WEEKEND #12, 2020

Rehoboth Beach, Delaware

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Election analysis by Hoyte Decker

Was Saturday's election outcome a surprise to you? Putting aside the regrettable vitriol and sleaze, the results turned out to be pretty much in line with the outcomes of the last three elections. You could call it 60/40. Let's take a look at the statistics.

The historic take-down of Sam Cooper three years ago was the closest of the last four races. And it extended to all but one of the other contests -- Kathy McGuiness' probable "world" record of garnering 70 percent of the commissioner vote! Paul Kuhns got 58 percent to Sam's 41 percent, while the second place commissioner vote went to Lisa Schlosser, 54 percent, ahead of Susan Gay's 48 percent third-place finish.

The 2018 race featured wins for commissioner slots by Dick Byrne, 60 percent, and Pat Coluzzi, 53 percent; Gary Glass trailed at 47 percent. Last year, Susan Gay stormed back grabbing almost 60 percent of ballots cast, while Ed Chrzanowski still managed to take the second seat with only 33 percent of the votes. Three other commissioner hopefuls were left with the crumbs.

So when we look at this year's numbers, it's not really surprising. Stan Mills captured 60 percent of the vote, the same margin as prior years' winners, leaving Paul Kuhns, 40 percent, a one-term mayor. Down the line, the commissioner tally was right around 60/40 winner/loser for the four contenders.

As to why the candidates won or lost? I ain't going there!

Hoyte Decker

Despite the enormous number of absentee ballots, 1146 this year, election officials had the ballots counted and totals ready for release shortly after the polls closed on Saturday. Here is Wayne Steele, election inspector, reading the results at 6:15 p.m.

Here are Steele's totals. Jay Lagree, Stan Mills and Patrick Gossett had won. They posed for the traditional victory photo in front of the convention center.

Here are the 2020 election totals:

Registered voters for 2020: 1731 (230 more than 2019)
Number of voters: 325
Number of absentee voters: 1146
Total voters: 1471 (85 percent of registered voters; 16 percent more than 2019)



The winners will be sworn-in at the commissioner meeting on Friday, September 18, and will serve three-year terms.


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When Mayor-Elect Stan Mills takes office in September, he will become the 29th person to serve as the city's mayor. This is the plaque listing the previous mayors as it had appeared in the old city hall.

Joseph D. Thompson, 1903-1905
A. W. Dick, 1905-1906
T. W. Palmer, 1906-1909
H. S. Newman, 1909-1910
Walter Burton, 1910-1911 *
E. B. Riley, 1911-1912
Fred A. Ross, 1912-1914 *
Dr. William Messick, 1914-1915
Walter Burton, 1915-1917 *
Fred O. Williams, 1917-1918
Dr. Walter P. Robinson, 1918-1923
J. Harry Satterfield, 1923-1927
Ralph M. Wingate, 1927-1929
Henry W. Conant, 1929-1930
Ralph D. Poynter, 1930-1933
Fred. A. Ross, 1933-1937 *
J. Arthur Downing, 1937-1946 *
Col. Edgar S. Stayer, 1946-1947
Col. C. B. Shaffer, 1947-1949
J. Authur Downing, 1949-1951 *
Robert D. Thompson, 1951-1955
Clarence K. Lynch, 1955-1961
Juel C. Stamper, 1961-1966
Dr. Lester F. Johnson, 1966-1973
Col. Reed A. Booth, 1973-1975
Miriam MciLvaine Howard, 1975-1981
John A. Hughes, 1981-1987
Kimber E. Vought, 1987-1990
Samuel R. Cooper, 1990-2017
Paul G. Kuhns, 2017-2020
Stanley A. Mills, Jr., 2020-

Three mayors -- Walter Burton, J. Arthur Downing and Fred A. Ross -- were each re-elected after having left office.


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Rehoboth property owners spent last week assessing the damage left by Tropical Storm Isaias which will probably go down as one of the most destructive in recent Rehoboth history with its 30+ m.p.h. sustained winds.

According to the Rehoboth DEOS weather station, the winds last Tuesday peaked around 10 a.m. with a 60 m.p.h. gust. The town received less than a half-inch of rain the entire day, so flooding was not a problem.

Trees and tree limbs, lots of them, snapped like matchsticks during the storm knocking out power to customers as well as traffic signals, and crashing into buildings and vehicles.

This photo was taken near Funland around 9:25 a.m. as the storm blew across Delmarva. The rough surf ate away at the beach leaving a cliff, but amazingly, not much sand was lost.

Photo courtesy Bill Henschke

Firefighters responded to this home on Dunbar Street in West Rehoboth around noon after it was struck by the tree. The 93-year-old male occupant was uninjured but was taken by an ambulance to the hospital because the home was badly damaged and he needed a place to stay.

Rehoboth Beach street crews spent much of last week removing storm debris, and their work continues this week.

This is Terrace Road near Silver Lake. A high-tension feeder line was severed when these trees fell.

Photo courtesy Sandy Neverett

Many traffic signals lost power and switched to "flash" mode. This one in Dewey was left dangling from its power cable.

Fortunately, nobody was injured when a huge tree smashed this pickup truck on Dodds Lane in Henlopen Acres. It had been parked on the grounds of the Indian and Pioneer Cemetery.

Photo courtesy Evan Stoddard


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Fireboats from both sides of the Delaware Bay responded Saturday morning after a 36-foot sport fishing boat burst into flames. Smoke was visible for miles shortly after the fire was reported around 9 a.m., about seven to nine miles northwest of Cape May Point.

Good Samaritan vessels were among the first to radio for help and go to assist. Initial reports suggested that a vessel simply was experiencing mechanical problems. But reports minutes later suggested the fire came from a commercial vessel, possibly the ferry, a dredge or dredging equipment. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dredge McFarland has been operating in the area and was among the first to call for help.

Fireboats from Lewes, Slaughter Beach, South Bowers, Bowers, Little Creek, along with the Coast Guard, came to assist the Town Bank VFC fireboat, whose crew posted this photo on Facebook of what remained of the sport fishing vessel.

After about an hour, the vessel, believed to be named "The Seven Seas," burned to the waterline and was completely submerged. A Coast Guard spokesman says both boaters were safely rescued by the Good Samaritan vessels.

Photos courtesy Town Bank VFC


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Megan Schaller says her father, Tim, took these amazing photos of a gaggle of Canada Geese wobbling from Rehoboth's Lake Gerar to the beach just south of the Henlopen Hotel.

Assateague may have wild ponies commingling with beach visitors, but now Rehoboth has its Canada Geese to welcome beach visitors.

"They were there all day from mid-morning (at least) 'til late afternoon," Megan said. They seemed to blend in comfortably with the other beach goers, almost as if they thought they were human.

They also seemed to enjoy just sitting at the edge of the surf like other beach visitors.

Megan says these might be the same geese that had grown up at Lake Gerar this summer. They were featured as "photos of the week" back in Weekend #3.

Photos courtesy Megan and Tim Schaller


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While the Bidens with their Secret Service detail have been regulars in North Shores this past summer mainly on weekends, we have seen little of them in public. So it sort of leaves one puzzled when Peter Doocy from Fox News, of all networks, catches a video snippet of Joe Biden confidently biking like a pro and talking like he has made a decision on his V.P. pick.

Might this be part of a strategy to overcome the "Basement Joe" image that the President has been promoting? Watch the entire five-second interview on Twitter. ABC News reports that Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer had met with Biden the previous weekend in North Shores. Read more in the NY Daily News.



This wallet was lost while biking in the Henlopen Acres area on Sunday. Inside are a student ID and some cash. Please call Evan Stoddard at 610-570-4329 if found.


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A look inside: Delaware Beach Life August 2020 issue



Unidentified dragonfly by Mayor-Elect Stan Mills...

Lots of jellies on Prospect Street on Sunday by Robert Nowak...

Deer on my yard on Henlopen Avenue by Lynne Bowman...

Osprey family on Rehoboth Bay at Savages Ditch by Diane Scobey...

Saturday moonrise over ocean in Dewey by Kevin Moss, shot through a monocular with iPhone adapter...




MERR NEWS--- Suzanne Thurman from the MERR Institute says that once again her organization had no mammal or sea turtle strandings or death investigations last week despite the tropical storm.


EXTENDED BOOM FALLS ON CONSTRUCTION WORKER--- A 41-year-old man suffered a compound fracture to his lower leg after a fully-extended crane fell on him at the construction site on Warrington Road for the new Beebe surgical center. The accident happened around 8 a.m. last Thursday. He was conscious when taken to the hospital.


INVESTIGATION AFTER BONES FOUND IN SLAUGHTER BEACH--- What looked like a spine and hip bone were located around noon last Friday on Slaughter Beach partially exposed in the sand. After a couple hours of investigation, Cpl. Jason Hatchell, state police spokesman, says "The bones were determined not to be human by a forensic anthropologist."


WOMAN BITTEN BY SNAKE, MAYBE--- A woman was outside by a swimming pool when she reached for a towel, felt a sharp pain in her toe and saw what looked like a snake slithering quickly away. It happened around 7 p.m. on Saturday at a residence on John J. Williams Highway near Holly Lakes. The 50-year-old woman was taken to the hospital with good vitals.


FEMALE PASSENGER INJURED IN MOTORCYCLE CRASH IN O.C.--- A 31-year-old woman riding as a passenger on a motorcycle was thrown from the bike when it was struck by another vehicle around 10:20 p.m. on Saturday. She was briefly unconscious and suffered cuts to her head and legs. The state police helicopter flew her to a trauma center. It happened at 21st Street and Philadelphia Avenue in Ocean City. Police made at least one arrest at the scene.


POLICE INVESTIGATE INFANT DEATH IN ROXANA--- A two-week-old infant was taken to the hospital early Sunday after the baby was discovered in cardiac arrest. It was reported around 3:25 a.m. at a residence on Deer Run Road near Plumb Blossom Lane in the Roxana area. The baby was pronounced dead at the hospital. Cpl. Jason Hatchell, state police spokesman, said later Sunday that this is currently an active and ongoing investigation and he did not have information to release at this time.


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News photos that make beaches look like Covid hotspots

WGMD celebrates 40-year anniversary

Senator Coons mentions Snyder's Candy and Cape Gazette in Congress

County's first Black fire chief becomes Milton's first Black police chief

Overnight openings of Lewes/Rehoboth drawbridges planned this week for testing

Delaware Bay lighthouses (good drone video)

The most expensive summer destinations in the U.S. (Rehoboth #9?)

The Golden Age of Rehoboth Beach: The Railroad Era and Beyond (video)

Rehoboth police tired of encountering belligerence while trying to enforce mandate

Rehoboth police charge Millsboro man with 5th DUI

Rehoboth Beach installing new wayfinding signage

Lake Gerar gosling euthanized after consuming too much human food

Century-old Shell House near Silver Lake, 2 Penn St., torn down

Dewey lighthouse owner sues insurers after suspicious fire

Dewey Lifesaving Station to get new roof

Bethany offers 'Free Parking Tuesday Evenings' in August

Boaters thrown from boat by wake from White Marlin boat traffic



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