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.
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.
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.”
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
• The Bethany Beach Town Council has canceled its December meeting.
• Bethany Beach Town Hall will be closed Dec. 23-26 for Christmas.
State authorities rescued 14 “severely emaciated and neglected dogs” from a Millsboro property on Wednesday, Nov. 23.
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.”
People from all walks of life joined together earlier this week to help give those in need a traditional Thanksgiving meal.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.”
Project to be pedestrian- and eco-friendly
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.”
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.
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.
“Our veterans are very special to us. We pray our program shows them how much we care,” said second-grader Megan Brining, who opened Lighthouse Christian School’s (LCS) annual Veterans Day program with a prayer.
The program, held on Nov. 18, featured a presentation of the colors, the “Pledge of Allegiance” and seventh-grader Izzy Donihue singing “The Star Spangled Banner,” and focused on honoring all branches of the military services.
Eighth-grader Danny Williams introduced Airman 1st class Rudy Viguie, who served as F-86 crew chief in the U.S. Air Force, noting the branch was created in 1947, after President Truman signed the National Security Act.
“What did the Air Force do to me as an individual?” said Viguie. “In 1952, I was a 16-year-old kid growing up on the streets of New York City, totally unsupervised. I came from a single-parent home, basically did what I wanted. I don’t know how I stayed out of trouble.
The Delaware State Police this week were in the midst of investigating a homicide that occurred last week.
On Wednesday, Nov. 16, around 11:50 p.m., the Millsboro Police Department responded to a call about an unconscious man lying partially in the roadway on West Monroe and Houston streets.
Beside a quiet country road, sunny fields stretch toward a leafy forest that hides beauties within. A 37-acre public garden is coming to Dagsboro, and the public is being invited to the groundbreaking of Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek on Thursday, Dec. 1.
Public tours will begin at 10 a.m., focusing on the Woodlands pathways down to Pepper Creek. The ceremony will begin sometime between 11 and 11:30 a.m.
It’s been several years since the volunteer group formed to create a “world-class, inspirational, educational” public garden on Piney Neck Road, just outside of Dagsboro.
“It’s a seminal event,” said Ray Sander, board treasurer. It’s perhaps the first public opportunity to witness what’s happening behind the scenes. “They can take a tour there and see what we’ve done. … We’re moving ahead.”
A “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” evening of socializing, shopping, entertainment, food and drink in Bethany Beach will benefit girls thousands of miles away who just want an education.
The irony of that is not lost on the event’s coordinators, Harriett Nettles and Sedona restaurant owner Marion Parrott.
The event, scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 1, is a fundraiser for the Helambu Education & Livelihood Project (HELP), which seeks to build schools in remote parts of Nepal. Helambu, Nettles said, is “one of the poorest and most illiterate regions of Nepal. The only way to get there is to trek from Katmandu.”
Nettles, who lives in Asheville, N.C., first traveled to Nepal as a volunteer with Children of the Earth. There, she said, she met a young man named Jimmy Lama, who was the first person in his village to graduate from secondary school and had started HELP as a way to give back to his community.
Bethany Beach firefighters were among those who recently rescued a dog who had been swept out to sea.
According to the Delaware Division of Public Health, the Delaware Office of Animal Welfare’s Delaware Animal Services (DAS) dispatch center received a call just after 11 a.m. on Nov. 6 about a dog that needed to be rescued from the water about a mile south of the Indian River Inlet.
While swimming, Cruz, a 4-year-old black Labrador retriever, was swept about 500 yards offshore and was unable to return to land on his own. DAS officers were immediately dispatched and requested water rescue equipment and assistance from the Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company.
Audit to be released Nov. 17
The Indian River School District is asking taxpayers to think local when it comes to funding education. The public will vote in a Nov. 22 referendum on whether to approve a 49-cent increase in the local tax rate — primarily to keep up with skyrocketing student enrollment.
Patti Grimes, executive director of the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation and the Carl M. Freeman Foundation, wears many hats. This week, she dons one more.
Grimes has been named 2016 Sussex County Woman of Distinction by the Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay. She received the award on Wednesday, Nov. 16, during a luncheon at the Rehoboth Beach Country Club. Honorary co-chairs for the event were Delaware First Lady Carla J. Markell and Michelle Freeman; co-chairs were Sandy Taras and Twig Burton.
Grimes, who was a Girl Scout as a child growing up in Boonsboro, Md., has a grown daughter, Marisa, and said she hopes all young girls realize just how much they can change the world.
“I want them to know how valuable they are and how unique and special each person is,” she said.
The Sussex County Council, along with members of the Sussex County Planning & Zoning Commission and County staff met earlier this week for a workshop on the County’s 2018 Comprehensive Plan.
A comprehensive plan, which is required by state law, is a long-range policy guide for decision-making regarding the future of the natural and built environment of a community.
A group of 20 boys from Sussex County marched proudly in New York City’s Veterans Day parade on Friday, Nov. 11. Members of Troop 382 in Dagsboro were joined by members of Troop 105 from Long Neck for the appearance.
Vinny Tallarico, assistant scoutmaster of Troop 382 and a New York City native, said he was “tour guide” for the three-day trip. In addition to marching in the parade, along with 25,000 others, the boys visited the World War II aircraft carrier the U.S.S. Intrepid, as well as the 9/11 Museum.
While in New York, the boys camped on Staten Island, at the Camp William H. Pouch Boy Scout Camp, Tallarico said, which included cooking their own breakfast, packing lunches and cooking dinners at the campsite. Taking advantage of free subway fares and ferry tickets available to non-profit groups, the troop members were able to keep costs for the trip down to $90 per person.