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Time to fill your freezer

A dilapidated hotel holds more than dusty sheets in this hilarious thriller

Compass Rose Theater creates a small, intimate miracle

      For the first two weeks of October, the U.S. Boat Shows are the hottest ticket in Annapolis. 

Armenia glories in a fresh flush of independence

    As Chesapeake Country celebrates the Fourth of July, raising beer bottles and crab mallets to the heroes of America’s Revolutionary War, so here in Armenia — where I’m serving as a Peace Corps volunteer — people are celebrating a revolutionary action of their own.     In April, following mass protests and nationwide marches, Armenia’s best known and least-loved politician was forced to resign. He was hounded out of office by 2.5...
    From San Antonio, a Fourth of July fireworks accident offers a cautionary tale for coming festivities.      You never know when you’ll end up in proximity to a wild child or beer-soaked fellow who blew a chunk of his paycheck on colorful boomers in Pennsylvania, South Carolina or one of those states that sell real fireworks.     So it might be good to hear about the 44-year-old Texan who showed up at the San Antonio Military...

Not every species is a fan of the annual spectacle of light and noise

    No matter how much you like fireworks, your dogs — and maybe cats — are not looking forward to the July 4th tradition. All the festivities, lights and loud noises can frighten and even threaten your furry friends.     Phantom Fireworks, a rapidly expanding fireworks retailer supplying the explosives to national chains, knows the down- as well as the upside of fireworks. From its research come suggestions on how you can help your pet endure the...

Eight restaurants compete for fastest honors

    You’ve got thick skin, you work well with a team, you know how to handle difficult people and your job is sometimes high-stress. What are you?     If you answered food server, you’re correct.     I’ve worked in restaurants for seven years. There’s a general hierarchy to restaurant work. If you want to serve or bartend but have no experience, you’ll probably start as a host. In an unusual twist, I began as a server...

Your guide to fireworks, parades and celebrations

Friday June 29 Historic St. Mary’s Fireworks: Pyrotechnics follow Chesapeake Orchestra’s birthday concert in honor of Leonard Bernstein, with music of Sousa, Tchaikovsky and more. Bring lawn seating and a picnic or buy from food trucks. Arrive early at this thronged summer favorite. 7pm, Townhouse Green, St. Mary’s College, St. Mary’s City: www.chesapeakeorchestra.org.   Saturday, June 30 Chesapeake Beach Fireworks go up from two barges anchored beyond the town...

They don't read, but drivers do

    “Everybody here tries to do everything they can to take care of good ol’ Deale.”     So says Ryan Tucker, son of Joe Tucker, the man behind JT Restorations of Deale. From picking up trash along the road to helping turtles cross the street, Tucker has always had a heart for his hometown.     The recent death of a duckling gave him a new cause. A speeder careless of the creatures that share these backroads hit the bird.  ...
Cape St. Claire Celebration 10am from the Fire Department to the Main Beach for fun from 11am-2pm: tug-of war, sand-castle building contest, water-balloon toss, spoon and egg races, watermelon-eating contest and the Cape’s BBQ ribs and patriotic dessert contest: 410-757-1223; www.cscia.org/cape-st-claire/cape-st-claires-annual-july-4th-celebration   Severna Park Parade 10am from St. Martin’s in-the-Field Church, to Severna Park High School, to Evergreen Road to B&A Blvd to...

Maybe that's because it's what this sparrow eats?

    Many animals are named by the sounds they make or the food that they eat. The grasshopper sparrow is named for both. These little birds live in grasslands from Canada to Florida, where they like to perch on any stick or fence and sing a song that sounds like a flying grasshopper. They also feed on grasshopper and other grasshopper-like insects.     In the summer, they make nests by clumping grass near the ground. Thus their nests are at risk during hay...

Killing AA Co's polystyrene ban puts us there

    Here in Chesapeake Country, we spend a lot of time living in the past.     We celebrate our heritage not just back to 1634, when Lord Baltimore’s colonists sailed in to stay, but all the way back to native times. We love our historic buildings, tracing many back to those heroic days of Independence we celebrate this week. We retrace historic footsteps along the Capt. John Smith and Star-Spangled Banner trails.     We say we try to...

How could losing 147 million sooks be healthy?

    Good news is scarce these days, so I was relieved when I saw Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ results of the 2018 Blue Crab Winter Dredge Survey.     But I did a double-take when I read in the report,  “Chesapeake Bay Blue Crab Population Healthy.”     I was confused. Expecting to see the basis for the claims of health, I came upon the revelation of a 42 percent plunge in spawning female numbers. Wasn’t...