Election 2018: Talbot Democrat Forum with County Council Candidates

The Talbot County Democratic Forum hosted a Democratic County Council Candidates Presentation last night at the Democratic Headquarters on Dover Street. To the surprise of both the candidates and the organizers, a standing room only crowd showed up to hear six of the seven candidates in the June primary speak on the issues facing Talbot County next year.

The candidates at the gathering included Keasha Haythe, Naomi Hyman, Robin Page, Rose Potter, Maureen Scott-Taylor, and Dominic “Mickey” Terrone.  The seventh candidate, Pete Lesher, was unable to attend due to his responsibilities at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum that evening.

The Spy was there to record each candidates opening remarks and responses to audience member questions.

This video is approximately fifty minutes in length. The Spy will be providing equal coverage to the Republican candidates with a similar format on June 7. 


Senior Nation: Maryland State Retirees Must Change Drug Coverage Soon

A significant change in the Maryland retirement policy takes place at the end of the year is one that will separate prescription drug coverage from the state’s retiree health plan.

This is a very big deal for the thousands of Medicare-eligible state retirees who must enroll in its Part D medication coverage plan by December 31 to continue their drug coverage.

What makes this even more difficult is that official rates for those plans will not be announced until October just as open enrollment begins.  The good news is that  Maryland’s Insurance Assistance Programs staff in each Mid-Shore county will be offering workshops and individual consulting for those impacted.

The Spy state down with Talbot County’s program counselor Pam Limberry for a quick check in on this important revision in coverage.

This video is approximately two minutes in length. For more information about Part D planning, please contact Pam at 410-822-2869 ext. 231 or plimberry@uppershoreaging.org for more information.




Spy Eye: St. Michaels Road Theater Honors Memorial Day

Our friends on St. Michaels Road are back with another installment of road side theater this weekend. While most of the time, they can be counted on for a good sense of irony and humor, their latest production is a somber reminder of the real reason we must celebrate Memorial Day.

Starting with a revolutionary war canon and finishing with a modern day tank, the gap in the landscape is filled with the graves of fallen soldiers while a widow and her young child visit the gravesite.

The community can only be grateful for this unique and sobering display honoring those who gave their lives in the service of our country.

This video is less than one minute in length

Maryland 3.0: A New Kind of Garage for the Car Lovers of the Mid-Shore

One relatively recent trend on the Mid-Shore that sometimes goes unnoticed in comparison to the region’s passion for such things as sailing and art, is the remarkable growth in historic cars and the collection of specialty automobiles. From the annual Ridgely Car Show to the fancier Concours d’Elegance, and more recently, the opening of the Classic Motor Museum in St. Michaels, the Shore is booming with car collectors.

To date, some 2,000 vehicles in the five-county area are considered “historic” by the Maryland DMV, and one can easily doubles that number if including the hundreds of performance and other rare cars that are not old enough for that designation.

The challenge for all those car owners is where to safely keep their pride and joys.

For the very wealthy, the answer is an easy one; simply build more garage space. And perhaps for those on the lower end of the scale, its simply replacing the family sedan with one’s beloved 1970 Volkswagen convertible for example.

But for a significant number of Mid-Shore car enthusiasts, there were very few options in-between for secure storage facilitates that would not only keep these unique museum quality automobiles safe but also well maintained.

That was until now.

Just a few months ago, Mike Kealy, owner of Bay Hundred Auto in St. Michaels which specializes in the maintenance and repair of rare cars, partnered with a customer and friend to solve this gap. Their solution is now open for business in the back of a nondescript commercial warehouse with the appropriate name of Prestige Auto Vault.

The concept is simple enough. Customers park their cars there until they feel the urge to drive them. But unlike many other storage facilities, the Vault takes a few extra steps to ensures the autos are not only secure but also frequently maintained.

Every month, each car in the Vault has a service check. All fluids are inspected, tires are properly inflated, batteries charged, all for the sake of making sure that the vintage car actually works when the client does have the impulse for a Sunday drive in a thirty or forty-year-old car.

The Spy talked to Mike last week to understand more about this entrepreneurial experiment.

This video is approximately two minutes in length. For more information about Prestige Auto Vault please go here.

Nice: Closed St. Michaels Acme to Become Town Center

According to the Star-Democrat this morning, the old Acme food store in downtown St. Michaels will be transformed into a new town center. Plans call for second floor apartments with balconies looking down on Talbot Street.

Read the full story here. Charges may apply.

The Spy’s Monthly Sprout: Ken Mann

Over the next several months, the Spy will be doing short interviews with residents that have using the Trappe-based Eat Sprout prepared meal company. In a joint effort with Eat Sprout owners Ryan and Emily Groll, we wanted to hear first hand why both individuals and families decided to order using this new food option.

We continue this month with, Ken Mann, a managing director of Equity Partners in Easton. A cyclist and weight trainer, Ken was looking for a convenient way to include a sufficient amount of protein in his daily diet without having to result to the sometimes questionable value of commercial protein shakes. He found the answer with Sprout’s ever-changing menu choices.

After meeting Ryan while he was working as a personal trainer several years ago before Sprout started, Ken was well aware of the extraordinary knowledge that Ryan and Emily brought into their new business, and he signed up immediately.

The Spy spoke to Ken at his downtown Easton office last month to talk about Sprout and the impact it has had on his physical fitness.

This video is approximately two minutes in length. Full disclosure, Sprout donates food to the Spy from time to time. For more information about Sprout please go here

Mid-Shore Music: William Thomas and his Ten Years with Tidewater Singers

While William Thomas was professionally trained as an organist when he joined the Talbot County Public Schools District in 1986, his assignment to direct choirs and music theatre at Easton High School led him to a love affair with choral work and the challenges and delights that come with leading large groups of gifted singers.

That passion didn’t go away when he decided to move to Chesapeake College in 2008 to become an associate professor of music. The difficulty came with the realization that the community college did not have an active choral group at that time. He, therefore, reached out to the Tidewater Singers based in Talbot County to rekindle his love affair with cappella and major choral works.

And for the last ten years he has been the Tidewater Singers director, guiding the twenty-five person volunteer choral group through the classic repertoire starting from the 16th Century to the most recent hits from Broadway.

The Spy spent some time with the St. Michaels resident in his classroom at Chesapeake College to talk about this remarkable decade of enjoyment as he describes the joy that comes with using the human voice as its own musical instrument and remarkable fellowship that comes with music.

The Tidewater Singers will be offering their Spring Concert May 11, 12 and 13 this year in both Talbot and Queen Anne’s County with the time of “Love Songs Through the Ages.”

This video is approximately three minutes in length. For more information about the Tidewater Singers please visit their website here

LOVE SONGS through the Ages
William Thomas, director and Lyn Banghart, Accompanist

Friday, May 11, 7:30pm
Trinity Cathedral
315 Goldsborough St., Easton, MD

Saturday, May 12, 7:30pm
Church of the Holy Trinity
502 S. Morris St., Oxford, MD

Sunday, May 13, 4:00pm
St. Pauls Episcopal Church
301 S. Liberty St., Centreville, MD

TICKETS for Friday and Sunday:
$12 in advance at tidewatersingers.org and at Crackerjacks, $15 at door, students free
There will be a Good Will Offering on Saturday
Reservations at 1-888-752-0023


Spy Report: St. Michaels Forum for Town Commissioner Race

Thanks to the League of Women of the Mid-Shore, St. Michaels voters had a real chance to compare and contrast the six candidates running to fill two seats on the Town Commission last night.

With a standing room crowd assembled at the Christ Church Parish Hall,T. Coleman DuPont, Michael A. Gorman, William C. Harvey II, Jennifer C. Stevens, Christopher B. Thomas, and Jaime M. Windon shared with the audience their priorities and opinions on a sundry of different community issues.

The Spy was only able to attend the first hour of the two-hour session but was able to video opening remarks and four of the questions asked of each candidate.

This video is approximately 40 minutes in length. For more information about the League of Women Voters of the Mid-Shore please go here.

Spy Minute: Women & Girls Fund Honor Sue Stockman and Robbin Hill

While it is pretty typical of a philanthropic foundation to have an event to celebrate their grantees every year, it is tough to beat the overwhelming sense of goodwill and fun generated with the annual Women & Girls Fund luncheon.

For sixteen years, the WGF has not only donated but worked to pull resources to help some of the Mid-Shore’s most needy organizations who focus on women and girls issues. From mentoring programs to bilingual computer literacy, environmental education, and summer programs, the Fund has invested a half million dollars in these and similar programs since its founding.

It also didn’t hurt that this year two of the Mid-Shore’s heroes, artist and educator Sue Stockman and Robbin Hill of the Mid-Shore Community Foundation, who have dedicated their careers to empowering women and girls in all five Mid-Shore counties. 

The Spy was there for some of the fun and wanted to share with our readers a few special moments.

This video is approximately two minutes in length. For more information about the Women & Girls Fund please go here 

Horn Point’s Chesapeake Champion Jerry Harris Takes a Bow

For the 6th year in a row, the folks from Horn Point Laboratory gathered at Waterfowl Festival Headquarters on Harrison Street last Friday to once again celebrate the achievements of a special individual from the Mid-Shore who had made a substantial contribution to the environmental health of the Chesapeake Bay.

This year, Jerry Harris, former businessman and now farm owner in Dorchester, received the award for his work in working with Horn Point and Ducks Unlimited (where he serves on the national Board of Directors) to host educational programs for students wishing to become wildlife managers.

Harris joins an extraordinary list of conservation leaders as a Chesapeake Champion They include Amy Haines of Out of the Fire Restaurant; Chip Akridge, owner of Harleigh Farms; Albert Pritchett of the Waterfowl Festival and Waterfowl Chesapeake; Jordan and Alice Lloyd of the Bartlett Pear; and Jim Brighton of the Maryland Biodiversity Project.

The Spy was there to capture some of the evenings best moments as Horn Point Director Mike Roman hosted the gathering of two hundred guests.

This video is approximately four minutes in length. For more information about the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science Horn Point Laboratory please go here