Angling, Outdoors, and Conservation News Recap
Welcome to the Weekly Creel, a compilation of regional news and announcements for anglers and outdoor enthusiasts of the Chesapeake Bay region. Please email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org to have your organization’s news item or event listing considered for next week’s column. Per usual, here are direct links to the lastest, local fishing reports from Reel Chesapeake, On The Water, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Anglers Sports Center, and FishTalk Magazine. This week’s catch also includes…
Memorial Day Observances This Weekend
Over the next couple days we observe and remember the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives for our country and freedom—who fought abroad and domestically to preserve the values and integrity of our United States democracy. Towns large and small regionwide will hold special celebrations to commemorate Memorial Day weekend.
In Washington, D.C., the National Mall and it’s many memorials will observe the holiday with a number of tribute events. Tomorrow, May 28th, the National Memorial Day Concert, featuring all-star performances, will be held at 8 p.m. on the West Lawn of the United States Capitol. The public is invited on site for the first concert since the Covid-19 pandemic. On Monday, May 29th, there will be wreath laying ceremonies at a number of the memorial sites, and Taps will be played at all of them at 5 p.m. For full details on National Mall events, visit the National Park Service’s information page here.
In Maryland’s state capital, Annapolis, the annual Memorial Day Parade will be held on Monday, May 29th beginning at 10 a.m. The parade route follows Amos Garrett Boulevard to West Street, and down to the City Dock area. For more information on this event and other City of Annapolis events, visit this site here.
And at Veterans Cemeteries statewide, there will be flag planting and wreath laying ceremonies early in the morning—most beginning at 7:30 a.m.—in preparation for visitors all day long. For more information about Maryland’s Cemetary and Memorial program, visit the state’s special page here.
Happy Memorial Day weekend and many blessings!
Virtual Hearing on Striped Bass Emergency Action on 5/31
Earlier this month, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission issued an emergency mandate for all striped bass fisheries of the East Coast, from Florida to Maine, to adopt a 31″ upper slot limit for all recreational angling. The mandate has been adopted by most all states’ natural resources/wildlife departments. Maryland officially adopted the policy on May 16, effectively creating a 19–31″ slot for striped bass in the Chesapeake Bay and it’s tributaries, and a 28–31″ slot for the Atlantic coastal fishery.
On Wednesday, May 31st, 6–8 p.m., the ASMFC will host a live, virtural webinar to discuss the policy with the public and to identify the next steps for management. Click here to register for the webinar. The hearing will be held via GoToWebinar, and you can join the webinar from your computer, tablet or smartphone. Those joining by phone only will be limited to listening to the presentation and will not be able to provide input. To attend the webinar in listen only mode, dial 914.614.3221 and enter access code 424-938-669.
Top Oyster Shell Recycling Businesses Named
Not surprisingly, restaurants really, truly recycle the most oyster shells among all businesses and industries. Oyster Recovery Partnership (ORP) recently announced it’s 2022 top contributing businesses to it’s oyster shell recycling program. ORP’s Shell Recycling Alliance is comprised of Bay-friendly businesses who go above and beyond, dutifully recycling oyster shells to be used in Bay restoration efforts. Shell is an increasingly limited, mission-ciritcal resource for ORP, and the best, most natural material used to rebuild reefs. ORP’s shell recycling crew keeps track of shells recycled from each member to the tenth of a bushel (here’s an example basket), and gives each Top Ten producer a commemorative plaque to mark their contribution. Of course, every shell recycling partner deserves applause for their sustainable practices. See a complete list here. And the Top Ten Shell Recycling Alliance Members of 2022 are:
- Jessie Taylor Seafood (Washington, D.C.): 1,688.35 bushels
- King Street Oyster Bar (Washington, D.C.): 1,286.56 bushels
- Old Ebbitt Grill (Washington, D.C.): 1,234.24 bushels
- Boatyard Bar & Grill (Annapolis, MD): 884.77 bushels
- Lexington Market (Baltimore, MD): 778.13 bushels
- Ryleigh’s Oyster (Hunt Valley, MD): 754.39 bushels
- The Salt Line (Washington, D.C.): 725.15 bushels
- Whiskey & Oyster (Alexandria, VA): 719.99 bushels
- The Walrus Oyster & Ale House (Columbia, MD): 685.94 bushels
- King Street Oyster Bar (Potomac, MD): 595.81 bushels
“Last year, ORP’s Shell Recycling Alliance saw the recovery of over 29,000 bushels of shells, bringing the grand total to over 290,000 bushels recycled since inception in 2010,” said Tommy Price, program manager. “This volume exceeded 2021 and is enough shell to fill roughly 4 Olympic sized swimming pools.” Learn more about ORP at oysterrecovery.org. Image courtesy Oyster Recovery Partnership.
DNR Scoping Boating Changes in Local Waterways
Now’s your opportunity to send comments to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources for the potential boating changes to local waterways that the agency is scoping. Changes are being considered in several rivers in Anne Arundel County—including the ever-controversial Maynadier Creek ski zone—and one each in Cecil, Caroline, and Worcester counties. For the full schedule of changes, what’s proposed, and how you can comment visit DNR’s Changes to Boating Regulations page online.
Antique & Classic Boats in St. Michaels on Father’s Day Weekend
Wooden and fiberglass classics, vintage racers, and other antique boats return to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum June 16–18 for the 35th Antique & Classic Boat Festival and Coastal Arts Fair.
Hosted by the Chesapeake Bay Chapter of the Antique & Classic Boat Society, this Father’s Day weekend tradition is one of the largest classic boat shows in the Mid-Atlantic region and annually brings a sense of nostalgia to the Miles River and CBMM’s waterfront campus. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday. For advance tickets and more information, visit cbmm.org/antiqueandclassic.
In addition to the wide range of vessels on display representing a multitude of makers and eras, the Antique & Classic Boat Festival is accompanied by a juried Coastal Arts Fair showcasing vendors whose products, services, and art represent boats, the water, and coastal life. Photo by George Sass, courtesy CBMM.
Local Outdoor Recreation Gets Federal Fund Boost
Maryland Department of the Natural Resources is now accepting preliminary applications for the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund grant program. Through this program, local governments with qualifying projects are able to request $50,000 to $1 million to create new outdoor recreation spaces, reinvigorate existing parks, and create connections between people and the outdoors.
The department is accepting applications through July 31st. Upon receipt, the Department of Natural Resources will review preliminary applications and invite the highest scoring applicants to create a final application package to be submitted to the National Park Service.
Municipalities and counties that qualify can then apply for up to 50 percent matching fund assistance from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Local matching funds can include money received from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources through the Program Open Space – Local or Community Parks and Playgrounds programs. Details and application information are available on the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Land and Water Conservation Fund webpage. Photograph courtesy Maryland DNR.
New Education Center Coming to James River
Richmond’s riverfront will have a new landmark building that will introduce thousands of students to the James River every year. The James River Association recently announced it has broken ground on the James A. Buzzard River Education Center.
The James A. Buzzard River Education Center to be located on Dock Street will serve as a new hub for environmental education, connecting students and the region with the river and advancing the James River Association (JRA)’s vision of a fully healthy river supporting thriving communities. The new river center will expand JRA’s education program and help reach Virginia’s goal of giving every student three meaningful watershed experiences before they graduate.
“Our goal is to make sure that every child growing up in what Outside magazine named ‘The Best Rivertown Ever’ is introduced to the James River and is able to enjoy a lifetime of the benefits it provides,” said Bill Street, President and CEO of JRA. “Breaking ground on this project is the culmination of more than six years of searching for a site, planning and design. We are thrilled to finally have this project becoming a reality.”
The grand opening of the James A. Buzzard River Education is slated for the summer of 2024. To learn more about the James A. Buzzard River Education Center and the James Changer Campaign, visit jameschanger.org.
Annapolis Education Center Earns Accolade
Annapolis Maritime Museum’s Education Center was recognized as an official Maryland Certified Green Center at the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE)’s Annual Youth Summit on Thursday, May 18th. The Maryland Green Center Award is a way to recognize and honor a facility’s efforts in the implementation of environmental education, best management practices, and community engagement. Learn more about the education center and it’s programs at amaritime.org/education.
And that’s a wrap for this week’s Creel. If you have news to share, please send an email to email@example.com.