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BGE is the first utility to make ­Certified Wildlife Habitat’s green list

Maryland has just gotten a little friendlier to wildlife.     Six right of ways beneath power lines carrying electricity generated at Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant are now Certified Wildlife Habitats. Certified Wildlife Habitats can be our backyard, cities, public spaces and now utility easements. Baltimore Gas and Electric, which manages the property, is the first utility on the green list.

Give them a purposeful new life

Tired of seeing all those unused broken crayons in the arts and crafts box? Here’s how to recycle them and do some good work at the same time.     Suzy Provine and the Glen Burnie Civitan Club are collecting those broken bits to send to The Crayon Initiative, which will turn them into new ones. These new crayons will then be put into the hands of children at schools, hospitals, arts programs and other child-focused organizations.

Free exchanges, kids’ writing contests ­promote mutual understanding

Since 2002, world artists from Estonia to Egypt have made stops in Annapolis in free cultural exchanges organized and funded by World Artist Experiences.     This week, Colorful China comes to St. John’s College for a show (7pm Sunday October 11) featuring music, dancing and the traditional costumes of such ethnic minorities as the Uyghur, Dong and Miao peoples of China. The performers stay in local homes to get a feel of life here.

Jug Bay protects the Bay and its creatures big and small

Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary in Lothian is one of those treasures we sometimes forget in our jewelry box of Chesapeake natural wonders. More than just one park and beyond typical county offerings, its ever-expanding boundary lines encompass more than 1,700 acres of wetlands, marsh, upland forests and meadows. The park includes the main sanctuary, the Parris Glendening Nature Preserve, the Patuxent Wetland Park and Wootens Landing.

The B&A Trail provides more than a smooth ride

The Baltimore-Annapolis Trail saved Tom Caraker’s life. In 2000, Type II diabetes and multiple strokes tormented the now 81-year-old, depriving him of feeling in his hands. Defying the doctor’s orders he dug a mountain bike out of his shed and went riding through Severna Park. Squeezing handbrakes brought back first tingling, then full feeling.

Let’s Move! helps make a healthy city

Annapolis is making such strides in advancing fitness that First Lady Michelle Obama ranks our capital city as a top community in her signature Let’s Move! initiative. The honor means healthier citizens — plus White House visits for city movers and shakers.

Dreams come true in Los Angeles

Maryland Olympians swelled with power and pride in competition among 6,500 athletes from 165 countries at this summer’s Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.     “I became a leader,” says Chris Dooley of Denton. In competition, the kayaker won a bronze medal in his 200-meter singles race.

It cost more than $31 million to replace outdated Lothian ­Elementary with a school designed for the 21st-century

When a new school comes to your neighborhood, you can’t help but wonder what your tax dollars have bought. In Lothian, you paid for a LEED Silver certified sleek, sophisticated and thoroughly modern school that keeps up with the 21st century in hopes that the kids studying there will, too. It is the only new school built in either Anne Arundel or Calvert counties this year. The cost? Only $31.7 million.

A ship wrecked long ago now tells its stories

Roads came late to Chesapeake Country. Well into the 20th century, Chesapeake Bay was our central corridor of transportation. Tributaries extended the system, carrying goods and people in and out of the interior.     Now an 18th century merchant ship has risen from its watery grave on the Eastern Shore’s Nanticoke River, reminding us of our history and sparking our sense of wonder.

A library card

“What’s cooler than being cool? Having a library card,” says ‘Joe Cool’ Snoopy. That’s because kids who use the library do better in school.     Library cards are free and can be used at any Maryland public library for e-books, e-magazines, downloadable movies and music, reference resources, HelpNow! homework help and Brainfuse free online tutoring.