BPD has a ‘contingency’ for protests over George Floyd’s death, city announces mental health effort for COVID-19

Photo by Elvert Barnes, via Flickr

The Baltimore Police Department has a “contingency” for protests in Baltimore over the death of Minneapolis man George Floyd in police custody, and has been in touch with Maryland State Police, Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said.

University System of Maryland will mix in-person, remote instruction for fall semester

Image courtesy of University System of Maryland

University System of Maryland institutions will use a mixture of in-person and remote instruction during the fall semester, the school system announced on Friday.

Each of the organization’s 12 universities will announce their own plans for the fall semester within the next two weeks.

Hogan extends moratorium on utility shutoffs, late fees through July 1

Photo by Ricky Romero, via Flickr

Gov. Larry Hogan today extended his order prohibiting utility companies from shutting off services for residents or charging them late fees through July 1.

The order stops electric, gas, water, sewage, phone, cable TV and internet service providers from shutting off services at residences or charging households a late fee for lack of payment.

Maryland Film Festival to be held virtually from June 12-21

The Parkway Theatre hosts the Maryland Film Festival. Image via Facebook.

While the Parkway Theatre remains closed, the Maryland Film Festival will screen many of its selections virtually from June 12-21, organizers announced Thursday.

Over those 10 days, 15 feature films and 150 short films that were previously picked for the festival will be screened online. Each feature film will have a live interactive event with the filmmaker.

Maryland surpasses 50,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases

This is a picture of CDC’s laboratory test kit for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). CDC tests are provided to U.S. state and local public health laboratories, Department of Defense (DOD) laboratories and select international laboratories. Photo courtesy of CDC.

At least 50,988 Marylanders have tested positive for COVID-19, while 233,530 have tested negative as of Friday morning, according to the Maryland Department of Health’s COVID-19 Case Map Dashboard.

Pearlstone Reinvents Itself in the Wake of the Coronavirus Pandemic


When the coronavirus pandemic virus hit, Pearlstone’s business was booming. Sales from its Retreat Center were growing exponentially, as was its in-person experiential learning opportunities that focused on Living Judaism, like immersive holiday celebrations and Family Farm Camp.

Yet in March, things would suddenly change. The hospitality business was hit hard. So was programming. As the community stayed home and practiced social distancing, it was up to the imagination and innovation from Pearlstone’s professionals and volunteers, combined with the support of The Associated, that led to a reenvisioning of the organization’s work.

 “We began to think about how we could sustain Pearlstone and be of service to the community until things began to return to normal,” said Jakir Manela, chief executive officer of Pearlstone. “And we asked ourselves, as people yearn for nature and connection, how can we do that with everyone’s health and safety in mind. We knew we had to pivot, adapt and reinvent.”

In keeping with Pearlstone’s core values of Living Judaism, Connectedness, and Loving Warmth, the agency began to rethink its role. Going beyond virtual experiences, which included adding new programs like “Let’s Get Cooking” and “Grow Your Own” (for budding gardeners), Pearlstone began to reimagine.

That led to an organizational commitment to build on the agency’s strengths. As a result, Pearlstone has created dynamic, new strategies for community impact during these difficult times.

“Although the crisis has hit Pearlstone like a tsunami, our ability to adapt, and our partnership with The Associated and its leaders are helping us through this crisis,” says Manela. “We are blessed to have our leaders.”

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Baltimore restaurants allowed to have outdoor dining on Friday

Photo via the Governor’s Office/Flickr

Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young today announced that restaurants with outdoor dining permits will be allowed to begin serving customers outside starting at 5 p.m. on Friday in accordance with new guidance from Gov. Larry Hogan.

Restaurants that do not have an outdoor dining permit can apply for a temporary permit online starting at 9 a.m. on Monday.