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History & Lore

An international taste of the holidays

      In the great American melting pot, many families have a specialty that makes the holidays taste like home. Many of these recipes were passed down by family members who immigrated to the U.S.        Bay Weekly reached out to our friends and neighbors to see what food and drink from around the world are featured on their tables. We’re happy to share their treasured recipes with you.  
      At first Christmas was kind of a mystery to me.       All the preparation and presents and decoration were fun. Grandmother would play the piano and we would sing Silent Night and Bell Bottomed Trousers.      Then there was the latest technology: eight-millimeter family home movies. We were all the players, producing reality TV before there was such a thing.

Christmas crafting almost ruined my childhood

     From ages five through nine, I viewed the Christmas season with a mixture of delight and hesitation. There would be presents and cookies — and lots of work. As the child of a stay-at-home mom in a rural area in the 1990s, I became a worker in my mother and friend’s holiday craft sweatshop from the beginning of August well into November. 

Each of our Christmas ­evergreens tells a story

      Early Americans celebrated a long Yuletide from December 15 to Epiphany on January 6. Europeans started earlier on December 6, Saint Nicholas Day. In every tradition, evergreens have been part of the celebration.      Why do we decorate our homes with boughs of pine and holly?

Clear your calendar for these holiday traditions

What: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

Tom Crockett’s trains at Tan’s Cycles

     “He created a destination with his trains,” Marygrace Baergen says as she gestures across the kitchen table to her brother Tom Crockett.       A pile of thank-you notes and old pictures are scattered on the table. Cardboard boxes wait to be unpacked in Crockett’s new house in Rose Haven, where he moved from the apartment at his former business, Tan’s Cycles in North Beach.

10 Reasons to Remember Him

     1. Dick Lahn, who died November 22 at the age of 76, was really smart. Way back in 1967, at a League of Conservation Voters’ lecture, he saw the light: “I was working as a mathematician for NASA, and suddenly I knew that protecting our environment was what I really wanted to do.”      2. When Dick Lahn put his mind to a problem he always found the solution. He always made it fun and shared the credit with others.

Galway Bay makes a splash big enough to celebrate 20 years

      It takes an Irish boat and crew to ferry beer across the Chesapeake. They won’t be dying the Chesapeake green — as the Irish of Chicago dyed the Chicago River for St. Patrick’s Day — but they’ll be transforming the Bay into an Irish Channel to bring Galway Bay its special 20th anniversary brew. 

What should we do to push back the tide?

      Dozens of islands in Chesapeake Bay were home to human populations, farms, forests, even a few stores and hotels, in the 18th and 19th centuries. Starting in the early 1900s, islanders migrated to the mainland. Now all but two of these offshore islands have disappeared or no longer sustain the communities that once thrived in isolation.

More damn dam debris

      Unless you’re a driftwood enthusiast, the news from Conowingo Dam is troubling. Again.       At the end of the rainiest November ever — in what could be the rainiest year in recorded history — dam operators announced last week that all the flood crest gates would be opened “until further notice.”