Letters to the Editor -- August 17, 2012

Reader believes Pires has right experience

In reference to a previous letter in a local paper (“Alex Pires not ready for senate seat”), the writer from Milton commented that candidate Pires questioned Sen. Carper’s character and health, then said that he wants to make the race solely about the senator’s health.

What happened to the senator’s character? It would appear quite legitimate to question both. The senator won the seat in large part because of the health issues of then-Sen. Roth, issues which proved to be fatal.

We know how candidate Pires acquired his wealth as a lawyer and business owner in the private sector, paying millions in taxes and hiring hundreds of people. What we don’t know is how Sen. Carper acquired his as he has spent his entire career in public service. We might wonder if it was investments based on insider information acquired through his position as a U.S. senator. Of course, that is all legal because Congress has exempted themselves from the insider trading laws.

Who is better qualified to represent us in today’s economic environment, someone who has never been involved in the public world or a self-made millionaire who made his fortune in the public sector employing hundreds of taxpayers and paying millions in taxes? I will go with the businessman who knows what is involved in running a successful business.

Walt Berwick

Bethany resident wants more public input

I am writing in support of Dan Costello’s letter regarding the development of the park on the Church-Neff property. As he cogently indicates, development of the property should not proceed without a complete plan from the Town Council.

The trees that have already been cut would have helped absorb any surplus/overflow water from heavy rains or flooding and would have helped prevent erosion of the soil during heavy runoffs or flooding, erosion which is already degrading the Loop Canal. And the wetlands act as an effective, natural water-collecting system during wet spells (as well as a reservoir during dry spells).

As anyone who’s traveled through Bethany Beach after a heavy rain knows, runoff water easily and quickly overwhelms the drainage system, with the result that many roads and sidewalks are covered with water to the depth of 3 inches or more, with that water standing as long as a day or two.

Although the proposed park is “across the highway” from downtown, the water system is interconnected — what happens on one side of Coastal Highway affects the other side at some point, even though the connection may not be immediately obvious. Therefore, I strongly urge the Town Council to consider Costello’s advice and to develop, with community input, an approved plan for the park before proceeding with any further incremental work on the property.

Anthony Chiffolo
Bethany Beach

We need safer, and more, bike lanes

I would like to thank the Coastal Point for bringing up bicycle safety issues in Ocean View. My family and I are frequent riders on the Ocean View streets, and we see very little effort made to make the streets safe for bicyclists.

I agree with the complaint made by George Walter about the abrupt ending of certain bicycle lanes, like the one on Central Avenue. However, I think it is a far worse danger that so many busy streets have no bicycle lane or shoulder whatsoever — for example, the section of Central Avenue between Woodland and Route 26.

Even assuming the rider would get adequate warning that the bicycle lane is ending at the corner of Central and Woodland, as Mr. Walter requests, a cyclist is still forced to ride on a road that is barely wide enough for two cars. The stretch of Woodland between Central and West is similarly unsafe, as there is no shoulder and a good deal of traffic.

I understand that road widening is not easily done, so I am not expecting adequate bicycle lanes any time soon. (Although we have money for new sidewalks for nonexistent pedestrians, there does not appear to be any interest in helping the far more numerous cyclists stay safe.)

However, I do have a complaint about something that the Town should fix. There are many bicyclists that use Route 26 through Ocean View. And there is some shoulder in most places. But that shoulder is full of gravel and sand and other debris and does not appear to have been maintained in years. Instead of the shoulder being safe, the unsafe condition can actually make it more likely that a rider will swerve into the car lane or worse, wipe out completely.

If you could take some pictures of the stretch between Central and the canal, I think you could illustrate the problem. Perhaps if you could draw some attention to the problem, the Town could be embarrassed into properly maintaining the shoulder.

Paul Kugler
Ocean View

Cottage Tour a hit, thanks to many

As co-chairs of the 21st Annual Beach and Bay Cottage Tour we would like to offer our most sincere appreciation and gratitude to everyone responsible for helping to make this year’s tour such an outstanding success. This tour is held in support of the South Coastal Library in Bethany Beach.

We would also like to thank Gov. and Mrs. Jack Markell for once again graciously serving as our honorary chairpersons and for their support of the South Coastal Library.

The committee members were: Chris Aumiller, Bob Bertram, Carol Brigleb, Barbara Carlson, Thea Chandross, Faith Denault, Dave and Mary Ann Flickinger, Joan Gordon, Kathy Green, Lindy Griffith, Carol and Charlie Kopay, Linda Kulin, Michelle and Ron Lips, Diane and Bob Maddex, Judy Marcucelli, Lois McNamara, Nancy Nothnagel, Janet Parham, Donna Philpitt, Cathy Schultz, Karen Taylor, Joan Thomas and Marylou Tietz. These men and women worked hundreds of hours in the coordination, preparation and implementation of the tour.

Also, without the dedicated 400-plus volunteers who return to us year after year, serving as hostess coordinators, hostesses, ticket sellers, traffic coordinators, parkers, sign installers, flower arrangers, advertising sales and raffle sellers, this event would not be able to take place. Thanks to all!

We would like to extend a very special thank-you to Dick Fox and David Green for standing in the Harris Teeter parking lot for two hot days, managing the parking and busing, and doing so with charm, courtesy and efficiency. Thank you to Mr. Jim Feidor, Harris Teeter store manager, for allowing us to use their parking lot to shuttle tourgoers to the homes in the North Bethany communities of Ocean Village and Sea Del.

Thank you Dana Miller, manager of the Christian Church Conference Center, for the use of their property for parking. We were able to stage two shuttle buses from there to the home on the tour in South Bethany.

This year, the Lord Baltimore Lions Club provided logistics support, as well as manpower for the setup and takedown of the signage. Thank you for including the tour as one of your many service projects. The Lions’ motto is “We Serve,” and indeed they did.

We are totally indebted to the 10 homeowners who loaned us their homes for the two days of the tour: Dr. Gregory Carson, Mark and Karissa Kovenr, Neal and Karis Brown, Dan and Debbie Goldberg, Tom and Lawrene Anfinson, Paul and Karen Zarycki, Mable Ruddo, Chris and Trish Abell, Michael and Joan Kaminsky, and Lauren Kay-Pollin and Richard Pollin. We thank you for your graciousness in sharing your homes and for putting up with many visits during the preparation for the tour.

Our raffles were a huge success, and for that we thank the six restaurants: (1) DiFebo’s Bistro on the Green at Bear Trap; (2) DiFebo’s on Route 26; (3) Off the Hook; (4) Magnolia’s Seafood Bar & Grill; (5) The Parkway; and (6) Sedona; plus the six local artists who donated wonderful pieces of art for the raffle: (1) Cheryl Wisbrock; (2) Laura Hickman; (3) Aubré Duncan; (4) Tinsel Hughes; (5) Dorothy Harrison Braun; and (6) Carol Dyer. Thanks to each of you for your support! The happy winners have all been notified, and the names of all winners will appear in the next issue of “The Connection.”

Without the many advertisers in our booklet, the tote bag sponsors and the many generous donors who made financial contributions to our tour, the tour would not be so successful, and we offer our sincere thanks. We hope we can count on your continued support again in 2013!

The Adopt-a-House program was wonderful again this year, and thanks go to the following local organizations for their support in providing coordinators and hostesses in the homes. They are: Cripple Creek Ladies Club, Barefoot Gardeners of Fenwick Island, Gardeners By the Sea, Bay Forest Homeowners Association, South Bethany Women’s Club, Salt Pond Women’s Club, Lord Baltimore Women’s Club, Beta Sigma Phi, Women’s Council of Realtors, Southampton Homeowners Association and Shore Democrats. In addition, we have many other hosts and hostesses who volunteered outside of these organizations, and to you all we send many thanks.

To the Beebe Medical Center, who has provided the tour with booties for many years — you have our sincere thanks and appreciation. To the towns of Bethany Beach and South Bethany and their police departments — we thank you for your cooperation in coordinating the parking logistics for our tour participants. We totally appreciate your help! We also thank St Ann’s Church for allowing us to use a portion of their parking lot for the tour hostesses to form carpools.

Special thanks go to our local newspapers and publications who give us so much advance coverage of this event. Your support over the years has helped us tremendously.

Finally, thanks to all of you who attended the 21st Beach and Bay Cottage Tour. We hope that you enjoyed all of the homes, and we look forward to hosting you at next year’s tour. Mark your calendars for Wednesday and Thursday, July 24 and 25, 2013, and be sure to make your reservations early. Please visit our Web site at www.beachandbaycottagetour.com.

Again, thanks to all of you for your continued support of the South Coastal Library.

Karen Taylor and Kathy Green, Co-Chairs
2012 Beach and Bay Cottage Tour

Team HOPE grateful for support

Team HOPE (Hocker’s Organized Proud Employees) would like to thank everyone who participated and gave during our Alzheimer’s fundraiser this season. We were able to donate over $4,000 to this cause so far. Your donations are really appreciated!

We will be walking for the Alzheimer’s Association in October, if anyone would like to sponsor a walker at that time. All money will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association through Jamie Megee. Thanks again!

G&E Inc. and Hocker’s Super Center

Local woman asks for support with peacocks

Hello from Hi Point Farm on Cedar Neck Road in Ocean View, Del. My name is Diane Turner, and I live in the James farmhouse (built in about 1880). This farm was owned by Mary Lighthipe and has been in her family for many years. I have been here, taking care of horses, since 1985 and have lived here since 1992.

In the old days, before the amazing gift she made of this farm, I helped in the fields with a big, wonderful John Deere tractor. You talk about fun — but an amazing amount of work! We used to pull each other around in the snow on a sewer cap behind a pickup truck through the fields. Mary always enjoyed driving her Buick through the fields, as well!

After losing her son in 1988, she was concerned about the property being developed, so she made an amazing generous gift of the farm to Sussex County and provided me with lifetime rights to live on the farm and have my horses, dogs and farm animals.

Things have really changed here in all these years, and I have tried really hard to conform to all the changes. I have people who feel I should not be riding the horses through the farm any longer, afraid of maybe a pile of horse poo on the path, I suppose.

I have been riding horses here and horses have lived here for the last 30 years. H.H. Lighthipe’s horse Lancer had pastures that reached all the way from the barn to Bethany Club Tennis. Lancer died in my lap at the age of 38, back where the wetlands have been established by CIB.

That horse lived here for 26 years. I used to ride him down Cedar Neck, and people would come out of the old Magnolia’s restaurant to feed him carrots. Then we would be on our way through the Fresh Pond, across Route 1 and down the beach to visit H’s mom, Mary, in Sussex Shores. Boy, did she love seeing that horse!

Things have changed a great deal since those days. We used to do plenty of clay pigeon shooting here in the fields. The last time I tried that, the state police were here in 20 minutes — said it bothered the neighbors.

Man, you should have heard it down here on Friday, July 6, this year — the loudest fireworks I have ever heard outside a professional display. All I did for an hour and a half was run from one field to the other, trying to calm the horses and dogs. All three of the big horses had leg injuries from running through two fence sections, trying so hard to get away from the noise, and it went on for over an hour! I thought Sunny was going to run himself to death.

That day was one of the terrible heat-wave days, when the heat index reached over 105, so they had a long, tough day to begin with, and when you add in the amazing fear they went through that night, the three horses were just completely exhausted!

I think fireworks are illegal, but no one came to do anything, so it continued and started again the next night. I treated the leg wounds and mended the fence, but Sunny is still freaked about noise. I guess that’s just another thing I need to get used to.

Now the Agriculture Department has been here, and it seems two ladies have complained about my beautiful peacocks roaming the Neck — seems they bother the ladies. They are not mean, will leave if you make noise and are so meek and beautiful. They have been on this farm for 17 years. But it’s time to lock them up, I am told.

I can’t afford to build an aviary for them, so I am asking for help. I need volunteers, building material and fence so I can keep these wonderful birds. Anybody willing to help with this project, I would be forever grateful to. I need a design and help, please!

I live on this farm, but it is not mine, and when I die it goes to the County with the rest of the James Farm. Every cent I have put into this property is a donation to the County. I have worked with Fish & Wildlife and Ducks Unlimited to add duck ponds and have dug up cedar trees in peril of getting mowed down and replanted them so they would survive (54 so far).

I love this farm and intend on taking as good care of it as I can, in memory of Mary and her amazing gift to you all who walk this farm and enjoy the nature it harbors. Please help me with this project! Call, email or text me if you want to help (diane@hipointfarm.org/302-344-7784). I have a limited amount of time left before they capture and remove the birds.

Diane Turner
Ocean View

Tour de Har a hit, thanks to many

Another thank-you to this great community and to our friends and family who travelled here to participate in the 5th annual Tour de Har bike ride for pulmonary fibrosis in memory of Harry Walls. Once again, local businesses and generous friends donated to our auction table and folks dug deep into their pockets to help make this the most successful Tour to date.

Special thanks go to those who help plan our event and who also offer their valuable time to work the registration and auction tables to keep things running smoothly. I am very appreciative of the sag-wagon drivers and Roxana fire company, as they are essential to the bike ride. Kudos to Lord Baltimore Elementary School and Harpoon Hanna’s for allowing us to use their venues for the fundraiser.

Research into finding a cure for pulmonary fibrosis is proven to be a slow and arduous task. Those who participated in this year’s Tour de Har can be proud in knowing that perhaps we’ve made it just a little easier and perhaps we’ve gotten just a little bit closer to finding a cure and assigning purpose to Harry’s battle with pulmonary fibrosis.

Many many thanks.

Doreen Walls and family
Tour de Har