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Stories that need to be told

Agricultural program grows at Phoenix Academy

They’re out to trap cast-off ­monofilament line

Born in the shadow of the Civil War, this African American community has grown and thrived

How did Parole get that odd name?     Today’s sprawling malls at Festival Plaza and the Annapolis Towne Center at Parole are built where once sprawled a Civil War prisoner of war camp, called Camp Parole because the prisoners had given their promise, their parole, not to escape.     Civilians came and started businesses to serve the military and the prisoners. Many were African Americans, building homes, churches, schools and a community of their own. Their...

Should dispelling stereotypes trump history?

You know that conversation on race we’re all supposed to be having? We’ve jumped into it in the midst of Black History Month from the unlikely springboard of a 1940 romantic comedy set in the whites-only high society of Main Line Philadelphia.     This month, 2nd Star Productions tried The Philadelphia Story out on 2016 audiences.     Cast as establishment tycoon George Kittredge, the groom-to-be, in a three-way competition for the love of the female...

We look for the best actors to fill the roles in our shows

We are writing regarding the review of our production of The Philadelphia Story that was recently published in Bay Weekly and posted on the web. 2nd Star respects that everyone is entitled to their opinions, we very much appreciate all of the excellent reviews we have received from Bay Weekly staff in the past, and we certainly don’t expect every review of community theatre to be glowing.     However, we are quite concerned regarding the emphasis in the...

Actors shouldn’t be bound by stereotypes

Mediocre reviews happen. It is the nature of ­theater. Some works are hits; some are misses. Some misses even get reviewed as hits and, certainly, vice versa. In considering the February 11 review of 2nd Star Production’s A Philadelphia Story, it is safe to say the Jane C. Elkin offered a meh assessment. Again, it happens.     But for now, let’s put aside her obvious love of the 1940 film. It’s one of my favorites, too. We can even put aside her seeming...

Kids here, lambs, calves and piglets on the way

The stork has been busy at Kinder Farm Park in Millersville. Since the beginning of February, there have been multiple births from the celebrity Eco-Goat squad — with more on the way. All are half fainting and half Boer goats.     Penny, a black and white goat, gave birth to a girl, now named Mable. Mable is an energetic kid who loves to hop around.     Twin kids Nanny and Boh, a boy and a girl, were born to Tequila, a brown, white and black goat. The twins...

It’s time to start onions and peppers

Onion and pepper seeds are slow to germinate and slow in their early stage of seedling growth. So if you’re growing them from seed, you want an early start. Now’s the time.     Sow the seeds in a sterile potting mix rather than garden soil to avoid sprouting weeds and contaminating your seedlings with soil-borne diseases. Fill the pots a half-inch from the top. Tap the pot on a bench several times to eliminate air pockets. Firm the potting mix by pressing three...

Be ready for fish with the year’s most appealing lures

High winds, dark days and 20-degree temperatures have limited anglers’ choices this ugly February. Enforced home time is just what you need to prepare for next season.     Among good news last season was the appearance of vast schools of schoolie rockfish. Many proved under the 20-inch minimum size, meaning many will have grown fat and legal by the time fishing blossoms again.     Be ready for these coming-of-age fish with the most appealing lures. You won...

Look for them together from dusk Tuesday to dawn Wednesday

Sunset Thursday and Friday finds the waxing moon high overhead in the company of Gemini’s Castor and Pollux above, Canis Minor’s Procyon below and Orion’s Betelgeuse off to the west. Come Saturday the moon is in the constellation Cancer, too faint to compete against lunar glare.     Come Sunday, the moon has a new companion, the bright star Regulus trailing a dozen degrees behind. The brightest star in Leo, Regulus is also part of the asterism called the Sickle...

A flawed but funny romantic comedy

Four New York women explore the complexities of love.     Alice (Dakota Johnson: 50 Shades of Grey) moves to the city to find herself. But single life in the big city is rough, and she can’t get her boyfriend back. Alone and hoping for a grand romance, she restarts her search for Mr. Right.     Alice’s sister Met (Leslie Mann: Vacation) is at the other extreme. This independent Ob/Gyn looks for happiness in work rather than love. When she decides to...

A 4,000-mile cycling trek for cancer awareness led this young couple to the altar

Couples can make less-than-ideal traveling companions. It’s a rare relationship that blossoms under the strain of a long-distance trip. Now imagine making that trip on bicycles, riding from Maryland to San Diego. A recipe for disaster? Hardly. It was a recipe for love.     Our couple, James Baden and Mackenzie Williams, met, fell in love and courted over the 4,000 miles of a bicycle trek that stretched over 70 days. The recently married pair agreed to share their story...