New principal eager for challenges at Piney Ridge Elementary



WHEN THE SCHOOL bell rings and the doors of Piney Ridge Elementary School open in two weeks, students will be greeted by a new principal.

Ralph C. Viggiano has joined the staff at the school and officially began his duties as principal yesterday morning. Viggiano replaces Gloria Horneff, who has taken a position with the Maryland Department of Education.

Viggiano comes to Piney Ridge after a 26-year career in the Prince George's County school system. He has a bachelor's degree from California University of Pennsylvania and a master's degree from George Washington University.

After beginning his career as a teacher, Viggiano has been an elementary school principal for the past eight years, most

recently at Oaklands Elementary School in Laurel. He had been considering a change in schools when the position opened up at Piney Ridge.

"I had always heard good things about the Carroll County school system," said Viggiano.

As principal at Piney Ridge, Viggiano is looking forward to the challenges he will face. "Learning about a new school system and a new community that is probably a bit different from where I'm coming from, will be definitely the biggest challenge," he said.

Viggiano is also eager to work with the staff at Piney Ridge. "I've heard lots of great things about the teaching staff and about the families in the community." he said.

Making sure that the teachers are supported in their teaching efforts and that the school's instructional program is the best will be high on his list of priorities.

Viggiano and his wife, Elaine, have two daughters. They have lived in Howard County near Sykesville for the past four years.

Peggy Holniker Day

Family, friends and the community came together Saturday to celebrate the life of Peggy Holniker in the second annual "M. Peggy Holniker Day" at the Eldersburg branch of the Carroll County Public Library.

The late Mrs. Holniker worked tirelessly to bring the Eldersburg facility to reality and was devoted to children and their education through library use.

The celebration drew a steady crowd throughout the day. Many of the special events and programs were aimed at children and their families.

Costumed clowns, face painting, storytelling and a puppet show were popular with the children. The Carroll County Sheriff's Department offered free child identification cards. Demonstrations by the Sykesville Police Department's K-9 division and the Freedom District Fire Department's fire suppression department fascinated visitors.

Young musicians

Some young band students and their instructor will offer their own brand of music Friday evening at the amphitheater at Piney Run Park. The free concert begins at 7: 30 p.m.

The 24 musicians in grades five through eight have come together as part of the Summer Band Program organized and taught by David Smith, a music teacher in the Howard County school system and a resident of Sykesville.

The music program is held at Liberty High School and offers students with at least one year of playing experience the opportunity to gain new musical skills while making friends. Smith makes sure that his well rounded program includes lots of fun.

"It's got to be fun, there has to be games," he said. "Some kids come for the kickball games, others for the popular word-of-the-day."

Students from past camps still remind him of a word he taught them -- hemidemisemiquaver. I had to use my dictionary for that one -- you probably will, too.

This year's camp has students from Baltimore, Carroll and Howard counties. After only eight days together, they will present a variety of traditional concert band music along with some popular pieces.

Smith says he is always happy with the way the students perform at the camp's end. "The difference between what they sound like at the beginning of the camp and the end is amazing."

Come to Piney Run Park and hear for yourself. Information: 795-3562.

Pub Date: 8/06/96

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