Out & About Magazine - October 2020

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Sports Pages: Class is in Session

CCAC Exhibit Celebrates Negro League Baseball

Life and Basketball with Larry Morris

GAME TIME! COVID-19 forces an audible, so sports world gets creative


䄀刀䔀 夀伀唀 刀䔀䄀䐀夀  䘀伀刀 匀伀䴀䔀  䘀伀伀吀䈀䄀䰀䰀㼀 䴀愀欀攀 猀甀爀攀 礀漀甀爀 最愀洀攀  瀀氀愀渀 椀渀挀氀甀搀攀猀 礀漀甀爀 昀愀瘀漀爀椀琀攀 琀愀椀氀最愀琀攀 昀漀漀搀猀⸀ 䰀攀琀 甀猀 挀愀琀攀爀  礀漀甀爀 最愀洀攀ⴀ搀愀礀 攀瘀攀渀琀 漀爀  猀琀漀瀀 戀礀 琀漀 瀀椀挀欀 甀瀀 礀漀甀爀 昀愀瘀漀爀椀琀攀 猀渀愀挀欀猀⸀ 匀栀漀瀀刀椀琀攀⸀挀漀洀⼀䌀愀琀攀爀椀渀最 匀栀漀瀀刀椀


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Taking Taking action action on on our our commitment commitment to to Delaware Delaware We know we must do more to address the very real consequences of systemic racism that exist in society We know we must do more to address the very real consequences of systemic racism that exist in society today. The impact is clear for communities across the country, including where our teammates live and serve today. The impact is clear for communities across the country, including where our teammates live and serve our clients. our clients. To drive progress, Bank of America has committed to invest $1 billion over four years to advance racial To drive progress, Bank of America has committed to invest $1 billion over four years to advance racial equality and economic opportunity, building on work we’ve had underway for many years. equality and economic opportunity, building on work we’ve had underway for many years. We’re partnering with community and corporate leaders to create sustainable change. Our actions will help We’re partnering with community and corporate leaders to create sustainable change. Our actions will help address critical issues and long-term gaps that have only been widened by the coronavirus and amplified by address critical issues and long-term gaps that have only been widened by the coronavirus and amplified by the most recent acts of injustice. Our efforts include: the most recent acts of injustice. Our efforts include: • • • • • • • •

connecting workers to new skills and enhanced job readiness connecting workers to new skills and enhanced job readiness increasing medical response capacity and access to health care and nutritious food increasing medical response capacity and access to health care and nutritious food powering small businesses owned by people of color through access to capital powering small businesses owned by people of color through access to capital helping people find a place to call home helping people find a place to call home

My teammates and I here in Delaware are committed to doing more, and doing more now. My teammates and I here in Delaware are committed to doing more, and doing more now.

Chip Rossi Chip RossiMarket President Delaware Delaware Market President

Working together Working together Here in Delaware, we are proud to already partner Here in Delaware, we aretoproud to already partner with local organizations advance racial equality with local organizations to advance racial equality and economic opportunity, including: and economic opportunity, including: Westside Family Healthcare Westside Family Healthcare True Access Capital True Access Capital Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County Year Up Year Up

To learn more, please visit bankofamerica.com/community. To learn more, please visit bankofamerica.com/community. 4 OCTOBER 2020 | OUTANDABOUTNOW.COM

Bank of America, N.A. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender Bank of America, N.A. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender

© 2020 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved. © 2020 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved.


11 26

Out & About Magazine Vol. 33 | No. 8

Published each month by TSN Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Mailing & business address: 307 A Street, Wilmington, DE 19801

Publisher Gerald duPhily • jduphily@tsnpub.com


Director of Publications Jim Hunter Miller • jmiller@tsnpub.com Contributing Editor Bob Yearick • ryearick@comcast.net Creative Director & Production Manager Matthew Loeb, Catalyst Visuals, LLC Digital Services Director Michael O’Brian Contributing Designers Allanna Peck, Catalyst Visuals, LLC, Contributing Writers Danielle Bouchat-Friedman Adriana Camacho-Church, Cindy Cavett, David Ferguson, Mark Fields, Pam George, Lauren Golt, Jordan Howell, Michelle Kramer-Fitzgerald, Dillon McLaughlin, Ken Mammarella, John Murray, Larry Nagengast, Kevin Noonan, Leeann Wallett



7 Learn

36 Xtianstock


9 War on Words 11 City Mural Project

40 Fall Beers Worth Trying

15 Gift of Inspiration: Jermaine LaFate 18 From The Publisher


WILMINGTON 42 In The City 44 On The Riverfront

20 Larry Morris 26 Negro League Baseball Salute 30 The Magic of Sports Pages

Cover concept & design: Matthew Loeb

11 Voices Amplified in Art Pop-up murals downtown continue conversation about Black Lives Matter By Ken Mammarella

15 The Gift of Inspiration: Part IV Jermaine LaFate found inspiration in the power of words By Leeann Wallett

20 Playing the Long Game

EAT 31 Is It Safe? 34 Brandywine Valley Restaurant Week

Larry Morris taught Wilmington youth much more than the pick-and-roll By Bob Yearick

26 Centennial Salute The importance of Judy Johnson and Negro League Baseball

Contributing Photographers Jim Coarse, Justin Heyes and Joe del Tufo/Moonloop Photography, Butch Comegys, Lindsay duPhily, Matthew Loeb, Matt Urban Special Projects Bev Zimmermann



By Larry Lester

31 Is It Safe?


Restaurants are meeting the standards for inside dining. Now, it’s convincing you. By Pam George

Printed on recycled paper.

Editorial & advertising info: 302.655.6483 • Fax 302.654.0569 outandaboutnow.com • contact@tsnpub.com OCTOBER 2020 | OUTANDABOUTNOW.COM


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Keep Your Higher Education Plans On Track Through Online Learning You can achieve your academic goals with Wilmington University, the local leader in online learning


f you’ve set a goal to start college, complete your degree, or upgrade your skills in the coming year, online courses are likely on your agenda. If you’d like to make the most of your online learning experience, Wilmington University can help. Here are five reasons why WilmU works for online education. 1. Over a decade of experience. Every day a new student enrolls in online courses for the very first time, but WilmU has been offering remote learning since 2007. More than 15,000 students worldwide currently participate in the University’s award-winning online degree and certificate programs. “WilmU has been doing online learning longer than any school in the region,” says Russ Lichterman, director of educational technology and multimedia in WilmU's College of Online and Experiential Learning. “We’ve been on the cutting edge of online learning since before online learning became a necessity.” 2. Up-to-date technology. Powerful online learning technologies, including the Canvas learning management system, Zoom videoconferencing, and the Kaltura video sharing platform, make it easy to connect with instructors, participate in class discussions, post assignments, and collaborate with classmates. Training videos, tutorials, and one-on-one technical support, available seven days a week, make it reliable. 3. Academic strength. WilmU hosts more than 130 degree and certificate programs 100% online. Each one provides the same practical, career-focused education found in face-to-face courses. And each is taught by real-world-experienced instructors who’ve been trained to meet rigorous online teaching standards. “WilmU’s faculty and staff are experts in delivering high-quality academics, online or off,” says Lichterman.

4. Student support, wherever you’re studying. Online students have comprehensive access to all of WilmU’s support services, including academic advising and course registration, tutoring and library resources, and even extracurricular opportunities to network with other online students and get involved with the University community. A team of online navigators provides additional personalized guidance for the remote learning experience. 5. Affordability. WilmU is the #1 most affordable private, nonprofit university in the region. All students, whether in-state or out-of-state, are charged the same low tuition rates. No matter where you’re connecting from, WilmU offers accessible, accredited higher education at a price that makes sense.

Getting Started Is Quick and Convenient

WilmU’s open admissions policy allows enrollment in most academic programs without the need to submit standardized testing scores. Classes start every eight weeks, and Admissions Specialists are available to answer your questions and guide you through the application process. So why wait? Achieve your educational goals wherever you are, on your schedule, with online learning from Wilmington University. For more information about how WilmU works for you, visit wilmu.edu/OnlineLearning

WilmU works. Find out why

at our Virtual Fall Open House. Wednesday, October 21

Details at wilmu.edu/OpenHouse XX OC TOBER 2020 | OUTANDABOUTNOW.COM




F.Y.I. Things worth knowing




he winner of Out & About Magazine’s Adventure Story Contest, presented by REI and Delaware State Parks, will appear in our November issue. Deadline for entries is Oct. 1. Stay tuned for publication of the winning submission.



rom October 3 to 11, Peace Week Delaware will present its fifth annual series of events to promote statewide non-violence. Dozens of organizations and individuals from all three Delaware counties will be facilitating more than 40 virtual and in-person programs, all of which are free to the public. Virtual events require advance registration to receive a link. Outdoor events require attendees to wear a mask and adhere to social distancing. For a list of programs or to register, visit PeaceWeekDelaware.org



n partnership with DelArt Cinema, the Delaware Art Museum’s drive-in movies will continue through October. The films are scheduled for alternating Thursdays: The Birdcage (Oct. 1), North by Northwest (Oct. 15) and Frankenstein (Oct. 29). Rain dates are the subsequent Friday nights. Start times vary from 8-8:45pm. Advance tickets only ($17 and include popcorn and soft drinks). Visit Delart.org 8 OCTOBER 2020 | OUTANDABOUTNOW.COM

randywine Zoo will present a modified version of its annual Boo at the Zoo tradition Oct. 23-25 from 10am-3pm. Kids can strut the grounds with their costume, visit the animals and receive a trick-or-treat package upon departure. Advance registration required. Non-members are $7, members are free. Visit BrandywineZoo.org/events



ow do you view driving, walking, bicycling and transit on Wilmington’s Concord Pike in 20 years? You can review a draft of the Concord Pike Master Plan and share feedback during a virtual workshop on Oct. 5 from 6:30-8pm. The workshop is being hosted by the Wilmington Area Planning Council, the Delaware Dept. of Transportation and New Castle County Dept. of Land Use. Register at DelawareGreenways.org



or the first time since its inception in 1978, the Hagley Craft Fair will be held completely outdoors due to Covid-19 restrictions. The event, scheduled for Sat., Oct. 17 (rain date Oct. 18), will be located in the scenic woodlands of the museum’s upper property surrounding the Hagley Library and Soda House. Visitors will be able to browse the work of nearly 50 regional artists specializing in jewelry, textiles, wood and pottery. A specialty food market will also be open on site. The fair opens at 9:30 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. Admission is $5, but free for Hagley members and children under 6. Advance ticket reservation is required. Visit Hagley.org


he New Castle County Chamber’s 30th Women’s Leadership Conference will be a two-day virtual event held Nov. 12-13. It will feature numerous educational workshops, keynote speakers, awards presentation, virtual networking and business exhibiting. Three awards will be presented during the conference: Lifetime Achievement, Women’s Leadership Award and Trailblazer Award. For itinerary updates and to register visit Business.ncccc.com/events



he YMCA of Delaware is bringing back select family and youth programs throughout the state, including swim lessons, youth sports clinics, dance, family fun nights and more. In addition, several locations have opened saunas on a limited basis and expanded hours. Extensive safety protocols remain in place. “We are dedicated to providing youth and families with a safe place to stay active and healthy while having fun,” said Deborah Bagatta-Bowles, Chief Executive Officer of the YMCA of Delaware. “Regular exercise and living an active lifestyle are important for reducing stress and building a healthy immune system. With many schools moving to remote learning, children and families are getting less exercise than ever before, and we are excited to offer programs to get them moving.” For an update on the modifications at your area YMCA, visit YMCADE.org


A writer/editor’s slightly snarky and relentless crusade to eliminate grammatical gaffes from our everyday communications

Compiled from the popular column in Out & About Magazine

THE WAR ON WORDS A monthly column in which we attempt, however futilely, to defend the English language against misuse and abuse

By Bob Yearick

Media Watch • A dangler from USA TODAY: “Wanting to prevent the spread of the virus and schools closing, USA TODAY reported that several college administrators have resorted to stricter rules that sometimes call for the suspension of students.” Yo, USA TODAY, simply reporting on college administrators’ efforts will not help stop the spread of the virus. • Gabe Lacques, in USA TODAY, speaking of Carlos Correa of the Houston Astros: “. . . he was the most ardent defender of he and his Astros teammates in the wake of their sign-stealing scandal.” Following the preposition of, himself would’ve been the appropriate pronoun here. • Willie Geist on Sunday Today with Willie Geist: “Chadwick Boseman played everyone from Jackie Robinson to Black Panther.” Exactly who is “everyone from Jackie Robinson to Black Panther”? Media types use this lazy construction all the time. Why not “played such disparate roles as Jackie Robinson, James Brown, and Black Panther”? • Daughter Danielle caught The Wilmington News Journal using a redundancy and the wrong verb in consecutive sentences: “The only noticeable visual addition to the area so far is a large American flag hanging from an office building next to the Chase Center and Frawley Stadium. Another flag laid (lay) on a mat next to the Chase Center’s entrance.” • TNJ also published this sentence: “President Barack Obama reigned in the program.” That’s reined in.

How Long, Oh Lord, How Long? The title of Donald Trump Jr.’s book has a typo (no surprise): Liberal Privilege: Joe Biden and the Democrat’s Defense of the Indefensible. Unless Donnie is referring to a single Democrat, that apostrophe should come at the end of Democrats.

Department of 'HUH'? A reader reports that she heard this in a Morgan & Morgan commercial: “We do one thing and one thing only: workers compensation and personal injury.” Um, fairly sure that’s two things. Another reader says he recently received an email from a person who, after presenting a political argument, then concluded that it was a mute point anyway. The word, which we have pointed out several times, is moot.

Department of Redundancies Dept. Former Ohio State football coach Urban Meyer, about the possibility of playing a winter schedule followed by a regular fall schedule: “The body, in my very strong opinion, is not made to play two seasons within a calendar year. That’s 2,000 repetitive reps.” (“Reps” is coachspeak for repetitions.) Yeah, those repetitions are definitely repetitive. And technically, repetitious would be more accurate. Reader Joe Martz (hereafter to be known as “Upstate Pa. Joe”) asks, “If someone gives 1,000 percent, which I've heard many times, are they 900 percent redundant?” Answer: Yes.

Notes on October A couple of seasonal notes: First, reader Nancy Blance says that both she and her late mother, who was an English teacher, have anguished over the mispronunciation of Halloween. Most people, says Nancy (and we agree), pronounce it “Hollo-ween.” Remember, it’s “all Hallows’ Eve, so it’s pronounced Hallo-ween. Second, let’s remember that football (finally) has kicked off with a kickoff. The former­—two words—is the verb; the latter—one word­—is the noun.

We Beg to Differ We continue our campaign to excise the word different when it is meaningless, in such constructions as this recent item about Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes’ father: “Mahomes Sr. pitched for six different MLB teams.” In cases like this, different becomes a kind of verbal hiccup.

Which/That O&A Contributing Writer Michelle Kramer-Fitzgerald supplies us with a News Journal headline that demonstrates how using which in place of that can cause confusion. The head, “Markell pens protest song after white supremacist rally in 2017 in Virginia, which led to woman’s death,” could be construed to mean that former Gov. Markell’s song led to the woman’s death. Remove the comma after Virginia and make it “that led to the woman’s death,” and the meaning is clear.

Follow me on Twitter: @thewaronwords

Word of the Month

hyponym Pronounced HY-puh-nim, it’s a noun meaning a more specific term in a general class. For example, “purple” is a hyponym

NEED A SPEAKER FOR YOUR ORGANIZATION? Contact me for a fun presentation on grammar: ryearick@comcast.net.

of “color.”

Buy The War on Words book at the Hockessin Book Shelf or by calling Out & About at 655-6483.


Christiana Pub

Dates, times and pricing may vary. Reach out to participants for details. While supplies last. No Purchase Necessary

START James Wyatt works on The Revolution Painting at Spaceboy Clothing.

Voices Amplified in Art Pop-up murals downtown continue conversation about Black Lives Matter By Ken Mammarella Photos by Joe del Tufo


onathan Whitney was asking some tough questions on May 31. That was a day after protests sparked by George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis had ended in rioting and looting in Wilmington. “How can we help?” he asked. “How do we amplify the voices and deal with the damage?” Whitney and Eliza Jarvis, who have years of experience in the arts and community engagement, decided to commission artists to paint over the plywood boards installed to cover damaged windows on downtown buildings. ► OCTOBER 2020




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“It was very guerrilla,” said Joe continued from previous page del Tufo of Moonloop Photography and the murals’ third organizer. He had been following the protests, “feeling kind of helpless, and I needed to do something positive.” So he ventured out for the cleanup, and he connected with the other two. Progress was informal and wide-reaching, he said. “Find a space. Find a person. Get some money.” “It was really hard to see all that destruction … and sadness,” said Jarvis, who lives in Cool Spring, a short walk from downtown. “We just wanted to bring a little positivity and add a way to keep talking in a more productive environment.”

A Bridge, Senseless Losses and a Psalm

“I wanted my piece to be a bridge,” said James Wyatt, who created the first work, at Spaceboy Clothing, 706 N. Market St. “Unfortunately the more things change, the more they stay the same. The imagery is something from before my era but still just as impactful today. The colors however are more vibrant and meant to get the attention of those looking. I wanted them to tie together with the messaging ... and be live. There is still a lot of work to be done, and art and imagery has always played a part in that. Hopefully these works will help continue the conversation.” The next treatment was at Blitzen, a pop-up bar at 220 W. Ninth St., from JaQuanne LeRoy. “The title of my work is Psalm 18:16-17,” he said. “The Scripture reads: He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. "I want people to know that my art is a personal testimony of God’s saving grace. As we mourn the loss of loved ones and fight for justice, we can look to God for peace.” Thanks to Erica Jones, more of these prosaic pieces of plywood became thought-provoking art, also at Blitzen. “The portrait and names are all of black women and girls that we have lost senselessly that have not gotten proper due,” she said. “The plight of the black woman has been ignored and unheard for far too long. I also wanted people to bear witness to our greatness, especially when we are able to be exactly who we are without burden.”


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JaQuanne LeRoy works on his plywood mural at Blitzen (220 W. 9th St.).

Erica Jones' contribution, Tribute to Oluwatoyin “Toyin” Salau, is also at Blitzen.

The main figure in Jones’ work is Oluwatoyin Salau, a teenage Black Lives Matter activist who was kidnapped and murdered in June in Florida.

More Works Are on the Way

More works are planned, such as for Nomad Bar, 905 N. Orange St., and Bull Bay Caribbean Cuisine, 900 N. Orange St., the organizers said. It’s a question of identifying sites that will have the plywood up for a while and getting permission. Funding started with some forward-thinking leaders of the DuPont Co. (including F. Renard Hill and Benjamin Whitney, Jonathan’s brother), other individuals and Moonloop Photography. Donations for more murals can now be made at http://cityfestwilm.com/ through Cityfest, a nonprofit that aims to improve life in Wilmington, primarily through cultural and arts programming. Jarvis said she was pleased that the project provided “gigs with real money in what is a dry season for many artists.” The murals were intended to be temporary, but the Buccini/ Pollin Group, a key force in the revitalization of Wilmington, has reached out to the organizers about displaying them elsewhere after those businesses reopen. Whitney envisions them being exhibited throughout the state. Whitney and Jarvis, who were working at the Delaware Art Museum when this personal “passion project” began, formed Flux Creative Consulting on Sept. 1. It focuses on program planning, logistical support and cultural curation, and it includes the murals on its website. Del Tufo devoted hours with the artists while they were creating, “getting their stories and their rationale. These pieces made me feel something, and I want others to feel that. Art can heal. Art can be heard louder than violence and louder than criticism. This is obviously the coolest thing I’ve been involved with in 2020.”




Art is our Center, Community is our Heart

We are here for you! DelArt is open and we are delighted to welcome you back to the Museum. WILMINGTON, DE | DELART.ORG


This organization is supported, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. The Division promotes Delaware arts events on www.DelawareScene.com. Left to right: Untitled (detail), 2000s. Mitch Lyons (1938-2018). Clay monoprint, composition: 40 x 30 inches. Delaware Art Museum, Gift of the artist, 2012. © Estate of Mitch Lyons. | Ophelia’s Light, 2019. Photo by Joe McFetridge.


The Art of


At an early age, Jermaine LaFate found power in words. The discovery proved to be life changing. Final installment of a four-part series

By Leeann Wallett

Today, Jermaine LaFate resides in Phoenix, Az., however, the lessons he learned from mom (artist Eunice LaFate) and his Wilmington upbringing travel well.


ermaine LaFate never had the patience to sit down with brush in hand, like his mother, folk artist Eunice LaFate, whose artwork and words were featured in the July 2020 issue. Instead, he was drawn to the spoken and written word and how they could be disseminated in unique ways. From an early age, LaFate (Scrum Master and Senior Agile Coach at Choice Hotels International) was constantly surrounded by art. “My mother’s art hung all over our walls. Our house looked like an art gallery,” says LaFate. “At the time, I thought painting was her hobby. I didn’t know it became a business and an identity for her.” This created an ideal environment for LaFate and his friends to explore their creativity and freedom of expression, including the art of rap. Growing up in the late ‘90s, we listened to a lot of hip-hop,” says LaFate. “The genre spoke of the Black experience in impoverished neighborhoods,” something which inspired LaFate and his friends to form neighborhood teen groups to write and showcase their love of the spoken word. He and his friends would hang out in LaFate’s basement for hours on end, honing their talent, critiquing others raps and enjoying the overall flow of a good rap. LaFate didn’t realize it then, but all the days he spent working on his literary expression occupied enough of his time to keep him guarded from the negative elements of his neighborhood on the East Side of Wilmington.

“As a child, I saw a lot of things outside of my home that were detrimental to me and my peers’ well-being,” says LaFate. “The arts were a refuge from the violence, drugs and crime that were prevalent on the East Side.” Eventually, Jermaine’s passion for words would lead him to a degree in mass communication at Virginia State University where, in addition to a full course load, LaFate played guard and offensive tackle for the VSU Trojans football team. Prior to graduating college in 2006, LaFate was named CIAA Scholar-Athlete of the Year, boasting a 3.88 GPA. ►


THE ART OF COMMUNICATIONS continued from previous page


Though he doesn’t identify as an artist, Jermaine LaFate says his background has helped him see the artistry in everyday things.

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As far back as Jermaine can remember, his house was open to anyone in the neighborhood. LaFate’s parents, Eunice and Robert LaFate, spent a lot of time teaching Jermaine the values associated with the Jamaican culture, including the importance of “loving your family and having pride in your community,” he says. And every summer, LaFate would fly to Jamaica to spend time with his grandparents, Aletha and Headly Hanniford. “I learned at a very young age how influential and beloved my grandmother was to her community,” he says. “I saw my mother as an extension of my grandmother, in the way she opened her home and how she gave back to the neighborhood.” As an only child, LaFate’s natural inclination was to befriend other neighborhood children through programs he was associated with such as the YMCA’s East Wilmington summer camp where he met best friend and fellow “Arts as Prevention” participant Kevin Frazier (featured in our August 2020 issue). “The foundation of many of my lifelong relationships was shaped from my experiences with neighborhood childhood friends,” says LaFate.

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As one of the first four “Arts as Prevention” participants, LaFate sees the power in the arts. “I believe that everyone is an artist,” he says. He credits his mother’s process of “blank canvassing” to his success in many facets of his life. “Art is very much like ‘blank canvassing,’ taking an idea of the mind, processing it and then turning it into something visible to the eye,” says LaFate. “If you can do that, you’re an artist.” LaFate and lifelong friend, Andre Harris, also an “Arts as Prevention” participant (featured in our September issue), cofounded Cliq Mentor Foundation, a venture that will focus on mentoring for elementary and middle school-aged youth in

Wilmington using the “Arts as Prevention” model to promote positive behaviors and actions. LaFate and Harris intend to collaborate with like-minded businesses like LaFate Gallery, owned by his mother, Eunice, which recently celebrated its fifth anniversary at its Market Street location. Their hope for the venture is to provide much-needed resources to “…empower youth and build their self-esteem and self-worth, no matter what their life circumstances are,” says LaFate. “We want to take the concept that ‘every child is creative’ and focus on his or her ability to create art, in order to prevent other destructive behaviors and actions.”


Power of Communication

Though LaFate does not identify as an artist, he still sees art in everyday things. From his unique artistic upbringing and mother’s “blank canvassing” approach, LaFate used these tools to help navigate both his football and communications career. LaFate never played football as a child. His parents were too concerned about his safety. It was only once LaFate’s older cousin, Kendall Brower, convinced LaFate’s parents to let him try out for football at Charter School of Wilmington, that his parents saw his potential. “[Kendall] urged my father to put me into pee-wee football camps,” says LaFate. “He joked that I was ‘too big’ to be wasting my size on baseball.” Looking back, LaFate sees how closely football mimicked the arts. “I had to learn how plays were drawn up, and how to work together as a team in order for the play to work correctly,” says LaFate. “Football is a structured process and was already familiar to me because of my experience with the ‘Arts as Prevention’ program.” LaFate also sees the metaphorical link from his mother’s artistic process to his career in project management. “The moment my mother sat down at the table, she would plan her painting, stencil out the image, mix the color and then paint on the canvas,” he says. “The painting wasn’t finished until she signed her name. This process is exactly what we do in project management. We take an idea or concept and turn it into reality.” LaFate began working at ING Direct in 2007 as a sales associate and moved up the ranks to become a sales coach after only four years at the company. During that time, he took A Concert Benefit for the Christian Salcedo Music Scholarship management courses and made some distinct impressions upon senior leadership because of his strong grasp of business systems. Featuring Live Music from: LaFate understood complex coding languages and development processes, which enabled him to become certified as a Scrum Master in Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) methodology. It’s a process which is used in the Agile model and is an “iterative approach to delivering a project throughout its life cycle,” according to the Association of Project Management. In his current position at Choice Hotels International, which Proceeds benefit Scholarships for franchises nearly 7,000 hotels in more than 40 countries and music students at The Christina benefit scholarships for music students Proceeds benefitProceeds Scholarships for territories, LaFate uses his project management expertise and Cultural Arts Center at The Christina Cultural Arts Center atbenefit The Scholarships Christinafor Proceeds knowledge of business functionality to improve upon the usermusic students students at The Christina socially distanced masks required bit.ly/32H62xg Cultural Arts Center • Freshmusic Locally Brewed Beer for purchase experience and enhance certain functions within the branded Cultural Arts Center tools of a hotel’s website. Proceeds benefit Scholarships for Fresh locally brewed beer • Food Truck on premise masks required food truck socially distanced music students The Christina Though communication became his full-time career, LaFateatsocially distanced masks required bring a picnic blanket or FreshDistance locally brewed beer food truck Seating Cultural Arts Center• Socially camping chairs will occasionally attend spoken word gatherings to perform things Fresh locally brewed bring beer food truck a picnic blanket or camping chairs he has written in the past, including Sleep Walkers (Day 3), distanced a piece masks required socially bring a picnic blanket or Fresh locally brewed beer food truck he wrote back in 2010. camping chairs

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— Thank you for reading part four of the four-part series: The Gift of Inspiration. Past articles can be found in the July, August and September 2020 issues of Out & About at OutAndAboutnow.com/archives


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he column at right ran in April of 2006. A friend recently reminded me of the piece, how it had stuck with him all these years, and suggested I re-run it now that a modified version of sports has returned and many of us are in a state of deep appreciation. So, I revisited the 14-year-old column, remembered the moment as if it were yesterday, and figured why not? Perhaps it can ease some anxiety, provide the valuable perspective of a former Little League parent. And, it is our Sports Issue.

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Today, my wife and I are on the other side of our kids’ sports journeys. Both daughter and son stayed with their games (lacrosse and baseball) through high school and parlayed their skills into opportunities to attend respected universities. Lucky them. Lucky us. Those were exciting years, but also years filled with significant anxiety as we navigated travel ball, showcases, college recruitment, and the teenage years—not to mention the significant resources it takes to pursue such a goal. I can’t imagine the anxiety parents are facing today amidst COVID-19. Instead of capitalizing on opportunity, they’re dealing with cancelled opportunity after cancelled opportunity. Then there are the families without the resources for travel sports. With the possibility of shortened seasons or seasons cancelled altogether, how will their kids be seen? What opportunities are they missing? Maybe none. This crisis has changed everyone’s reality. You’re not the only one who missed the showcase, everyone missed the showcase. The season won’t just be cancelled for you, it will be cancelled for everyone. It’s out of your control. Adjustments will be made. So, while those adjustments are being made, capitalize. Have all the catches, kicks, volleys, tosses, swings, rallies, shoot-arounds… your new time at home allows. And when cold weather sets in soon, get creative. Think your kid has the potential to play in college? Then use this time to create a video of them exhibiting their mastery of the sports’ fundamentals and send it to coaches. The silver lining in this crisis is that it has slowed our worlds down—providing many the gift of more one-on-one time with their kids. Take advantage of this time. Have another catch. I am confident the future holds many memorable sports moments for your family. But none will be more important than that catch. ►

IF THE GLOVE FITS… (Reprinted from Out & About, April 2006) “Whaddya think about the season?” my friend asked innocently. I jumped on the question like a hanging curve. “It’s going to be great,” I gushed. “I think Bowen is really up for it this year. He was enthusiastic about tryouts. He’s asking me to have a catch. And, you know, he has a great natural swing. And a good arm. He needs to work on his fielding, but he’s not as intimidated by the ball as he was last year. I’m not pushing, but he really seems like he wants to play. And if he’s into it, well… Ah, it’s gonna be… As I re-established eye contact, I noticed my friend’s bemused expression give way to an approving nod. I’d guessed fastball and he’d thrown a changeup. I stepped out of the box. “Ahhhhhh, you meant the Phillies?” I said. “Geez, sorry about that. Guess I got a little carried away.” But I wasn’t sorry. The Phillies? I love their middle infield, Ryan Howard is going to be an All-Star, and the acquisition of center fielder Aaron Rowand was a great move. But losing Billy Wagner is gonna hurt. And I worry about their starting pitching.

As I re-established eye contact, I noticed my friend’s bemused expression give way to an approving nod. I’d guessed fastball and he’d thrown a changeup. I stepped out of the box. Now, can we talk about THE SEASON? The season, innocently enough, began about a month ago. There I was, organizing the shoe closet (exciting guy, huh?) when my son unexpectedly came up to me and said, “D-a-a-a-d, come on. How do you expect me to be any good if we don’t practice? Let’s go have a catch.” A catch? With a baseball? You and me? OK, saying I felt like Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams is a bit overdramatic, but so what? I felt like Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams. This was a breakthrough. A defining moment. To this point, my son’s passion for baseball was in a dead heat with his zest for cleaning his bedroom. A catch? A baseball catch? Last one in the yard has to take out the recycling! Stop right there. I know what you’re thinking: Another dad trying to work out his baseball frustrations through his child. Let the kid make his own choices. Excuse me, but I don’t have any baseball frustrations. Sure, I wanted to be the next Cookie Rojas when I was 12, but by 16 I realized I had a better chance of being an astronaut than a professional baseball player. Trouble is, I never wanted to be an astronaut. And you know what, I haven’t suffered a bit from my childhood love of baseball (though my consumption of hot dogs during $1 Dog Night could surely come back to haunt me). Truth is, it still brings a smile to my face to recall those Little League days. And isn’t it a parent’s responsibility to pass on the wisdom of one’s years? Now excuse me, I'm off to have a catch with Bowen. — Jerry duPhily

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Fifty Years of Public Service Scores of Wilmington youth learned much more than the pick-and-roll from Larry Morris By Bob Yearick Photos by Joe del Tufo


arry Morris was born and raised in Bridgeton, N. J., but it was Wilmington that transformed him. When Morris arrived here 52 years ago, he was an indifferent student who entered Goldey-Beacom College on academic probation. And as a standout high school wrestler, he rarely picked up a basketball. Today, his picture is in the Goldey-Beacom Distinguished Alumni Gallery, and for decades he used basketball as a vehicle for community outreach while mentoring scores of boys and girls throughout the city. For that, Wilmington can thank Wilhelmeana Morris. “Billie” Morris was the iron-willed mother of four young boys who was suddenly widowed when her husband, Oscar, died in a car accident a year after the Morrises had moved to a new home just outside Bridgeton. Her second oldest says his mother was more than ready to be head of the family. “My mom ruled everything. She was a disciplinarian,” Morris says. “When she said something, it wasn’t open for discussion. She didn’t care how we felt, and she didn’t care how other people raised their kids.” ►



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His mother didn’t have a high school education, so continued from previous page that may be why she didn’t demand academic excellence from her sons, but she did demand that they pass every course. Larry met those minimal requirements (“I was not a good student,” he admits) while pursuing sports—baseball, football, and wrestling. Midway through his senior year, his mother informed him that when he graduated he had two options: college or the army. It was 1968, and the latter meant Vietnam. “So I was desperate,” Morris says. His college options were understandably limited, but he did get a postcard from Goldey-Beacom. Laughing, he says now, “They must have sent those to everybody.” He filled out the card, sent it in, and was accepted—on a probationary basis. “It was a business school, and my wrestling coach taught bookkeeping, so I took a night course from him to learn what debits and credits were,” says Morris. While attending Goldey he lived for two years at the Central YMCA in Wilmington, where he was an anomaly—a Black kid who didn’t know basketball. Some of his buddies were on the Goldey basketball team, and when he joined their pick-up games, he says, “I became a friendly joke: ‘We had Larry last time, so you have to take him this game.’” But he learned—well enough to be a regular in what he calls the “rock ‘em, sock ‘em” lunchtime games at Central (See sidebar pg. 25). Meanwhile, when he and his friends went out at night, he began to notice the number of unsupervised youngsters walking the streets. Says Billie Morris’ son: “I wondered where their mothers were.” He gradually realized that working with youth was where his interests lay, not the business world Goldey-Beacom was preparing him for. So, after receiving his associate degree, he went on to study Sociology at Lincoln University in Oxford, Pa.

In 1969, while a student at Goldey, he accepted his first job working with children—in the Summer Youth Program at the Y. That set him on a 50-year journey of community and public service, most of it dedicated to youth. In that half century, he has mentored scores of young men and women and served as an example of what one person can accomplish through long hours and dedication to a cause he believes in. Along the way, he founded the Morris Youth Center in Wilmington’s Hilltop neighborhood and the HOMEGIRL Developmental Basketball League, and served two terms as president of the Wilmington NAACP. In the 1980s, while he was president, the Wilmington branch was recognized on several occasions by the Regional and National Offices for membership growth and active involvement. His efforts have earned him dozens of honors, including the Spirit of Philadelphia Award presented by WPVI-TV, the Jefferson Award, Big Brother of the Year, Delaware Outstanding Young Man of the Year, Martin Luther King, Jr. Award for Public Service, the DuPont Company’s Unsung Hero Award, and the Omega Psi Phi Community Service Award. Morris, who recently turned 70, retired from his last job—community liaison for Gov. John Carney—in 2019. He had served Carney previously as director of Constituent Affairs when Carney was a U.S. Congressman, and was also on his staff when Carney was lieutenant governor. Carney says he recruited Morris, whom he had known for years, because he knew the young community leader would be a valuable addition to his staff. “Larry was a great barometer of what I needed to focus on for a part of the community that I represent and work for,” says the governor. He was particularly struck by Morris’ impact on the youth of the city. “His affection for kids was real and heartfelt, and I was always amazed at the number of people who would come up to him and thank him for helping them 10 or 20 years ago. And almost none of what he did was lucrative for him financially, but it’s where his heart is.” Surprisingly soft-spoken, Morris is rightly proud of his career, but it’s his early involvement with youth as a coach and mentor that he harked back to in a recent

interview. And once again, the influence of his mother, who recently passed away, was evident. “Children need and want discipline,” says the father of three grown girls and five grandchildren. “And it has to be consistent.” At the same time, he says, “you have to show them that you love them.” Morris’ entrée into community service came through the game that had been so foreign to him—basketball. After developing passable skills as a player, he turned himself into a first-rate coach by watching games on TV and in person, and asking questions of those who had played the sport for years. He was a structured but caring and fun coach, and he soon was leading championship teams of both boys and girls. Sometimes it was a mix of both. In the NAACP Youth League, he pushed through a rule that every team had to have a girl on it. “Some of the guys rebelled, of course,” he says. Undaunted, the next year Morris pushed through a rule requiring two girls on every team. But his coaching wasn’t limited to how to work the pickand-roll or the 2-3 zone defense. He didn’t just produce good basketball players; he produced solid citizens. Being on a Larry Morris team or in a Larry Morris league was as much about keeping up with school work and being a good person as it was about basketball. His teams met regularly to do homework, and he expected everyone to show up on time for the study session. Any late-comers got a quick explanation about their responsibility to themselves and to the team.

Children "need and want discipline," says Morris. "At the same time, you have to show them that you love them."

Legacies—on and off the Court

Those high standards, coupled with Morris’ success as a coach, attracted some of the top talent in the city of Wilmington. AJ English may be the most famous name in the Morris list of legacies. English and his Howard High team won the state championship in 1985, and he was Delaware Player of the Year in ‘86. He went on to Virginia Union University, where he won NCAA Division II National Player of the Year honors in 1990, and followed that with a two-year stint in the NBA and several years in overseas leagues. ►




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PLAYING THE LONG GAME Those accomplishments had continued from previous page their genesis in the age 9-13 NAACP Youth League headed by Morris in the 1970s and early ‘80s. English was only eight when he lied about his age to get into the league “because,” he says, “that was where all the best players were, and I wanted to measure where I was compared to them.” English, who today lives in Middletown, has been mentoring kids throughout Delaware since his retirement and now runs English Lessons Youth Mentoring Program. He remembers his first mentor, Morris, as “both a big brother and a father figure, especially to those of us who didn’t have a dad in our lives.” “His presence would deter bad behavior,” English says. “We needed someone like that in our lives. He would discipline you, but he would also love on you.” Dr. Taquan Stewart, who is with CalStateTEACH Teacher Education Program in California, played in the NAACP Youth League from 1977-80, and remembers Morris for his constant insistence on hard work as the path to success. “He was a great believer in that old saying, ‘luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity,’” says Stewart. “That applied no matter what you were involved in, whether it’s basketball or life. His philosophy was ‘practice, watch and listen, then practice some more.’” “Without Larry doing what he did,” adds Stewart, “many children would have been lost.” Community service was part of playing for Morris, according to Tracy Howell, former standout at A. I. duPont High and the University of Delaware who joined HOMEGIRLS when she was 11. Howell, who became like a fourth daughter to him, played for Morris until she entered A. I. She says he would get the girls into “whatever league was available” in and around Wilmington. “We played all over,” she says. Now a case management supervisor with Highmark Delaware Health Options, Howell says playing for Coach Morris came with certain obligations. “Every Sunday morning, he would get us up to go feed the homeless at a downtown church. And whatever activity was going on in Wilmington, he would make sure we were a part of it. He was a tremendous positive influence on me.” Not all of Morris’ legacies played basketball for him. State Rep. Sherry Dorsey Walker was on a track team that he organized. “My sister and I weren’t allowed to go many places by ourselves, but we could go to the Morris Youth Center because my parents knew being with Larry was like being with them,” says Dorsey Walker. “He was like an extension of the family.” Walker says his rules included no profanity and no fighting. “It was OK to disagree,” she says, “but you had to do it respectfully. Don’t raise your voice. Use your mind and articulate your thoughts. Don’t allow emotions to get the best of you.” To this day, she says, “I live by those principles. It takes a lot to make me angry.”

The Power of Sports The Morris grandchildren (l-r) Skyy, Stone, Maia, Saige and Masen. In the blanket, the newest addition, great grandson Ace (then just 12 days old).

Watershed Moments

As Morris looks back on his career from the perspective of retirement, he is humbled by some of its watershed moments. He remembers in particular how, as a 29-year-old, he had the honor of introducing the Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr., when the father of the late civil rights leader came to the city to speak in 1979. Morris always tried to include his three daughters in his community activities as well as his basketball teams, and he brought three-year-old Tamarra, his only child at the time, to the speech at West Presbyterian Church. He made sure that Tamarra gave Dr. King a hug after his speech, creating a memory that neither father nor daughter will forget. (Today, Tamarra Morris is director of Economic Development for New Castle County.) Three of Morris’ grandchildren live across the street from his West Third Street home, and the doting grandfather fills some of his time these days by babysitting. He also hopes to continue speaking out on civil rights and political issues, and he talks of starting to work on a book soon. The subtext of his career of public service has been helping others to flourish in a society that often discriminates —consciously or unconsciously—against people of color. His views on the subject were articulated in an essay in the July issue of Out & About. “The silence of good White people in America is what has perpetuated the status quo and has prevented America from becoming all that it could be—or all that it says it is,” he wrote. . . . “Where do we go from here? We must have real dialog that leads to action that, in fact, makes America the place where all men and women are free and where liberty and justice are indeed for all.” In the interview for this story, Morris expanded on those comments. Surprisingly, he believes that Donald Trump has been good for America in this sense: “Trump’s extreme racism, combined with the recent shootings of Black people, has got White people for the first time recognizing and understanding the race problem in America. Black people have been talking about these problems for years, and now Whites are talking about them. Now we have to work across racial lines to solve them.”


uring my interview with Larry Morris for this profile, the pervasive and bonding nature of sports was brought home to me once again. It turns out that Larry and I—a couple of senior citizens, one Black, one White, who had never formally met before—had two sports connections. The first was basketball. I remembered Larry from lunchtime pickup games played decades ago at the Central YMCA in Wilmington. As we started the interview, we reminisced a bit about those intense, no-autopsy-no-foul noontime wars. They were stocked with DuPonters, bankers, businessmen, cops, and Y employees like Larry. We talked about some of the players— many of them no longer with us—remembering their quirks and abilities, or, in some cases, their lack thereof. And then the interview revealed another connection: Larry’s high school wrestling coach was from my hometown—Lock Haven, Pa. Indeed, the coach, Paul Kuntz, was a bit of a legend in the small, wrestling-mad town on the banks of the Susquehanna River. You see, Kuntz had only one arm—the result of a boyhood accident. But despite his handicap, he wrestled at Indiana State University in Pennsylvania and then went into teaching and a stellar career as a high school coach. Larry remembers him as a role model and mentor, and recalled how he and some teammates had helped the coach clear the land around his home, and how Kuntz had tutored him in bookkeeping before Larry went off to study business at Goldey Beacom College. As I drove home from the interview, I reflected on how two disparate athletic endeavors— basketball and wrestling—had created an immediate connection between two people with equally disparate backgrounds. It demonstrated to me­—for about the 1,000th time in my life— the pervasive and bonding nature of sports. —Bob Yearick





Judy Johnson with Major League Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn during Johnson's 1975 Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

A Centennial Salute Negro Baseball League celebrates 100 years and Wilmington’s Judy Johnson is a big part of that history By Larry Lester Photos courtesy James Knott (lifelong friend of Judy Johnson)


here used to be two professional leagues—the Major Leagues and the Negro Leagues. They were separate but never equal. Despite the separation, the men of color believed in America’s national pastime, more than the pastime believed in them. They had the will and skill, the grit and spit, and the fire and desire to play a beloved game between the white foul lines at the highest level. This year, we celebrate the centennial anniversary of the founding of the Negro National League at the Paseo YMCA in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1920. League founder Andrew “Rube” Foster boasted: “We are the ship, all else the sea,” symbolizing the league’s distant relationship with apartheid baseball.


“Foster’s Chicago American Giants won the league championship the first three years before the Kansas City Monarchs ascended to the throne in 1923. That same year, Ed Bolden, a postal worker out of Philadelphia, started the Eastern Colored League, and put his Hilldale Club in the mix with the Cuban Stars, Brooklyn Royal Giants, Bacharach Giants (Atlantic City), New York Lincoln Giants and the Baltimore Black Sox. The following season, Hilldale, led by Wilmington’s own William “Judy” Johnson, hosted the Kansas City Monarchs in the first official Colored World Series. In the series, Johnson (.324 regular-season average) led all batters, hitting .364 and slugging out a .614 average. He also topped everyone in RBIs (8) and hits (16) while adding an inside-the-park home run in a thrilling nine-game series lost to the Monarchs. Cool Papa Bell once bragged, "Johnson was the best hitter among the four top third basemen in the Negro Leagues, but no one would drive in as many clutch runs as he would. He was a solid ballplayer, real smart, dependable, quiet, not flashy at all, but could handle anything that came up. No matter how much the pressure, no matter how important the play or the throw or the hit, Judy could do it when it counted." “I played against every big leaguer from Babe Ruth on down,” says Johnson. “When I was with Hilldale, on Sundays we’d go up to New York and play the Bushwicks, a white team in Brooklyn, and they had some Major Leaguers on that club. It got so for a while that we’d play the Bushwicks on the first and last Sunday of every month. We were drawing more people with the Bushwicks than the Dodgers were drawing in Ebbets Field sometimes.” Johnson added, “We played against the Philadelphia A’s [full team] one year and we beat them five out of six games.” Former Crawford outfielder Ted Page bragged: "Judy Johnson was the smartest third baseman I ever came across. A scientific ball player, did everything with grace and poise. You talk about playing third base—heck, he was better than anybody I saw and I saw Brooks Robinson, Mike Schmidt and even Pie Traynor. He had a powerful accurate arm. He could do anything, come in for a ball, cut if off at the line, or range way over toward the shortstop hole. He was really something." Page added: “He played a heady game of baseball, none of this just slugging the ball, a man on first base, and he just dies there because you didn't hit the ball up against the wall. Judy would steal your signals. He should have been in the Major Leagues 15 or 20 years as a coach. They talk about Negro managers. I always thought that Judy should have made perfect Major League manager.” The ultimate clutch-player, Johnson specialized in game-winning hits and rally-killing snatches at third base. He was a bashful, quiet performer with an astonishing ability to perform under pressure. He was respected for his intellectual approach to the game, excelling with grace and poise while providing a positive influence for teammates and, occasionally, opponents. ►

CCAC presents: The 100th Anniversary of The Negro Leagues Featuring Judy Johnson— Delaware's Local Hero Exhibit runs through October 30


his year marks the 100th anniversary of Negro League Baseball. To commemorate this landmark, Andrea McCoy-Carty (Chair for the Judy Johnson Memorial Foundation in Wilmington and the Interim Executive Director for The Simmons Museum of Negro Leagues Baseball, in Owings Mills, Md.) has curated a striking assemblage of memorabilia and artifacts— photographs, uniforms, booklets and more—from the Negro League's rich history and archives via loans from national private collectors. Exhibit viewable Mon-Fri (9am-3pm) by reservation only at https://ccacde.tix.com. CCAC offers 20-minute exhibit visiting slots with a four-person maximum during each time slot. Entrance/exit is only through the Market Street entrance of the building. Temperature checks will be conducted at the door, and masks must be worn at all times within the exhibit and CCAC building. An exhibit information booklet will be viewable on patrons' phones via QR code onsite. Touching of any exhibit items is prohibited, but photography is permitted.


Monday through Friday, 9:00am (first entry) to 2:30pm (last entry), broken down daily into 20-minute segments with 10-minute "change time" between each segment.



A CENTENNIAL SALUTE continued from previous page

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Johnson credits Hall of Fame shortstop John Henry "Pop" Lloyd with his early development. "He's the man I give the credit to for polishing my skills. He taught me how to play third base and how to protect myself. John taught me more baseball than anyone else." In February 1954, according to the Chicago Defender, Johnson became America’s first affirmative action coach with the Philadelphia A’s. Earle Mack, vice-president of the A’s, mentioned he wanted to make sure his new Puerto Rican and African-American acquisitions, Vic Power and Bob Trice, were “starting on the right foot.” Mack added that Power is “…expected to hit at a Major League level, but fielding is his doubtful quality.” Johnson must have done a great coaching job as Power became one of the best fielding first basemen in the game. Earlier, while serving as a scout from 1951-53, Johnson had a chance to sign a cross-handed hitter from the Indianapolis Clowns named Hank Aaron for $3,500, but the A’s reneged on the deal. Although the Athletics respected Johnson’s evaluation gifts, the team felt the price tag for the future home run king was a little hefty. In 1975, Judy Johnson became the first Delaware native inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame

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As a scout, Johnson had a chance to sign Henry Aaron but the Philadelphia A's thought the price was too high.

A collection of Negro League Baseball legends with then-MLB Commissioner Peter Ueberroth. From l-r: Judy Johnson, Monte Irvin, Cool Papa Bell, Buck Leonard.

in Cooperstown, N.Y. And 20 years later, a Judy Johnson bronze statue by sculptor Phil Sumpter was unveiled at Daniel S. Frawley Stadium, home of the Wilmington (Del.) Blue Rocks of the Carolina League. Also that year, the residence of Judy Johnson became the first Negro Leagues player’s home to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Located on the corner of Kiamensi Avenue and Newport Road, the home was recognized by the Delaware Historic Markers. The dedication was attended by his daughter Loretta and her husband, Billy Bruton. Bruton, a former Milwaukee Braves outfielder, also played in the Negro Leagues under the alias James Bruton for the Louisville Clippers in 1949. Currently, there are 35 Negro League players and executives in the Hall of Fame today, but their relative anonymity is a cruel joke on every sports fan in America. Few fans can name a handful of inductees and that is why Black baseball history matters. It begs the question: Would baseball be baseball without the contributions of Ernie Banks or Willie Mays or Hank Aaron or Roy Campanella or Larry Doby or Monte Irvin? All are Hall of Famers who started their careers in Black professional baseball. I tip my hat to the Christina Cultural Arts Center for taking steps toward inclusion of this dynamic, important and inspiring chapter in baseball history and in celebration of the centennial anniversary of the league’s founding. — Larry Lester is an author, historian and lecturer specializing in Negro League Baseball. He was co-founder of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum (NLBM) in Kansas City, Missouri, and served as its Research Director and Treasurer for five years (1991-1995). He was instrumental in the development of the museum's business plan and its incorporation in 1990. Along with attorney Thomas Busch, he was the driving force in its licensing program that generated $1.4 million in the museum’s start-up years.






hen I was growing up, sports pages were my classroom-away-from-the-classroom, and sportswriters were the teachers. It started with Stanley Woodward’s Football Yearbook when I was about 9. Woodward’s college rankings taught me geography (Urbana, Ill.; Lincoln, Neb.; Oxford, Miss.; Palo Alto, Calif.), a bit about commerce (Cornhuskers, Longhorns), and some history (Seminoles, Minutemen, Sooners), with a smattering of wildlife (Horned Frogs, Razorbacks) thrown in. The annual publication expanded my vocabulary with words like debut (describing, say, the first game of a talented quarterback—and which I of course pronounced dee-but) and formidable (referring to a strong defense, offense, or a particularly large lineman). I also came to understand that teams were often “elevens,” and passes were sometimes “aerials.” And then I discovered the pages of The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Evening Bulletin. I owe that to my childhood friend Dave Walker. He and I kept what might be called dueling scrapbooks. We would cut out pictures of our favorite players and teams from Woodward’s yearbook and the glossy, colorful pages of Sport magazine, then paste them in our scrapbooks. We often compared them, and one day I noticed that Dave had been filling his book with more current, black-and-white photos, obviously cut from newspapers. It certainly wasn’t our local paper—The Express (Lock Haven, Pa.)—which covered none of the major college or pro teams. Dave confessed that he was getting his material from two Philadelphia newspapers, and after that, I would beg my mother on a daily basis for the nickel or dime (I can’t remember the exact price) to buy at least one, and sometimes both, of those papers. The pages of the Inky and Evening Bulletin were a portal to great journalism, rendered in compelling prose. The Inquirer’s Frank Dolson was probably the first byline I noticed, and many more have followed. I continue to subscribe today, and I have been privileged to read guys like Sandy Grady, Stan Hochman, then Ray Didinger, and a little later, Jayson Stark. Nationally there were the stylings of the legendary Red Smith, the humor of Jim Murray and Dan Jenkins, the elegance of Frank Deford, and the poignancy of Billy Lyon. All of the latter five, unfortunately, no longer with us. More recently there was Gary Smith, a Delawarean who made a brief stop in Philly before gaining national prominence at Sports Illustrated and who is in the latest class of inductees to the Delaware Sports Hall of Fame. At the Inky, Frank Fitzpatrick, Marcus Hayes and Eagles beat writer Jeff McLane carry on the tradition of entertaining, often cerebral prose. I came to recognize that the sports pages often boasted the best writing in the paper, which is not surprising. Sports, after all, make

up the toy department of life, offering endlessly colorful stories full of unique characters. You want humor? The writers gave us a parade of fun and funny people, as disparate as Yogi Berra and Charles Barkley. Tragedy? There was Roberto Clemente and Philadelphia’s own Doc Halladay. Villains with unrivaled talent? How about O. J. Simpson, Barry Bonds and Pete Rose. And then there were the towering figures that transcended sports: Muhammad Ali, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Jim Brown, Wilt Chamberlain. I became so fascinated by this world that I started on the road of sports journalism myself. In fact, a year or two after college, I wangled an invitation to the New York City offices of Sports Illustrated from Herm Weiskopf, a former Express sports editor who went on to serve many years on the SI staff. Weiskopf welcomed his naïve visitor and, showing me a baseball that was cut in half, politely explained that he was doing a piece describing how a pitcher threw a curveball. But I soon realized I simply didn’t absolutely love sports beyond the big three—baseball, football, and basketball. So I went city-side, as they used to say, and eventually wound up, a bit to my chagrin, in corporate advertising and public relations. Today, through “The War on Words” (pg. 9), I sometimes tweak some writers, and send the occasional note of praise to others— Hayes, Fitzpatrick, McLane—while trying to convince the Inky’s Marc Narducci to use more contractions. Reading the sports pages continues to be both fun and informative —like watching Jeopardy every day for a lifetime. My thanks to all those writers—or scribes, as they were known when I first picked up the Inky—for supplying a key part of my education. — Bob Yearick


IS IT SAFE? Area restaurants are meeting COVID-19 safety requirements. Now, the challenge is convincing the public to dine inside.

By Pam George


n 2019, there were so many good restaurants in Wilmington and Southern Chester County, it was hard to pinpoint the best one for a date night, ladies’ lunch, or celebration dinner. That was particularly true during Brandywine Valley Restaurant Week; there wasn’t enough time to try all the multi-course specials.

Fast forward to fall 2020. There is still a bevy of first-class, independently owned restaurants. And this year, you have more time to savor the deals: Brandywine Valley Restaurant Week runs Oct 12-22. But given the pandemic, many diners are more worried about safety than choice or bargains. The good news: When it comes to safety, restaurants are stepping up to the plate. “Overall, we’ve been pleased,” says Jamie Mack, chief of Health Systems Protection in the Delaware Division of Public Health. “We recognize that there are a lot of challenges in operating this way.”

Swimming Against the Current

It started on March 16, 2020, when Governor John Carney closed restaurant dining rooms to help flatten the coronavirus curve. The next day, they were allowed to offer takeout and delivery. On June 1, restaurants could reopen at a limited capacity—initially 30%. Shortly after, Carney upped the capacity cap to 60%.

However, the state implanted certain restrictions, such as wearing a mask and complying with social distancing. Staff should always wear a face-covering; guests should wear one unless they are seated while eating or drinking. There should be six feet between tables and barstool groupings. Since June, DPH has made both routine and complaintbased inspections. The first visit focuses on education, he explains. A restaurant that does not check all the boxes must be compliant before the follow-up visit. “We routinely see improvements,” he says. If further action is needed, the restaurant might receive a warning letter or monetary fine. According to Mack, only one restaurant has been forced to close for failing to meet DDPH COVID-19 requirements and that establishment made the corrections needed and was permitted to reopen the next day. ►



IS IT SAFE? continued from previous page

Meanwhile, Carrie Leishman, president, and CEO of the Delaware Restaurant Association, is on a mission to show that restaurants are safe. Multiple government entities and inspectors already regulate eateries, she notes. The nonprofit organization recently sponsored an independent study to determine if Delaware’s establishments were complying with DPH COVID-19 guidelines. Individuals trained in safety protocols visited 75 restaurants throughout Delaware, from large chains to independent eateries. Some had bar service; others did not. The inspectors looked to see if the staff and guests were wearing masks. Were the tables properly distanced? Was hand sanitizer available? According to the results, at 84% of the targeted sites guests and staff wore face coverings. The tables were correctly spaced at nearly 94% of the locations, and COVID-19 signage was on display in 87.1% of the sites. And 93% of those inspectors indicated they are likely to return to a restaurant for inside dining. “Most restaurants are doing all they can to ensure the safety of the customer,” Leishman says.

Creating a Safe Haven

mThanksgiving m & Holiday Event Spaces are booking up fast!

It all starts with the staff, says Xavier Teixido, owner of Harry’s Savoy Grill in Brandywine Hundred and co-owner of Kid Shelleen’s Charcoal House & Saloon in Wilmington. (A second Kid Shelleen’s is still planned for Branmar Shopping Center.) “I mean, here’s a situation in which the most dangerous thing in the room could be a person,” the seasoned restaurateur says. “We can’t mitigate risk to the guest unless we’ve mitigated it first—as much as we can—with the staff.” Management should ask workers the same questions every time they report for their shift. “Do you know anyone with COVID? Have you been exposed?” Teixido says. If the answer is yes, the employees should stay home until they have received a negative test result. Dan Tagle, the executive chef at Krazy Kat’s in Montchanin, agrees that training is paramount. Tagle has taught the ProStart high school curriculum, which was developed by the National Restaurant Association. As soon as the state gave restaurants the green light, he scheduled a Zoom call with his staff to go over the regulations. “One takeaway from teaching is to remove any and all gray areas,” he says. “Be as specific as possible. Follow the rules; it’s common sense. Wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands.” If an employee forgets a mask, Tagle gives them one from the stash in his office. He believes in regularly revisiting the training. “It’s as important as the training itself,” he says. “You know, this isn’t normal for everybody.” Since servers aren’t making as much in tips as they have in the past, Tagle does whatever he can to boost morale, including reading aloud positive customer feedback.

Signs of Change

Diners with a keen eye will notice differences at their favorite eatery. At Krazy Kat’s, chargers are no longer preset on the table. “We don’t even put candles on the table unless a guest requests it,” Tagle says. “We’re offering packets of salt and pepper. I’m not the biggest fan of that, but it is what it is.” Pepper grinders are produced upon demand, but they’re sanitized after each use. At Harry’s Savoy and Kid Shelleen’s, guests can use their phone to scan a QR code and read a contactless menu. Buckley’s now has single-use paper menus.


Photo courtesy Harry’s Savoy Grill


Courtesy of an employee with carpentry skills, Harry’s Savoy Grill has installed physical barriers between booths to enhance safety.

The Centreville restaurant has always followed a strict cleaning protocol. After all, co-owner and chef Tom Hannum worked at the Hotel du Pont when the DuPont Co. owned it. “I learned to follow the rules,” says Hannum, whose restaurant recently served the governor. “It’s easy to do.” Admittedly, there are more rules to follow. Buckley’s started sanitizing seat cushions. At Krazy Kat’s, even fresh flowers get a spritz of disinfectant, although it hastens their demise. “We’re changing them out regularly,” Tagle says. The flower budget is not the only line item that’s increasing. Hand sanitizer is readily available at most restaurants, and, often, it’s placed front and center. Along with hand sanitizer stations, Teixido has installed air purifiers and UV-light sanitizers in the dining rooms. Both Harry’s Savoy Grill and Buckley’s Tavern have installed custom-made physical barriers between booths, which allows them to seat more people. “They look like they’ve always been there,” notes Hannum, who is fortunate to have an employee with carpentry skills. Since seeing is believing, Teixido and partner Kelly O’Hanlon updated Kid Shelleen’s floors and kitchen surfaces, so they are clearly “clean and new,” he says. Now more than ever before, staff uniforms and masks must be immaculate, he adds. All masks must cover their nose and mouth. “But on the other side, how do you express hospitality with a mask?” he asks. Servers have learned to place their palms together and bow or touch their heart to express gratitude. Ultimately, the choice to dine in a restaurant depends on your comfort level. “If you are in a population that can be considered vulnerable—either because of age or an underlying illness—you may want to consider staying home,” Mack says. “If you do choose to go out, educate yourself about what restaurants should be doing to serve people in a COVID-safe manner. Pay attention when you enter the restaurant. “Does it look like they’re doing a good job? Is everybody spaced out? Are all the servers and staff wearing face coverings? You can make an educated decision,” says Mack, who has dined out with his family. Sitting outside is an option at many restaurants, and operators are looking to extend the alfresco season. And if you still don’t want to dine on-site, consider takeout. Krazy Kat’s and Harry’s Savoy are among the restaurants that are offering specials to go.




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A Growing


At a new venue, the Xtianstock benefit concert continues to raise funds along with spirits in the name of music education By Jim Miller


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—Xtianstock will be held from 2 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, October 17 at Dew Point Brewing Co. in Yorklyn. Tickets and addition information available at lightupthequeen.org

Artwork: Kevin McCabe


hristian Salcedo was a well-loved area musician and music teacher who died in a tragic accident in 2016. Thankfully, his family, friends and associates have continued to keep his benevolent spirit alive with both a concert and music scholarship named in his honor. On Saturday, October 17, at Dew Point Brewing Co. in Yorklyn, six bands will perform at Xtianstock, a regularly-held event that raises money for the Christian Salcedo Music Scholarship fund. Over the past three years, four scholarships have been awarded to area children living in economically-challenged circumstances. Administered via the Light Up The Queen Foundation, the $1000 scholarships provide young music students a starter instrument and lessons at Christina Cultural Arts Center in Wilmington. Two more scholarships will be awarded this year. “I think that Christian would be so tickled to see how his legacy is honored with Xtianstock and the scholarship—that his friends and family continue to work and play together for the sake of giving some promising kids a new instrument and beginner music lessons,” says Ellen Salcedo, Christian’s wife, who often performed with him onstage. Ellen Salcedo will perform at this year’s Xtianstock along with the Butch Zito Band, Earl Anem, Lyric Drive, Trip Hazzard, and Younger Than Charlie. This will be the fourth Xtianstock concert, though the first to be hosted at Dew Point Brewing Co. Previous concerts were held at an intimate performance area called The Farm, located on Butch Zito’s property. Popularity of the event necessitated the move to a larger venue. Proper COVID-era protocols will be in place at Dew Point’s outdoor performance area. All guests are required to wear masks and invited to bring lawn chairs and blankets. The brewery’s beer will be available for purchase during the event. “It’s encouraging that, in a time when a lot of events are being cancelled, this event can continue to raise money in a fun and safe way,” Ellen Salcedo says. “Christian loved to play music for people and put smiles on their faces.”


GAME-TIME DECISIONS Looking for a fun place to watch the game? Or get good grub to-go or delivered? We got you covered. CAFÉ RIVIERA 4737 Concord Pike # 340, Wilmington, DE 19803

CafeRivierade.com Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 4 NFL Sunday Ticket? No Beers on Tap: Yes, variety Bottled Beers: Yes, variety Crowd Favorites (Food): Pizza, Pasta, Jumbo Wings Game Specials: Large Cheese Pizza, Wings and Cheese Fries for $20.00. Available for dine-in, take-out and delivery. Large Cheese Pizza, Wings, Cheese Fries and a Pitcher of Beer for $25. Available for dine-in only. Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes

CHELSEA TAVERN 821 N Market St, Wilmington, DE 19801

ChelseaTavern.com Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 4 NFL Sunday Ticket? No Beers on Tap: 33 Bottled Beers: Over 200 Crowd Favorites (Food): Wings, Burgers, Pizza Game Specials: ALL pizzas $10, ALL Drafts $4. Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes

DEER PARK TAVERN 108 W Main St, Newark, DE 19711

DeerParkTavern.com online ordering available Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 21 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 23 Bottled Beers: 34 Crowd Favorites (Food): Wings Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes

DORCEA 1314 Washington St, Wilmington, DE 19801

Dorcea.com Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 6 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 14, mostly craft Bottled Beers: Manor Hill Citra Splendor, New Begium Juicy Haze, assorted domestics and seltzers Crowd Favorites (Food): Wings, Meatloaf, Salmon Game Specials: Chicken/beef nachos; BBQ pulled pork; Miller Lite/Fordham drafts; Bud/Bud Light/Bud Light Seltzers Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes Delivery: Adding delivery through TOAST online app in October

GROTTO PIZZA 16 locations throughout Delaware

GrottoPizza.com online ordering available

COLUMBUS INN 2216 Pennsylvania Ave Wilmington, DE 19806

ColumbusInn.net Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 5 NFL Sunday Ticket? No Beers on Tap: 8 Bottled Beers: 30 Crowd Favorites (Food): Shrimp tacos, pierogies, hummus Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes

Newark, Middletown, Dover, Camden

Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 15-25 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 6-14 Bottled Beers: 16-22 Crowd Favorites (Food): Pizza, wings, bolis, calzones and cheesesteaks Game Specials: $4 Miller Lite Big Beers - All Day, Every Day. Saturday/Sunday: $4 Coors Light Big Beers, Monday: $3 Blue Moon pints Take-Out Options? Yes. Buy any large pizza, get a Mama Grotto for $9 To-Go Cocktails? No




GAME-TIME D LA PIZZERIA METRO 3101 Miller Rd, Wilmington, DE 19802

LaPizzeriaMetro.com Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 2 NFL Sunday Ticket? No Beers on Tap: Variety Bottled Beers: Variety Crowd Favorites (Food): Wood Fired Pizza, Oven Roasted Wings Game Specials: Any Two Pizzas, Two Small Plates and a Pitcher of Beer $45.00. Available for dinein. -Any two Pizzas, Two Small Plates and Two Bottled Soft Drinks $45.00. Available for dine-in or take-out. Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes

MCGLYNNS PUB POLLY DRUMMOND 8 Polly Drummond Shopping Center, Newark, DE 19711

McGlynnsPub.com online ordering available Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 27 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 19 Bottled Beers: 33 / 5 Cans Crowd Favorites (Food): Wings, Nachos Game Specials: Available durning all football games $9 Wings, $9 Nachos, $7 Tator Tots, $6 Personal Pitchers of Miller Lite and Yuengling, $8 Personal Pitchers of Blue Moon Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes

MCGLYNNS PUB PEOPLES PLAZA 108 Peoples Plaza, Newark, DE 19702

McGlynnsPub.com online ordering available

Delaware & Maryland locations only.



Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 28 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 26 Bottled Beers: 41 / 11 Cans Crowd Favorites (Food): Wings, Nachos Game Specials: Available durning all football games $9 Wings, $9 Nachos, $7 Tator Tots, $6 Personal Pitchers of Miller Lite and Yuengling, $8 Personal Pitchers of Blue Moon Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes




Casapulla’s Steak & Sub Shop

“Home of the Classic Italian Sub” Offering:

TONIC SEAFOOD & STEAK 111 W 11th St, Wilmington, DE 19801

TonicSNS.com Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 9 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 16 Bottled Beers: 25+ Crowd Favorites (Food): Tailgate Teaser, Nachos Grande, Cheeseburger Sliders Game Specials: Sunday Touchdown Menu Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Yes




(302) 994-5934

1707 Delaware Ave, Wilmington, DE 19806

TrolleySquareOysterHouse.com Reservations Needed? No Number of TVs: 16 NFL Sunday Ticket? Yes Beers on Tap: 12 Bottled Beers: 25+ Crowd Favorites (Food): Crab grilled cheese, raw oysters, fried chicken club Game Specials: Special football menu and $6 crushes Take-Out Options? Yes, curbside To-Go Cocktails? Yes

VOTED BEST OF DELAWARE 2020! 9-Time Winner!

STITCH HOUSE BREWERY 829 N Market St, Wilmington, DE 19801

StitchHouseBrewery.com Reservations Needed? Suggested for large parties Number of TVs: 9 NFL Sunday Ticket? No Beers on Tap: See Website Bottled Beers: Seltzers, ciders and cocktails, but all beer is brewed on-premise: no bottles Crowd Favorites (Food): Burgers, sandwiches, and appetizers like fried cheese curds, buffalo cauliflower, cheesesteak egg rolls Game Specials: Happy Hour specials and Big Stitch Nick on special every Sunday; Sunday Brunch options until 3pm along with regular menu Take-Out Options? Yes To-Go Cocktails? Take-out crowlers, cocktails and wine

Join Us on the Riverfront for Authentic Thai Cuisine Vegan Options Available! 936 Justison Street, Wilmington, DE (302) 656-1706 • UbonThaiCuisine.com









Beer of

Brandywine Valley 7th Annual


October 12-22



irst released in 2010, this cider has become a seasonal tradition. It’s flavored with cinnamon, allspice and cloves and tastes like pumpkin pie. 5% ABV



fall tradition for Bell’s, their Best Brown Ale is brewed with American hops and is a smooth, toasty ale with hints of cocoa and caramel. It’s a nice middle-of-the road beer between lighter- bodied variations and malty stouts. 5.8 ABV




art of the brewery’s Off-Centered Art Series (featured artwork by Ryan Besch), Campfire Amplifier is a milk stout brewed with graham crackers, cinnamon, marshmallows, cocoa powder and vanilla beans. It’s targeted for a November release, but locally it could be available sooner. 6.5% ABV



rooklyn uses a touch of spices and pounds of real pumpkins to create a warm but surprisingly crisp spin on the traditional pumpkin ales originally made by American colonists. 5.0 % ABV

he Michigan-based brewer went all in on tradition with its Oktoberfest, using imported German malts and hops with a beautiful lager yeast for the finish. Pours an appealing copper hue with a rich, malty and slightly sweet backbone. Founders claims it’s akin to the beer poured in the early days of Oktoberfest and, yes, it adheres to the Reinheitsgebot. 6.0% ABV






his seasonal ale is brewed with cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg, and vanilla to emulate the flavors of a decadent, piquant pumpkin pie. Medium bodied with flavors of caramel and roasted pumpkin notes and an underpinning of floral hop bitterness that leads into a smooth blend of pumpkin pie spice. 8.8% ABV

special release, New Belgium’s goal with this brew was to position it between a classic Oktoberfest lager and a pumpkin ale. Atomic Pumpkin uses pumpkin juice cinnamon, clover and moderate chili pepper. It is one of the more unique beers of the fall season. 6.4% ABV



rewed as a counterpoint to Southern Tier’s popular imperial ale Pumking, Warlock is an imperial stout that tastes like pumpkin pie laced with coffee and dark chocolate. This full-bodied stout finishes smoother than the Pumking. 8.6% ABV



seasonal double IPA from the renowned West Coast brewery, this intense brew features more than 10 different hops and features a combination of hopping techniques to amplify its peach and tropical notes and overall hop factor. It is brewed specifically not to last, so the beer’s name has practical application. 9.4% ABV

State Line Liquors Family owned & operated Since 1933 — 4 Generations!

Great selection of...well... just about everything! —Yelp Over 3,000 Different Beers Growler Bar with 35 Taps Wine, Spirits & Beer Tastings Gourmet Food & Cheeses 1610 ELKTON RD, Route 279 . ELKTON, MD • WWW.STATELINELIQUORS.COM OUTSIDE MD. (800) 446-WINE, IN MARYLAND (410) 398-3838



traditional pumpkin ale with a Two Roads spin—it’s aged in rum barrels for added complexity and depth of flavor. The result is a smooth drinking ale with notes of pumpkin, spices, vanilla, oak and a touch of rum. 6.8% ABV



he Philly-based brewery celebrates Munich with a lightlyhopped, amber-colored Marzen lager. Available through October. 5.6% ABC OCTOBER 2020 | OUTANDABOUTNOW.COM




ayor Purzycki has launched Wilmington 311, a new telephone and online service intended to make the City more efficient and accurate as it quickly resolves issues for customers. Residents and businesses need only call 311 now to connect with a customer service rep who can assist them in reaching a City Dept., filing a service request, lodging a complaint, paying a bill, or requesting information. The 311 phone service is available from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Mon.-Fri. During off hours, customers can access the City’s 311 online page—www.WilmingtonDE.gov/311—available at the City website home page 24-7. No matter whether a customer calls 311 or uses the online form, they’ll get a case number to track an issue to completion.

Mayor Purzycki cautioned that 311 is NOT a substitute for calling 911, but is only for city government service requests, information, bill payment, and other non-emergency issues.


“Over the past year, we’ve made good progress in reducing the wait times for customers when they call for service,” said the Mayor. “Wilmington 311 should take us to another level of customer service because it’s designed to hold us accountable for tracking the calls and working as quickly as possible to resolve matters for our residents and businesses. I want Wilmington 311 to get us closer to providing excellent customer service at all times.” Mayor Purzycki cautioned that 311 is NOT a substitute for calling 911, but is only for city government service requests, information, bill payment, and other non-emergency issues. Wilmington 311 is another innovation adopted by the Purzycki Administration to improve the functions of City government, keep the public informed, make it easier for constituents to interact with City departments, and encourage citizen participation. Other programs introduced in recent years include the Park Mobile street parking and payment app; CompStat, a statistical performance and accountability process introduced by Chief Robert Tracy for the WPD; CitiStat, a similar process used by other City government departments to improve performance; and OpenGov, an online presentation of city government budgetary and programmatic information.


Photo credit Saquan Stimpson Part 107 certified drone pilot



ayor Purzycki commemorated the 100th Anniversary of the Negro Major Leagues and The Judy Johnson Memorial Foundation with

a Proclamation in September that’s included as part of a special exhibit at the Christina Cultural Arts Center’s Edward R. Loper Sr. Gallery, 705 N. Market St., entitled “The 100th Anniversary of The Negro Leagues Featuring Judy Johnson­—

Delaware’s Local Hero.” The exhibit, which opened Sept. 14, runs through Fri., Oct. 30, 2020 (see full story page 26).



he City of Wilmington opened in August a communitydesigned and executed cultural street art program organized by community activist and artist Vanity Constance and managed by City Cultural Affairs Director Tina Betz. The first of a series of cultural street art installations is now in place at the King St. entrance to Peter Spencer Plaza downtown. “This new art program is a community expression that comes from people’s feelings about the current state of racial justice and racial relations,” said Mayor Purzycki. “This effort has the wholehearted endorsement of City government because it is also about supporting better things to come for all of us who live in, work in, and visit Wilmington. Both the Executive and Legislative Branches of government embrace the colors, images, themes, and individual artistic efforts of this program and we thank Vanity and all of the participating artists for helping us to learn and heal.” Other art installation sites are coming soon.

Mayor Purzycki joins Vanity Constance and her team at the King St. entrance to Peter Spencer Plaza.

A stature of Wilmington’s Judy Johnson greets fans as they enter Judy Johnson Field at Frawley Stadium on the city’s Riverfront.




SUPPORT OUR COMMUNITY! During this difficult time, there are numerous options on the Riverfront to get out, enjoy nature, and dine from some of your favorite restaurants! The Riverfront is a perfect venue to enjoy the outdoors and walk our 1.75 mile Riverwalk along the beautiful Christina River! Additionally, the DuPont Environmental Education Center is now open to the public. DEEC’s nature trails, including the eight-mile Jack A. Markell Trail continues to be fully operational! Get out and enjoy some quality time in nature!


EVENT RENTALS LOOKING FOR THE PERFECT VENUE FOR YOUR OUTDOOR WEDDING CEREMONY? Riverfront Wilmington has several options for a small, socially-distanced gathering all with a beautiful backdrop of the river!

DINING OPTIONS Riverfront Restaurants and the Riverfront Market are open for in-house indoor and outdoor dining Banks Seafood Kitchen & Raw Bar Big Fish Grill Ciro Food & Drink Cosi Del Pez Docklands Drop Squad Kitchen Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant Riverfront Bakery River Rock Kitchen Starbucks The Juice Joint



Timothy’s on the Riverfront Ubon Thai



FOR KIDS! HOME WITH LITTLE ONES? The Delaware Children’s Museum will be posting at-home children’s activities on their Facebook page until they re-open! Just search Delaware Children’s Museum on Facebook!






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