A new farmers market is coming to Harrington; other local news

In this newsletter: A new farmers market, local spacesuits, electric rodeo and more.

A new farmers market is coming to Harrington; other local news
A new farmers market opens up just off Route 13 in Harrington on Saturday. 

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The new provisions in the plastic carryout bag ban will become effective on July 1. Delaware retailers, except restaurants, won’t be able to provide customers single-use plastic bags at checkout anymore. Learn more at de.gov/bags.

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Here's a look at news and events from around southern Delaware this week.

Southern Delaware gets another farmers market

An effort is underway to bring a farmers market back to Harrington, and the new enterprise kicks off Saturday, June 11.

Peter and Lynn Robinson, who own Blue Hen Foods next to the Salty Wave Seafood Market just off Route 13, are organizing the market. It will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Saturday through this fall.  

They’ve been working on getting the market set up for months, and have a number of vendors already lined up. It will feature multiple food trucks with offerings including barbecue, ice cream, and Asian and Mexican fare, Peter Robinson said. They’re starting with about eight to 10 vendors and the slots are mostly filled already, he said.

The location shares a parking lot with the Salty Wave, which is participating in the market, Robinson said. The city will block off traffic in a couple of adjacent side streets during the event.  

City officials will be on hand for a ribbon-cutting on Saturday, too.  

Appropriately, the new farmers market is in Councilman Bob Farmer’s district. He said past farmers market efforts in the city ran into issues like parking, and he’s hoping this location will prove to be one that works. “Hopefully it will be a big kickoff,” he said.  

The Robinsons are trying to make the farmers market a place for the community and use it to build people up, Peter Robinson said.

Councilman Darrin Simpson thanked the Robinsons for their efforts starting the market and wished them luck. “I’ll definitely try to be there and support it,” he said.  

The Robinsons also run a thrift shop at the site, and are launching another shop called Blue Hen Foods Sweet Treats. They are looking to add more employees, and Peter Robinson said the farmers market could expand in the future too. They have a commercial kitchen in their facility, which is a piece of Harrington history – Farmer noted it was a former Hi-Grade Dairy building.  

Saturday is also the first day this year for the Greenwood Farmers Market in the town hall parking lot. That market is also fairly new, having started up last summer. It was supposed to launch for the season last month, but a nor’easter came through and ruined plans. It runs 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the second Saturday of the month through October.

More Harrington news: Council happenings

The Harrington Council held its annual reorganization meeting on Monday, although the organization stayed about the same. Micah Parker and Bob Farmer, who were unopposed in this year’s election, were sworn in to their new terms on Council, and the Council again selected Parker to serve as vice mayor.

Vice Mayor Micah Parker, left, and Bob Farmer, center, are sworn in for their new Harrington Council terms on Monday by town attorney Dianna Stuart, right. 

In his annual address, a sort of “state of the city” speech, Mayor Duane E. Bivans sounded a similar note to his interview with the Independent last winter, stressing the need for the city to move forward. He didn’t directly mention the scandal that led to the firing of a previous city manager and the resignation of the previous mayor, but did refer to past divisions.

In a scripture reference, Bivans cited the need to not dwell on former things (Philippians 3:13). “Times are changing, and we have to change with the times,” he added.  

Harrington Mayor Duane E. Bivans gives his annual address Monday in the Price Community Center. Council members Bob Farmer, Jack Stewart, Micah Parker and Darrin Simpson are in the background. 

“This is where Harrington begins to come together,” he said, stressing that Council members are available to talk to voters about their needs. He also pointed to Harrington’s strong financial position, despite uncertain economic times.

An interview with Harrington Mayor Duane Bivans
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Local manufacturer is still involved in the spacesuit business

ILC Dover’s plant in Frederica has a proud history of making spacesuits, including the one worn by Neil Armstrong in 1969 when he first set foot on the moon, giving the world the saying, “We can put a man on the moon, but we can’t (useful accomplishment here).”

Now, the Frederica plant will help make spacesuits for the Boeing CST-100 Starliner, which is a reusable craft made to ferry astronauts into low orbit, like to the International Space Station.

“Our success is measured by those we’ve helped return to Earth safely for over 50 years of space travel and we will continue to provide spacesuits and soft solutions that will keep astronauts safe in the harsh environment of space,” Patty Stoll, president of space systems and engineered solutions at ILC Dover, said in a statement.

The company, which is based in Newark, also recently announced that it has been selected to be part of the team that will produce NASA’s next-generation extravehicular spacesuits, which might end up being used on the next moon mission.

Testing new spacesuits for NASA. No photos of the low-orbit suit were available. Photo courtesy of ILC Dover/Collins Aerospace

Local line workers show off their skills

A team of Delaware Electric Cooperative linemen recently demonstrated their abilities wrangling electricity at the Gaff-N-Go Lineworker Rodeo in Virginia.

Rodeos involving cattle were ways for cowboys to compete and show off their technical prowess, and that’s also what linemen do at these electric rodeos. The cooperative said in a news release that the linemen perform a variety of designated electric line tasks, with performances timed and scored.

Unlike with cowboys, safe work practices are the most important factor in this competition. Which makes sense, given that a steer stepping on your ribs can be deeply unpleasant, but thousands of volts of electricity is more commonly lethal.

Local line workers Phillip Collison, Dave Morgan and Mike Layton won the top honor for co-op linemen, the cooperative said.

“I couldn’t be prouder of our linemen for earning the top co-op honor at the competition,” DEC President and CEO Greg Starheim said in a statement. “... We know our crews are some of the best in the nation.”

Police investigate possible homicide after body found on golf course

The body of a 65-year-old man from Millsboro was found at a Long Neck area golf course Tuesday, and Delaware State Police are conducting a criminal investigation into the death.

Police said troopers were called to the golf course property at around 5:41 p.m. Tuesday, where they found the man's body. They did not identify the man, pending notification of family.

Police did not say when the man died, or if he died at the golf course. They asked anyone with information to contact Detective A. Bluto at 302-741-2859, send a private message to the state police Facebook page, or call Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333.

Free trash disposal in Harrington

You thought we were done with Harrington news, but not just yet.

Harrington residents can get rid of their junk for free on two upcoming spring cleanup days, the city announced. On June 24 and 25, residents can take bulk trash items, including appliances or yard waste, to the Public Works yard on 102 Franklin Street.

Photo ID is required for proof of residency, the city said. A certified professional must remove the freon from appliances and tag them. The city is not accepting tires, paint, or batteries.

Hours are 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Friday, June 24, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 25.

Help finding summer learning resources

If you’re searching for a summer learning opportunity for your kids this summer, the state Department of Education has launched a web page to help you find one.

The page lets people search for programs based on grade level, date, cost, sponsoring organization and transportation options, the department said. Find it here.

Get a pony ride and support small business

The organizers of “A Small Business Christmas” are holding a non-Christmas version of the event called “A Small Business Bash” at Hudson Fields in Milton on Saturday, June 11. There will be more than 100 small businesses, along with live music, a petting zoo with pony rides, face painting, an adult beverage trailer and food vendors, organizers say. The event also promises to provide a veritable smorgasbord of business cards.

Also, the Delaware Independent will have a booth – come on by to say hello, get a free pen and add to your business card collection.

Laurel Public Library is throwing a party

The Laurel Public Library’s community block party is also slated for Saturday, with fun, food, vendors and prizes, the library said. The event includes a children’s shoe giveaway, and entertainment featuring DJ Randy and juggler Cascading Carlos. Register at the Laurel Library table to be entered in prize drawings for paintball, ice skating, a grill, a bike, Shorebirds tickets and more. Bring five nonperishable food items and get an extra drawing entry. The event is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the library.

A chicken in every pot, and a tree in every yard?

OK, just the tree part. State agencies have launched a Tree for Every Delawarean Initiative to promote reforestation, and nonprofits can apply for money for tree planting efforts through July 1, the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control announced. Funding of $5,000 to $20,000 is available.

It’s part of the state’s efforts to fight climate change, since planting trees can help reduce greenhouse gases. Learn more.

Also, residents can help out by going to the project website to report trees they have planted. (All this tree talk may bore readers, but I love trees and this is my newsletter so it gets a spot. Send your tree-related press releases to asharp@delawareindependent.com.)

Other events

Friday, June 10

  • Woodbridge School District graduation at 6 p.m.

Monday, June 13

  • Food bank of Delaware drive-thru mobile pantry at Crossroad Community Church in Georgetown. 10 a.m., first come, first served. Find more info and register.

Tuesday, June 14

  • Southern Delaware Alliance for Racial Justice presents A Celebration of Juneteenth, via Zoom town hall, 7 p.m.  

Saturday, June 18

  • Strawberry and Sangria Festival at Hudson Fields in Milton. Fresh strawberries, strawberry desserts, cocktails, kids activities, artisans, farmers market and more. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Juneteenth celebration, hosted by Cornerstone Community Center and the Bridgeville Library. 3 p.m. at the library. Music, dancing, vendors and food.

Thursday, June 23

  • Genealogy workshop for beginners at Bridgeville Library, 6 p.m. Live and via Zoom.

Friday, June 24

  • Gallery 107’s “Summer Splendor Art Show” opening reception with refreshments, featuring work from Nanticoke River Arts Council artists. 5-7 p.m. at Gallery 107 in Seaford.

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