National EMS Week 2018, presented by ACEP in partnership with the National Association of EMTs (NAEMT), will be May 20-26, 2018. Wednesday, May 23, is Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Day.

The 2018 theme EMS STRONG is “Stronger Together.” The theme days for 2018 are: Monday — Education; Tuesday — Safety Tuesday; Wednesday —EMS for Children Day; Thursday — Save-A-Life (CPR and Stop the Bleed); Friday — EMS Recognition Day.

National Emergency Medical Services Week brings together local communities and medical personnel to publicize safety and honor the dedication of those who provide the day-to-day lifesaving services of medicine’s “front line.” This information can be used throughout the year for public education and safety programs. For additional information, contact them at

On Tuesday, April 17, 2018, the Seton Center in Emmitsburg hosted its annual appreciation event at Mountain Gate Family Restaurant in Thurmont. With sixty volunteers and staff in attendance, they celebrated how their volunteers’ “super powers” help to change lives every day.

From April of 2017 through March of 2018, Seton Center volunteers donated over 5,719 hours of service, valued at $97,329.68. While Seton Center approximates the monetary value of their hours, what these volunteers give is priceless. The diversity of their skills and the generosity of their spirits inspire and embolden those blessed to serve beside them.

Seton Center also welcomed its new volunteer partner, Veronica Poole, project director of RSVP (the Retired Seniors Volunteer Program), hosted by the Asian American Center in Frederick. Together, they look forward to a long and fruitful partnership in helping volunteers find service opportunities that are fulfilling and life-changing. If you’re fifty-five or older and are interested in becoming an RSVP member, either through service at Seton Center or another site, contact Veronica at 301-600-7900 or about the perks and opportunities.

Dennis, Marta, Debbie, Tracy, Angela, and Iva (pictured left) and Sisters Barbara, Nancy, and Dorothy, and Robert Riley, all enjoy the food and the company at the Seton Center’s Annual Volunteer Appreciation Event in April.

by Theresa Dardanell

St. Paul’s Church will celebrate its 250th anniversary in 2019. In 1769, a meeting house was erected near the site of the current church. The original congregation was served by circuit-rider preachers from Evangelical Lutheran, as well as German Reformed, German Baptist Brethren, and Methodist ministries. It was replaced by a brick building in 1838, and then completely rebuilt in 1889. Since the 1960s, it has exclusively been the home of the Lutheran Congregation in Utica. To celebrate this very special anniversary, monthly activities and events will be held next year.

Community service is an important part of the ministry of the church. The most popular fundraiser is the annual Utica picnic, which will be held this year on August 18 at the church’s Miller Picnic Woods, located at 7515 Lewistown Road. It has been a tradition for approximately 170 years and is an opportunity not only to raise money, but to promote fellowship. Lucille Putman, picnic supper co-chairperson, said that the event brings together over 800 people from Maryland, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Washington D.C. to enjoy food and fun. The popular menu includes country ham, fried chicken, salads, vegetables and fruit, sandwiches, and cake and ice cream. Along with the great food are games, music, and a pleasant hayride through the Miller Picnic Woods. Proceeds from the event are donated to the Woodsboro and Lewistown Fire Departments and the Thurmont and Glade Valley food banks, and are used to help fund the church’s ministry, as well as the Sunday school and Utica Cemetery Association.  Lewistown Elementary School is also a beneficiary of the church’s generosity. Donations from members provide Thanksgiving dinner and Christmas gifts to families who need assistance. As part of the Thurmont Ministerium, church members contribute financially for local needs and participate in the summer lunch program for children in the community. The Aimee Belle Harper Scholarship program, managed by The Community Foundation of Frederick County and overseen by church members, provides scholarships for eligible students. Groups from the church worked with Habitat for Humanity and helped to build two homes, one in Brunswick and one in Thurmont. St. Paul’s has also participated in the Western Maryland Walk to End Alzheimer’s.

Community outreach is not limited to the local area. Pastor Reverend Albert K. Lane III said that as part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, they are connected to the Christian family in America and beyond. Worldwide support includes financial and prayerful support of missionaries Wendolyn and Eric Trozzo, who are living and working in Malaysia.

The youth of the parish are also very active, supported by the entire congregation. Monthly activities for children and youth include community service, along with events just for fun. Recently, the youth collected “Souper Bowl for Caring” donations for the food banks, and they also prepared and served a meal at the Frederick Soup Kitchen. They regularly visit members and friends of the church who live in nursing homes. Fun activities include ice skating parties, the annual Easter Egg hunt, and a visit to the pumpkin patch in the fall.

Reverend Lane said, “If we understand worship as being central to who we are as a Christian community, you need to have youth involved in your worship life.”

Children who attend the 8:00 a.m. Sunday service hear a special children’s sermon and then participate in Sunday School. On Scouting Sunday in March, scouts were encouraged to wear their uniforms and were recognized during the service.

Adults have the opportunity for friendship and service as members of the Men’s Ministry and the St. Paul’s Lutheran Women’s League. The Men’s Ministry meets monthly for companionship and to plan activities, especially for holidays. The Women’s League distributes gifts for graduates and confirmation students, provides support for the homebound or the sick of the parish, and serves luncheons and receptions for funerals and memorial services.

All of these many church, community, and worldwide services are accomplished by the approximately 150 active members of the church, who all worship together at one of two services on Sundays. There is an 8:00 a.m. relaxed Communion service and a 10:30 a.m. traditional Communion service. Fellowship time with refreshments, in between the services, is held every Sunday from 9:00-9:30 a.m. and is followed by Bible Study/Sunday School for adults. Music is an integral part of both services. The praise team/ensemble leads the congregation in song at the early service, and the adult choir sings at the 10:30 a.m. service. When I visited the church on March 18, the Frederick Youth Flute Choir played before and during the service.

The joy of music is promoted at the church, with concerts held during the year. The Louise S. Ediger Memorial concert series continues the 2018 season with the GreenSpring Young Artists concert at 2:00 p.m. on May 5. On June 14, Argentinean concert organist Gustavo Andres performs at 7:00 p.m. The 11th annual Summer Harp Concert Series will be held in July with performances on July 10, 11, and 13, by the American Youth Harp Ensemble, led by Artistic Director Lynnelle Ediger.

Visitors are always welcome at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church of Utica, located at 10621 Old Frederick Road. Join them for the very family-friendly worship or attend one of the many activities or events that they hold. You won’t be disappointed.

Reverend Albert K. Lane III with members of the St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church Utica.

Photo by Theresa Dardanell

by Anita DiGregory

“May Musings and Motherhood”

I love May in Maryland. The sun has returned (for the most part) and has generally decided to stick around for a while. Bulky boots have been replaced with flip flops, or better yet, bare feet. It stays lighter longer, somehow promising a more potential-filled day. Lovingly gathered and gifted dandelion bouquets; the sounds of children’s laughter at twilight; jars filled with magical, glowing lightning bugs soon to be released…stir memories of long, lazy summers almost forgotten.

I must admit, I look forward to May and the beginning of summer, nearly all year long.  Summer’s promises of family-friendly opportunities, breaks in schedules, chances for much-needed reconnections, and occasions for memory-making moments generally sustain me through the long, cold, over-scheduled days of winter.

However, this May promises to be bittersweet for this momma. Two more will graduate and move on to the next exciting chapter of their lives. As proud as I am of them and as excited as I am for them to start new adventures, this momma’s heart will break just a little. I find myself holding on just a little tighter, a little longer, trying to press those memories tightly in my heart, like flowers pressed in a book.

I stumbled upon this quote from Robert Farror Capon: “To be a Mother is to be the sacrament—the effective symbol—of place. Mothers do not make homes, they are our home: in the simple sense that we begin our days by long sojourn within the body of a woman; in the extended sense that she remains our center of gravity through the years. She is the very diagram of belonging, the where in whose vicinity we are fed and watered. She is geography incarnate.”

I think he is right about this. My mother succeeded in creating this. I guess this is why my siblings and I have been known to travel miles and pack our families—nineteen in all—into a tiny little home by the beach for a week. Through the good times and the bad, the fights and tears, the laughs and hugs, family sustains. In that safe space, I exhale.

I hope I have succeeded in creating this for my brood. Recently, on a really bad, horrible, no good day, my oldest (who is soon expecting his own first little one) told my husband and I not to worry; we had created a home where the children will want to return to visit, a safe place filled with love and memories. In that moment, he brought me much-needed peace and hope. I hope he is right.

So as May unfolds, I wish you the happiest Mother’s Day. I wish you long, beautiful days surrounded with family, filled with love, and lots and lots of wonderful memory-making opportunities.

We never know how many moments we have left…seize this moment and make it count!

Moving Mom Musings


“I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.”

                ~ Abraham Lincoln


“Motherhood: All love begins and ends there.”

~ Robert Browning


“[Motherhood is] the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary—it’s an act of infinite optimism.”

~ Gilda Radner


“My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.”

              ~ George Washington


“I believe the choice to become a mother is the choice to become one of the greatest spiritual teachers there is.”

~ Oprah Winfrey


“When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts. A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child.”

~ Sophia Loren

“Mothers and their children are in a category all their own. There’s no bond so strong in the entire world. No love so instantaneous and forgiving.”

~ Gail Tsukiyama


“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.”

~ Washington Irving


“Having kids—the responsibility of rearing good, kind, ethical, responsible human beings—is the biggest job anyone can embark on.”

~ Maria Shriver



“How can it be a large career to tell other people’s children about the Rule of Three, and a small career to tell one’s own children about the universe? How can it be broad to be the same thing to everyone, and narrow to be everything to someone? No. A woman’s function is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute. I will pity Mrs. Jones for the hugeness of her task; I will never pity her for its smallness.”

~ G. K. Chesterton

Monumental Mommy Movies

Mom’s Night OutThe Blind Side The IncrediblesBrave

The Sound of MusicAkeelah and the BeeFreaky FridaySteel Magnolias • my mom’s personal favorite: Terms of Endearment.

by Valerie Nusbaum

Summer is right around the corner, and that means that, soon, we’ll all be wanting to wear cooler, lighter, skimpier clothes, and (dare I say it?) bathing suits. Years ago, when I was a younger lady, I and all my friends would have spent the entire month of April trying to get our bodies in shape so that our bikinis would cover what needed to be covered and showcase the rest.  That was then.

Nowadays, we’re encouraged not to put emphasis on being thin or toned, and we’re told that we should appreciate all body types.  A healthy body image is a good thing. I’m not knocking that at all. Women are more than a set of measurements, and we should be allowed to be comfortable in our own skins no matter how stretched out or wrinkly those skins might be. (I’m talking about myself here, OK? Don’t go writing any angry emails to The Banner.)

With all that being said, I honestly don’t feel my best, health-wise, when I’m carrying a few extra pounds. My energy level is lower, and I don’t feel comfortable if my jeans are tight. I’m not worried about fitting into a swimsuit, though. It’s been years and years since I even bothered to buy one of those. I would buy one if I spent a lot of time at the beach or the pool, but when I go to Ocean City, it’s not for swimming. I walk along the beach, but I don’t do a lot of sitting out in the sun.

Anyway, I’ve gotten way off topic here, as I’m trying to explain how this conversation got started. I mentioned to Randy that I planned to write about getting in shape for wearing more revealing summer clothing, and that I might suggest some dos and don’ts, but I was worried that I might come off sounding as though I were fat-shaming others. We women need to support each other and not be judgmental.

Randy very seriously looked at me and said, “In this day and age, you have to be so careful what you say about anything. I’m even afraid to use the term “slow cooker.”

At first, I thought he was joking, but he was serious. I asked what he meant, and he said the word “slow” can be a slur and he wouldn’t want anyone to be offended by it. I told him that if he felt concern, he should refer to the slow cooker as a “crock pot.”

“Well, that’s a whole other can of worms because “crock” can be an insult, and “pot” means a lot of other things.”

This conversation was getting sillier by the second, so I asked Randy, “When, exactly, would you ever be talking about a slow cooker in a conversation anyway?”

I had visions of him exchanging recipes with his friends, Wayne, Frank, and Bill.

“I like looking through that Taste of Home magazine your mom saves for us. I like to search for the hidden object each month, and sometimes I come across a recipe that looks good. A lot of them are made in a slow cooker,” was his reply. I asked him if he wanted to try cooking something in one of our crock pots, and he looked like a deer caught in the headlights.

In an effort to change the subject, Randy said, “This whole thing about summer clothes and summer bodies is not the issue at all, and you know it. It’s the shoes that drive you crazy.”

What can I say? He’s correct.  I hate to see warm weather get here because people start wearing sandals and flip flops. While some folks have foot fetishes, I have an aversion to feet, particularly toes.  It runs in my family. We think feet are gross—all feet—even our own.  My cousin, Lou, says that some feet look capable of snatching dinner out of the pond. Randy doesn’t like feet, either. Some feet are like a train wreck: bunions, corns, callouses, and nail fungus, not to mention hammer toes and all those other gnarly toe ailments. No matter how badly I want to look away, I can’t seem to do it. But that’s my problem, not yours. Feet are just plain nasty. I need to change the subject now before I gag.

I’ve thought it over and my advice for getting in shape for summer is this: Take care of yourself and be as healthy as you can be.  Find clothes that make you happy and put them on. Go places and do fun things. Be comfortable and make your own style. You should wear any shoes you like, as long as they’re not dangerous. Just, please, don’t see me out in public and shove your feet in my line of sight. I’m sure they’re very nice, but I don’t need to see them. And give yourself a pedicure once in a while. I’ll be praying that colder weather (and boots) comes soon.

by Christine Maccabee

Land Use

As a land owner, I could not agree with Andy Warhol more (quote above). Personally, I never wanted to turn my 11+ acres into a commercial commodity or a perfect landscape. I simply wanted to grow healthy organic food and allow for wildlife habitat. Back thirty years ago, and even now, more than ever, I feel the same.

There is both poor land management and better management, but I cannot go into every aspect of each perspective in this short space. All I know is that I side on the “better,” if not good management of the gift of the property I own.

After all, it is not really my land. This upper valley in the Catoctins where I live is a part of the earth’s ecosystem, and I am trying my best to honor that by practicing non-chemical warfare, as well as permaculture. So far, we all seem to be doing pretty well—that is, the birds, frogs, toads, bees, wildflowers, and me.

As Andy Warhol said, land is a precious work of art, not to be despoiled, and that includes all the residents here, “all my relations,” as native Americans think of them.

My biggest concern—and the concern of many caring people out there—is the use of the latest in a long line of chemicals developed by corporate giants (not mentioning any names). Back in the 1970s, DDT (a synthetic organic compound used as an insecticide) was banned due to its horrible effect on wildlife, which was brilliantly and sadly depicted by Rachel Carson in her book Silent Spring. Unfortunately, new, just as potent, poisons are out there to devastate wildlife, again. So, what is the real bottom line? For me, it is the health of our planet and its inhabitants, not profits for big corporations. Will we never learn?

According to the latest studies made at the University of Saskatchewan, migrating birds are eating chemical-laden seeds on the large swaths of land, owned by farmers who are using neonicotinoids. According to an article in this spring’s National Wildlife magazine, many U.S. and Canadian farmers plant seeds coated with these toxic chemicals on more than 100 million acres, just as birds are stopping to feed on wild seeds to refuel on their journeys north to breeding grounds. Many of these birds become disoriented and can lose as much as 17 percent of their body weight due to eating from those fields.

Our pollinators, so critical for our ongoing food crops, are also dying in droves. Happily, at least in Maryland, our state, county, and towns are responding to this threat. I am hearing that some large stores are banning neonic pesticides from their shelves, so that gives reason for hope. However, everyone, especially people who wish to have perfect lawns, should be more careful when allowing chemicals to be applied. These are lawns that robins peck on religiously for worms and grubs. Also, bees suck the nectar from clovers and dandelions, two great early native wildflowers. I put both in salads, clipping the petals with scissors. The colors and taste, along with the purple of violet flowers, make a beautifully nutritious salad!

Here is a tidbit for you to chew on: according to Frederick County Master Naturalist Ann Payne, we pour more chemicals on our lawns than farmers apply to their fields. In a new UN report, 40 percent of pollinator species face extinction.

So, what can small land owners do? Much!

First, allow certain areas to go wild, perhaps along your fence line, if you need larger turf areas for children and cookouts.

Second, where-ever possible, allow violets, clovers, and dandelions to grow, controlling the seeds of the dandelion if you do not want it to take over. In doing so, you are taking time to enjoy nature, while you pluck the seed heads off the dandelions, perhaps making it a game for your children. I have been doing this for years, and it is easy.  Of course, I always allow some seeds to go for the next year’s growth. I love dandelions!

Third, plant native plants that are the most beneficial to our birds, bees, butterflies, and a host of other smaller insects, which are all a part of the ecosystem. Get curious and learn to identify wild plants coming up in your gardens, before marking them as useless and pulling them out. Of course, I am not opposed to the multitude of non-native beauties that also offer interest and sometimes nectar, such as red petunias for hummingbirds. Also, plant trees such as Dogwoods, which provide berries for birds.

Last, but not least, do not use chemicals on your lawns, or anywhere, as much as possible.

The adventure of allowing wild plants to grow on your precious property will not only benefit wildlife, but will enhance your own feeling of connection with nature. As smaller land owners, I believe we all have to do our part. It is our moral obligation and, if done in the right spirit, can indeed be an exciting artistic project. Thank you Mr. Warhol for your insight and wisdom. May we all be so wise!

by James Rada, Jr.

Indians Capture a Fairfield Family

Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of columns about Richard Bard’s escape from captivity and the rescue of his wife.

Hannah McBride, a young girl who was at Bard’s Mill, near Fairfield, Pennsylvania, on April 13, 1758, happened to glance out the door of the house. She screamed when she saw men running toward her. She turned to call out a warning to the others in the house, but it was too late.

Nineteen Delaware Indians rushed the house. Richard Bard, the mill owner, grabbed a pistol from its peg on the wall and fired at one of the Indians. The pistol misfired, but the sight of it must have frightened the Indian, and he ran off. Another Indian attacked Bard’s cousin, Thomas Potter, with a knife. The two men struggled over the knife and Potter managed to cut the Indian on the hand.

However, there were just too many Indians. Bard, his wife, and son; Potter; Hannah; Frederick Ferrick, an indentured servant; two field hands; and a young boy were all captured and forced to follow their captors. Potter was killed and scalped, most likely because he had injured one of the Delawares. The Indians also burned the mill down.

About four miles from the mill, the Indians killed Bard’s son without warning. The party moved over South Mountain to the head of Falling Spring. They moved north of Fort Chambers and onto Rocky Spring, and camped for the night near Fort McCord in present-day Franklin County, Pennsylvania. The prisoners had walked forty miles that first day.

As they entered Path Valley on the second day, the Delawares discovered that a group of white men was pursuing them. The Delawares and their prisoners moved to the top of Tuscarora Mountain and threatened to kill the prisoners if the white pursuers reached them.

Bard and Samuel Hunter, one of the field hands, sat down to rest at the top of the mountain “when an Indian without any previous warning sunk a tomahawk into the forehead of Samuel Hunter, who was seated by my father, and by repeated blows put an end to his existence. He was then scalped and the Indians proceeding on their journey encamped that evening some miles on the north of Sideling Hill,” Archibald Bard, one of Bard’s children, wrote years later.

The group hiked on to Blair Gap in Blair County, Pennsylvania, and while crossing Stoney Creek, the wind blew Bard’s hat from the head of the Indian who had taken it for his own. While the Indian went to recover it, Bard crossed the creek. The Indian returned and saw Bard had crossed. He was so angry that he pistol-whipped Bard and nearly disabled him.

“And now reflecting that he could not possibly travel much further, and that if this was the case, he would be immediately put to death, he determined to attempt his escape that night,” Bard wrote after the ordeal.

Another thing pushing his decision was that half of his face had been painted red two days earlier. “This denoted that a council had been held and that an equal number were for putting him to death and for keeping him alive, and that another council was to have taken place to determine the question,” Bard wrote.

After the Indians laid down to rest, one of them dressed in Catherine Bard’s gown to amuse his companions. While the Delawares relaxed, Richard Bard was sent to get water without his captors paying too close attention to him. When Bard got about 100 yards away, the Delawares realized that he was getting away.

They chased after him, but he was gone.

The Indians spent two days looking for him, but Richard Bard had made his getaway.

The Bard Plantation.

by Denise Valentine

My Mother’s Fruit Cobbler

Hello, everyone. It is with a heavy heart that I send this Mother’s Day message. As I look forward to spending some quality time on Mother’s Day with my own children and their families, I am deeply saddened by the recent passing of my Mom.

She taught my sister and I how to prepare good, old-fashioned food. There usually wasn’t anything too fancy except, for dessert sometimes.  Mom was a full-time farmer’s wife, working at the barn right beside my Dad, and a homemaker. When she made it back to the house, there wasn’t time for a lot of prep work for a meal. But no matter what she fixed, it was good. I can say that now, but as a kid, I’m sure there were a few things that I just didn’t like.

One of my all-time favorites was her fruit cobbler. Mom used to can fruit in half-gallon jars. It was a simple, easy, and delicious dessert. She would dump the peaches (about 7-8 cups) into a large baking pan. In a separate bowl, she would mix together 1 cup of sugar and 2 tablespoons of cornstarch, then mix it together with the fruit. The topping was made with Bisquick. Mom made it a little thinner than the package directions, and spooned it over top of the fruit to completely cover it. Bake at 400 degrees for about 25-30 minutes.

The fruit cobbler would bake while we ate dinner, and then we would have a warm dessert—sometimes, topped with ice cream…Yum!

Please refer to any Betty Crocker cookbook to see what adjustments are made to ingredients and flavorings, depending on the type of fruit you use. You will also find the recipe for homemade cobbler topping, but the Bisquick is a delicious and time-effective shortcut.

I hope you enjoy your Mother’s Day.

by Buck Reed

Food Trends – 2018 Update

So, here we find ourselves in May 2018. A full third of the year gone. Let’s take a moment to see how we are doing so far. Food enthusiasts made several predictions as to how we would be cooking today, what new ingredients we would be embracing and how we would be using them. So, let’s take a moment to see how we are doing.

One of the big trends of last year was avocados and, as an ingredient it has carried over into this year as well. I have one online friend who is looking into using them as a healthy fat in his homemade sausage. I do not want to discourage him, and I hope he finds his key to fame and fortune with this or any other ideas he may come up with. Joining the avocado this year was supposed to be the jackfruit as well as an expansion of coconut products. I have yet to see a jackfruit in the stores, but coconut products are trendy and are gluten free and could be used as both sugar and flour in baked goods.

One service that is drifting up is the prepackaged meal kits. Everything for your recipe is delivered to your front door. All the ingredients are premeasured and ready to be mixed and cooked by you. Many are marketed as getting you and your family back together and cooking together. There are more than a few companies offering this service and many want you to enter into a subscription service.

Another popular idea was to get you out of the grocery stores and get you into growing your own food. With the promise of fresher and more nutritious food at a better price, people are going out of their way to make growing their own food a reality. Be prepared for the condescending stories of these wannabe farmers as they tell you how hard they worked to save $10 on those tomatoes on their salad.

Along with the gardening trend is the buy local movement that everyone is embracing. Many restaurants and stores are advertising local produce. It feeds into the idea that local ingredients are fresher and since they didn’t travel by teamster from far away lands, they have a lower impact on the environment.

One product hitting the shelves soon is geared toward the consumer who is not concerned about their health or general wellbeing. Cookie butter is now found in many specialty stores and is bound to bring some joy to your culinary life. If it catches on half as well as I think, it will probably lead to Senate hearings, which seems to be another trend in 2018. Hopefully 2019 will be more palatable.

The secrets to successful weight loss…well, they are not actually secrets, but many people are not aware of these strategies. Many, though, have heard of and fall for the ultra-fast weight-loss claims, such as magic supplements that claim to burn fat, stimulate metabolism, and suppress appetite, or the latest miracle diet craze. So, what has worked for many people?  Here are five good tips:


  1. Get Focused. If current trends continue, half of North Americans will be obese—not just overweight—by 2030, and yet there are around 48,450 diet books on Anyone can lose weight. Severely restricting calories works, but you may not like the way you look or feel, and weight loss alone does not bestow health.

Being overweight can be a symptom of an unhealthy lifestyle, malnutrition, toxicity, excess stress, eating unhealthy food, as well as disconnecting from nature.  Lessening the symptom is like taking a drug to mask the problem without healing the reason for the symptoms. Many health problems can be related to excess weight: hypertension, diabetes, osteoarthritis, asthma, and fatty liver disease, to name a few. Dieting may get the weight off, but you can still be in poor health, have nutritional deficiencies and imbalances, and poor cellular functions. Instead, try focusing on building health. Rather than subtracting calories that “make you fat,” you need to add foods and activities that improve health and well-being. Loss of excess weight and fat will be a positive side effect to changing unhealthy eating habits and increasing physical activity. This is a lifestyle change, not a temporary goal. Your goal should not be to lose weight but to improve your lifestyle.  Cultivate a life-long way of eating and living.


  1. Don’t Count On Just Counting Calories. How many calories should you eat each day? Since a calorie is a measurement of burning, that is difficult to answer. It depends on your age, gender, activity level, hormonal balance, weight-loss goals, and much more. We are told that burning 3,500 calories equals a loss of one pound. However, it is not that simple. If cutting 500 calories a day truly meant losing a pound a week, a dieter weighting 300 pounds would disappear in six years. At some point, weight loss stops, even while continuing the lower calorie intake. In fact, obese people often lose only a small amount of weight on a low-calorie diet. The point is, only lowering calories is not the answer.

It also matters where calories come from. Our bodies distinguish one type of calorie from another.  If you eat nutrient-poor processed food, your body can do little else but quickly “burn” it or store it as fat. On the other hand, if you eat nutrient-dense whole food, your body will use this nutrition to keep the body healthy and to help maintain muscle. Muscle tissue is continually burning energy.

Therefore, by reducing calories with nutrient-poor processed food, you may lose weight, but your body suffers; you lose muscle tissue and it is easier to regain the weight.  People who focus on nutrient-dense whole food tend to consume fewer calories, and the body knows it is getting the nourishment it needs, so you do not need to eat more. If you are overweight, your body is hungry, if you are obese, your body is starving—not for calories, but for nourishment. Gaining weight can result from eating the wrong kinds of calories and not exercising enough.


  1. Don’t Go On a Diet. Dieting implies a temporary restriction of eating. Once weight is lost, the dieter returns to his/her “normal” way of eating and usually regains the weight. Eating well should be a lifetime goal; long-term changes in diet and exercise have shown to have the best effect on weight reduction and maintenance. Drop the “dieting” and go for “eating better.” Focus on consuming and enjoying real nutritious foods that promote health. Replacing depleted, over-processed, altered foods with nutrient-dense foods provides our bodies with what they need to function properly so that we feel satisfied, satiated, and well.
  2. Eat for Quality. Your body needs nourishment from real, naturally nutrient-rich foods, not over-processed foods, low or devoid of nutrients. Overweight usually means under-nutrition, a body craving vital nutrients. Eating more raw foods (vegetables, fruits, raw milk products, nuts, and seeds) can result in dramatic improvements in weight and health.


  1. Don’t Eat Low Quality. If you eat a lot of processed food, fast food, takeout, or supermarket-prepped meals, then you do not know exactly what you are consuming. The food industry adds many types of fillers to make the food go further. Typical processed food diets result in an “alarming prevalence of obesity.” Removing nutrients and fiber, adding refined sugars or toxic fats, and other prevalent aspects of food processing, “have created an environment in which our foods are essentially addictive,” says Dr. Robert Lustig, University of California.

If you are interested in switching to a whole-food diet and gaining back your health, then contact Dr. Lo at his Frederick office at 240-651-1650. If you are interested in seeing what the practice is about then join Dr. Lo for a free nutrition seminar, offered on alternating Tuesdays and Thursdays. Call the office to make an appointment. (Article source: Nutrition News and Views, Judith A. DeCava, CNC,LNC.)

The Emmitsburg Business and Professional Association (EBPA) is reaching out to residents and businesses to solicit their opinions on future community and economic development initiatives in Emmitsburg and the surrounding area. To better understand your needs, they have developed a brief survey that has been linked to the Town of Emmitsburg website and Facebook. They are asking businesses and residents to complete the survey and submit it to them by May 30, 2018.

To complete and submit the survey online, please go to To download and print the survey, go to, click “Our Community,” and then click “EBPA Survey.”

Please drop off your completed survey in the EBPA survey deposit box at the Emmitsburg Jubilee Food Store customer service desk, the Emmitsburg Public Library, or the Emmitsburg Post Office.

Thank you for your participation!

It was a long time coming, but a new Mr. Catoctin was chosen on April 5, 2018. Scott Little earned the title after displaying talent, creativity, and an ability to fundraise for Catoctin High School Safe & Sane at the 6th Annual Mr. Catoctin Pageant.

“The experience was pretty awesome, and, obviously, I’m pretty excited about being chosen,” expressed Little.

The event had originally been scheduled for March 2, but it had to be postponed twice: once for wind and once for snow. However, the delay didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the crowd and the competitors in the Catoctin High School Auditorium on a Thursday evening.

Besides Little, Corbin Deviney, Cameron Hewitt, Matthew Imes, James Kempisty, Sean Miller, Noah Olson, and Noah Wivell had been selected by teachers to compete. Mr. Catoctin is not a beauty pageant, bodybuilding competition, or talent show. It is a fun event to raise money for Catoctin Safe & Sane, on organization that works to help seniors have a safe and fun prom, without drugs and drinking.

The eight competitors were scored on Spirit Week votes (10 percent), program ads and ticket sales (10 percent), donations and auction items (10 percent), the Mr. Catoctin opening number (5 percent), teacher impressions (10 percent), talent (25 percent), formal wear (10 percent), and onstage Q&A (20 percent). Little said that he knew that he had raised the most money among the competitors for program ads and sponsors, but he felt that he did his best with the talent competition, which was a song and dance number that included six back-up dancers.

“I was originally supposed to have twelve back-up dancers,” Little said. “But with the delays, people had to drop out because of sports and other things; I had to make things bigger and better.”

Little explained that he had started planning his talent number very early because of the choreography he wanted.

The weather delays made him both more anxious and more excited about performing, but Little didn’t disappoint as he made his spotlighted entrance from the back of the auditorium to join his dancers on the stage.

Scott Little (chosen as Mr. Catoctin) and Haleigh Bowling, performing at the Mr. Catoctin Pageant in April.

Photo by James Rada, Jr.

On Monday, March 19, 2018, Thurmont Lions, principals, teachers, family, and friends gathered at the Thurmont Regional Library for the annual Teacher of the Year reception. The Teacher of the Year reception is held to honor all nominees from all eight schools. We had nominations from: Catoctin High School (one nomination)—Teacher of the Year: Angelique Merkson; Thurmont Middle School (three nominations)—Teacher of the Year: Lisa Vaeth; Mother Seton School (one nomination)—Teacher of the Year: Sheila Dorsey; Sabillasville Elementary School (two nominations)—Teacher of the Year: Pam Ellenberg; Lewistown Elementary School (two nominations)—Teacher of the Year: Heather Burgess; Emmitsburg Elementary School (six nominations)— Teacher of the Year: Melissa Kearchner; Thurmont Elementary School (one nomination)—Teacher of the Year: Jennifer Young; Thurmont Primary School (two nominations)—Teacher of the Year: Kristianne Dove.

On Education Night in May, we will honor the eight Teachers of the year and name the Thurmont Lions Club Teacher of the Year. We will also be honoring Bonnie Hopkins, a long-time Emmitsburg teacher, who is retiring at the end of the school year.

A special thank you to Stephanie Steinly, Nancy Echard, and Joyce Anthony, who assisted with the judging and the program; to Paul Cannada and Wendy Candela, who were the official event photographers; and to Dianne McLean, cheerleader extraordinaire.


Pictured from left are: (front row) Kristianna Dove, Lisa Vaeth, Heather Burgess; (back row) Angelique Merkson, Jennifer Young, Pam Ellenberg, Melissa Kearchner, and Sheila Dorsey.

Theresa Dardanell

Sabillasville Elementary School (SES) students created boats to help the gingerbread man cross the river without being eaten by the fox, and assembled parachutes to help Jack float down from the beanstalk and escape from the giant. It was all part of an activity that combined literacy and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) on March 29, 2018.

Jeanne Read and Shelba Bollinger from the Thurmont Regional Library read the fairy tales to the children and then encouraged them to create the boats and parachutes, using a variety of everyday objects. The students could choose items like foam boards, straws, corks, and construction paper for the boats, along with plastic bags, tissue paper, coffee filters, and string for the parachutes.

Second grade student Sophie Wagaman was one of the first to get her boat to float across the river (a tub of water). In another classroom, a tall construction paper beanstalk was the scene of the parachute trials. A toy “Jack” was attached to each parachute. Parents were on hand to reach up high and release the parachutes while the students watched Jack float down safely.

Many of the SES staff members were on hand to serve pizza before the activities began. They were also available in the media center and the computer lab to help with the other literacy activities. In the computer lab, parents had the opportunity to use some of the online literacy resources with their children.  After completing an activity in the media center, every student had the opportunity to choose a book to keep. The books were donated by a very generous community member.

Joey and ILO Blentlinger and Robbie Koontz create parachutes to help “Jack” escape from the giant.