Business Briefs - April 15

April 15, 2012

On the Wings of Dreams

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. — On the Wings of Dreams, at 139 W. German St. in Shepherdstown, recently donated $220 to the Potomac Valley Audubon Society.

This is the fifth year owner Laura Rau has set aside 3 cents from each crystal and mineral sold throughout the year to donate to the Audubon Society. This year’s donation, based on money earned in 2011, targets the society’s youth programs, which include camps, scholarships and naturalist programs that promote conservation and nature exploration.


FREDERICK, Md. — Listeners to WWEG and WAFY responded in strong fashion March 15 and 16, donating more than $55,000 to the third annual Relay for Life Radio-Thon at Frederick Memorial Hospital.

The official tally at the end of the radiothon was $55,067, with additional contributions coming in at the end of the weekend.

One of the highlights of the fundraiser was a visit from University of Maryland freshman Zach Lederer, whose battle against cancer has reached viral proportions. His strong-man pose known as “Zaching” can be seen from the College Park campus around the world.


WASHINGTON — The Edison Electric Institute recently honored FirstEnergy with the association’s Emergency Recovery Award for its response in restoring power to its customers following Hurricane Irene in August 2011.

The Emergency Recovery Award is presented each year to U.S.- and foreign-based member companies to distinguish an outstanding response in restoring electrical service that has been disrupted by severe weather conditions or natural events. Winners were chosen by a panel of judges following an international nomination process, and the awards were presented during EEI’s spring chief executive officer meeting.

In late August, FirstEnergy’s service territory was hit with a massive hurricane that left approximately 1.1 million FirstEnergy customers in JCP&L, Met-Ed, Potomac Edison and Penelec service territories without power. Workers contended with thousands of downed trees, washed-out roads and flooded substations during the course of the restoration process.

As the storm traveled up the East Coast, company meteorologists monitored weather patterns and provided twice-daily updates to company personnel. Several days before the storm, FirstEnergy mobilized a “utility of wheels,” complete with vehicles, supplies, equipment and fuel to assist with the restoration process. To assist where needed, FirstEnergy dispatched personnel from its utilities in states not affected by the storm, including line crews, hazard responders, damage assessors, dispatchers, mechanics and public protectors. The company also secured additional line crews from other utilities as a result of its mutual-assistance agreements.

Additionally, FirstEnergy implemented its comprehensive Emergency Storm Restoration Plan, which was crucial to being able to manage this multistate restoration effort.

Throughout the event, FirstEnergy’s Call Center also was instrumental in communicating estimated restoration times with customers. During Hurricane Irene and the subsequent restoration efforts,

FirstEnergy call centers answered nearly 900,000 customer calls. In addition, the company’s communications efforts focused on public safety and sharing information on progress in restoring service.

FirstEnergy has been honored with other EEI awards, including the Emergency Assistance Award for helping to restore electric service to neighboring utilities following severe weather conditions or other natural events.  The company won the award six years in a row from 2006-11.

Knob Hall Winery

CLEAR SPRING — Knob Hall Winery in Clear Spring recently received a gold medal at the 36th annual International Eastern Wine Competition & Riesling Championship, held March 5 to 7 in Santa Rosa, Calif.

The competition was for wines produced in the Eastern United States and Eastern Canada, and included more than 800 wines.

Knob Hall’s gold medal was the only one won by a Maryland wine. The winery also won a bronze medal with its Chambourcin.

Located on Saint Paul Road just outside Clear Spring, Knob Hall Winery is one of the few wineries in Maryland that has a female winemaker, Mary Beth Seibert. In 2010, the winery won more gold medals than any other winery at the Maryland Wine Festival. The three gold medals turned out to be the most that any winery in Maryland had ever won. Knob Hall’s rosé was selected as best in class, as well.

At the 2011 Maryland Wine festival, the winery won four silver medals and two bronze medals.

Knob Hall Winery is Washington County’s only winery, and now has more than 30 acres of land under grape production.

There are nearly 50 wineries in Maryland.

For more information about Knob Hall, go to or call 301-842-2777.

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