By MADDY VITALEDowntown Ocean City, decorated with wreaths adorned with bright red bows, lamp posts wrapped with garland and old-fashioned horse and carriage rides, adds to the allure of visiting the resort during the holidays.And there is something else – Ocean City has a direct line to Santa Claus at the North Pole. Santa’s Mailbox is at Ninth Street and Asbury Avenue just outside of Mark Soifer Park.The bright white mailbox with red and green trim and the words “Santa’s Mail” painted on it holds children’s letters and wish lists for Santa.Merchants began the Santa’s Mailbox tradition decades ago and Santa’s helpers — the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce — is in charge of collecting the letters.And because of that, Chamber members get to read some special requests from the children each year, explained Michele Gillian, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce.This year, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, when health and safety are of utmost concern, events have been canceled and schools are hybrid or all-remote, above all else, the children want a return to normalcy, Gillian said.“Children have asked for bikes, video games, Legos, and other presents,” she said, adding that those requests are similar to those of previous years. “But the biggest request of all is good health and a return to our regular activities.”Like other holiday favorites, Santa’s Mailbox is all about tradition and continuing the holiday spirit, even in a time that has been challenging for so many, Gillian noted.Free horse and carriage rides are part of the holiday celebration in downtown Ocean City.The old-fashioned letter writing offers nostalgia for some and serves as a reminder that tradition is very important in the family-friendly resort, Gillian added.“The tradition of Santa’s Mailbox lives on in Ocean City,” she said. “Children of all ages are welcome to mail their Santa letters.”Gillian assured that each letter is collected and handed over to Saint Nick.“Santa’s elves are hard at work collecting them so Santa can respond,” she pointed out. “This tradition continues the magical memories for all of us. Ocean City welcomes traditions like Santa’s mailbox for generation after generation. There really is a Santa Claus that visits Ocean City often.”For more information about Ocean City and the Chamber of Commerce, visit www.oceancityvacation.com. Santa’s Mailbox stands at the corner of Ninth Street and Asbury Avenue close to City Hall.
By Brad HaireUniversity of GeorgiaGeorgia’s dry again. But that doesn’t mean your landscape has to suffer if water restrictions are mandated this summer. You just need to know your home irrigation system and how to water wisely.It doesn’t matter if you use a sprinkler attached to a hose or a permanent system. The first thing you need to know is how much water you are applying and how fast, said Kerry Harrison, an irrigation specialist with the University of Georgia Extension Service.”Not knowing your water application rate is like driving a car with no speedometer,” he said.Gauge systemDifferent systems apply water at different rates, he said. Hose-sprinkler systems vary the most. Space three rain gauges within the watering area of your system. Look at your watch. After an hour has passed, check your gauges to see how much water your system puts out in that time.Most lawns grow best when they get one inch of water a week, either from rain, irrigation or combination of the two. And they prefer long soakings. In dry weather, water only once or twice a week to get that one inch of water. This promotes deeper roots. Deep roots mean better looking, healthier lawns.Light, frequent watering can actually lead to diseases and hurt your lawn, he said.The grass at the very end of a sprinkler’s trajectory may not get as much water as the grass closer to the sprinkler. Permanent systems should be set for overlap in sprinkler patterns to adjust for this. Remember this when you move your hose-sprinkler system. You want your lawn to be uniformly wet.Right timeYou need to water at the right times, too. Or you could just waste time and water. Water in early morning or late at night, Harrison said.”We have research and evidence to show that you can lose as much as half the water if it’s applied during peak daylight hours,” he said.High temperatures and high winds can evaporate water or blow it off target, too, he said. Most watering restrictions allow watering at the right times. Also, watering during the day increases the time grass is wet. This can lead to disease problems. Watering at night won’t hurt grass that’s already wet from dew. The turf gets the water it wants and is drier during the day.There are no special watering restrictions now in Georgia. The state is in a mild drought, though, said state climatologist David Stooksbury, a professor of engineering with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.An unusually dry period from October 2003 through March 2004 has led to dry soils and low stream flows across the state.
Brookville, In. — Renderings of the future Brookville Aquatic Center have been presented. Repairs to the existing aging facility have been determined not to be feasible.The proposed design will feature water slides, a large shallow area, updated bathhouse & concessions and other amenities. The cost of the facility is expected to be around $2.4 million.The Brookville Town Council has given the project a vote of confidence.
Hamilton and team-mate Valtteri Bottas topped the first part of qualifying but the presence of Vettel and Verstappen just 0.1secs behind them, despite using one grade harder tyres, suggested it would be difficult to stay there, and so it proved.Hamilton said: “I gave it everything I could. The last lap could have been a couple of tenths quicker but I wouldn’t have been able to match those times [of the leading two]. We are still in for the win and I am hoping I get to have at least a battle with one of them.”Verstappen was under investigation by the race stewards for potentially impeding Bottas’ first lap in the final session in the stadium section, but after studying the incident, the stewards ruled Verstappen had not impeded Bottas.Verstappen said: “Which incident? I was on the inside and he was doing his line and so there is no incident.”Vettel claimed his 50th career pole and afterwards said: “We have to maximise every session. Today is really important and tomorrow [Sunday] we [will] see. It is not as much in my control as I would like it to be. We go all out and attack.“We deserve a good result. Ferrari deserves a good result. So we see what we can do tomorrow.”PREMIERSHIP RESULTS & FIXTURESMan United 1 – 0 TottenhamArsenal 2 – 1 SwanseaCrystal Palace 2 – 2 West HamLiverpool 3 – 0 HuddersfieldWatford 0 – 1 StokeWest Brom 2 – 3 Man CityBournemouth 0 – 1 ChelseaBrighton vs Southampton 2:30pmLeicester vs Everton 5pmShare this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel stole pole position for the Mexican Grand Prix from Red Bull’s Max Verstappen as Lewis Hamilton lines up third. Verstappen was quickest after the first runs of the last part of qualifying by a quarter of a second, but a superb effort by Vettel put him on top. He pipped the Dutchman by 0.086secs, saying on the radio: “What a lap.”Hamilton, who needs only to finish fifth in today’s race to be sure of the title, was 0.446secs off pole.