A look at the highs and lows along Bay Weekly’s 19 years
• New Bay Times born April 22 to Sandra Olivetti Martin, Bill Lambrecht and Alex Knoll and delivered every two weeks.
• Bill Burton, just retired from the Evening Sun, hires on as outdoors columnist. New Bay Times stock soars.
• Inaugural issue of Bay Weekly’s summer guide, 101 Ways to Have Fun.
• No longer black and white and read all over; our first spot color (on front and back covers) is green.
• Rampant diseases MSX and Dermo have eaten up 70 percent of Maryland’s oysters — and 90 percent of Virginia’s. The little buggers have a taste for salt.
• Maryland convenes the Oyster Round Table and publishes an Action Plan for Oyster Recovery.
• In June, the news is weekly — New Bay Times~Weekly, that is.
• Betsy Kehne signs on. First assignment: intern of all trades. Eighteen years later she keeps things flowing as production manager.
• Deale’s two-time Guinness Book of World Records champion Tommy ‘Muskrat’ Greene passes on; Bill Lambrecht’s story Death of a Legend takes first prize in Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Press Association competition.
• Only about 7,000 acres of Maryland’s historic crop, tobacco is planted in the year Maryland bans smoking in all workplaces but bars, a national first enacted by the Maryland department of Licensing and Regulation.
• Worst Maryland oyster harvest ever: 80,000 bushels.
• Oyster Recovery Partnership begins its still-continuing job, planting three billion oysters and counting.
• Chesapeake Beach Waterpark opens, restoring the best pool on the Bay to the old summer resort town.
• Chessie the Manatee pays our northerly waters a visit and makes big news: he’s airlifted back to Florida when winter’s chill makes manatee watchers fear for his life.
• Cal Ripken breaks Lou Gehrig’s Ironman record: Playing 2131 consecutive games.
• Gene Cronin, one of the first scientists to sound the alarm on the Bay, tells New Bay Times~Weekly “Around 1970, the Bay became less productive. Water quality went down. We were putting in too much fertilizer. We had overfished some species. That’s when I and many other began to say, Hey, we’re getting in serious trouble.”
• First year of Season’s Bounty, Bay Weekly’s annual guide to the holidays.
• 1st annual Bill Burton-Bay Weekly rockfish Tournament, always on a Sunday in football season as Burton’s protest against public funding for Ravens’ stadium instead of the Bay.
• Wedding bells start ringing, for ad salesman Jim and Danielle Gibbons.
• And ring again for Alex and Lisa Knoll.
• Pfiesteria rampant: The microorganism attacks not only fish but also people handling them.
• Southern Anne Arundel County narrowly escapes being targeted as a Primary Growth Area for future land use.
• Five years old? It’s time to party: Birthday Bivalve Bash at Surfside 7 on the South River raises $6,700 for the Oyster Recovery Partnership.
• Bay Weekly goes online thanks to intern Brianne Warner, a Northern (Calvert) High School student and University of Maryland journalism star.
• Wedding bells ring again: production manager Betsy Kehne marries Mark Behuncik.
• Construction begins to restore Poplar Island as an 1,140-acre wildlife sanctuary with wetlands and bird nesting habitats; eventual cost of the Army Corps of Engineers project, about $1 billion; completion date around 2027.
• Anne Arundel County begins arduous, multi-year process of citizen planning to complete its General Development Plan by way of Small Area Plans.
• Annapolis builds Westgate Circle on West Street.
• Six years old and another party at Surfside 7 on the South River, which buys 8,000 trees for American Forests.
• The Alex Haley-Kunta Kinta statuary quartet arrives at Annapolis City Dock.
• Tobacco farmers contemplate taking their share of Maryland’s $4.2 billion national tobacco settlement in buy-outs.
• Scientists announce consensus on an Oyster Restoration Strategy based on sanctuaries.
• The world survives Y2K: Twentieth century gives way to the 21st without crashing our electronic culture.
• We throw another birthday bash to commemorate our seventh birthday, this time to raise funds and awareness for the South River Federation.
• New Bay Times~Weekly shortens to Bay Weekly.
• We move to a new office, a one-time Bay cottage on Rockhold Creek in Deale.
• Bay Weekly’s first baby: John Alexander ‘Jack’ Knoll Jr. arrives August 25.
• Bay Weekly’s second baby, Elsa Leigh Knoll, arrives October 4.
• Bay Weekly’s large and loveable receptionist Max the yellow Lab dies at 13 on August 11.
• Bay Weekly’s first open house: a pig roast to celebrate co-founder Bill Lambrecht’s first book, Dinner at the New Gene Café. (Happy Harbor across the street fields calls asking where that new café is opening.)
• Saga of alien invaders: first Chesapeake sighting of a Northern snakehead fish, in a Crofton pond.
• Organic food standards finally set by U.S. Department of Agriculture.
• In Chesapeake Bay Blues, political scientist Howard Ernst — a professor at the U.S. Naval Academy — blows the whistle on the failures of two decades of Bay restoration talk.
• Wedding bells ring again: staff writer and calendar editor Louis and Petra Llovio
• The Flush Tax, the bright idea of new Republican governor Bob Ehrlich, creates a dedicated fund for Bay Watershed Restoration, dividing what we pay to flush for water treatment plant restoration, septic system improvement and aid to farmers to control pollution.
• Margaret Tearman begins writing her way into Bay Weekly’s pages.
• Bay Weekly gets a new office dog: Moe arrives to grow into Max’s big pawprints.
• Celebrating Bill Lambrecht’s second book, Big Muddy Blues, Bay Weekly throws a thought-provoking party on the state of our waters at Historic London Town and Gardens.
• First Annapolis office opens, at 1202 West Street, joining our Deale office.
• New in our pages: Sporting Life columnist Dennis Doyle and Bay Gardener Francis Gouin.
• Wedding bells ring again: staff writer Carrie Steele marries Tyras Madren.
• Chesapeake Bay’s most glamorous restaurateur, Vera Freeman exits the stage, selling Vera’s White Sands in Lusby. Editor Sandra Olivetti Martin’s story, Vera’s Last Act, wins first prize in Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Press Association competition.
• The National Academy of Sciences says think again before importing alien Ariakensis oysters to the Chesapeake.
• Deale and West Street offices consolidate at 1629 Forest Drive, Annapolis.
• Diana Beechener signs on as calendar editor; Dick Wilson hands off theater reviewing to Jane Elkin and Davina Grace Hill.
• Historic Highland Beach, Anne Arundel County’s smallest incorporated town, builds its town hall to LEED Platinum standards.
• Maryland’s state reptile, the diamond-backed terrapin, protected from harvest.
• Alien bug invasion: the Asian Emerald Ash Borer has an apparently uncontainable appetite.
• Second office dog Nipper the Jack Russell Terrorist joins the Bay Weekly pack.
• Wedding bells ring again: classifieds manager and web-mistress Erin Huebschman marries Matt Sakalas.
• After 16 years, Bill Burton retires six weeks before his death on August 10.
• After 10th annual Chesapeake Bay Foundation State of the Bay Report continues to show “no significant progress in” cleaning up the Bay; the Foundation sues to force federal Environmental Protection Agency “to take action to reduce pollution from all sources sufficiently to have the Chesapeake Bay removed from the nation’s impaired waters list.”
• President Barack Obama signs the Chesapeake Bay Protection and Restoration Executive Order requiring the federal government to lead a renewed effort for restoration and protection.
• More wedding bells: Former intern and writer Mark Burns marries Becca Foster.
• Diana Beechener takes over as The Moviegoer.
• Deadline slips by with Bay-clean-up benchmarks unmet. But hope rises …
• Maryland — and the other Bay states — give the EPA their pollution diet plans required by the federal Chesapeake Bay Protection and Restoration Order.
• Maryland’s Oyster Recovery Plan proposes resuscitating the Bay by restoring native oysters through sanctuaries and shifting from wild harvesting to aquaculture.
• Wedding bells ring yet again: Calendar editor and staff writer Diana Beechener weds Jack Alkire.
• Another Burton for Bay Weekly, Heather Burton Boughey, Bill Burton’s youngest daughter, writes her first story for Bay Weekly.
• Third office dog Chester joins the Bay Weekly Pack.
• National Science Foundation concludes the hard work on cleaning up Bay pollution is still to come, requiring sacrifice and “profound changes.”
• Alien bug invasion continues: this time it’s the brown marmorated stinkbug.
• 19 years and counting!
• Beginning in June, find us at our new Annapolis office at 1160 Spa Road, catty-corner from our current digs.