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Solar, wind and energy-efficient upgrades on the way

You’ll have to be as high as Mike to enjoy this stoner comedy

There’s a lot involved in getting our kids to and from school safely

Ancient wisdom from the days before AC

One by one, we’re getting back in touch with the grid. By July 3, electricity was restored to three out of four households that lost power to June 29’s derecho. The storm has taught us all a new word and reminded us of some old coping skills.     Even with power on, high summer is Mother Nature’s test of her creatures’ toughness. Over the last half-century, we’ve depended on human ingenuity to skip most of her regularly scheduled tests. But her pop...

I use fences, smells and my dog

Squirrels, rabbits, ground hogs and deer are a common problem in home vegetable gardens. I surround my garden with a four-foot-high four-inch-by-two-inch turkey fence supported by steel fence posts at 10-foot intervals. I also attach an 18-inch-wide pullet fence at the bottom with hog-nose rings. Groundhogs will not climb the turkey fence with the bottom pullet fence. They try but fall backwards because the pullet fence is loosely attached. The bottom edge is buried two to three inches deep to...

Get up early to find the fish and beat the heat

We were drifting quietly well off the mouth of the Severn in 30 feet of water. It was not yet sunrise but the first blush of daylight lit the water’s surface well enough to show some very nervous schools of baitfish swimming around us.     Here and there small menhaden — peanut bunker — would shower into the air, fleeing something sinister below. There must have been a heck of a spawn this spring because I don’t believe I’ve ever seen so many...

Ted

Teddy bears can be pigs

Young John Bennet (Bretton Manley) didn’t have many friends, so for Christmas his parents bought him a stuffed bear named Ted (Seth MacFarlane: Family Guy). Thanks to the magic of the season and the power of a child’s wish, Ted became real.     At first, Ted is a godsend, giving John confidence and companionship. Twenty-seven years later, however, Ted keeps 35-year-old John (Mark Wahlberg:  ) stuck in permanent ­adolescence.     Ted and John...

Who — regardless of age — doesn’t love a good story?

Will Bartlett’s light musical adaptation of Rumplestiltskin has run continuously off-Broadway since 1985 with good reason. With its cantankerous characters and timeless moral, Rumple Who? makes an entertaining way for parents and grandparents to share love of theater with their children.     The familiar story is distilled, updated and less Grimm than the original with musical summaries for each plot development. In this version, Rumpelstiltskin is a kinder and gentler...

A terrific kids’ show — no kidding

Lies. Falsehoods. Tall tales. Call them what you will, some children cling to them long after attaining the age of reason, and Infinity Theatre is to be applauded for broaching the topic with a humorous touch in founder Alan Ostroff’s original play for three to 10-year-olds, The Tall Tales of Enoch.     Enoch (Lance Hayes) is just such a child, a rambunctious third-grader with super-powered imagination, nuclear-fueled energy and a likely diagnosis of attention deficit and...

Looking for ET with Hercules

Given the scorching temperatures of late, you might be surprised to know that earth is at its farthest point from the sun this time of year, called, aphelion. On July 4, Earth reached the apex of its elliptical orbit around the sun at 94,505,851 miles. That’s about three million miles farther than at perihelion, earth’s closest point to the sun.     That may seem like a significant distance, it’s little more than three percent, not enough to account for earth...

The pomp and parades of Independence Day date back to the nation’s founding

Independence Day provides us with a free day of homemade and heartfelt celebrations, ranging from small-town parades to Washington, D.C.’s capital show. Complete with cannon fire, that extravaganza of sound and light lets you imagine the bombardment that drew The Star-Spangled Banner out of Francis Scott Key’s soul.     With the bicentennial of the War of 1812 upon us, it’s tempting to think that our Independence Day fireworks celebrations imitate those rockets...

Farmers markets now selling local corn and peaches

Farmers market shoppers in the know arrive at the Sunday morning Freshfarm Market in Annapolis before 10:30am, when Bob Miller of Nice Farms Creamery sells out of his famous chocolate milk.     Miller is one of 12 farmers and producers who sell at the market near City Dock. Nine hail from Maryland, two from Virginia and one from West Virginia. The market requires producers be part of the Chesapeake Bay watershed. They offer fruits, vegetables, fresh flowers, meats, cheese,...

Calvert County keeps citizens in the know

Calvert County is taking the lead in helping citizens and developers figure out how they’re affected by Maryland’s new law restricting residential development served by septic systems.     For the Chesapeake watershed, the Sustainable Growth and Agricultural Preservation Act of 2012 helps reduce pollution and meet federal Clean Water Act limits on pollutants reaching waterways.     Closer to home, it means the geography in the watershed controls where...