Kurt Delker found a unique way to spend time with his family and see a part of America this summer.
He went bicycling across Iowa with his 82-year-old father and 15-year-old son as part of the RAGBRAI (the Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) July 22-28.
The three were among nearly 10,000 riders who took part in the annual seven-day bicycle ride that is the oldest, largest and longest bicycle touring event in the world.
Cyclists follow a route that changes every year and averages 468 miles over terrain that is not always flat. The ride, which celebrates its 40th year this summer, begins near Iowa's western border on the Missouri River and ends along the eastern border on the Mississippi River.
To prepare to ride an average of 67 miles a day through the Iowa countryside, Kurt and son Zach hit the bike trail aroundBaltimore-Washington International Airportevery chance they could.
Father Mel is always prepared, having ridden in the race for 21 years!
Cyclists camp out each night and enjoy the hospitality of towns along the route with dinner served by local churches, Boy Scout or Girl Scout troops, 4-H clubs, and VFW post volunteers.
Camping provides its own unique challenges.
"Had a big storm blow through last night, 71 mph winds and got evacuated to the local shelter around 9:00," Kurt wrote in an email dated July 26.
"Got back to our tents around 11:00. My tent was collapsed with about 3 inches of water, Zach's tent had a couple and we picked Dad's tent up to drain the water out. Got everything mopped up and slept in a soggy tent for a few hours before starting the day. Have 87 miles today but at least it will be about 10 degrees cooler. Set a record of 106 yesterday with the temp on the road being 112."
Brady Wiggins, 20, is spending his summer traveling with Julio Iglesias World Tour and having the time of his life.
A DJ/producer/electronic music solo artist, he has been to Beirut, Monaco and Canada in addition to several stops in the United States.
The 2010 Catonsville High grad, now a music student at theUniversity of Maryland, Baltimore County, also composes electronic music.
Olivia Nicolaus, the valedictorian for Catonsville High's Class of 2012, went to London last month after three days in Chapel Hill for freshman orientation at the University of North Carolina.
She was joined by 24 fellow freshmen from the Honors Program at UNC and four professor chaperons for a week of fun in England.
"I learned about plant genomics in Kew Gardens, touredSotheby'sart gallery, and saw Henry V in the Globe Theater. We also drank lots of tea and rode the London Eye (a sightseeing wheel 135 meters high that can carry up to 800 passengers in 32 capsules rotating at a speed of .6 mph, according to its website), as well as checking out the major tourist attractions," she said.
Speaking of London, recent Catonsville High School graduates Clay McCoy, Duncan Berry and Kevin Jackson are in London this week visiting Clay's aunt and checking out the Olympics.
They plan to see the women's soccer, beach volleyball and women's basketball competitions.
Jamie Dubyoski is enjoying plebe summer at the Naval Academy.
The Oak Forest resident, a 2012 graduate of Loyola Blakefield, starts his day with a 6 a.m. workout joined by his 1,200 classmates.
A member of the Navy soccer team, he is preparing for his first collegiate game August 25 at Old Dominion.
Closer to home
Hannah Pennisi and her friend, Chloe McCaw, will be hosting a lemonade stand Saturday, Aug. 4, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to benefit both the Maryland Council for Special Equestrians and the Johns Hopkins Children's Center.
Hot dogs will also be for sale at the stand you're invited to visit at 2206 Pleasant Drive, near Westchester Elementary School.
Hannah has run a lemonade stand for about the past six summers and always appreciates the community's involvement and generosity.
Maggie Lacourse, a sophomore at Mount de Sales Academy, is attending weekly classes at the National Electronics Museum in Linthincum (http://nationalelectronicsmuseum.org) with the hopes of getting her amateur radio license. If she passes a test in mid-August, she'll be able to make direct contact with the NASA Space Station ARRISS.
Unexpected expert assistance
Though high school football practice doesn't open until later this month, Catonsville High sophomore Garrett Wack may already have an edge on the competition for the kicker's spot on the Comet football team.
Garrett had brought his football and tee to the turf field on campus recently to practice by himself when he noticed a gentleman standing on the sidelines watching him.
It was former Ravens kicker Matt Stover, a member of the team's Ring of Honor who once kicked 36 consecutive field goals without a miss for the Ravens, who came over and introduced himself.
Stover, who has three children, was in Catonsville to pick up his son from a lacrosse camp at UMBC and had an hour to kill.
He drove by, noticed Garrett kicking on the turf and stopped by to introduce himself and offer some suggestions.
"At first, I thought it was a joke," said Garrett, who played soccer last fall and swims for Five Oaks Swimming Pool in the summer. "He gave me some pointers and helped me to focus on my arms during the kick."
Basketball, art and salsa
University of Maryland's basketball coach Mark Turgeon is among the special guests scheduled for the Leadership Through Athletics' annual coaching clinic on Sept. 29, 9:30 a.m. to noon.
For more information about the Saturday event, go to http://www.leadershipthroughathletics.org.
Tom Beck, chief curator and associate professor of art at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, recently wrote and published the book "Music of the Mind: Cliché Verre Photographs and Digital Imagery of Jaromir Stephany." He'll be sharing his book during the Friends of the Catonsville Library's Wine & Words event on October 19.
He said the book is about a former UMBC professor "who devoted more of his career than anyone else in the history of art to making the unusual photographs called clichés verre."
Stephany died in April, 2010.
He also taught art at the Maryland Institute College of Art and showed his work at the International Center for Photography in New York and the Baltimore Museum of Art, as well as UMBC.
"Traditional clichés verre photographs are made by covering a piece of glass with an opaque varnish and scratching lines through the varnish so that light will pass through them when the glass is contact printed onto photographic paper," Beck said. "The technique is a way of making multiple copies of drawings.
Beck said Stephany would draw on cleared film with ink, grease or whatever was on hand to create images that looked cosmic or alien. He was very interested in science fiction literature which affected the look of his images.
Those looking for salsa, jams and sauces with a unique taste should check out http://www.Piconetwork.net, where Gabriel Holden of Smithwood Avenue sells products made with fresh, local ingredients and no additives or preservatives.
If you prefer checking things out in person, stop by the Waverly Farmers Market on Saturdays in Baltimore City. The market is held on the parking lot at East 32nd and Barclay streets from 7 a.m. to noon weekly