Shoulder season is welcomed here

For openers, let me tell you that I had a very funny column lined up for this week. Well, to be fair, it was funny in my eyes, because I was going to make fun of my good friend Bob Bertram for his respective tastes in old movies and current films that could best be described as “female-oriented.”

Coastal Point • File photo

However, the shootings of two police officers in Georgetown Tuesday night kind of dampened my enthusiasm for that particular piece. It’s hard when depressing and senseless acts happen. We all mourn the loss of life, and the apparent moral disregard others place on people’s lives.

It’s sickening, actually.

The incident made me sad. It made me angry. It made me scared because I had a good friend out there in the middle of the night hunting for a dangerous criminal who had proven he would do anything to escape capture. And it made me unbelievably grateful that the local law enforcement community responded the way it did — with dedication and professionalism that gave us one more reason to appreciate where we live.

They keep us safe, so we can live our lives the way we want, and enjoy all the wonderful things we have around us.

For the people who live in our coastal community, life takes an interesting turn after Labor Day Weekend. The social hibernation that many of us partake during the busy summer months ends soon, and the local population steps out into the sun and takes hold of all that is available.

Interestingly enough, the coming out party for many who live in our little coastal oasis is the Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral. On Monday evening, at about 5:30 p.m., the “funeral procession” will begin at the north end of the Bethany boardwalk. The event is a symbolic good-bye to the summer season, but it is also a hello of sorts for those who live here.

See, this is when we hit the beach. This is when the fishing truly takes off. And this is when the specials start to hit at local restaurants and shops.

Actually, allow me to digress a tad here.

This is an important shoulder season for many businesses in the area. As we all know, the economy has taken a bit of a swipe at everybody, and our community is no different. The summer season wasn’t as big as many years, and a number of our favorite restaurants and shops are depending on a strong shoulder season to keep them in business. Get out and hit the local restaurants. Do your gift shopping at the local stores. Contact the fine people at the Coastal Point for all your advertising needs.

Shameless plugs aside, this is the fun time of the year to live here.

Actually, I was a bit premature by labeling the Jazz Funeral as the kick-off to the second season. The event has held a silent auction the Friday before Labor Day for a few years now, and this summer is no different. The event will be held at Bethany Blues this Friday, from 3 to 5 p.m., and will feature light refreshments and music provided by The Dixie Cats, the Downtown Dixieland Band and The Jazz Funeral Irregulars. It will benefit Habitat for Humanity this year, which helps build homes throughout the county.

Bethany Beach will host the 31st Annual Bethany Beach Boardwalk Arts Festival on Saturday, Sept. 12, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be more than 100 artists displaying and selling their work, live music and a silent auction.

That same weekend will see the Nanticoke Indian Powwow on Saturday and Sunday on the powwow grounds near Millsboro. If you haven’t made it to a powwow yet, do. This is a great event, and will leave you in a good mood on the ride home.

This is indeed the time for all of us blessed enough to live in this community to spread our collective wings and fly. The beaches open up a little, the roads seem more conducive to driving forward and the workload diminishes a bit for those of us working full-time over the summer months.

A new fall season means a new start for many of us. Gone are the dog days of summer, replaced by the wide-open and care-free days of fall.

Call it the shoulder season, or the second season. It doesn’t really matter. This is our season.