WEEKEND #15, 2019
(Labor Day Weekend)
Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
ONLY 18 DAYS TO DEWEY BEACH ELECTION DAY 2019!
Newcomer Philip Rowe is trying to make the case that the incumbents in Dewey Beach have failed to act in many cases on critical issues facing the town including everything from infrastructure to expensive consultant reports. But the incumbents disagree and fought back on several of his challenges during Saturday's 90-minute forum. His success will depend on his ability to convince the town's voters in less than three weeks.
The four candidates -- Rowe, on the left, with Comm. Dale Cooke, Mayor TJ Redefer and Comm. Paul Bauer -- debated and discussed the issues this past holiday weekend at the Dewey Beach Civic League's annual candidate forum held at the Dewey Beach Lions Club. The event was thoughtfully catered, once again, by Steve "Monty" Montgomery of The Starboard!
Topics of concern to town voters this year include bar violence, accommodation/occupancy tax, economic development, expanding the beach tax (the town's only "property" tax) to cover the bayside beaches, short/long-term town goals, the budget, the recent police consultant report, financial planning, critical infrastructure, parking, litigation, sea-level rise, among others.
The following day, the three incumbents held a rally at Grotto Pizza. They were accompanied by the Hon. Kathy McGuiness, state auditor, and Sen. Ernesto Lopez, who also attended the candidate forum.
Despite The Starboard featuring the popular Amish Outlaws at virtually the same time, they had a respectable showing.
Mayor Redefer and Comm. Bauer are running as a team. But why was Comm. Cooke there if he says he is running a completely independent campaign? In his defense, Comm. Cooke said Mayor Redefer and Comm. Bauer invited him to attend. He would attend Rowe's events as well if he were invited.
Rowe is asking voters to "bullet vote" for him as he sees that as his only path to victory.
Election day in Dewey Beach is Saturday, September 21, 2019. Please see the town's website for info on absentee voting which begins today!
Stay tuned to WGMD and WGMD.com for more Dewey Beach campaign news in the coming days.
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MYSTERIOUS GAS ODOR RETURNS TO REHOBOTH-DEWEY AREA
For the second time since May, officials in the Rehoboth-Dewey area investigated reports of a gas odor this past Saturday morning. The calls came from Delaware Avenue, Bellevue Street, Ocean Drive, Cape Henlopen State Park, Canal Pointe, the Henlopen condo, among other locations, between 11 a.m. and noon.
The obvious candidate would be a tanker off the coast or in the Delaware Bay. According to the Rehoboth DEOS weather station, from 10 a.m. to noon, wind direction was from the northeast or north-northeast at about 5.5 m.p.h. This could favor the theory that the odor originated from a vessel north of Lewes, perhaps in the Big Stone Anchorage which is popular among tankers.
Although not a perfect source of ship-tracking data, looking at tankers that transmitted Automatic Identification System (AIS) info on Saturday in this area reveals only four tankers -- all crude oil tankers (probably not the likely source) -- the Nordic Cross, Unity Venture, Eagle Toledo and Sea Garnet.
Capt. Douglas Messeck of the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police said on Saturday that he had checked from the Indian River Inlet to Rehoboth while one of his colleagues checked from Lewes around noon and "we found no odors nor any shipping traffic in those areas."
Petty Officer Ronald Hodges, a spokesman for the Coast Guard, also said that he had not received any reports of gas odors in this area on Saturday. Officials had also checked with 9-1-1 call centers in Cape May County and Cumberland County in New Jersey, neither of which reported any gas odor complaints.
A similar round of gas odor complaints was reported on June 23 in Ocean City and also in early May in the Rehoboth-Dewey area. While a nearby vessel remains the obvious culprit, pinning it down is challenging!
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THE "FORGOTTEN MILE," A BIT BRIGHTER THIS PAST WEEKEND
If it looked a bit brighter on Coastal Highway between Rehoboth and Dewey this past weekend, it probably was. After this WGMD report two weeks ago concerning more than a dozen overhead street lamps that had gone dark, almost all have been repaired.
Since that report, Louise Holt, DelDOT spokeswoman, says that her agency has addressed multiple lights on the Coastal Highway corridor, including the set of three between where pedestrians were struck and killed on May 17 (Rehoboth Avenue-Extended) and August 11 (Church Street).
Holt said the street lamps on the side of the poles closer to Dewey are owned by the power company, not DelDOT. Timothy Stokes, Delmarva Power spokesman, said this past week that his company located 12 lights that were Delmarva Power lights in this area. Maintenance on these lights was completed this past week.
There has not been active lighting across the bridge over the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal, Holt pointed out. But three metal poles, each with two lamps, have been installed in the median as part of the ongoing bridge rehabilitation project. This is an especially dark section of the Forgotten Mile.
"Lighting [fixtures] on the approaches and across the bridge are being addressed as part of the bridge rehabilitation project," she said. The project is targeted for completion by May, 2020. Important info regarding this project, including a bicycle detour, is covered in this DelDOT pamphlet.
Both DelDOT and Delmarva Power encourage people to report dark street lamps using either the DelDOT app or Delmarva Power app. Stokes notes that Delmarva Power street lights, unlike DelDOT's, are labeled with a 10-digit coordinate number on the pole and often end with the letters DPL.
Delmarva Power, Stokes says, is installing intelligent street lamps in Wilmington with sensors that inform the utility if a lamp is in need of repair. "This is something we would definitely like to do more of with our city partners and Wilmington is our first attempt at using this smart-city technology," he added.
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DEAD DOLPHIN WASHES UP AT DEAUVILLE BEACH IN REHOBOTH
It looked almost like the remains of an alligator that had washed to shore this past Wednesday morning, says Tony Crivella, who took this photo on the beach in the Deauville area of Rehoboth.
Suzanne Thurman, MERR Institute executive director, says the skeletal remains appear to be that of a bottlenose dolphin. But city public works crews had buried the remains before her organization could examine it. The skull, she notes, is obviously that of a dolphin.
There has been little other MERR news this past week. Thurman said there were no new sightings on the seal reported last week in Lewes Harbor.
"This has been a busy summer with a higher-than-normal number of dolphin Strandings," she pointed out. "We have responded to 170 animals so far this year, and would like to thank all of the concerned citizens who care enough to take the time to report them to us. Every stranded animal teaches us something about their species and about what we are doing to impact their lives in their ocean habitat," she added.
Photo courtesy Tony Crivella of Dewey Beach Preservation & Raking
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MAN DROWNS IN OCEAN CITY SURF
Becomes first and only death this season in O.C. surf
According to the medical examiner, the 76-year-old New York man who was pulled from the surf off 16th Street last Sunday, August 25, in cardiac arrest, died from accidental drowning.
Capt. Butch Arbin of the Ocean City Beach Patrol said the victim was a non-swimmer who suffered from other medical issues. He was reportedly knocked down by a wave. Rescuers pulled him from the water just before 5 p.m., started CPR and attempted to resuscitate him using a defibrillator. But he remained in cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead at the hospital.
More details are in the Maryland Coast Dispatch.
Photo courtesy Campos Media
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MAN CRASHES SCOOTER AT TRAFFIC CIRCLE
Two men had been riding motor scooters (mopeds) around 5:45 p.m. Saturday when one of them jumped the curb at the Rehoboth Avenue traffic circle, crashed and injured himself. Within five minutes, Rehoboth Avenue traffic backed up all the way to 2nd Street!
He was taken to the hospital with minor injuries and the other man was given a field sobriety test. No word yet from police on any charges.
HOME NEAR LEWES DESTROYED BY FIRE
Firefighters were called to the 35200 block of Acadia Lane in the Coastal Club Community after flames burst out just before 8:40 p.m. Monday. That is off Beaver Dam Road near Lewes.
Arriving firefighters reported fire on the porch area that was quickly extending to the rest of a single-family home. Occupants were also reportedly safely out of the house. It took about an hour to bring the blaze under control.
Updates to this story will be posted on WGMD.com as more info becomes available.
Photo courtesy Luke S
PARKING IN REHOBOTH AFTER LABOR DAY? READ THIS...
Parking permits are required through September 15
The parking permit season in Rehoboth Beach now extends to the second Sunday after Labor Day, just like the parking meters.
Parking permits are required daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in all non-metered areas within the city. All parking permits also allow for parking at Deauville Beach. See the city's website for details.
Rehoboth Beach restaurants will feature music and specials on September 16, which is being dubbed "MeterLESS Monday," to mark the first day of free parking. Details are on the Rehobothfoodie website.
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"PIPING OUT" RETURNS TO REHOBOTH BEACH!
More than 60 people turned out early Monday evening to help the Rehoboth Beach Historical Society revive an old town tradition, the piping-out musical boardwalk parade!
Revelers with various musical instruments assembled on the boardwalk at the Henlopen Hotel and marched down the boardwalk to Rehoboth Avenue led by Nick Nichols, band leader and trombonist.
Although records are ambiguous, a RBHS news release points out that the "piping out" tradition was thought to have originated in the mid-to-late-1950's by the late-bandleader Sammy Ferro whose orchestra played for dances held at the old Henlopen Hotel. At the last dance of the summer on Labor Day, Ferro would take his band "to the boards," followed by his audience, and then lead a spontaneous musical parade to Rehoboth Avenue.
Photos courtesy David Koster, PortraitsInTheSand.com
Welcome to The Starboard!
IS THIS THE END OF DRAG VOLLEYBALL?
By Guillermo Silveira
It was the Golden Girls vs. the 1950's Housewives at Rehoboth Beach's annual Labor Day Weekend drag volleyball tournament this past Sunday. The match reminded us of the strength and vital forces that our beloved Golden Girls and the memorable gorgeous 1950's Housewives played in American history.
With sarcastic humor and elegance the teams honored generations, not only with extravagant fashion, but with their artistic talents!
They were outstanding and glamorous as their performances were exquisite!
The Golden Girls, thanks to their lifetime experience, won the tournament, 25 to 19!
Gratefully applauded by our excellent and open-minded community, Rehoboth Drag Volleyball became the funniest popular public event in town!
ISNER RETURNS TO GALLERY 50 WITH COMICS COUTURE
The popular Terry Isner returned to Gallery 50 this past holiday weekend with, Comics Couture, his third show at the gallery in the past four years. Isner, a pop artist, is well known for his mixed-media artwork. He is a master of taking classic comic books, using them as a foundation for his art and storytelling by combining them with acrylic and spray paint, pen and ink and his vintage decoupage.
"It is multiple ways in which I can tell that story on such a flat surface, and give it depth and it seems to work well in this medium," he explains, referring to the three years of evolution of this series. "It seems to grow nicely and I think this year really fit beautifully into where we are socially, and the changes which we are experiencing now culturally," he said.
The stories in some way relate to either the power of the individual or the idea that, for example, Wonder Woman does not need Superman's help. "She's handled the whole situation on her own," he observes! "You look at them in the time frame which these appear," he said. "That is really interesting. You got a woman in a bra who is grenade fighting, it is all just so interesting," he added.
"In this one I really wanted to bring in the idea of street art," he explained. "I wanted to have that tagging feel... If you look around, things drip. It has to give that street art feel to it," he points out.
The twist this year, he states, is high fashion. Batman is lined in Gucci, for example, while Wonder Woman is sporting Louis Vuitton. "As I have done in every show," he says, "I love to match up brands with things."
"I love some of those stories," Isner says, referring to the Comic book plots. "Some of those stories like... fighting the Ku Klux Klan in 1977 is a pretty intense story to be put out in comic books in 1977," he points out. "This allows somebody like you to see how these things were so powerful and they are relevant today because we are in the exact same situation" with regard to bigotry, racism, etc.
"These comic books and stories are so relevant today because of where we are in society, where we are politically, where we are socially," he observes. "If you look back and think that we fought these same issues in 1938, in the 40's, in the 60's, in the 70's and we are again dealing with racism, and bigotry, and suppression and all these crazy things that you cannot look at one another and accept them for who they are. This show helps do that. Heroes are always an outcast and we are in that world of wanting more acception and inclusion and diversity and the heroes represent so much of that. That's what I really wanted to get out of the show this year," he added.
Isner's work will be on display at Gallery 50 through September 19.
THIS IS THE LAST WEEKEND UPDATE FOR 2019!
Special thanks to our friends, especially those like Suzanne Siney, and her sister, Carolyn Portanova, who were kind to invite us to their Labor Day celebration.
We hope all of you have had a good summer and holiday weekend. Thank you for your continued support. Please keep the emails, photos, articles, announcements and news releases coming. Many thanks to our sponsors, photographers, contributors and WGMD Radio!
We welcome sponsors and partners for 2020. Please write or call if you have an idea or proposal! If you spot us on the street or beach, please stop us to say "hi!"
With best wishes,
PHOTOS OF THE WEEK
A murmuration of starlings over Cape Henlopen State Park...
Welcome to Rehoboth Beach!
Photos courtesy Dr. Richard Tananis, Peggy Douglas and David Koster, PortraitsInTheSand.com
MAN CHARGED AFTER HE CRASHES LEXUS THROUGH BIKE SHOP STOREFRONT--- State police have charged a 60-year-old man with careless driving after he crashed a 2001 Lexus SUV through the window of Seacycle Studio just before noon this past Wednesday. MCpl. Melissa Jaffe, state police spokeswoman, says he was entering a parking space on Tenley Court outside Lewes and failed to apply the brakes and ran into the Seacycle Studio. No injuries were reported, she said, and the building was cleared and deemed safe. Photos are in the Cape Gazette.
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