East Columbia youth joins ranks of Eagle Scout


August 04, 1998|By Natalie Harvey | Natalie Harvey,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

EAST COLUMBIA has added another Eagle Scout to its list of accomplished young men.

Jonathan Porter's Eagle ceremony was held June 18 at Glen Mar United Methodist Church in Ellicott City.

Scoutmaster George Baker presented Jonathan the highest Boy Scout rank. Jonathan joined Troop 874 five years ago.

His project, approved by District and National Scout headquarters, was planting trees in Antietam Battlefield's "West Woods" to help return the site to its natural wooded state of more than a hundred years ago.

Jonathan's project and its location were deeply personal.

His great-great-great-great-grandfather, Jacob Bauer, was a sergeant in 16th Connecticut Volunteers, Company G military contingent that fought at Antietam in September 1862.

The Porter family inherited a packet of letters received by Bauer's wife, Emily. The letters inspired Jonathan's project.

Jacob Bauer was later captured and interned at the Andersonville military prison. He survived the war and was in his 90s when he died.

Troop 874 traveled to Antietam for a camping trip, and Jonathan read some of Bauer's letters at the battle site.

Jonathan's brother Christopher, who has earned Star rank in the Scouts, spoke at the Eagle ceremony, which was attended by the boys' family, fellow Scouts and friends.

Jonathan is a junior at Howard High School and a member of the band.

Jonathan's project added beauty to the Sharpsburg historic battlefield and helped instill an awareness of American history in everyone who worked with him.

Summer learning

For many teens, summer is a time to explore their academic interest or improve their skills.

Oakland Mills High School senior Dawn Christensen is an award-winning athlete at her school in field hockey and lacrosse.

This summer, she attended Circle Play Field Hockey Camp at James Madison University in Virginia to hone her skills.

And hone them, she did.

From a field of 300 girls, Dawn was selected to be a midfielder for the all-star team.

Returning to Columbia, Dawn is back at work as a lifeguard for the Columbia Association at Stevens Forest neighborhood pool, and as a Red Lobster Restaurant hostess.

Last summer, she was a member of the Columbia youth group sponsored by St. John the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church and St. John United Methodist-Presbyterian Church that travels to Appalachia each year to work on the the Appalachian Service Project -- improving and sometimes expanding homes for those in need.

During fall and winter, Dawn works at the Columbia indoor pools and plays indoor field hockey for the Howard County Hurricanes.

She is an A student, pursuing an honors curriculum at school.

Her parents are Veronica and Frank Christensen.

Storytellers available

Norma Hill, director of the Howard County library, wants everyone to be aware of the "story-time service" that the library offers to licensed child-care providers in the county.

From September through June, a storyteller visits child-care homes every other week to help the children with reading skills and present songs and activities.

A selection of books and related activities is left with the child-care provider for use between visits.

Early childhood specialist Susan Morris coordinates the visits, giving priority to providers who have not used the free service.

Information: 410-313-7783.

Some important dates

Stevens Forest Elementary Principal Bill Payne has announced some important dates for students and their families.

Circle Aug. 21 on your calendars -- the date for orientation for new students and their families. Orientation will be at 2: 30 p.m.

Everyone is invited to tour the school, 6045 Stevens Forest Road, and visit classrooms, the gym and the cafeteria during the open house, from 2: 45 p.m. to 3: 15 p.m.

The second date to circle is Sept. 3. At 7 p.m., parents and guardians who are interested in enrolling their children in the Gifted and Talented program at the school are invited to meet in the media center.

Kindergartners will share a back-to-school evening with their parents and guardians at 7 p.m. Sept. 9.

And the Parent-Teacher Association sponsors a back-to-school night at 7 p.m. Sept. 10 for all students and their families.

Winning cheerleaders

When you watch the Baltimore Ravens' first game of the preseason this weekend, pay close attention to their cheer and dance squads, costumed in purple and black.

Three east Columbians -- Oakland Mills High graduates Stephanie Sutch and Imani Myles, and Hammond High School graduate Tiffany Murray -- have been selected to be part of the Ravens' professional squad.

Skill and experience account for their professional status.

The young women were on their high school cheerleading teams and are on the University of Maryland, College Park team.

Imani, an instructor for the National Cheerleading Association, cheered at the Rose Bowl and was selected twice for the High School All-America team.

Stephanie was on a Canadian Football League cheerleading team, and she coaches girls, ages 9 to 11, on the Middletown/Odessa/Townsend Cavaliers team in Delaware.

Tiffany performed at the 1996 Olympics opening ceremonies in Atlanta and in Barcelona, Spain, for the International Football League.

Another cheerleader who has received recognition is Robin Page, who coaches the Oakland Mills High School team.

She is listed in American Cheerleading magazine's "1998 Who's Who Among High School Coaches in the State of Maryland."

Pub Date: 8/04/98

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