Dollars & Sense

Bethany Beach arcade adds new games in the name of Shore Fun

Coastal Point • Marissa McCloy: The new ‘Walking Dead’ game transforms the zombie television series into a fast-paced arcade game. Right, Arcade tickets already have the playland’s new Shore Fun name and logo.Coastal Point • Marissa McCloy: The new ‘Walking Dead’ game transforms the zombie television series into a fast-paced arcade game. Right, Arcade tickets already have the playland’s new Shore Fun name and logo.This summer, Arnie’s Playland is lighting up Bethany Beach with several new digital games and looking to put the Shore Fun back in the downtown arcade.

Space Invaders Frenzy is the most popular of the new games, according to manager Eric Esterson. The game has an 8-foot LED display, dual cockpit seating and mounted gun cannons.

Another addition is “The Walking Dead” — a game based on the AMC television show — in which players shoot the undead with crossbow controllers.

The arcade’s newest pinball machine is a “Ghostbusters”-themed game.

These changes are all part of the updates put into motion by the arcade’s new owners, Esterson said.

Arnie’s Playland has served up family fun for 34 years. There were once two locations, but now the sole arcade location is on Garfield Parkway in Bethany.

In addition to the new digital games, the arcade also has six new Skee-Ball machines.

“We currently have 15 Skee Ball machines, but we are trying to get down to about eight,” said Esterson, who added that Skee Ball is still popular among customers, even with the more technologically-advanced game options now available.

Good Earth offering dining from its organic garden

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Shrimp and grits is just one of the fresh dishes made a Good Earth Market.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Shrimp and grits is just one of the fresh dishes made a Good Earth Market.It seems fitting that an organic market has grown at such a… well… organic pace since it first opened 14 years ago.

Good Earth Organic Market in Clarksville and, more recently, Rehoboth Beach has now added dinners and events to its growing list of offerings, and early indications are that the new venture will blossom like the rest of the business has.

Much of that confidence comes because of, and from, the market’s new chef, Nino Mancari, who comes to Good Earth after years in some of the area’s most successful restaurants.

With the Good Earth kitchen garden in place and literally buzzing with activity these days, and with a number of successful farm dinners held on the grounds in recent years, owner Susan Ryan has expanded the vision for the business to include not only dinners served on the premises Wednesday through Saturday evenings, but also “pop-up” happy-hours on Fridays. Good Earth, which already hosts weddings and other special celebrations, will now provide food for those events in-house.

SCAOR: Recent sales data continues upward trend in local real estate

Data released last week by the Sussex County Association of Realtors (SCAOR) continued to indicate a strong local real estate market in southern Delaware, representatives said this week.

German grocer ‘Lidl’ could make big impact in Millsboro

They may have recently wrapped up their most successful Fourth of July celebration at Cupola Park in years, but for the town of Millsboro, the fireworks are just getting started.

Kingsley Orchards revives blueberry farm

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: From left, Anchors Aweigh Entertainment owners Jason and Summer Phillips are working with Kingsley Orchards owners Tony and Meghan Morgan on hosting a Family Fun Day at the orchards this weekend.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: From left, Anchors Aweigh Entertainment owners Jason and Summer Phillips are working with Kingsley Orchards owners Tony and Meghan Morgan on hosting a Family Fun Day at the orchards this weekend.For years, Frankford’s old fruit farm was a jungle of weeds set among the cornfields on Blueberry Lane. Only the birds and the locals knew that, somewhere under the tangle, blueberries were still a hidden treasure.

But now, Kingsley Orchards has re-opened the beloved blueberry patch once known as Ryan’s Berry Farm. The farm had changed hands several times before the Meghan and Tony Morgan family picked it up at a 2016 sheriff sale.

Kingsley is an old family name that stems from Meghan’s paternal family tree. The husband-and-wife team began clearing the land that fall, and Kingsley Orchards opened in mid-June as a you-pick blueberry farm with a retail storefront. So people can venture into the fields or quickly swing by the retail store.

Tony Morgan regularly buys and flips land from sheriff sales. But housing developments flew out of his mind when he actually saw the blueberry bushes, curtained by 10 years of weeds and trees.

MGT & Co. Toggery bringing luxury brands from land and sea to Fenwick Island

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Michael Thanner and ‘Gracie’ are bringing some land and sea style to Fenwick Island.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Michael Thanner and ‘Gracie’ are bringing some land and sea style to Fenwick Island.Dress like John F. Kennedy. Speak like Ernest Hemingway. Work like Ralph Lauren. And party like Gatsby.

That’s the mantra of Michael Thanner and the MGT & Co. Toggery, which recently launched in Fenwick Island to offer the “Low Country” a taste of the high life when it comes to premier men’s clothing and the latest in luxury fashion.

While the Ralph Lauren lifestyle and fictitious Jay Gatsby may have been a very real inspiration for Thanner and his new experience-centered men’s boutique, catering to weddings in West Egg isn’t the only focus at MGT & Co.

Whether it’s picking up a dress shirt from Mizzen+Maine for dinner at Just Hooked right next door or a pair of swim trunks from Rhythm for trying to hook dinner at the drive-on beach across the street, the Toggery aims to keep their wide-range of customers covered, literally, with everything from headwear to footwear.

“We’ve got everything you could need from head to toe — there’s something for everyone,,” Thanner said. “It’s classic, it’s American and it’s simple, but at the same time, it’s very unique.”

It was through his various travels that Thanner formed the concept behind what’s become an eclectic selection of contemporary classics at MGT & Co.

‘25 Years of Good Food & Good Evenings’

Sedona celebrates 25th anniversary with brand-new look, menu inspirations

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: The crew at Sedona is ready to celebrate their 25th anniversary this summer with some all new offerings in Bethany Beach.Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: The crew at Sedona is ready to celebrate their 25th anniversary this summer with some all new offerings in Bethany Beach.It’s a greeting as simple as it is signature.

On every warm summer night since 1993, Marian Parrott has welcomed every one of her guests in the same warm way: “Good evening, and welcome to Sedona.”

With the award-winning Bethany Beach restaurant currently celebrating its 25th anniversary, Parrott will lend the familiarity of the phrase to the title of her upcoming opus, “25 Years of Good Food & Good Evenings.”

But while the book will be a celebration of the restaurant’s past — even getting into the location’s World War II days as the Collins Tea Room — in honor of their 25th year, the team at Sedona is equally celebrating their future with summer specials, the formation of the “Sedona Social Club” (coming this fall), a revamped menu and a completely renovated restaurant aesthetic.

Ruley, Diettrick, Viselli headline SoDel stars behind new Bluecoast location

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: The chefs at the new Bluecoast in Rehoboth from left, Scott Viselli, Doug Ruley and Jason Diettrick.Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: The chefs at the new Bluecoast in Rehoboth from left, Scott Viselli, Doug Ruley and Jason Diettrick.Choosing the right menu took about 10 months. Choosing the right blueprint for their now 10th restaurant took nearly that long, too.

But even with the layout designed entirely around the restaurant’s open kitchen — setting the stage for the chefs of SoDel Concepts more so than ever before — choosing the right chefs for the job took hardly any time at all for SoDel Concepts President Scott Kammerer and Vice President/Corporate Chef Doug Ruley.

“It was important to us to make the open kitchen a focal point, so you could see the action and from every seat,” said Kammerer of the new Bluecoast location on Route 1 in Rehoboth Beach, which celebrated its grand opening earlier this month.

“An open kitchen connects you more to the food and connects you more to the chefs. We’re a chef-driven company at SoDel Concepts. The chefs are the stars — and these are three of our biggest.”

Newlyweds launch Sandy Pony Donuts food truck near Bethany

Coastal Point photo • Shaun M. Lambert: Sandy Pony owners Brea Reeves and Ben Wang, top, show off a dozen of their made-to-order donuts.Coastal Point photo • Shaun M. Lambert: Sandy Pony owners Brea Reeves and Ben Wang, top, show off a dozen of their made-to-order donuts.They may have been still dodging rice, but for the young newlywed couple, it was time to make the doughnuts.

After saying their “I do’s” on June 3, Ben Wang and Brea Reeves were off to the Bethany Beach area just one week later, for the grand opening of their new food truck, Sandy Pony Donuts, on Saturday, June 10, trading in a honeymoon suite for a sweet honeymoon.

“You could say this is our honeymoon,” said Reeves, with a laugh. “We literally are together every second of every day now.”

“Hey, it was her decision to want to work with me,” added Wang, joking back. “I’m probably the harder one to work with, because I always manage to get in the way somehow. But it’s just always worked out.”

Three Blonde Bakers get literal with new 3BB Café next door

Coastal Point photo • Shaun M. Lambert: Cassidy Baker, left, and Brittany Baker show off one of the 3BB Cafe's new homemade ‘cake-pops’ and croissants. Coastal Point photo • Shaun M. Lambert: Cassidy Baker, left, and Brittany Baker show off one of the 3BB Cafe's new homemade ‘cake-pops’ and croissants. The name Three Blonde Bakers was already all but famous along the Bethany Beach boardwalk, whether it be for their scoop selection of Vanderwende Farm Creamery classics or ever-changing array of off-the-wall homemade fudge flavors.

But the now-officially-baking blonde Bakers are no longer just fudging around when it comes to that name being literal, recently launching their latest boardwalk venture with the 3BB Café in the space right next door.

“Cassidy has always wanted to open up her own bakery,” said Brittany Baker of her younger sister and Baker-family baking authority, Cassidy Baker, who learned her trade at Ruthie’s Bakery in Bethany. “When the Orheleins [Michael and Hope] told us that they were moving the gallery across the mall, we knew we had to go for it.”

“People would always come up and asked about baked goods, with the name,” added Cassidy Baker with a laugh. “It’s definitely nice to finally have an established bakery now.”

County Bank to host community shred event

Identity-theft prevention and giving back to the community are two main goals of County Bank’s community shred event on Friday, June 16.

TOP BUN

Top Dog Grill aims to serve up something new in Bethany Beach

Coastal Point photos • Shaun M. Lambert: Owners Darin Dryden and Adam Lehman show off some of Top Dog Grill's offerings.Coastal Point photos • Shaun M. Lambert: Owners Darin Dryden and Adam Lehman show off some of Top Dog Grill's offerings.They may not be saving the skies in the 1986 action-thriller “Top Gun,” but Darin Dryden and Adam Lehman might as well be Goose and Maverick when it comes to saving Bethany Beach from what they see as the usual options of boardwalk dining — and their mission to serve up the town’s “Top Bun.”

With Dryden’s experience in business and Lehman’s in the culinary arts, the two long-time friends teamed up last summer with the aim of offering the area something new, opening the doors to Top Dog Grill in June of 2016.

“We’re trying to offer a good, affordable option in Bethany, and trying to do it a little differently than everybody else,” said Lehman.

“It’s something that we’ve wanted to do for a while,” added Dryden. “Both of us are here every day. He’s got the culinary background. I’ve got the business background. My wife’s an accountant, she does the books. It’s a good team.”

Taco Taco now serving up breakfast breakfast

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Kevin Martin and Stephanie Baker show off some of the new menu items at Taco Taco.Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Kevin Martin and Stephanie Baker show off some of the new menu items at Taco Taco.They’re doing it quick. They’re doing it simple. They’re doing it the customer’s way.

And now, they’re doing it for breakfast, too.

Kevin Martin and Stephanie Baker first introduced their “good food fast” philosophy to Millville with Taco Taco in the winter of 2016, enjoying a successful first summer season while offering up “fresh Mex” fare for both lunch and dinner, whether dining in or ordering out.

That’s the same concept that Taco Taco will stay true to this summer, with the addition of the all-new a.m. menu-options making their burrito-board debut by popular demand.

“Just about anything that you could want for breakfast, we’ve got it here,” said Kevin Martin. “Everyone who’s tried it has had nothing but good things to say. People are coming back. We’ve even had people come in from California and the Southwest and tell us that it was the best breakfast burrito they’ve ever had.”

‘Fins fam’ finds home in Bethany with Fins Ale House & Raw Bar

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Head chef Celaso Morales, left, owner Jeff Hamer, second from right, and Director of Operations Briana Roviske gather with the crew during their opening-night celebration last Thursday, May 25.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: Head chef Celaso Morales, left, owner Jeff Hamer, second from right, and Director of Operations Briana Roviske gather with the crew during their opening-night celebration last Thursday, May 25.It’s what Jeff Hamer, president and founder of the Fins Hospitality Group, likes to refer to as “being the rising tide.”

The long-time restaurateur has built his success directly around that of his “Fins family,” ever since his days of launching his very first venture in Rehoboth Beach.

“That’s why we like to say, ‘It’s the rising tide,’” Hamer explained. “If we can provide good-paying jobs, we can lift the people up around us, then the community just becomes stronger. [Our employees] all have families, homes in the areas, mortgages, their kids are in school — they have a stake in the community.

“That’s really been our blessing — it’s not about me when people say they love Fins,” he continued. “It’s the employees. They’re the ones that do it. I come up with the ideas and kind of paint broad strokes, and they’re the ones that make it happen. They make Fins, they really do.”

Big Chill Beach Club breaks out umbrella room with a view

New restaurant at state park offers inlet and ocean views, beachfront eats

Coastal Point • Submitted: Big Chill Beach Club has a view of the Indian River Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.Coastal Point • Submitted: Big Chill Beach Club has a view of the Indian River Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.Like a summer sun rising above the Atlantic Ocean, the large yellow umbrella atop the concession building at Delaware Seashore State Parks concession stand signals a fresh start.

The umbrella is the signature piece of the new Big Chill Beach Club; it sits atop the venue’s glass-enclosed eating area. That area is surrounded by a large deck, where diners can enjoy 360-degree views encompassing the ocean, the Indian River Inlet Bridge and the Indian River Bay.

Those who would rather keep their feet in the sand can do so by taking their food back to the beach or by sitting at tables in the sand at the new eatery.

A partnership between Delaware State Parks and La Vida Hospitality Group, the Big Chill Beach Club brings to the venture the group’s experience with its other projects, Crooked Hammock Brewery, Restaurant & Backyard Beer Garden; Fork+Flask at Nage; Taco Reho food truck; and the original Big Chill Cantina.