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Articles by Sandra Olivetti Martin

8th-grader’s plan wins statewide peace writing contest

“I hear a buzz. … It’s a group text but all the numbers are blocked. It reads check out this geek, and the picture connected to it is of my best friend Sarah.”
    Those words, and the thousand following, won Central Middle School’s Jenna O’Connell first prize in this year’s Fred B. Benjamin Peace Writing Contest for Middle Schoolers.
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Good neighbor provides trailside rest area

Get off your feet — or seat — at the new Allan and Edie Segree Rest Area behind the Broadneck Library on the Broadneck Trail. The 1.2-mile Broadneck Trail, running parallel to busy College Parkway, is a favorite path for bicyclists, joggers and walkers. Opened in 2013, it will connect with the B&A Trail eventually.
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Great Schooner Race, Volvo Ocean Race set sail

Sailboats, it’s arguable, were the first technological wonder to shrink the wide world to a global village. They’re still doing it. As the U.S. Sailboat Show ended its 45th encampment in Annapolis, two great openwater races demonstrate the lasting power of wind and maritime ingenuity.
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Jump right in at Calvert Marine Museum

Visit Calvert Marine Museum starting October 11 and you’ll see all the way from the heights of the sky to the sheltering shallows to the dark depths. You’ll see life beneath the surface. You’ll see octopoid special effects that outsmart CGI animation, part of the ordinary antics of 150 species in the greater Chesapeake community.
    What you won’t see is how this miracle of 21st century estuarine immersion came to be.
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Species at risk in Maryland are a roll call of birds we know and love

Make room for more.    
    The Vanished Birds of North America, now on exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., features passenger pigeons, Carolina parakeets and heath hens.
    But two new reports tell us that list may soon be much longer.
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The healing power of a good story

Bob Timberg has a face you don’t forget.
    How the U.S. Naval Academy graduate and Marine first lieutenant — handsome son of a mother who was a McCall’s cover girl at 13 — got that face is a question you don’t ask.
    Yet now, “as I edge into my seventies,” Timberg says, he has written a book revealing the whole story.
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Training makes a happier fellow

Optimus Prime was a playful, high-energy puppy when Sergeant Gregory ‘GJ’ Tomas Jr. received orders deploying him to Afghanistan for a second tour with the 82nd Airborne Division out of Fort Bragg, N.C.
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Still time to escape in a good book

     With half of summer stretching before you, there’s still time to get lost in a good book.
    Armchair travelers stretch our confined worlds with books that take us places we’ll probably never see on our own. Certainly not with the open-eye and open-heart clarity of the ­writers we love best.
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Cool high-summer recipes from Maryland’s 2014 Buy Local Cookbook

    Heaven & earth never agreed better to frame a place for man’s habitation; were it fully manured and inhabited by industrious people.
    Captain John Smith barely exaggerated. So good are the fish and flesh, fruit and vegetables of Chesapeake Country that they need no adornment. Or very little. Salt and pepper, oil and vinegar are complements enough. Add some fire, and you’ve got all you need.
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River sneakers step into history

After 27 years, Bernie Fowler got a new suit of clothes for his 2014 Patuxent River Wade In.
    “It’s a historical day. For 27 years now, I’ve waded in tattered tennis shoes,” the 90-year-old Patuxent River champion and retired Maryland senator told his crowd of followers assembled under a striped marquee on a perfect June Sunday.
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