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‘The Baron’ to host pickleball demo at Sea Colony

Coastal Point • File Photo: A pickleballer goes for a backhand during a tournament last summer in Sea Colony.Coastal Point • File Photo: A pickleballer goes for a backhand during a tournament last summer in Sea Colony.The Fitness Center at Sea Colony is helping local pickleball players beat the cold this winter, offering a variety of sessions at their indoor facilities through March.

While the sessions are open to both residents and non-residents of Sea Colony, and to pickleball players of all skill levels, the facility will amp things up with an introductory demo this Wednesday, Jan. 18, hosted by none other than Vaughn “The Baron” Baker of the First State Pickleball Club (FSPC).

“We’re doing this so people can enjoy themselves during the winter,” said Sea Colony Assistant Fitness Manager Michael Pitts, who gave the sport a try himself this winter. “Everyone that has walked by that and seen it going on has jumped in and had a great time. It’s just a lot of fun and it’s a great facility perfect facility for this game.”

‘Slam Dunk’ announces 2017 return, All-Tournament Team

Sanford’s Davis makes the cut as a freshman

Coastal Point • Submitted: Sanford freshman Jyare Davis posts up for a jumper during the Slam Dunk to the Beach tournament. Davis was the only player for Delaware to make the All-Tournament Team.Coastal Point • Submitted: Sanford freshman Jyare Davis posts up for a jumper during the Slam Dunk to the Beach tournament. Davis was the only player for Delaware to make the All-Tournament Team.After reemerging in 2013 from a 10-year hiatus, the Delaware Sports Commission (DSC) announced last week that the Slam Dunk to the Beach basketball tournament will once again make its return come December of 2017, for what will be the event’s fifth consecutive year.

Last month, more than 12,000 basketball fans from across the country showed up at Cape Henlopen High School in Lewes for a chance to witness some of the nation’s top talent go head-to-head during a three-day tournament spanning from Tuesday, Dec. 27, to Thursday, Dec. 29.

“The atmosphere was electric, and the house was packed,” said DSC Chairman Matthew Robinson. “We are thrilled with this year’s turnout and the continued support of our sponsors, fans and community. The event was another ‘slam dunk’ for the state of Delaware.”

While past Slam Dunk standouts include NBA stars such as Carmello Anthony (2000), LeBron James (2001), Kevin Durant (2003) and Dwight Howard (2003), this year’s lineup of potential future NBA talent was headlined by several ESPN100-ranked prospects, including Mohamed Bamba from Westtown High School in Pennsylvania.

As the nation’s top-ranked uncommitted senior, the 6-foot, 11-inch center led Westtown to a 70-68 victory over Gray Collegiate Academy of South Carolina on the first night of the tournament, personally finishing with 27 points while pulling down 13 rebounds and managing the game-winning layup just before the buzzer.

Bamba went on to earn All-Tournament Team honors, along with five other out-of-state players, who included Collin Gillespie (Archbishop Wood), Jalek Felton (Gray Collegiate Academy), De’Vondre Perry (Baltimore Poly), Jeremy Roach (Paul VI) and Keith Williams (Bishop Laughlin).

Exercise and weight loss are keys to a new you in 2017

With every new year come resolutions to get in shape and lose weight. Will this be the year that you stick to your guns and make it happen? Let’s look at why this year a new you could make a world of difference in your health and quality of life.

Extra Points – January 13, 2016

IR wrestling off to 1-0 start with dual-meet win over Laurel

While there’s been plenty of tournament action for the Indian River High School wrestling team already this season, the Indians kicked off their first dual meet of the season with a 54-17 win over Laurel on Wednesday, Jan. 4.

Winter is a busy season for birdfeeding aficionados

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: A cardinal sits at a bird feeder in Camden-Wyoming.Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: A cardinal sits at a bird feeder in Camden-Wyoming.The other day, my 3-year-old grandson, Samuel, and I were filling our birdfeeders when my son-in-law asked if we really expected birds to come use them at this time of the year. At first I thought, why ask such a silly question? But after I thought a little bit about it, I realized that it wasn’t such a silly question.

Many people remember being taught that birds fly south for the winter. Also, if you don’t have birdfeeders up, you will see fewer birds during the winter months. However, if you have birdfeeders up and keep them cleaned and filled, you will have lots of birds visiting your yard.

Many birds eat bugs and, at this time of year, many bugs go into dormant states. Other birds eat seeds, and plants also go into dormant states at this time of year, resulting in less seeds for the birds to eat.

Honored a lifetime later: Civil War veterans receive tribute

Coastal Point • Submitted: Glenn Layton kneels at the grave of a distant cousin, William Layton.Coastal Point • Submitted: Glenn Layton kneels at the grave of a distant cousin, William Layton.Thousands of soldiers died in the Civil War. But those who survived also hold a special place in history. Now, the Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War hope to recognize the gravesites of every Civil War veteran buried in Delaware.

Nearly two years into their mission, the Lt. Col. David L. Stricker Camp #64 has placed nearly 200 small, star-shaped markers at veteran graves.

“We’re trying to identify every soldier in the state that fought for the state of Delaware in that war but does not have any recognition on their stone,” said volunteer Dan Cowgill. “When we find them, we place a marker.”

This November, they honored two veterans at Red Men’s Cemetery in Selbyville: William Layton (1841-1920) and Robert B. Carey (1829-1902). Both men were buried alongside their wives.

IRSD's Bunting tapped to become state's top legislator

Dr. Susan BuntingDr. Susan BuntingThe Indian River School District may be sending another education leader to the state level. This time, it’s for the big chair.

IRSD Superintendent Susan Bunting is to be nominated for Secretary of the Delaware Department of Education. On Dec. 30, Gov.-elect John Carney announced his intent to nominate Bunting for his cabinet to lead Delaware for the next four years.

“It’s been an absolute privilege to be in this district for the length of time that I’ve been here. It’s a very tough decision to go, but I’m hoping to help more people,” Bunting said. Ultimately, the students have been “at the heart of everything” she has done.

Bunting has served as Indian River School District superintendent since 2006, currently responsible for more than 10,000 students and more than 1,300 employees — one of the state’s biggest and fastest-growing school districts.

Dagsboro appoints Baull as mayor

There’s a new mayor in Dagsboro, but one with a familiar face.

Brian Baull Sr. was appointed as mayor of the Town of Dagsboro at its December town council meeting, replacing Norwood Truitt, who remains on the council.

Baull said the appointment wasn’t a complete shock, as the role of mayor requires one to talk to the public — something Baull is used to doing as a local radio D.J.

Dagsboro’s new administrator dives right into the job

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Cindi Brought is fully immersed in her new duties as administrator of the Town of Dagsboro.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Cindi Brought is fully immersed in her new duties as administrator of the Town of Dagsboro.For two months, Dagsboro Town Hall was without day-to-day leadership. But Cynthia “Cindi” Brought has returned to the public sector to become Dagsboro’s town administrator.

Brought said she enjoys helping residents work through their problems — even the tough ones. And she’s done it before, as Frankford’s town clerk (and only town-hall employee) from 1998 to 2001.

“It was always something new and exciting,” Brought said. “It’s a challenge, but I really enjoy it, just dealing with the public. I feel like I’m very approachable, and I listen to their concerns, their complaints, and I follow up on it. … It might not be the answer they want, but I will get it.”

County recognizes Lank for decades of service

Coastal Point • Maria Counts Sussex County Planning & Zoning Director Lawrence Lank, center, receives recognition from Sussex County Council members and employees for his service to the County. Lank was the longest-serving employee in Sussex County history, starting his tenure in 1969 as a map draftsman. He assumed the director position in 1985.Coastal Point • Maria Counts Sussex County Planning & Zoning Director Lawrence Lank, center, receives recognition from Sussex County Council members and employees for his service to the County. Lank was the longest-serving employee in Sussex County history, starting his tenure in 1969 as a map draftsman. He assumed the director position in 1985.After 47 years of service to Sussex County government, Planning & Zoning Director Lawrence Lank will retire on Jan. 6.

The longest-serving County employee in its history, Lank was hired Oct. 14, 1969, as a map draftsman. He then went on to work as a planning tech from 1977 until January 1985, when he became the active director. In April of that year, he took over as permanent Planning & Zoning director.

“We’re certainly sad to see him go and wish him all the best on his next chapter,” said County Administrator Todd Lawson.

During its Jan. 3 meeting, Sussex County council members took the time to recognize Lank for his service and say a few words.

Agenda – January 6, 2016

Bethany Beach

• The Bethany Beach Charter & Ordinance Review Committee (CORC) will meet on Monday, Jan. 9, at 10 a.m. at town hall. The agenda for the meeting includes discussion of possible revisions to Chapter 530, Signs, of the town code; and discussion of remainder of Part I of the town code.

Honored a lifetime later: Civil War veterans receive tribute

Coastal Point • Submitted: Glenn Layton kneels at the grave of a distant cousin, William Layton.Coastal Point • Submitted: Glenn Layton kneels at the grave of a distant cousin, William Layton.Thousands of soldiers died in the Civil War. But those who survived also hold a special place in history. Now, the Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War hope to recognize the gravesites of every Civil War veteran buried in Delaware.

Nearly two years into their mission, the Lt. Col. David L. Stricker Camp #64 has placed nearly 200 small, star-shaped markers at veteran graves.

“We’re trying to identify every soldier in the state that fought for the state of Delaware in that war but does not have any recognition on their stone,” said volunteer Dan Cowgill. “When we find them, we place a marker.”

Rehoboth man arrested after pursuit

Timothy J. DrabicTimothy J. DrabicA Rehoboth Beach man was arrested last week following a high-speed pursuit involving seven law-enforcement agencies.

According to police, around 4:30 a.m. on Dec. 30, a black SUV was observed traveling northbound in the southbound lane of Coastal Highway in Ocean City, Md. It was reported that the SUV was driving at speeds up to 100 mph.

“This individual placed a lot of people in danger. In particular, one Ocean City officer that, apparently, he swerved toward that officer and came very close to striking their marked police car at a very high rate of speed,” said Ocean View Police Chief Ken McLaughlin. “Fortunately, nobody was hurt there, and we’re glad we were able to take him in without any injuries.”

Let's take a look at some non-resolutions

The new year is like a clean slate, right?

Except when it isn’t.

Letters to the Editor — January 6, 2016

Readers believe Perry unfit to lead Energy

Editor:

President-elect Donald Trump wants former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to be America’s next Secretary of Energy. If confirmed, he will oversee our nation’s nuclear arsenal. Those duties include making sure the nuclear stockpile is secure from outside threats and ready for use.

BREAKING NEWS: Police investigating bomb threat at Long Neck Elementary

The Delaware State Police on Thursday afternoon were investigating a bomb threat that was called into the Long Neck Elementary School at 26064 School Lane this afternoon.

Delicious and nutritious eating a goal for 2017

Special to the Coastal Point • Marie Cook: Sue Steel and Erik Schreiber are fitness professionals at Custom Fit 360 in Millville. Schreiber shared his healthy recipes with Marie.Special to the Coastal Point • Marie Cook: Sue Steel and Erik Schreiber are fitness professionals at Custom Fit 360 in Millville. Schreiber shared his healthy recipes with Marie.Here we are again — another New Year! As we say hello to 2017, I’m reminded of one of the songs my husband, Jim, occasionally sings on karaoke nights — “Choices,” as sung by the late, great country singer George Jones. The opening lyrics are: “I’ve had choices since the day that I was born. There were voices that told me right from wrong. If I had listened, no, I wouldn’t be here today, living and dying with the choices I’ve made.”

It has been my tradition at the beginning of each year to write a healthy-cooking and fitness column. We all know the New Year drill. It’s about “choices.” Do I make New Year’s resolutions? Do I set goals for myself? Will this be the year that I finally _____________ (you fill in the blank)? And if I make resolutions, will this be the year that I actually succeed in keeping them?

In December 2015, I again began chemo treatments to deal with the return of my rare form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in both lungs. Treatments ended in April, and I’m thrilled that I am again in remission — eight months and counting.

Tripple Overtime: Teams we’d like to see in Ice Cube’s new 3-on-3 basketball league

You know the guy in all those “Friday” movies? And those “Next Friday” movies? And also those “The Next Friday after the Friday after the last Next Friday following the following Next Friday” movies?

Local squads come out on top at ‘Battle at the Beach’ tournament

Indians take fourth, gear up for duals

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: IR freshman Ramon Turner battles against Kyle Boothe from Oakland Mills in the 285 consolation bracket.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: IR freshman Ramon Turner battles against Kyle Boothe from Oakland Mills in the 285 consolation bracket.The beach has officially been battled at.

Some of the top wrestlers from 17 schools across the state and beyond showed up to hit the mats at Indian River High School for the “Battle at the Beach” wrestling tournament last Thursday, Dec. 28, and Friday, Dec. 29, with several local squads dominating the final standings.

Coming out on top was Sussex Central High School, with Cape Henlopen taking second, Emmaus High School from Pennsylvania placing third, and the Indians putting together one of their best team showings in recent years with a fourth-place finish in front of defending DII state champion Milford in fifth.

“Overall team performance, we wrestled an outstanding tournament,” said IR head coach Jeff Windish, who established the Battle of the Beach at IR in 2009.

Second-half surge send IR girls’ hoops past Milford

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant : Junior guard Fabrea McCray drives against a Milford defender during the second half of Tuesday’s win.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant : Junior guard Fabrea McCray drives against a Milford defender during the second half of Tuesday’s win.Refuse to lose.

That’s what Indian River High School head girls’ basketball coach Donna Polk told her squad before taking the court against Henlopen South rival Milford on Tuesday, Jan. 3.

And despite not having been able to take down the Bucs since the 2011-2012 season, that’s exactly what the Indians did, in a second-half comeback and eventual 23-19 division victory.

“After practice, we always do an assessment, and one of our seniors, Madi McGee, said at the last practice, ‘We have to get it together.’ So today, that’s what we said we had to do,” Polk explained of the mindset heading into the game and coming off of back-to-back losses at the Pat Burowski tournament over winter break.

“We had to get it together. Refuse to lose. Step up and do what we’re supposed to do. Today was just a total team effort. We saw a lot of good things today.”

After going up 2-0 on a pair of free-throws and managing to hold the lead until midway through the second quarter, a three-pointer from Milford senior Kiarra Brittingham broke the scoring drought and gave the Bucs a 3-2 advantage.

IR sophomore center Julia Jordan would answer and tie the game at 4-4 after putting back an offensive rebound, then end up doing it again just before the half; but Milford would still manage to take a 9-6 lead into the break.

Ten Mile Miracle to ‘Body Slam ALS’ at Frankford fire hall

Hill to hit the ropes in WWE-style ‘Battle Royale’

After being diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also known as “ALS” and “Lou Gehrig’s disease”) in March of 2014, Tim Hill’s doctors told him to “take it easy” and to “get his affairs in order.”

He responded by walking 10 miles from Dewey Beach to Bethany Beach.

Then, he jumped out of an airplane.

Extra Points – January 6, 2016

IR boys’ hoops falls to 5-2 after loss to Milford

After a three-week hiatus, the Indian River High School boys’ basketball team returned to the court on Tuesday, Jan. 1, in a 68-38 loss to Milford. The division setback dropped the Indians to 5-2 overall and 2-2 in the Henlopen South, as IR head coach B.J. Joseph faced off against his former team.

DNREC approves faster process for aquaculture leases

Delaware can take its next step forward with shellfish aquaculture. The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) has finally approved an expedited process to approve aquaculture leases in the Rehoboth, Indian River and Little Assawoman bays. In 2017, aquaculturalists could begin growing oysters and clams on lease sites in the inland bays.

South Bethany looks at police building, streetlights, sea level

Numbers are settling into place as South Bethany plans its police station expansion, which has a tentative price tag of $232,450 (including an $18,000 contingency fund). The money is available, spread over the next two budget cycles, said Mayor Pat Voveris on Dec. 9.

Police still seek suspect in Christmas Eve home invasion

The Delaware State Police are still seeking a suspect in a Frankford-area home invasion that occurred on Christmas Eve.

On. Saturday, Dec. 24, at around 6:30 a.m., three suspects forcefully broke into a home through the front door and awoke a 19-year old male victim and an 18-year-old male victim, who were reportedly sleeping in separate bedrooms

Assawoman Canal collects dredging permits

Dredging is once again in the Assawoman Canal’s future. To improve watercraft navigation, Delaware State Parks has officially requested state and national permits for 3.94 miles of maintenance dredging anytime in the next 10 years.

Officials hope to begin in January, finishing the northern canal (Route 26 to White Creek) by the boating season.

Bearhole Farms gives a whole new look to farming

Coastal Point • Kerin Magill: Cindy Stevens and C.J. Mears display some of the produce they have grown through aquaponic farming.Coastal Point • Kerin Magill: Cindy Stevens and C.J. Mears display some of the produce they have grown through aquaponic farming.At the entrance to a greenhouse at Bearhole Farms near Roxana sits a blue tank about the size of a small hot tub. Orange-finned flashes flit around the bottom and a pump emits a constant thrum.

“That’s the engine,” says Bear Hole proprietor Cindy Stevens. The heart of the engine, which produces a perpetual harvest of 3,000 lettuce plants inside the 1,700-square-foot greenhouse, is fish. About 350 koi, common goldfish and channel catfish, to be precise.

In addition to swimming around the tank, the fish eat... and then when that food turns to fish waste, it is released into a system of channels that run under the lettuce plants, watering and feeding the plants. It’s the perfect symbiotic relationship.

State of the Bays report shows the good and the bad

CIB to the public: Scientific data at your fingertips

It doesn’t take a biology degree to enjoy the beauty of the local rivers and bays. So the Delaware Center for the Inland Bays (CIB) created a simplified scientific report so the average Joe can comprehend what’s happening inside the bays.

Fenwick Island ready to bring the ‘Freeze’ to the shore

Coastal Point • File Photo: The Fenwick Freeze creates a splash.Coastal Point • File Photo: The Fenwick Freeze creates a splash.Good news, Fenwick Freeze fans! This year’s freeze — technically a dip in ocean waters whose temperatures are hovering in the mid-40s — will be 90 minutes later.

That means New Year’s revelers will have a bit longer to drink some coffee and pull their swimsuits out of the bottom of their dressers. This year’s swim will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 1. Swimmers will gather on the beach at Bayard Street, according to Rebecca McWilliams, chairman of the town’s Beach Committee.

McWilliams, who has organized the swim since its inception 13 years ago, said although Fenwick’s winter swim might not be as big as those in neighboring beach towns, its charm lies in its simplicity “It’s kind of a local thing,”she said. “It’s the same people that do it every year.” McWilliams said many of the 150 or so swimmers have participated with their families since the very first one.

Hair of the Dog/Exercise like the Eskimos set for New Years Day

Coastal Point photos • File photo: The start to a previous Exercise Like the Eskimos event. Coastal Point photos • File photo: The start to a previous Exercise Like the Eskimos event. For the sixth straight year, local residents can ring in the New Year with the Hair of the Dog 5K/10K, and for the 21st year in a row, they can follow it up with the Leo Brady Exercise like the Eskimos Plunge into the Atlantic Ocean.

The downtown Bethany Beach-based event is set to get underway on Sunday, Jan. 1, with the race starting off at Parkwood Street and Atlantic Avenue, and ending at the Bethany Beach Bandstand.

Hundreds of runners from all age groups and experience levels are expected, to compete on the family friendly and “festive” course.

The first 350 runners to complete the race will receive official finishing medals to go along with both overall and age group awards.

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