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Favorites from 2019

A family is torn apart and glued back together by grief
Valuable lessons from Bay Weekly ­Christmases past

New fee aligns with other national parks

Surely they deserve an exclamation point!

     Some butterflies overwinter as fully winged adults. Somehow they manage to find a spot to hide and not freeze or have their wings damaged.       Two species, the question mark and comma butterflies, both are known to overwinter. They are quite similar to each other in other ways, as well.       They share a unique appetite for the juices of decay. Rotten fruit, decaying fungus, dung and carrion are what they prefer to feed on. When they...

Mary Kilbourne: 1936-2019

     Ask Mary Kilbourne’s friends and former students what they remember about her, you’ll hear about banding birds, seining a pond to find water scorpions, the latest Envirothon or leading Cub Scouts on a trek through the woods — and underlying it all her passion for wildlife, nature and the earth. She was a naturalist and an enthusiastic protector of local rivers and natural spaces, testifying against development of dwindling wooded spaces.    ...

USPS is big-footing our place names into oblivion

     Bristol is a town barely in Anne Arundel County. It’s also barely clinging to an identity as a town, if the U.S. Postal Service has its way.     The name Bristol is recognized as authoritative in the county’s southwestern corner by most maps, by the U.S. and Maryland Geological Surveys, by the Maryland Department of Planning, by countless county databases and by the Maryland State Highway Administration’s maps and big green highway signs.  ...

Nature provides the raw materials

      The traditional Christmas colors of red and green mimic the reds and greens in nature this time of year, specifically, the holly trees that bear their red jewels of berry clusters against their evergreen foliage. Their evergreen nature has long represented life everlasting.       I like to fashion a Christmas wreath made from dried flowers and herbs from my garden. This allows me to make it early in the season and enjoy its beauty through the holidays...

When the fish aren’t biting, raptors may be soaring

     The eagle appeared as if from nowhere. I had been casting lures fruitlessly for white perch, but it was a beautiful day. The sun was shining, there was just the slightest of breezes and the temperatures were nicely bearable. Though there were no fish in my bucket, I grudgingly persevered.       Then for no reason, I looked up. Overhead soared a giant bird, its white head and tail contrasting with the dark feathers of its powerful body. A perch, roughly 14...
Can a dysfunctional family find a murderer before they kill each other? 
      Renowned mystery writer Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) gathers his family to celebrating his birthday. There’s cake, drinking and an argument. The next morning, Harlan is dead, lying in a pool of blood with his throat slashed.        The family insists it was suicide.        But investigator Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) isn’t so sure. As he picks through the happenings at the party, he finds more suspects than he...

Broadway comes to Bowie

       A Christmas Carol the Musical ran each holiday season on Broadway from 1994 until 2003. With music, lyrics and choreography by Broadway and movie legends Alan Menken, Lynn Ahrens and Susan Stroman, it was a crowd-pleasing can’t-miss spectacle, full of humor and heart. It would be silly to expect Broadway spectacle to transfer to the community theater stage; still, 2nd Star Productions’ version holds tight to the show’s humor and heart.   ...
The Season’s Bounty is at your fingertips
     As we edge into the winter holidays, I’m all for celebrating. Bring on the lights: stock up on candles, lay the fire, untangle the strands. Unbox your household icons. Gather the evergreens. Touch up the season’s grayscale with highlights of red and green.     Mother Nature deserves a rest, and she is going to sleep. All the liveliness we’ll get this time of year depends on us. Fortunately, it’s a challenge many of us are up to.  ...

Holiday shop now open at Bunting Online Auctions

      Like the Ireland boys you read about last week [Teens Donate 4-H Hog to Charity:  http://www.bayweekly.com/node/51320 ], more Chesapeake Country kids are using what’s close at hand to lend a helping hand.          A holiday store run by children is now open at Bunting Online Auctions in Dunkirk. Proceeds from the shop will benefit Project Echo, a non-profit that provides shelter to the homeless in southern Maryland...

Rotary accepts grant requests thru Nov. 30

      Crabbing has slowed down for the season, but the benefits of this bounty are still being felt.          Funds raised at the Rotary Club of Annapolis’ giant annual crab feast are now available for organizations that support the local community. If you’re a local non-profit and in need of funds, consider applying for a Crab Feast grant.          Splitting last year’s $45,000...