The Daily Times from Salisbury, Maryland on August 7, 2016 · Page T48
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The Daily Times from Salisbury, Maryland · Page T48

Salisbury, Maryland
Issue Date:
Sunday, August 7, 2016
Page T48
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48|DELAWAREBEACHES.COMCOASTAL DELAWARE|SUNDAY,AUGUST7,2016 Often, some of the most consequential political events go relatively unnoticed. So it was recently with the passage by t he General Assembly of House Bill 383. This landmark piece of legislation d esignates maypole dancing, yes maypole dancing, as the official state dance of Delaware. Although it has proven d ifficult to determine whether Gov. Markell has signed off on this bill, it’s h ard to imagine him enraging Delawareans, especially those capable of v oting with their feet, by vetoing this much needed new law. W hile it may seem strange to some to have a state dance, the Maypole j oins a venerated group of other state symbols listed in the “State Seal, Song and Symbols” section of the Delaware Code. The entire section is a fine example of our tax dollars at work, and it is something that every Delaware s chool boy or girl ought to c ommit to memory in civics class. Did you know, for instance, that the official state soil is Greenwich loam, that the official state star is the Delaware D iamond (located in the constellation of Ursa Major, if you’re looking for i t), and that the official state macroinvertebrate (and we certainly need one) is the stonefly? What, you ask, is the off icial beverage of the First State? Why, that’s milk, much to the conster- n ation of our friends at Dogfish Head, 16 Mile, and Mispillion micro- b reweries, to say nothing of the Delaware Tourism Office with its highly tout- e d Beer, Wine and Spirits Trail. However, having milk a s the official state drink may help to explain why prime real estate in the plush 600 block of Pilottown Road, with its view of the scenic Lewes and Rehoboth Canal, is the site o f a Lewes Dairy distribution facility, and has remained so for decades despite an estimated land value of over $6 million. Recently, however, a “For Sale” sign has app eared on that property, signaling the end of an era, and possibly the demise of a state symbol. This sign undoubtedly has eral Assembly when it reconvenes will consider some type of libation to replace milk. B ut I digress. Return- i ng to HB 383, it may make sense for New Castle County, where maypole dancing is part of the annual Dover Days celebration. And rumor has it that following the Assem- b ly’s action, the business community in that county has spent much of the f irst half of the summer investing in cedar and birch futures. Like the Maltese Falcon, it’s the stuff that dreams, or at l east maypoles, are made of. Nonetheless, it doesn’t s eem to resonate with folks in these parts. With that in mind, I plan to con- t act my State Representative and urge her to support the introduction of a n ew state symbol with a more coastal emphasis. Why not create a new c ategory that recognizes our built environment, and designate the sand brought smiles to the faces of management at t he aforementioned breweries. They probably are waiting with baited breath, or at least parched throats, to see if the Gen- ABERGER BITE Maypole dancing: the newest state symbol MIEKE BERGER THE NEWS JOURNAL/GARY EMEIGH Students from Welch Elementary School performing the Maypole dance during the Dover Days celebration. SeeBERGER,Page49

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