Bethany Beach News
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The Southern Delaware resort area’s most unusual celebration takes place in the “Quiet Resort” of Bethany Beach on Labor Day, and everybody is invited, according to Carolyn Bacon and Marie Wright, the assistant chairpersons of this year’s Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral events, which will be celebrated on Monday, Sept. 5, and benefit Sussex County Habitat for Humanity.
(Editor’s note: This is the last in a series of previews of the 10 homes that will be on display during the 25th Annual Beach & Bay Cottage Tour, to be held July 27-28 from 9:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.)
One look at the cork-faced tower of windows and the tangerine front door, and it’s clear that this brand new contemporary home is not a typical South Bethany beach house. Designed to be a complete departure from the owners’ primary home in New Jersey, this canal-front retreat —which is just a short walk to the beach — is infused with a sense of fun that allows this active family of five to feel like they’re on vacation every time they walk in the door.
Natural light from the three-story glass tower streams in from the south through the open risers of the stairwell to warm the polished concrete floors on the first floor, opening up the space and making the home feel much larger than its 2,100 square feet.
A large glass garage-style door opens up the north side of the greatroom, beckoning to the deck and the canal beyond. Upstairs, a master suite is separated from the remaining three bedrooms on the top level, allowing for plenty of space and privacy for the couple and their three teenagers.
The choice of calm gray tones throughout the house is punctuated by whimsical wall art and pops of vibrant color, beginning with the front door and accenting each room beyond. Furnishings are modern minimalist but are warmed by natural wood elements that appear to soften every room. As longtime visitors to the Delmarva shore, the owners said they feel their new waterfront home is the perfect spot for the active lifestyle the family was seeking.
For years, one of Bethany Beach’s greatest attractions has been nestled amongst its best-kept secrets.
The town’s heritage walking trail — which, according to Carol Olmstead, chairwoman of the Town’s Cultural & Historic Affairs Committee, has been around several years now — offers a glimpse into the rich history and sometimes tumultuous past of the once-sleepy beach community.
A student worker from Moldova passed away earlier this week after being hit by a truck in Bethany Beach on June 26.
According to police, Anastasia Ciolpan, 20, who was residing in Ocean View for the summer, was riding her bicycle southbound on the southbound shoulder of Kent Avenue just north of Jefferson Bridge Road while Dustin L. Lowe, 23, of Frankford, was driving a 2011 Ford Escape southbound on Kent Avenue, approaching her from behind.
According to police, for unknown reasons, Lowe’s vehicle struck the bicycle from behind, knocking Ciolpan to the ground in the right lane, just east of the southbound fog line.
Lowe continued south on Kent Avenue without slowing or stopping, police said.
“Another bicyclist was riding with her and witnessed the crash. A passerby called 911,” said MCpl. Gary Fournier, public information officer for the Delaware State Police.
Ciolpan was initially transported by EMS to Beebe Healthcare, where she was stabilized before being flown by Lifenet to Christiana Medical Center, where she had been admitted in critical condition prior to succumbing to her injuries.
On Monday, Brett Warner joined a long list of public servants and local legends proudly serving grand marshal in Bethany Beach’s annual Fourth of July Parade.
The Town’s Fourth of July Parade Committee appointed Warner with the honor in recognition of his decades of hard work and leadership with the Town’s Public Works Department.
Having moved to the area with his family in 1969, when he was just 6, Warner has a long history with the local community. According to Warner, he started working for the Town in 1977, as a 14-year-old part-time summer employee.
Back then, the town was much different and the “development boom” had yet to take off.
“That’s the big thing that’s changed around here,” Warner said. “Back then, you look at big communities like Bethany West and they only had a dozen houses. Now look at them.”
Ocean View resident Michelle Meadows has had plenty of chances to perfect the art of the children’s book. Her eighth and most recently published book, “Super Bugs,” is designed for children and parents to enjoy, filled with vibrant illustrations of crawly creatures illustrated by Georgia-based Bill Mayer, as well as Meadows’ “bouncy” rhymes.
This weekend, Tidepool Toys & Games in Bethany Beach will be hosting Meadows for the launch of “Super Bugs” at 11 a.m. on Saturday, July 9.
“The Super Bugs Book Bash” will feature a reading, a book signing, light refreshments and an insect craft. The book, which is targeted toward children 2 to 6, follows a trio of heroic Super Bugs from morning until night as they save their fellow insects from hungry frogs, falling tomatoes and other dangers.
In addition to writing, Meadows has a strong passion for kids and for family. She grew up in Washington, D.C, with her older brother, Marcus, and her parents, Geraldine and Melvin. Even from a young age, Meadows always had an interest in writing — particularly poetry, for which she was involved in a number of school clubs.
Upon finishing school in D.C., she left to go to Syracuse University and studied magazine broadcasting and graduated a semester early, with the Class of 1991, before returning to D.C. to work for The Washingtonian magazine. Soon after, she got married to her husband, Rich, and they moved to Maryland, where they lived until her son, Chase, finished high school.
Bethany Beach Surf Shop owner Jim McGrath has a folder in his store that he says documents more than 300 instances of “confusion” between his store and another business in town.
McGrath says the folder contains evidence that the other business is selling “bootleg” T-shirts that use a logo very similar to the one on shirts he sells at the business he has owned for 36 years.
This weekend, Civil War enthusiasts will get the chance to meet with Bethany Beach author and Civil War historian Tom Ryan.
Warrior Beach Week is just around the corner
In 67 days, 25 military veterans and their families will travel to Bethany Beach for a week of support and relaxation, thanks to the nonprofit organization Operation SEAs the Day.
It was late last spring when Brittany Baker returned home from Puerto Rico, expecting to tend to someone else’s bar.
Spending the better part of her life’s so-far quarter-century in South Bethany, and after graduating from the University of Delaware, it was just something that she had always done — sticking together a routine résumé of winter world travel and growing up on sunny-season jobs along the Bethany boardwalk, swirling Dickey’s Frozen Custard, working at Breakers Surf Shop and slinging gin at area restaurants.
Then, she got a phone call.
“It was very random,” Baker said of the unexpected suggestion from long-time friend Erin Ternahan — whose family owns Breakers and, at the time, also owned the shop adjacent, formerly known as “The Parlour.”
“We were kind of joking — she was like, ‘Buy it — we’ll be neighbors. It’ll be like old times — like we’re 14 again.’”
No longer 14, when Baker brought the idea up to her parents, Ken and Ann Baker, one supper-night, it didn’t seem as funny as it did functional.
The family had long been boiling on ideas for a business in their hometown, never quite finding one cooked with enough consistency to stick to the fridge.
Until that night, when that one finally did.
One of the goals of the Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral this year is a serious one — to help improve the health and wellbeing of families in the greater coastal areas by supporting Sussex County Habitat for Humanity, according to Carolyn Bacon and Marie Wright, the assistant chairpersons of this year’s Jazz Funeral events.
All those who help organize and participate in the annual Jazz Funeral have a high level of appreciation for Sussex County Habitat for Humanity, said Bacon.
“The purpose of the Sussex County Habitat for Humanity programs are to build simple, decent, affordable homes in partnership with low-income families in Sussex County,” Bacon said. “This year’s 31st Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral and our 11th annual Jazz Funeral Silent Auction are dedicated to Habitat for Humanity.”
More funds are needed to continue SCHH’s Sussex County programs, according to Wright, who said she believes their need for “grassroots support” helps explain their approach to helping others.
“Habitat for Humanity’s philosophy is simple and straight-forward,” Wright said. “Habitat provides a ‘hand-up, not a hand-out.’”
Working in conjunction with the Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral is Sussex County Habitat for Humanity’s Development Director James A. “Jay” Gundy III.
“For 25 years, Sussex County Habitat has been putting God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope,” Gundy said. “It is a proven fact that when low-income families move out of substandard housing situations into simple, decent and affordable homes, they become healthier, the families are able to contribute to the community, and children learn and perform better in school.”
Drone hobbyists have been given official notice by the Town of Bethany Beach: Flying those increasingly popular unmanned aircraft over any property but their own is likely to get them in trouble.
There’s no way around it: Bethany Beach floods. Land in the town ranges from just below sea level to as much as 10 feet above it, with much of the town coming in somewhere between sea level and just 3 feet above.
Coastal Point photo • Shaun M. Lambert: Students from all over the world enjoy each other’s company during the annual international students picnic at St. Martha’s Episcopal Church in Bethany Beach on Tuesday, June 21.
Braving Tuesday night’s thunder-and-lightning extravaganza, international students gathered at St. Martha’s Episcopal Church in Bethany Beach for their annual welcome picnic. The students — all of whom are living and working in the Bethany Beach area this summer — enjoyed a buffet of American food and had a chance to get to know each other and members of the local community.
(Editor’s note: This is the seventh in a series of previews of the homes that will be on display during the 25th Annual Beach & Bay Cottage Tour, to be held July 27 and 28 from 9:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.)
The owners of this home had been enjoying vacations at her parents’ Bethany Beach cottage for the past 34 years when the house across the street became available. With a double lot that includes park views, there was room for a spacious new five-bedroom, five-bath retreat that would be big enough for them and their extended families to enjoy for generations to come.
From the marine blue shutters to the aquamarine backyard pool, the home reflects the owners’ vision to create a “beachy, blue and beautiful” retreat. Inside, the 5,500-square-foot home is saturated in myriad shades of sea-glass blue, evoking the nuances of the ocean, which is just blocks away.
While the 2016 summer resort season is just getting started, plans are in the works to celebrate the end of the summer season. Locals and summer residents will celebrate the end of the Bethany Beach summer resort season with their annual Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral, to be held on Labor Day Monday, Sept. 5, around 5:30 p.m.
When the Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company saw a shortfall of volunteers coming down the pike, they created a single 24/7 paid firefighter position. Just for this summer, they have one paid employee present 24 hours a day, from May 1 to Sept. 30, using only their part-time staff.
At their meeting on Friday, June 17, the Bethany Beach Town Council will consider new rules restricting the operation of unmanned aircraft — drones — within town limits, which could make it among the first municipalities in the state to adopt such measures.
Bethany Beach has been a home to Margaret Young since she was just 1 year old, when she joined her family in their annual summer treks south from upstate Delaware and southern Pennsylvania.
For the first few years, they stayed at the old Atlantic Apartments; then they moved closer to the beach, into their first of two homes on Second Street. In 1983, as her family expanded, they settled into a house in Bethany West, where Young still lives today with her dog Nacho.
When she was little, she said, they only came down for a week or two at a time. But after a few years, her family started coming down to the beach for a month or more, and Young settled into the rhythm of summer life at the beach.
On those mid-1900s summer days, Young said that, just like today, “Everybody went to the beach with their friends all day long, and you went to the boardwalk with your friends at night.”
The Bethany Beach Fourth of July Parade Committee is in the process of planning the 33rd annual event and is seeking participants. The event will take place on Monday, July 4.
The 2016 theme is “Celebrate Your Right to Vote.” The committee is looking for businesses and organizations to enter and compete for a variety of prizes.