1. The cancelation of the performances of the “Foreigner” at Washington College was a major disappointment to many alumni, who challenged the administration’s decision to cancel because of depictions of the villans in KKK costumes. The administration argued that the quality of student life is harmed when any group is made to feel marginalized. Those who voiced objections to the decision were adamant that the college environment is exactly the venue to discuss xenophobia and address America’s racist past.
2. In October, Chestertown’s Mayor Chris Cerino discussed ideas to reduce the cost of local policing, either by reducing the number of officers or putting the Chestertown Police Department under control of the Kent County Sheriff’s Office. CPD takes up a large chunk of the Town budget and in recent years has been blamed for diverting money away from other priorities.
3. At the beginning of the year, the Chestertown Council was split on whether to approve a permit for a gay pride event downtown. The permit was approved in a 3-2 vote but the legacy of intolerance and prejudice echoed through the council chamber.
4. A recent story on retail store vacancies in Chestertown got a lot of traffic. For years vacant storefronts at Kent Plaza and Washington Square shopping centers have become common in what is supposed to be a booming economy.
5. Verizon’s shoddy cell service downtown has been a frustration for several years and the wireless giant continued to tell the Spy that upgrades were on the way “to fill the hole in service.” In December, Verizon pushed back the upgrades for a third time and said the upgrades would be completed in early 2020.
1. After a few years of suffering the loss of several popular dining venues, including the beloved Brooks Tavern, Blue Heron, and the Lemon Leaf, a culinary renaissance started to take place. The very first of this new wave began with the opening this spring of 98 Cannon Street, former home of the Fish Whistle and the Old Wharf restaurant, located at the town’s new marina.
2. Giant Squash. When Cindy Quinn of Still Pond planted one corner of her vegetable garden with squash last June, she had no notion what a big surprise she was in for. A real big surprise.
3. Chestertown Farmers Market manager Sabine Harvey resigned in September, following a dispute with a vendor. As a result of the incident, the Chestertown Council unanimously voted to expel the vendor for disrespectful conduct toward a customer and Harvey.
4. Is a new Bay Bridge coming to Kent County? A standing-room crowd at the Chestertown Firehouse in January answered with a resounding “No.”
5. One of the best highlights of the Eastern Shore Land Conservancy’s recent conference on traffic and public transportation last year, and there were many, was the discovery that Washington College was very close to offering a shared mobility program in Chestertown with the addition of an electric charging station.
1. Contentious Crossing. The impact of a third span on the Eastern Shore will be monumental. Residential and commercial development will follow. Environmental effects will be severe. Quality of life, though an overused term, will take an irreversible blow, wrote columnist Howard Freelander.
2. The Power of Love. One of my favorite John Cheever stories is the tale of The Worm in the Apple. It’s about a family (the Crutchmans) who are all so outwardly happy and loving that the narrator assumes there must be a worm hiding in their apple. He searches through all the nooks and crannies of their lives, lifts every little tea doily looking for the telltale dust bunny that would prove that not all was as spotless as it seemed, but try as he might, he isn’t able to find the worm in their apple, wrote Jamie Kirkpatrick.
3. Invasion of the K-Cups. Last Thanksgiving our family were all seated at the dinner table. Leighton, my very bright teenaged granddaughter, and I both like coffee. We were talking that day about different brands and how we make coffee in the morning.
I said that I had a Keurig coffeemaker that makes one cup. It sits in my studio. Every morning after I’ve had my first up of half and half during breakfast, I go over to my studio to write. I make a second cup there with the Kuerig – industrial-strength, seriously caffeinated. Sometimes, when I have a need to become wired, I’ll have a second cup, wrote George Merrill.
4. Love is love. There are moments when we are lucky enough to see just how much work we still have to do. These are the times that galvanize us out of the complacency of believing “it’s different here,” or “it’s different now.” They are shocking and distressing, but we should appreciate these moments because they are preferable to the dull stagnancy of accepting a status quo as invisible as the air we breathe or, even worse, the quiet erosive slide of regression, wrote Maria Wood.
5. The Getaway. Winter had us in its icy grip. Like actors midway through a performance, we needed a change of scene. Like bank robbers with satchels full of cash, we needed a quick getaway. But where to go? The Caribbean would be too expensive; Florida, too far. Three couples in search of just one night away: maybe a little retail therapy, certainly a good glass of wine, a tasty meal, a cozy fire…, wrote Jamie Kirkpatrick.
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