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In its 4th year, the Annapolis Irish Festival draws an ever-larger crowd seeking Celtic music and heritage

Two past winners illustrate the magic of make-believe

Creativity comes out to play in Twin Beach Players’ Kids
Playwriting Festival

Talent Machine’s young actors are rehearsing for life

Summer’s darlings, winter’s pests

Fish recipes from the Chesapeake

See and feel what inspired Francis Scott Key

Every American knows the story of Francis Scott Key watching the bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore, then penning the Star Spangled Banner as dawn broke to reveal the Stars and Stripes still flying proudly over the fort. He watched the battle from a prime harbor seat: a British war ship on which he was detained.     You can be in the same spot Key was 200 years ago and gaze at the flag flying over the fort just as he did. Of course, it’s not the exact same flag,...

June 13’s full moon brings the living dinosaurs to a beach near you

The Atlantic Flyway bird migration route passes over Chesapeake Bay. In the months of May and June, the full moon brings bright light to the sandy shores of the Bay, enticing horseshoe crabs to come and lay their eggs. These eggs mean new generations in more ways than one. Some develop into new crabs; migrating shore birds drop into the café to devour many others.     At dawn during May’s full moon, horseshoe crabs made shallow lumps in the surf at Sandy Point Park...

In Their Own Words

During my soccer games, my dad yells my name a lot. That makes me play harder. He likes things very neat, and naturally I’m kind of messy. So I’ve learned that being clean is really the better way. If I don’t get good grades, I usually get grounded. It’s happened before. Not good.     I don’t like it in the moment when he’s correcting me. But looking back, it’s definitely helped me become a better man.     But after I...

Beckerman kicked his way from Crofton to Salt Lake to Brazil

The world’s sport takes the world’s stage next week when World Cup play begins in Brazil.     Played every four years, the World Cup is the most-watched and admired sporting event on the planet. This year, Anne Arundel County has a favorite son in the play. Crofton-raised Kyle Beckerman, a 31-year-old defensive midfielder for the United States Men’s National Team and captain of Real Salt Lake, prepares to lace up his cleats and play for all the world to see....

River sneakers step into history

After 27 years, Bernie Fowler got a new suit of clothes for his 2014 Patuxent River Wade In.     “It’s a historical day. For 27 years now, I’ve waded in tattered tennis shoes,” the 90-year-old Patuxent River champion and retired Maryland senator told his crowd of followers assembled under a striped marquee on a perfect June Sunday.     Then he handed the tattered sneakers to Sherrod Sturrock, deputy director of Calvert Marine Museum. Straw...

Pluck off wilted flowers

For more abundant flowers on your rhododendrons and mountain laurels next year, deadhead this year’s flowers as soon as they wilt. By preventing the flowers from setting seeds, you’ll stimulate the branches to flush new growth from waiting latent buds. This is especially true if the bushes are growing in full sun.       Producing seeds requires considerable energy. Removing wilted florets allows more energy produced by photosynthesis to stimulate the vegetative...

It’s a matter of angles

June’s full Honey, Mead or Rose Moon falls around midnight Thursday.     All full moons stand opposite the sun. This time of year in the Northern Hemisphere, the sun is at its highest. Conversely, the full moon never climbs more than 20 degrees above the southern horizon. As a result, the moonlight that reaches our eyes cuts through a much thicker swath of earth’s atmosphere than winter’s high moon directly overhead. As it passes through all those clouds...

Sometimes it takes fish to catch fish

Chumming is one of the simplest and most effective methods of getting a limit of rockfish this time of year. The fish have just schooled up and are hungry from spring spawning. Here’s how it worked for me one recent June morning.     I try to be careful when I get a bite when chumming, immediately easing the reel clicker off to eliminate any resistance on the line, thumbing the spool lightly as I remove the rod from its holder and letting the fish run off a bit before...

Actors may flirt with you and filch your food in this frothy romp back in time

With summer comes another season of Molière for moderns, adapted by Tim Mooney and performed by the Annapolis Shakespeare Company in the Courtyard at Reynolds Tavern.     The Schemings of Scapin, playing through July 29, is a frenzied farce in rhyming couplets about well-heeled 17th century fools and their gamesome servants. With a contrived plot about true love and arranged marriages, this play pits fathers against sons while elevating the lowly and poking fun at the idle rich...

Sometimes you need to sit in a dark room with a bunch of strangers and cry

Hazel Lancaster (Shailene Woodley: Divergent) should be dead by now. A 17-year-old with terminal cancer, she has outlived her life expectancy. Because of a delicate condition that affects her lungs and requires her to wear oxygen, she stays home from school.     Fearing depression, Hazel’s mother forces her into a youth cancer support group. The sad stories and over-eager leader drive Hazel to distraction until she meets newcomer Gus (Ansel Elgort: Divergent). Charismatic...