Beatrix Jerkins (left) CEO at Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Atlantic & Cape May Counties delivered a talk entitled: “Changing Perspectives, Changing Lives” at a recent Exchange Club of Ocean City meeting. Exchange Club President, Bill Culp, introduced the speaker.Beatrix Jerkins, CEO at Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Atlantic and Cape May Counties, presented an informational program to the Exchange Club of Ocean City during a recent weekly dinner meeting at Clancy’s By The Bay restaurant in Somers Point.Titled “Changing Perspectives, Changing Lives,” Ms. Jerkins’ talk explained how Big Brothers/Big Sisters has become the nation’s largest donor and volunteer supported mentoring network by matching adult volunteers and children ages 6 through 18.The Exchange Club of Ocean City supports organizations such as the Big Brothers/Big Sisters through its emphasis on causes involving children, community and country.More information regarding the Big Brothers/Big Sisters can be found at its website:http://www.bbbsatlanticcape.org/site/c.9sIRI7NIKdKYF/b.6457951/k.EEFD/Home_Page.htm
By Maddy VitaleOcean City Mayor Jay Gillian and a crowd of supporters headed into the City Clerk’s office Wednesday morning, where he handed in his nominating petitions for the May 8 municipal election. The mayor was accompanied by his wife Michele Gillian, executive director of the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, their children, members of City Council, and others who came out to show support.Gillian is seeking his third, four-year term. Former Councilman John Flood turned in his petitions Monday to challenge Gillian for top post. The mayor, who took office in 2010, told a packed room in City Hall, that he is grateful to those who have stood by him in his efforts to keep the city going in the right direction. Mayor Jay Gillian with his wife Michele and their children Emily Gillian, Josh Gillian, Patrick Berenato and Mimi Cottrell.“Guys, I couldn’t have done it without you these last eight years,” Gillian said. “Thank you.”Since taking office, Gillian has implemented numerous capital projects, including repairs and improvements to sidewalks and roads. The Boardwalk was reconstructed during Gillian’s tenure and several drainage projects to reduce coastal flooding were completed, while others are underway. Dredging shallow back bays has also been one of his major projects. Another one of his priorities is renovating or replacing the public safety building, he has said.Mayor Jay Gillian with Councilman Bob Barr in front. From left; Councilwoman Karen Bergman, Council President Pete Madden, Councilman Keith Hartzell and Councilman Tony Wilson.“To me, it all started with unity in the community. I wanted everyone to work together through good times and bad,” Gillian, 53, said in an interview after he handed in his petitions. “We have spent eight years rebuilding the infrastructure of our town. I could not do it without the support of the community.”The mayor said it comes down to a love for Ocean City and a good work ethic.“I’m not a politician. I’m a statesman,” Gillian remarked. “I believe in hard work. That is how I was raised.” Gillian is the owner of his family’s Boardwalk amusement business, Gillian’s Wonderland Pier, which was started by his grandfather, David, in 1929. He got into public service through his father, Roy Gillian, a former Ocean City mayor.Flood, Gillian’s challenger, was on Council from 1988 to 1996. In 2011 he filled an unexpired term of then Councilwoman Susan Sheppard after she was elected to the Cape May County Board of Freeholders. She is now a Superior Court judge.Flood, 65, is a lifelong Ocean City resident, who owns commercial properties in the resort. He said in a press release earlier this week, that he spoke with concerned citizens who want to see more open and accessible government. He said that inspired him to run for mayor.In addition to the mayoral race, the election will include three at-large City Council seats. Incumbents Peter Madden, Karen Bergman and Keith Hartzell are seeking re-election. They turned in their petitions previously, according to the City Clerk’s Office.No other Council candidates have announced as of Wednesday afternoon.Candidates have until March 5 to submit their nominating petitions. Petitions must be signed by a minimum of 1 percent of the city’s 9,270 registered voters for candidates to have their names placed on the ballot.Mayor Jay Gillian with wife Michele Gillian, says if re-elected he would continue to work to improve the city’s infrastructure and keep Ocean City going in the right direction.
Industry experts tell British Baker what the royal couple’s unconventional celebration cake choice could spell for future baking trends and wedding cakes.Regal twosome Harry and Meghan have eschewed royal tradition and picked a delicately arranged lemon elderflower cake for their upcoming May wedding. A multi-tiered fruit cake has been the British monarchy standard for the past few centuries, so that even when chocolate digestive fanatic Prince William opted for a McVitie’s ‘groom’s cake’ at the last royal nuptials, it was presented alongside a fruit cake.Baker Claire Ptak – of Hackney store the Violet Bakery – was asked by the royal couple to craft a cake incorporating “the bright flavours of spring”. Ptak opted for an organic lemon elderflower cake, covered in buttercream, crowned with icing pearls and adorned with fresh flowers.Here, industry experts give their insights on the upcoming cake, and how the royal couple’s unusual choice will affect baking business trends over the next few months.John Slattery, Slattery Patisserie and Chocolatier, Manchester“Any royal wedding gives the creative bakery sector an opportunity to make some wedding-related products that will sell. Lemon elderflower cake flavour is ‘on trend’ and we expect to see people asking for it, making the flavour combination very popular this year. The organic style is also in demand with a certain sector of the market, and looks likely to grow in popularity.”Cristiana Ballarini, category marketing director, CSM “Harry and Meghan’s cake is an indication that their wedding is going to bend traditions and follow modern trends.“We’ve already forecast botanicals and floral decorations as big trends for this year. Lemon is a classically popular flavour in baking that has seen a resurgence in recent years, and elderflower is seeing huge growth. Both are seasonal and fit perfectly with a spring wedding. While these two flavours are growing in popularity, both individually and as a pairing in their own right, we expect the royal announcement to assist this growth. “While there may not be a huge demand for specific replicas of the celebration cake, there is likely to be a peak of interest in the flavours and styling. Bakers can take advantage of this interest by offering miniature versions of the cake: cupcakes, traybakes, biscuits or doughnuts. Selling these in the run-up to the wedding for parties is a great way to give consumers a little taste of the royal cake in their very own homes. “We’re seeing a rise in more sponge cakes being used for weddings, including Victoria sponge and lemon. In terms of décor, there is an increase in demand for naked or semi-naked sponges, drip cakes, and a substitute of royal icing in favour of buttercream or frosting. “Harry and Megan themed treats will be on the rise in May as the country goes royal wedding mad – from red-haired cupcakes, to American-themed treats and doughnuts and Union Jack designs.”Jacqui Passmore, marketing manager, Dawn Foods “‘Naked’ cakes with a swish of buttercream are popular with today’s brides. Botanicals and fresh citrus flavours are bang on trend too across the complete bakery category. It’s all part of a big move towards more natural products as well as nostalgia in bakery – we really want to see and taste what we are eating, but also remember flavours of the past such as elderflower or lavender.“According to Charles Spence, professor of experimental psychology at Oxford University, –who has partnered with Dawn Foods on a number of trends pieces – a bakery masterpiece should combine all the senses: sight, smell, taste and sound. All of those would be ticked with the royal wedding cake!”Ann-Marie Dunne, bakery lecturer, Dublin Institute of Technology“Organic-style wedding cakes are already becoming popular, but are not to everyone’s liking. People always take a look at anything different, and this royal couple are going out of the comfort zone of traditional royalty. It will be interesting to watch the reaction, as normally the royal wedding cake comes with a wow factor, and see whether an organic-style cake can achieve the same reaction. It’ll be a real wait-and-see moment!“The royal wedding cake reflects current trends; the naked cake finish has become very popular with organic-style cake, and is very stripped back from the traditional, often very ornate, wedding cakes. Natural flavours play a major part in these organic-style wedding cakes, which now include vegan/gluten-free layers to suit trending diets. However, it’s not to everyone’s liking. There will always be a need for traditional wedding cakes“Elderflower alongside lavender flavours have already become popular to a niche market, but don’t suit everyone’s palate. Some will love or loathe it. Lemon, however, has always been popular and always will – people never tire of the freshness of lemon. The new flavours just give customers new alternatives.“I don’t think cake-makers can expect to be making lemon elderflower cake en masse, but it will certainly be a new product line alongside the already popular flavours such as chocolate, lemon, orange, red velvet, carrot, fruit and chocolate biscuit etc. It will be a trending flavour, which will become another choice for clients. “Whether or not the royal wedding cake sets a trend will depend on how the finished cake looks, as it may not be to everyone’s liking.”
Video director Bulldog Media’s Joe W. speaks more in-depth about the band’s decision to shoot in this style. “I came up with the idea after listening to the song a few times. I’ve always wanted to do a 1950’s era video and thought this song would be a good fit. The lyrics “Old Country Road” made me think about the roads surrounding where I grew up in Sonoma County. We ended up shooting the film outside of Petaluma, CA, about 30 minutes from my home town. It was the perfect setting to match my vision for the video.”The song itself was written by Woodruff, and the first-ever song recorded at the band’s Ruffwood Studios in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Built by Woodruff himself, creating a workspace was influential on the album’s direction. “The process of building a studio from scratch in the mountains, surrounded by Redwood trees, yet 15 minutes from the beach, really framed the concept and direction of the album.”Stick Figure is on tour throughout March and the majority of 2016, so don’t miss the group on the road! For more information, click onto their website. California-based roots rockers Stick Figure always bring a good time wherever they go. Known for their soulful takes on the reggae genre, Stick Figure released their 2015 album Set In Stone to critical acclaim. You can listen to the album here.Now, the band is expanding on the artistic direction of Set In Stone with a brand new music video for the single, “Shadow.” Written about Cocoa The Dog, who frontman Scott Woodruff calls “my sidekick, my shadow,” the new video was shot in a retro 50’s style. Woodruff speaks fondly of Cocoa, saying that she “is essentially a member of the band. She is on stage every night, walking the perimeter and greeting the fans. She also gets first pick on choosing her bunk on the bus!”Enjoy the new music video for “Shadow” below:
Last week, Pretty Lights stunned fans with his announcement of a new direction, emphasizing more live band work with a new song called “Only Yesterday” featuring members of Lettuce, Break Science and more. Naturally, what does one do when they want a heavy dose of live music? Visit New Orleans, of course.That’s where Pretty Lights and the Analog Future Band found themselves last night, as they headlined the BUKU Music & Arts Festival. Not only did PL headline with the band, but he was scheduled to perform at the Joy Theater for a late night party featuring the Preservation Hall Jazz Band Horns.An additional secret after party took place on the streets of NOLA, as Pretty Lights shared the above photo with the caption “PLay a secret set in NOLA .” Fans could not have been happier to witness this intimate, late-night dance party.Check out some fan-shot footage of the secret set, courtesy of Cy Desormeaux on YouTube:The fans couldn’t have been happier.I just witnessed a secret pretty lights set in New Orleans and just met datsik. my life cannot be better.— Gaby Hidalgo (@gabyhidalg0) March 13, 2016Some enamored reactions from around the web:3 @PrettyLights sets in one night…and one of them under a bridge in New Orleans. Wow. Thank you Buku. pic.twitter.com/MjY8iZ40v7— Pal-Jacik (@Blaking_Bad) March 13, 2016 This is how close I was to @PrettyLights last night at the secret set. Unbelievable. pic.twitter.com/yTX8QVByGV— Nas Kabbani (@anaskabbani10) March 13, 2016Keep on rocking it, PL Fam.
In times of great social conflict, artists often rise to the occasion and express their unrest through art, song, and more. Music has been a popular medium for protest throughout the years, but perhaps never as strongly as that of the 1960’s counterculture movement. With America in the midst of the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement, the music of the 1960’s strongly represented the sentiments of social justice.As President-elect Donald Trump is set to take office, many are fearing a new era of unjust social policies from the White House. Singer/songwriter Neil Young, an activist since the 1960’s, recently spoke about the parallels between then and now. “This time is very similar to the ’60s, as far as I can tell,” he said in an interview with Mother Jones. “The artists always reflect the times, so there’s a lot to think about, a lot of unknowns, a lot of things that are describable. This is the closest I’ve seen to the kind of ambience that made the ’60s happen. It’s not about the artist having a responsibility to do anything. They have to be artists and express themselves and everything will work out fine. It’s all going to be great. The youth of this country are not behind what is going on. We all know that. If you looked at a [political] map of the United States 25 and under, it’s all-revealing. It’s a unified map.”Though Neil Young is concerned about the troubling times, it’s also nice to see him so optimistic about the youth of this country. He continues talking about the way people will be connecting with one another, saying, “We had the Vietnam War in the ’60s, and there was a draft. The students didn’t believe in it, and it unified them. That brought the people together and made the ’60s like they were. The youth were very unified against the status quo—against the old line and the new old line. It’s the same exact thing today. Social media and young people, art, music, all communications make this one of the most active times for activism. It will be a time of change.”Let’s hope that Young is right, and more artists will usher in this time of change in the years to come.
Baker’s Half Dozen – Episode 2: Will Autonomous Vehicles Take Our Jobs? Or Strengthen the Human-Machine Partnership?
Episode 2 of Baker’s Half Dozen is upon us. This month Matt answers:Is it the hardware driving AI acceleration, or do we need to write better code?Will autonomous vehicles take our jobs or strengthen human-machine partnerships?Are mid-course dividends worth the cost of failed innovation?If you’ve got questions about this episode, or a question you’d like Matt to answer in the next episode, comment below or tweet @mattwbaker using #BakersHalfDozen.Episode 2 Show Notes:Introduction with Matt BakerItem 1 – Self-Driving Threatening DriversWSJ: Self-Driving Technology Threatens 300,000 Trucking JobsItem 2 – AV Solution DifficultiesElon Musk: Generalized AV capabilities will be difficult in the near termGartner Hype CycleLane KeepingRadar-based Cruise ControlItem 3 – 3 V’s of Big DataItem 4 – AI without GPUsWu Feng VTItem 5 – AWS/VMWareItem 6 – UT TACC FronteraTACC Frontera to Push the Frontiers of ScienceItem 6.5 – Deploying OpenStackCloseDisagree with Matt using #BakersHalfDozenAlso, agree with Matt using #BakersHalfDozen
The Vermont Farm Viability Program announced today the award of $95,000 in grants and $62,700 in technical assistance awards to Vermont farmers to assist them in implementing their farm business plans completed through the program. In this latest round of funding, 21 farmers around the state received grants ranging from $650 to $7,000. An additional 21 farmers received technical assistance awards ranging from $700 to $4,000 to cover the cost of consulting with specialists. Among the implementation grants presented:Manchester Center – At Earth Sky Time Community Farm, Oliver and Bonnie Levis grow vegetables and orchard fruits and run a commercial kitchen to make value-added products such as breads, spreads, pickles, and a new product, the VT Goldburger, a veggie burger made with Vermont produce. Following completion of their business plan in 2009, Oliver and Bonnie applied for a Farm Viability Implementation Grant in November 2010 to upgrade their farmstand and to purchase veggie burger production equipment. They were awarded $7,000 towards a total project cost of $20,000. After purchasing the equipment, Oliver said, ‘Though we have been making VT Goldburgers in our farm kitchen for several years, we had neither the equipment we needed to ramp up production or a clear understanding of what the veggie burgers cost us to make. The Farm Viability Program helped us get a handle on the finances of the project, and the grant funding for equipment purchase made our regional product launch a reality. We are thrilled that VT Goldburgers are now available in 15 natural food co-ops in Vermont, New York and Massachusetts. Thanks to this program we are utilizing thousands of pounds of organic VT grown produce and supporting our farm with year-round income.’Hinesburg – Linsday Harris and Evan Reiss own The Family Cow Farmstand, a small grass-based dairy farm. They sell state-certified raw milk directly to customers from their farmstand and by delivery. Lindsay and Evan started Family Cow in 2008. They wrote a business plan through the Farm Viability Program in 2010. They applied for an Implementation Grant in November 2010 to renovate their milk room and improve the milk handling system. They were awarded $4,000 in February towards the $8,676 project, quickly set to work, and completed the project in April. The grant helped to fund a new sink, bulk tank, dishwasher, floor, and washable ceiling. Lindsay said of the renovations, ‘We are really happy with how our project came out. It has already made our day-to-day farming operation a lot safer, easier and cleaner.’Three of the farmers receiving technical assistance awards to work with specialists were: Ray Shatney and Janet Steward (Greenfield Highland Beef, Plainfield and Greensboro Bend) received an award to cover development of promotion materials for the farm and consultation on their watering system;Reynolds and Celia Hackett (Hackett’s Orchard, South Hero) will receive consulting on the intergenerational transfer of their orchard;An award to Jeremy Michaud (Clair-A-Den Farm, East Hardwick) will cover the costs of construction engineering for a new on-farm value-added processing facility, Kingdom Creamery of Vermont. The Farm Viability Program accepts applications for business planning assistance quarterly. To request an application, call 802 828 3370 or see www.vhcb.org/viability.html(link is external). Farmers who complete business plans with the program are eligible to apply for implementation grants to help with capital expenses or additional technical support to launch new on-farm projects identified in the business planning process. The technical assistance awards pay for consultants to work one-on-one with farmers to further the goals of the business plan, such as meeting with crop or animal health specialists, planning for new farm enterprises, estate or farm transfer, or to develop ideas for value-added processing, for instance. There is a $75 fee to enroll in the Vermont Farm Viability Enhancement Program. Aside from this enrollment fee, business planning and technical assistance services are provided free of charge if your farm is chosen to participate. The Farm Viability Enhancement Program is funded by the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board in collaboration with the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets, with funding assistance provided by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), USDA Rural Development and private foundations, including the John Merck Fund. In addition to private consultants contracting with the program, consultants are provided by the University of Vermont, the Intervale Center, and NOFA-VT. More than 350 Vermont farmers have used the services of the Farm Viability Program since it was established in 2003.
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Marine fuel logistics company Aegean Marine Petroleum Network has decided to exit the Singapore market as a physical supplier as of January 2018, after almost 11 years, amid pressure from competition.However, the company said that it would keep a trading presence in the Singapore market by continuing to employ a team of traders and support staff who will support its clients in the market.The company would use its office in Singapore as a base of Asian customers for its global physical supply network as well as handling back-to-back bunker trading and lubricants business in Singapore and South-East Asia. “The bunkering market in general, and the Singapore market in particular, are extremely competitive. We had hoped that enforcement of mandatory mass flow meter (MFM)-equipped bunker barging in January would have driven commercial improvement in the Singapore market allowing Aegean to compete profitably. “However, 2017 has seen heightened commercial pressures in Singapore, and as a result, management has determined that Aegean’s resources can be more profitably deployed elsewhere,” Aegean’s President Jonathan McIlroy commented.The marine fuels provider said that it was in the process of arranging its withdrawal from the physical supply market in Singapore in conjunction with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and its barging and cargo partners in the market.“All deliveries and contracts that we have booked with clients’ vessels, cargo providers and barge contractors will be fulfilled,” McIlroy emphasized.Aegean is working on the development of new physical supply stations, expected to debut over the course of 2018, in addition to its most recent expansions in Algoa Bay (South Africa) in 2016, and Savannah (U.S.) and St Croix (U.S. Virgin Islands) in 2017.