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Where and when to go to catch summer's favorite holiday

The fun’s better when you stay safe

Star-spangled nun commemorates our national anthem

On the Fourth of July, we celebrate reason and high ideals

Chesapeake Bay gets a summer show

Churches on a mission to save the Bay

Yes, we’ll gather at the river, The beautiful, the beautiful river; Gather with the saints at the river That flows by the throne of God. –Hymn by Robert Lowry   We all live downstream. How clean our water is depends a lot on our upstream neighbors, just as those who live downstream from you trust you to keep it healthy. With so much water running through Chesapeake Country, keeping it drinkable, fishable and swimmable is a massive task that requires many hands.  ...

Heeding spring’s reminder that water is a force in our lives

Once spring starts coming, you can’t nag it back underground. Wind and chill, I complain, stole the weekend. And when the weather was fair, flu kept me inside.     What’s a little chill? We feel fine, the cherubic pink blossoms of magnolias proclaimed. Forsythia didn’t need sunshine to shoot yellow through its switches. Willow goes green as happily in the 40s as in the 60s. Maple is littering my lawn with a new bumper crop of spent blossoms before its last year...

What’s with State and Church Circles?

Annapolis has a really strange layout. Is it on purpose or due to hundreds of years of use and expansion? Church and State Circles are close together by design. Their proximity serves as an illustration that church and state were linked in Colonial times.     The first capital of Maryland was St. Mary’s City in what is now St. Mary’s County. Cecil Calvert, the second Lord Baltimore, who founded the colony, was a Catholic, and that was unusual in those times. Most...

Lend your boat and experience to help keep America at the forefront of technology

The Bay beats a classroom for teaching science, ­technology, engineering and math.     Many good sailors believe sailing is an art. All great sailors know that sailing is about the science, math and engineering that go into designing, building and piloting a modern sailboat. That’s not news at the National Sailing Hall of Fame in Annapolis.     “Sailing has a large crossover with science, engineering and math. Sailors constantly use these...

Help Calvert Start a Barn Quilt Trail

If barns aren’t the place you’d look for quilts, maybe you’re sticking too close to home. “Thousands of barn quilts exist around the country including some in Garrett County and Carroll County,” explains Bob Carpenter, executive director of the Arts Council of Calvert County.     A barn quilt is a replica of one square from a quilt, painted on plywood (usually eight by eight feet) and mounted on the side of barn.     Soon you’...

Great for tight spaces or poor soil

A couple of years ago, I initiated a demonstration on growing vegetables in bales of straw using organic fertilizer and chemical. My test consisted of preparing the bales in two ways. On one, I applied three pounds of 4-3-4 Holy Tone Organic. On another, 2.5 cups of 10-10-10 fertilizer. I kept both bales wet until their internal temperatures were equal to those of ambient air.     Temperatures in the bales treated with 4-3-4 organic fertilizer reached 120 degrees within days....

Some days, it isn’t the fish that count

Sometimes nothing goes right, and it just doesn’t seem to matter. The original plan was to start out at tide fall. According to the charts, that meant about 11am at the mouth of the Magothy. But of course it was closer to one o’clock when Mike, Dale and I finally launched my skiff.     The high tide, we noticed, was stalled, but perhaps ready to fall as we stowed our gear and motored out into the river channel. Intending to methodically work every area where we had...

A sequel without a lot to say

Paris Portokalos (Elena Kampouris: American Odyssey) longs to escape her family. Her mother, Toula (Nia Vardalos: Star vs. The Forces of Evil), is clingy and desperate, her grandfather pressures her to get married and make babies at 17 and the rest of them are loud and obnoxious. Paris hopes to flee to college far, far away. Her mother counters by pressuring her daughter to stay close to home.     Toula smothers her daughter because that’s how she’s learned to act by...

Help for affording college

Right now is the time to apply for scholarships. Here are four.     The Coast Guard Foundation awards scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 to children of Coast Guard members present or past. Deadline March 15: bit.ly/1WhEcv4.     The Calvert Marine Museum’s Fossil Club offers the $500 Betty (Sandy) Roberts Scholarship for Natural Sciences to graduating seniors in Southern Maryland in pursuit of post-secondary education in natural sciences. Deadline...

Roadside buffers trap pollution in their roots

It’s not too early for planting trees — especially when you’ve got the digging power of the Maryland State Highway Administration. They’re busy planting roadside buffers of 8,700 trees in Anne Arundel County. Deciduous and evergreen in mixed rows, those trees will improve the health of the Chesapeake watershed by capturing pollution-producing nitrogen and phosphorus in their root systems.     Varieties are all Chesapeake natives: serviceberry, dogwood,...