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Cool high-summer recipes from Maryland’s 2014 Buy Local Cookbook

Many local chefs and restaurants are on the bandwagon

Satisfy thirst and more at the Mid-Atlantic Brewsic Festival and Fire Truck Show

Great Spangled Fritillary

Buying local? Try vinegar lulled for five months in a skipjack’s hull

When fishing is good it is very good; When it is bad, it’s still pretty good

Telling the stories of a city at work

  “Oh my Lord, thank you. I never thought I’d live to see this day,” gushed Mrs. Beatrice P. Smith, 89, of Annapolis, after throwing her arms around former President Jimmy Carter on Pleasant Street, just around the corner from — but out of sight of — downtown Annapolis. October 5 was the kind of day that evokes enthusiasm. The 86-year-old former president and his wife Rosalynn Carter were not only visiting the Clay Street neighborhood. They were also bringing...

AAA finds that careful driving has gone to the dogs

  It’s now illegal for Marylanders to drive with their hands on their phone, but according to a AAA study, we’re still likely to fall victim to another driving distraction: our animal companions. The study — a joint effort between AAA and Kurgo Pet Dog Products — polled 1,000 dog owners who have driven with their dogs over the past year. Fifty-nine percent of pet owners admit that travel with their pets distracts them from the job at hand. The trouble arises because...

You’ll love persimmons — once you learn the to eat them

Now that I have returned to the Deale Farmers’ Market Thursdays from 3 to 6pm with persimmons, I get lots of questions: What do you do with persimmons? What do they taste like? The persimmons I grow and sell are the Asian type, almost as large as tomatoes and with very few seeds, if any, depending on seasonal conditions. This year, persimmons have more seeds than usual. Persimmon Pie Dissolve two packages of unflavored gelatin in 1⁄4 cup boiling water. Blend the dissolved...

There’s a lot of life in those old sails yet

The Haughwouth sisters’ parents had passed away, and the boat was long gone, but when their childhood sail resurfaced, Penny and Pixie couldn’t bear throwing it away. Instead they turned it into two jackets. Then they turned it into a business, Sea Fever Gear. Sailors don’t have many options for worn-out sails other than throwing them away. “So many hold onto them,” says Haughwouth, “because they carry an emotional tie. Who owned it before? Where has it been...

Circling earth at more than 17,000 miles an hour, the International Space Station is a fleeting target

  Sharp eyes and a clear view of the west horizon will reveal an ever-so-thin crescent moon emerging from the sun’s glare Friday just after sunset at 8:11. But you’ll also need good timing, as this nascent moon, just a day from new, dips beneath the horizon within 30 minutes of the sun.  Sunset the next night is a minute later, and it reveals the moon 15 degrees higher. Above and to the left shines dazzling Venus. Sunday, the moon and Venus are still only six degrees apart...

Reviewer turns actor in Mrs. California

  It looks a lot easier from the audience.That’s one thing I’ve learned by returning to the stage after years on the reviewing end of community theater. Musical theater and opera were my first loves. Now I am captivated more by non-musicals, because I realize that actors who can’t lean on song and dance to sell their stories are the bravest performers of all. How would I fare, on stage, without my singing voice to pave my way? The opportunity to find out presented itself...

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  What the Mothers Thought Dear Bay Weekly: I can’t thank you and Mrs. Martin enough for allowing our class an opportunity to do this project [How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count the Ways: May 6]. So many parents emailed me about how wonderful they thought it was. Thanks again. –Kathleen Smith, Second Grade Teacher: Arnold Elementary - Celebrating London Town to the Tune of $25,000 Dear Bay Weekly: On behalf of the London Town Foundation, thank you for contributing to our third...

Doug Sisk can’t bear to see anything go to waste

  Doug Sisk can’t stand to see stuff — good, solid, reusable stuff — go into the landfill. He knows firsthand that just about anything can be made into something useful. It just takes creative thinking and handiwork. Like the 40-year-old deck on the circa-1960 ranch house the Sisk family had begun to remodel. “There was nothing wrong with the deck,” says Sisk. “The wood was clean. It wasn’t warped. It wasn’t full of insects. And the builder...

After 21 seasons, native-plant propagator Mary-Stuart Sierra prepares for one final harvest

  Mary-Stuart Sierra walks in peace among rows of potted plants. Shades of green envelop her, as if the plants are watching her watching them. She stops at a lead-root wildflower, an early spring bloomer, and pulls back the petals. She’s looking for the seed pouch, inspecting it for ripeness. “There is only a five-day span that these seeds are collectable,” she says. “Day one they are perfect and ready to be plucked, but by day five they’ve fallen and you have...

Southern Maryland gardens want native yellow river birch

  Arbor Day has just passed, and it’s the season of tree planting. At a recent lecture, one of the planters asked why she was having so much trouble growing white birch trees in her yard. She lamented that she had replaced three in 10 years. Where she came from, she said, white birch trees grew like weeds. I concluded that she came from either New England or from northern New York or Pennsylvania. White birch trees originate in regions of long, cold winters and moderate summers. In...