SATURDAY 5/23: Art & Music at Barrier Island Center

Saturday, May 23, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Art and Music on the Farm at the Barrier Island Center in Machipongo. Over 40 juried artists and artisans as well as amazing food, farming displays, music, plants for your gardens, and so much to see and enjoy. Come join us for the day. Tickets $5 adults, children free.

MONDAY 5/25: Memorial Day Service Across from Library

A Memorial Day service sponsored by American Legion Post 56 will be 11:15 a.m. May 25 at the War Memorial across from the Cape Charles Library.

FRIDAY 5/29: ESO Live! with Mike Hawker

Friday, May 29, at 8:00 p.m. — ESO LIVE! with Mike Hawker. ESO​ Arts Center​ is located at 15293 King Street in Belle Haven. Admission $10. [Read more…]

SATURDAY 5/30: ‘Havana Nights’ Benefit for Arts Enter at Oyster Farm

Mini Cubano sandwiches, authentic vegetable, beef, and chicken enchiladas, and Columbian chicken stew are just a few of the delicious menu items being prepared for the 19th annual Benefit by the Bay. The “Havana Nights” party includes champagne, dinner, dancing, and an auction/raffle, all beginning 6 p.m. Saturday, May 30, at the Oyster Farm at Kings Creek  in the new Pearl event center. [Read more…]

June 1 Deadline for 4-H Camp Registration

Northampton County 4-H Junior Camp will be held July 6-10 at Airfield 4-H Center in Wakefield for children ages 9-13; campers must be 9 years old by September 30.Participants do not have to be a 4-H member.  The cost is $245 which includes transportation, meals, lodging, classes, and a t-shirt.  Camp scholarships will be available through United Way and the Northampton Farm Bureau which also paid for the buses to Wakefield. For more information or to register a child contact the Northampton Cooperative Extension Office at 757-678-7946 or email [email protected] or visit http://offices.ext.vt.edu/northampton/programs/4h/index.html. Registration deadline is June 1; no deposit is necessary to register. [Read more…]

Children’s Summer Programs at Northampton Library

The Northampton Free Library in Nassawadox has opened registration for several of its children’s summer programs. We have events for different age groups and some for all ages. Our full schedule with descriptions can be seen on the library website, www.espl.org or you can stop by or call the library (757-414-0010) for more info. There are programs on boating safety, container gardening, owl pellet dissection, book bingo and dinosaur model creation to name a few.

SATURDAY 6/6: CBES Clean the Bay Day at Oyster

Team CBES wants you for CLEAN THE BAY DAY. The Chesapeake Bay gives the Eastern Shore so much: great seafood, jobs, recreation, and an amazing way of life. On Saturday, June 6, let’s give back during the 27th Annual Clean the Bay Day. Join Citizens for a Better Eastern Shore, “Team CBES,” and lend a hand with shoreline litter and debris clean-up in Oyster. [Read more…]

Publish Your Event in the Cape Charles Wave

Holding an event of interest to the general public in or near Cape Charles? Send an email to
[email protected] and your event will be listed in ON THE TELEPHONE POLE. Events will normally be publicized the same week they occur. Deadline for submission is the preceding Saturday.

SATURDAYS: Freestyle Yoga at Cape Charles Yacht Center

Saturdays beginning May 23 through September 5 at Cape Charles Yacht Center, 8-9:15 a.m.: Slow Flow Yoga. This class is a beautiful way to start your day by the Chesapeake Bay. [Read more…]

TUESDAY 5/26: Gardening for Butterflies at Eastern Shore Public Library

At 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 26, Gardening for Butterflies on the Eastern Shore of Virginia with Master Naturalist Carolyn McGavock opens the 2015 season of Fourth Tuesdays at the Library, an initiative of the Friends of the Eastern Shore Public Library. McGavock will share tips about using native plants to plan a butterfly garden and the variety of butterflies these plants will attract.  Before moving to the Shore, she owned a small nursery with a display garden.  [Read more…]

SATURDAY 5/30: Mayor Proto Delivers ‘State of the Town’ Address

Cape Charles Mayor George Proto will update the citizens on a variety of topics including statistics and information from department heads at the “State of the Town” meeting 10 a.m. Saturday, May 30, at the Cape Charles Civic Center. Attendees will have an opportunity to voice their concerns and ask questions.

MAY 30/31: Annual MS Ocean to Bay Ride Starts in Cape Charles

2015 Bike MS: Virginia’s Ocean to Bay Ride, May 30-31, starts and finishes in Cape Charles. Overnight at YMCA Camp Silver Beach. Route Options: 60 miles Saturday or 36, 75, or 100 miles each day. CLICK for details.

SATURDAYS: Tony Sacco Raising Funds to Send Rising Star to NYC

Good folks of Cape Charles and visiting tourists: I [Tony Sacco] will be performing, playing my clarinet in front of the Palace Theatre on Saturdays to raise money badly needed for Miss Hannah DeMarino to attend school in NYC to further her career in voice, drama, and dance. Hannah is struggling to raise money to enter the school; although she received a grant she needs more funds. I am donating my time playing my clarinet on the street and accepting your donation as I have the children dance to my music. I pray this will be a success for Hannah. If you missed her debut in ESO Live, “a star was born” when she electrified the audience. [Read more…]

TUESDAY 6/2: Northampton Teacher Recognition Banquet

The Northampton County Education Foundation invites the Northampton County School District’s community of friends and supporters to celebrate excellence in teaching on Tuesday, June 2. At its annual Teacher Recognition Banquet, the District’s Teacher of the year, other outstanding teachers and the 2015 retirees will be honored. The festivities will begin at 6:30 p.m. at Franktown United Methodist Church, 7551 Bayside Road. Banquet tickets are $15 and are available at both Rayfield’s Pharmacies (Cape Charles and Nassawadox) and the Northampton County District Office in Machipongo, or call Bill Payne at 757-331-4047. [Read more…]

THURSDAY 6/11: Train to Be an Oyster Farmer

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is looking for a few good men, women, and children to grow oysters from backyard piers and docks to help restore the Chesapeake Bay. CBF will host a workshop to train volunteers on Thursday, June 11, from 6-8 p.m. at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science Eastern Shore Laboratory, 40 Atlantic Avenue in Wachapreague. Volunteers at the workshop will receive a batch of spat-on-shell oysters (baby oysters attached to shells), two 18” x 9” oyster growing cages, and instructions on how to maintain an “oyster garden” throughout the coming year. [Read more…]

Reverse Angle Parking Off to Shaky Start

(Wave photo)

(Wave photo)

reverse angleCAPE CHARLES WAVE

May 18, 2015

According to the diagram above, Cape Charles’s new “reverse angle parking” on Mason Avenue is supposed to be a three-step process: Signal, Stop, Reverse. But the white Audi station wagon above didn’t get that memo, and made a wide turn to pull in front-ways.

The bicycle with trailer next to the Audi did a better job, smartly facing outward. But since when are bicycles allowed to occupy a full parking space? Since reverse-angle parking came to town, apparently.

Next to the bike we see a golf cart, also properly positioned — although it looks to be crowding the white line. Golf carts rarely travel in reverse, so the driver probably lacked experience. [Read more…]


Andy Teeling Rallies School Supporters; Supervisors Approve Eyre Baldwin’s Plans for Oyster

Cape Charles Wave

May 18, 2015

The May 12 regular meeting of the Northampton Board of Supervisors once again hosted a standing room only crowd, and once more, it was education that dominated the discussion.

Andy Teeling addressed the board with his vision of a “small, rural, waterfront county” that, at all levels, is a community fully invested in revitalizing our schools and getting personally connected with the students. With this came a resolution calling for a renewed partnership between the Board of Supervisors, the School Board, and the community to use education as driver for future economic development.

“The path to economic recovery, the path is simple,” said Teeling. “We must improve our schools. We each have to ask, ‘what can we do for our schools?’ By helping each student reach their potential . . . we will reap dividends for our economy.”

The core of Teeling’s vision included a county that takes the initiative to promote education to drive the economy, that launches a mentorship program that involves retirees with trade and business backgrounds, that sees a surge of parental involvement, and finally, that brings new business to the Shore that are attracted by the education initiatives.

Supervisor Granville Hogg said, “We have just given back $20,000 that was a grant for industry-specific technical training, for workplace skills for entry level jobs — industrial technology. Though I’m fully in support of the resolution, we have let another opportunity slip through our fingers, only because there were not enough enrollments in the course. That, ladies and gentleman, falls on you all. We need to bring students in, to interest them, to provide them with a job and a way to make a living.”

A resolution that echoed Teeling’s call for a renewed partnership passed unanimously. Although several commentators piled on the Teeling presentation with heartstring, backslapping appeals, others, feeling the full weight of the reality on the ground, and a sense of just how daunting the task really is, also addressed the board. [Read more…]


Chief Pruitt Urges Citizens to ‘Thank a Policeman’

May 18, 2015


Today in the United States, approximately 900,000 law enforcement officers put their lives on the line for the safety  and protection of others. With great success, they serve with valor and distinction.

Federal statistics show that violent crime and property crime rates in the United States are at historic lows, thanks to the dedicated service of the men and women in law enforcement. The national Law Enforcement Memorial is ever-changing as new names are added to the memorial every year due to the selfless sacrifice of the men and women that serve our communities.

In 2014, 127 police officers were killed in the line of duty, leaving 159 children without a parent — and as of today 44 officers have fallen in 2015. These numbers are tragic on their own, not to mention the void that will never be filled.

In what other occupation is one expected to make correct, split-second, serious, and possibly life-and-death decisions while navigating complicated laws and procedures, in addition to having to lay his or her life on the line for total strangers?

The men and women of law enforcement are content in doing a difficult job, one most people in the world could not or would not do, and they do it well. It truly takes an extraordinary person to be a police officer. [Read more…]


Should Town Follow its Own Historic Guidelines?

Former town library, now Civic Center, risks losing both its chimneys. (Wave photos)

Former town library, now Civic Center, risks losing both its chimneys. (Wave photos)


May 18, 2015

Would the historic structure at 500 Tazewell Avenue be just as historic without its two chimneys? That’s a decision to be made by the Historic District Review Board at its Tuesday, May 19, meeting.

The building, once a Methodist Church and more recently the Cape Charles Memorial Library, is now the town’s “Civic Center” hosting public meetings. Town officials have recommended removal of both chimneys due to leaking around the flashing. Despite their best efforts, town maintenance workers have not been able to stop the leaks.

Town Planner Larry DiRe has advised that “the guidelines are rather quiet on the status of chimneys.” But then, curiously, he quotes the guidelines as explicitly stating that “historic building roof types, including elements such as chimneys and light wells, should be retained (Building Element 1, page 34).”

The Historic Review Board ruled in May 2013 that a non-historic house at 621 Jefferson Avenue undergoing remodeling had to install a fake chimney to replace a decrepit flue being removed (CLICK). Following community ridicule the Board reversed itself. [Read more…]

Blue Crabs, Menhaden Showing Resurgence in Bay

Cape Charles Wave Columnist

May 18, 2015

This summer, my daughter Rachel will be spending her summer break from college working at the Cherrystone Campground Bait and Tackle shop. The job duties include monitoring the weather, marking the tides on the chalk board, recommending bait and tackle for the campers, and of course, running down the rules and size limitations when it comes to summer flounder and blue crabs.

For crabs, she is trained to remind the folks to always throw back sooks carrying a sponge, and that jimmys must be 5 inches point to point. You can use tape a measure, or just the railing at the end of the pier, which is 5 inches.

This season, the pier at Cherrystone may have a bit more blue crab action, as results of the winter dredge survey showed modest improvement in the Bay’s blue crab fishery. According to results released by Maryland DNR, “juvenile crabs increased 35 percent from 2014, and more than doubled from the record low in 2013. The 2015 juvenile abundance of 269 million crabs is just above the 26 year average of 261 million. The total abundance of crabs — which include juveniles, and adult males and females – was approximately 411 million.”

Going back to the results of the last few years, including the disastrous drop in populations recorded in 2013, the latest results show just how volatile the blue crab population is, and how vulnerable it can be to factors such as weather patterns (colder winters), changes in coastal currents, and of course fluctuations in levels of natural predators such as rockfish and red drum.

This year, the report estimates that 19% of the crabs died due to the severe winter temperatures. Given this amount of environmental variability, the task of managing this fishery is still a daunting one. According to Tom Miller of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, “Managers acted to ensure the crab stock is no longer depleted as it was last year, and if we maintain exploitation rates close to the target the crab population will continue to increase over the long term.” [Read more…]

The Alternative Table: Willowdale Farm

Catherine and Portia

Catherine Harrison with her milking sheep Portia. (Photos: Karen Gay)

Cape Charles Wave

May 18, 2015

Catherine Harrison, of Willowdale Farm in Painter, is an unexpected cross between a mad scientist and a business executive. Looking at her land, you’d think that there isn’t much farming going on there, but what she is growing blends in with the green pastures full of what we might call weeds: chicory, clover, and grass.

She produces a line of skin care products called Celluvati, which she coined from the word “cell” and the Sanskrit word “uvati,” which means young, beautiful woman. Her prize ingredient is the orange Sea Buckthorn berry, which grows on a distinctive herb with long and narrow dusty green leaves. The berries are known for preventing infections, improving sight, and slowing the aging process. The plant in the photo below is a Sea Buckthorn (but there are no berries on this one).

Sea BuckthornThere is a full line of Celluvati products which Catherine offers on the web at celluvati.com. Products include moisturizers, eye creams, a serum, balm, and aftershave. I can attest to the lovely scent in the balm.

There is more to this farm than sea buckthorn, though. She has planted 250 Chinese chestnut trees and 250 native persimmons onto which she has grafted Japanese persimmons. There are goumi shrubs and elderberries. The goumi produce red berries with silver spots which can be eaten as a fruit or used as a botanical in future skin care products as they contain vitamins, flavonoids, and other bio-active compounds. Elderberry is also full of minerals and vitamins, particularly vitamin B17. The flowers can be used for tea, and the berries can be mashed for juice or used as a tonic for colds and flu. Elderberry is the source of the natural preservative used in the Celluvati products. [Read more…]

Town Looks into Restricting Satellite Dishes

COUNT 'EM -- 10 satellite dishes on the front porch roof of these three row house duplexes consisting of six apartments.

May 18, 2015: COUNT ‘EM — 10 satellite dishes on the front porch roofs of these three duplexes on Strawberry Street. The far end unit has three dishes alone. When a new resident contracts for satellite service the dish company often installs new, upgraded equipment but rarely removes the old dish. The Historic District Review Board will consider recommending tougher controls on satellite dishes at its Tuesday, May 19, meeting. Although Federal regulations generally prohibit municipalities from prohibiting dishes, an exception is made for historic districts such as in Cape Charles. (Wave photo)


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10 Days Later, Illegal Leasing Signs Remain


May 18, 2015

Last week the Wave reported that Town Zoning Administrator Larry DiRe had slapped a red violation notice on the new “Now Leasing” sign in front of the old Cape Charles High School. Dated May 7, the notice ordered the sign to be “brought into compliance immediately and in any case within not more than 10 days.”

That would be by May 17. But 10 days later the only sign that’s been removed is DiRe’s original Public Notice shown at right.

VDOT does not allow signs on public right-of-way, and the “Now Leasing” sign has been moved to the other side of the sidewalk. But the town ordinance limiting the size of the sign to 4 square feet continues to be ignored: the sign is three to four times larger than allowed.

lot 423DiRe missed another sign violation (or maybe he just ran out of room): only one real estate sign is permitted on a single residential lot. But there are now two illegal signs occupying one residential lot — lot 423 at the corner of Plum and Madison. (See county tax map at right and second “Now Leasing” sign below.)

Last week the Wave noted that “DiRe has only been on the job a matter of weeks and apparently was unaware that Old School developer J. David McCormack gets carte blanche (including free water).”

It appears that Assistant Town Manager Bob Panek has now explained that fact to DiRe, and there will be no more red violation notices. [Read more…]

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Group Says Harbor Cats Needed to Control Rodents

New ESSO recycle trailer across from Cape Charles Coffee House will turn aluminum cans into cat food for needy animals (with a little help from their friends).

New ESSO recycle trailer across from Cape Charles Coffee House will turn aluminum cans into cat food for needy animals (with a little help from their friends).

Eastern Shore Spay Organization

May 18, 2015

ESSO would like to thank all of our supporters and contributors who helped make our Cinco de Mayo Fiesta fundraiser a success. Don Valerio’s did an excellent Mexican buffet that was enjoyed by everyone. We offered Sangria and beer as well as appetizers and Mexican brownies for dessert. Sombreros and mustaches were complementary as well as a bottle of margarita mix for each guest, generously contributed by Blue Crab Bay Company.

We expect to net approximately $2,000 from our attendance and silent auction proceeds and we hope to make this an annual fund raising event. ESSO has also been awarded a $500 grant from the Walmart Community Grants Team. We thank Walmart for recognizing our community efforts to help the cats and dogs in our area and to educate everyone about the value of our spay/neuter service. The grant will be put to good use and is very much appreciated.

As many know, cats are necessary in a harbor town to keep the rodent population under control. If this is not realized the rodents can become a serious problem carrying disease and illness. ESSO is working hard to attain low population growth by spay/neutering as many animals as possible. [Read more…]


Shine and Rise Farm Gets PBS Attention for Innovation

Click above, then click again on the next image, and then fast-forward the media bar to 13:00 to watch the 7-minute video of Jay Ford and his Shine and Rise Farm.

Click above, click again, and then fast-forward the media bar to 13:00 to watch the 7-minute video of Jay Ford and his Shine and Rise Farm as featured on the PBS show “Virginia Currents.”

May 18, 2015

Shine and Rise Farm in Painter has been featured on the PBS show Virginia Currents for its innovative approach to agriculture. The program features the sustainable ways that fruits, vegetables, and animals are raised on the food forest farm.

Co-owners Tatum Sumners Ford and Jay Ford started Shine and Rise three years ago and since that time have planted over 10,000 perennial food plants in a ‘Food Forest’ a agricultural system that models the forest edge.

“When we started Shine and Rise we asked ourselves: what would farms look like if we designed them to focus on improving the well-being of our planet and the well-being of the people in our community? the Fords said. “That question keeps us innovating every day, experimenting with new ways to grow nutritionally dense, delicious foods for healthy people and a healthy planet. We are thrilled to share our work with the viewers of PBS so that they might consider planting their own little food forests as well. Just think what would happen if everyone planted a fruit tree — what a beautiful way to change the world.” [Read more…]

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