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Lauren Irby

Office: (302)-349-3132

Cell: (302)-258-3579



Co-op November 2015 News Briefs

College Students Visit Solar Farm: Students from the University of Pennsylvania learned about renewable energy from Delaware Electric Cooperative’s leaders in October. The University’s Wharton Undergraduate Energy Group visited DEC’s Bruce A. Henry Solar Farm in Georgetown on October 16th. Mark Nielson, DEC’s Vice President of Staff Services, talked with students about the process of building the farm and pointed out the electrical equipment found at the facility. The solar farm was built in 2013 and includes 20 acres of solar panels, capable of producing enough energy to power 500 homes.


Cookie Rookie: Pumpkin Pie Skillet Brownie

Ingredients: For the Pumpkin Pie topping: 4 ounces reduced fat cream cheese ¼ cup sugar Egg whites from 1 egg 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract ¾ cup canned pumpkin puree 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice For the Brownie Layer: ½ cup sugar Egg whites from 2 eggs 1 cup canned pumpkin puree 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract ½ cup canola oil 4 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled slightly 1 ¼ cup white whole-wheat flour ¼ cup cocoa powder ½ teaspoon baking soda ½ cup buttermilk ¼ teaspoon salt Instructions: 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a large cast iron skillet with non


Celebrate Fall at Fifer Orchards!

Fall has arrived, ushering in a season of cool, crisp air, colorful foliage and fun activities for you and your family! One of the largest fall events takes place at Fifer Orchards west of Wyoming in Kent County. Fifer’s Fall Fest runs through October 31st and will include you-pick apples, you-pick pumpkins, straw slides, zip swings and so much more. Visitors will be treated to a six-acre corn maze with trivia stations and an observation deck. On Saturdays, the orchard will feature live entertainment, hayrides, pony rides, face painting, bounces and community food vendors. Tickets are $5 for


Beware of Energy Vampires

Why don’t you try something a little different this Halloween? Turn off all the lights in your house and see if you can find the energy vampires that haunt your home! In a typical home, you’ll probably find lots of red and green lights once the lights go out. What those lights mean for your electric bill may scare you. Many electronics with red or green lights are always running in standby mode, which means they are always using power. We call these appliances and electronics energy vampires or phantom loads. They include TVs and DVRs, satellite boxes, gaming consoles, CD players, computers


Easy Roasted Veggies

Ingredients: 2 potatoes (I used Yukon Gold, but any kind will work!) 2 red peppers 1 red onion 1 cup brussels sprouts 3 sprigs asparagus 1 cup squash 4 garlic cloves, minced 6 tablespoons olive oil Salt and pepper Instructions: 1. Cut the veggies into medium sized pieces. You want bite sized pieces of everything. Preheat oven to 400F. 2. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray. Arrange veggies and garlic on baking tray. Some overlap is fine, but you want the vegetables to all touch the baking sheet if possible. 3. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 30


Recap of DEC's 2015 Annual Meeting

Your Cooperative held its 79th Annual Meeting on Tuesday, August 25th at the Delaware State Fairgrounds in Harrington. More than 5,000 people attended the event, which is the largest annual private gathering in southern Delaware. Members were treated to a free chicken dinner, live music, a community fair and an update on the state of Delaware Electric Cooperative. DEC’s President and CEO, Bill Andrew, addressed nearly 2,000 people during the business portion of the meeting, telling members that DEC remains in an excellent financial position, and barring any extreme weather events or new


Explore James Farm Ecological Preserve

Delaware is known for its beautiful beaches and wide variety of wildlife. Very few places display the vast number of habitats in Delaware like James Farm Ecological Preserve. James Farm, located on Cedar Neck Road in Ocean View, is overseen by The Delaware Center for Inland Bays. Throughout the year, it hosts numerous school groups and scout troops, and educates them about the ecosystems present in the area. The 150-acre tract of land was given to Sussex County by Mary Lighthipe, a descendent of the James family who had farmed the land for generations. The gift was in memory of her son, Harold


Keep Rates Low By Beating the Peak

“Beat the Peak” is a program created to help members become more energy aware and help keep their power bills low by reducing their energy usage during peak periods, when prices are at their highest. The two major factors that affect the price of electricity are the cost to generate it and the demand for power. The demand is highest on our system during the hot summer months between the peak period hours of 3 and 7 p.m. Electricity costs the most during this time. To combat the price spike, we ask members to conserve energy. This includes turning off extra lights or waiting to do laundry until


Q&A With Chef Ryan Cunningham of Abbott’s on Broad Creek

When you think about dining on the water, Laurel isn’t normally the first place that comes to mind. But Chef Ryan Cunningham is working hard to put Abbott’s on Broad Creek on the map. Located in downtown Laurel, the young restaurant has had a busy year-and-a-half since its opening in December of 2013. Abbott’s had already made a name for itself with Abbott’s Grill in Milford, but bringing people to a new location was a welcome challenge for Chef Ryan. Q: What do you think draws people to Abbott’s Grill? A: We take familiar things and put our own twist on them, and wow people that way. Once you


Outdoors Delmarva: The Quest For Black Drum

It’s a trip our WBOC crew has made many times out of Lewes Harbor Marina, on a spring mission to find black drum in the Delaware Bay. Just the thought of being able to haul in what could possibly be a 40-year-old fish, weighing close to 100 pounds, is enough to get your heart pumping with anticipation. Anyone who has had the privilege of winning a battle with a black drum knows that you will be thanking your heart for hanging on for what can seem like an endless battle. Captain Brian Wazlavek of the Li’l Angler 2 is taking us a little farther out in the bay than we’re used to. Instead of


Planting Seeds That Could Grow Into New Farmers

If you were to take a drive in Delaware, chances are you would pass a farm at some point along the way—if not more than one. Corn, soybeans, chickens, dairy cows, horses, even alpacas can be seen from roads all over the state. The agriculture industry plays a huge role in Delaware’s economy and way of life. You might be surprised by the number of people who don’t know much about how farmers help to put fresh, local food on our tables. The Delaware Farm Bureau Foundation is working to solve that problem. The Bureau launched the mobile Ag Lab in 2014, a trailer outfitted with information, tools


Dover’s Air Mobility Command Museum Leaves Visitors in Awe

Delaware is fondly known as the Small Wonder, a tiny state chock-full of surprises. Included in the wonders of the second smallest state is the Air Mobility Command Museum (AMC), which you’ll find along state Route 9 in Dover. If you’re a Delawarean and have never heard of the museum, you may be surprised by what you’ll find. As visitors drive up to the AMC museum, they’ll see more than two-dozen aircraft sitting outside a historic hangar—a sight that will leave both children and adults in awe. The museum houses 33 aircraft—everything from helicopters to fighter jets to an iconic and massive C


Be Prepared for the Next Big Storm

Life in Delaware is often beautiful and serene. But, when it comes to severe weather, being in a relatively flat state surrounded by water can be less than ideal. From hurricanes to tornadoes to nor’easters, Delaware is hit with severe storms every year. It’s important to have a plan in place long before the storm alerts, watches, and warnings are issued. Severe weather can strike anytime, anywhere. Make an emergency plan with your family and be sure to discuss the following: how you will get to a safe place; how you will contact one another; how you will get back together if separated; and


Seven Sister’s Shop Brings Family and Friends Together

Sometimes the most extraordinary memories are made in places found off the beaten path. One such place can be found down a long, winding driveway about 10 miles west of Dover on Westville Road. It’s called the Seven Sister’s Shop yet doesn’t really seem like a shop at all. Chickens roam freely in the yard, a donkey can be heard braying beyond the house, music is playing and a fresh pot of coffee is brewing inside the tiny shop, which could be mistaken for a cottage. Above the doorway is a West Virginia license plate, which belonged to owner Jennifer Wooleyhand’s late mother. “I have six


Delmar’s 3rd Wave Brewing Company: Q&A With Co-Owner Lori Clough

Breweries are popping up all over the First State and one of the newest places to grab a cold craft beer is 3rd Wave Brewery in Delmar, which opened in late 2012. The brewery offers four house beers and many others on a seasonal basis. Delaware Living sat down with Co-owner and Manager Lori Clough to chat about her unique brews. Q: What’s the story of how you opened the brewery? A: I had a couple of home brewing kits and the beer turned out really well. It was easy, like making a cake. We home brewed for almost two years and then my friend, Susan Vickers, called and asked if I wanted to buy a