Delaware Public Media

Eileen Smith Dallabrida


Eileen Smith Dallabrida has written for Delaware Public Media since 2010.  She's also written for USA Today, National Geographic Traveler, the Christian Science Monitor and many other news outlets. She was national runner-up for the Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) award for her work with the Gannett New Jersey group. She is a trustee of Market Street Music, a group dedicated to celebrating the arts in Wilmington, and a champion of the television quiz show Jeopardy! She lives and writes in Wilmington.

Ways to Connect

Delaware Public Media

We’ve previously discussed what’s next for shopping malls and other retail centers across the First State.

But there’s another highly competitive battle for consumer dollars  – the one waged by grocery stores.

Contributor Eileen Dallabrida takes a look at the lay of the land in that increasingly competitive market.

Delaware Public Media

Kids are getting phones at a younger age these days, and using them and other devices to live an increasingly digital life.

That leaves parents with a dilemma: How can they make sure their children live that digital life safely and responsibly?  And where does the line fall between keeping tabs on your kid and invading their privacy?

We asked contributor Eileen Dallabrida to delve into this issue.

Elleen Dallabrida / Delaware Public Media

How do you want to spend your retirement?  Travelling? Playing golf?

How about restoring pipe organs?

That’s what Bill Church is doing after a career that included creating Brown and Church, the iconic menswear line known for classic ties.

And his pet project is bringing a pipe organ back to Archmere Academy, which saw its previously one sold off during the Great Depression.

For this week’s Enlighten Me, contributor Eileen Dallabrida chronicles Church’s work.

As consumers plunge into the traditional holiday shopping season, they are expected to spend more than ever. They also will shop in more ways, making wish lists via voice-activated personal assistants, activating coupons on their phones, and downloading apps that lead them directly to gifts in the store.


By Trogain (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Holiday shoppers can expect a gift from retailers this year, with abundant deep discounts and doorbusters

Delaware Public Media

Over the years, back-to-school shopping has become more than a retail excursion for JoAnn Babbie and her two sons.

Picking out binders and backpacks requires a parent-child conversation. Comparing prices is a teachable moment. And handing over the credit card and car keys to allow the boys to do some shopping on their own is a rite of passage.

Delaware Public Media

This year’s back-to-school fashions have moved beyond plaid, with new colors, cuts and combinations designed to inspire discretionary spending.

While shopping in recent years has focused on purchases kids need rather than want, this season there’s a trend toward indulgence.

Delaware Public Media

In the library, silence is a time-honored tradition.

But at the New Castle County Library's Brandywine Hundred Branch, there’s a soft hum of sewing machines.

At Greenwood Library, culinary enthusiasts whip up chocolate mousse.

In New Castle, the Route 9 Library and Innovation Center is now home to groups of do-it-yourselfers wielding screwdrivers and soldering irons to put together small projects.

Megan Pauly / Delaware Public Media

Each summer morning, a large bin of bagged meals appears just inside the front door at Frankford Public Library, where kids who don’t have enough food at home can readily pick up something to eat.

In this Sussex County community, population 847, the library is filling a gap, ensuring kids who receive free or reduced-cost breakfast and lunch during the school year don’t go hungry after school lets out.

Delaware Public Media

For Dori Schuster, shopping is one part necessity, one part recreation, and one part social opportunity.

With multiple super centers, the Christiana retail hub fills all three requirements. In Delaware, Schuster, of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, finds tax-free bargains for her family. She enjoys a break at restaurants. And Christiana is midway between her home and her parents’ house in Maryland, an ideal spot to get together.