One theme of those speaking at the ribbon-cutting ceremony was the importance of sharing the costs of infrastructure projects and working at all levels of government to bring them to fruition.

    “Our congressional delegation, working with the governor, had found the resources to make this project a reality,” said Bethany Beach Mayor Jack Gordon of the news that finally got the project started. “And that the governor, working with DelDOT, was able to find that match. And the result is what you see today, with the completion of this project.”

    “This project is a great example of what we can achieve when officials from the federal, state, county and municipal governments all work together for the same goal,” said Cohan. “We are only here today because in Delaware we have a governor and federal elected officials who work tirelessly to make projects like this possible,” she said.

    “The Bethany Beach Streetscape provides a safe and welcoming environment for our residents and for those who visit the beach,” Markell said. “It is a great example of how investing in our infrastructure benefits us all, making Delaware a safer, healthier, more inviting place.”

    Carper said he was proud the federal government was able to help fund such an important project for the beach resort region.

    “The Bethany Beach Streetscape project used federal and state dollars to make walking, biking and driving around this world-renowned beach town safer and easier,” Carper said. “Infrastructure improvements not only help keep our residents and tourist safe, but they improve the flow of business, adding to the economy. That’s what I call a win-win.”

    Carney also spoke about the partnerships that made the project possible.

    “The Bethany Beach Streetscape project will bring much needed improvements to infrastructure and pedestrian safety on the Garfield Parkway, while also creating a healthier and more enjoyable environment for residents and visitors. This project will be a major improvement to Bethany Beach, and I’m very excited that partners from the municipal, state and federal governments have come together to make this possible.”

    Representing the numerous businesses along the Streetscape project, Maravalli said that the project will help local businesses a great deal.

    “Garfield Parkway is the most recognized and congested street in the Quiet Resorts. The Streetscape Project allows for better pedestrian and cyclist access,” she said. “Not only is downtown Bethany Beach safer to navigate, the improvements enhance its beauty and uniqueness.”

    Killmer offered his perspective on the day that was so many years in the making, saying, “It’s like having a baby. Afterward, you kind of step back and enjoy the product.”

    Project’s completion

    caps enhancements

    of downtown Bethany

    Along with the Streetscape project itself, the improvements to downtown Bethany Beach in the last decade have included additional parking in the 200 block of Garfield Parkway, in two lots the Town had used as part of a revenue-sharing agreement with the owner but recently decided to purchase and improve, more than offsetting a small loss of parking from the project itself.

    There has also been work to enhance median and sidewalk plantings, construction of a small park next to town hall, public wireless Internet access there and along the boardwalk, replacement of wooden boardwalk boards with a longer-lived engineered product, use of accessibility-enhancing Mobi mats at dune crossings and the addition of changeable signage at the bathhouse/lifeguard station.

    Additionally, the Town has removed most of its parking meters, in favor of centralized parking paystations; established consolidated areas for newspaper racks, replaced the boardwalk clock and enhanced the bandstand itself. That caps the larger beach reconstruction project that created a new dune and widened the beach.

    Beyond those public projects, the former Blue Surf Motel has been reborn as a combined storefront/condominium project, while the Bethany Arms Motel has been replaced by the new Bethany Beach Ocean Suites hotel, due to open in the coming weeks.


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    Delmarva Board Sports will kick off their 2015 paddle boarding season by being a host of the second annual national Youth Stand Up Paddle Days, which takes place during the entire month of June this year. As part of the event organized by SUPIA, the Stand Up Paddle Industry Association, paddleboard organizations all around the country and in Canada will be holding local events to introduce kids (and their families) to standup paddleboarding.

    Locally, Youth Stand Up Paddle Day will be held on Sunday, June 7, in Rehoboth Beach on Arnell Creek. (Rain/wind date: Sunday, June 14.). On this day, kids ages 8-17 can try paddleboarding for free. Registration is limited to the first 25 kids who register, as space is limited.

    To participate, kids must know how to swim, they must wear a life vest and they must have a parent or adult guardian present to sign a waiver. To register a child, call (302) 260-9008 by Friday, June 5.

    During the Youth Stand Up Paddle Day event, kids can learn about and sign up for Delmarva’s paddleboarding team that will be offered during the month of June. Bi-weekly paddleboard practices will be held during the month of June in Rehoboth and Fenwick Island. The sessions will prepare kids for their first fun race on June 27 at Paddle Second Chance (PSC) (www.paddlesecondchance.com) at Holt’s Landing State Park.

    Each practice session costs $15 and includes coaches, gear and instruction.

    The PSC kid’s race division is free and includes food, beverage, entertainment and a T-shirt. Early-bird PSC race registration for adults is open through April 30; then, afterwards, standard registration is available on the website.

    Delmarva’s Paddle Board Team is a short commitment and super affordable for families with multiple kids, according to Janis Markopoulos, owner of Delmarva Board Sports.

    “Our goal is to introduce the sport of paddleboarding to everyone, including kids, as a healthy and fun way to enjoy family time together along the beautiful waterways of Sussex County. Each practice is about 1 and 1/2 hours long and will cost only $15 per child per practice. Paddle boards, safety equipment, trained coaches and certified SUP Instructors will be on hand.

    “Self-serve paddleboard rentals will be available by reservation for SUP Team parents at a reduced rate during the practice sessions, so bring the whole family,” she added.

    Delmarva’s Paddle Board Team is currently seeking volunteers and business sponsors with experience in Little League team sports management, to help get the new team up and running. Volunteers can call Janis at (302) 260-9008. For more information on Delmarva’s Paddle Board Team or to sign up, check it out on the web at http://www.delmarvaboardsportadventures.com/paddle-board-team/ or call the shop (302) 260-9008. Space is limited.


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    DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers between May 18 and 24 made 2,784 contacts with anglers, boaters and the general public, including 667 vessel boardings for boating safety and fishing regulation compliance checks. Officers responded to 108 complaints and issued 94 citations.

    Incidents of particular note were:

    • On May 23, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers arrested Dean Millard, 57, of Birdsboro, Pa., and charged him with operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol (OUI) at Massey’s Landing. Millard was taken to the Millsboro police station for a breathalyzer test and released pending a later court date at Justice of the Peace Court 14 in Georgetown.

    • On May 23, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers arrested David W. Jones, 24, of Harrington, and charged him with OUI on Rehoboth Bay near Love Creek. Jones was taken to the Millsboro police station for a breathalyzer test and released pending a later court date at Justice of the Peace Court 14 in Georgetown.

    • On May 23 and 24, and concurrent with National Safe Boating Week (May 16-24), Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers conducted concentrated boating safety patrols on Delaware’s waterways to ensure public safety over the holiday weekend. The officers spent 227.5 hours under way on patrol vessels, conducted 570 vessel boardings, contacted 2,036 members of the public and responded to 74 complaints, including two search-and-rescues. Statewide, 82 citations were issued, including two OUI arrests.

    • On May 18, following an investigation near Felton, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers arrested Joshua Nuewiller, 38, of Greensboro, Md., and charged him with one count of guiding a turkey hunt in Delaware without a valid Delaware guide license. Nuewiller pled guilty in Justice of the Peace Court 7 in Dover and was fined $107, including court costs.

    In all, the parks, hunting and fishing citations issued for the week of May 18-24 included: operating a motor vehicle off an established roadway on a state wildlife area; six citations for trespassing after hours on a state wildlife area; no valid guide license for hunting; 29 citations for fishing without a license; possession of undersized white perch; three citations for trespassing to fish; nine citations for possession of undersized blue crab; possession of sponge crab; two citations for improperly marked recreational crab pots.

    Boating and boating safety citations issued included: nine citations for operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets; six citations for no life jacket on a child age 12 or younger as required by law; six citations for operating a motor vessel with an expired registration/operating an unregistered vessel; three citations for failure to observe slow/no wake zone ; no valid boat ramp certificate; two citations for operating a motor vessel under the influence of alcohol; three citations for negligent operation of a vessel; five citations for no boating safety certificate; use of non-complying vessel; no fire extinguisher on board/required safety equipment; and no sound-producing device on board/required safety equipment.

    Public safety citations included: two citations for failure to carry helmet on motorcycle; and no motorcycle endorsement.

    Additionally, on May 23, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers displayed the Operation Game Theft trailer and spoke to the public about hunting, fishing and boating safety at the Millsboro VFW Boating & Fishing Expo, which included a fundraiser for an offshore fishing trip for “wounded warriors.”

    Tautog season closed through July 16, possession prohibited

    Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police also this week reminded anglers that from May 12 through July 16 and again from Sept. 1 through Sept. 28, landing and possession of tautog in Delaware is prohibited, regardless of where the fish was caught— Delaware waters, another state’s waters or federal waters.

    Tautog typically spawn in offshore waters in late spring to early summer. Due to their slow reproduction and growth, the species is vulnerable to overfishing, and Delaware’s regulations are based on management guidelines issued by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to protect stocks from overfishing. Regulations include:

    • A tautog size minimum of 15 inches for all seasons;

    • A possession limit of five fish from Jan. 1 through March 31, July 17 through Aug. 31 and Sept. 29 through Dec. 31; and

    • A possession limit of three fish from April 1 through May 11.

    Most recreational anglers who fish, crab or clam in tidal or non-tidal waters statewide must have a valid Delaware fishing license. Anglers younger than 16 and residents 65 or older are not required to purchase fishing licenses in Delaware.

    Both resident and non-resident anglers 16 and older are required to obtain a Delaware Fisherman Information Network (F.I.N.) number. The free number is included as part of a Delaware fishing license purchase. License-exempt anglers, including Delaware residents 65 and older, may visit www.delaware-fin.com or call 1-800-432-9228 toll-free to obtain their free F.I.N. number.

    Delaware fishing licenses are sold online, at the licensing office in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, and by license agents statewide. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call (302) 739-9918.


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    On Thursday, June 25, the Clear Space Theatre Company in Rehoboth will kick off its rotating summer productions of “Grease,” “Rent” and “Seussical,” which will feature 13 visiting actors from all across the East Coast.

    Usually, the company brings in a small handful of visiting actors as needed for specific roles, but this year, newly-appointed Artistic Director David Button said, he knew that he needed to pursue more than usual.

    “The nature of our summer shows demanded more diversity than our current stock of actors had to offer,” Button said. “For example, both ‘Rent’ and ‘Grease’ need a host of young actors with specific vocal types that we didn’t necessarily have available to us locally.”

    After holding the theater’s annual January auditions for locals, Button traveled to New York City to see how he could supplement the talent he already had.

    In February, he attended Straw Hat Auditions, a three-day event in New York City that hosts adult, non-equity performers as they audition for the summer productions of more than 30 theaters across the U.S. In those three days, Button listened to more than 700 auditions and came home excited about the future of Clear Space, he said.

    “One of Clear Space’s mottos is ‘Artistic Endeavors of Integrity and Risk,’” Button explained. “From its inception, the company has always aspired to be one that pulls together both the artistic and professional communities here and beyond to create art and tell stories. For the last two or three seasons, we have relied almost solely on local talent, but this season seemed like the perfect opportunity to embrace that motto and branch out even more than before.”

    This summer’s visiting actors will include Darius Delk from Florida, Meghan Deeley from New Jersey, Annelise Pajewski from Pennsylvania, Devon Frieder from Massachusetts, Andrew Russell and Jonny Cortes from Connecticut, Michael McCann from Vermont, and Kendyl Ito, Mikaela Holmes, Mili Diaz, Monique Scott, Alec Nevin and Andrew Cuccaro from New York.

    Each visiting performer will appear in all three summer productions, taking on a mix of ensemble parts, supporting roles and/or lead characters, such as Danny and Sandy in “Grease,” the leading males in “Rent,” and Jojo and Cat in the Hat in “Seussical.” Several of them will also assist with choreography and Clear Space’s children camps throughout the summer.

    The visiting artists will join forces with several local and veteran Clear Space performers, including Susann Studz, Maddie Barton, Julia Bloom, Evan Harnett, Hannah Weilminster, Meghan Hayward, Rose Slavin, Dan Carney, Matt Lewis, Ashley O’Donnell, Erin Williams, Mary O’Neill and Peyton Lynch.

    Clear Space’s Summer Rep season kicks off at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 25, with an opening night gala performance of “Grease.” “Rent” will then open on Monday, June 29, followed by “Seussical” on Wednesday, July 1. The three shows will then run in rotation throughout the summer until Saturday, Sept. 5. All shows start at 7:30 p.m.

    A full show schedule and tickets can be obtained at www.ClearSpaceTheatre.org or by calling (302) 227-2270. The theater is located at 20 Baltimore Avenue in Rehoboth Beach.


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    License-free fishing days planned June 6-7

    As part of its activities for National Fishing & Boating Week, June 6-14, the Delaware Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police will hold its 29th Annual Youth Fishing Tournament from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, June 6, at Ingrams Pond in Millsboro, Wyoming Pond in Wyoming and at the dog training area of Lums Pond State Park in Bear.

    The tournament is open to youths ages 4 through 15. An adult must accompany youths younger than 12, and contestants must bring their own fishing equipment. Prizes will be awarded at 1:30 p.m. in three age groups: 4 through 7, 8 through 11, and 12 through 15. The tournament is free and open to the public. Participants are being asked to arrive before 10 a.m. to register for the tournament.

    The tournament was established to introduce youth to the sport of fishing and to teach the catch-and-release approach to conservation.

    “Since the tournament’s first year, in ’86, the event has grown tremendously and has exposed more than 200 youths each year to sport fishing,” said Cpl. John McDerby of the Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, which sponsors the tournament.

    In addition to the fishing tournament celebrating National Fishing & Boating Week, the Division of Fish & Wildlife has designated June 6 and 7 as free fishing days, when anyone may fish in Delaware waters without a fishing license.

    Anglers are being reminded that even though they don’t need a license to fish on those two days, those who are 16 or older are still required to obtain a free Fisherman Identification Network (FIN) number, available online at www.delaware-fin.com or by calling 1-800-432-9228. Anglers also are required to comply with Delaware’s fishing regulations, including size and daily catch limits.

    For more information on the Youth Fishing Tournament, call (302) 739-9913. Registration forms are available online at http://www.dnrec.delaware.gov/fw/Fisheries/Documents/Youth-Fishing-Tourn....

    The Youth Fishing Tournament is part of Delaware’s Children in Nature Initiative, a statewide effort to improve environmental literacy in Delaware, create opportunities for children to participate in enriching outdoor experiences, combat childhood obesity and promote healthy lifestyles.

    Delaware’s multi-agency initiative, which partners state and federal agencies with community organizations, is part of the national No Child Left Inside program.


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    Is your shoulder stiff and painful? Is it one of those discomforts that has become increasingly worse?

    You may be suffering from a very painful problem that can be difficult to pinpoint. It’s called frozen shoulder, and it can make something as seemingly simple as picking up a newspaper an excruciating and difficult task.

    You don’t want to wait until this one goes away by itself. It might in a few years, and who wants to suffer that long. This is a good time to learn what you should know about frozen shoulder, because that knowledge could make a world of difference for you or someone you know.

    You know that your shoulder is a complex part of your anatomy that is key to your mobility. Each shoulder is a combination of ligaments, tendons and bones. The shoulder joint includes a sort of casing of connective tissue that is a part of the inner workings of the shoulder that is critical to the multi-functionality that defines your shoulder movements.

    Sometimes, this casing of connective tissue starts to thicken, and when it does, it tightens around the shoulder joint. The result is your movements become increasingly restricted, and you experience pain and stiffness every time you make a movement that involves your shoulders.

    Frozen shoulder, or adhesive capsulitis, develops rather slowly and worsens as time goes on. In fact, it can last from a year to three years, and then it will probably go away, but sometimes it comes back. In the meantime, it really messes with your most basic movements, and it does quite a number on your quality of life.

    As it slowly evolves, it goes through three distinct stages, and each stage can hang on for several months. Stage one is called the freezing stage, which is when you find that any movement of your shoulder is painful and you’ll definitely notice a reduction in your range of motion.

    The second stage is called the frozen stage, and this one can fool you. During the frozen stage, which is stage two, you may think it’s not so bad because the pain often eases a bit. But, what you will also experience is more stiffness and more difficulty using your shoulder.

    The final stage, called the thawing stage, is when you will start to see an improvement in your range of motion. It can take as long as three years to reach this point and start to feel some relief.

    Beginning with the first stage, many people report that the pain becomes more intense at night, and this can mean you will have difficulty sleeping. Sleep disruption, as you know from my recent article, can be a direct cause of a number of other serious health issues, as well as being destructive to day-to-day quality of life.

    Doctors can’t give you a one-size-fits-all explanation of what can put you at risk for this painful, debilitating problem. The reason is doctors don’t really know why some people are stricken with frozen shoulder. In fact, doctors report that there are some people who’ve been afflicted for whom they’ve never been able to identify the cause.

    However, there are some causes that they can generally identity. People older than 40 are at risk, and women are at the greatest risk. Doctors have found that women comprise 70 percent of the cases of frozen shoulder.

    Other health problems can also cause frozen shoulder. If you’ve gone through a period where a broken arm, a stroke, a rotator cuff injury, a recovery period from surgery or any experience has led to a long period of total immobility or limited mobility, you have a much greater risk of experiencing frozen shoulder.

    In addition, some diseases can increase your risk. If you have diabetes, cardiovascular disease, an overactive or underactive thyroid, Parkinson’s disease or tuberculosis, the odds are far greater for developing frozen shoulder.

    If you suspect that you have frozen shoulder or you’re experiencing symptoms that could be a sign of frozen shoulder, it is absolutely critical that you call your doctor and make an appointment to be evaluated.

    Take a few minutes before you go to the doctor to organize your information and write down the details so you won’t leave out a potentially important piece of information. You’re going to want to tell your doctor about your symptoms and give him or her all of the information on health problems you have experienced.

    You also want to provide a list of all your medications, including any supplements, such as vitamins. Your doctor is going to be particularly interested to learn about any previous or current injuries to your shoulder, whether you’ve had any experiences that have limited the use and movement of your shoulder, whether you’ve got a problem with diabetes or other diseases, and you can be sure your medical professional wants to hear all the details about when your symptoms began, and if there is anything that you have noticed about a particular movement or activity that makes your symptoms get worse.

    Expect that your doctor is going to conduct a thorough examination that will most likely include testing to see what your range of motion is in the problematic shoulder. Your health professional may also order X-rays and an MRI to find out if you have signs of other problems, such as a damaged rotator cuff or osteoarthritis. Don’t be surprised if you get a referral to see an orthopedic specialist.

    Once diagnosed, there are a number of treatments that can be prescribed to help you feel better without waiting for two or three years to get there. What you can expect is that your doctor will give you a treatment plan based on your specific condition and needs.

    It is very likely that you will be referred to a physical therapist who will work with your doctor to create a plan to address your range of motion limitations. You may also be given injections and anti-inflammatory medications. Surgery is usually reserved for people who have not improved after all the non-surgical options have proven ineffective. It should make you feel optimistic to know that more than 90 percent of people who are treated get better without surgery.

    There is one important factor that you should keep in mind once you’ve recovered from a frozen shoulder: It is vital that you take the right steps to keep your shoulder joint flexible and preserve your mobility.

    Talk to your physical therapist about what exercises can do the job for you. With their experience and specialized training, designing an exercise plan that takes into account your needs and lifestyle will mean you can get on with your life and enjoy the people and activities that are important to you.

    You’ve read my columns enough to know I understand that your quality of life is what it’s all about. Be proactive and make each day a good one.

    Bob Cairo is a licensed physical therapist at Tidewater Physical Therapy. He can be reached by calling (302) 537-7260.


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  • 06/04/15--12:55: They’re an American Band
  • Coastal Point • R. Chris Clark: American Band members, from left: Terry Wilson on guitar, drummer Rick Webster, lead singer Eric Bomhardt and bassist Kevin Ward have been bringing their mix of modern country and classic rock covers to local venues.Coastal Point • R. Chris Clark: American Band members, from left: Terry Wilson on guitar, drummer Rick Webster, lead singer Eric Bomhardt and bassist Kevin Ward have been bringing their mix of modern country and classic rock covers to local venues.The name says it all.

    Darius Rucker? They’ve got ya feelin’ “alright.” Lynrd Skynyrd? They’ll give ya three steps, mister. Johnny Cash? Yeah, they can walk the line.

    Since their inception just under a year ago, American Band has been bringing their own style of country, classic rock and just about anything else that spells homegrown music in the good ol’ U.S. of A. to local venues including the Fat Tuna and High Stakes, and beach bars from Coconuts to M.R. Ducks.

    Usually opening up with some modern country to set the tone, eventually they’ll juice it up when lead singer Eric Bomhardt starts belting out Southern and classic rock anthems, and face-melting guitar riffs bleed into jaw-dropping drum solos that bring the crowd to its feet.

    “Our main thing is American music,” Bomhardt explained. “We started out mainly all country. Then we said, ‘Let’s be us,’ so we threw some Southern rock in there and some classic rock.”

    “We do a lot of new country, but new country is basically rock,” added bassist Kevin Ward.

    The “new country” covers usually include hit singles by stars such as Dirks Bentley and Darius Rucker but, depending on the crowd, the setlist carries on into classic rock favorites from artists including the Eagles, Tom Petty and Grand Funk Railroad — even venturing into ’90s favorites, including Sublime’s “What I Got.”

    “We play stuff that makes people feel good, have a good time,” said drummer Rick Webster, who highlights the night with a hypnotizing drum solo during “One Way Out” by the Allman Brothers. “If somebody asks for something, we’re gonna play it — we’re here for them.”

    But even though the band has been together for less than a year, they’re no strangers.

    “We’ve all been doing it a long time. All of us have played together in different bands,” said lead guitarist Terry Wilson. “Everybody in the band is very talented. It’s a really good working unit.”

    “Terry was the guitar player in the first band I ever played in,” Ward recalled.

    That kind of history runs just as deep for the rest of the group.

    Not only did Ward play with Wilson in his first band, but also with Bomhardt when he got his start, when Order Disorder opened for Eddie Money in the early ’90’s. Interestingly enough, a group called Mighty Big Richard also took the stage before Money that night, featuring Webster on the drums.

    “We went on; then Mighty Big Richard went on; and then Eddie Money went on,” Bomhardt recalled of the performance at the old Scandals night club in Ocean City, Md. “That was my first gig ever — that was pretty awesome.”

    Eventually, Bomhardt and Webster would go on to make a name for themselves playing in a group called Grassdaddy for nearly 20 years, before Webster joined up with Ward in to play in Scrapple for the last 10, but they’ve all had their own experiences with different types of music as individuals, as well.

    “I’ve played blues. I’ve played rock. I’ve played metal. I’ve played jazz,” said Webster, who has also played in the Salisbury Symphony.

    “I’ve been playing forever,” added Wilson. “There’s been very few weeks out of my life that I haven’t been in a band.”

    On Saturday, July 18, they’ll storm Ocean City at Coconuts Beach Bar & Grill from 5 to 9 p.m., but they’ll also be making some more appearances locally, at the Fat Tuna and High Stakes, before taking the stage at Hooper’s Crab House in West Ocean City for Bike Week this fall.

    And for a band that’s made music their lives, it’s not surprising to see that don’t care where they’re playing — they just want to play.

    “It doesn’t matter where we play,” said Wilson. “If they don’t provide chicken wire, we’ve got some in the truck.”

    For booking information, contact Eric Bomhardt at bomhardt1@verizon.net.


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