Fenwick Island News
Town of Fenwick Island, Delaware
Town council meetings:
Town Council 2013-2014:
Non-emergency police contact:
It’s here! The unofficial start of the summer season at the Delaware shore has arrived with Memorial Day weekend, and it’s a time of transition for the area, as the relatively quiet second season of spring sprouts into the hustle and bustle that is the resort area’s high season.
The Delaware State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit this week was investigating a motorcycle crash near Fenwick Island that seriously injured a Maryland man.
A very large check was presented to Town of Fenwick Island on April 22.
Representatives of the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control (DNREC) came to present a $21,293 matching grant for Fenwick’s new playground equipment, sponsored by the state Outdoor Recreation, Parks & Trails Program.
The playground was just completed in April.
Earth Day is a 46-year tradition designed to show Mother Earth some love.
People can plan an eco-friendly project of their own (plant a tree and turn off a light bulb), but local towns and groups are also hosting Earth Day events all month, including the Bethany Beach Nature Center, in Fenwick Island, at the Indian River Life-Saving Station, in Millsboro and in South Bethany.
The Fenwick Island Town Council has approved a change in the Town’s old 30-foot building height limit. Depending on who tells the story, the change was rushed through in five weeks, or spread over 15 months.
Either way, buildings can now be up to 2 feet higher than before.
Local park projects are getting their day in the sun after the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control (DNREC) announced its 2015 grant awards. Across the state, DNREC’s Outdoor Recreation, Parks & Trails Program is contributing just under $1.29 million to 14 parks and trails projects.
After a great deal of anticipation, the Freeman Stage at Bayside announced its 2016 summer season.
The season includes more than 70 performances, with 51 at the Stage in Selbyville. The lineup feature a diverse offering of dance, theatre, children’s performances and live music — including 13 National Recording Artists.
This year’s performers include three Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees and, combined, have nearly 40 Grammy Awards and over 60 Grammy nominations; one Academy Award and two Oscars nominations; and three Country Music Association awards and nine CMA nominations.
The national acts include Phillip Phillips and Matt Nathanson on June 29; Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes on July 2; The Band Perry on July 3; Justin Moore on July 7; Pat Benatar and Melissa Etheridge on July 13; The Beach Boys on July 14; Cherry Poppin’ Daddies on July 16; Huey Lewis and The News on July 27; The Silk Road Ensemble and Yo-Yo Ma on Aug. 10; Gladys Knight on Aug. 19 and the Wailers on Aug. 27. Tickets for the performances will go on sale April 4 at 10 a.m.
The Roxana Volunteer Fire Company announced that they are hosting a live-fire drill on Saturday, March 19, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the now-vacant Twin Cedars Apartments, located at 36112 Zion Church Road near Frankford.
This drill has been in the making for at least 5 years and has taken countless hours of coordination between the departments, owner and government agencies.
U.S. Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) last week asked a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers official if funds left over from Hurricane Sandy might be diverted to emergency repairs of the beaches and dunes at three of Delaware’s beach towns.
Some warn about wintertime perceptions
The Fenwick Island Charter & Ordinance Committee isn’t entirely comfortable with a proposed freeboard ordinance. In fact, the group was split on March 8 on whether they agreed with the law as written.
Some citizens oppose a new height limit
Freeboard has returned as an increasingly divisive topic at Fenwick Island Town Council meetings.
On Feb. 26, a number of residents opposed an ordinance that would allow Fenwick houses to surpass the 30-foot building height by 18 to 24 inches, based on adding that much more freeboard to the structure.
Fenwick Island will have no more than three hotels for the time being. The town council voted unanimously (with Councilman Roy Williams absent) on Feb. 26 to place a moratorium on new hotel/motel uses within town limits.
In the wake of two storms that heavily damaged dunes and beaches in Bethany Beach, South Bethany and Fenwick Island, the potential for funding for shoring up the storm-beaten beaches remains unclear.
Last week, officials announced that there would be no funding this year for replenishment of those beaches in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ working plan for 2016.
Fenwick Island is the latest town to join a long list of municipalities opposing seismic testing off the Atlantic coast. Besides the potential harm to hundreds of thousands of animals, the town should not have to face the threat of a possible future oil spill, the town council decided on Jan. 22.
Hair of the Dog 5K/10K to kick off festivities
It’s been a Bethany Beach tradition for going on 20 years now, and this New Years’ Day will be rung in the same way, with the Leo Brady Exercise Like the Eskimos.
In addition to the annual plunge, in which participants brave the cold temperatures of the Atlantic to celebrate the new year, the days’ festivities — put on by the Quiet Resorts Charitable Foundation — will start out with the annual Hair of the Dog 5K and 10K oceanfront and boardwalk run.
The race and day’s events will include live music from D.J. Padraig and, as always, will include overall and age group awards and a post-race party at Mango’s on the Bethany Beach boardwalk, with beer and food donated by local restaurants.
To commemorate the race’s fifth year, participants will also receive a free insulated race tumbler provided by Burnzy’s Bar & Grill. As with prior events, racers are also being encouraged to dress up in festive costumes for the event and feel free to run the 5K with a four-legged friend.
Property owners may be interested in a moratorium on hotels, even if they were dissatisfied by Fenwick Island Town Council rejecting a homeowner petition and increasing hotel/motel room density.
After a rocky 2015 election, the Town of Fenwick Island is being proactive on voter registration. The Ad-Hoc Election Committee met Dec. 4 to begin educating residents and property owners.
The August election is over, so Councilwoman Julie Lee, committee chair, wants to focus on educating voters for next summer’s municipal election.
With some legal help, Fenwick Island residents have created a petition that could crush the proposed motel zoning ordinance.
A Dec. 4 public hearing was held on a zoning amendment that could allow existing hotels/motels to increase density to one sleeping room per 600 square feet of land. (Future hotels/motels would be limited to the current 1,000-square-foot limit.)
This Friday, the people will have the floor, but they’ll be discussing beds.
The Fenwick Island Town Council will host a public hearing at Town Hall on Friday, Dec. 4, at 2:30 p.m., regarding room density in hotels and motels.
Room density is based on lot size. The town code currently allows hotels/motels to have one sleeping room per 1,000 square feet of overall land.
It’s time to bundle up, grab some hot chocolate and prepare those Christmas lists, and local towns will welcome the holiday season with the annual Christmas parades.
Just because beach towns are less likely to see a white Christmas doesn’t mean they shouldn’t sing for one.
Fenwick Island is inviting residents and neighbors to a holiday gathering at the town park on Friday, Dec. 11. People can enjoy caroling, the tree lighting and hors d’oeuvres from 6 to 9 p.m.
Fenwick Island’s new personnel program will help employees in need, starting with a town police officer and his baby boy.
Town Council had a special meeting Nov. 5 just to consider and approve a Donated Leave Program.
Hotelier warns against restricting growth
The Fenwick Island Town Council has backed off its original proposal to increase permitted hotel room density in the town. On Oct. 23, they approved, 5-2, the first reading of an ordinance that allows only existing hotels to increase density, to one sleeping room per 600 square feet of land.
Public hearing postponed
When it comes to hotels, Fenwick Island is trying to find a way to make everyone happy.
The town council will consider a new ordinance on Oct. 23 that would allow the Sands Motel to have a higher density than it does now but limit any future hotels to the current, more restrictive code.
Fenwick Island’s Business Development Committee took a look at the summer season for past improvements and future ideas.