Outdoors Maryland Set to Return for its 33rd Season on Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Southern Maryland News Net

Maryland Public Television’s (MPT) award-winning original series Outdoors Maryland returns for its 33rd season on Tuesday, November 9 with four new half-hour episodes airing throughout the month. Produced in cooperation with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Outdoors Maryland presents thought-provoking stories that capture the state’s beauty as well as its diverse collection of ecosystems, people, and places.

Outdoors Maryland airs Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m. on MPT-HD and via MPT’s livestream at mpt.org/livestream. Episodes are also available to stream on-demand at video.mpt.tv and on mobile devices via the PBS Video App.

Segments premiering during the November 9 episode are:

  • A Family Affair (Dorchester County): Eastern Shore trapper Justin Aaron demonstrates the long legacy of muskrat trapping in his family as they prepare for the 2020 National Outdoors Show, a celebration of survival skills and crafts. DNR biologist Donald Webster outlines the trapping program in Maryland and educates viewers on the lifecycle and habits of muskrats.
  • Feel the Burn (Allegany County): For the first time in decades, fire is being used for forest management at the Sideling Hill Creek Nature Preserve in Little Orleans. With eyes towards the future, DNR and Nature Conservancy experts observe and share the ecological benefits of the introduction of flames to the landscape just months after a carefully controlled burn.

New segments airing on November 16 are:

  • A Much Anticipated Emergence (statewide): Millions of cicadas took to the skies of Maryland and the East Coast during the spring of 2021. University of Maryland entomologist Mike Raupp and Baltimore artist Michael Brown, creator of Cicada Parade-a, offer their unique takes on the Brood X spawning through science and art.
  • To Catch a Catfish (St. Mary’s County): The invasive blue catfish is threatening the delicate balance of life in the Chesapeake. While DNR researchers work alongside the U.S. Geological Survey in tracking these fish to manage their population, officials are encouraging greater fishing of the invasive species to help curb its rise.
  • An Epoch Unearthing (St. Mary’s County, Calvert County): Dr. Stephen Godfrey from the Calvert Marine Museum has discovered several fossils of ancient marine life in the area of Calvert Cliffs, hinting at a different Chesapeake than people know today. Meanwhile, in Laurel’s Dinosaur Park, paleontologist JP Hodnett has uncovered the fossil-rich area’s latest find: Astrodon, Maryland’s State Dinosaur.

Segments premiering during the November 23 episode are:

  • Off the Beaten Path (Garrett County): Designed with both recreation and stewardship in mind, the newly formed Wolf Den Run State Park has breathed new life into a swath of land affected by mining and logging. Off-road vehicles are encouraged on the trails while other areas are cordoned off so certain species – such as the endangered Allegheny Woodrat – can return.
  • A Fledgling Enterprise (statewide): As the arrival of an exotic bird – the Painted Bunting – excites birders and scientists with its colorful plumage, it sparks conversation about the future. As rising sea levels and temperatures cause birds to change their nesting and migration habits, the Maryland Bird Atlas – a years-long effort that enlists bird watchers as citizen scientists – aims to catalogue the state’s avian population.
  • Iron Mountain (Frederick County): Adjacent to picturesque Cunningham Falls State Park lies the ruins of a booming iron foundry called Catoctin Furnace. The furnace heavily employed the use of slave labor and has now become a landmark for preserving Black history. Through research, historians understand more of the culture brought by enslaved Africans and have even reconstructed the visage of some of those who were buried on the property.

The fourth new episode of the 33rd season, airing Nov. 30, will feature fan-favorite classic content including profiles of landscape painter Kevin Fitzgerald and photographer David Harp as well as students raising horseshoe crabs in their classrooms.

In January 2022, Outdoors Maryland will deliver two more new episodes highlighting topics from the mysterious Ghost Fleet of Mallows Bay to the continent-spanning migration of birds and more.

Since debuting in 1988, MPT has produced more than 700 Outdoors Maryland stories on topics ranging from science-oriented environmental issues to segments about unusual people, animals, and places around the state. The series has earned more than 50 awards over more than 30 years of production, including several Emmy® Awards from the National Capital Chesapeake Bay Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Taylor, Lewis compete at state golf tournament

The Garrett County Republican

COLLEGE PARK — Northern senior Chase Taylor and Southern freshman Hank Lewis both battled valiantly through substandard weather conditions on Tuesday, but the two fell just short of making it to the Day 2 of the Maryland state golf championships.

The state golf tournament began on Tuesday and was held at the University of Maryland in College Park. Though both Taylor and Lewis were both eliminated, they each had strong starts as they were both above the cutoff line at one point during the back nine.

Taylor finished 15-over (86) to tie for 31st. For him, it was the stretch from holes No. 12-18 that were his undoing.

“The conditions were pretty tough out there, and I’m just not used to hitting off Bermuda grass,” said Taylor. “I finished off so bad. I think I finished double, double, bogie, triple, double on the last five holes. It was a mess. I just blew up.

“It was just the small stuff that I was messing up. I just couldn’t hit an iron, really that’s just all there is to it. If I hit a fairway, I wouldn’t hit a green. I was chunking everything. The ground’s wet and it’s Bermuda grass, so I was just deep swinging and catching everything fat.”

The senior had made it to states when he posted a 79 at the west regionals a month ago.

“I’m really glad I got to come here in the first place; it’s awesome,” Taylor said. “The course is really nice.It’s in good shape too besides it being wet today. I’m really glad I got to come here and play, it was fun.”

Lewis finished just behind Taylor by going 16-over (87) and also had a rough time down the stretch as he double bogeyed two of his last five holes.

“I played OK. I could’ve done a lot better,” Lewis said. “Wind, just specifically the swirling of the wind, I didn’t know what club to hit at times. I couldn’t really make a decision.

“It’s a learning experience. I want to improve everything about my game. … It’s an honor to be with seniors (Taylor and Darian Bauer). Darian’s the best in the region, so it’s an honor to be here with them as a freshman.”

Bauer, the senior from Allegany, won the 1A/2A regional title and advanced to Day 2 on Wednesday.

The top 40% of individual male and female competitors advanced to the Day 2 Finals, as well as those who tied with the cutoff score.

The Best Places to Buy a Vacation Rental Home

Better Homes & Gardens

In case you missed the growing number of articles dedicated to the topic, the vacation home rental industry is booming. A recent report from Guesty, a property management platform, found that reservation volume is skyrocketing, with rentals from July through September up 270% over the same period a year earlier. Additionally, average nightly rates for the same time frame were up about 30%.

It’s hard to read news like that and not want to get in on the action. As it turns out, it just might be an opportune time to do so. A 2021 study by Vacasa, a vacation rental management company, found that second-home buyer demand is starting to decline, which could result in more affordable purchases for those still shopping around. The cooling market might be due to the fact that many of the people who were on the hunt for a vacation home purchase already sealed the deal during the past 18 months.

Figuring out whether your budget can accommodate the purchase of a vacation rental home is merely half the battle. You’ll also need to answer the million-dollar question: Where does it make the most sense to buy such a property? Luckily, it’s a question plenty of data analysts and previous buyers have spent a significant amount of time contemplating. Both Vacasa and Magnify Money (part of the LendingTree family) have recently issued reports detailing the best markets to invest in real estate intended to be used as a vacation rental home.

Here are some of the top locations identified, as well as a few locations recommended by current (and very successful) vacation rental hosts.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee
A mountain town in eastern Tennessee that puts you near the entrance to the popular Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg is the number one place to own a rental vacation home, according to Vacasa’s 2021 data. The median home sale price here is about $320,111, says the report, and an annual gross rental revenue of $47,328.

Vacasa isn’t the only company that says Gatlinburg is the place to be a rental vacation homeowner. Jeff Shipwash, CEO of Shipwash Properties, a small real estate investment company based in Tennessee, also suggests this location.

“The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of America’s most visited national parks, attracting more than 12 million visitors per year. Many of these visitors are traveling from out of town and need lodging,” says Shipwash, whose company owns several Airbnb rentals in the area.

Shipwash also says Gatlinburg is a great option because the supply of hotel and motel accommodations is very limited, making vacation rentals even more critical.

“Gatlinburg is also an affordable place to purchase investment properties compared to other popular cities,” says Shipwash. “With its affordability and attractions close by, Gatlinburg is an excellent investment market.”

St. Augustine, Florida
Sunny Florida is another safe bet for a vacation rental home, and the top location in the Sunshine State is historic St. Augustine, according to Vacasa. Known for being the oldest city in the country, and for its charming Spanish colonial architecture, the median home price is $365,576, while the annual gross rental revenue is about $46,557.

Some of the reasons travelers love this destination? Pristine beaches, a historic downtown, and an overall European feel.

Gulf Shores, Alabama
Another sun-drenched option popular with vacationers and spring breakers, Gulf Shores is a top-ranked vacation rental home destination, says Vacasa. However, the median home price here is not cheap at $402,905. Annual gross revenue for rentals in Gulf Shores is about $46,107.

There’s a lot to attract visitors to Gulf Shores though, including nearly every water sport you can think of as well as a long list of legendary bars and restaurants. As an added bonus, each spring the destination hosts The Hangout Music Festival, a wildly popular event that attracts a crush of travelers and famous musicians (all of whom need lodging, of course.)

Blue Ridge, Georgia
Blue Ridge has a lot going for it, not the least of which is the affordable home purchase prices. The median sales price is about $290,934, while annual gross revenue for rentals is about $38,266.

The draw for travelers and visitors includes many popular hiking trails, 16 waterfalls, horseback riding, fishing, and a long list of orchard festivals in the fall.

Palm Springs, California
Palm Springs has been a hot spot (literally and figuratively) for decades. It has long been the playground of celebrities and golf enthusiasts. And as it turns out, this desert community is also a solid choice for a vacation rental property, albeit one of the pricier places to get into the market.

The median home price here is a steep $539,370, which should come as no surprise given that the destination is home to many people fleeing Los Angeles and San Francisco, and is a popular place for vacation homes among the glitterati and well-heeled.

Still, if you can afford to get into the market here, it will surely pay off. The annual gross rental revenue is $52,784. The attractions for travelers and visitors are plentiful. There’s desert hiking, shopping on par with Beverly Hills, and a plethora of trendy restaurants and bars.

Deep Creek Lake, Maryland
Among the top 10 locations on the Vacasa report, Deep Creek is home to the state’s largest inland lake. That means water activities are a big draw and include boating, tubing, and waterskiing. Deep Creek is also a popular choice for skiing and snowboarding at nearby Wisp Resort, says Vacasa. The area also offers abundant hiking thanks to Swallow Falls State Park. It’s no wonder that Deep Creek ranks so high as a vacation rental destination.

The average home purchase price here is $439,367, while the annual gross rental revenue is $51,031.

Seaside, Oregon
Oregon has a lot going for it as a vacation destination thanks to its stunning natural beauty. So it should come as no surprise that more than a few Oregon locations can be found among the top choices for vacation rental properties. The highest-ranked community on Vacasa’s list is Seaside, a small coastal town where biking, walking, and strolling along the 100-year-old promenade are all popular ways to spend time. The Seaside Aquarium is another notable attraction. But really, what more reason do you need than the beautiful beach?

At $466,086, the median home price is not exactly inexpensive, but the annual gross rental revenue is $45,249.

Ludlow, Vermont
Rounding out the top 10 on the Vacasa list, Ludlow is all about quality time outdoors. The community is convenient to the Okemo Mountain Resort, which offers plenty of fun for skiers and snowboarders. Another notable attraction is Buttermilk Falls, a picturesque series of three waterfalls and swimming holes.

Home prices in Ludlow are also attractive with the median sale at about $346,950, while annual gross rental revenue is $42,638.

Big Bear, California
California residents need little explanation regarding the popularity of this destination as a vacation rental property location. But for those not familiar, Big Bear is a year-round activity-filled destination convenient to both Los Angeles and San Diego. Thanks to its proximity to these two urban centers, the destination attracts hordes of travelers. Skiing is one of the top reasons to visit, thanks to Snow Summit ski resort. But there’s also snow tubing and, in warmer seasons, hiking among the San Bernardino National Forest. The lake is also an attraction entirely of its own.

“Big Bear Lake is a public lake with two public boat launch ramps. Six marinas offer boat rentals and other concessions including pontoon boats, speedboats, and personal watercraft,” says money-saving expert Andrea Woroch, who owns three vacation rentals, one of which is in Big Bear. “There’s a variety of activities, such as parasailing, water skiing, fishing excursions, and boat tours. People can picnic lakeside and enjoy the iconic rock formations at Boulder Bay Park. Swim Beach at Meadow Park has an on-duty lifeguard, floating dock, and water toys.”

The median home price here is $372,667, according to Vacasa.

McCall, Idaho
The resort town of McCall is Magnify Money’s top choice for a vacation rental investment property. Experts recommend McCall because home prices in the area have been on a hot streak in recent years. But that’s just one of the reasons the destination is a safe bet, says Jacob Channel, senior economic analyst for LendingTree.

“Not only are a majority of homes in McCall vacation homes (64.6%), but home prices in the area also rose by 64% from 2015 to 2019 and have continued to rise since the start of the pandemic—up more than 50% from September 2021, according to Realtor.com,” says Channel. “This means those who invest in a second home in this area will likely see a solid return on their investment, both in terms of income generated from renting the home out as well as in terms of home price appreciation.”

The median home value in McCall was $206,800. As of 2019, that price shot up to $339,900. Attractions in McCall include miles of whitewater rapids for rafting, hiking and backpacking trails, craft breweries, wineries, and hot springs.

Cape Canaveral, Florida
Cape Canaveral is another Florida destination that receives high marks as an investment option because of its robust home price, says Channel. Between 2015 and 2019 median home values here rose from $167,300 to $244,900, which is a 46% change.

Of course, Cape Canaveral is well known for being a convenient place to visit The Kennedy Space Center. There’s also a Manatee Sanctuary Park here and a waterfront boardwalk.

Vail, Colorado
When it comes to Vail, think skiing, skiing, and well…more skiing. And all those travelers need somewhere to stay when visiting, making Vail a solid place to purchase a vacation rental property (it landed at number four on Magnify Money’s list of choices).

However, the median home price in Vail shot up from $534,400 in 2015 to a staggering $773,700 in 2019.

Sunriver, Oregon
Slightly more affordable than Vail, but still among Magnify Money’s top picks, the median price for a home in Sunriver is about $564,800, which is a 43% increase from 2015 when median prices were about $393,700.

Sunriver is a 3,300-acre planned residential and resort community ideal for spending time outdoors whether skiing, exploring the national forest nearby, or enjoying the miles of paved biking and walking trails. Additional activities include golf, tennis, and visiting the Sunriver Nature Center.

Cape May, New Jersey
Although not on either the Vacasa or Magnify Money ranking, Airbnb Super Host Anna Papalia says the beach community of Cape May should definitely be on your shortlist.

“Cape May is one of the best places to vacation, and invest in a vacation home for several reasons,” says Papalia, who owns a rental property in the community. “Not only are the beaches stunning and pristine, but it’s America’s first seaside resort—the first settlers came to Cape May in the 1600s.

“There is never a shortage of renters in Cape May,” continues Papalia. “I easily paid my annual mortgage plus expenses ($60,000) in five months of renting out to summer beachgoers.”

The beach isn’t the only attraction here. Cape May is the location of more than 100 historic Victorian properties, a buzzing restaurant scene, and is also popular with birders because of its migratory patterns and many nature preserves, says Papalia. What’s more, a Harriet Tubman museum recently opened in the area.

While Cape May is unlikely to be the most affordable place to purchase an investment home (the median sale price is about $523,000), you can rest assured it’s a destination that is very well-trafficked, says Papalia.

The Catskills and Hudson Valley, New York
As the owner of the rental company Red Cottage Inc., Jennifer Grimes knows a thing or two about vacation property purchases. She also owns a real estate brokerage, Country House Realty, a boutique agency focused on the second-home market that serves The Catskills and Hudson Valley.

With all of this experience, Grimes recommends a purchase in upstate New York, specifically in the Catskills and the Hudson Valley. “Given the proximity to metro New York, and the stunning natural surroundings, the area is on fire for short-term vacation rentals,” says Grimes.

One of her top choices in the area is the town of Livingston Manor, which features numerous breweries and shops, fly fishing, and a small-town feel. Nearby towns that are worth checking out include Callicoon and Narrowsburg, both of which are located along the Delaware River.

“Guests renting in those towns, they have a lot of outdoor experiences on their doorstep like hiking Jensen Ledges, kayaking or tubing down the Delaware in season, swimming in the river at Skinner’s Falls, or just going on scenic drives through farm country and finishing up at Callicoon Wine Merchant for a tipple and tapas,” says Grimes.

The average home price in Livingston Manor over the past year was about $317,893, while in Callicoon it was $294,536 and in Narrowsburg, you’ll find prices around $249,712, says Grimes.

Tips for Picking a Vacation Home Location
Here are a few parting tips from the experts about selecting a location for a vacation home rental investment.

Generally speaking, areas where home prices are quickly rising, and where vacation homes make up a large portion of the area’s total housing supply, are good places to invest in a second home, says Channel. “This is especially true if you’re planning on renting your second home out or otherwise using it to generate income,” says Channel.
Sunny coastal spots make up most of the places in high-demand across the U.S. right now because they’re year-round holiday destinations, says Marcus Rader, CEO of Hostaway.
Places that have a lot of attractions for families or are renowned beauty spots are also safe bets, adds Rader. Destinations such as Lake Tahoe are also a safe investment because they continue to be popular year-after-year, adds Rader.
Local regulations surrounding vacation rentals and property taxes have big variations. It’s easy to get tripped up by these, so do your research on this front before purchasing.
Ultimately, like any other real estate investment, the key is location, location, location.

“The location is the most important thing because this determines your revenue—not just what nightly rate you can set, but also if you can actually rent it out all year round,” says Rader.

The 10 Best Places To Buy a Vacation Home in 2021

Gabrielle Olya From GOBankingRates

If you’ve thought about buying a second home as a vacation property, now may be a good time to do so. According to a recent report by Redfin, second-home buyer demand is slowing down, which will open up more affordable inventory for those still in the market. And while buyer demand for second homes is decreasing, guest demand is still high, which is great news for those looking to make rental income off their vacation home, Vacasa reported.

According to a recent Vacasa survey, most prospective buyers interested in purchasing a second home are looking to spend under $399,999, and 46% hope to generate rental income ASAP. Fortunately, many of the top places to buy a vacation home in 2021 — as determined by Vacasa based on home sales and vacation rental performance data from the last 12 months — meet these qualifications.

Take a look at the top 10 vacation rental markets.

  1. Ludlow, Vermont
    Median home price: $346,950
    Annual gross rental revenue: $42,638
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 5.2%
    Ludlow appeals to vacationers with a love of the great outdoors, with Okemo Mountain Resort and Buttermilk Falls located nearby. With a relatively high vacation rental market cap rate, this New England locale earned the No. 10 spot on Vacasa’s ranking.

  1. Seaside, Oregon
    Median home price: $466,086
    Annual gross rental revenue: $45,249
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 5.2%
    This coastal town is easily navigated by walking or biking, and is home to a 100-year-old promenade. Water enthusiasts can do plenty of surfing or kayaking here as well.

  1. Deep Creek Lake, Maryland
    Median home price: $439,367
    Annual gross rental revenue: $51,031
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 5.7%
    Deep Creek Lake is home to the state’s largest inland lake for boating, tubing and waterskiing. During the winter months, it’s a great place for skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and even going for sleigh rides.
  1. Palm Springs, California
    Median home price: $539,370
    Annual gross rental revenue: $52,784
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 5.9%
    Palm Springs is an ever-popular vacation destination on the West Coast thanks to its mid-century modern homes and thriving downtown restaurant scene.

  1. Blue Ridge, Georgia
    Median home price: $290,934
    Annual gross rental revenue: $38,266
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 6.1%
    Located on the border of Georgia and Tennessee, Blue Ridge offers a number of outdoor activities for vacationers, from hiking to see one of its 16 waterfalls, going for horseback rides or attending one of its numerous fall orchard festivals.

  1. Norris Lake, Tennessee
    Median home price: $343,907
    Annual gross rental revenue: $42,450
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 6.2%
    Norris Lake boasts 52 square miles of fresh water, ideal for activities like stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking and wakeboarding. Plus, it’s a short drive from Knoxville and all the attractions and amenities there.
  1. Dauphin Island, Alabama
    Median home price: $382,699
    Annual gross rental revenue: $43,371
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 6.8%
    Dauphin Island is a family-friendly beach destination. It’s home to the Dauphin Island Sea Lab and the Audubon Bird Sanctuary, as well as uncrowded white sandy beaches.

  1. Gulf Shores, Alabama
    Median home price: $402,905
    Annual gross rental revenue: $46,107
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 7.1%
    Plenty of opportunities for water sports and a plethora of bars and restaurants make Gulf Shores an ideal vacation destination.

  1. St. Augustine, Florida
    Median home price: $365,576
    Annual gross rental revenue: $46,557
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 7.4%
    Beautiful beaches and a downtown historic district attract many visitors to St. Augustine. It’s also home to the No. 1 whiskey tour in America at the St. Augustine Distillery.
  1. Gatlinburg, Tennessee
    Median home price: $320,111
    Annual gross rental revenue: $47,328
    Vacation rental market cap rate: 8.6%
    With a median sale price of around $320,000 and a cap rate of 8.6%, Gatlinburg easily took the top spot on Vacasa’s ranking. The Southern destination is home to Skylift Park — North America’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge — and Anakeesta adventure park.

$975,000 planned for Meadow Mountain Trail

The Garrett County Republican

WASHINGTON — A federal spending measure currently under consideration contains $975,000 for a Garrett County trail project.

U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced the inclusion of over $7 million in direct federal funding for local projects across Western Maryland within the committee’s proposed annual funding legislation.

The bill would provide Garrett County with the funds to help complete the Meadow Mountain Trail, which is the portion of the Eastern Continental Divide Loop plan that runs from Deep Creek Lake State Park to Grantsville. The project is expected to provide safe paths through public land and increase tourism to Garrett County.

The Western Maryland projects encompass a wide array of local and regional priorities, ranging from infrastructure improvements to economic development.

Overall, Van Hollen included over $62 million in federal money directly for Maryland within the Committee’s proposed legislation.

This legislation, released by the committee as part of the annual Congressional Appropriations process, will proceed to consideration before the full Senate.

“Securing federal investments for key local projects that support our communities is one of my top priorities,” Van Hollen said. “These initiatives will impact the everyday lives of countless Marylanders by modernizing our infrastructure, supporting small businesses, and improving public safety and crisis responses. I was proud to fight for these investments to support Western Maryland, and I will keep working to get this funding over the finish line in Congress.”

Regional funding announced by Van Hollen includes:

— More than $5.8 million in funding for infrastructure & economic development projects, including for the Maryland Tech Council’s support of Maryland’s Technology and Life Sciences Small Businesses, Frederick East Street Rails with Trails: Liberty Road Bridge Crossing, Garrett Trails’ Meadow Mountain Trail, the replacement of Boonsboro’s Drinking Water Reservoir, and Point of Rocks Significant/High Hazard Dam Decommissioning and Stream Restoration.

— $125,000 in funding for public safety for the Frederick police to implement a mobile crisis team.

— More than $1 million in funding to support community development, historical and cultural initiatives, including the purchase of 44 acres to expand the C&O Canal National Historical Park and the purchase of 17 acres to expand Monocacy National Battlefield.

Chamber unveils new logo

The Garrett County Republican

McHENRY — The Garrett County Chamber of Commerce announced Tuesday an update to its visual identity to better reflect the organization’s mission statement and help combat misperceptions.

The new Chamber logo is an evolution of the organization’s previous logo (itself an update of an earlier design). Although the graphic and colors remain the same and the typeface is similar, the text emphasizes the words “Garrett County Chamber of Commerce” rather than “Deep Creek Lake Area.”

Understanding the importance of Maryland’s largest inland body of water, the new logo still proudly proclaims “Home of Deep Creek Lake.”

“The Garrett County Chamber of Commerce is pleased to present our newly worded logo,” said Andrew Fike, chairman of the Chamber’s board of directors.“We, as a board, feel this new logo better represents all Garrett County businesses.

“It’s a small, but meaningful, change,” said Nick Sharps, membership development manager for the Chamber. “We are excited to move forward under this new logo and recommit ourselves to organizing, supporting and representing Garrett County’s business community.”

Kendall Ludwig, president & principal designer of local web and graphic design firm CurlyRed Inc., completed the work on the project.

Dove Center receives Purple Ribbon Award

The Garrett County Republican

OAKLAND — The Dove Center has been named a recipient of a Theresa’s Fund 2021 Purple Ribbon Award in the category of Program/Shelter of the Year.

Winners are chosen across 28 categories, as judged by a national panel of respected professionals from the domestic violence field.

The Purple Ribbon Awards are the first comprehensive awards program honoring the heroes of the domestic violence movement, including advocates, programs, shelters, survivors and members of the community support system. Winners include entries from the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

Winning entries received a certificate signed by Theresa’s Fund founder Preston V. McMurry Jr. and an official Purple Ribbon Award medallion that combines a purple ribbon and custom circular gold medal engraved with the winner’s category.

All other entries received an honoree certificate “because everyone’s heroic efforts to help victims of domestic violence deserve acknowledgment and applause.”

The Dove Center, Garrett County’s comprehensive domestic and sexual violence program, received the award for Program/Shelter of the Year in recognition of its innovative, resilient expansion of programs, including the new Transitional Housing units, pet sheltering program, trauma informed educational efforts, school and campus counseling program, JEWELS group, and more.

Each entry was scored by three judges and each judge scored each entry on a 1-25 scale across four factors: Challenge & Impact (the scope of the challenge faced and overcome), Creativity & Originality (the inventiveness of the nominee in their endeavor), Submission Excellence (the caliber of the materials accompanying the entry) and Overall (the overall performance of the entry relative to other entries).

The scores for an entry were averaged and up to the three highest scores in a given category received a Purple Ribbon Award.

To ensure parity, entries were classified into one of three groups based on the size of a nominee’s organization: Less than $500,000, Between $500,001 and $2,000,000 and Greater than $2,000,000, and entries were judged within the size classification within each category.

In other words, there were three separate competitions within each category to provide organizations the opportunity to be reviewed among their peers.

To read the full article click here.

Oakland B&O Museum in need of volunteers

The Garrett County Republican

OAKLAND — The Oakland B&O Museum is ready for the summer, but the lack of volunteers is preventing it from being operated on regular hours.

Oakland Councilman Terry Helbig, who is also chairman of the museum’s committee, said at Monday’s meeting that the historic railroad station needs people to donate time toward keeping the museum open.

Helbig said the regular roster of volunteers consists mostly of senior citizens, some of whom have health issues — and they are in the high-risk category for COVID-19. Because of that, they have been reluctant to return to the station, which had delayed reopening until permitted by Gov. Larry Hogan’s recovery plans.

Helbig himself manned the station over the weekend, hosting a couple dozen visitors.

To read the full article click here.

$5 million in federal funding announced for Garrett airport

The Garrett County Republican

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Rep. David Trone, all D-Md., have announced $16 million in funding through the U.S. Department of Transportation for airport infrastructure improvements in Western Maryland.

Garrett County Airport will receive $5,035,688 for the expansion of its apron.

The project will expand the existing general aviation apron to 10,100 square yards to meet Federal Aviation Administration design standards. The grant will fund the final phase, which consists of construction.

An intent to fund this project was previously announced by the secretary of transportation on May 15, 2019.

Hagerstown Regional Airport-Richard A. Henson Field will receive $6,304,480 for the rehabilitation of its main runway, while Frederick Municipal Airport will receive $4,662,770 for the relocation of a taxiway.

Funds authorized under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, which waived local cost-share requirements for federal airport grants through FY2020, will help cover state and local funding obligations for the projects.

“These airports provide a vital connection between Western Maryland and other parts of our state and region. They have continued to serve communities and local economies despite facing significant financial challenges in recent months,” said Cardin, ranking member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee’s Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee. “Improving and upgrading Maryland’s public infrastructure will be critical for our recovery from the downturn brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. I will continue to fight for investments like these throughout our state.”

“The Hagerstown Regional Airport, Frederick Municipal Airport and Garrett County Airport serve as crucial connecting hubs, support local jobs, and create economic opportunity. This investment will go a long way toward keeping critical infrastructure modernized so that all our airports can continue providing top-notch service,” said Van Hollen, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. “We will keep working to bring federal resources to Maryland’s transportation infrastructure given the vital role they play in local communities like these in Western Maryland.”

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Fireworks displays set for Independence Day weekend

The Garrett County Republican

OAKLAND — With COVID-19 putting a damper on many summer events, it’s not holding back a pair of mainstay fireworks displays in Garrett County.

Fire on the Mountain

Fireworks will light up the sky July 4 as the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce presents the annual “Fire on the Mountain” Fireworks Display.

The display is set to begin at dark. The fireworks are launched from the top of the Tubing Park at Wisp Resort. Prime viewing locations include the Scenic Overlook on U.S. 219, Wisp Resort, local businesses in McHenry, and from boats on the lake, particularly around McHenry Cove.

For any location from which you choose to view the fireworks, remember to practice social distancing.

Wisp Resort is the associate sponsor.

Supporting sponsors are Deep Creek Shop n Save; Huey’s Ice Cream; Bear Creek Traders; Perkins Restaurant and McHenry Beverage Shoppe compliments of Hugh Umbel and Ray Shurg; Ledo Pizza, Pasta & Pub; Property Owners’ Association of Deep Creek Lake; and Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations & Sales.

Contributing sponsors are Railey Realty, Railey Vacations and Silver Tree Marine LLC.

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