Wednesday May 27

Yesterday was a nice day – warm and sunny.  Today will start off cloudy, then gradually become mostly sunny, with a high near 72 degrees and a low in the wee hours of around 61. Southeast wind 6 to 8 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.

Here’s a really cool photo submitted by Noah Farberow taken this weekend in Hazelhurst Cove.  The light is just tight on this one!  Thanks Noah!

Hazelhurst Noah F

Hazelhurst Cove

Just heard that New Germany State Park is now accepting applications for three cabin cleaners and one visitor services attendant. These are full-time or part-time, seasonal positions. Candidates must apply by June 10th at JobAps.com/md. Please spread the word if you know of someone looking for a seasonal position in a very nice, natural setting.

And, speaking of state parks, the annual State Parks and Trails Passport is now available ($75 for in-state residents, $100 for out-of-state) and grants unlimited day-use admission and boat launching at state parks, and a 10 percent discount on state-operated concessions and boat rentals. This year’s pass will arrive in a self-contained packet with a detachable hang-tag, and will be valid for a full year from the month of purchase. Our 75 state parks include more than 900 miles of trails for biking, hiking and horseback riding, as well as unique water access and camping facilities.

The Allegany Arts Council is now accepting applications for its 2020-2021 grants program. The program, made possible by County Arts Development funding of the Maryland State Arts Council, supports non-profit organizations and individual artists in the creation of activities, programs and placemaking efforts which champion the arts in our community.  Grant awards are for activities, programs, projects and operations which occur between July 1, 2020-June 30, 2021. Please review the eligibility and guideline information prior to applying. Information, along with the grant applications themselves, can be found by visiting our website. The deadline to enter is June 30, 2020.

Here’s a summary of a good idea from Judy Carbone and Lori Richards, homeowners at the lake.  They compiled and mailed a postcard to second homeowners at their primary address.  I wanted to share because it was innovative thinking and is for a good cause – helping non-profit organizations impacted by COVID-19.  Please check it out and give if you can.  Thanks for the good work Judy and Lori.

Local, state and national organizations are providing assistance to Garrett County residents experiencing difficulties
at this time. Friends of Deep Creek Lake have compiled a directory of some of the organizations accepting financial donations to support their efforts …and information on how to donate. Please give generously.

Garrett County Community Action Committee, Inc.
The County Emergency Management Office has asked Community Action to take a
lead role in coordinating donations, including cash, food and household items, volunteer services, transportation, masks, and specific needs associated with COVID-19.
How to Donate: www.garretthealth.org/community

The Garrett County Public Schools Foundation
The Foundation helps the Garrett County Public Schools provide over 800 meals to
students. GCPS is currently providing three meals a day to anyone under 18, through
15 sites throughout the County. How to Donate: By check payable to The GCPS
Foundation. Send to P.O. Box 11, Oakland, MD 21550. 301-501-0190.

The House of Hope
The House of Hope is a non-denominational, non-profit “network of concern” for
those in need in Garrett County. It operates four free food banks in the County.
How to Donate: Send check to P.O. Box 24, Oakland, MD 21550 or online
www.houseofhopegc.org

The Maryland Food Bank
The Maryland Food Bank distributes food to eligible soup kitchens, food pantries,
and shelters throughout the State. In Garrett County, it operates through the Oak
Park Church of the Brethren. How to Donate: www.mdfoodbank.org. Click “Donate”

The Dove Center
The Dove Center is a private non-profit organization providing safety, advocacy, and
counseling to individuals affected by domestic violence and/or sexual assault.
www.gcdovecenter.org. How to Donate: www.gcdovecenter.org/ways-to-give

It’s In The Bag
Serving Garrett County Public Schools, this program fills backpacks with food to send
home with children on the weekends, coordinated by St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church.
How to Donate: By check to It’s In The Bag, P. O. Box 303, Oakland, MD 21550.

United Way of Garrett County
The United Way has established COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund to provide
micro-grants to local nonprofits to aid with food, shelter, medical co-pays, and supplies. How to Donate: www.cuw.org/garrett/ or send a check to P.O. Box 394,
Oakland, MD 21550.

Western Maryland Red Cross
The Red Cross faces a severe blood shortage in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Monetary donations are also needed. How to Donate: www.redcross.org/local/maryland-delaware/donation or call 1-800-435-7669.

Other organizations needing your help:
• www.governor.maryland.gov/marylandunites • www.211md.org

Compiled by Garrett County volunteers Judy A. Carbone (judy@corgi-cottage.com) and Lori Richards (tolori@verizon.net).
DCC postcard 1.indd 1 5/

Tuesday May 26

After a great Memorial Day weather-wise, the weather for today also looks really good. The day will start with patchy fog before 9:00 am. After that, mostly sunny, with a high near 76 degrees and a low around 57.

The warm weather this weekend has (finally) caused the trees and shrubs to go into (almost) full bloom. Here’s a close-up photo taken by Joe Vitek of one of those blooms.  It’s not only a nice photo, but also a reminder to pause and take in the “little things” around the lake.  Thanks for sharing Joe.

Bloom from Joe Vitek 5-20

The Mountain Comes Alive

The Deep Creek Lions Club Meshach Browning coloring contest has received a number of entries (23 to-date to be exact), with the talent of the artists very evident.  Check out this video for the story and a sampling of entries.  Thanks for sharing to fellow Lion Chris Nichols.

With all the nice weather and the relaxation of restrictions all over the country, it looks like a lot of people took advantage of the holiday to go to the beach, mountains, pools or just get some fun outside time under their belts.  The lake area was certainly busy this weekend. I know there is concern among some about increasing cases due to the openings and I also know it is an uncertain, tricky balance between various factors. Let’s hope for the best and be positive, as we are all in this together.

Here’s a nice photo taken by Lisa Nichols this weekend while she was kayaking in Meadow Mountain cove.  Those clouds sure are cool looking.  Thanks for sharing Lisa!

Lisa Nichols 5-25-20

Kayaking on Meadow Mountain Cove

On Sunday, the Baltimore Sun reported that the total number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state had dropped from 1,320 to 1,290 since the prior day. That is good news. 

Testing late last week at a Garrett County nursing home facility uncovered seven new cases (four residents and three out-of-state staff), which brings our county total number of known cases to 10. Interestingly, all seven, from various age groups, were asymptomatic. Additional test results for the facility are still pending, with 188 negative results received for residents and staff so far.  That is very good news.

 

Monday May 25

While Saturday’s weather was wonderful, yesterday’s was cloudy, cooler and rainy.  Today will start with patchy fog, then turn mostly cloudy, gradually becoming sunny, with a high near 76 degrees and with a low around 59.

Happy Memorial Day!  Memorial Day is considered the most solemn holiday in the nation as we honor our fallen military heroes.  Originally started as Decoration Day to honor our Civil War fallen, it became a federal holiday in 1971.  And, while it has become somewhat of a rite of passage as the beginning of the summer season, we should all remember its origin and true meaning. That seems especially fitting as the nation continues the battle with COVID-19.

Michael McGovern, Director of Operations at Alpine Lake Resort, just over the border in West Virginia, shared the following photo and insight, from Alpine Lake’s annual Missing Man setting to honor our military fallen. They are not able to set up this year due to the pandemic, so sharing here and on other social media is appropriate and appreciated. Thanks for sharing Michael!

ALR Mem Day 2020

Missing Man Table at Alpine Lake Resort

Here’s an explanation of the symbolism that Michael sent over:

> In honor of our Veterans, Alpine has set a table to symbolize the unity of all members of the five armed services (Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and Coast Guard) as protectors and warriors under the same flag of our great Nation.  The Tablecloth is white, symbolic of the purity of their intentions to respond to their country’s call to arms.

> Red rose in the vase signifies the blood that many have shed in sacrifice to ensure the freedom of our beloved United States of America. This rose also reminds us of the family and friends of our missing comrades who keep the faith, while awaiting their return.

> The slice of lemon represents the bitter fate of the missing.

> Salt sprinkled is symbolic of the countless fallen tears of families as they wait.

> The bay leaf since ancient times have been made into wreaths and used to crown soldiers as the heroes they are.  Bay laurel is the symbol of wisdom and bravery.

> The half full glass of water represents the fact that the missing and fallen cannot partake and the feeling of loss family members feel when their loved one is deployed or does not return.

> The Bible represents the strength gained through faith to sustain those lost from our country, founded as one nation under God. Our Bible at Alpine Lake is open to Psalm 91 that asks God for his protection and the strength we find in his refuge.

> The Lit candle is reminiscent of the light of hope which lives in our hearts to illuminate their way home, away from their captors, to the open arms of a grateful nation.

> The single empty chair signifies the missing and fallen that aren’t present.

> Thank you to all who have served and are currently serving for our freedom!

I salute all of our fallen, thank all of our veterans for their service and wish all of our readers a peacful, happy, healthy and thoughtful Memorial Day.

Wednesday May 20

Yesterday was a bit dreary, with a little rain in the afternoon.  Today will be cloudy, with a high near 53 degrees and a low of about 41. It will also be quite breezy, with an east wind of 20 to 24 mph, with gusts as high as 39 mph.  Batten down the hatches!

Garrett College held their 48th commencement this weekend. Due to the coronovirus, it had to be held virtually, but that doesn’t diminish the great accomplishments of the almost 100 graduates.  I want to give a shout-out to the special award winners, including two stellar students Merlon Devine and Aryssa Corby that I had the pleasure of teaching.  They are both smart, hard-working and great individuals. Good luck to all the graduates!

On a negative note, the Sun reported yesterday that Maryland announced 1,784 new COVID-19 cases — a single-day high for the state — and 60 new deaths from the coronavirus Tuesday, as the state reached past 40,000 confirmed infections while reaching the cusp of 2,000 confirmed fatalities. Please be safe…

To identify which states have the fewest coronavirus restrictions, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 11 key metrics.  To view the full report and find out where Maryland ranks, click here.

Don’t forget that the Mountain Fresh Farmers Market is open on Saturdays.  There are special requirments due to the pandemic, so please click here in advance for special order and participation requirements.

I know and like the folks at First United Bank & Trust.  They have our business acount and they do a nice job of always being there for our community.  I sit on their advisory board and they are also an advertiser on Deep Creek Times, so I received an email from them yesterday and thought I would share the link.  If you are facing financial uncertainty, are looking for guidance or just want to investigate investment or loan options, they might be the one for you.  Just thought I would give them a little plug here…

That’s all for today folks.  Be safe and be happy!

Tuesday May 19

Yesterday was somewhat dreary, with limited periods of sun.  Today will be mostly cloudy, with a high near 56 degrees and a chance of showers throughtout the day and evening. East wind from 15 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 32 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20% and the low will be around 40.

Wow! Most high school students volunteer just enough to reach the required number of service learning hours, but Madison Prudnick isn’t like most students.  Madison volunteered for more than 700 hours at Partners After School @ Oakland during her 4-years at Southern High School. We wanted to thank and congratulate Madison on her stellar efforts and wish her our best as she begins her college career at Mount. St. Mary’s University in the Fall.

We heard from reader Patti M. with a question as to the status of Autumn Glory this year. The short answer is, we do not know at this time.  I have been asking around about that event and others and it appears leaders are taking a “wait and see” approach to making a final call. I think we all hope events such at Autumn Glory, Art and Wine and others are held, but we will have to wait for an answer as managers of those events process available information and make a decision. We will let you know as soon as we find out.

The Garrett County landfill, located at 3118 Sang Run Road, will be closed on Monday, May 25th for the Memorial Day holiday. Note, the six county collection sites will be open from 7:00 am – 6:00 pm that day. Also, full-service Saturdays at the landfill will resume for the season this Saturday. The scales will be open 8:00 am – 3:30 pm. You can contact Dave Baker at 301.387.0322 with any questions.

The Greater Oakland Business Association (GOBA) has some messages they shared with us yesterday:

With the COVID-19 pandemic, the GOBA Board has decided to postpone their Annual Dinner to later in October. It will be conducted as normal with a PowerPoint of the year in review and the celebration of any Oakland Business Milestones. The Asa McCain Spirit of Oakland Award will also be presented at this time. Sign ups for the annual dinner will come out with the Asa McCain Spirit nominations and voting information later in the year.

The GOBA Event Committee has decided to postpone the Kick Off to Summer Event, initially scheduled for June 20th, 2020. The committee will be meeting soon to come up with additional approaches for “events” downtown. Standby for more information about this event towards the end of the summer or perhaps some virtual events happening sooner.

There have been some questions “around town” relative to COVID-19 case reporting.  To address those questions the County issued a press release yesterday with explanations for any changes/deviations and I am repeating it here verbatim in case any readers have questions:

Why You Might See County COVID-19 Numbers Go Up and Down – By Garrett County Joint Information Center Team

If you have been watching the numbers on the Maryland COVID-19 Data Dashboard over the last few days you have seen the numbers for Garrett County go up and back down several times. There are many reasons why the numbers could change.

First of all, the numbers on the map are preliminary. In fact, below the map it says, “All data are preliminary and are subject to change based on additional reporting.” In Maryland, the numbers on the map are generated from a database where all the COVID-19 tests are reported. Once a positive case shows up in the database, staff at the health department for the county where the positive case is assigned begin to investigate the case.

Here are some of the issues that may cause a case to be assigned to the wrong county:

  • An incorrect address may have been recorded at the testing site and reported to the state.
  • The patient may have two different homes, in two different states. Research is needed to determine which is the primary residence.
  • Sometimes a person is tested a second time, and the case needs to be removed to avoid counting it a second time.
  • The automated system may mistakenly assign a case to the wrong county.

Why is it important to get it right? Because the county of primary residence is responsible for contact tracing, the process that finds close contacts of a positive case and lets them know that they need to quarantine so they don’t spread the virus if they have been infected. When a case needs to be transferred to another county, or another state, there is often a delay of a day or two before the case is changed on the map. Once the preliminary investigation is completed, the testing results are counted in the county of primary residence.

Key staff at both the local and state level are paying close attention to, and immediately investigating, any positive COVID-19 results. Information is shared across county and state lines as necessary to protect residents and health care workers in this ongoing pandemic, while safeguarding the privacy of anyone testing positive for COVID-19.

Another question many are asking is why the data doesn’t show up for any Garrett County zip codes. Again, the explanation is under the map, where it says, “Data for ZIP codes with 7 or fewer cases are suppressed.” None of the Garrett Counties zip codes show up in the reports, because the county does not have any zip codes with enough cases to show up on the list. The zip codes for low number locations are not reported to prevent specifically identifying a positive case within a small community.

Accurate COVID-19 information is critical to the community. Please visit the Health Department COVID-19 Dashboard at garretthealth.org/covid-19-information/ for current and accurate information about the situation.

 

Monday May 18

The weather this weekend was great, especially on Saturday.  Lots of folks out on and around the lake.  Today’s weather holds a 30% chance of showers, mainly after 10:00 am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 66 degrees and a low of around 48. Southeast wind 7 to 9 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph (higher in the evening).

My wife Jean was one of those out on the lake this weekend.  She took this photo from our kayak while out on Beckman’s cove.  Good job Jean.

Jean Tumbarello Barn on Beckman's Peninsula at Deep Creek Lake, MD

Jean Tumbarello Barn on Beckman’s Peninsula at Deep Creek Lake, MD

 

Here’s another nice photo submitted by reader Mary Freese.  Thanks Mary and great job!

5-14-20 Mary Freese

Beautiful Sky

According to state health officials, the number of coronavirus hospitalizations in Maryland — the main statistic Governor Hogan used to justify lifting a statewide stay-at-home order Friday — dropped by 40 patients as of Sunday. I believe Garrett County is at seven confirmed cases and our low numbers will hopefully continue.

Theater on the Lake (TOTL) just announced that there will be no summer season this year.  That is a bummer, but understandable, as they are impacted by the coronavirus issue like so many arts institutions. They definitely plan to be back in 2021 and are planning some virtual video recap efforts for this summer.  We’ll let you know when we know more.

Gone phishing?  Actually, you do not want to be involved on either side of the phishing hook! Even as we deal with so many global, national and local challenges related to conronavirus and other things, there are bad people out there trying to trick you.  I have had some training on this and I can tell you it is a growing threat and can be very serious.  What am I taking about you ask?  Go here to take a quiz on phishing, which is basically online trickery that obtains personal information from the victim.  Do it!

Here is some important information to share, understand and follow and as I know there has been some significant public discussion, or maybe I should say debate, since these changes were announced, I am including verbatim from the press release issued Friday by the Joint Information Team on behalf of the Health Department and County Government:

Safer-at-Home Advisory Replaces Stay-at-Home Order – By Garrett County Joint Information Center Team

As Garrett County moves into Stage One of Governor Hogan’s Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery process on Friday, May 15, at 5:00 p.m., the Stay-at-Home order is replaced by a Safer-at-Home public health advisory. The Governor strongly advises Marylanders to continue staying home as much as possible, especially older and more vulnerable Marylanders. Individuals who can work from home should continue to do so. Maryland citizens should continue wearing masks in indoor public areas, retail stores, and on public transportation. Additionally, Marylanders should continue practicing physical distancing, keep washing their hands often, and frequently sanitize high-touch areas.

“We are moving from what I would call government-imposed restriction to personal responsibility,” said Garrett County Health Officer Bob Stephens. “It is all of our responsibility now to protect our neighbors, our family, and our friends through things like social distancing, washing our hands, wearing face masks, and limiting our travel within the community.”

Of note in the Governor’s Order from May 13th is the fact that gatherings of greater than 10 people for social, community, recreational, leisure, and sporting are prohibited. Retail establishments may open at no more than a 50% capacity according to fire code. Also allowed to open with this capacity limit, and by appointment only, are beauty salons and barber shops. The following are to remain closed:

  • Senior centers
  • Restaurants and bars, except for take out or delivery
  • Fitness centers
  • Theaters
  • Bingo halls
  • Bowling alleys
  • Miniature golf
  • Social and fraternal clubs
  • Tattoo parlors
  • Tanning salons
  • Massage parlors

For more information on Governor Hogan’s Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery go to bit.ly/md-stage-one.

Have a great week dear readers!

Wednesday May 13

Yesterday was a pretty nice day.  I was able to get in a sunny walk late afternoon.  Today’s weather will include widespread frost, mainly before 7:00 am. Otherwise, sunny, with a high near 56 degrees and a low of about 40.

Reminder for this morning, at 9:00 am: Understanding the Employee Retention Tax Credit and Work Share Unemployment Program.  A good portion of the disaster loan and grant programs are maxed out, but these two programs could provide additional financial assistance for your business.  The Chamber member webinar is free to attend but registration is required. REGISTER HERE to receive the link or contact Holly Lane at 301.387.6171 or holly@garrettchamber.com.

Here’s a helpful resource put together by the folks at TEDCO for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.  TEDCO is one of the organizations that serves small businesses in the state in a number of ways. They have various levels of funding and assistance and their leadership has also been working with Governor Hogan on the state’s response to the pandemic.  ttps://www.tedcomd.com/news-events/covid-19-maryland-business-resources

Check out this virtual tour of the Deep Creek Lake area premiering this evening on Maryland Public Television at 7:30 pm.  It is part of their MotorWeek series of video adventures.  Here’s the link for more information.

Here’s some good news: The Board of Garrett County Commissioners announced yesterday that Comcast has expanded its footprint in the county by adding more than 370 serviceable addresses. This is a result of a collaboration between the County and the company to serve additional rural areas with broadband internet. The new addresses, adjacent to Comcast’s existing service area, are located along portions of Avilton Lonaconing Road, Bittinger Road, Foy Road, Mosser Road, New Germany Road, Oakland Sang Run Road, Sunset Ridge, Accident Friendsville Road, Foxtown Road, Rock Lodge Road, and Firetower Road. Additional areas are being considered, and residents along these roads are asked to call 1-800-COMCAST to inquire about service.

The Garrett County Chamber of Commerce will be hosting an online wedding chat on Monday, May 18, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. to connect couples with local wedding professionals. The online chat is free to attend but registration is required. Participants must register at visitdeepcreek.com/events/details/deep-creek-weddings-chat-32230 to reserve a spot. Seats are limited. Registration deadline is 10:00 am on May 18th to receive the link to participate. Questions should be directed to Kim Folk at 301.387.5238 or kim@garrettchamber.com.

The decision has been made that after 26 years, this year’s Chautauqua offering—Raising Their Voices—would be the last. Unfortunately, due to the continuing impact of the coronavirus, they will not be able to conclude with in-person performances. They are, however, working to bring you virtual performances in July and will announce the details next month.  This is sad news, as GLAF and Maryland Humanities do a great job with this every year and it is a fun and educational endeavor.  We will let you know more when we hear further details.

Tuesday May 12

Yesterday was cool, blustery and we had snow showers much of the day.  Today will have widespread frost before 8:00 am. Otherwise, mostly cloudy, then gradually becoming sunny, with a high near 47 degrees. There will also be areas of frost after 3:00 am. Otherwise, partly cloudy, with a low around 32. West wind 6 to 11 mph becoming light after midnight.

I love this photo from reader Matt Dugan.  Great job and many thanks for sharing Matt.

Matt Dugan

May Moon

The Commissioners are holding their next public meeting a week from today on May 19th at 4:00 pm.  The meeting will be Live-Streamed at https://www.facebook.com/garrettcountygovernment/  For more information please click here.

As a few readers pointed out, the message I posted from POA of Deep Creek Lake needed some clarification.  Bob Sutton of the POA must have agreed, as they sent out this update yesterday, with input from Commissioner Paul Edwards. Here it is, again verbatim from their latest communication:

In connection with the announcement of the Order, Governor Hogan stated that people traveling into Maryland from anywhere outside of Maryland are required to self-quarantine for 14 days. Interpretive Guidance COVID19-08, which the Office of Legal Counsel issued on March 30, 2020, clarifies that the requirement for travelers into Maryland to self-quarantine does not apply to people who regularly commute into Maryland from an adjacent state or the District of Columbia or vice versa, or to people transiting through Maryland who have only minimal contact with Maryland (i.e., only stopping for fuel, food, or other necessary supplies, not making contact with anyone for more than three minutes at a distance of less than six feet). Commuters must follow federal and state health department guidance regarding self-quarantining (for example, because of recent travel to the New York/Tri-State area) even if not required to self-quarantine under the new Maryland requirement. 

A fairly lean  news day folks…

Monday May 11

The weather over the weekend included sun, clounds, snow and rain, with Friday and Saturday having some serious wind gusts at times. Here’s a photo from my front porch Friday afternoon:

Mikes Front Yard

Friday Afternoon Snow

After a warmer and sunny Sunday, the weather for today will be cooler and hold a chance of rain and snow showers before 1:00 pm, then a chance of rain showers, with a high near 40 degrees. West wind 11 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph. There’s a chance of snow showers in the evening, with a low around 31.

Even with the cooler temperatures and staying pretty much at home the last two months, my wife and I still do carry-out once a week or so.  And Saturday, we wanted some great Italian food, and that means Brenda’s Pizzeria.  Here’s an “action photo” of the carry-out team (and my order ready to go) as I was ready to take the goodies home for us.  We had chicken parm and eggplant parm, which not only tasted great but got us thinking of the simple pleasure of dinner out, hopefully in the near future. Can’t wait to get back to “normal.”  Thanks to Brenda, JB, Jeanne and the whole team for offering carry-out during these crazy times!

Brendas Pizzeria

Saturday Night Carryout at Brenda’s Pizzeria

Don’t forget that us locals (and second homeowners and visitors) need to support our local small businesses.  Here’s the link to our shopping and food establishments, many of which are open (and/or online) during the pandemic.  Please check out the list and support our community!  Thanks.

And, along those lines, here’s a very positive piece on Deep Creek Lake by the NBC affiliate in Washington DC.  Looks like Railey, Wisp and a lot of other local enterprises have a good plan and are ready to open. Check it out!

Even as we plan for better times, Maryland officials reported Sunday that the state has confirmed 1,053 new cases of COVID-19, which brings the total for Maryland to 32,587 known cases. Twenty-eight more people died due to complications from the illness since Saturday, bringing the state total up to 1,538 fatalities.

The Chamber is hosting a member webinar on Wednesday, May 13th, at 9:00 am on Understanding the Employee Retention Tax Credit and Work Share Unemployment Programs. While most of the disaster loan and grant programs are close to maxed out, these two programs could provide additional financial assistance for your business. The webinar is free to attend but registration is required. REGISTER HERE to receive the link or contact Holly Lane at 301.387.6171 or holly@garrettchamber.com.

Bob Sutton of the Deep Creek Lake Property Owners Association sent out a reminder and nice summary of the Governor’s order that went into effect last week.  I know we have reported on it, but it is important, so here’s the POA’s summary, pretty much verbatim for your reference and review (and see below for a nice photo of the result at the lake):

“As of 7:00 am May 7th, 2020 Governor Hogan lifted the recreational boating ban for Maryland. The following link gives additional information: Click Here.  A summary of the current rules are:

BOATING

Recreational boating activities, including motorized and non-motorized vessels and personal watercraft, are permitted, however:

• Boaters must be with immediate family members or people with which they reside. o No more than 10 people can be on a boat at one time, including captain and crew.

• Boats must be distanced from each other by at least 10 feet and are prohibited from rafting up, beaching, or having rendezvous events.

o Boats are prohibited from docking at restaurants or bars. Marinas can reopen to recreational boaters, but must adhere to Maryland Departments of Commerce and Health guidelines.

BEACHES

The state park beach will be opened and outdoor exercise such as walking, jogging, running, swimming, and fishing will be permitted, however:

• Guidance on social distancing must be followed.

• The prohibition on social gatherings must be strictly followed. Chairs, blankets, and picnics will be prohibited.

CAMPING

DNR will begin accepting reservations for overnight tent and RV camping in state forests, parks, and other campgrounds, however:

• Campers must be with immediate family members or people with which they reside.

• Guidance on social distancing must be followed.

• No parties or reservations for more than 10 people will be granted for any one site.

FISHING

Recreational fishing activities, including catch-and-release, are allowed, however:

• When fishing from a boat, one must be with immediate family members or people with which they reside.

o No more than 10 people may be on a boat at one time, including captain and crew.

• When fishing from onshore or at a dock social distancing guidelines must be followed.

• Fishing tournaments remain prohibited at this time.

IMPORTANT—The Maryland stay-at-home order remains in effect. If folks come to Garrett County from elsewhere in the State, they are still expected to self-isolate for 14 days in order to prevent spread of the COVID19 virus.”

Finally, here’s a nice photo as submitted by Tammy Cross, of a happy young fisherman and his catch taking advantage of the restrictions being lifted.  Nice photo and nice job young man! Better times and a great summer season are on the way! I feel it coming…

Young Fisherman

First Catch of the Season!

Have a great Monday folks!

 

May 2020 Cover Story

COVER STORY – Deep Creek Times May, 2020

Garrett County Community Coming Together to Help its Own

Note: This Cover Story is adapted from a press release issued by the Garrett County Joint Information Center Team, as well as photos from and interviews with, local volunteers and others in the community. Edited by Mike Tumbarello.

We have been relatively fortunate to-date as a community.  While the disruptions to our lives and our way of life have been significant, and many institutions and individuals are impacted, we are blessed to have only five known COVID-19 cases to-date (as of 5/6/20), with no deaths.  That is likely due in part to the swift action of state and local authorities, our mountain geography and also to those that have provided help to our community.  This Cover Story is dedicated to those that are volunteering their time and expertise to help their neighbors and our community.

Before I get to our volunteers, I want to give a very big shout-out to all of those workers on the front lines every day, especially those in health care, and including everyone stocking, driving, delivering, cleaning, cooking, cashiering, policing, etc., etc., etc.  We thank you all.

At present, the Garrett County Joint Information Center is directing all questions and local offers of donations related to COVID-19 to Garrett County Community Action. The non-profit has been appointed to manage all local contributions related to COVID-19 such as homemade face coverings, food assistance, volunteer sign-ups, and cash donations.

A volunteer portal has been designed by the Health Department to aid Community Action with critical digital infrastructure and work as the “top of a funnel.” The portal collects contact information via short forms and shares the offer with a designated volunteer coordinator who will respond to volunteers individually.

“We launched a survey at the end of March to gauge community needs, especially related to food insecurity, unemployment, and other vulnerabilities as well as how people are helping others,” said Shelley Argabrite, Chief Health Strategist for the Population Health, Innovation & Informatics Unit at the Health Department. “In less than 24 hours we received over 1,000 responses. From the survey data, we built the volunteer portal to address the main concerns. We listened to your feedback and are responding with a streamlined way to organize volunteers.”

Interested persons can reach the volunteer portal at www.garretthealth.org/community and choose from a variety of ways to assist the community. Visit the portal frequently to check for updates. For those who are not online, any offer of support can be initiated by contacting Courtni Helmick, Family Self-Sufficiency Manager at Community Action, by calling 301-334-9431 ext. 6143. Cash donations are encouraged by the county COVID-19 response team and will be graciously accepted.

“The outpouring of support from our community has been truly inspiring,” said Helmick. “Times are certainly a little scary because there is so much unknown, but that has not stopped Garrett County! The portal is a wonderful tool to get the entire community involved and this pandemic has allowed community partners the opportunity to collaborate and create new ideas to best serve our community.”

Community Action is working closely with fire and rescue locations around the county to be convenient drop off sites for food and cleaning supplies. Please check the Portal for contact information, a list of requested food donations, and future donation specifics. Food giveaways are being coordinated by Community Action.

“We deeply appreciate all those who are able and willing to give during this time to those who are struggling to feed their families,” Argabrite said.  “Agencies are working together to ensure no one goes hungry. A second COVID-19 survey is available here at bit.ly/surveynumbertwo. Your input drives change and helps us understand the needs of this community. Please consider taking this important survey.”

“The portal has been a wonderful tool to get the entire community involved. I have already received responses from people wanting to donate food and masks, transport essentials to those who need them the most, and help in any way they can. Normally, in a crisis people will shut down, but that is not the case for Garrett County. We have come closer together and more willing than ever to help those who are affected most by COVID-19. It has truly been humbling to see so many people from within and outside our community donate needed resources and or their time to fulfill the needs within Garrett County,” stated Helmick.

From what we have heard here at Deep Creek Times, the portal has indeed been a huge success to-date, with very significant amounts of food procured and thousands of dollars raised for those in need.  With the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and our economic recovery, I am sure they could still use donations so please check out the site link listed above or call Courtni.

Finally, here’s a few “action photos” below of our local volunteers for you.  Please feel free to send in your own photos and we will run them in an upcoming Daily Notes.  Thanks for reading and thanks for caring and Sarah and I wish all of our readers a safe and healthy future.

Photos:

Southern Rescue Squad

Donated Food at Southern Rescue Squad

 

Civic Club

Modeling Masks Made by Oakland Civic Club – Darla and Bill Soles

SRS

Southern Rescue Volunteer Trista Aronhalt

Linda Bradley of Oakland Civic Club Making Masks at Deep Creek Lake, MD

Linda Bradley of Oakland Civic Club Making Masks

 

Wednesday May 6

The weather for today will include showers, mainly after 2:00 pm with a high near 42 degrees and a low of about 29.  That low will contribute to the chance of snow showers between 1:00 am and 2:00 am this evening.

So, if you thought April was wet and cool, here’s the official numbers as submitted by Glenda at Garrett Regional Medical Center: Average high temperature for the month was 56.7 degrees, average low was 34.8 degrees, with 7.24 inches of rain and 1.3 inches of frozen precipitation for the month. I could use a little more sun and warmth and a little less rain in May.

Here’s some interesting statistics from a new study for your consideration: There are 34 million single-person households in the United States. Since COVID-19 has prompted shelter-in-place orders across the country, those living alone are completely isolated, and job losses are not mitigated by help from roommates. Maryland has 604,272 adults that live alone, which is 13.2% of all adults in the state which is the 9th lowest percentage of adults living alone among all U.S. states. Here’s a link to the full study by Self Financial for your reading pleasure. Please think about reaching-out to someone in our community that is living alone.

And speaking of statistics pertinent during the COVID-19 pandemic, WalletHub just released a report on the best and worst states for nurses in the US.  Where did Maryland come-in you ask?  Click here to find out!

Closer to home, Garrett County Health Department was notified yesterday of one additional confirmed case of COVID-19 in Garrett County. This new positive case is a person in her 20s who is employed at an Allegany County facility with a known outbreak, and she is isolating at home. A total of 286 COVID-19 tests have been administered in Garrett County, with 249 negative results and 5 positive results for Garrett County residents.

The next Chamber Business After Hours to be held on May 14th from 4:30 – 5:30 pm, will be virtual!  This virtual networking event is a fun opportunity for everyone to see each other again and reconnect! This event is free to attend. Register online at visitdeepcreek.com or contact Holly Lane at holly@garrettchamber.com. Upon your registration, you’ll receive an email confirmation with the link to join the event. Please make sure to also register through zoom as well.

The McHenry United Methodist church has land they are willing to let parishoners and even non-parishoners use to cultivate a small garden. Donations are welcome but not mandatory. Anyone can participate by calling Pastor Acord at 301.387.9059. Plot size depends on the individual, as does planting. There is even a pavilion for those working in the garden to take breaks in the shade. That is certainly a nice gesture!

 

 

 

Tuesday May 5

Yesterday was a very nice day.  A little breezy, but nice and sunny.  Today will be cloudy and cooler, with a high of 46 degrees and a low around 36.  There is a chance for precipitation during the day and definitely in the evening.

Here’s a close-up photo of the first apple blossom of the season, as photographed by regular reader and contributor Joe Vitek.  Thanks Joe!

First Apple Blossom

First Apple Blossom

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is seeking citizen input during the scoping period relative to some potential changes to brook trout fishing regulations.  Here’s the link to the page that explains more on the scoping for brook trout and other species that will impact us in Western Maryland.

While the earliest cases of coronavirus in the United States were reported primarily in urban areas, which still remain hardest hit, there is increasing concern about the impact of the pandemic in rural America. Here’s a very inreresting, thought-provoking, short paper on the comparative numbers, trends and potential implications.  Check it out!

Here’s a nice letter from Garrett County Health Officer, Bob Stephens, that shows his thoughtfulness and humanity along with his desire to win this war on coronavirus.  Thanks Bob!

This Thursday, May 7th, is the National Day of Prayer, as observed annually on the first Thursday in May.  This day of observance, designated by the United States Congress, asks people “to turn to God in prayer and meditation.” The modern law formalizing the annual National Day of Prayer observance was enacted in 1952 and each year since, the President of the United States has signed a proclamation, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day.

For you history buffs: Before 1952, there were a few other individual National Days of Prayer in United States history:

  • July 20, 1775 – The Continental Congress issued a proclamation recommending “a day of public humiliation, fasting, and prayer” be observed.
  • In 1795 –  George Washington proclaimed a day of public thanksgiving and prayer.
  • May 9, 1798 – John Adams declared this day as “a day of solemn humility, fasting, and prayer.”
  • March 1863 –  On March 3 Abraham Lincoln signed a Congressional resolution, during the Civil War, which called for April 30, 1863, as a day of fasting and prayer.

Monday May 4

Saturday was a nice day at the lake.  Sunday, less so, with some showers in the afternoon.  Today will be mostly sunny, with a high near 53 degrees and a northwest wind of 13 to 17 mph. Monday night will see Increasing clouds, with a low around 36.

Maryland continues to see increases in confirmed cases and deaths from the coronavirus, but Saturday showed a slight decline in hospitalizations, which state officials have said is key to eventually easing restrictions. There were 989 new cases in Maryland reported on Sunday. Hopefully, we will see a positive trend develop in coming days.

Garrett County celebrated and thanked our Healthcare Heroes on Saturday.  Here’s a link to some nice photos of many of them.  Thanks folks for all you do to keep us safe and our community great!

HART sent this over: #GivingTuesdayNow is a new global day of giving and unity that will take place tomorrow, May 5th – in addition to the regularly scheduled December #GivingTuesday – as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19. Help HART continue their mission to save the lives of homeless animals. To donate, you can visit their website, or by mail to HART, P.O. Box 623, McHenry, MD 21541, or by calling them at 301.387.7729. Please help the fur-balls if you can!

Here’s a look at HART’s numbers year-to-date through April:
Low-Cost/No-Cost Spays & Neuters: 216
Rescue & Transports: 186
Adoptions: 66

Maryland Humanities has announced a $500,000 CARES Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Emergency Relief Grants Fund.  This is a new funding opportunity for Maryland nonprofits who offer humanities programming as a significant part of their mission. The goal of this new fund is to help sustain Maryland’s infrastructure to ensure that organizations can continue to provide opportunities for public humanities programming and civic learning in Maryland’s diverse communities.

Have a great, productive and healthy Monday folks…

 

 

Wednesday April 29

Yesterday was another cool, dreary and rainy day.  I am thinking that after the last few weeks Mother Nature owes us some good weather soon and a great summer season as well. Today we will have a chance of showers, mainly after 2:00 pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 65 degrees and a low of about 48. There will be a southeast wind of 7 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 29 mph.

Kista Powell, teacher at Northern Garrett High School, has been named the 2020-21 Garrett County Teacher of the Year. Ms. Powell teaches Allied Health and Biomedical Science at Northern High School. She has been employed by Garrett County Public Schools since 2014.  Congratulations Kista.

Here’s a sign of the times.  Falling Rock at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort is opening-up on May 8th, but with a twist.  You will have your own personal butler.  Really.  They will practice social distancing and are touting it as “Five Star Service from a Distance.” That’s innovative.

Under pressure from media and others, the state has agreed to post data on COVID-19 cases at nursing homes, which account for most COVID-19 deaths in some counties.

The Deep Creek Lake Lions Club has postponed its boat auction that had been scheduled for May 16th. It will hopefully occur in June, with a date TBD. I will keep you informed and please reach out if you have a boat you wish to donate.  This is a big fundraiser for the club and the proceeds go to help many in the community.

Looking for something enriching and different to do at home during the pandemic? Want to learn a new skill that could be used for your own personal interest or to advance your business? Then consider this online course on Blogging and Podcasting for Beginners at Garrett College that can get you started and help you learn how to develop a plan for content, setup, and maintenance. Here’s the scoop. h

That’s it for today folks.  Some technical Internet problems causing a somewhat truncated version of these Daily Notes.  Have a safe and healthy Wednesday.

 

Tuesday April 28

Yesterday was cool and cloudy until mid-afternoon, when the sun came out.  Today, showers are likely, mainly between 7:00 am and 2:00 pm. Cloudy, with a high near 52 degrees and with a low around 46.

So, I have some inside information that Barbie and Ken just had a Deep Creek Wedding.  Yeah, that Barbie and Ken and here’s a photo to prove it!  If you want some more insight as to what the heck I am talking about, go here.  More photos too. Oh, they are already on their honeymoon… at the lake, of course!

Barbie and Ken

Barbie and Ken at Deep Creek!

Even as Governor Hogan has prescribed his three-phase process to open-up the state, Maryland is expected to continue to see an increasing number of COVID-19 cases, since the state is increasing the number of tests being completed. Because of this, the main gauge officials will use to determine when the first phase of recovery can begin is the statewide rate of hospitalizations and the number of patients admitted to ICU.

The Chamber invites members to hear an update on the CARES Act and a discussion on returning to work. Stephen McAllister, Executive Director of the Eastern Region, Congressional & Public Affairs for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, will discuss the recently passed supplement to the CARES Act including new funds for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) & Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program. He will also discuss returning to work https://wallethub.com/blog/social-distancing-survey/73704/.and reopening the American economy including how Americans and businesses can return to work safely, successfully and sustainably. Here’s the link to more information.

Here’s some interesting factoids from a recent survey conducted by WalletHub: Social Distancing Survey

  • Online shopping is a popular stress reliever: 36 million Americans use online shopping as their number one way to cope with social distancing.
  • Nearly half the population still ventures outside: 48 percent of Americans go outside at least once a day while self-quarantining.
  • Women worry more: Women are 40 percent more likely to feel anxious than men due to social distancing.
  • People want to see family most: 34 percent of Americans are most looking forward to seeing family once this is over, more than the amount that are most excited to see friends or go out to eat.
  • Most Americans use masks: 60 percent of Americans are now wearing face masks due to the coronavirus.
  • Social distancing provides an opportunity to build skills: Almost 29 million Americans are using the social distancing time to learn something new.

The complete survey results can be found here. There’s also information on the states: where it is easiest and most difficult to attain social distancing.

Finally, Manor Steakhouse just sent over their latest menu and a reminder that they are doing carry-out every week on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  Jean and I have gotten their carry-out a few times recently and the process is easy and the food is great. Please call between 3:00 pm and 7:00 pm to order your dinner (240.488.1104). Check them out and send me a note if you have a nice takeout story from Manor or another local-area establishment. Here’s a link to our Dining Guide.

Have a great Monday folks…