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Photographer Jay Fleming documents life on — and in — the water

Mack the Lab is Maryland’s chief apiary sniffer

High school band tops in Maryland

Clear skies forecast for this weekend’s Chesapeake Bay Blues Festival

Jeanne Kelly’s Encore Chorale proves music can reverse aging

They’ll keep us company till the osprey return

Right on time, tundra swans
have dropped from the skies over Chesapeake Country like giant snowflakes. They are big birds, weighing 20 pounds or so in maturity with a six-foot wingspan.     About December 1, perhaps I heard their raucous cries cutting through the dark of night. Four or five days later on Fairhaven pond, I saw a pair of white birds so big that they couldn’t have been gulls. December 10 the evidence was incontrovertible: a pair flapping over the pond, a...

Better options for bagging leaves become the rule

Be sure to ask Santa for compostable paper bags or a new bin for your yard waste in 2017. Beginning in January, neither Annapolis nor Anne Arundel County will accept plastic bags in its curbside pickup of grass clippings, leaves, Christmas trees and other yard waste.     The new regulations mean putting yard waste in a bin (but not your yellow one for recyclables), biodegradable paper bags or in a secure bundle tied with twine. Mark reusable containers with an X. In the city of...

When you think about it, a homemade Christmas cookie is quite the thing

As a taste treat, it’s hard to complain about an Oreo. Still, you’ll find in these pages reason after reason why store-bought cookies — even Oreos — can’t compare with homemade. Especially at Christmas, which is for cookies what Thanksgiving is for pumpkin pie and Hanukkah is for latkes.     Taking advantage of that season — and under the influence of my fondness for Christmas cookies — we’ve made this issue the Bay Weekly Cookie...

Get a fast start with my Gouin brew

This is a great time to activate the compost pile. The fallen leaves are rich in nutrients and organic matter. Mother Nature has been using leaves as natural mulch since the beginning of time.     I begin with my leaf blower, blowing as many leaves as possible under the branches of the shrubs to mulch them over winter.     For my compost pile, I then use the lawnmower to chop the remaining leaves by mowing the lawn with the blade set at five inches above the...

Sure-to-please choices

You’ve tried to choose a gift for the sport in your life, the dedicated angler, canoeist, hiker, shooter or sailor. And you’ve failed.     The look in an aficionado’s eye on opening a present naively intended to enhance the enjoyment of a particular sport is a dead giveaway. Just what am I going to do with this? Next — but too late to mask the eye movement and expression of astonishment — come effusive explanations of just how special the gift is...

A story for the original Star Wars generation

The campaign against the Empire is not going well for the rebel alliance. Momentum is building, slowly, but not consensus. Half the alliance wants war; the other thinks senate proceedings and trials better for the galaxy.     Things get worse when scientist Galen Erso (Mads Mikkelsen: Doctor Strange) sends a secret message reporting that he’s helped build a weapon the Empire calls the Death Star.     It has the power to destroy a planet with a single shot....

Bay Weekly’s Guide to Giving to the Generous

On your holiday giving list, the easiest people are the wanters. Their wish lists are long. We live in a material world where clever and determined shopping can satisfy just about any whim.     Not so easy are the givers. Generosity is a hard act to follow. People used to doing for others never think of asking for themselves     So what they want for Christmas, or for Chanukah, you’ll have to ask them.     That’s just what we’ve...

Way better than the Elf on the Shelf

To support his parish, Father James Boric, associate pastor at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Severna Park, will do just about anything.     So on Tuesday, December 6 — with temperatures in the low 40s and nearly constant rain, amounting to three-quarters of an inch — he slept on the school roof. He had, after all, promised — though that promise was made before the day’s weather forecast became clear. But for a man who aspires to be a...

Once upon a time …

Step into the ancient Chesapeake, and you could have become a crocodile’s dinner. So it’s a good thing all those crocodiles were creature of the Miocene epoch (23 to five million years ago), gone long before Homo sapiens discovered the modern Chesapeake.     Their remains, however, are still here, along the Calvert Cliffs, as well as in coastal states down to Florida.     There avid fossil collector George Klein, of Chapel Hill, NC, got to know these...

Downtown offers Grinch-free options through the year

It’s the shopping season, which means downtown Annapolis businesses are busier than ever. Which also means more traffic and more parking challenges.     Once again, our capital city offers free three-hour parking at meters through January 1 plus a couple of other ways to make holiday shopping and touring more cheerful for both drivers and pedestrians.      “Annapolis is known as one of America’s best holiday towns, and we want to make it...