2013 Year in Review: Recap of the News from the Third Quarter
The South River Source attempts to cover a little bit of everything in South County news—from crime to business to schools to those people making a difference right here in our community. We thought it might be fun to look back through the year in news. It was too much to do in a single post, so we’ll look back, by quarter (here’s Q1 and Q2). Now on to July through September:
ATW Hardware in Edgewater closed after 26 years in business (July 9). Over the July 4 weekend, ATW Hardware owner Ted Kramer said that he was pulling the plug on his hardware store after 26 years at the Edgewater location. Kramer said that changing demographics and the rise of big box stores put a serious dent in business. Once Kramer’s son was settled in a line of work outside of the retail-selling-hardware business, he felt like he could call it a career.
Shady Side residents were uneasy about the business plans of a man (July 10), Timothy Whitney, who acquired property on Snug Harbor Road with plans to move his marine repair business from Annapolis. Whitney was on the hot seat at a community meeting in July. He bought the parcel in 2009. It was formerly the site of the Andrews Hotel. It has been a vacant lot since the hotel burned down in the 1980s. After Whitney purchased the property, he used it to store a collection of old equipment. In 2011, neighbors took Whitney to court over the unsightly collection that he had stored on the site in plain view. That lawsuit was resolved in April of 2013. Whitney has yet to break ground on his building plans.
Blue Tomato Farm in Harwood closed its CSA (July 18). Shawn Sizer, owner of the community supported agriculture (CSA), posted in a note to customers that they had a problem with deer eating their crop. Sizer’s farm grows organic produce, including over 50 vegetable varietis, 120 different heirloom tomatoes, 25 kinds of peppers and a dozen herbs.
Saunders Point Man Takes Plea in Edgewater Sex Abuse Case (July 26). An Edgewater man, John Charles Villiers Farrow, took an Alford plea in a sex abuse case involving two teen boys. The abuse occurred between 2000 and 2008. Farrow is the brother and former spokesman for Mia Farrow, his actress sister who was once married to Woody Allen. Farrow was initially charged with 39 counts for molesting the boys, who were neighbors. At the end of October he was sentenced to 25 years in prison with all but 10 suspended.
The Capt. Avery Museum ushered in a new era with the appointment of a new Executive Director (Aug. 1). It wouldn’t last terribly long, but Jeff Holland, former director of the Annapolis Maritime Museum in Eastport, was installed as the new part-time director in early August. By years’ end, Holland took a full-time position as the executive director and riverkeeper for the West/Rhode Riverkeeper. Holland’s focus, during his short tenure, was to beef up the education, exhibits and public relations/marketing of the museum. They are now looking for a replacement.
Broadstripe Cable cut the ribbon on their South County hub, which would enable them to bring broadband internet access to under-served communities in South County. The initiative, part of the Inter-county Broadband Network (ICBN), a federal and state initiative to bring technology to rural communities. At the heart of the program is bringing community institutions online — these include schools, libraries, fire and police stations and medical facilities. Homeowners get to benefit by signing on once the community connections are made.
Annapolis cyclist killed after being struck by a car on Riva Road in Davidsonville (Aug. 22). Patricia Cunningham, 50, a cycling enthusiast, coach, wife and mom to three was killed while riding her bicycle along Riva Road near Bears Point Road on Wednesday evening (Aug. 21). At the end of the year, a Grand Jury in Annapolis refused to indict the driver, Whtney Anne Decesaris, 37, of Huntington, on criminal charges. Decesaris instead was charged with negligent driving and other traffic offenses.
A homeowner in Edgewater took a burglar into custody by himself, then waited for police to arrive. According to a police report, a man was watching television in his living room when he saw a suspicious person in his driveway. He went to investigate and found the suspect, Matthew Thomas Chrismer, 29, in his garage attempting to steal food from a refrigerator in the homeowners’ garage. Police arrived and took Chrismer into custody. Chrismer took a plea to fourth degree burglary in mid-December for the crime.
South River High School teacher Jodie Hogan was named one of seven finalists for Maryland Teacher of the Year (Sept. 3). Hogan teaches Spanish at South River High School. She was nominated for the award by SRHS Principal Will Myers. Hogan was named Anne Arundel County Teacher of the Year in April 2013.
In business news, Honey Hive bakery opened in South River Colony Main Street (Sept. 6). A week later, Annapolis Seafood closed their Edgewater location. No worries though – the South River Source provided readers with alternate South County seafood stores.
On Sept. 9, South River Source got an exclusive look at the new $45 million Smithsonian Environmental Research Center facility. We got tons of photos, which we of course shared with readers.
Jack Creek Park opened in Shady Side on Sept. 20. We were there to capture the photos and give an overview of the park and how it will be used. One of the big benefits of Jack Creek is that it will be used as a site for public water access.