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Anne Arundel County     Arundel Olympic Swim Center - Swim lessons for adults and kids. Children must be a least three years old and potty-trained: 410-222-7933.     Truxton Park Swimming Pool - A variety of swimming programs for adults and children: 410-263-2958.     North Arundel Aquatic Center - Swim lessons for adults and kids. Children must be a least three years old and potty-trained: 410-222-0900.

Volunteer birders stalked their prey for five years to create the new Atlas of Breeding Birds in Maryland

New osprey heads are popping over edges of nests all over Chesapeake Country. Puffs of tiny brown Carolina wren fledglings erupt from our porches and shrubs, the second brood since April. Soon, beneath our feeders, cardinal babies, whose sprouts of downy feathers remind us of our own bad-hair days, will beg for food from their parents.

But your cash will put more flash in July 4th Annapolis

Fireworks almost didn’t explode over Annapolis last year.         With budget constraints and a lack of donations, the show looked doomed.     With the clock close to expiring, the city and local business came through with the cash to fund the show.

The cause behind the Naptown barBAYq

No one really knows why kids get cancer. But they do, some 14,000 of them a year.     Go to Parole Rotary’s Naptown barBAYq May 13 and 14, and you’ll be helping “give a chance of living a nice long life” to the 200 kids cancer sends each year to The Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in Baltimore.     Like Tracie Lewis.

Recent storm spares freshwater marsh

Just over a month ago, a new sand barrier was topped off with 60,000 plants of native grass to protect the fragile Cove Point freshwater marsh in Calvert County from the open Bay. Mother Nature had breached the barrier in 2004 and 2006, and once again this month, she has proved that she is in charge.

Electricity will cross over rivers and tunnel beneath the Bay — if given a foothold.

Whether it’s wind turbines in Annapolis, Western Maryland or Ocean City, or power poles and pathways in Calvert, the debate keeps coming closer. Do you want affordable, reliable and accessible power? Or do you want to protect the environment, starting with your own backyard?     In the court of public opinion, Calvert County won against local electrical provider Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative, SMECO, bringing down dozens of behemoth power poles.

Use this loophole to help a kid meet a dinosaur

When tax day cometh, Deborah Wood hopes you’ll choose to write a check for your Maryland taxes to her Chesapeake Children’s Museum rather than to Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot.     True, Maryland needs your money; even now, as the General Assembly rushes to finish its work, thousands of good causes are competing for your every dime and dollar. Where your money goes, you’ll never know.

After 100 years in New York, a storied mahogany bar finds a new home in Mayo

Prost! will make room for salute when you next click glasses at the bar at the new Old Stein. That’s because owner Mike Selinger has imported the bar of a famous Manhattan Italian eatery to keep the old in the Old Stein, which he hopes to reopen at its Mayo location in August after December 31’s fire.

Sports and conservation groups challenge harvest traditions

Illegal commercial gill netting (and consequently, some arrests) continues despite all the attention net-fishing has been drawing on the water and in the news. Now the Coastal Conservation Association (ccamd.com) has asked Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary John Griffin to re-evaluate both commercial gill net operations and pound net fisheries.

Anne Arundel County Public Library’s
new administrator, Skip Auld,
is learning to pull dollars
out of thin air

Skip Auld will have to be a magician to pull all he wants out of Anne Arundel County Public Library’s incredible shrinking budget.     Anne Arundel was a big step up for Auld, who came here in early November from running the Durham County public library system, about half the size of Anne Arundel County, in North Carolina.     Auld’s big promotion came with a bigger problem.