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Happy 4th of July

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Happy 4th of July | Posted in Family Health & Safety

July Fourth Fireworks Displays

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on July Fourth Fireworks Displays | Posted in Spotlight on the Community

The Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office released its list of 2015 public fireworks displays:

July 3

Aberdeen, Ripken Stadium, Harford County, 10 p.m.
Bowie, Six Flags America, Prince George’s County, 9:30 p.m.
Chesapeake Beach, Mears Avenue at Chesapeake Beach, Calvert County, 9 p.m.
Chevy Chase, Chevy Chase Country Club, Montgomery County, 9:30 p.m.
Cockeysville, Oregon Ridge Park, Baltimore County, 8 p.m.
Flintstone, Evitts Resort, Rocky Gap Resort, Allegany County, 9:40 p.m.
Frederick, Harry Grove Stadium, Frederick County, 9:30 p.m.
Hagerstown, Hagerstown Suns ball field, Washington County, 9:30 p.m.
Lanham, Ballfield behind church, Prince George’s County, 9 p.m.
Lutherville, Baltimore Country Club, Baltimore County, 9:30 p.m.
Mt. Airy, Mt. Airy Fireman’s Carnival Grounds, Carroll County, 9:30 p.m.
Mt. Lake Park, Broadford Recreation, Garrett County, 9 p.m.
Pikesville, Suburban Country Club, Baltimore County, 9 p.m.
Pikesville, Woodholme Country Club, Baltimore County
Rock Hall, Rock Hall Harbor, Kent County, 9 p.m.
Rockville, Mattie J.T. Stepanek Park, Montgomery County, 9:15 p.m.
St. Mary’s City, Dock across from college, St. Mary’s County, 9 p.m.
Salisbury, Arthur Perdue Stadium, Wicomico County, 9 p.m.
Silver Spring, 18th fairway at Country Club, Montgomery County, 9:15 p.m.
Solomons, The TIKI Village, Calvert County, 7 p.m.
Stevenson, Harward Lane, Queen Anne’s County, 9:30 p.m.
Waldorf, Regency Furniture Stadium, Charles County, 9:30 p.m.
Walkersville, Walkersville Carnival Grounds, Frederick County, 10 p.m.

July 4

Annapolis, barge in Annapolis Harbor, Anne Arundel County, 9:15 p.m.
Annapolis, Epping Forest, Anne Arundel County, 10 p.m.
Baltimore City, Inner Harbor, 9:30 p.m.
Berlin, Showell Park, Worcester County, 9 p.m.
Bethesda, Congressional Country Club, Montgomery County, 9 p.m.
Bowie, Prince George’s Stadium, Prince George’s County, 6:35 p.m.
Bowie, Six Flags America, Prince George’s County, 9:30 p.m.
Boyds, South Germantown Park, Montgomery County, 9 p.m.
Cambridge, Great Marsh Park, Dorchester County, 9:15 p.m.
Catonsville, Catonsville High School, Baltimore County, 9:15 p.m.
Chestertown, Kent County, 9:20 p.m.
Cockeysville, Oregon Ridge Park, Baltimore County, 8 p.m.
College Park, University of Maryland, Prince George’s County, 9:15 p.m.
Columbia, Columbia Lakefront, Howard County, dusk
Dundalk, North Point Government Center, Baltimore County, 9:15 p.m.
Easton, Field behind Target, Talbot County, 9:40 p.m.
Elkton, J. Evans McKenney Memorial Park, Cecil County, 9 p.m.
Essex, Eastern Yacht Club, Baltimore County
Frederick, Parkway Elementary School, Frederick County, 9:30 p.m.
Gaithersburg, Montgomery County Agricultural Fairgrounds, Montgomery County, 9:30 p.m.
Galena, Colchester Farms, Kent County, 9 p.m.
Gibsons Island, Mt. Bar Point, Anne Arundel County, 9 p.m.
Greenbelt, Buddy Attick Park, Prince George’s County, 9:15 p.m.
Hagerstown, Fairgrounds Park, Washington County, 9:30 p.m.
Hebron, Carnival Grounds, Wicomico County, 9:30 p.m.
Hollywood, Hollywood VFD, St. Mary’s County, 9 p.m.
Kensington, Albert Einstein High School, Montgomery County, 9 p.m.
Laurel, Cherry Lane Office Park, Prince George’s County, 9:30 p.m.
Loch Raven Village, Baltimore County, dusk
McHenry, Wisp at Deep Creek, Garrett County, 9:30 p.m.
Mount Vernon, Charles County, 9:30 p.m.
Ocean City, Dorchester Street, Worcester County, 9:30 p.m.
Ocean City, North Side Park, Worcester County, 9:30 p.m.
Ocean City, West 49th Street, Worcester County, 9:30 p.m.
Overlea, Fullerton Park, Baltimore County
Salisbury, Wicomico Youth & Civic Center and Wicomico County Stadium, 9:15 p.m.
Sharpsburg, Antietam National Battlefield, Washington County, 9:30 p.m.
Solomons, The TIKI Village, Calvert County, 7 p.m.
St. Michaels, Talbot County, 9 p.m.
Takoma, Lee Jordan Field, Montgomery County, 9:30 p.m.
Towson, Loch Raven Academy, Baltimore County
Waldorf, Regency Furniture Stadium, Charles County, 9:30 p.m.
Williamsport, Byren Memorial Park, Washington County, 9 p.m.

July 5

Bowie, Six Flags America, Prince George’s County, 9:30 p.m.
Havre de Grace, Tydings Park, Harford County, 9:30 p.m.
Ocean City, North Division and First Street, Worcester County, 8:30 p.m.

Source: wbaltv.com

Give Cycling a Try

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Give Cycling a Try | Posted in Family Health & Safety


My parents told me I should give it a try.

At the age of four, I was introduced to the bike. Not for competition, just for fun. I didn’t think about it back then, but the bike was my first form of self-powered transportation — a way to get away from parents, siblings or neighborhood. I liked being out on my own. Little by little I started to explore further, and I could go as far as my legs and my bravery would take me.

Six years later, I was introduced to bike racing. It really reminded me of the times I put two feet on the pedals and rode my single-speed department store bike for hours. Seeing parts of my city I could only get to on a bicycle, but this time, I was doing it much faster.

I was beginning to figure out that cycling lets you transcend your life. No matter where you come from, what ethnicity or color you are, what kind of financial security you have or don’t have, cycling lets you transcend your life.

If I’d never given it a try, I wouldn’t have a degree from Indiana University or hold seven national cycling championship titles. I wouldn’t be able to give back by helping children in underserved communities get introduced to cycling through the Bahati Foundation. But even if cycling hadn’t become my career, it would have helped me transcend, because being active daily helps you live longer. I gave cycling a try, and now I tell everyone to do the same thing.

Just give it a try because it’s a healthy alternative to running and other high impact sports. Give it a try because it’s great for your core, back, legs, heart, and lungs. Give it a try because it’s a great way to see nature and a natural way to get into a healthy lifestyle.

Most of all, I tell people to give cycling a try because of this beautiful fact at the heart of it: Only you decide how far and fast you can go.

Going Camping?

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Going Camping? | Posted in Live Well, Work Well

Here’s the Rundown of What You Need to Know

As the temperatures rise and the days become longer, many Americans will head out on camping adventures. Whether you’re a seasoned camping pro or new to the activity, it’s always a good idea to review camping safety tips.

Don’t Forget to Pack the Essentials

Before setting out, it is important that you remember to pack things like fresh water, food, a first-aid kit, matches, insect repellent, extra clothing and a waterproof tent.

Think Twice Before Pitching Your Tent

It’s important to carefully consider where you’re setting up camp. Avoid low-lying areas that could flood during a heavy rain. Also, in windy conditions, avoid setting up your tent under a tree, as possible falling limbs could present a danger.

Campfire Safety

If you’re not careful, a campfire can quickly become dangerous. Keep the following tips in mind to stay safe:

  • If possible, surround the fire pit with rocks, and keep a bucket of water nearby.
  • Do not build the fire near the tent(s) or anything else flammable.
  • Never leave a fire unattended, and ensure it is completely out before going to bed.
  • Collect firewood from the ground only, never cut into living trees.

Prioritize Safety Over Fun

To keep the experience fun and safe there are some basic precautions that every camper should take. What’s discussed here is just the beginning of camping safety. For more information on how you can remain safe on your trip, click here

View more Live Well, Work Well tips here.

Avoiding Heat Illnesses This Summer

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Avoiding Heat Illnesses This Summer | Posted in inSIGHTS

Extreme summer temperatures are not only uncomfortable, they are also dangerous for your health. This is particularly true for older adults and children, who are more susceptible to illness.

Here are some tips for staying safe when you’re out in the heat:

  1. Wear loose, light-colored clothing so your skin gets air exposure.
  2. Shield your head and face from direct sunlight by wearing a hat and sunglasses.
  3. Avoid spending time outdoors during the middle of the day, when temperatures are highest and the sun is directly overhead.
  4. Take regular breaks in a shaded area if you’re involved in a strenuous activity.
  5. Drink water frequently, even if you aren’t thirsty. Experts recommend drinking at least 8 ounces every 20 to 30 minutes to stay hydrated. Stick to water, fruit juice and sport drinks while avoiding caffeinated or alcoholic beverages, which can dehydrate you.
  6. Monitor children and seniors carefully, since they can get dehydrated more easily.
  7. Call 911 if someone exhibits symptoms of heat stroke, such as flushed skin, rapid breathing, a throbbing headache or confusion.
View more InSights here.

Liabilities of Renting Your Home

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Liabilities of Renting Your Home | Posted in Personal Tips, Trips & Traps

Protecting Your Personal Property

You may be considering renting out your home for extra income while you’re away for an extended period of time. Though this seems like an ideal solution for families with extra room to spare, it can pose liabilities. Take the following considerations to heart in order to protect your home.

  • Ask for references from potential renters, especially those that will stay for a while.
  • Draw up a rental agreement that defines the terms of the rental, including restrictions, liabilities and occupancy guidelines.
  • Request a security deposit that is to be refunded if there is no damage to your home.
  • Advise Hodge, Hart & Schleifer that you plan to rent out your home and ask about how this may affect your current coverage.
  • Consider hiring a property manager to look out for your home if you are renting for a long period of time.
  • Set aside a secure place in your home to store personal items, such as clothing and valuables.
  • Take pictures of all areas of your home before the rental takes place in case damage occurs while you are away.
  • Have your mail forwarded or held until you return.
  • Provide your contact information to both the renters and your neighbors in case of an emergency.

Safety First

Checking the references of potential renters is vital when determining if you will open your home to strangers. If you uncover any red flags while checking references, do not agree to rent your home, even if you are afraid of hurting someone’s feelings. Your first priority should be to protect yourself and your property.

Double Up on Fruits and Veggies

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Double Up on Fruits and Veggies | Posted in Personal Tips, Trips & Traps


Nine out of 10 Americans are trying (emphasis on trying, not doing) to munch more slimming, health-promoting, nutrient-packed produce. But a study reveals we’re actually backsliding, with fruit and vegetable consumption down seven percent compared to five years ago! That’s a diet disaster that could widen your waistline and raise your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, impotence, wrinkles and some cancers.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends most adults get 1½ to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of veggies daily (we recommend 2 to 3 daily servings of fruit and 6 to 7 of veggies). But according to a CDC survey of 373,580 people, 76 percent of Americans skimp on fruit and a whopping 87 percent miss that low vegetable mark. Most got just one serving of fruit and about 1½ servings of veggies a day.

Fortunately, it’s easier than ever to close the produce gap — doubling your daily intake deliciously without emptying your wallet or spending time hunched over a cutting board. Our six super-simple solutions:

Buy your chips in the produce aisle. Whether you’re stocking up for March Madness, hosting a Downton Abbey viewing party or just love the crunch of a crisp chip with a soup or sandwich, go for pre-sliced carrots, zucchini and fresh peppers instead of a bag of potato chips, corn chips or commercial “veggie” chips. A handful of pre-sliced veggies equals one serving, with less calories, fat and sodium, and way more fiber, vitamins, minerals and health-protecting phytochemicals.

Stock up on frozen produce. Plain, frozen vegetables (without added salt or sauces) and fruit (without added sugars or syrups) in your freezer can turn the busiest weeknight dinner into a produce feast. Steam or microwave the frozen veggies. Frozen raspberries and mango chunks are delicious together in a cool, refreshing fruit salad. You can also toss frozen berries over green salad or whirl in your food processor with a splash of nonfat milk or dairy alternative for a super-healthy, fruity “ice cream.”

Keep produce in the pantry.Keeping canned produce on hand could help you eat 30 percent more fruit and 21 percent more vegetables, according to a University of California Davis study. Look for brands packed in cans free of BPA, a chemical found in food can linings that may increase risk for obesity, heart disease and reproductive problems. Check the website of our friends at the Environmental Working Group (www.ewg.org) to find out what brands are BPA-free.

Double the veggies when you eat out. Even though Americans spend 42 percent of their food budgets on meals outside the home, most get just 10 percent of vegetables and 2 percent of fruit at restaurants. Easy fixes: Ask for twice as much lettuce and tomato on your next deli sandwich, order a veggie instead of fries and start your meal with a salad (ask for vinegar and olive oil on the side) instead of soup or the breadbasket. In fact, if you frequent a restaurant more than once a month, ask for cut up veggies instead of bread — most will accommodate you and serve you that on future visits. (Tip well if that happens.) At breakfast, ask for sliced tomatoes instead of hash browns.

Tote munchable produce. Did you know that 82 percent of the vegetables and 90 percent of the fruit you eat come from your fridge? Up that percentage by tossing baby carrots and an apple or orange into a zipper lock bag every morning along with a paper napkin; carry in your purse, briefcase or backpack for a quick snack. You’ve just added two produce servings a day!

Cook extra tonight. Steam an extra serving or two of garlic-spiced sweet peas (mouth watering yet?), broccoli or grilled asparagus spears. Tomorrow heat and serve over brown rice or red beans or sprinkle with a little olive oil and lemon as a cold side dish. What could be easier?

Healthy-ish Fourth Of July Desserts

July 2nd, 2019 | Comments Off on Healthy-ish Fourth Of July Desserts | Posted in Misc

The Fourth of July is all about fireworks, barbecues, and independence. But as with any holiday, it’s also about the dessert. Celebrate liberty with these guilt-FREE treats, from fruity crisps to keto-friendly cheesecake and delicious no-churn ice creams. Looking for more patriotic sweets? Try these red, white, and blue desserts and 4th of July cupcakes that will totally win your party.