WHEN ELLICOTT City resident Michele Greenfield opened The Sun last Monday, she was astonished to see a photograph of herself, her mother and her brother Greg Kurtzman skating on Lost Lake.
The photograph had been taken in 1972, she said, when she was 11.
"It made me think of how great a mom I had," she said.
Her mother, Joan Kurtzman, 71, moved to Catonsville with her husband, Don, in 1960, after spending five years in St. Petersburg, Fla. She had grown up in Michigan and longed to be back "where there is a change of season," she said.
She found that in Maryland.
"I used to take my kids to Lake Kittamaqundi when the lake used to freeze," Kurtzman said. Greenfield remembers skating at night off the dock at Town Center. Her mother "sat and watched us sometimes; sometimes she skated," she said. But always, Kurtzman brought a big jug of hot chocolate for her children.
"Those were great times to be with my brothers and sisters," Greenfield said.
YMCA teen dance
Mark and Loriann Bobotek have organized an evening for friends and acquaintances.
On Friday night, Loriann Bobotek will serve a buffet meal of jambalaya, salad and homemade bread to about 10 people.
Then the group will head to the Ellicott City Armory to help chaperon the YMCA's Valentine's Day Teen Dance. The Y expects about 650 teens to attend.
Cathy Smith, community projects director at the YMCA, says the volunteers will need no training.
"They have to know how to use their elbows to get space between kids," she said. "We literally walk between these kids and say, `Space, space.' "
Mark Bobotek has been a board member at the Y's Howard County branch for several years. He and Loriann offered to "do something creative" to help raise money and accepted Smith's invitation to sponsor a teen dance.
The Boboteks have three children -- Hank, 11; Katie, 8; and Samantha, 6.
Loriann went through the Worthington Elementary School directory, pulling out the names of friends and acquaintances. She invited about 35 parents, many with middle school pupils, to join in sponsoring the dance.
She will cook those who attend a good meal -- at $100 per couple. Inviting them to chaperon the dance after dinner will give her guests a chance to see the kind of programs that the Y offers to young people, the Boboteks say.
"Besides the dances," Loriann said, "they do an awful lot for youth."
Chaperoning has helped her appreciate the need filled by such programs. Her invitation to the dinner guests and prospective chaperones reads, "You will rejoice in never having to be 13 again!"
Steve Barber and Sandra and Jim Caffes are contributing money. Tom and Shavaun Lamana, Jay and Beth Briguglio, Katie and Philip Shaw, Marty Kelly, and Kerry and John Foy have signed on to chaperon.
The Briguglios have offered their home for an "after the dance" party with coffee and dessert.
Loriann says her son Hank enjoys the monthly YMCA dances.
"He loves going and hanging out with his buddies," she said.
Funds from the dinner will go to pay expenses for the dance.
The YMCA is looking for creative partnerships like the Boboteks' to raise $120,000 for this year's Partner with Youth Campaign. The money will go to scholarships for disadvantaged youth.
Smith is interested in hearing other creative fund-raising ideas. Information: 410-465-4334.
The dance will be held from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday at the armory, 4224 Montgomery Road. Information: the armory at 410-465-5003.
Speaking of dances, the Centennial High School PTA will sponsor a swing dance from 7: 30 p.m. to 10: 30 p.m. Feb. 12 in the school's cafeteria.
Music will be provided by the Columbia Jazz Ensemble, a 25-piece group.
Parents are encouraged to help chaperon and "join in a dance or two."
Year of the Dragon
Library associates Derek Buker and April Curnow will present "Dragons East & West" at 4: 30 p.m. and 7 p.m. today at the Miller branch library, 9421 Frederick Road.
The 45-minute programs will celebrate the Chinese Year of the Dragon.
Centennial High School students Cara Yang, Shannon Townsend, Svetlana Yarosh, Laura Dolan and Marybeth Bornhorst have been accepted into a countywide Gifted and Talented Visual Art Program.
The program offers advanced art classes taught by teachers in the Gifted and Talented program on selected Saturdays throughout the year.
The county Department of Public Works will hold a meeting Wednesday to share the final design plans for traffic in the Worthington area.
The capital project includes connecting Hale Haven and Doncaster roads, slowing traffic in the community, and plans for sidewalks and roads.
The plans will be on display at 6 p.m. Department staff will give a project summary at 6: 30 p.m., then answer questions and take comments.
The meeting will be held in the Tyson Room of the George Howard Building, 3430 Courthouse Drive, Ellicott City.
Information: the Worthington Community Citizen Inquiry Line at 888-776-6533