The Bay Restorer

Restoring Our Oyster. Cleaning Our Bay. Preserving Our Future.

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Don't forget to take advantage of tax benefits by donating to ORP now!
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Did You Know?  

It is a common misconception that eating oysters might contribute to the Bay's dwindling oyster population. When you enjoy oysters from one of our Shell Recycling Alliance  Participants, that oyster shell is recycled back into the Bay.  In fact, each shell recycled can host approximately 10 new oysters when replanted.  ORP also participates in many local events that involve oyster consumption where then shell is also recycled. 


Did you know that, 95% of the oysters consumed worldwide are farmed oysters?  Such oyster aquaculture is usually well managed, sustainable, and beneficial to the environment.  Farm-raised oysters minimally impact marine resources since they are filter-feeding organisms.  Because of this filter-feeding action, oyster farms can actually benefit surrounding coastal waters by eating algae and filtering out particulates and excess nutrients.  Plus they can also create habitat for other organisms.  Barton Seaver, National Geographic Fellow and author of "For Cod and Country," even advocates that eating farmed oysters is our patriotic duty.

So enjoy oysters this oyster season!  Remember, if you eat at one of the Shell Recycling Alliance member restaurants the leftover shells will be recycled for future oyster reef restoration in the Chesapeake!
ORP Outreach

Oysters and Pearls 

InterContinental Harbor Court Baltimore 


January 7, 2012 

Bay Area Shuckers vs Manhattan Pride 

Severn, MD


January 13-15, 2012

38th Annual East Coast Commercial Fishermen's and Aquaculture Expo 

Ocean City, MD   

Oyster News



Oyster Remote Setting Program Update 

ORP Executive Director, Stephan Abel, will be speaking to the attendees of the 2012 East Coast Commercial Fishermen's and Aquaculture Trade Expo next week to discuss the Remote Setting Infrastructure and training opportunities for watermen. 


Additionally, ORP and the UMCES Horn Point Oyster Hatchery will be on site with a remote setting tank exhibit so that interested participants can see a demonstration on the program and be able to obtain information about how to register.


Thanks to our restoration partners, including the Horn Point Lab Oyster Hatchery, particularly Mutt Meritt, Steven Weschler and Alan Raoche, for helping make this program a viable method for supporting Maryland aquaculture. We look forward to more success in 2012.

Meet Our Board Members

Mark StemenMark Stemen 
Virginia Division President, Washington Homes

Member of the Board Development Subcommittee


Mark Stemen is a home building executive with over 30 years' experience as a builder/developer in the Washington D.C. Region. Mr. Stemen currently serves as the Virginia Division President for Lennar, a national home builder.

Mr. Stemen is a graduate of the University of Michigan and has a Masters Degree in Public Administration from Wayne State University.  He has a law degree from Emory University and is a member of the State Bars of Georgia and South Carolina. Mark and his wife own a home on the Wye River in Queenstown where they enjoy relaxing with their two Pembroke Welsh Corgis (Becca and Gavin, a retired champion). Mark's two grown sons also work in the Washington area.

Mark Stemen Corgis

Mark Stemen Corgi Bay

Best Wishes in 2012!
ORP Team at OEG
ORP team at the Old Ebbitt Grill Oyster Matinee - Photo by Sarah Kingston


Happy New Year from the Oyster Recovery Partnership!


The Oyster Recovery Partnership is proud of our work in 2011 and our team is eager to continue to build on this momentum to ensure that 2012 is an even more successful year.


With the unwavering support of our restoration partners, ORP planted over 500 million spat-on-shell back into the Chesapeake Bay in 2011. This was the 4th consecutive year that University of MD Horn Point Oyster Hatchery produced more than half a billion oysters. ORP was also able to grow our Shell Recycling Alliance to nearly 100 restaurants and bring on new seafood distributors, seafood markets, and large-scale grocers. All of these efforts have increased the visibility of the Chesapeake Bay's oyster recovery efforts and educated the public about the importance of oysters in our Bay.


In October 2011, ORP participated in a unique dining promotion that included approximately 200 restaurants in Maryland, the District of Columbia, Virginia, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. The "From the Bay, For the Bay" promotion (Oct 2-9, 2011) created by the MD Department of Natural Resources was a multi-faceted campaign which encouraged consumption of local Maryland seafood, promoted local watermen, and supported the Oyster Recovery Partnership. Each restaurant donated $1 from each Maryland seafood dish sold that week to the Oyster Recovery Partnership.


ORP is thrilled to announce that through our supportive and enthusiastic restaurant partners we were able to raise over $20,000 which will be used to restore oysters into the Chesapeake Bay. A special thanks to our top fundraising restaurants: Boatyard, Matchbox, Ryleigh's, and Woodberry Kitchen. These restaurants went above and beyond to not only donate, but help reach a wider audience of future Bay restorers. For all of their hard work they will receive a "Day on the Bay" trip with ORP. For a complete list of all the restaurants that participated in the "From the Bay" promotion Click HerePlease continue to visit these restaurants year round to show appreciation for their support of the Bay. 


 -- Stephan Abel, Executive Director, ORP



OEG Oyster Riot Volunteers
ORP Volunteers at the Old Ebbitt Grill Oyster Riot 
Are You an Oyster Insider?  

Shuckers go Swish!


ORP is sinking some baskets this month, and we don't mean the bushel kind. The Oyster Recovery Partnership and the Chesapeake Bay region's newest pro basketball team, the Bay Area Shuckers, are working together to support the restoration of the Bay's oyster population. Supporters can now enjoy a fun evening of professional sports while promoting Chesapeake Bay oyster recovery.


Join ORP and the Bay Area Shuckers on Saturday, January 7 at 7 PM! 


Where: Kilby Athletic Center - 109 Burns Crossing Road in Severn, MD 21144 (on the campus of the Annapolis Area Christian School) 

 Bay Area Shuckers

Shell Recycling Alliance Newest Members! 
The Oyster Recovery Partnership's most publicly-recognized
ogram - the region's oyster Shell Recycling Alliance, launched by the Partnership in 2010 -- is made up of nearly 100 restaurants, caterers and seafood distributors from the DC, Maryland and Virginia region, as well as citizen volunteers who collect used oyster shells from area businesses to aid in restoring the Chesapeake Bay.  
Shell recylcing at McGarvey's Annapolis
ORP's Shell Recycling Alliance provides 15% of Maryland's shell needs at current oyster production levels

Our newest SRA members: 



O'Brien Oyster Bar 



Gertrude's at the Baltimore Museum of Art

Dock of the Bay 


Washington, DC:

America Eats Tavern 


Kent Island:



Cambridge, MD

Leaky Pete's Oyster & Wine Bar

Blue Point Provision (Hyatt)

Oyster Season Events in Full Swing!


As the holidays and oyster season moved into full swing, the Oyster Recovery Partnership enjoyed a number of fabulous events in Baltimore and DC.  Thanks to all of our oyster supporters who were able to attend these oyster parties! 


Oyster Riot Matinee   

Shells Collected OEG
The event filled an entire dumpster with shells which will later be set with baby oysters and released into the Chesapeake Bay - Photo by Sarah Kingston


Thank you to the Old Ebbitt Grill for hosting the 2nd annual Oyster Riot Matinee; and for generously donating a portion of the Matinee's proceeds to the Oyster Recovery Partnership. This was a culinary oyster experience of epic proportions with thousands of oyster fans appreciating thousands of oysters.


Always held on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, oyster lovers from the DC metro area and beyond gathered in downtown DC to taste the best oysters and oyster pairing wines from around the globe. 


ORP was able to meet and educate future oyster restorers and catch up with current supporters who attended the event. All shells from the event were separated and recycled for future restoration. 


This annual event is one of ORP's favorites and we hope that you will be able to join us again next November! Mark your calendars now - Oyster Riot tickets always sell out within hours, and sometimes just minutes!  


Shuckfest at Woodberry Kitchen & Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout Premiere

Woodberry Kitchen Oyster Party
Pearl Necklace Release Party at Woodberry Kitchen - Photo by Sarah Kingston

In November, Flying Dog released one of their newest concoctions: a beer made with oysters, paired with oysters, with proceeds benefiting oysters.  The Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout was celebrated with release events all over the area which were attended by ORP, Flying Dog, and throngs of beer and oyster aficionados.  The world premier of the Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout was held outside a Shell Recycling Alliance partner restaurant - Woodberry Kitchen.  Woodberry is nationally-recognized for its incredible food, sustainable practices, and great atmosphere, and this party was no exception. It was a true Shuckfest with delicious oysters donated by Rappahannock River Oyster Company. Attendees enjoyed raw, stewed, and grilled oysters...and of course then washed them down with oyster stout.  


Pearl Necklace Beer Tap
Flying Dog Stout Tap - Photo by Sarah Kingston 



Proceeds from the Flying Dog Oyster Stout will be donated to the Oyster Recovery Partnership for future oyster reef restoration in the Chesapeake Bay.  In 2011 this beer was only available in kegs and quickly sold out, but in the Fall of 2012 it will be bottled and ready for you to take home and enjoy!







Oxfords and Oysters


ORP photoboothBryan oyster demo O&O

ORP team members working hard and playing hard at the Oxfords and Oysters Party at the Four Seasons Baltimore Hotel - Photos by Onomonomedia Photobooth and Eli Turner Studios 



ORP had the pleasure of participating in the sold-out 2nd Annual "Oxfords and Oysters" -- the first event to be held at the newly renovated and opened, luxury Four Seasons Baltimore Hotel. Hosted by Sky Blue Events, this party was sophisticated and fun. Guests had a beautiful view of the Baltimore marina, and enjoyed oysters, hors d'oeuvres, open bar, music, dancing, and festivities.  The event also featured a spectacular silent auction benefiting the Oyster Recovery Partnership with great items donated by local businesses.  

Out & About

MWA Color Logo 

Upcoming: 38th Annual East Coast Commercial Fishermen's & Aquaculture Trade Exposition


Don't miss your opportunity to attend the 2012 East Coast Commercial Fishermen's and Aquaculture Trade Expo hosted by the Maryland Watermen's Association. The event will be held on January 13, 14, and 15th at the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, Maryland. 


This expo is the only commercial fishing show in the Mid-Atlantic Region drawing public, fishermen, charter captains, aquaculturists, scientists, and educators from throughout the East Coast.  ORP will be attending to educate participants on our work as well as to discuss the new remote setting program we have which allows watermen to grow their own oysters to be placed on their Chesapeake Bay leases. 



MWA Expo 

Ask a Scientist
Spat on shell
Baby oysters that have set on a recycled oyster shell - Photo by Erika Nortemann
How does temperature effect an oyster's ability to pump and filter water?


A:  When waters begin to warm during the spring and summer, an oyster's pumping rate increases, and for the most part they are filtering and eating more.  Under optimal conditions mature oysters can pump and clear approximately 50 gallons of water a day.  As water temperatures begin to decrease so does the rate at which oysters pump and filter water.  At temperatures below 5 degrees C (41 degrees F), most pumping and filtering activity stops.  Oysters become basically dormant during the winter months prior to their spring time ripening. 



Partner Profile 



The Maryland Watermen's Association is a charter partner with the Oyster Recovery Partnership, assisting in the State-wide effort to enhance and preserve the Chesapeake Bay oyster population since 1994. Formed in 1973, the group is dedicated to the interests of all who derive beauty and benefit from Maryland's Chesapeake Bay waters. Representing all commercially-licensed watermen from Maryland, its Board of Directors is comprised of watermen from all Bay-bordering counties.



The Maryland Watermen's Association presents the 38th East Coast Commercial Fishermen's and Aquaculture Trade Exposition at the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, Maryland from January 13-15, 2012.  Visit our booth! 

Aw Shucks!

Eating Oyster 

As I ate the oysters, with their strong taste of the sea

And their metallic taste, that cold white wine washed away, 

Leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture,

And as I drank their cold liquid from each shell

And washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine,

I lost the empty feeling

And began to be happy

And to make plans.


- Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast


Oyster Trivia
Oyster Riot Dumpster
Filled shell recycling dumpster at the end of the Oyster Riot

ORP recycled ____ # of bushels of shell from the Old Ebbitt Grill Oyster Riot and Oyster Matinee?    

a. 50   b. 75  c. 100   

d. 150  

Read the next issue of The Bay Restorer to learn the answer!
Answer from last issue's question: Oysters can take on a variety of flavors including: salty, mineral, mossy, smoky, and metalic.

Rockin Oysters Rockefeller
Oyster Recipe

Rockin' Oysters Rockefeller 


24 fresh, unopened oysters

3/4 cup beer

1 clove garlic

seasoned salt to taste

3-1/2 black peppercorns

1/4 cup butter

1/2 onion, chopped

1/2 clove garlic, crushed

1/2 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained

1/4 pound Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

1/4 pound fontina cheese, shredded

1/4 pound mozzarella cheese, shredded

1/4 cup milk

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 tablespoon fine bread crumbs



1. Clean oysters, and place in a large stockpot. Pour in beer and enough water to cover oysters; add 2 cloves garlic, seasoned salt, and peppercorns. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat, drain, and cool.


2. Once oysters are cooled, break off and discard the top shell. Arrange the oysters on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C.).


3. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook onion and garlic in butter until soft. Reduce heat to low, and stir in spinach, Monterey Jack, fontina, and mozzarella. Cook until cheese melts, stirring frequently. Stir in the milk, and season with salt and pepper. Spoon sauce over each oyster, just filling the shell. Sprinkle with bread crumbs.


4. Bake until golden and bubbly, approximately 8 to 10 minutes.


Recipe and photo found at:




About the Oyster Recovery Partnership

Oyster Recovery Partnership logo
Working with more than a dozen stakeholder groups to rehabilitate historic and relic oyster bars, the Oyster Recovery Partnership has planted more than 3 billion new oysters and rehabilitated more than 1,500 acres of once viable oyster reefs. Learn more.


Restoring Our Oyster. Cleaning Our Bay. Preserving Our Future. This is the mission of the Oyster Recovery Partnership (ORP) -- a 501(c)(3) non-profit based in Annapolis, MD. ORP actively promotes, supports and restores oysters for ecologic and economic purposes. We engage in numerous Chesapeake Bay-related projects by conducting science-based "in-the-water" and "on-the-land" recovery efforts, while conducting public outreach and education in our quest to protect our environment, our heritage, and our knowledge of the Chesapeake Bay, its marshes and rivers, and the life that it sustains.


A copy of our current financial statement is available upon request by contacting the Oyster Recovery Partnership, Inc. at 1805A Virginia Street, Annapolis, MD 21401 or 410.990.4970. Documents and information submitted to the State of Maryland under the Maryland Charitable Solicitations Act are available from the Office of the Secretary of State for the cost of copying and postage. Oyster Recovery Partnership, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization -- donations to which are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
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