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John Maounis marked the trail for you

The Chesapeake Bay is not any old park. When is the last time you saw a park that was entirely on the water?     When John Maounis started work as superintendent at the National Park Service Chesapeake Bay office seven years ago, he had never seen such a thing either. His job was to find the best way for the National Park Service to be a part of Bay protection.

30-year-old Bay-built has no fear of “young and modern boats”

The brotherhood of Dickerson sailboats stretches far and wide.     Built on the Eastern Shore under three owners from 1946 to 1987, Dickersons became so beloved that afficionados compete in the Find a Lost Dickerson Sailboat contest to complete the registry of every Dickerson ever built.

No. 1 waterman leaves a Chesapeake legacy

Word spread fast across marine radios from New Jersey to North Carolina, via e-mail, telephones and cell phones, Facebook, the Internet and Twitter on March 14. Captain Larry Simns, president of the Maryland Watermen’s Association for 40 years, passed away at age 75. Watermen, environmentalists, seafood processors, politicians, state bureaucrats and many more of us stopped in our tracks. I did, though I knew Larry’s passing was coming.

He was ‘good for it’

“I’m the only Jewish redneck captain on the Bay. What could be better?” Captain Bob Slaff liked to say, with a huge smile beneath his signature handlebar mustache. Capt. Bob was an icon in Maryland’s recreational and commercial maritime communities. He was also my good friend, mentor and colleague.

For Michelina Scotto, raising $10,000 is easy. It’s the 24 hours of cold water that has her worried

For Michelina Scotto of Stevensville, the easy part is raising the $10,000 qualification fee for joining the Super Plunge Team of the 17th Annual MSP Polar Bear Plunge benefitting Special Olympics Maryland.     So what if fundraising — including a Fire and Ice Party January 19 — cost the restaurateur, co-owner of Luna Blu in Annapolis and Rustico in Stevensville, more than she expects to raise? Raising money is what Scotto knows.     Cold is what she fears.

After two members survive cardiac arrest, music keeps Telesma alive

Last spring, Ian Hesford dropped to the stage from cardiac arrest while playing a show with his band, Telesma.     After 93 minutes of CPR, a hypothermic treatment and stents in his heart, Hesford survived. Knowing CPR saved their friend’s life, band members and dedicated fans took classes.     Telesma vocalist Joanne Juskus didn’t realize how soon she would put that training to the test.

Leon Tucker’s tour in Mongolia has him longing for Southern Maryland’s balmy winters

To step out into December’s minus-20-degree weather, Leon Tucker layers up “in bundles and bundles” with long underwear, thermal sweatshirts, camel wool socks and a North Face parka. This is not what he meant back home in Deale when he called himself “an outdoors person.”     Mongolia is not what Tucker’s mother, Kathy Norris, imagined for the son who always dreamed of travel. “I thought he was going to take off,” she says, “but not that far!”

Craig Shelden is a believer

Craig Shelden’s two-car garage is his refuge from the world. From this lair, he runs his spare-time robotics business, Shelden Robotics. The two family vehicles are parked outside the double doors.     Inside is neatness and order. A garden rake, trash can and recycling bins are the only clues to a family life beyond the closed door. Blue and red electric tape strategically stuck to the floor in circles and rectangles measures robotic achievement.

Mike Callahan’s Chesapeake Driftwood Tree

Mike Callahan was searching for creative ways to trim his Christmas tree this year. The president of the Southern Maryland Audubon Society wanted a unique, nature-themed tree that he created with his own hands. When a friend suggested using what Chesapeake Bay had to offer, Callahan hit the beaches, hunting and gathering for his creation. At home, he put his hands and mind to work.