Local News

Organizers break ground on groundbreaking garden

Coastal Point Photos • Laura Walter: It’s not really a ground-breaking event without dignitaries, officials and volunteers chipping in to get things started, and things got started in a major fashion at the Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek.Coastal Point Photos • Laura Walter: It’s not really a ground-breaking event without dignitaries, officials and volunteers chipping in to get things started, and things got started in a major fashion at the Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek.It all started in 2011 with a small cocktail party and a meeting at the library. Now, the governor and Delaware’s First Lady are attending groundbreakings and the endowment is growing for the Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek.

On the cool, sunny morning of Dec. 1, most of the leaves had fallen in Dagsboro, obscuring the ground where flowers will reappear next spring, and where miles of green briar have already been heaved out.

“The Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek will be a world-class, inspirational, educational and sustainable public botanic garden in southern Delaware, created for the benefit and enjoyment of all,” their mission promises.

Missing grave decorations trouble families, volunteers

It was a beautiful ceremony at the Millsboro veterans’ cemetery. Sally Kubicki and her volunteers had just finished decorating the graves with Christmas greenery.

But an hour later, from inside the chapel, Kubicki was stunned to learn that someone was removing the wreaths. Families would return to the gravestones to discover the decorations were already gone.

School concerts offering holiday music to community

Children across the land have been preparing for the upcoming slate of holiday concerts almost as diligently as they’ve worked on their lists for Santa. Horns are tooting, drummers are drumming and singers are tuning their pipes in anticipation of the chance to shine in front of their families and friends and spread some holiday cheer while they’re at it.

O’Mara: Everyone needs clean water, but it takes a movement

Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Former state Sen. George H. Bunting announces an environmental award while former DNREC Sec. Collin O’Mara and his wife, Krishanti, share a laugh.Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Former state Sen. George H. Bunting announces an environmental award while former DNREC Sec. Collin O’Mara and his wife, Krishanti, share a laugh.Clean water isn’t a matter of environmentalists versus business versus farming. Everyone benefits, so clean water has to be considered “a value,” not a political issue, said Collin O’Mara, president/CEO of the National Wildlife Federation and former head of the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control.

“There are a whole lot of things we could do if we were a lot more collaborative about it,” O’Mara said at the Nov. 30 Love Your Inland Bays Dinner, hosted by the Inland Bays Foundation.

Clean water must be considered an economic driver, not a nuisance, he said. For example, Realtors and builders rely on a healthy vision of the bays, which are currently “Look, but don’t touch,” as many of the waterways aren’t safe for swimming or fishing.

“You can’t have a thriving … community, unless you have access to clean water,” O’Mara said. “We know folks want to be close to those resources.”

Ocean View to celebrate season at the park

Aiming to spread holiday cheer, the Town of Ocean View will be holding its annual Holiday in the Park this weekend. The public is being invited to join in the festivities at John West Park on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 3 to 5 p.m.

Agenda – December 9, 2016

Bethany Beach

• The Bethany Beach Town Council has canceled its December meeting.

• Bethany Beach Town Hall will be closed Dec. 23-26 for Christmas.

Nativity Festival to showcase the heart of Christmas

Coastal Point • File Photo: A stained glass nativity set catches the light from a window during a past festival.Coastal Point • File Photo: A stained glass nativity set catches the light from a window during a past festival.Away in a manger,
no crib for a bed,

The little Lord Jesus
laid down his sweet head,

The stars in the bright sky
looked down where he lay,

The little Lord Jesus
asleep on the hay.

Next weekend, the Ocean View Presbyterian Church will open its doors for its annual Nativity Festival — inviting the public to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Local book lovers aim to fill Santa’s Book Bag

Special to the Coastal Point • Christina Weaver: Paolo and Luca Donato donate to Santa’s Book Bag. Paolo even donated to the cause the money he was given at his Dec. 1 birthday party.Special to the Coastal Point • Christina Weaver: Paolo and Luca Donato donate to Santa’s Book Bag. Paolo even donated to the cause the money he was given at his Dec. 1 birthday party.“I like the idea of all kids having a brand new book for Christmas,” said Paolo Donato, who turned 6 on Dec. 1.

And that, in a nutshell, is what Santa’s Book Bag is all about.

Santa’s Book Bag is the brainchild of Lynne Davies, a retired teacher who recently moved from New Jersey to Bayside in West Fenwick.

“I was at my book club meeting in Northern Jersey a few years ago, and we were talking about what an important role books had played for each of us as children. I even remembered the smell and feel of the pages when I opened up a new book and wondered about the story,” said Davies.

“And then the idea came to me, as clear as can be — even the name, Santa’s Book Bag,” she added. “From there, I set out learning how to donate books to the best organizations to get them to needy children and which businesses would be willing to have collection boxes. By Christmas of that year, we collected over a thousand books to donate.”

Fenwick to discuss voter qualifications at special meeting Dec. 8

Who is qualified to vote in Fenwick Island elections? The discussion continues this week, as the Fenwick Island Town Council has scheduled a special meeting for Thursday, Dec. 8, at 2 p.m. to discuss a proposed amendment to the town charter that would expand voter and candidate qualifications.

They’ll once again have legal guidance from Town Solicitor Mary Schrider-Fox.

Educator recognized for rescuing toddler from roadway

Usually, a traffic jam leads to inconvenience. But on Nov. 2, Ronna Cobb caused a traffic jam to save a life.

Cobb was on the road around 7 a.m. that morning. As a Phillip C. Showell Elementary School paraprofessional and bus driver, she was performing the first half of her regular duties.

She was driving in Selbyville around the same time as police officer Laurence “Larry” Corrigan.

IRSD referendum fails by 20 votes

Every vote counts on the local level. On Tuesday, Nov. 22, Indian River School District’s current expense referendum was defeated by a margin of 20 votes.

Bethany becoming a Weekend Wonderland this December

Building on last year’s successful debut, Bethany Beach will again celebrate the holidays each Saturday in December with Weekend Wonderland, which will feature special shopping hours, and festive activities including caroling around the town’s boardwalk holiday tree, free gift-wrapping, a holiday movie, crafts for children and a chance to meet characters from the Disney movie “Frozen.”

Christmas parades coming to a Main Street near you

Selbyville, Millsboro, Dagsboro and more this weekend

For those in need of some holiday cheer, a number of local parades are ringing in the Christmas season in the next two weeks. Families are being invited to line the streets and cheer on their favorite floats, marching bands, fire trucks, classic cars and local celebrities.

Selbyville Christmas has books, bells, dance and decor

Imagine sitting in a bright, cozy, yet high-ceilinged church as the delicate sound of bells fills the air.

The Capital Ringers bell choir is bringing that melody back to Selbyville on Saturday, Dec. 3, at Salem United Methodist Church.

Bethany Beach to get a Caribbean flair this weekend at Mango’s

The cooler nights of December are going to give way to a tropical breeze this weekend, with the Quiet Resorts Charitable Foundation’s (QRCF) annual Caribbean Christmas event at Mango’s in downtown Bethany Beach on Saturday, Dec. 3.

Coat collection for vets begins

There’s never a wrong time to give people a hand up, and the Selbyville Community Club is helping veterans this winter with the annual “Coats & Sweats for Vets” campaign. People may donate gently-used winter jackets, sweatshirts or sweatpants at Selbyville Town Hall for the entire month of December.

Winter getting Fest-ive in neighboring towns

If local parades and tree-lighting events don’t offer a big enough helping of holiday spirit, there are two area events that offer winter festivities on a grand scale: Winterfest of Lights in Ocean City, Md., and the new Winter WonderFEST in Lewes.

Sing for the season at Fenwick Island tree-lighting

How about a little sand with your Santa Claus?

Fenwick Island will welcome the Christmas season with a “Sea the Holidays” community event.

Residents and neighbors are being invited to a holiday gathering on Friday, Dec. 2. People can enjoy caroling, the tree-lighting and shared treats from 6 to 9 p.m.

Agenda – December 2, 2016

Bethany Beach

• The Bethany Beach Town Council has canceled its December meeting.

• Bethany Beach Town Hall will be closed Dec. 23-26 for Christmas.

Animal welfare officials seize 14 dogs

State authorities rescued 14 “severely emaciated and neglected dogs” from a Millsboro property on Wednesday, Nov. 23.

G.W. Carver serves up Thanksgiving for APELL?students in need

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Students from the G.W. Carver school enjoy a traditional American Thanksgiving meal on Friday, Nov. 18.Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Students from the G.W. Carver school enjoy a traditional American Thanksgiving meal on Friday, Nov. 18.At the G.W. Carver Center in Frankford on Nov. 18, the APELL (Advancing Proficiency of English Language Learners) staff was thankful for community.

With local residents coming together to not only donate, but volunteer, that’s how they were able to put on their second annual Thanksgiving feast for immigrant students, introducing most of them to their first traditional Thanksgiving with a celebratory feast.

“I think it was wonderful to see so many people involved with trying to make the kids have a welcoming first Thanksgiving in our country,” said Lori Ott, who teaches English and serves as the program’s unofficial “lead teacher” after 22 years in the district.

“The students really appreciated it, and I think the volunteers really enjoyed getting to meet the students. Even though there were language barriers, you could still see them communicating.”

All hands on deck at Mountaire Thanksgiving for Thousands

Coastal Point - Shaun M. Lambert: Volunteers flooded into Mountaire Farms in Selbyville on Monday, Nov. 21, to help the company's Thanksgiving for Thousands program. They packed 8,500 boxes of food for those in need.Coastal Point - Shaun M. Lambert: Volunteers flooded into Mountaire Farms in Selbyville on Monday, Nov. 21, to help the company's Thanksgiving for Thousands program. They packed 8,500 boxes of food for those in need.

People from all walks of life joined together earlier this week to help give those in need a traditional Thanksgiving meal.

Auditor: IRSD too trusting of Miller, lacked policies

Problems can be ‘easily fixed,’ Wagner says

Many Indian River School District staff and residents were holding their breaths this week in anticipation of the Delaware Auditor of Accounts’ report on the district, which was released Nov. 17.

The good news? The problems are easily fixed, said Delaware State Auditor R. Thomas Wagner Jr.

SB police building not keeping up with needs, consultant says

The South Bethany Police Department doesn’t have room to properly do its job. It’s not because the SBPD suddenly grew in staff. (It hasn’t.) In reality, the police department wasn’t built for all of today’s needs.

Bethany Beach looks at replacing trolleys with trams

Bethany Beach could move in the near future to switch from its signature trolley-style bus for in-town public transportation to instead using a jeep pulling a tram.

Towns to hold tree-lighting ceremonies this weekend

After the dishes have been put away and the whole family is over-stuffed with turkey and fixings, many begin their Christmas holiday decorating. And, this weekend, two area towns are inviting the public to join in on lighting the towns’ Christmas trees and get into the holiday spirit.

Millsboro to hold holiday event

After a successful turnout in the first year of its new holiday tradition, the Town of Millsboro is bringing back their free holiday event and tree-lighting ceremony this Saturday, Nov. 26.

“I think it’s a nice community event — very family-friendly,” said Millsboro Town Manager Sheldon Hudson. “It’s like mini Rockefeller experience, Millsboro-style.”

Sea Colony median to become stormwater wetland

Project to be pedestrian- and eco-friendly

Coastal Point • Google Maps: Officials from the Center for the Inland Bays say the stormwater wetland that will replace the slip ramp of Pennsylvania Avenue will reduce polluting runoff, while officials with the Delaware Department of Transportation hope it will improve pedestrian safety as well.Coastal Point • Google Maps: Officials from the Center for the Inland Bays say the stormwater wetland that will replace the slip ramp of Pennsylvania Avenue will reduce polluting runoff, while officials with the Delaware Department of Transportation hope it will improve pedestrian safety as well.Wetlands are coming to the highway between Bethany Beach and South Bethany, for the good of Mother Nature and pedestrians.

Sea Colony’s Route 1 intersection will likely be reconfigured in 2018 to allow for a small stormwater wetlands project just east of the highway.

Northbound traffic currently splits near the Sea Colony traffic signal. Cars either curve left on the highway or shoot down a right-hand fork to Pennsylvania Avenue and downtown Bethany.

“We’re going to take that slip ramp of Pennsylvania Avenue out,” said Marianne Walch of the Center for the Inland Bays, “so that, instead of just coming off at full speed off the highway into Bethany there, people will have to turn right at the light.”

The future is still bright at Miken

Coastal Point • Darin McCann: Mike Cummings, center, with sons Sean and Patrick, look toward the future with Miken Builders.Coastal Point • Darin McCann: Mike Cummings, center, with sons Sean and Patrick, look toward the future with Miken Builders.There was a look of pride on the face of Mike Cummings as he sat in his conference room earlier this week.

The driving force and CEO of Miken Builders in Millville was enjoying the fact that his company was celebrating 30 years of doing business, and that their spinoff, BetterLiving of Delmarva, was in its eighth year of constructing sunrooms, porch enclosures and awnings.

He was proud of the fact that his average employee has worked with Miken for more than 10 years, that he has worked with Contractors for a Cause for nearly 20 years and was actively involved in the construction of Justin’s Beach House — the respite home in Bethany Beach for families affected by cancer. And he was most certainly proud of the two young men who shared the conference-room table with him.

Patrick is the sales manager at BetterLiving, and Sean is a project manager for Miken. They are both well-versed in the ways of Miken and know that each project they take on must live up to the high standards long-attributed to the company.

BREAKING NEWS: IRSD referendum fails by 20 votes

District goes back to the drawing board

On the local level, every vote counts. On Tuesday, Nov. 22, the Indian River School District’s current-expense referendum was defeated by a margin of just 20 votes.

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