The Freeman Arts Pavilion is marking its 15th year with big sounds — and bigger plans

By Bill Newcott
Photograph by Butch Comegys
From the August 2022 issue


Asked to recall the earliest days of the Freeman Arts Pavilion in Selbyville, orchestral percussionist Dane Krich hears crickets. No, not the “I can’t think of anything to say” kind  of crickets. He’s thinking real, chirping crickets.

“This was when the Freeman Stage was just a wooden platform, over by that pond,” Krich says, indicating the squared-off body of water that lies between the Freeman and a bank of four-story condominiums.

“We were playing, and all of a sudden there was this enormous chorus of crickets coming from the pond. It was crazy. You could hear them over the orchestra. Finally, the maestro, Julien Benichou, leaned over in that direction and yelled, ‘You’re chirping out of tune!’” 


When summer traffic crawls, the Civil Air Patrol soars

By Bill Newcott
Photograph by Bill Newcott
From the August 2022 issue


The good news is there’s surprisingly little traffic on Route 1 heading down from Dover this afternoon, especially considering this is Friday before a long holiday weekend. From my back seat in this Cessna 182T, I can see that even the gauntlet of traffic lights in Dewey Beach — I call it the Bottle & Cork Bottleneck — is flowing freely. 

The less good news is this givesmy flying companions very little to report to the Delaware Department of Transportation. Ostensibly, the reason we’re up here, making a lazy, 30-mile-long loop up and down the Delaware coast, is to help DelDOT keep track of the expected holiday backups. 

But pilot Bill Trussell doesn’t seem to mind the absence of snarls down there, and neither does his co-pilot, Phil Schlosser. The most important thing to them, it’s easy to see, is that they are up here, taking in the vista of green land, sinuous waterways and blue sea.

Jimmie Allen’s hometown formed the heart of his musical success

By Bill Newcott
Photograph by Dan Cook
From the July 2022 issue


“Daddy, don’t you worry,” country star Jimmie Allen sang at this year’s Grammy Awards show, “’Causeeverything’s good … down home.”

For his millions of ardent fans, “Down Home” — the first single from his new album, “Tulip Drive” — is just the latest in a long string of hit songs from Allen; a procession of tunes that tap into the grand traditions of country music, from pickup trucks on dusty roads to grits bubbling on a rustic kitchen stovetop. 

But for those who remember Allen growing up in Milton, the song conjures up images of the youngster heading out on a boat with his dad to drop a line into the Lewes-and-Rehoboth Canal, or motoring out to Indian River Bay and the Atlantic beyond.