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Graduates learn Bay stewardship

     Is this fall your semester to go back to school to train as a Master Watershed Steward?      The Anne Arundel County Watershed Stewards Academy is looking for a few good men and women to join its 10th certification class. Training, beginning in October, includes class time and field sessions in managing stormwater and restoring waterways.      Recent graduate April Florey did her capstone project on a neighbor’s flooding yard. Trevor Dehar...

What makes milk chocolate?

     The NPR report that “seven percent of adults still think that chocolate milk comes from chocolate cows,” got me thinking.       Breed and coloration can factor into milk production, reports Anne Arundel 4H-er Patricia Williams, who notes that Holsteins are the best milking cow. A single Holstein produces some 2,674 gallons of milk each year.      But neither the cow’s color nor her breed affects the color of the milk....

Anne Arundel County Public Schools opens solar farm

     Schools in Anne Arundel County welcomed back students this week with a lesson in renewable energy.      Anne Arundel County Public Schools, the fifth largest district in Maryland with approximately 82,000 students, has gone solar.       A 1.4-megawatt ground-mount array, developed and constructed by Standard Solar, now sits on six acres of school system-owned land at the Fort Smallwood complex in Pasadena.      “We have...

Those school supplies last a lifetime

     Once the ritual of going back to school is no longer yours, it falls into the realm of nostalgia.      Most bad memories fade, courtesy of pain’s blessed inability to be recalled in its actual intensity. The third-grade bully, the looming memory test on the mathematics tables and the hours of confinement are more likely to stay in the past as facts than to haunt the present.      The good memories, however, awaken with each new school year...

Don’t give up on that missed strike

      I sent the Rat-L-Trap sailing out over the water in the longest cast I could manage. Pausing for a slow four-count to allow the lure to sink near the bottom, five feet down, I began the retrieve with long upward sweeps of my rod, followed by brief pauses to allow the lure to descend back toward the bottom.       The braided 20-pound-test line had no elasticity, which allowed me to feel not only the lure’s vibration but also any collisions with rocks or...
A fascinating drama about one man caught between his tradition and his family
     Brooklyn’s Hasidic community is a world of its own. The orthodox laws of Judaism are followed to the letter in this Yiddish-speaking enclave. Menashe (Menashe Lustig in his feature debut) lives by the rules until the rules refuse him his son.        As a ­widower, he is an unfit parent. His strict brother-in-law takes in his son. Meanwhile Menashe tries to prove himself a capable single father, but in truth he may not be.     ...
     Could it be 40 years ago?      Yes, it’s been four long decades since John Travolta’s sinuous moves in Saturday Night Fever made a generation believe we could dance our cares away.       You can revisit those heady nights of disco dancing this Saturday, September 9, when the tribute band the New York Bee Gees reprises the band that set the sound tone for the 1977 movie.      Jefferson Patterson Park’s pavilion...

A look at who we are through what we do in snapshots of Chesapeake Country ­working people aged 17 to 89.

Summer officially ends with Labor Day, aptly the day America sets aside to celebrate the people who made and make the nation.       The holiday began as part of working people’s campaign to claim the benefits of their labor. Much has changed since the determined, often life-and-death labor struggles of the late 19th century. Industries have flourished and fallen. We do different jobs, contributing to a far different give-and-take than New York City’s 1892 Labor Day...

In more ways than one, a lifeline

     What’s Your Line? was a TV quiz show so popular that it ran for 17 seasons — 1950 to 1967 — and 877 episodes.       For the four B-List celebrities (can you name one or two of them?) asking questions and the millions watching, the point of interest was typically the oddity of the job or the improbability of the match between job and holder. For added challenge, they could seek only yes or no answers. All in all, there was more fun in the...

Turns out it’s complicated

     I was casting to a rip-rapped, Bay shoreline laden with the remnants of an aged dock. There were multiple piers, railings and decks, long fallen into total disrepair. Curiously, there were no nearby buildings of any kind that explained the structure’s presence. It was, however, a white perch playground.      It was also a hazardous place to throw a spinner-bait, but if one managed to keep the lure away from the pilings and planks there was a good chance...