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Your guide to Chesaeake Country's freshest produce and more!

Today’s oysterman is likely to be a woman — and a farmer rather than a hunter-gatherer

Local artist Greg Harlin puts his stamp on the Battle of Baltimore

Species at risk in Maryland are a roll call of birds we know and love

No walk in the park in Chesapeake Country

Mountain laurel, blueberries and other acid-lovers, too

You never know what’s going to happen on the Chesapeake

Nobody’s the loser when perch is on the table

We were horribly late. The informal perch tournament had started promptly at 10am, but it was closer to 11 before our boat finally joined the fray. Easing up to the first stop on the planned search pattern, Roger Sexhauer and I made quick casts to within inches of some ancient pilings just off the rocky shoreline while Mike Ebersberger, our captain, set a small anchor. Fishfinder     Rockfish are returning to the mid-Bay, and live-lining is getting red-hot from the Bay Bridge...

The buyer needs to beware — and to be aware

To get the topsoil you want, you’ll have to be precise in your order.          Ask a sand and gravel company to bring a load of topsoil without any more specific instruction, and you may get more, or less, than you bargained for. In the Garden this Week Pick Your Bagworms While They’re Small     Bagworms have hatched, and the young are already feeding. Until early July, the bagworms will grow slowly. But by the time they’re...

The stars and planets are the original fireworks

While these are the shortest nights of the year, many a fond memory is set star-gazing on warm summer evenings. And in between the bursts of flame and the clouds of smoke honoring our independence this week, Friday’s new moon provides a dark backdrop highlighting the greatest show in the heavens.     One of the first lights to appear after sunset, around 8:35, is likely Arcturus almost directly overhead. The brightest star visible and fourth-brightest overall, Arcturus...

The celebration of a nation of immigrants

It’s no wonder that fireworks are Independence Day’s signature. The holiday is explosive with emotion.     And packed with participation.     This week’s 8 Days a Week calendar will tell you that throughout Chesapeake Country, as in all America, in communities large and small we wave flags; march, roll and pedal in parades; bake pies; gather for picnics and barbecues; listen to concerts; eat ice cream; watch baseball; make big bangs and...

JJ Abrams writes a love note to Stephen Spielberg with aliens, explosions and boyish wonder

Did you ever wonder what would have happened if ET had been found by the government instead of that adorable moppet Elliott?     When extraterrestrials don’t get to phone home, they get mightily pissed, according to JJ Abrams’ (Star Trek) new film Super 8. Less an original monster movie than a homage to Stephen Spielberg’s ET and works of the 1970s and ‘80s, Abrams gets away with the tribute by keeping his writing solid and his cast of characters...

Nature Books for All Ages

It’s official: On June 21 — three weeks into the month proclaimed by Gov. Martin O’Malley as Great Outdoors Month — the solstice turned spring into summer. To seize the summer season, Bay Weekly peers into books about the great outdoors.   Beyond the Hundredth Meridian read by Steve Carr     John Wesley Powell was one of the most important Americans who ever lived, yet most folks have never heard of him, writes Bay Weekly columnist, outdoorsman and...
Summer Reading Clubs at Anne Arundel and Calvert county public libraries give you ideas, company and rewards for summer reading. At every branch, clubs start this week for children, teens, families and adults. Each age group reads for prizes as well as pleasure. Anne Arundel County Public Library     Kid readers find book events as well new books each week at the library. Schools with 25 percent participation compete to win the Chesapeake Cup: www.aacpl.net/src11/kids.html....

Take children to the outdoors with these authors who evoke the magic and mystery of the natural world.

For wonder-filled, read-aloud picture books, look for author Jane Yolen. Her Caldecott-winning father-daughter tale, Owl Moon, should not be missed: “When you go owling, you don’t need words or warm or anything but hope.”     Also look for Sacred Places, poems and paintings on 12 magical spots around the world; and Ring of Earth, a child’s book of seasons told through animal-voiced poems.     Local D.C. author Lynne Cherry’s...

For those of Sinatra’s generation, this is a memory walk. For those younger, My Way could make some new Sinatra fans.

Tribute bands of performers impersonating famous artists are in vogue. My Way, now playing at Infinity Theatre, is subtitled “A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra.” But this show is intended as a genuine tribute, not merely an impersonation of Ol’ Blue Eyes. For that, be grateful because it is much more, and it reaches loftier goals.     Four professional singer/actors (all members of Actors’ Equity) take Sinatra songs sung thematically and bring them to...

They’re the best fish around, and this year they’re about the only fish around

The perch I’d hooked stayed deep, which is always a good sign. Big whites (which are mostly black) are reluctant to approach the surface in a battle. The longer it takes to get a glimpse of a whitey on the end of your line, the bigger it usually is. The scrapper I had on was giving all the signs of being a good one. Fishfinder     Look to the Eastern Shore from Love Point and south for the better bite on rockfish. Chumming with ground menhaden and fishing cut bait back...