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Expert tips for the new year and beyond

That’s our hope for you in 2017

Your pot must runneth over

A triumph of hope over experience

We’ve saved the best for last


My favorite stories of 2016

Give, and good comes back to you

It’s the season of giving, when our grateful hearts yearn to reach out to help one another. Yet the number of Americans volunteering annually is declining, leaving non-profit organizations scrambling to meet the needs of their communities.     How can you turn your gratitude into action? Join the ranks of the 6,000 Anne Arundel Countians registered as potential volunteers with the Anne Arundel County Volunteer Center.     The Anne Arundel County Volunteer...

Memory is a timeless place

The most important story in the world is one you know best: your own.     Lifelong Annapolitan Ralph Crosby tells his in Memoirs of a Main Street Boy.     “As I started thinking about my grandchildren and the story I might tell them, two things came to mind, two things I knew better than anything else: my own life experiences and my city, Annapolis,” the 82-year-old told me. “Wouldn’t it be great to pass on how the city’s unique...

DNR considers protections from bowfishers

Like osprey, cownose rays have abandoned Chesapeake Country for warmer climates. But they’ll be back late spring, finning through our waters to eat, mate and give birth. Baby rays are born, not hatched like their marine cousins, the skates.     Does their proliferation endanger the recovery of our native oyster, both in the wild and in aquaculture operations?     That’s been their rep in recent years, for favorite ray foods are oysters and clams....

Coyotes yes, bears no

The region is home to many types of animals, but not many large predators. Historically, bobcats, cougars, bears and wolves lived in Chesapeake Country.     Coyotes are newcomers. The western species wasn’t seen in Maryland until 1972. Since then, they’ve expanded their territory to all Maryland counties. They’ve thrived in part because they don’t face much competition from other predators as we have no more of similar size.     “The...

That’s a blessing I’m seeking to count this Thanksgiving

If you’ve seen the brand-new movie Arrival (and if you haven’t, do, but more about that later), you know that feelings find expression in different ways. Very different languages are the movie’s subjects. But there’s more to the irrepressible drive than language. We sentient beings (including Heptapods) are compelled to impress ourselves on the world, by whatever means we choose.     This season of the year brings blessings to mind. In the spirit of the...

Midshipmen take on Shakespeare on youth, war and relations between the sexes

Megan Geigner, the new director of the U.S. Naval Academy’s midshipman theater group The Masqueraders, grabbed the helm with deft touch and a focused vision, staging a delightfully energetic version of Shakespeare’s popular comedy, Much Ado About Nothing. She chose the play because it’s about young people, more specifically young people coming home from war, and about gender relations.     Instead of the Bard’s Messina, Geigner has cleverly changed the...

Dig deep for tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and other bulbs

If you want big flowers and more flowers from your bulbs next spring, plant them now. If you wait until the ground starts to freeze, you’ll see smaller flowers and short stems.     Spring-flowering bulbs can initiate flower buds only if they undergo different stages of cooling. The bulbs you plant this fall have not yet initiated a flower bud internally. If you were to plant that bulb in a flowerpot and grow it in your home or greenhouse, it would grow — but it would...

Four faults that lead to lost fish — and how to correct them

That moment is clearly etched in my memory. It was early evening as my skiff softly coasted into a deserted shoreline. I was a long cast off a small tidal pond outlet at the first stages of a falling flood. Firing a top-water plug to just a foot or two off the sand, I gave the lure the slightest pop. A mighty swirl engulfed the bait, and my pulse went sky-high.     Feeling immediate pressure on my line, I set the hook, and a large, powerful fish took off, sending its wake...

What do these aliens want from us?

One day, they arrive. Twelve giant pods hover over major countries throughout the world. No one knows where they came from. No one saw them coming. No one knows what they want.     Every few hours, a door opens, allowing humans to enter the spaceships. Then what? The humans are stumped on how to communicate. Figuring it out falls to Dr. Louise Banks (Amy Adams: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice), a trusted linguist who has helped the military translate enemy radio chatter. Her...

For the pros, it’s easy as pie

Thanksgiving dinner is never over until the pie is served.      If you’re seeking perfection but that final course is out of your comfort zone, turn to the professionals.         There are premium pies to be had in Chesapeake ­Country, and Bay Weekly has found them for you. Here’s what you’ll find at six champion pie bakers, from Prince Frederick to Severn. Blondies, Prince Frederick “Buy fresh spices every year,...