When the shine is goneFOR THE late-shift worker or just...

Scene and Heard in Anne Arundel

July 04, 1999

When the shine is gone

FOR THE late-shift worker or just those who'd rather avoid the summer sun and heat, there's nothing like an outdoor lighted public tennis court, so my daughter and I recently checked out the facilities at Sawmill Creek Park along Dorsey Road near BWI Airport.

As are many of the county's public courts, the surface is deteriorating with long fissures -- some with grass growing through. (Hey -- it's free, what do you expect? Maintenance?) And you have to contend with the occasional roar of jets arriving and departing at the airport.

But the lights were on over the tennis and basketball courts, and are supposed to shine until 1 a.m., according to the Department of Recreation and Parks.

But curfew time came and went, so we kept on playing and were well along in the third set when, at the stroke of 1: 28, all the lights went out in an instant. "That was sudden," my daughter remarked as we began hunting stray tennis balls. "Next time we ought to bring a flashlight."

The game also ceased on the adjacent basketball court -- but those players were not about to give up for the night. They lined up their vehicles on the parking lot to face the courts and resumed the game -- in the glare of headlights.

-- David Michael Ettlin

Generating excitement

STANDING OUTSIDE the Naval Academy's Alumni Hall on Thursday morning, watching her only child, 17-year-old Gray, check in for "Plebe Summer," Linda Lyons said her son had wanted to attend the institution ever since they visited the campus in Annapolis last summer.

The mother and son from Birmingham, Ala., visited several colleges, but Lyons said Gray was set on the Naval Academy. "He got so excited," she said, "because it was the only school he visited that had a nuclear reactor."

-- Cheryl Tan

Not even a consolation prize

MY ASSIGNMENT was to find the Poteet family of Millersville. The lucky Poteets had just come forward as the winners of the $60 million Powerball jackpot, after keeping their good fortune a secret for three weeks. I needed to interview them for a story that was to run in the next day's paper, but I was not having the luck of the Poteets.

I just missed them at Maryland Lottery headquarters. I just missed them at Celia Poteet's former workplace in Annapolis. I couldn't find their house.

It was late afternoon at this point, and I stopped at a small strip center in Severna Park to call my editor with the bad news. Then I saw it -- a brand-new Dairy Queen! As far as I'm concerned, there is no problem that a large vanilla soft ice cream cone can't solve. I put down the pay phone and headed for the Dairy Queen. Through the door I could see the red-jacketed staff waiting to serve. But my bad-luck streak held: The Dairy Queen was closed; the eager staff was only in training.

I hung around for a few minutes, hoping they'd offer to serve me a training cone. No dice.

-- Jackie Powder

Lawmaking is a rough sport

STATE DEMOCRATIC Del. John R. Leopold from Pasadena, crusading for laws that would allow establishments to hold more than one liquor license in Anne Arundel County, likened his efforts to sweaty aggression. "Economic development is a body contact sport," he said. "All of our neighbors are competing against us."

-- TaNoah Morgan

Pub Date: 7/04/99

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