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Unsung hero of the ­Annapolis July 4 Fireworks

A lot has changed since I last saw the Stones on July 4, 1972

Osprey and falcon chicks thriving, with a little help

Beyond pomp, parade and fireworks to shared heritage

July’s two full moons are prime viewing times

No need for fireworks here

Enjoy them at home and at local festivals

Crabs and oysters are the culinary pride of Maryland. As local crab season ends, likely hastened by Hurricane Sandy, the winter oyster harvest has begun, with its variety of oyster celebrations and events.     This Saturday, November 3, take a trip to St. Michaels for the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s OysterFest. Visit from 10am to 4pm to enjoy live music, Chesapeake fare, boat rides, oyster demonstrations, harvesting displays and the always-popular oyster stew...

But storms’ worst tricks give us reason for hope

Sandy was forecast to bring the kind of days Noah knew, with wind, rain and water overwhelming land and livers. Coastal New Jersey and New York sampled a day of floods of biblical proportion. Thank God it wasn’t 40 days.     Chesapeake Country got off easy. Winemaker John Autrey of Huntingtown called Sandy “a wimpy storm.”     Scientific sampling is reaching the same conclusion.     “Less flooding and flow of nutrients than...

Bug 1: Wax Scale

One of the problems of moving houseplants outdoors during the summer months is that they often become infested with insects. You’ll want to control those bugs before bringing your plants back indoors.     A Bay Weekly reader sent me a sample of Christmas cactus that had been outdoors along with her other houseplants. She wrote that the plant had not been growing and, despite her care, continues to decline. On the five-inch-long piece of stem in the envelope, I counted 12...

We may have a week of clean water before Conowingo’s mud plume

We were quite fortunate in avoiding the predicted calamity of Superstorm Sandy. New York and New Jersey did not share our good fortune. The northern winds that blew the whole of the three-day tempest emptied the Bay of water and protected us against the massive storm surge that flooded the coastal areas and created such devastation.     After Sandy passed over us, however, it traveled on up through the Susquehanna drainage into Pennsylvania, all the way to the Great Lakes,...

You can make Hugh Grant old, but you can’t make him Asian

A butterfly flaps its wings in 1849 and starts a revolution in a futuristic Korea. Seven stories traverse time and space, interweaving in an overly simplified metaphor for reincarnation. Such is Cloud Atlas, a bloated, visually stunning, poorly acted and frustrating exercise in filmmaking.     The film follows a core group of characters through several lives. The choices they make in each current life affect their next life. They are also bound to meet certain individuals over...

Fomalhaut glows in the south

Shortly after the sun sets, test your eyes searching for Mars low in the southwest. To the right shines similarly colored Antares, the heart of Scorpius, the gap between the two widening noticeably over the coming week, but they both set before 7pm.     Around the same time, Jupiter rises in the east-northeast, with the red eye of Taurus the bull shining to its right. Thursday and Friday the moon visits old Jove, with the stars of the Pleiades cluster between the two Friday....

From my vineyard, I can see the thriving growth of Maryland wine

Late this summer, my son and I finished the fifth harvest from our vineyards in Southern Maryland. At the same time, Slack Wine and Vineyards also finished our second showing at the Maryland Wine Festival in Westminster, along with 39 other licensed Maryland wineries.     Both events were deemed great successes. The 2012 grape harvest ranks as our favorite harvest to date, due to the extraordinary dry growing conditions and the lack of hurricanes. Last year’s Hurricane...

Former Governor Parris Glendening discusses Smart Growth, long hair and tweeners in stretch limousines

How is life different after politics?     I used to get a haircut every two weeks because I was so often on camera, which exaggerated the slightest curl. Now I get one every five or six weeks. One of the percs of not being in office. Have you had to bite your tongue to avoid criticizing your successors, Robert Ehrlich and Martin O’Malley?     I get along with — more than get along with, we’re friends — Gov. O’Malley, but I’m...

Indulge at Whole Foods Apple Fest Family Fun Day

Before Jobs and Wozniak, apples were known for growing on trees rather than revolutionizing technology. This week we consider the older tradition.     This Saturday, October 27, Whole Foods Annapolis celebrates Apple Fest Family Fun Day, a harvest festival with events and food demonstrations for young and old. Visit between 11am and 3pm to meet orchardist Stephen Balderston of Colora Orchards in northern Maryland. His fifth-generation, 100-acre apple farm grows up to 10...

by League of Women Voters of Anne Arundel County

The Voter’s Guide is a superb primer to the Maryland and Anne Arundel County ballot questions on which we will vote November 6.     The League of Women Voters is a well-known nonpartisan political organization. In its own words, the League “encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues and influences public policy through education and advocacy. The League does not support or oppose any...