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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

Listen up to tease plot from prattle

Colonial Players bills the World War II drama Watch On the Rhine as the first in their American Standard series, “presented for the nostalgia of older audiences or introduction to younger patrons.” As winner of the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play in 1941, this play would seem a good choice. It has star appeal: The hit film featured Bette Davis and Paul Lukas, who won an Oscar for Best Actor. It is historically compelling: A call to arms for a pre-war America...

Loaded with two charming leads, this movie doesn’t quite pull off its con

Nicky Spurgeon (Will Smith: After Earth) has a charming smile and a light touch. He’s adept at cons from lifting wallets to convincing investors that an empty warehouse is the Federal Reserve. A third-generation conman, Nicky has managed to stay successful in the game by staying isolated.     When he meets Jess (Margot Robbie: The Wolf of Wall Street), a beautiful con clumsily targeting horny men, he sees potential. Jess becomes his student in the true art of the hustle...

Harriet Tubman now conducting tours

History is a bigger hall nowadays, with room at the table for more people than the old white guys who used to rule there. So a good story for any week of the year is the new prominence coming to Harriet Tubman as a hero of Maryland, New York and our nation.     Harriet Tubman, a contemporary of Abe Lincoln, escaped slavery only to return home, to Dorchester County, to conduct many more enslaved people along the Underground Railroad she had followed to freedom.   ...

On February 28, 1994, my granddaughter was born six weeks premature in Anne Arundel Medical Center. Katie weighed less than five pounds and had a mild case of jaundice. Because she was such a preemie, for four weeks they kept her in the hospital, where she was initially connected to several devices. I credit the nurses and staff at the hospital for their excellent skills and care in ensuring that she survived those early weeks.     I visited Katie so frequently that the nurses...

For years I have traveled throughout Maryland and seen the Maryland State Flag displayed improperly at private residences, on boats, at restaurants, fire departments, government buildings and even the Annapolis Visitors Center. Now that Under Armour has popularized the Maryland colors with their sports clothing it seems to be everywhere. So let’s do the right thing and fly the Maryland State Flag correctly.     Briefly, the flag consists of two heraldic emblems. The black...

One man is the difference between life and death for creatures great and small

Deep in the maze of Chesapeake Ranch Estates, St. Francis of Bay Country gives sanctuary and modern medicine to the creatures of our wild. From tiny to the mighty, all are welcome — within the guidelines of federal and state agencies and six permits that control the work of Orphaned Wildlife Rescue Center.     “My main thing is that every life form has a right to live,” says Ron Wexler, whose lifelong calling is giving “the helping hand that makes the...

Oh, the creatures we’ve seen

You find them sitting atop shelves at libraries, inside toy chests and in the hands of parents turning well-worn pages in a nighttime ritual of reading the rhymes, words and wisdom of Dr. Seuss and his unforgettable characters.     From 1928 until his death in 1990, Theodor Seuss Geisel wrote and illustrated 60-plus books for children and adults as Dr. Seuss.     The Seuss menagerie includes Horton the elephant who preaches that all people are important; the...

Learn from plantsman Bill Cullina and ­benefit Unity Gardens

This time of year gardeners feel the itch for warm weather. We’re wistful about anything green and have gardening books spread out in inconvenient places in eagerness for another season.     Scratch the itch by honing your design skills with plantsman, author and Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens executive director William Cullina. He comes to Annapolis March 7 to talk about the botany of design.     Raising consciousness of things local extends to the plants...

Can our Free Will Astrologer break the late-winter blues?

Now is the winter of our discontent.         Cold February lingers like a crust of dirty snow. Pipes freeze and people shiver. Spring may be only weeks away, but getting there is a slog.     You’ve got to be real creative to talk yourself out of such a state.     Enter Rob Breszny, our Free Will Astrologer.     His get-out-of February advice for you Scorpios is so good that I’ve made an editorial decision...

There’s work overhead on the ISS

Thursday evening the waxing gibbous moon stands above the constellation Orion, appearing as if it were the hunter’s head in profile. The next night it is above and to the left of Betelgeuese, Orion’s shoulder, and the two form a nice line with Rigel, the hunter’s foot. Saturday Luna is below the twins of Gemini, Castor and Pollux, and above Procyon, the lead star in the constellation Canis Minor, the Little Dog. Off to the east is brilliant Jupiter. Sunday the moon rests in...