Hurrah for students from the Howard County School of Technology in Ellicott City who competed in Vocational Industrial Clubs of America's 1995 Skills USA Championships. In the April 1 contest, more than 800 Maryland students competed in about 50 contests.
Five Howard County students earned gold or bronze medallions.
The first-place winners will represent Maryland at the Skills USA Championships in Kansas City, Mo., in June. They are Kadrea Grant, for medical assisting; William Slater, for job interviewing; and Faran Kaplan, for residential wiring. This will be Faran's second trip to the national competition.
Third-place winners were Zena Maggitti in cake decorating and Shawana Simmons in nursing assistance.
Other participants included Isaac S. Williams, Nel Santiago, Mark Abel, Takisha Snead, Justin Dorsey, Jason Ashby, Damon Fyock, Margaret Mulvey, Trong Hau, Aaron Percival, Justin Booker, Crystal Brown, Matt Lopez, Jerry Opela, Howie Rapp, and Yolanda Ryan.
The school seeks local sponsors to finance the students at the national level. Contact Mary Day, school principal, at 313-6982.
The cleanup of Ellicott City's Tiber River, sponsored by Tiber-Hudson Watershed Partnership, was held on a sparkling spring day. Charmed by the prospect of puddling around the creek while sprucing up the environment, I went to the cleanup, armed with rubber gloves, along with 60 or so others.
The event, engineered by Ellicott City activist Cindy Hirshberg, was well-organized and, well, fun.
After we split into five groups, each group was given a portion of the river to clear of debris, pulling the material to Main Street. From there a Department of Public Works dump truck would haul it away.
My group began scouring our section at the old Carter's bus depot and walked west.
So what did we find in the Tiber? A bike frame, bathroom sink, laundry basket, many rusty pipes, plastic whatzits, bottles and a mountain of roofing shingles.
After almost three hours of helping each other pull muddy debris from the river, we took a few moments to introduce ourselves. On hand were Ellicott City resident Hayes Ryan; Gary Maule, president of the Ellicott City Restoration Foundation; and Bill Malone from Howard County Department of Public Works.
I was surprised to find that many were not Ellicott City residents. Paul Komor drove from Takoma Park, Tom Mahoney from Gaithersburg, Dean Lamana from the Eastern Shore and Mark Raginsky from Columbia to clear the river. Why? They like to do that kind of thing in the spring.
Do you enjoy the music of Scotland -- the pipes and the drums? If so, here's a wee bit of information that may please you: Tir Na Mahairi, formerly the Dunloggin Pipes and Drums, meets to practice in Ellicott Mills Middle School every Thursday at 7 p.m. in the media center. The 20 or so musicians welcome quiet spectators.
The group, in its 16th year as a competition pipe band, performs at events throughout the Mid-Atlantic region under the direction of Drum Major David Ricklis and Pipe Major Ed Kitlowski.
Tir Na Mahairi, which can provide instructors, seeks people interested in learning to play the bagpipes.
On April 5, Boy Scout Troop 944 added three patrols. New Scouts are Ryan Hikel, Chris Ramsey, Andrew Czajkowski, James Fischer, Brian Kurtzman, Sanjay Stone, Eugene Lee, Daniel Gemp, Stephen Minner, Thaddeus Sysak, Michael Ostroff, Robert Macheel, Ryan Holton, Brian Wilcher, Chris Maruyama, Holly Bennett IV, Michael Bruns, Bradley Watkins, Nicholas Pavlo, Jeffrey Klima, Grant Otto, Alex Chin and Martin Gitt.
They will be working with experienced Troop Guides John Laun, Ryan Yadsco and Jeff Guy.
New adult leaders Ed Minner, Gary Sysak and Holly Bennett III join current adult leaders Gail and Joe Hikel.
Mount Hebron High School class of 1980 is planning its 15th reunion for Nov. 25. The Reunion Committee asks all class members to be in touch with it.
Teachers from Mount Hebron High or feeder schools -- Patapsco Middle, Rockland Elementary and St. John's Lane Elementary -- are welcome, and they will be given a cut rate on the evening's entertainment.
Call Vickie at 795-7927 or Debbie at 461-8256 for information.
Epiphany Lutheran Church and the Columbia Hills Community Association in Ellicott City are sponsoring a community yard sale from 9 a.m. until noon April 29. Most of the sale will be at the church, with individual sales at homes.
Community and church members need to notify the committee by Saturday if they plan to join the sale. Information: (410) 730-6626 or (410) 465-2305.