Monday December 30

Yesterday was about perfect until the clouds came in during the afternoon.  Today we expect rain before 10:00 am, then showers after 10:00 am. The rain could be heavy at times. High near 47 degrees, with an east wind 8 to 15 mph becoming west in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. Tonight we will have rain and snow showers likely before 10:00 pm, then snow showers and a low around 26. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.

I went to a number of local small businesses on Saturday in an effort to jump-start my holiday shopping. Got some nice goodies for gifts. Local enterprises are all hoping for a good season, so please shop local over the next month. Our local, small businesses are such an important part of the lake-area and give so much back to the community.  Please support them.  Here’s a list of our retail advertisers for some ideas.

Congratulations on a national level are in order: Sarah Fuller became the first woman to play in a Power 5 football game on Saturday when she delivered the opening kickoff of the second half for Vanderbilt against Missouri. Fuller, a senior goalkeeper on Vanderbilt’s SEC championship soccer team, sent the low kick to the 35-yard line where it was downed by Missouri. Pretty cool. Go Ms. Fuller!

Here’s a very nice photo of the full-moon as seen through bare trees thanks to Dot Sisler. I believe I see the local lake werewolf amongst the trees.  No, really…

full moon 11-29-20 dot sissler

Full Moon

The Garrett County Health Department received 18 additional positive COVID-19 results since the last report on Wednesday, November 25th, bringing the current county total positives to 702 as of Friday. The current comparison of Garrett County to state numbers is as follows:

  • 7-day positivity rate among Garrett County residents is 12.93% (Maryland rate is 6.3%)
  • 7-day case rate per 100,000 among Garrett County residents is 122.6 (Maryland rate is 37.21)

For those interested in free community testing for COVID-19, local testing events are being planned and will be announced as plans are finalized. Additional COVID-19 resources:

  • Visit garretthealth.org for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information.
  • To schedule a COVID-19 test or an Influenza vaccination call 301-334-7697.
  • For all other COVID-19 related questions, or to report a COVID-19 compliance issue, call the local COVID-19 Hotline number at 301-334-7698.

Yes, I am tired of reporting the grim COVID-19 counts, but I think people are really tracking and care about the local numbers and update information.  Hopefully, we will start seeing some relief in the near future.

There’s a special meeting of the County Commissioners this afternoon at 3:00 pm.  The meeting will be live streamed.  Go to this link for details on how to connect and for the agenda.

Uno at the lake is holding a Dough Raiser today in support of Garrett County Celtic Festival. Uno will donate up to 20% of your check to the Celtic Festival, but you must present this coupon when you go to pay. It is good for both dine-in or take-out.  The Celtic Festival is always good fun for the whole family, so your effort will be helping a great cause.

Celtic Festival

Celtic Festival Dough Raiser Tonight

Finally, have a great, safe and healthy Monday dear readers…

Friday November 27, Saturday November 28, Sunday November 29

The weather today will be mostly cloudy with a high near 49 and a low around 35. Isolated showers before 2pm, then scattered sprinkles after 2pm. West wind 3 to 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%. Saturday will be sunny with a high near 45 and a low around 30. West wind 8 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph. Sunday will be sunny with a high near 53 and a low around 39.

I hope you each had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! I have to admit, I’m a little disappointed we don’t have the traditional Black Friday sales… not so much for lack of the stuff or sales available but because “the girls” in the family had some good memories and laughs when we were up at all hours.

Nearby Alpine Lake Resort is holding their “most wonderful savings of the year” event at the pro shop, today and tomorrow from 10am – 3pm. The best-price for golf memberships and 30% off in the pro shop!

Also, MD DNR has exclusive products available in their online store. Black Friday deals! They have great prices on their 2021 calendar, “the gift of trees” and more!

Savage River Lodge is offering their annual gift card sale. For every $200 purchased now through midnight on Monday, November 30th, receive an additional $20 bonus*. That’s an extra $100 if you spend $1000! Tell ’em Deep Creek Times sent ya!

From the Small Business Administration: “Saturday, November 28, 2020 is Small Business Saturday – a day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for their communities. This year, we know that small businesses need our support now more than ever as they navigate, retool and pivot from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Please join the SBA and organizations across the country in supporting your local small businesses by shopping at a small business.

Here’s the link to our local small business advertisers — see how you may be able to shop local this Small Business Saturday!

Once you snag your sales, there is some solid fishing to be had. “At Deep Creek Lake, fishing for walleye has been good on some of the deeper drop-off areas.”

Here’s another photo from the training exercise that happened near Glendale road last weekend — sent in to us by Grant Callery:

Grant Callery Fire Training Exercise at Deep Creek Lake, MD

Thursday, November 26

The weather today will be scattered showers before 11am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 52 and a low around 40. West wind 9 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph.

By the way of local COVID-19 updates; the county currently has 684 Confirmed Positive Test Results (Garrett County Residents) with 246 Isolating (Garrett County Residents), and a 53% Occupancy Rate at Garrett Regional Medical Center.

On November 25, 2020, The Garrett County Board of License Commissioners / LCB formally adopted Temporary COVID Directives. Failure to comply will bring fines and a potential suspension of the liquor license.

I hope you each have a great Thanksgiving holiday even if it may be a bit different this year.

Wednesday November 25

Yesterday was nice – cool and sunny.  Today we have a chance of showers after 1:00 pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 53 degrees. South wind around 8 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50% during the day. Tonight expect rain with a low around 44. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New precipitation amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.

I can’t believe it is already Thanksgiving week and the month of November is just about over.  Anybody else feel that way?

We want you to make a commitment to staying active and enjoying the wonderful outdoors! Buy a black DCT “Turkey Day 5k” t-shirt for $22 and we will donate 15% of the profits to the upcoming House of Hope Food Drive. Message us today to buy your t-shirt! (And, keep an eye out for more virtual DCT fun!)

Unfortunately and understandably, the Allegany Arts Council has decided that it is necessary to cancel their 2020 Holiday Market. Although disappointed to let go of this fun and festive tradition, they assure us that they will be hard at work planning new ways to keep the arts alive in our region during these challenging times. For those who have already submitted information, refunds and arrangements will be made directly with the individual artist.

The Garrett County Health Department has been notified of an additional death due to COVID-19, bringing the total county deaths to four. Please be careful over the Thanksgiving holiday and beyond. Visit garretthealth.org for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information. Additional local testing events are being planned and will be announced as plans are finalized.

This recent cartoon in the Wall Streey Journal actually makes some sense during these crazy times!

wsj

This cartoon is right-on in 2020!

Don’t forget that this Saturday, November 28, is Small Business Saturday – a day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for their communities. This year, we know that small businesses need our support now more than ever as they navigate, retool and pivot from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Please join the SBA and organizations across the country in supporting your local small businesses by shopping at a small business. Please start with small businesses in Garrett County., including those that advertise and support Deep Creek Times.

And speaking of local small businesses, Deep Creek Lake Concierge says you still have time to decorate for the holdiays…and they can help.  Check out their site and spend time with your family instead of shopping/decorating.  Check out their site for an impressive list of services, from shopping, to excursions, to decorating for you.

OK, so you’re not going out and about much for the holiday and/or have some extra time on your hands. Something different to do as you stay home would be nice, right?  Check out this Census site showing all sorts of cool graphs, visualizations and infographics. There will be a test…

Thank you Lions.  Did you know that the Grantsville Lions have been installing the Grantsville Town Christmas decorations for the past 40+ years. The first decorations were plastic Santa Clauses, and the Lions Club has upgraded the decorations at least three times in the immediate past.  One of the upgrades resulted from a community fund drive which raised enough money to install new decorations and permanent electric hookups. This is another of the many service projects done by the Grantsville Lions Club. For more information about joining the club, contact membership chair, Lion Mike Downton at 301.895.3168 or assistant secretary PDG Gerry Beachy at 301.707.7200.

In keeping with our regular weekly schedule, Sarah will be penning Daily Notes for Thursday, so I want to wish all of our readers and their families a Happy, Healthy and Safe Thanksgiving. Gobble, Gobble…

Tuesday November 24

The weather for today will be mostly sunny, with a high near 42 degrees. Calm wind becoming southeast around 6 mph in the afternoon. Tonight will be mostly cloudy, with a low around 32

I took a dip in the CARC pool the other day and as usual, it was great.  But, I found out they are closed today, Wednesday and Thursday for the holiday, and will reopen on Friday.  Just wanted to make sure readers were aware of that.  Call the CARC for details and to verify.

Just Like You! is a Garrett County Health Department designed to remind all adults how important it is for them to be a positive role model for the children and youth in their lives. This year’s Just Like You campaign is administered by the Garrett County Health Department through funding from MDH and SAMHSA. For more information visit copycatfun.com or call Health Education and Outreach at 301.334.7730 or 301.895.3111. And of course, be a good role model for our youth now and throughout the year.

Hey there all you outdoor enthusiasts, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources wants to hear from you on a survey they have developed. The results of this survey will be used to improve their ability to provide the opportunities and services that fit the needs of their customers. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete. Click here to take the survey. This survey is designed to gather information and preferences from outdoor enthusiasts that access Maryland’s public lands and waters. All individual results will be kept confidential and used only by the Department of Natural Resources.

As the holidays approach, and as bad as 2020 has been for everyone, it is exponentially worse for our beloved seniors. According to Senior Care, seniors have accounted for 80% of COVID-19 deaths, 27% of seniors live alone and in a normal year nearly one-third experience sadness during the holidays. This year, it is expected to be even harder with many unable to spend the holidays with their families because of COVID-19. SeniorCare.com today released a report Top Holiday Gifts and Gestures For Seniors in 2020 after surveying more than 10,000 seniors and asking for their input on what gifts and personal gestures would bring them joy during the holidays. Below you will find the top 10 gifts, gestures, and key takeaways and the report contains a more extensive list.

Top 10 Holiday Gift Ideas Most Liked by Seniors:

  1. House Cleaning Service: 88% of seniors like this gift idea
  2. Chocolate: 87%
  3. Fruit Basket: 83%
  4. Cash: 79%
  5. Everyday Items (stamps, shampoo, etc.): 79%
  6. Meal Delivery Service (Uber Eats, Grub Hub): 78%
  7. Snacks: 78%
  8. Cheese and Crackers: 77%
  9. Gift Cards: 76%
  10. Automotive Service: 76%

Honorable Mentions: Flowers (72%), Streaming Subscription (60%), Spa Day (56%).

Top 10 Personal Gestures Most Liked by Seniors:

  1. Homecooked Meal: 90% of seniors like this idea
  2. Invite to Restaurant for Dinner: 81%
  3. Help with Technology (tablet, phone, kindle): 80% of seniors like this idea
  4. Phone Calls: 80%
  5. Help Around Home: 78%
  6. Declutter Garage or Basement: 78%
  7. Handwritten Cards: 78%
  8. Go Grocery Shopping: 77%
  9. Revive Family Traditions: 75% of
  10. Go for a Walk: 74%

Honorable Mentions: Clean the Car (66%), Watch a Movie (61%), Review Finances (58%).

And, speaking of the holidays, on Thanksgiving Day, many activities are occurring with friends and family in the home. “Holidays are a time of celebration. Please follow these simple guidelines to ensure a fire-safe Thanksgiving Day meal,” states Maryland State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci, who offers these following tips:

  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working properly by testing them. Additionally, ensure your guests are aware of all available exits if a fire would occur and have them meet at a designated location outside.
  • The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop to keep an eye on the food.
  • Establish a 3′ foot “Kids & Pets Free Zone” around any area where hot foods or drinks are prepared. Have activities that keep kids out of the kitchen during this busy time. Provide games, puzzles, books, etc., outside of the kitchen to keep them busy. Kids can also be involved with preparations with recipes that can be made outside of the kitchen area. Just in case, ensure you turn handles inward on the stove and countertop to avoid spills.
  • Keep a lid nearby when you are cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the burner, and then leave the pan covered until it has cooled.
  • Keep anything combustible – oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels, etc., away from the stovetop.
  • Eliminate clutter in the kitchen. A clean work area allows for better efficiency and fewer chances for mishaps.
  • Keep matches and lighters out of reach of curious children’s hands.
  • Do not leave lit candles unattended or in places where children or pets could knock them over.

Turkey Fryer Safety

  • Many turkey fryer appliances can be easily tipped over, allowing for hot oil spillage. Ensure you place them on a hard, level, and non-combustible outdoor surface.
  • Do not place a turkey fryer under an overhang or temporary roof. A flare-up can easily ignite materials above the appliance.
  • Partially frozen turkeys can cause a spillover and result in a flare-up. Thoroughly thaw the turkey before cooking.
  • Turn off the burner before placing the turkey in the container. Re-ignite the burner after you are sure it is safe to do so.
  • Always monitor the temperature of the oil. It can easily reach temperatures to the point of combustion.
  • Be careful not to overfill the fryer. Follow manufacturer’s guidelines for proper filling levels.
  • The handles and lid will get dangerously hot. Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts.
  • Never leave the fryer unattended while cooking. Keep an all-purpose (ABC) fire extinguisher on hand. Do not use water in an attempt to extinguish a grease fire.

Following these simple guidelines for fire and life safety will help to ensure a tragedy free holiday meal. Have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving!

And, speaking of gifts, and since I seem to have a lot of “lists” in today’s Daily Notes, here’s a listing of components and some information on a new non-credit course at Garrett College for those aspiring to become an administrative assistant: This multi-faceted course includes a bundled suite, where students will learn the skills needed to excel as an administrative professional or executive assistant. All courses are online.

Courses include:
  • Administrative Assistant Fundamentals- 1/13/21- 3/5/21
  • Administrative Assistant Applications- 1/13/21- 3/5/21
  • Effective Business Writing- 1/13/21- 3/5/21
  • Customer Service Fundamentals- 2/10/21- 4/12/21
  • Keys to Effective Communication- 3/17/21- 5/7/21
In addition to the courses listed above, students will be able to participate in the Administrative Professionals Day Conference held in April 2021. For more information or to register,
please email kaitlyn.glotfelty@garrettcollege.edu or call 301.387.3770. Total Cost: $695- Garrett County Resident

Monday, November 23

The weather was cool and moist most of the weekend.  Today we have a chance of rain and snow showers, mainly before 8:00 am. We actually got a dusting of snow overnight. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 36 degrees. West wind around 14 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%. Tonight will be mostly cloudy, with a low around 27.

My wife and I went down to the Cumberland fair grounds last week where they offer drive-through COVID-19 testing for free (note: they are only open on certain days/times) .  It was quick, easy, and the whole process was very well organized and professional.  We were out of there in 15 minutes. Still waiting for results, and we are fine, but thought it would be good to get tested.  I know there was also testing in Garrett on Friday and likely more coming up. I believe, as do many health specialists, that testing, masks and social distancing are keys to getting the pandemic under control!

Came a across a dwelling fire in Swanton off Glendale Road on Saturday.  It was a controlled training burn by the fire department of an old cabin. I must say, even though it was a relatively small structure, the fire was “intense” and I could feel the heat even from a distance.  My thanks to all those first responders that put themselves in harm’s way to protect us all.  Here’s the photo:

training fire glendale 11-21-20

Training Fire

The Garrett County Health Department reported Friday that it has received notification of 112 additional COVID-19 positive cases since the last report on Wednesday, as well as two deaths attributed to COVID-19. Both of the deceased were living in Allegany County long-term care facilities, but their official residency was Garrett County. As a general rule, COVID-19 cases are counted in the jurisdiction where they lived when infected, but deaths are attributed to the county of official residence. These additions bring the total cumulative case count in Garrett County to 511, and the total deaths to 3.

Garrett Regional Medical Center (GRMC) reached out over the weekend via a press release to make sure residents know that with the rise in COVID-19 in the region, GRMC stands ready to meet the health care needs of the service area.  The 55-bed acute care hospital has both the staff and capacity to care for COVID patients as well as the ability to care for patients diagnosed and hospitalized with other conditions. I believe we are truly blessed to have a great hospital like GRMC in our rural county and I put this in to make sure readers know GRMC is ready, willing and able to help should the need arise to help a given citizen.

A firm called Filterbuy recently conducted a study of ashma and other issues that could prove important relative to a COVID-19 diagnosis.I have not evaluated the firm or the methodology, so I leave that up to our readers. In summary, here’s the results:

The analysis found that in Maryland, 9.0% of adults report having asthma. The analysis also revealed a 32.2% obesity rate in Maryland. According to the CDC, obesity is associated significantly with the development of asthma. Here is a summary of the data for Maryland:

  • Percentage of adults with asthma: 9.0%
  • Percentage of adults who smoke: 12.7%
  • Percentage of adults in poor physical health: 10.0%
  • Obesity rate: 32.2%
  • Poverty rate: 9.0%

For reference, here are the statistics for the entire United States:

  • Percentage of adults with asthma: 9.7%
  • Percentage of adults who smoke: 16.0%
  • Percentage of adults in poor physical health: 12.6%
  • Obesity rate: 32.1%
  • Poverty rate: 12.3%

For more information, a detailed methodology, and complete results, you can find the original report on Filterbuy’s website: https://filterbuy.com/resources/cities-with-most-asthma/

Here’s a closer view of the “practice” fire off Glendale on Saturday.  It was still smoldering a bit on Sunday:

pratice fire jean 11-21-20

A Closer View

Have a great Monday dear readers…

 

Friday November 20, Saturday November 21, Sunday November 22

The weather today will be sunny with a high near 58 and a low around 44. West wind 14 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph. Satuday will be mostly cloudy, a chance of showers before 1pm, with a high near 50 and a low around 38. West wind 5 to 8 mph. Sunday will be mostly cloudy, A chance of rain or drizzle, with a high near 48 and a low around 35.

According to AccuWeather: Friday and Saturday will likely end up being perfect days for residents across the region to participate in a variety of outdoor activities or to complete any last-minute yard work. However, another dramatic shift in the weather is in store for the Northeast to end the weekend.

There are some nice light fixtures listed for sale in our Online Marketplace — here’s a peek:

The state of Maryland has launched the “Ask the Question” campaign; an effort to connect military service members with resources.

Here’s a preview of the GLAF 2021 Season:

Thanks for sharing this sunrise with us, Dot!

There’s a Community Information Gathering Session today from 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm to discuss the Yough River Watershed.

From the Garrett County Health Officer: “Because of the large number of positive cases across the region, if you test positive for COVID-19 it is important to immediately isolate yourself and remain in isolation for 10 days,” said Garrett County Health Officer Bob Stephens. “Contact tracers are having a hard time keeping up with the volume of cases. If you test positive, do your part to reduce the spread by calling your close contacts and asking them to quarantine for 14 days from their last contact with you. We all need to take personal responsibility to help keep others safe.”

With a rise in COVID-19 cases locally, don’t forget your options for Thanksgiving Dinner. I know the deadline for placing your order for Chef Debbie’s homemade specialties is today but you can order from MoonShadow or Cornucopia Cafe through Sunday.

Stay safe!

Thursday November 19

The weather today will be mostly sunny with a high near 56 and a low around 43. Southwest wind 11 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is conducting a survey deigned to gather information and preferences from outdoor enthusiasts. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete.

We heard that the 17th annual black bear hunt in Maryland is over and there were 117 black bears harvested with the largest weighing 537 pounds:
83 from Garrett County
23 from Allegany County
8 from Washington County
3 from Frederick County

Wisp Resort’s Mission: Four’dable is back — a four-pack of lift tickets are just $229 through Nov. 29th. Also, up to 2 unused Mission: Four’dable tickets from the 2019 – 2020 season can be utilized for the 2020.21 season. Read up on the options if this applies to you!

A socially distanced holiday? What better way to see allllll of Garrett County than taking a barn tour?

As promised, this page has the local Thanksgiving offerings — both in-person and to-go options.

The Maryland DNS is offering a webinar on the history of wild turkeys in North America and in Maryland as well as the biology and ecology of these fascinating birds. Also, learn more about how turkeys are a conservation success story in Maryland. The zoom presentation is November 26.

The owner of Ledo’s Pizza at Deep Creek Lake is opening a second location in LaVale. The LaVale Ledo’s will be at the former site of Pizza Hut along National Highway.

As of this morning, the local health department is reporting 399 COVID-19 cases. Garrett County continues with one of the highest COVID-19 positivity rates in the state. The local government announced that Garrett County Emergency Services, the Garrett County Health Department, and other local health care organizations have been working with each other to collaborate and organize response efforts in the community in the midst of the pandemic and are prepared for a surge in cases. Currently, the Garrett County Health Department is reporting three hospitalized cases of COVID-19 in Garrett County and Garrett Regional Medical Center is operating as normal with no capacity issues.

From the CDC:

Wednesday November 18

It snowed most of yesterday, but with limited accumulations.  Today we will have isolated snow showers before 1:00 pm. Mostly cloudy through mid-morning, then gradual clearing, with a high near 33 degrees. West wind 10 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%. Tonight will be mostly clear, with a low around 25.

Here’s a photo of my front yard yesterday afternoon:

mike front yard 11-17-20

A Dusting

Speaking of the weather, Garrett County now has weather forecasts, advisories, and alerts handled by a different National Weather Service (NWS) office beginning yesterday, November 17th. Garrett County will move from the NWS Pittsburgh Weather Forecast Office to the NWS Baltimore/Washington Weather Forecast Office in Sterling, VA. This change means that NWS Baltimore/Washington will now handle NWS forecasts and warnings for all Maryland counties west of the Chesapeake. Here’s more details.

Yesterday, the governor announced that, effective this Friday at 5:00 pm, all retail businesses and religious institutions statewide will revert back to the Stage Two 50% capacity restrictions. The 50% capacity limitation includes all retail, religious, personal services, indoor recreation facilities including social & fraternal clubs (VFW, Legions, etc.), any place that serves food and alcohol, fitness centers, indoor gaming facilities, indoor theaters (50% or 100 persons) and outdoor theaters (50% or 250 persons). Also effective 5:00 pm on Friday, all bars, restaurants, and facilities in Maryland where food and/or alcohol are served will be required to close by 10 pm. Takeout and delivery services are encouraged to continue, but in-person dining operations will not be permitted between 10 pm and 6 am. You can read the Governor’s amended order at https://t.co/vlbgCzvVDZ?amp=1 Thanks to the GC Chamber for this synopsis, which I edited down a bit.

For all you skiers and snowboarders out there, here’s a report on the expected ski season forecast across the country from AccuWeather.  It looks like a mixed-bag for the various regions according to this report.

Thinking about the holidays?  Well, personal finance site WalletHub just completed one of their studies that actually calculated planned holiday spending for a number of cities and towns and that also provides some additional national insight in this COVID-impacted world.  For example, merchants are still optimistic, and 54% believe holiday sales will increase “somewhat” or “significantly” compared to 2019, though they expect far more of those sales to be online than usual.

That’s all for today folks.  Stay warm and safe and have a good “hump-day” today and enjoy the downside slope of the hump the rest of the week…

 

 

 

Tuesday November 17

Yesterday was sunny, but quite windy.  As I get ready to publish these notes this morning, we are getting a light snow, with no accumulations so far. Today we will see snow showers with a high near 35 degrees. Breezy, with a west wind 16 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 34 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible. Tonight we will have scattered snow showers, mainly before 1:00 am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 23. Blustery, with a northwest wind 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.

We will be in a transitional, somewhat unique weather pattern across the county this week.  AccuWeather is calling it a “weather flip” and here’s the scoop.

This is quite concerning:The Garrett County Health Department has received 90 additional positive COVID-19 results since the last report on Friday, November 13th, bringing the current county total positives to 357. The three counties in Western Maryland have the highest 7-Day Case Rates Per 100,000 in the state. Compared to Maryland’s rate of 28.2, Allegany’s is 112.6, Garrett’s is 61.05, and Washington’s is 40.29. Visit garretthealth.org for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information.

Also relative to the pandemic, health officials continue to urge the public to avoid gatherings big or small, wear a mask in all public places, and maintain social distancing of at least six feet at all times. Frequently wash and disinfect hands and frequently touched surfaces, and stay home if you are not feeling well. “Our entire region is currently experiencing a huge spike in COVID-19 cases,” said Garrett County Health Officer Bob Stephens. “It is critical that we all stop exposing ourselves to the virus. At this point, the virus is all around us and we need to keep our guard up. Do not have family and social gatherings or attend high risk events where you cannot have social distance. It is a fact that this virus spreads when there is a break in protective measures. Although removing a face covering for eating and drinking is allowed in public settings, it is nonetheless risky to yourself and others.”

And also related to the pandemic: Effective today GRMC will be going to RED visitation status. This means NO visitors with the exception of OB patients who may have one person with them throughout the birth process, pediatric patients may have a parent or guardian accompany them, and patients who are in life’s end stages may have very limited visitation with immediate family.

11-16-20

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is reminding recreational anglers that they must have a valid license and any required permits or stamps to fish in Maryland. Due to the pandemic and the temporary closure of DNR’s licensing centers, a grace period was in place for existing license holders whose recreational fishing licenses expired during the state of emergency. That grace period will end on January 1, 2021. Licenses, permits, and stamps can be obtained at Maryland Department of Natural Resources Licensing Centers by appointment only, by visiting a retail sport license agent, or by using the department’s online COMPASS portal.

The MD DNR also wants to hear from you! The results of a new survey will be used to improve their ability to provide the opportunities and services that fit the needs of their customers. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete.

Alpine Lake Golf Course in nearby Terra Alta, WV (about 15 minutes south of Oakland) is holding a special Black Friday (and Saturday) golf membership sale in their pro shop.  The prices look very attractive and this is a really nice course, so I wanted to share with our readers on a budget or seeking to get some good old West Virginia style social distancing next year. Here’s the information.

First United Bank & Trust is celebrating their 120th anniversary in 2020!  To celebrate the 120th Anniversary of My Bank – First United is giving away 120 prizes! The top two cash prizes are valued at $1,900 and $2,020; representing the year First United began and the year they turned 120.  Here’s the link for more information and good luck! And, congratulations to First United.

Finally today, don’t forget that the commissioners are holding their monthly open public meeting virtually starting at 4:00 pm.  Here’s a link to the agenda.

Monday November 16

Yesterday was warm, but it actually looked like winter – gray, very windy, cloudy with some rain.  Today will be partly sunny, then gradually becoming sunny, with a high only near 41 degrees. Breezy, with a west wind 16 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 28 mph. Tonight we have a chance of snow showers after 1:00 am. Increasing clouds, with a low around 32. West wind 14 to 16 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Bundle-up folks.

Garrett County on Friday announced a new relief program to help restaurants in the county that have been impacted by the pandemic.  This sounds really helpful and should be welcome news for local food service establishments.  Here’s the scoop.

Here’s an interesting, heart-warming story about “Uncle Jimmy” and his move cross country to be with relatives during the age of COVID.  I know of some local friends and families, including some readers, that have or are considering combining households due to the pandemic and thought this might be useful.  Enjoy.

Pine Lodge Steakhouse is now offering $7 specials on mimosas and covic crush drinks on Sundays!  Fresh oranges sound really good about now.  Here’s a link to Pine Lodge’s menu.

Here’s a cool and unique photo from Debbie Workman taken on one of our county roads in the last few days. Thanks for sharing Dot.  Nice work.

DOT debbie workman 11-15-20

Fall Road

Mary Callis at Garrett Lakes Arts Festival (GLAF) invites all to GLAF’s virtual annual meeting on Nov 19th, at 5:00 pm: Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/98473583803?pwd=OEpkYk1aOWhKb2NuOG5aT3JNZW84UT09 Meeting ID: 984 7358 3803 Passcode: 374961

Calling all data geeks (like me!): You can now get the latest information on the most recent updates made to the U.S. Census Bureau’s new data platform, data.census.gov. Join them for this brief and highly focused webinar where their presenter will cover code releases, new available data sets, new features and functionality, and where you can find helpful resources. Here’s the link for more information on this short webinar scheduled for 2:00 pm on November 19th.

Have a wonderful, safe and productive Monday dear readers…

 

Friday November 13, Saturday November 14, Sunday November 15

The weather today will be gradually becoming sunny with a high near 49 and a low around 27. West wind 11 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 18 mph. Saturday will be mostly sunny with a high near 46 and a low around 37. West wind 5 to 8 mph becoming southwest in the afternoon. Sunday will be showers. High near 53 and a low around 32. Breezy, with a south wind 13 to 20 mph becoming west in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 25 mph.

Garrett 8 Cinemas has published their schedule for the weekend if you’re so inclined: Now Showing at the Movies

Planning your holiday at the lake? We’ll be compiling dinner options for you as several locations are offering complete meals to-go. Nearby Alpine Lake Resort being one prepared by a chef with a delicious-sounding menu. We’ll get the complete list by the beginning of next week!

As we mentioned, the annual Festival of Trees, as we know it, is cancelled due to COVID-19. However, they plan to keep the spirit alive and to raise crucial funds for the Dove Center, by offering a virtual tree decorating contest.  See the details here!

MD COVID Alert has just been rolled out to pair with Maryland’s traditional contact tracing efforts by using Exposure Notifications technology. This will notify users who may have been exposed to an infected person (you’ll have to opt-in).

A reminder of the St. Peter the Apostle Fall Fish Dinner held today! CARRY OUT ONLY from 11:30am to 1:30pm for lunch and 4:00pm to 6:00pm for dinner. Masks and social distancing required as per health guidelines.

Wisp Resort Job Fair is tomorrow November 14 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm. Explore a seasonal job for this winter!

Your opinion is wanted! Discuss the future of the Yough River watershed.

Thursday November 12

The weather today will be patchy drizzle and fog before 11 am. Cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly sunny, with a high near 49 and a low around 38. Northwest wind 5 to 8 mph becoming northeast in the afternoon.

The local schools have released several news items in the last 48 hours…

First, the Garrett County Board of Education voted on November 10, 2020, to move students to a red, fully virtual learning model beginning today, Thursday, November 12, and continuing until at least Thursday, December 10, 2020. GCPS is also canceling all in-person extra-curricular activities and athletic events and practices effective immediately. This decision was based on the significant increase in COVID-19 cases throughout Garrett County and the number of GCPS employees and students who are currently quarantining or isolating due to possible COVID exposure.

Click here to see a recording of that most recent BOE meeting.

FYI – schools and teachers will be communicating specific schedules for individual classes and/or students. Parents and students should reference school media sites, Schoology pages, and email for more information about specific schedules. As a reminder, the IT helpdesk can be reached by email at helpdesk@garrettcountyschools.org or by calling 1-888-285-7254.

There is also a statewide dashboard available to see COVID-19 outbreaks in the schools.

The Maryland State Department of Education presents its 2019 Maryland School Report Card for Garrett County Public Schools.

Dave Taylor, Coach of the Southern Garrett High School Wrestling Team, has been named the MPSSAA Coach of the Year for the 2019-2020 school year. Congratulations, Dave!

The Maryland Historical Trust announced several webinars over the next three months to learn about $600,000 in available funding for historic preservation grants through the Historic Preservation Capital Grant Program. Six webinars will be held ; applications for the grant funding can be submitted beginning February 2021.

Southern Squad Basketball (not affiliated with any school) is still planning to have their tryout next Monday at the Oakland Armory. Boys 6th, 7th, and 8th grade will go from 5-6 pm. Girls 6th, 7th, and 8th grade will go from 6-7 pm. Parents will be asked to come to the Armory lobby to fill out contact information and a waiver form. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Landon at southernsquadbball@gmail.com.

This is an amazing capture of how this November has been going so far…. Thanks to Dan Cullather for sharing!

Wednesday November 11

free flag clip art

Thank You Veterans!

Happy Veterans Day to all that have served our country and it’s citizens!  We appreciate you and yours and recognize we are the land of the free because of the brave! Thank you all for your service and I especially wish to recognize those that sacrificed all.

Yesterday was another great day weather-wise.  Today we can expect patchy fog in the morning with rain and highs in the mid 60s. Southwest winds 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain near 100 percent. Tonight we will have rain with lows in the 40s.

Did you know that on November 11, 1918, president Woodrow Wilson declared Armistice Day on the one-year anniversary of the end of combat in World War I? Armistice Day evolved into Veterans Day. The ending of the first world war over 100 years ago, on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, is the reason this day is used by our nation as a holiday to honor our veterans. Now you know.

With coronavirus cases rising, sending more Marylanders to hospitals and intensive care units, Gov. Larry Hogan on Tuesday afternoon announced a tightening of restrictions on restaurants and sought to discourage large family gatherings and parties. Here’s a link to a Baltimore Sun article with the scoop.

If you know Sarah and I, or are a long-time reader, you know we are both very passionate about entrepreneurship.  We have worked separately and together to help support entrepreneurs and small business formation in Garrett County and the region.  That is one reason this study caught my attention and I am sharing it: The study by Self, Inc. found there  are 112,760 female business owners in Maryland, which amounts to 41.4% of all business owners in the state. Out of all states, Maryland reports the 5th highest percentage of female business owners.

And, speaking of female entrepreneurs: While the Festival of Trees has been cancelled due to the pandemic, Deep Creek Lavender Farm (owned by Anne Davidson) will be open Friday, November 27th and Saturday, November 28th, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm., for holiday shopping. Because they feel the Dove Center provides a much needed service for our community and their main fund raiser is Festival of Trees, they will be donating 10% of their weekend sales to the Dove Center.  A donation jar will be available if you would like to make additional contributions. Way to go Anne.

While you are out and about shopping on Black Friday weekend (or any time), please be sure to visit and shop all our local retail establishments.  Our advertisiers are listed here.  Shop local and support the Deep Creek Lake area and please tell them Deep Creek Times sent ya!

Finally today, here’s a nice fall Kayak photo submitted by Eric Williams.  Not sure who the subject is, but it is well framed and shows the autumn light perfectly.  Thanks Eric.

11-10-20 eric williams

Fall on the Lake

 

 

Tuesday November 10

Yesterday was sunny and bright.  Today will be sunny, with a high near 69 degrees and a south wind 5 to 7 mph. Tonight we have a chance of rain after 1:00 am. Increasing clouds, with a low around 56. South wind around 7 mph.

Observation:  Folks around the lake are getting lots of mail from real estate companies letting them know there is significant demand from buyers seeking lake-area properties.  In my small sub-division, we have been seeing quite a lot of new listing and also sales activity.  This can be attributed to low interest rates, the pandemic and of course, the Deep Creek Lake area’s attractiveness to prospective buyers.

Here’s one of the reasons folks LOVE the Deep Creek Lake area.  Here’s a nice early morning photo of the lake (and Fido enjoying same) submitted by regular contributor (and early riser) Ed O’Connor.  Thanks for sharing Ed.

11-8-20 ed oconnor

Fall Morning at the Lake

 

In addition to the natural beauty of the Deep Creek Lake area, it is the people that reside, and also those that visit here, that make it a special place.  Here’s a link to a short release on one of those people, Deb Clatterbuck, who was honored this weekend by HART for all of her years of work in the county helping animals in need.  Congratulations Deb and THANK YOU!

Wednesday is Veterans Day and Pine Lodge Steak House in McHenry has a pretty sweet special for vets that day.  Here’s the scoop:

Pine Lodge vet day 2020

Specials for Veterans

The County Commissioners have their next public meeting scheduled for next Wednesday at 4:00 pm.  Here’s the latest, revised agenda and a link to additional sign-in information.team-up with a local child and provide

Every year, the Police Providing Presents program helps provide funding for our county police to team up with a local child to provide help to buy presents and other things for the child and their family in need during the holidays.  While things might change a bit this year due to the pandemic, they are still needing and accepting financial donations from the community. If you wish to make a donation, please mail or place in the Department of Social Services drop box at 12578 Garrett Highway, Oakland, MD 21550.  Please make checks out to GCDSS and note in the comments “for Police Providing Presents.”

The Garrett County Health Department has received 24 additional positive COVID-19 results since the last report on Friday, November 6th, bringing the current county total positives to 226. Visit garretthealth.org for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information.