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Kids and school buses are on the move

      More than 83,000 students — the most ever — are now traveling to schools across Anne Arundel County every week. Calvert County’s schoolkids number 16,000. That’s a lot of children and teens walking to bus stops, car pools or directly to school in the early morning and afternoon hours.      Back to school time is time to remember to Look Up, Look Out, and be aware of kids walking during school arrival and dismissal times.

Fourth-graders free at state parks and more

      Autumn’s moderate days invite us to pack up the camping gear and head to a park. If you have a fourth-grade student, your park visit can be free.        For the fourth year, fourth-grade children and their families enjoy free admission to national public lands and state parks thanks to a partnership of Maryland Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Expanded calendar means more play time

      Squeezing the last remains from summer? Head to a county park, where you can launch a kayak, run trails, play fetch with your pooch or enjoy a picnic.       Beginning this week, four Anne Arundel County parks are open seven days a week, from 7:30am to dusk. That’s more time for you to get outside and enjoy all the Bay has to offer.      Visit Quiet Waters in Annapolis, Kinder Farm Park in Millersville, Fort Smallwood Park or Downs Park, both in Pasadena. 
       It was a long hot summer. With (hopefully) many days packed with fun in the sun and on the water, we look forward to those days when ­summer’s humidity has finally been wrung out and a cool breeze greets us every morning.
       Autumn is on the horizon. The air is light, skies often blue and leaves full of color. It’s one of Chesapeake Country’s most splendid seasons.
       This issue of Bay Weekly shows you how to sweetly kiss summer goodbye and welcome the wonders of fall. Here are 50 Ways to Leave Your Summer, a chronology of fun, fare and festivals stretching from early September through Thanksgiving.
1 Eat Local, Eat Well 
      You can read American history in the work we do. 
If ever an artistic wiz there was, it’s Tim Scheirer
       “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain,” said the man behind the curtain to Dorothy and her friends as the Wizard’s true identity came to light. Though we discovered he was simply an ordinary man, his wonderful skills dazzled the onlookers as he enlightened, encouraged, educated and invited us all to find our way home.
Guitar hero lives up to his billing
       Nine-year-old Jeffrey Allen of St. Mary’s County has had a passion for music since birth, says his mom Kimberly Allen. Specifically the music of country music star Brad Paisley.        “He went to his first concert at the age of three to see Brad Paisley perform in Baltimore,” Kimberly says. “He likes to make signs for concerts, where we may be closer to the stage.”
The Anne Arundel Food Bank’s new face looks to get the ­non-profit new space
      No one has ever become poor by giving. –Anne Frank           Susan Thomas is breaking in some new shoes, walking a path blazed by Food Bank founder Bruce Michalec. 

Nationally certified red-carded firefighters go wherever it burns hottest

       Montana. Colorado. Texas. California. In all those hotbox states and more, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Forest Services are sweating to control fires that have already burned more than five million acres of land and wrecked thousands of homes and businesses.

Nine-and-a half-incher sets an unofficial record

         The minimum keepable size for Atlantic blue crabs is five to five and one-quarter inches, depending on the season. Crabs that size are ranked as smalls. Mediums range up to six inches, large six and a half and jumbo up to seven. Crabs seven inches and up are ranked as behemoths, also called heavyweights or whales.           So what do you call a blue crab measuring nine and one half inches tip to tip?