Dollars & Sense
As the last peaches from local orchards fall to the ground, a different fruit can be picked up from the earth, just a half-mile down Armory Road on another family farm.
From a full breakfast menu boasting omelets and Belgian waffles to a lunch and dinner lineup that includes over 25 different kinds of hot dogs from across the nation, Bethany Beach Diner is sure to have what local diners are looking for.
As the summer season winds to a close, the Bethany parking meters have been taken down, Ernesto is a distant memory and vacationers have freed up Ocean Highway and returned to their home states.
In the wake of Hurricane Katrina at this time last year, gas prices climbed to record highs across the country and locally. On Sept. 7, 2005, Delaware’s average reached a record of $3.23 for a gallon of regular unleaded gas.
Growing up in Williamsville, Shawn Truitt and her mother Jackie Dickerson didn’t have to go far to get a good dinner. Local bars were, and still are, good for leisurely meals and appetizers after work, they said. But there was never a convenient place close by to stop, and pick up a good sandwich for lunch. So the pair decided to do something about it.
Nearly 75 percent of Americans — or more than 204 million people — have access to the Internet, according to a 2004 report from Nielson/Netratings. Just a year prior, 181 million Americans were Internet users. That means there’s been a 15 percent increase in one year.
More than a decade ago and admittedly out of shape, Sheila Schmidt said she decided to do something. The Ocean View resident started attending aerobics classes religiously, more than a couple times a week, until she became a regular and to the point that when the teacher had to miss a session, she asked Schmidt to fill in for her.
Boxes still line the store. Some glass stands are already filled with merchandise. Others sit empty. But in the next week, the boxes will be gone and the shelves will be stocked in the only Hallmark Gold Crown store in coastal Delaware south of Rehoboth Beach.
Five years ago, Jim Barnes would get up, put on a suit, straighten his tie and look outside to see what city he was in. As a salesman with a large software company, working out of Washington, D.C., Barnes traveled most of the days of the week, scurrying back and forth between speaking engagements.
To anyone who is from this area, it’s obvious. Every weekend, people from neighboring metropolitan areas such as Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia or even New York take time from their busy schedules and visit Coastal Delaware and relax. They walk along the boardwalk, lie on the beaches and ride the bikes they brought strapped on the back of their SUVs or minivans.
Janet and Mark Fisher, along with their family, are pretty hands-on with 4 the Shore Furnishings, a Williamsville furniture store they opened in May. More than occasionally, the two owners sell a couch or a wicker chair, walk outside, load the piece of furniture onto the truck and deliver it to the customer — often on the same day it was purchased.
Ask Holly McIntyre, the general manager of Seaport Antique Village. The questions are constant. Who bought the land? What’s replacing the shop? Why, after 37 years, regular customers ask, is the classic antique shop closing?
One afternoon early this summer, Bear Trap resident Rhoda Ganz and her granddaughter visited the Bear Essentials market, a convenience store across from the Bear Trap Dunes Clubhouse. Her granddaughter stepped up to the deli counter, checked the menu and ordered a turkey-and-cheese sandwich. Much to Ganz’s enjoyment, her granddaughter shared.
There are a few constants in this community. Coastal real estate is a strong local investment, traffic picks up a bit in the summer and Shelley Roberts is selling kites and hammocks in Fenwick Island.
When he was 14 years old, Tim Hailey worked his first job as a dishwasher in a local crab house. Hailey worked in the restaurant for eight years, helping run the kitchen, and eventually he assisted the owner with inventory and ordering supplies. During his time at that job, in the early- to mid-1980’s, he knew that he would one day own a crab house.