Shine On!

Shine on!

Coastal Point • Emily Harne

Connor Watson soars down the red carpet at the Night to Shine event at Ocean View Church of Christ on Friday, Feb. 9. For more on the event, turn to page A33.

This Week's News

Millsboro Chamber has a new face

Coastal Point • Maria Counts: Carlene Roche is the new director of operations for the Greater Millsboro Chamber of Commerce. Roche is excited about the growth of business in the community, and is already hard at work on the Chamber’s fireworks celebrations this summer.Coastal Point • Maria Counts: Carlene Roche is the new director of operations for the Greater Millsboro Chamber of Commerce. Roche is excited about the growth of business in the community, and is already hard at work on the Chamber’s fireworks celebrations this summer.Those visiting Millsboro will likely notice the great amount of growth the town is experiencing. With more growth, comes more businesses. Enter Carlene Roche.

Hired last December to serve as the Greater Millsboro Chamber of Commerce’s director of operations, Roche has taken on the role with enthusiasm.

“It’s so nice to be with people, plan events, interact with the businesses,” she said. “It’s nice because it’s a small town. I really do like that part about it. You get to know everybody. The people you see in the bank, in the restaurants — they’re all Chamber members.”

Roche moved to the area from Connecticut, where she was born and raised.

“I grew up there and lived there until 2012, when we moved to the eastern shore because my husband took a job with Perdue agribusiness,” she said. “I like it! It did take me a little while to get used to it. It’s very flat, and Connecticut is all rolling hills. But I do like it, I love the weather. It’s about 10 degrees warmer than it is in Connecticut at any given time, and a lot less snow.”

Bethany looks at replenishment and umbrellas

With warm spring-like weather starting to make seemingly random appearances in the area this week, thoughts have begun to turn to preparations for the summer season in Bethany Beach. But there’s a key element that’s still up in the air: When will Bethany’s beach replenishment project start, and will it impact its vital summer season?

Selbyville to get water boost from Artesian

Taking a shower with low water pressure is annoying. Fighting a fire with low water pressure is life-threatening.

This summer, the Town of Selbyville will boost water pressure and prepare for future growth by purchasing water from Artesian Water Company.

Tech student racks up service-academy nominations

Alex AngellAlex AngellWhen Alex Angell was a youngster at Lord Baltimore Elementary School, he wrote a letter to his older self.

‘Did you attend the U.S. Naval Academy?’ he asked his future self.

Now a senior at Sussex Technical High School, he’s hoping to make that childhood dream come true. This spring, Angell (pronounced like the heavenly creature) earned the most service academy nominations of any Delaware student from among the nominations made by U.S. Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons and U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester.

Students need distinguished nominations — typically from a federal legislator — to be eligible for the likes of West Point or the U.S. Naval Academy.

He hasn’t officially been accepted yet, but Angell nailed the first hurdle by earning nominations to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis (from Carper); U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs (from Blunt Rochester and Carper); and the U.S. Military Academy in West Point (also from Blunt Rochester and Carper). He is also an alternate nominee for Coons. Additionally, all three legislators nominated him to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point.

County approves loan documents for sports complex

The Sussex County Council voted on Tuesday to approve loan documents related to a $1.5 million loan to the Sussex Sports Complex’s backing foundation.

Attorneys continue investigating Mountaire’s ‘upset’

Another meeting held to discuss public health

As Mountaire waits for a sludge-removal permit, area attorneys have begun investigating the potential impacts of Mountaire’s wastewater treatment failure on the surrounding community.

Local family donates 160 acres to organization for preservation

In honor of their late mother, the children of Nancy Smoot have donated 160 acres of land on the edge of the Great Cypress Swamp to the Delaware Wild Lands conservancy organization.

Mental and behavioral health forum gives residents a voice

One might think all of Sussex County was at the Georgetown Public Library last Thursday night, as the upstairs meeting room, overwhelmed to standing-room-only, hosted a forum on mental and behavioral health.

What’s the deal with HOAs?

Hocker and Gray to host information session

When people buy a new house in community with a homeowner’s association, they may sign documents without a full understanding of what’s to come. That’s something local officials are aiming to address in an upcoming workshop.

South Bethany photography sought for Art in the Hall

Whether they’re professional photographers or proud amateurs, the Town of South Bethany is now welcoming the town’s residents, property owners and their families to enter the Second Annual Art in the Hall photography exhibit.

Sussex Technical School District on the lookout for superintendent

The Sussex Technical School District is now accepting applications for the position of superintendent.

Sussex Technical School District on the lookout for superintendent

The Sussex Technical School District is now accepting applications for the position of superintendent.

Point of No Return — There is no one answer. But we have to talk

The 1893 world fair in Chicago (officially known as the “World’s Columbian Exposition”) was organized as a celebration to recognize the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus discovering the New World. While the world’s eyes were on Chicago, Dr. Henry Howard Holmes — known as H.H. Holmes — was busy murdering people in his “World’s Fair Hotel” a few miles away.

Letters to the Editor — Feb. 23, 2018

AARP chapter walks the walk with efforts

Editor:

AARP’s Chapter #5226 Community Service Committee has asked members and the community to contribute to causes such as:

• “Dollars for Coats” — collected $735 at our luncheons for coats for John Clayton Elementary School children;

Salon collects gently-used toiletries for women’s shelter

Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Even gently-used toiletries can give women a fresh boost of confidence at local domestic-abuse shelters.Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Even gently-used toiletries can give women a fresh boost of confidence at local domestic-abuse shelters.For many people, hairstyling without a blow-dryer would be the start of a very long day.

But a woman escaping an abusive relationship is more likely to be thinking about her children and herself, not the styling tools. If she’s lucky, she has time to pack some clothes before dashing to a shelter.

So, All About U salon and spa in Millville is collecting gently-used beauty products and tools for the People’s Place domestic-abuse shelters in Sussex County.

“It’s really just something to make the women feel valued,” said salon owner Rebecca Chandler. “They don’t have hairbrushes, or they don’t have curling irons. I know how valued it makes me feel and my clients feel to take care of ourselves.”

What can people do with excess beauty products sitting in bathroom cabinets — the hotel samples, not-quite-right hair product or unwanted Christmas soaps? Chandler will take all of it.

“It’s something we all have, and you don’t know what to do with it,” Chandler said. “It’s like a salon recycling program. And it’s a need.”

In just the first week, they had received a pile of items, from basic shampoos to high-end perfumes.

“We’ll sanitize all the bottles. … We’ll also [check] that it’s fit to give somebody. The ladies at the shelter said, when the women arrive, they basically have nothing,” Chandler said.

Robot Wars: Teams from IR schools advance to world championship

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Teamwork is essential to rack up points for, from left, John M. Clayton Elementary School’s Macy Kauffman and Chloe Allen of Team Run JMC 2, and Kai Kelley and Simon Schoenhaar of Lord Baltimore Elementary School Team A.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Teamwork is essential to rack up points for, from left, John M. Clayton Elementary School’s Macy Kauffman and Chloe Allen of Team Run JMC 2, and Kai Kelley and Simon Schoenhaar of Lord Baltimore Elementary School Team A.Students stepped up to the ring for the regional Vex IQ Challenge on Feb. 17 in Georgetown.

In all, 21 teams represented seven schools from the Indian River School District and Salisbury, Md. All year, the elementary and middle school teams have worked to design, program and build Vex IQ robots that complete various tasks.

After making a rockstar entrance to the gymnasium, teams lined up to either begin competition, two at a time, or troubleshoot their bots between rounds.

They scored points individually and by partnering with other teams in a 4-by-8-foot playing field, to test their skills in driving, teamwork and problem-solving. Points are awarded for lifting, stacking and pushing plastic rings into a scoring zone.

Sussex Riptide athletes gain strength

Coastal Point • Shaun Lambert: SODE athletes from the Sussex Riptide are getting in their strength training at Sea Colony.Coastal Point • Shaun Lambert: SODE athletes from the Sussex Riptide are getting in their strength training at Sea Colony.Local athletes from the Special Olympics Delaware (SODE) Sussex Riptide are working hard to become better athletes by doing strength training every week at Sea Colony.

“I watched all the athletes when they were performing in their sports, and they all had weak core body,” said one of group’s coaches, Tony Gough. “They didn’t have the core they needed to do the sport. So, I decided we should train them to get them a stronger core body so they could do better in whatever sport they took.”

Gough, who also serves as one of the group’s cycling coaches, said all athletes are welcome to attend the weekly strength-training session, which starts out with stretching and moves on to machines.

“All of them are stronger,” he said of the improvements he’s seen. “They had weak upper body and weak core body, so it was just a matter of focusing on those areas.”

Field hockey coaches work to develop programs

Coastal Point • Bruce C. Walls: Indian River High School field hockey coach Molly Chamberlin is working with young field hockey players to try to pass along a love of the sport, and to build a strong feeder program for the high school.title=Coastal Point • Bruce C. Walls: Indian River High School field hockey coach Molly Chamberlin is working with young field hockey players to try to pass along a love of the sport, and to build a strong feeder program for the high school.Molly Chamberlin graduated from Indian River High School in 2007. Her time at IR included three years on the school’s highly respected varsity field hockey team, which went 10-5 her senior year.

That fall, Chamberlin enrolled in the University of Delaware, majoring in health and physical education. After graduating from U.D., Chamberlin returned to her Sussex County roots, and began teaching and coaching field hockey at Selbyville Middle School.

In addition to her work at Selbyville Middle School, she also worked as an assistant coach for IRHS field hockey coach Jodi Stone. But returning to her old team was disappointing. The 10-5 team she had left four years prior was now struggling to hold onto a 5-8-2 season.

After talking with Sussex Central High School field hockey coach Karen Irvin, Chamberlin discovered that both teams were struggling to keep players and the ones who did show up for practice were inexperienced.

Pickleball Points: The one pickleball shot you must improve

No doubt, your own error analysis will highlight how many errors you make from the forehand side. Why? Because you just naturally hit more shots with your forehand and you naturally will make more errors. So, since 60 percent or more of all the shots you hit are forehands, at least get your forehand perfected.

Optimists award 2018 essay prizes

The Sussex County Optimist Club kicked off its first season with a youth essay contest. Nearly 60 area high-schoolers participated.

The winners were, first place, Claudia Carey, a senior at Sussex Academy of Arts & Sciences; second place, Curstyn Dutton, a junior at Sussex Academy; and third place, Olivia Tancredi, a senior at Cape Henlopen High School.

Optimists arrive in Sussex County, meet in Georgetown

Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Three local students won scholarships for their essays on respect, including, from left to right, Olivia Tancredi, third place, Claudia Carey, first place, and Curstyn Dutton, second place.Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Three local students won scholarships for their essays on respect, including, from left to right, Olivia Tancredi, third place, Claudia Carey, first place, and Curstyn Dutton, second place.The Sussex County Optimist Club was founded barely six months ago, but they’re already making their mark in the community as they envision a brighter future.

“Our mission is to provide hope and positive vision, bringing out the best in our youth, our communities and ourselves,” said Connie Sohnleiter, president.

She founded the club last autumn after participating in a Pennsylvania branch of Optimist International for more than 20 years before moving to Lewes. The club was made official on Nov. 7, 2017.

So far, they’ve made big strides in their goals of fundraising, mentoring local youth and starting a Junior Optimist International (JOI) Club at Cape Henlopen High School.

“So, it’s just working with kids — whether it’s through schools, through the agencies, whatever. Just bringing out the best in kids,” said Adele James, a member and former educator.

As a native Sussex Countian, James is encouraging the club to expand to address needs on the less-affluent western side of Delaware, where she said there are more at-risk kids and more need.

“I was in education for 33 years, so I was aware of the issues,” she said.

Bethany Ropewalk receives liquor license

The Ropewalk restaurant location in Bethany Beach, now under construction on Garfield Parkway, received approval of its liquor license on Tuesday, Feb. 13, after a nearly two-hour hearing before the state’s Office of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commissioner.

New commercial center under construction in Ocean View

Special to the Coastal Point • Submitted : A rendition of the planned commercial center coming to Ocean View.Special to the Coastal Point • Submitted : A rendition of the planned commercial center coming to Ocean View.Those who drive Route 26 in Ocean View with any frequency may have noticed that the white craftsman-style home on the northwest corner of Atlantic Avenue (Route 26) and Woodland Avenue is no longer standing. The house was removed at the end of January in preparation for construction of a commercial center.

The property has been in the Archut family for more than 100 years, first purchased by Dianne Archut’s great-grandfather Charles Johnson.

He “built the house on it in the early 1920s,” said Russell Archut, Dianne Archut’s husband. “He lived there until he passed away. Then it was passed down to Diane’s mom, and Diane’s mom and dad rented it for a while. Numerous people lived there… school teachers that taught at LB used to rent a room there. Then it was some general renters.”

Archut and his wife moved into the home in 1978, and the family lived there until 2003.

Their son Brenton was born in Milford, he said, “and was brought home to that house.”

Valor Awards recognize the work of local first-responders

Coastal Point • Susan C. Lyons: The winners of the Joshua M. Freeman Valor Awards get together for a group photo following the event.Coastal Point • Susan C. Lyons: The winners of the Joshua M. Freeman Valor Awards get together for a group photo following the event.“Valor is the demonstration of boldness and bravery in the face of adversity and danger. In our communities, it is our first-responders who sacrifice their own time and often their safety in order to protect the lives of others,” said Patti Grimes, the executive director of Carl M. Freeman and Joshua M. Freeman foundations, at the 14th Annual Joshua M. Freeman Valor Awards.

The award ceremony, hosted by the Carl M. Freeman Companies with the help of the Bethany-Fenwick Chamber of Commerce, gets its name from Josh Freeman, who served as a Green Beret.

“Hosting the Valor Awards is a privilege for our Chamber, allowing us the opportunity to give thanks for all that our first-responders do in support of our Chamber businesses, communities, and signature events and initiatives we host each year,” said Lauren Weaver, the Chamber’s executive director.

All those recognized at the Feb. 9 luncheon at the Den at Bear Trap Dunes were nominated by their own departments, and received a plaque and gift card to Hocker’s from Beebe Healthcare.

Selbyville incumbents retain seats with no new challengers

The Town of Selbyville has canceled its 2018 town council elections due to lack of challengers.

Longtime incumbents Richard Duncan Sr. and Jay Murray both filed for re-election, and there were no other candidates. Their terms will begin in March and will last two years.

The election was originally scheduled for March 3.

Once again, coastal towns oppose drilling, seismic testing

Public can still submit comments

People are turning their voices toward Washington, D.C., as the U.S. Department of the Interior eyes the Atlantic Ocean for potential oil and gas drilling activities.

Public comments are now being accepted on the National Outer Continental Shelf Oil & Gas Leasing Program for 2019-2024.

Editorial — Awards show reminds us how fortunate we are

For the 14th year, the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce and Carl M. Freeman Companies put on the Joshua M. Freeman Valor Awards, recognizing superlative performances by first-responders in our community.

And, for the 14th year, the presentation stole our collective breath.

Letters to the Editor — Feb. 16, 2018

Reader calls for citizen involvement

Editor:

Are you opposed to offshore drilling for oil and gas? Don’t think it can’t happen here. Haven’t decided but want to know more? Please join the 38th Rep. District’s Environmental Committee on Tuesday, Feb. 20, from 6:30-8 at the South Coastal Library, Meeting Room B. All are welcome.

Civil War Profiles — A Civil War trip of a lifetime, Part 6

After leaving the Pea Ridge National Military Park in Arkansas, our route on this Civil War journey in October 1995 headed southeast out of the Ozark Mountains to Little Rock. Traveling across the Mississippi River, we entered Tennessee at the bustling city of Memphis — having driven 350 miles since leaving Pea Ridge.

DHSS reports 1,200 new flu cases in a week, death toll rises to 11

NCC reports first death without underlying conditions

If anything can slow this flu season down, it’s vaccines and good handwashing. Prevention is considered more important than ever, as the Delaware Department of Health & Social Services (DHSS) is rapidly updating its flu toll and on Wednesday confirmed the state’s 11th influenza-related death this flu season.

Tower 3 a beacon in state park’s economic contributions

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Tower 3, located south of Dewey Beach in Delaware Seashore State Park, took on a cobalt-drenched tone during a lighting ceremony on Monday, Feb. 12.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Tower 3, located south of Dewey Beach in Delaware Seashore State Park, took on a cobalt-drenched tone during a lighting ceremony on Monday, Feb. 12.Against the backdrop of a spectacular sunset, a World War II observation tower became a dramatically lighted landmark on Monday, Feb. 12, while state officials touted the results of a study showing the equally dramatic impact of Delaware’s state parks on its economy.

The addition of cobalt-blue lighting to Tower 3, located just south of Dewey Beach in Delaware Seashore State Park, signals the next step in the restoration of the tower, one of 11 built along the Delaware coast between 1939 and 1942. The towers were used to track enemy vessels off the coast. Using triangulation to plot the ship’s location, observers then transmitted the information to Fort Miles, now part of Cape Henlopen State Park, where the readings were plotted on a large map.

Using that information, large guns at Fort Miles could then be aimed in the direction of the ships. The guns — with 6-inch, 12-inch and 16-inch barrels — could fire 2,700-pound shells 25 miles. But the guns were never fired at an enemy ship.

Currently, only Tower 7 at Cape Henlopen, which sits next to Fort Miles, is open to the public. Once the restoration of Tower 3 is complete, plans include opening it to the general public as well, with interpretive tours available. Eventually, the Delaware Shore Preservation Foundation hopes to also open Tower 1 in Fenwick Island State Park and Tower 2 in North Bethany.

Curran taking readers to Africa in new book

Coastal Point • Submitted Photo: ‘On to Africa’ is the second installment in local writer Walter Curran’s series about a young Merchant Marine who travels the world on a cargo ship.Coastal Point • Submitted Photo: ‘On to Africa’ is the second installment in local writer Walter Curran’s series about a young Merchant Marine who travels the world on a cargo ship.While many know him as the mayor of Ocean View, Walter Curran has lived what might seem like 10 different lives. And, for those who love to read, he’s put those experiences in a series of books, with his latest story focusing on Africa.

“It’s great. I love writing, and I even enjoy the editing, because it’s a learning process for me,” he said.

Following that love, Curran recently published the second installment of his three-part “Young Mariners” series — “On to Africa.”

The series follows the life of William Connolly, a street kid from South Boston, as he embarks on his first job as a third-mate on the cargo ship the MorMacPride. The books are loosely based on adventures Curran and his shipmates had while they were in the Merchant Marines.

Milford Buccaneers pin IR wrestlers’ tournament hopes

Special to the Coastal Point • Susan Taylor-Walls: Indian River came up short in their quest for a state championship, falling to five-time champion Milford in their semifinal match in Smyrna on Saturday, Feb. 10.Special to the Coastal Point • Susan Taylor-Walls: Indian River came up short in their quest for a state championship, falling to five-time champion Milford in their semifinal match in Smyrna on Saturday, Feb. 10.Indian River High School wrestlers received a No. 2 seed in the DIAA Division II state dual tournament held last Saturday at Smyrna High School’s gym. IR had the first-round bye, facing in the semifinals Milford High School’s Buccaneers, who were seeking their fifth-straight DIAA Division II title.

Milford quickly showed the Indians why they are the five-time title winners.

The Buccaneers pinned their first three Indians opponents, starting with sophomore Will Keller in the 160-pound class. IR junior Zimmerman (170 pounds) was the next Indian pinned, followed by senior Collin Donaway in the 180-pound class. Junior Zach Schultz stopped the Buccaneers’ first run with a decision at 195 pounds. IR senior Brock Wingate lost the 220-pound class by decision.

Sophomore Raymond “Bam” Turner slammed his 285-pound Buccaneer opponent to the mat and quickly pinned him. Freshman Ian Shaubach lost a 25-14 decision at 106 pounds, and sophomore Will Rayne lost 25-14 at 113 pounds.

IR swimmers make podium finishes at conference championships

Special to the Coastal Point • Susan Taylor-Walls: Indian River swimmers fared well in the Henlopen Conference championships on Saturday, Feb. 9.Special to the Coastal Point • Susan Taylor-Walls: Indian River swimmers fared well in the Henlopen Conference championships on Saturday, Feb. 9.Athletes from the Indian River High School swim team competed against 10 teams during the Henlopen Conference swimming championships last Saturday at the Sussex Academy pool in Georgetown. Sophomore Joshua McIntire led IR with two first-place finishes, including a record-setting 500 freestyle time of 4:57.86 that was 10 seconds faster than the previous record.

“I was kind of out of it. I wasn’t feeling good,” described McIntire. “But I was able to use my training to hold onto my first place, and that was about it.”

McIntire also won the 200 individual-medley (IM) event. His seed time was 2:06.01, and for the top of the podium, his time was 2:04.16.

Junior Michael Barnes had two podium finishes. Barnes was second-fastest in the 100 freestyle and third in the 200 freestyle. In the men’s 100 freestyle, his seed time was 52.39. When it counted, Barnes cut through the water in 51.90 seconds. Barnes dialed in a seed time of 1:57.11 in the men’s 200 freestyle. Then, in the final, he covered the distance in 1:57.35.

IR wrestlers come up short against Laurel in final match of season

DII No. 2 team falls in semi-finals to tourney champs Milford

Special to the Coastal Point • Bruce C. Walls: The Indians came up short in their match against Laurel on Wednesday, Feb. 7.Special to the Coastal Point • Bruce C. Walls: The Indians came up short in their match against Laurel on Wednesday, Feb. 7.Laurel High School’s Bulldogs wrestling team came to Indian River High School on Wednesday, Feb. 7, (after Coastal Point press time), and after several hours of grueling bouts, the Bulldogs ended up taking a 37-28 bite of Indians hide home with them. The loss dropped the Indians’ season record to 16-5, while Laurel improved to 6-2.

“We wrestled a good team. They came ready to wrestle. Our kids came ready to wrestle. We just came out on the wrong side of the scoreboard,” said IR head wrestling coach Jeff Windish.

“I think my kids wrestled well,” he added. “We definitely have some things that we need to work on in two days to get ready for the state duels on Saturday. Like I told them in the wrestle room — you didn’t change the outcome of your season, you just changed your seed.

“We’re going to get another chance at them Saturday, hopefully,” Windish said, “so we have things to clean up and go back to work.”

IR boys’ basketball shoots down Sussex Academy 77-43

Special to the Coastal Point • Susan Taylor-Walls: Calvin James goes up strong for two points against Sussex Academy on Friday, Feb. 9.Special to the Coastal Point • Susan Taylor-Walls: Calvin James goes up strong for two points against Sussex Academy on Friday, Feb. 9.Indian River High School’s boys’ basketball team hosted and easily defeated a much younger Sussex Academy team 77-43 last Friday night, Feb. 9.

The 11-6 Indians team was certain enough that they could handle the 1-15 Seahawks that some of IR’s starters told their head coach, B. J. Joseph, they wanted to let some of the players who don’t get as much time on the floor start the first quarter and then let the usual starters finish the game in the second half.

“We still had to play our game. We couldn’t play around with this team,” said IR junior Jamier Felton, who had 17 points for the Indians. “They do play to their potential, and we had to play to ours.

“We started off slow,” Felton said. “We let the other guys who don’t get much time out there to play. We allowed them to start tonight to show we care for them and their sportsmanship on and off the court. Then, when the starters took over, we blew the game out. It was a great win.

Pickleball Points: Kathy Casey and First State Pickleball Club

Coastal Point • Submitted Photo: Mixed-doubles partners Dianne Milam and Rick Bell, gold medal winners, warm up prior to one of their matches.Coastal Point • Submitted Photo: Mixed-doubles partners Dianne Milam and Rick Bell, gold medal winners, warm up prior to one of their matches.Now that First State Pickleball Club has grown to almost 500 members, I was curious as to what plans might await the pickleball community. There were just a couple dozen members only three years ago.

Besides running First State Pickleball Club as a volunteer, President Kathy Casey maintains a fulltime job, so it was a rarity last week when she had a cancelation and could sit down for an hour.

We met at a coffee shop, and my first question was, “Why should I send my $25 check to First State Pickleball Club for the 2018 year?”

“In 2018,” she said, “we anticipate pickleball, the fastest growing sport in America, will continue to explode here as well, and we will continue to organize throughout the year periodic weekend events, such as social and competitive round-robins for our members.

ABC hearing the next step for Ropewalk in Bethany

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Ropewalk’s new 325-seat location in Bethany Beach is slated for a June opening.­Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Ropewalk’s new 325-seat location in Bethany Beach is slated for a June opening.­After expanding their restaurant from Baltimore to the Delmarva shore in 2013, the owners of Ropewalk have since set out to establish themselves in downtown Bethany Beach, constructing what will be a brand new 325-seat location one block off the beach at 107 Garfield Parkway, formerly the location of Fish Tales, which has moved across the street.

County continues work to update zoning code

As it works to update the county’s zoning code, the Sussex County Council this week reviewed some of the areas recommended for updates, with plans to hold public hearings on the amendments as they are introduced.

Insurance commissioner opens office in Georgetown

Coastal Point • Maria Counts: The Delaware Department of Insurance recently opened up a new office in Georgetown.Coastal Point • Maria Counts: The Delaware Department of Insurance recently opened up a new office in Georgetown.Those seeking help from the Delaware Department of Insurance no longer have to drive an hour away to speak with someone in person, as the department just opened its first offices in Sussex County.

“Almost two-thirds of walk-in visitors to our Kent County office are from Sussex County, and the majority of them are seniors,” said Commissioner Trinidad Navarro. “I’m excited that we are now able to help them closer to their home.”

Located on the Circle in Georgetown, the office will be open to the public Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

“We saw the possibility of what a beautiful place this could be — I’m so proud to give folks who live right here in Sussex County,” he said.

Navarro said the new office came, in large part, thanks to House Bill 77, which addressed the issue of citizen accessibility to be able to speak with department personnel locally by opening a Department of Insurance office in Sussex County.

Navarro said the department has been working on many things, including workers’ compensation rates.

“Last year, workers’ compensation insurance went up 0 percent, which is great news for business owners… It was a big deal to have a 0-percent rate increase, but I said that wasn’t good enough,” he said.

Fenwick juggling commercial parking rules again

Parking is no easy feat in Fenwick Island during the summers. Any business able to succeed might run out of parking in its regular lot and could have to get creative.

But the Fenwick Island Town Council is trying to get a handle on things, and historically, they have not wanted cars migrating too far from the businesses their drivers are supposed to be patronizing.

Community asked to participate in mental health, addiction forums

Each day, more than 246 Americans die from suicide or a drug overdose in the United States. One in five Americans will experience a mental illness this year, half of which will result in a substance-use disorder.