PTA members are first-timers for frigid fund-raiser


January 26, 2001|By Peg Adamarczyk | Peg Adamarczyk,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

ALWAYS UP FOR a challenge, members of the executive board of Solley Elementary School's PTA will be jumping into the frigid waters of the Chesapeake Bay at 2 p.m. tomorrow, taking part in the annual Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge at Sandy Point State Park.

"It seemed like a good idea last summer," said Tracey Myers, PTA president, "but the other evening I heard that the bay's water temperature is 39 degrees - now I'm not so sure."

Myers and the other board members, Stacey Dumsha and Cathy Hill, learned about the Polar Bear Plunge from Hill's husband, Walt.

"Walt has done the plunge for the past five years or so to raise money for Special Olympics [the Hills' daughter, Victoria, is a Special Olympian], and one day I asked him about a special sweat shirt he was wearing," Myers said. "It took a lot of fund raising for Walt to get that shirt and he really wanted a new one, so we took on the challenge - get enough pledges to get Walt a new Plunge sweat shirt."

But Myers, Dumsha and Cathy Hill won't be only people representing Solley Elementary in their first cold plunge tomorrow. Veteran participant Walt Hill will be there, with Myers' and Dumsha's spouses, Darryl Myers and Kelly Dumsha.

"We've gotten our husbands involved in this, too," Tracey Myers said, "so I expect to be dunked in the water tomorrow."

Also accompanying the six plungers is an entourage of 10 supporters to witness and record the dip for posterity.

The Solley group has raised almost $3,000 in Special Olympics pledges and donations. "We have really gotten a lot of support from teachers at the school, our jobs and the community," she noted. "Most people think we're crazy. Maybe we are, but it sounds like a fun event that raises money for a good cause."

As an added element in this year's plunge, participants have been encouraged to wear Ravens purple. Solley's representatives have obliged the organizers by obtaining purple T-shirts with "PTA Raven Maniacs" emblazoned on the front. But the costuming hasn't stopped there.

"We're dressing up as Edgar, Allan and Poe, the Ravens mascots," Tracey Myers said. "About the only thing we don't have yet is wings, but we are working on it."

In any case, the purple shirts and Ravens costuming likely will go well with the color of the people after their plunge.

"I won't know until tomorrow what shade of purple I'll be after I get out of the water," she said, "but I'm so pumped up about it that I can't wait."

The group is accepting donations. Contact the school at 410-222-6473 or drop them off or mail them to: Solley Elementary School PTA, 7608 Solley Road, Glen Burnie 21060.

Itzels to perform

The congregation of Chesapeake Christian Center Church of God, 7975 Tick Neck Road, invites the community to a concert by Bill and Karen Itzel at 10 a.m. Sunday.

The Itzels are singer-songwriters committed to their Christian faith and experience. They have performed in more than 1,800 concerts.

Information: 410-255-3168.

PBA heading to the mall

The Pasadena Business Association will have its next general membership meeting at 11:30 a.m. Feb. 7 at the Arundel Mills Retail Skills Center in Hanover.

Highlights of the meeting will be a presentation on Mills Corp., the developer behind Maryland's largest shopping mall, and a close-up view of its retail skills center.

The skills center was designed by Kathleen Beauman, a member of the staff at Anne Arundel Community College. Training provided at the center is the beginning step to put workers on a retail career path and help ensure that customers receive the highest level of service.

Lunch will be catered by an Arundel Mills restaurant.

The cost for PBA members is $9. Reservations are required by Feb. 2.

Information: Carol Cross at 410-987-4887 or Ann Abruzzo at 410-647-3856.

Catholic Schools Week

St. Jane Frances School in Riviera Beach will celebrate Catholic Schools Week with a packed calendar of events starting Sunday.

The theme for this year is "Faith for a Brighter Future."

Activities will begin with a Mass at noon Sunday for school families at St. Jane Frances de Chantal Roman Catholic Church, followed by the school's presentation of several volunteer awards.

Throughout the week, the school will focus on the various aspects of its family, including pupils, faculty and staff.

Parents of pupils and prospective pupils in grades one to eight are invited to an open house from 8:30 a.m. to noon Wednesday. Open house for classroom visits for prekindergarten and kindergarten will be from 8 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

A book fair in the school library will be open Sunday through Friday. Hours are 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Wednesday hours will be 8 a.m. to noon and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Open registration for new pupils will take place at 9 a.m. Feb. 6 for pre-K, Feb. 7 for kindergarten, and Feb. 8 for first to eighth grades.

Parents signing up children should bring a completed registration form, copies of each child's birth and baptismal certificates, immunization records, Social Security number and a nonrefundable $75 registration fee.

Information: 410-255-4750.

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