Some in community going extra mile during holidays


November 21, 1997|By Lourdes Sullivan | Lourdes Sullivan,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

AS THE holiday season nears, most of us have to find time to squeeze in shopping, religious observances and feast preparation.

Others, however, do more.

Not only do they find time to enjoy the festive offerings of the season -- but they volunteer as performers.

In our neighborhood, the Columbia Figure Skating Club presents its holiday show, "The Nutcracker."

It's a way to showcase novices in smaller roles, and experienced skaters who dance the more demanding parts.

And it's fun to watch the progress of local skaters over the years as they graduate to more important roles.

This year, for example, Anna Campos of Laurel has a starring role as the Snow Queen.

In the half-dozen years the 15-year-old has been skating competitively, she's won many regional awards.

She has performed with Olympic skater Nancy Kerrigan on Cape Cod in Massachusetts.

"The Nutcracker" features about 120 members of the club.

Among the more than 90 skating children are Laurel residents Brynn Harbert, who will be a flower; Jennifer Flagg, who skates as a tea cake; and Cynthia Schmidt, who is a party guest.

Four performances are planned, two each Dec. 13 and 20 at the Columbia Ice Rink on Thunder Hill Road in Columbia.

Performances begin at 4: 45 p.m. and 6 p.m. Tickets are $6, and patrons are encouraged to buy tickets early. The production sold out last year.

Information: the ice rink, 410-730-0322; Donna Burrows, 410-461-9948; or Claire Hayes, 410-549-4491.

New partners

Hammond Elementary School has a new educational partner.

Sandy Springs National Bank in Burtonsville has formally joined the school in an effort to improve opportunities for children.

The bank is providing something that all artists crave -- display space for their work.

Art teacher Heidi White has planned three exhibits of student work at the bank next year.

The bank also is supporting the Parent Volunteer Reading Program by donating funds to the school for reading materials.

Reading specialist Louise Smith will help the bank and the PTA select the books.

Thanks go to Donna Lampe and Linda Mercier of the bank for their unstinting support in establishing the partnership.

Parade of trees

Savage Mill, the restored cloth mill on the banks of the Little Patuxent River, is holding its annual Parade of Trees.

Each year, nonprofit organizations decorate a tree in a theme that expresses the group's mission.

Bethel Christian Academy won first prize for its tree, decorated with pencil and berry garlands, small blackboards with teachers' names and other academically inspired items.

The angel topping its tree is a doll dressed as a student.

The Animal Rescue League also won a first-prize ribbon for its tree decorated with clay pets, garlands of dog biscuits and little cans of cat treats.

An angel kitty tops that tree.

St. Elizabeth's School won second prize for its white tree decorated with heart-shaped collages. The collages include poems, pleas and dreams -- all written by the students.

Third prize was shared by There's Room at the Inn -- a teen haven -- and by the Special Care Nursery of Howard County General Hospital.

There's Room at the Inn is selling the ornaments to benefit its programs, and the hospital is selling the rocking horses named for children helped by the Special Care Nursery.

It's a clever way to raise funds while decorating a tree.

A number of local and national charities are represented by trees. D.C. Habitat for Humanity's tree features Popsicle-stick, house-shaped frames surrounding pictures of volunteers fixing homes last summer.

The Make-a-Wish Foundation's tree features birdhouses, fences and birds, while the Elton John AIDS Foundation tree features gilt magnolias and golden ribbons.

The Appalachian Service Project tree's glass ornaments are for sale to help fund the group's efforts.

The House of Ruth -- a shelter service for women and children -- has Victorian-style birds roosting in the branches.

The American Cancer Society's tree is an elegant confection.

In all, the Parade of Trees is a forum for charities to inform the public about their work.

Pub Date: 11/21/97

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