Nanticoke Tribe celebrates its culture and history; other news

Nanticoke Tribe celebrates its culture and history; other news
A dancer at the Nanticoke Tribe's 2019 Heritage Day. Photo by Tonoa Harmon

Here's a look at news and events from around southern Delaware this week.

A glimpse of Native culture, past and present

Meet members of the Nanticoke Indian Tribe and learn more about southern Delaware’s original inhabitants at the tribe’s upcoming annual Heritage Day, one of a couple of events shining a light on the area's Native American residents.

The event is free and open to the public, and will be held at the Nanticoke Indian Museum in Millsboro on Saturday, May 7 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. It has all the ingredients of a good community party: Dancing, singing, storytelling and food.

Participants in the 2019 Heritage Day. Photo by Tonoa Harmon

The guest speaker is Iz Balleto, an indigenous Peruvian who is the community engagement specialist for the Delaware Art Museum, the tribe said on its Facebook page.

There will also be museum tours, a native flute performance, Native American vendors, food for sale and more. Donations will support future cultural events. For more information, email

Another upcoming event related to Nanticoke culture is the Chicone Village Day at the Handsell historic site near Vienna, Maryland. That takes place Saturday, April 30 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It’s near what was once an important Nanticoke village, and the site includes a replica longhouse and also a restored 1700s-era plantation house built by later colonists.

I covered a precursor to this event in 2013 as one of my first assignments for the Star Democrat in Easton, and I was impressed with the demonstrations of traditional Native skills like starting a fire the old fashioned way without matches, and making a dugout canoe using coals to hollow out a log.

The event is put on by the Nanticoke Historic Preservation Alliance, and includes artifact displays, a native drum demonstration, and living history demonstrations of cooking, weaving, making implements and gardening.

Admission is $5. The site is located at 4837 Indiantown Rd., Vienna.

Reminder: Seaford's election is Saturday

Seaford’s election for mayor and one Council seat is this Saturday, April 16 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. at city hall. The candidates are mayoral incumbent David Genshaw, running against Pat Jones, and incumbent Council member Matt MacCoy, running against Stacie Spicer. Hear from the candidates themselves in this Q&A we ran last month:

Meet the candidates in Seaford’s upcoming election
Seaford residents will get a chance to have their say in a few weeks in the city’s April 16 election, with current Mayor David Genshaw running against Pat Jones, and incumbent Council member Matt MacCoy running against Stacie Spicer. One big change this time around is that many more

The voter registration deadline was March 26. The city reminded voters they will need to show proof of residency or ownership of property within city limits on Saturday. Voters should go in the back door of city hall by the parking lot and election officials will show them where to go.

Go fly a kite

The 51st Great Delaware Kite Festival is Friday at Cape Henlopen State Park.

There are kite-flying competitions for kids and adults, including ballet (flying a kite to music), precision flying and the highest kite contest. The event also includes professional stunt kite flying demonstrations, and an Easter egg hunt at 11 a.m.

All activities are free, and kite competition registration begins at 10 a.m.

If you neglected to buy your kite this spring, they’ll be for sale on site.

Call 302-645-8073 or visit for more information.

Find out more about the polluted groundwater in Georgetown

As we previously noted, the Environmental Protection Agency has its eyes on a site in Georgetown where the groundwater is polluted by a dry-cleaning chemical called tetrachloroethylene, or PCE for short. Georgetown’s water is treated and according to the EPA it meets federal and state standards, but nevertheless the EPA is considering making the site a priority for cleanup.

Residents who want to find out about possible solutions and what the contamination means for their health can attend a question and answer session with EPA staff at the Georgetown Public Library on Wednesday, April 20 from 5:30-7 p.m.  

Southern Delaware men are still wanted on drug ring charges

Police are still looking for several men they say were involved in a large drug trafficking group in Delaware, including a Bridgeville-area man accused of being the ringleader.

State Police asked the public for help finding George Johnson, 40, of Bridgeville/Laurel, who is accused of leading the group. He faces racketeering and other charges. They are also looking for Allen White, 35, of Georgetown; Andre Washington, 27, of Seaford; and Semeion Reed, 21, of Georgetown.

More than 50 people have already been arrested in the crackdown. Police said the group was targeted because of an increase in overdoses and possession of heroin in Sussex County and Worcester County, Maryland. They pin four fatal overdoses in Delaware on the group, and two overdose deaths in Wicomico and Worcester counties.

Anyone with information on their location is asked to contact Delaware State Police Troop 4 at 302-856-5850, send a Facebook message to Delaware State Police, or contact Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333 or online.

Scammers target local concert venues

Delaware State Police say they’ve gotten multiple reports from people who bought fake tickets for local concerts. They said scammers are using phone prompts and websites that appear to be associated with concert venues to lure victims into paying for what they think are tickets.

WRDE TV reported that the venues included Hudson Fields, Bottle and Cork and the Freeman Arts Pavilion.

Those buying tickets should make sure they’re going through the official website.  

Bridgeville police chief gets a vote of confidence

Chief Burke Parker will continue his tenure in Bridgeville after the town Commission voted unanimously Monday to renew his contract for another five years. Parker started working for the town in 2002, and took over as acting chief in 2016 after the resignation of Chief Robert Longo.

Man killed in Laurel shooting

A 49-year-old Laurel man died in a shooting on Laurel Road, police announced last Saturday.

State police said they found Frank Pavlovic in the driveway of a home early Thursday morning, suffering from a gunshot wound to the upper body. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Investigators said two men robbed and shot Pavlovic, then forced an acquaintance of his to drive them away. Police have arrested a Denton man and a Millsboro man on charges of first degree murder and more.

A book club for teens and young adults

The Greenwood Library is holding a book club aimed at ages 16-20. The Club Bibliotheque After Hours will meet Tuesday, April 26 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. This month will feature a discussion of recent reads, and light snacks will be provided. (Parents should know that some book selections may contain mature content.) Register at the library’s website.

“Bibliotheque” is a fancy French word for library.

Food bank dates

The Food Bank of Delaware’s monthly mobile pantry returns Monday, April 18 at 10 a.m. at the motor speedway in Dover, and Monday, April 25 at 10 a.m. at Crossroad Community Church near Georgetown.

Register in advance here.

Dish of the week

By Edgar Diaz

Photo by Edgar Diaz

Roasted root veggies

If you’re tired of plain old salt and olive oil roasted veggies, then this recipe is for you! The nuts and brown butter add toasty and sweet notes, complemented by the fresh acidity and herbal flavors from the lemon and parsley.

Best of all, you can use this same basic formula with different veggies, nuts, herbs, and acids for endless flavor combinations and textures.

Basic method: roast your veggies as normal. Toast some nuts in butter until the butter is browned. Chop some herbs. When veggies are done roasting, toss it all together with a squeeze or two of lemon juice. Salt to taste. Enjoy!

Recipe inspiration from @creekmoremusic.

Follow Edgar Diaz on Instagram @diptoe

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