Galena remembers Harry Pisapia

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Galena said goodbye to former mayor Harry J. Pisapia today at services at St. Dennis Catholic Church.  He died on August 4 at the age of 75.  Harry had just completed a final four-year council term in June, also serving as vice-mayor. Harry was a great Galena cheerleader, where he raised his family with his late wife Caroline and ran his Nationwide insurance agency.

He was active in all parts of the community’s life even before joining the town council and serving as mayor from 1992-2013. He would return to the council two years later and serve his final term.

“Harry put his heart and soul into the Town of Galena,” remarked current mayor John Carroll, who first met the late mayor over a decade ago when he moved to the town where he operates several businesses. Pointing not only to the nuts and bolts of running the town, but spearheading important community events such as the annual September 11 Remembrance program.

Carroll said that Pisapia was much more than Galena.  He was a past-president of the Maryland Municipal League, the lobbying arm of municipal governments.

“He put real time in to making sure that the interests of the ‘tiny towns’ were protected and promoted,” referencing the power struggle between the interests of big city members, such as Salisbury or Annapolis, and the towns with populations under 1000 that represent 75 percent of the MML membership.

“I butted heads with Harry often, but in the end we always worked together to find acceptable compromise,” Carroll remembered. “And even if we weren’t happy with the compromise, we remained friends and bonded. I will miss his advice and friendship.”

The Town will dedicate this year’s September 11 Remembrance and annual Veteran’s Day programs to Harry Pisapia.

Special Olympics Kayak Championship Starts This Weekend on the Chester River

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Special Olympics coach Jack Brosius addressed the Chestertown Council on the upcoming Special Olympics state kayak championships, to be held on the Chester River Aug. 10 and 24.

Brosius gave a brief history of his involvement in kayaking, beginning with his participation in the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany. He has been coaching since 1976. He retired to the Chestertown area in 2003, when one of his neighbors recruited him as a Special Olympics coach. In addition to kayaking, he coaches powerlifting and swimming.

Jack Brosius, Special Olympics coach, at the Chestertown Council Aug. 5

The state competition will be held over two weekends. On Saturday, Aug. 10, there will be time trials to determine heats for the competition. Special Olympics rules limit the number of competitors in a heat to six, who must have trial times within 10 percent of one another from fastest to slowest, “so that everyone has a fair chance,” Brosius said. Each event may have as many as 15 to 20 heats, depending on the number who want to participate.

Saturday, Aug. 24 is the statewide championship. Races are held at four distances: 100, 200, 500 and 1,000 meters. Medals are awarded for the top three in each heat, with ribbons for the other three finishers. Most of the competitors are individual paddlers in single kayaks, but there are also events for “unified teams,” in which a person without special needs teams with a person with special needs.

This will be the 8th year that the championships will be held at the Washington College boathouse. This is “a premier facility,” matched only by the multi-million dollar Olympic competition sites in Gainesville, Ga., Oklahoma City and Long Beach, Cal., Brosius said.

“We are expecting about 150 athletes from across the state of Maryland, plus 18 to 20 from Pennsylvania, where there is no such Special Olympics kayaking program,” Brosius said. There will also be another 100 coaches and supporters, plus 30 to 40 volunteers to run the events.

Brosius thanked Washington College for supporting the Special Olympics kayak events, as well as allowing the swimmers in the summer program to train in its pool. The college also hosts the annual Special Olympics high school unified sports statewide bocce tournament at Kirby Stadium each May. The tournament brings in about 175 high school students with special needs, who are teamed with athletes without special needs.

“We are currently working with about 30 athletes from this area,” who take part in swimming, cycling, kayaking, and powerlifting, he said. About two-thirds of the local athletes compete in the Special Olympics, and the program remains open to anyone with special needs who wishes to participate. The athletes cover an age range from 11 to 50, he said, with a wide range of special needs. Many are clients of Kent Center. The program tries to make its activities affordable for all, raising funds to cover the costs of insurance, equipment, uniforms, and other needs. The national Special Olympics program does not provide funds for the local programs, which are dependent on grants and donations from their communities.

The programs are also dependent on many volunteers – “we can always use more,” Brosius said. He thanked members of the Washington College swim team and the Sho’men junior swim team, who work with the Special Olympic swimmers.

Pat Cullinan, regional director of the Northern Chesapeake region of Special Olympics Maryland

Brosius then introduced Pat Cullinan, the regional director for Special Olympics of Maryland, who gave an overview of the program and its goals.

Cullinan said he had been a Special Olympics volunteer for 20 years before becoming a staff member of the state organization, responsible for the programs in the Northern Chesapeake region, including Harford, Cecil, and Kent counties. He noted that Special Olympics, founded 51 years ago by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, is now an international organization with programs in 172 countries. He quoted the program’s mission, “to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.” Though the original focus was –and still is– on those with intellectual challenges, athletes with physical disabilities are also welcome.

The program’s goal in Kent County “is simply to grow and advance the county organization,” Cullinan said. He expressed gratitude for Brosius’s years of service, calling him “the face of Special Olympics in Kent County.” He went on to give a summary of the program’s efforts to reach those with special needs at an early age, starting as young as three years old and progressing through school into adulthood “to age 80.”

Cullinan stressed the program’s need for volunteers. “The people we need to build this organization are here. It’s just a matter of them becoming aware of the program” and identifying a fit for their interests and talents. He said the goal was also to recruit more athletes and to make more sports and “higher quality and more frequent” competitions available to them. He said he had met with Sheriff John Price and Police Chief Adrian Baker to discuss participation in the Law Enforcement Torch Run, in which law officers carry a torch from county to county to raise awareness of Special Olympics. He also mentioned the annual Polar Bear Plunge, a winter fundraiser for the program held at Sandy Point State Park.

Mayor Chris Cerino asked about details of the kayaking championships. Brosius said the event begins at 9:30 a.m., with opening ceremonies at 10. College President Kurt Landgraf will give the opening speech, after which the competition will go until 5 or 6 p.m. He said it would be especially helpful to have some additional volunteers near the end of the afternoon when those who had been there all day are losing energy. “When you work with these athletes, you never forget the experience,” he said.

“It’s a great thing,” said Cerino. “I would encourage everyone here to check it out.” Anyone who would like to volunteer either for the upcoming events or for future activities should visit the Maryland Special Olympics website or contact Brosius at jack.rosincreek@gmail.com.

Picture Gallery of Special Olympics Bocce Tournament at Washington College, May 2018 – Photos by Jane Jewell.

Special Olympics Bocce Tournament at Washington College May 2018 – Kent County Special Olympics Coach Jack Brosius at far right in blue. – Photo by Jane Jewell

Getting ready!  Special Olympics Bocce Tournament at Washington College May 2018 – Photo by Jane Jewell

This shows the special equipment developed to help some physically challenged athletes participate. – Photo by Jane Jewell

Special Olympics Bocce Tournament at Washington College May 2018 . – Photo by Jane Jewell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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David M. Williams, 82, was Chestertown Attorney

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Kent County native David M McKivitt Williams, 82, was buried today at Chestertown Cemetery. He died on Saturday, August 3, 2019 at Chester River Manor. Born on June 1, 1937, he was the son of the late Henry Thomas Williams and Lorraine Urie Francis. He grew up in Baltimore County where he graduated from Milford Mills High School class in 1955. He received a B.A. from the University of Maryland class of 1960.

After serving in the U.S. Army, he went on to study at the University of Baltimore Law School. He graduated in 1966. During law school he served as a bailiff for John Grayson, Circuit Court Judge of Baltimore County. He also worked for the Title Guarantee Company of Baltimore. After being admitted to the Maryland Bar, Williams served as Assistant States Attorney for St. Mary’s County.

He eventually returned to Kent County where he specialized in personal injury, workers compensation, and criminal defense. Williams was a well-respected trial attorney who with his former law partner, the late James J. White, won many storied trials and significant judgments for plaintiffs.

He is survived by a daughter, Lori Williams; a sister-in-law, Lynne Williams of Rock Hall, two nephews, one niece and several cousins. He was predeceased by his brother, H. Thomas Williams in 2002.

Main Street Chestertown Launches Fundraising for July 4th 2020 Fireworks

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The Board of Directors of Main Street Chestertown voted at its August meeting to work with community members and local businesses to bring July Fourth fireworks back for the 2020 holiday.  Partnering with Chestertown resident Kiley Shipp, who has been working through social media to encourage donations, the nonprofit organization has set a goal of $10,000 to cover the Town’s costs of a traditional fireworks display over the Chester River.

As part of cost-cutting for the 2019 municipal budget, the Mayor and Council omitted funding for this year’s Independence Day celebration, leading to much disappointment from residents and visitors alike.  “We understand the Town Council’s reasoning for eliminating the fireworks from the budget this year,” said Main Street president Paul Heckles, “but we think it’s important to bring them back. And we believe the community, including our civic-minded local businesses, will step up with donations and sponsorships.”

Donors can send checks made out to Main Street Chestertown, with “Fireworks” on the memo line. Donations also can be made online through PayPal at mainstreetchestertown.org. Main Street Historic Chestertown (doing business as Main Street Chestertown) is a 501(c)(3) dedicated to fostering an inviting, diverse and prosperous downtown. All donations are tax-deductible.

Donations can be sent to the Main Street Chestertown office at 118 N. Cross Street, Chestertown, MD 21620.

Kent Attainable Housing Acquires Property for an Affordable Home

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Thanks to generous donors and a community-minded law firm – Rasin, Wootton and Hurd –  who did the settlement pro bono, Kent Attainable Housing, Inc. was able to buy its first lot in Chestertown to build an affordable home for a Kent County family.  Incorporated in April 2019, Kent Attainable Housing is a Maryland nonprofit whose mission is to create home ownership opportunities for local families in need of safe, decent and affordable housing by building affordable homes.  In addition to making a difference in the lives of children who feel more secure when their housing situation is stable, offering home ownership provides families the first large asset they can call their own.

Jonathan Chace, Genie Wootton, Lani Seikaly, and Ed Minch (L-R) at Rasin, Wootton and Hurd Law Firm for Kent Attainable Housing first property settlement.

The newly formed board includes Lani Seikaly, president; Ed Minch, vice president and treasurer; Jonathan Chace, secretary; and board members Pam Ortiz, David Biehler, Fredy Granillo, and Retha Arabal.  Seikaly shared, “We are so appreciative of the donors who helped us purchase this property, located on College Avenue across from Bethel Church, and can’t wait to get started with our first home project which is being lead by Ed Minch who is designing the specs for a modular home company to build.”

Jonathan Chace, who chairs the Human Resources Committee, will be soliciting volunteers to help with the project including light construction, building a deck, landscaping and mentoring our applicants.  Modeled after the Habitat for Humanities program criteria, Kent Attainable Housing will select a home buyer from the applicants based on need, ability to pay an affordable mortgage, and commitment to partner with the organization including sweat equity and participation in financial and new homeowner workshops sponsored by the Maryland Rural Development Corporation.

Chesapeake Charities Seeks Nominations of the Best in Philanthropy

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Chesapeake Charities is calling for nominations for the following prestigious awards: Philanthropist of the Year, Nonprofit of the Year and Volunteer of the Year. The awards will be presented at its annual Celebration of Charity luncheon on November 14, 2019 at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club in Stevensville. The deadline to submit nominations is Friday, August 23, 2019.

“Since this is our 15th anniversary, we want to honor truly exceptional individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to improve the communities we serve.  This is our opportunity to recognize and celebrate the very best in philanthropy,” commented Linda Kohler, Executive Director.

Chesapeake Charities is asking the community-at-large to submit nominations. Philanthropist of the Year will recognize an individual who has demonstrated outstanding generosity and community leadership. Volunteer of the Year will honor someone who has gone above and beyond in fulfilling their service role. Nonprofit of the Year will be presented to an organization that has consistently provided vital support to the community they serve. The Governor Larry Hogan Scholarship for cancer research will also be presented at the event.

Kim Umberger and Governor Hogan received awards from Linda Kohler at the 2016 Celebration of Charity luncheon.

The Celebration of Charity awards luncheon has become a hallmark for recognizing those who give in extraordinary measure.  In 2016, Governor Hogan was honored for the courage and leadership he displayed while waging a personal battle against cancer during his first year in office. In 2017, those on the front lines of the opioid crisis were recognized for their efforts to educate the public about opioid misuse and rehabilitate individuals recovering from addiction.  The 2017 honorees included Talbot Goes Purple, Farming for Hunger and the Samaritan House.  Last year, the event recognized The Wills Group, Mark Freestate, and the Light House Homeless Prevention Support Center for their efforts to lift Maryland families out of poverty.

The deadline to submit nominations is August 23, 2019 at 5:00 p.m.  Nomination forms can be obtained online at chesapeakecharities.org/connect/forms-applications or by calling Chesapeake Charities at (410) 643-4020.  Nominees must be from one of the eight counties served by Chesapeake Charities: Anne Arundel, Calvert, Caroline, Charles, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot.

Chesapeake Charities is a community foundation located in Stevensville, Maryland that supports over
90 nonprofit funds that impact a range of charitable causes including animal welfare, arts, education, health and human services, and the environment. To date they have generated more than $25 million in investment and grant funding for charitable projects in eight counties: Anne Arundel, Calvert, Caroline, Charles, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot. For more information, contact Chesapeake Charities at (410) 643-4020 or info@chesapeakecharities.org, or visit www.chesapeakecharities.org. Chesapeake Charities is accredited by the National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations.

Stetson Will Not Seek Fourth Term on Council

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Councilman Marty Stetson announces his decision not to run for reelection

Chestertown Councilman Marty Stetson announced Monday that he will not seek a fourth term in this fall’s council elections.

Stetson, who represents the town’s fourth ward, is the longest-serving current member of the council, having taken office in January 2008. He made his announcement during his ward report at the Aug. 5 council meeting. He said that he is in excellent health and that he believed he would not have any problem in winning another term. However, he said, increasing problems with his hearing were the deciding factor. “Listening is an important part of this job,” he said, and with difficulties in following verbal discussions or conversations with constituents, he realized he could no longer fill his role effectively.

A former town Police Chief and county alcoholic beverage inspector, Stetson has been a consistent advocate of fiscal restraint during his time on the council. He was strongly opposed to the town’s purchase of the Chestertown marina, arguing that the facility serves only a fraction of residents and that its revenues would never repay the purchase price. He has also been a consistent opponent of spending taxpayer funds for a July 4 fireworks display, which ultimately led to the decision to drop fireworks from the 2019 budget.

At the same time, Stetson has been an active supporter of the dog park, which is funded by the Friends of the Dog Park and is located in Margo Bailey Park in his ward. The Friends have donated funds to purchase and construct all the park’s facilities and make a regular donation to the town to allow the town crew to perform maintenance.

Councilman Marty Stetson, Councilman Ellsworth Tolliver and Town Clerk Jen Mulligan at the Aug. 5 Chestertown council.

During his tenure on the council, Stetson has been an enthusiastic representative for the town at Maryland Municipal League meetings, where he has regularly carried the town’s flag in opening ceremonies. He has also been a regular attendee at Kent County’s Council of Government meetings. And it is rare for him to miss a local ribbon-cutting or other events where a council presence is appropriate. Stetson is also a dedicated sports fan, often wearing ties or socks with Orioles or Ravens logos to meetings, especially after a home team win.

After Stetson’s announcement, Councilman Ellsworth Tolliver, who was elected in 2017, expressed his appreciation for Stetson’s willingness to help the newer members of the council learn the ropes of town government. He praised Stetson’s wisdom and patience and thanked him for his long service to the town.

Councilman David Foster, elected the same year as Tolliver, said that Stetson and he had not agreed on all issues, but that Stetson had never let their differences affect their relationship as colleagues. “He doesn’t hold a grudge,” Foster said. He also said that Stetson was always ready to offer a ride to out-of-town meetings they were both attending, and to make other efforts to smooth his younger colleague’s way during his first term on the council.

Here is the text of Stetson’s announcement, of which he provided the Spy with a printed copy.

“From time to time I am asked if I am going to run for a fourth term. I think now is a good time to let you know my decision.

“First I am in good health – I exercise a minimum of an hour each day, can and do 100 sit-ups and 50 push-ups. My exercise may be just a walk or a bike ride but usually includes swimming laps, working with weights or an elliptical machine. I of course no longer run marathons or swim across the Bay, that occurred many years ago. I am within 10 pounds of the weight I graduated from high school, but I will say it is not distributed in the same manner.

“All that being said, I am 82 years old and I, like many other people, felt that someone 82 should not be running for office. Now that I am 82, I am not sure I feel that way.

“But I do have a loss of hearing. I have been wearing hearing aids for over 20 years but as of late, my loss has become more pronounced. I am having trouble hearing all that is said, not usually by the Council people if they talk one at a time. But I do have trouble in group settings of any kind. I believe listening is a very important part of this job – so because I feel that it keeps me from doing the job as I think it needs to be done, I will not be filing for the fourth term.

“It is not because I feel I may lose, I feel I could win my Council seat if I choose to run. I seldom go out in public without someone stopping and saying they appreciate my honesty and frankness while serving on the Council. Some say they may not agree with me but appreciate the sincerity of my thoughts.

“When you add in my four years of active duty in the military service, with my time on the Maryland State Police, time as Chief of Police of Chestertown, that of Alcoholic Beverage Inspector for the county along with the twelve years I have spent on the Council, it amounts to over 60 years of public service of one kind or another.

“I plan on being a very active member of the council right up until my successor is sworn in, whoever he or she may be.”

Council members and members of the public attending the meeting applauded at the conclusion of Stetson’s statement.

Councilwoman Linda Kuiper, who also faces reelection this fall, has not announced whether she plans to run for a third term.

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Mount Harmon Hosts Lotus Blossom Art & Nature Festival

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Bring friends and family to come enjoy our annual Mount Harmon Lotus Blossom Art & Nature Festival, Saturday, August 10th from 10am – 4pm.  This will be a great day to visit Mount Harmon ~ an historic Tidewater plantation and 200-acre nature preserve, and enjoy nature-inspired artisans, crafts, and activities for all ages!  Visitors will enjoy a wide array of local Fine Artisan & Craft Vendors, Nature & Environmental Exhibitors, Live Blue Grass Music, Local Food & Beverage Vendors, Craft Activities for Kids, Plantation Wagon Rides to see the American Lotus Water Lilies, Colonial Re-enactors & Living History Demonstrations, Manor House Tours, and much more!

Local Food Trucks Crave and Maryland in a Can with Crab Cakes, Burgers & BBQ, Woodside Ice Cream, Crow Winery, Bayheads Brewing Company, and Live Bluegrass Music featuring High Lonesome & Blue, and the Mayo Family Band, plus the Scottish Highland Brigade, Hessian Tavern, and the National Park Service Chesapeake Roving Ranger & others. Contact info@mountharmon.org for more information and to request press credentials. Proceeds benefit Mount Harmon, a scenic and historic treasure.

Admission: $5

FOMH Members & Children under 12: Free

Advance tickets or purchase upon entry.

www.mountharmon.org   410-275-8819  info@mountharmon.org

Mount Harmon, 600 Mount Harmon Road, Earleville, MD 21919

Mount Harmon Plantation, a scenic and historic treasure.

Ash+Ember’s Colen Sisters Discuss the Dispensary Business and Campaign to De-stigmatize Medical Cannabis

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Ashley Colen and Paige Colen, principals of Ash+Ember cannabis dispensary in Centreville, spoke to the Community Breakfast group Tuesday, July 25. The sisters grew up on a farm outside of Rock Hall. They received the license to operate Ash+Ember in February 2018, which has grown to over 5000 registered patients, often recommended by local medical providers. They also hold a U.S. patent for the first 3-D printed delivery device for medical cannabis.

Cannabis sativa is the scientific name for the cannabis plant, distinguished from commercial hemp that has no psychoactive properties. All strains of medical cannabis produce a variety of chemical compounds – cannabinoids – including THC, responsible for the marijuana “high,” and CBD, believed to reduce anxiety, inflammation, and pain.

Ashley Colen explained that components of the plant – especially THC and CBD – regulate bodily processes differently from opiates, which mask pain but do not heal. The illegal status has stymied research in the U.S., but Ashley Colen reported that studies in Israel, England, and other countries show that CBD can be useful for epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and childhood diabetes.

“Western medicine is just catching up now,” Ashley Colen said. Researchers at John Hopkins are starting to suggest that patients try CBD. The University of Maryland Pharmacy School recently announced its Masters in Cannabis Studies program.

“While cannabis is effective for pain relief, it’s not a quick panacea, like pop this in and everything’s going to be great,” Ashley Colen remarked. She contrasted it with opiates that may produce quick relief, but are highly addictive with unwanted side effects. “You might not feel pain in your leg, but you probably also don’t laugh as hard or enjoy your sunsets…. It dulls all of your senses, so that’s not ideal.”

Cannabis studies show “it’s more like a supplement, a vitamin,” rather than a “quick fix.” The healthy body naturally produces molecules identical to THC, she explained. Cannabis therapy “fills in the holes” to replace those molecules lost in aging bodies. “It makes your body work more as it did when you were 20.”

Atlas asked about the long-term effects of regular use of cannabis. Ashley Colen responded that “It’s been used for thousands of years of medicine in numerous cultures, so the evidence is there.” Western science “is just getting into it.”

Paige Colen explained that Israeli researchers have been investigating cannabinoids for almost 40 years and have isolated over 400 different compounds in addition to the familiar THC.

“But it’s also been determined that most of these chemicals have specific effects that can be used to target different ailments. Identified by scientists in the 1990s, the human cannabinoid system has receptors on most of the major organs of the body. There are none on your brain stem, so that is why you cannot overdose on cannabis,” Paige Colen explained.

Audience member Airlee Johnson asked about varieties that Ash+Ember offered.

“If you come in and tell me how you want to feel, I will tell you what strain you want,” Ashley Colen explained, noting that Ash+Ember has developed relationships with Maryland’s top growers and stocks 60 different strains depending upon availability. Ash+Ember’s staff is trained about different strains with similar healing effects so that patients can have alternatives. Factors like sleep, exercise and diet are in play while deciding on a course of treatment. There is a pharmacist on staff, mandated by state law, and all staff members are rigorously trained.

Paige Colen discussed differences between ingesting cannabis products in food and smoking them. Smoking gets the cannabinoids into the bloodstream very quickly, but the effects last only about 3 hours. Conversely, edibles are slower to take effect, but last much longer – 4 to 6 hours, typically. Delivery depends on the patient’s condition and comfort level, she said.

Atlas said that many people are brought up believing that “life is hard,” and that anxiety and stress are “the normal state of affairs.” He worried that if he “felt good all the time about things,” he might not be “my normal participant self.”

“You’re not altered to the point where you’re numbed and you just don’t care about anything,” Paige Colen responded. “You’re just not snappy anymore.” She added that cannabis allows the user to step back and evaluate things, “which is what you should be doing at every stage.” She said she found that her own performance in all areas was enhanced by using cannabis, although she has stopped using cannabis when she became pregnant.

Chestertown Councilman David Foster asked, “What is the difference between Maryland’s medical marijuana law and recreational use?”

“When you come to us, we don’t tell you can only take CBD,” Paige Colen said. “I like to say that anyone who’s using cannabis for recreation, the joke’s on you, because you’re getting the medical benefits” such as lower anxiety, improved sleep, and pain relief.

Dr. Harry Hart, a retired optometrist, remarked that his wife had tried CBD for chronic pain, at first with some success, but didn’t result in further improvement of her condition.

Ashley Colen explained Hart’s wife was likely taking CBD derived from industrial hemp, and that studies have shown that such CBD has “a top-off point, and the body stops absorbing it.” “Medically-optimized Cannabis sativa does not have that problem because it has a higher concentration of CBD, Ashley Colen explained, adding that the main side effects are “happy, sleeping well, hungry.”

Ashley Colen also reported that they have started a non-profit program to supply cannabis to indigent hospice patients to allow them to have some quality of life without being sedated with opioids.

Foster asked what the sisters would tell their children about cannabis?

Paige Colen said she would be talking to them and telling them about it as a medicine.

Ashley Colen talks to her nine-year-old son “very openly.” Her mission is to “destigmatize this plant. It’s not dangerous.” Communicating respect for “the power of the plant” is the best approach to deter young people from misusing it, she remarked. If a child thinks, “Mommy sells medical cannabis to sick people all the time, he’s less likely to be attracted than if it’s somehow mysterious and forbidden,” she said. “Kids aren’t going into your medicine cabinet and chugging aspirin.”

The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission requires patients to register and pay for a patient ID card that can be ordered online at www.mmcc.maryland.gov. Ash+Ember can assist patients who need application assistance.

Ash+Ember is open seven days a week: Monday-Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m; Friday-10 to 8; Saturday-10 to 5, and Sunday-11 to 3. Medical cannabis is not covered by most insurance plans. Ash+Ember accepts cash or checks. For more information, visit www.ashembercannabis.com.

The community breakfast group meets at 7:30 a.m. every Thursday at Holiday Inn Express in Chestertown. The talks usually last about an hour, with a question-and-answer included.

Editor’s note: Steve Meehan is a Chestertown Spy advisor, volunteer editor, and part owner of Ash + Ember.

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