Maryland Fracking Ban To Become Law, With Nationwide Implications PDF Print E-mail
Written by Denise Robbins   
Wednesday, 29 March 2017 07:08

Senate passes bill with GOP governor support, following six years of grassroots resistance across the state of Maryland

ANNAPOLIS – With game-changing support from Republican Governor Larry Hogan, the Maryland state Senate Monday night gave final approval to a bill to forever ban the practice of fracking in Maryland. This move culminates years of protests against fracking for gas from landowners, health leaders, and environmentalists. It also sets a nationally significant precedent as other states grapple with the dangerous drilling method.

Maryland will now become the first state in America with proven gas reserves to ban fracking by legislative action. New York has banned the drilling process via executive order. Vermont has a statutory ban but the state has no frackable gas reserves at present.

The Maryland ban is sending political waves across the East Coast and the nation. From Virginia (where leaders have imposed or proposed local bans at the county and municipal level) to the state of Florida (which is looking to follow Maryland’s statewide ban), the “keep-it-in-the-ground” movement is gaining new bipartisan steam even as President Donald Trump recklessly works to approve disastrous pipelines like Keystone XL.

“Let the news go forth to Congress and the White House: fracking can never been done safely,” said Mike Tidwell, director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. “The Republican governor closest to DC – Larry Hogan of Maryland – has joined scientists and health leaders in agreeing that fracking must be banned. This is a win for Marylanders and for citizens nationwide as we move away from violent fossil fuels and toward sustainable wind and solar power.”

With Senate passage late Monday night, the Maryland bill will now be sent to Gov. Hogan’s desk in the next few days for signing.

The push to ban fracking in Maryland began six years ago as gas companies swarmed into western Maryland to tap the Marcellus Shale basin. This is the same pool of gas that has been widely fracked in Pennsylvania and West Virginia with negative consequences. But then-Governor Martin O’Malley (D) imposed a temporary moratorium before any drilling occurred. Over the years, the movement for a permanent ban came to include farmers, doctors, students, faith leaders, environmental groups, and others – constituting the largest statewide grassroots movement ever seen in Maryland on an energy issue. Former member of the House of Delegates Heather Mizeur was a leading figure in sparking the statewide ban effort. With time, multiple counties and cities in the state banned fracking locally and public polling consistently showed growing support for a statewide ban. Finally, earlier this month, with overwhelming support among Democratic lawmakers, even the previously pro-fracking Republican governor saw the wisdom of a ban.

The Chesapeake Climate Action Network has been honored to play a leading role in this campaign along with our friends in the Don’t Frack Maryland Coalition, including Food and Water Watch, Citizen Shale, Engage Mountain Maryland, the Sierra Club, the Maryland League of Conservation Voters, Physicians for Social Responsibility and many others.

The Maryland fracking ban bill also could not have succeeded without the extraordinary leadership of Kumar Barve (D-Montgomery County) and David Fraser-Hildago (D-Montgomery County) in the Maryland House of Delegates. The same must be said of Bobby Zirkin (D-Baltimore County) and Paul G. Pinsky (D-Prince George’s County) in the Maryland Senate. But Senator Zirkin, more than any other legislator, fought tirelessly for the fracking ban and refused to compromise on the road to this historic victory.

Allegany Allied Arts to Host "Film Lab" Speakers PDF Print E-mail
Written by David Rorabaugh   
Wednesday, 29 March 2017 07:05
Allegany Allied Arts, Inc., is pleased to continue a new collaboration between the Queen City Film Festival (QCFF) and The Movie Brewdio, "The Film Lab." "The Film Lab" is a monthly gathering bringing together film professionals, patrons, and fans. Each meeting features a guest speaker and may include a short screening block. Every first Monday* from 6-9pm (speaker at 7pm) at Oscar's Restaurant, 1103 E Oldtown Rd, Cumberland, Maryland 21502.
These are the dates for "The Film Lab" at Oscar's:
Monday, April 3, 2017
Monday, May 1, 2017
Monday, June 5, 2017
Monday, July 3, 2017
Monday, August 7, 2017
*TUESDAY, September 5, 2017
Monday, October 2, 2017
Monday, November 6, 2017
?Monday, Dececember 4, 2017
At our April 3rd gathering, Christopher Closson will discuss his first official documentary, "The Crystal Chalice Awards," which was completed in 2016, bringing awareness to the annual art and music award show hosted in Cumberland, MD.
Christopher “Selomon” Closson has been making videos his entire life. Though he was accepted to many different film schools, he ultimately decided to skip traditional education and learn through experience.
At our May 1st gathering, JW Myers of Route 40 Films will discuss film production, acting, and improvisation.
JW Myers grew up in Frostburg, graduated with a B.A. in Theater from Frostburg State University, and then spent the next two decades in New York and Los Angeles, writing, performing, and directing film and television. JW has produced and directed several feature films, including “The Pledge,” “A Christmas Tree Miracle,” “Special School,” and “Flamingo Dreams.” JW serves as Adjunct Faculty at Frostburg State University, teaching a class in Acting For the Camera. Locally, he also teaches Television Production for teens at MCCA (Mountain City Center for the Arts) in Frostburg, and “Improv with JW at Queen City Playhouse” in Cumberland. 
Allegany Allied Arts, Inc., can be reached by mail at 101 Decatur St., Cumberland, MD  21502. Please visit us at, or For more information, please contact
The Movie Brewdio can be reached by mail at 23 High St.
Frostburg, MD  21532. Please visit them at or For more information, please contact  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
Last Updated on Wednesday, 29 March 2017 07:18
GOP Governor Supports Fracking Ban in MD! CCAN Statement PDF Print E-mail
Written by Denise Robbins   
Friday, 17 March 2017 17:27

ANNAPOLIS, MD -- Today, Republican Governor Larry Hogan of Maryland yielded to overwhelming scientific data and voter support by giving his support to a statutory ban on hydraulic fracking for gas in the state. He made the announcement at a press conference joined by Maryland Senator Bobby Zirkin, the lead sponsor of Senate Bill 740. The bill would place a statewide ban on the drilling practice. Hogan’s announcement almost certainly assures that a fracking ban will become law in the state. The House of Delegates passed a fracking ban bill last week with bipartisan support, and the Senate could now do the same next week. Maryland would then become the first state in the country to ban fracking by statute.

Mike Tidwell, Executive Director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, stated:

"Governor Hogan's decision to support a permanent fracking ban in Maryland has created a day of historic importance for the entire nation. Hogan has joined a statewide bipartisan effort to prevent this dangerous drilling technology from ever polluting Maryland’s water, air, climate, and childhood health. In short, he has done the right thing. Most importantly, on climate change, Maryland is now poised to keep a dangerous pool of fossil fuels in the ground forever. Scientists say this is what states across America and countries around the world need to do to solve global warming. Instead of fracking, we need more solar energy. Instead of coal, we need wind power. Instead of oil, we need electric cars. Larry Hogan just took a big step for Maryland and the nation in moving us toward that goal."

CES to Present The Filharmonic PDF Print E-mail
Written by FSU News and Media Services   
Thursday, 16 March 2017 18:55

CES’ On the EDGE Series Presentation of The Filharmonic Rescheduled for April 20

Because of changes to the band’s tour schedule, CES at Frostburg State University will present the a cappella singing group The Filharmonic in an On the EDGE series performance on Thursday, April 20, at 8:15 p.m. in the Alice R. Manicur Assembly Hall of FSU’s Lane University Center. The concert was originally planned for Thursday, April 6.

On the EDGE tickets are $15 and may be ordered by calling 1-866-849-9237 or 301-687-3137 or by visiting

CES is supported by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. An agency of the Department of Business and Economic Development, MSAC provides financial support and technical assistance to nonprofit organizations, units of government, colleges and universities for arts activities. The CES 60th Anniversary season is supported in part by the city of Frostburg and the FSU Foundation.

Situated in the mountains of Allegany County, Frostburg State University is one of the 12 institutions of the University System of Maryland. FSU is a comprehensive, residential regional university and serves as an educational and cultural center for Western Maryland. For more information, visit or Follow FSU on Twitter @frostburgstate.

FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. To request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office, call 301-687-4102 or use a Voice Relay Operator at 1-800-735-2258.

Author to Participate in Discussion of Her New Novel at Main Street Books PDF Print E-mail
Written by Fred Powell   
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 16:40

RunawayMidwifePatricia Harman, author of The Runaway Midwife, will participate in the upcoming book discussion of her new novel at Main Street Books in Frostburg on Tuesday, March 21 at 7:30 pm.  Recently published by William Morrow, an imprint of  HarperCollins, Harman's new title is a fast-paced tale of a midwife on the run from a series of devistating events in her life.  Fleeing from West Virginia, she seeks solitude on a a remote island in Canada and tries to reinvent her life.

Harman is the author of four previous books, including The Midwife of Hope River and The Reluctant Midwife and two memoirs.  Earlier in the year, she published her first childrens book titled Lost on Hope Island: the Amazing Tale of the Little Goat Midwives.  Harman lives near Morgantown WV and is  recently retired from the field of midwifery after caring for woman and families for over 30 years.  This is the third visit Harman is making to Main Street Books to discuss her books.   The book group that has been meeting in the store since 1998.

For additional information call 301-689-5605 or e-mail  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  New members and area book groups are welcome to attend.

FSU - Nanhua University Form Partnership PDF Print E-mail
Written by FSU News and Media Services   
Wednesday, 29 March 2017 07:02

Agreement Between FSU and Nanhua University, Taiwan: Yuri Yao-Tsung Chih, right, director of the Education Division of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) in the United States presents Frostburg State University President Ronald Nowaczyk with a signed student and faculty exchange agreement between Nanhua University in Taiwan and Frostburg State. Future plans for the partnership involve the potential development of a cooperative degree, a student enrichment program, Chinese language training for FSU students and scholarship opportunities that will allow Frostburg students to study in Taiwan.

“TECRO looks forward to assisting the evolving relationship between Frostburg State University and Nanhua University,” Chih said. “Both of these institutions are committed to providing their students the very best in global education.”

“The Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office has strongly supported Frostburg State University’s presence in Taiwan over the years,” Nowaczyk said. “We look forward to our new and promising relationship with Nanhua University.

For more information, contact Dr. John Bowman, interim vice president for International and Government Affairs, at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  or 301-687-4111.

FSU’s Department of Music to Host the Lyra Ensemble PDF Print E-mail
Written by FSU News and Media Services   
Thursday, 16 March 2017 19:03

The Frostburg State University Department of Music will present the Lyra Ensemble as part of its Woodwind Quartet-a-Month series on Wednesday, March 29, at 7:30 p.m. in the Pealer Recital Hall of FSU’s Performing Arts Center. This event is free and open to the public.

Members of the ensemble are Dr. Kristin Bacchiocchi-Stewart, on flute, alto flute and piccolo; Ellen Fisher-Deerberg, on flute and bass flute; Anna Meyer, on flute and piccolo; and Dr. Elivi Varga, on flute.

The quartet will begin with “Sinfonia” from “The Marriage of Figaro” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. This will be followed by five modern pieces, beginning with “An Gaelic Tiodhlac” (“A Gaelic Offering”) by Catherine McMichael, which consists of four Gaelic pieces in traditional style – rowdy, raw and rambunctious when fast, and achingly personal when slow. The ensemble will then perform “Four ’Scapes” by Cynthia Folio, consisting of “Cityscape,” “Seascape,” “Landscape” and “Escape” and “Trois Pièces pour quatre Flûtes en Ut” by Eugène Bozza, a French contemporary composer and violinist and a prolific composer of chamber music for wind instruments.

After intermission, the group will continue with “Urban Ragas” by Till Maclvor Meyn, which is reminiscent of ragas, the scales and modes of Indian music; “Quatuor de Flûtes” by Jean-Michel Damase; and “Steeley Pause” by Jennifer Higdon.

Bacchiocchi-Stewart is the owner and founder of The Flute Academy in Bergen County, N.J. She is principal flute with the Ridgewood Concert Band. Bacchiocchi-Stewart has served on the faculties of Union College, Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, FSU, Ithaca College and Schenectady County Community College. She teaches for the Marina Piccinini International Summer Master Classes at Peabody each summer.

Fisher-Deerberg is a well-respected freelance artist in Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey and has performed in a wide variety of instrumental ensembles in the U.S. and Germany. She has taught flute for more than 28 years and has been on the faculty of Westminster Conservatory in Princeton, N.J., since 2005. Fisher-Deerberg is the principal flutist of the Bravura Philharmonic Orchestra.

Meyer recently took second place in the 2015 Myrna Brown Competition in Dallas and is currently a listed substitute for many regional orchestras, including the Delaware Symphony, Opera Philadelphia and the Allentown Symphony. She also maintains a private studio out of her home. She is a founding member of the Lyra Ensemble.

Varga performs as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestra member throughout the Philadelphia area. She teaches flute at Settlement Music School, Community College of Philadelphia and Friends’ Central School and maintains a private flute studio. Varga’s recently released CD, “Silver Tunes: Music for Flute and Organ,” includes world-premiere recordings of music by American composers Lowell Liebermann and Augusta Read Thomas. Her articles on music have appeared in The Philadelphia Inquirer and elsewhere.

For more information, contact FSU’s Department of Music at 301-687-4109 or visit

FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. To request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office, call 301-687-4102 or use a Voice Relay Operator at 1-800-735-2258.

Embassy St. Patrick's Day Show PDF Print E-mail
Written by Kara RogersThomas   
Thursday, 16 March 2017 18:40
CUMBERLAND, MD - Embassy Theatre will be celebrating St. Patrick's Day with its "St. Paddy's Day With the Fly Birds" on Friday, March 17
The theatre is located on the Downtown Cumberland Mall at 49 Baltimore Street, and the evening's music will include Ben Childs, Ally Norris and the Fly Birds.
Ben Childs is an 18 year old singer-songwriter from Frostburg, MD. His music covers a wide variety of genres, from hip-hop to folk. He often performs his original songs, drawing influence from artists like Ed Sheeran and Twenty One Pilots. He hopes that through his music, he will be able to connect to listeners' hearts and souls. 
Ally Norris is a 14 year old original singer-songwriter from Cresaptown, MD. Her influences are Lzzy Hale, Pat Benatar, Slash, Orianthi, Carrie Underwood, Paramore, Shinedown, Evanescence, and Led Zeppelin. She has several songs that she has written, and she will be showcasing some of these at events. Her songs have a rich, youthful glow enveloped in country, pop, and rock. Enjoy!
The Fly Birds are a trio made up of Elizabeth Baker and Mary Dunlap of Winchester, VA on Banjo and Bass and Sarah Twigg of Barton, MD on the guitar. Their unique vocals as well as original style of folk music is topped off with tasteful songwriting skills and a charming presence on stage and record. The band was formed in April 2016 and plan to release their first record in 2017.
Check them out on Facebook to learn more about upcoming music releases and shows in your area!
"Cover for this St. Paddy's Day musical event is $10, which supports these outstanding musicians and their talents, as well as supporting our nonprofit theatre," adds executive director Jerard Puckett. Valid ID required for admission.
Music begins at 7 pm and continues until 1 am. Passport Cafe will be open in the lobby.
All events at Embassy Theatre are supported in part by the Allegany County Arts Council and the City of Cumberland.
For more information, contact Embassy Theatre at (240) 362-7183, or visit embassytheatrecumberland on Facebook.


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