Volume 16, Issue 23 - June 5 - June 11, 2008



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Way Downstream

photo by Rosalie O’Connor

J. Ernest Green — the renowned music director of both the Annapolis Chorale and St. Anne’s Episcopal Church — takes on a visiting gig at Washington, D.C.’s National Cathedral on June 28. To sing in Eugene Sutton as the new Episcopal bishop of the Diocese of Maryland, Green leads a choir of more than 300 voices and musicians from 117 diocesan parishes plus the Washington Symphonic Brass …

As the school year ended, 68 Maryland schools broke an environmental record. Nearly three dozen new schools earned Maryland Green School status for teaching green lessons and training future eco-heroes in eco-friendly practices — including recycling, planting trees or rain gardens, reusing paper and conserving energy. An additional 32 green schools renewed their commitments for sustained environmental awareness. Some 200 schools in most of Maryland’s 24 jurisdictions have warranted environmental honors in the Green Schools Award Program since 1999. Local first-time Green School winners include Benfield Elementary, Broadneck High, Chesapeake Bay Middle, Hebron-Harman Elementary, Mayo Elementary, St. Andrews United Methodist Day School, Northern High, Patuxent High, Plum Point Elementary and Windy Hill Middle …

It’s better to go with the flow, at least at the beach. Rip currents sweep away summer fun when wave action pushes water near the beach, then surges back out to sea. Such surges can keep even strong swimmers away from shore if they fight the flow. Tricky tides can travel up to eight feet per second — faster than racing Olympic swimmers. Some beaches post warnings, but your best protection is knowing how to escape the grip of rip currents: Swim outward with the current before heading back to shore. That’s the message of National Rip Current Awareness Week. Find out more at: www.ripcurrents.noaa.gov

No taxation without representation say Maryland Independent voters, who complain they pay for elections they can’t vote in. Editor and screenwriter Harrison Demchick of Owings Mills founded Free State Independents to demand that primary elections be opened to alternate-parties voters. In Maryland, primaries are organized by each of the two principle political parties and segregated, so that only Democrats can vote in the Democratic primary and Republicans in the Republican primary. On most issues and offices, independents are barred from primary voting. Citing that all Marylanders — regardless of political party — pay for primaries, the Free State Independents are petitioning state government for the right to cast a ballot. Join the voting revolution: freestateindependents@gmail.com

If you cringed at news that the average price of regular gas hit a record high this week — $3.958 a gallon — go west. Garrett County Chamber of Commerce is offering fuel specials for visitors of Deep Creek Lake. Claim a $25 gas card or other discounts when you do business with specific resorts, marine rentals or other companies. Save through November 1: www.visitdeepcreek.com or 301-387-4386 …

Our Creature Feature comes from Wellington, New Zealand, where a pointed attack cost William Singalargh $545 Australian. Singalargh was convicted of chucking a hedgehog at a 15-year-old boy, causing leg abrasions and puncture wounds. The Whakatane District Court gave no reason for the attack but convicted Singalargh of assault and offensive behavior. Singalargh escaped a more serious charge of assault with a weapon — which would have earned him up to five years in jail — when a judge determined that an airborne hedgehog posed no deadly threat to the victim. The attack did prove deadly to the hedgehog, whose carcass was used as evidence in this prickly case …

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