Farms ready Halloween activities

October 16, 2003

With Halloween around the corner, farms are preparing pumpkins and hayrides. Sharp's at Waterford Farm in Brookeville offers a little more: campfires, a corn maze, a straw maze, scarecrow-making, nature trails, a farm museum, a country store and observation beehives. Pumpkins can be picked for 45 cents a pound; hayrides are free.

Owner Chuck Sharp said Tropical Storm Isabel did not affect activities at the farm. At this time last year, he said, business was much worse because of the sniper attacks that kept potential visitors at home. But this year's wet and cool summer created "a struggle getting crops planted," Sharp said.

Sharp's farm is a 520-acre operation off Jennings Chapel Road. Gourds, squash, specialty pumpkins, Indian corn and popcorn are among its crops. All are for sale at the farm, which is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through next month.

Sharp said the pumpkin patch and hayrides usually draw the largest crowds. Scarecrow-making is available from noon to 3 p.m. on weekends.

Campfires are available for groups of 25 or more. Also part of the package is a hayride that includes a talk about agriculture and wildlife. The cost is $6 a person. The corn maze can be added for $4. The program provides pumpkins for 35 cents a pound. Also included is time for feeding farm animals. The campfires are prepared by members of the farm staff.

The corn maze occupies 3 to 5 acres and takes about an hour to navigate. The corn and straw mazes are designed for youth groups and families with children. Admission to both is $6.50 for ages 13 and older; children to age 12 pay $4.50. Admission to the straw maze only is $1.25 a person or $5 a family.

Information: 301-854-6275, or www.sharpfarm.com.

- Caitlin O'Grady

Glenelg Country School's expansion is under way

Glenelg Country School on Folly Quarter Road broke ground Oct. 3 for completion of its upper-school project - a 25,500-square-foot expansion that will include humanities classrooms, science labs, an expanded library and a technology center.

Also included in the project is a 35,000-square-foot athletic center with two basketball courts, a multipurpose athletic room, fitness and training centers, locker rooms, and offices. These facilities will also be used by Glenelg's middle school program.

The school - founded in 1954 by Kingdon Gould Jr., his wife, Mary Thorne Gould, and four other families - plans to increase its high school population from 190 to 300 students. Enrollment is 550 in the primary, lower and middle schools.

Birth

Jacob Nicklaus: To Glen and Yung-Soon Naill of Sykesville on Sept. 30.

Around town

Chess club: The Glenwood library offers open play for chess fans of all ages in its Howard County Library Chess Club. The group meets from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursdays. Registration is not necessary. Chess sets are provided. 410-313-5577.

Nature walks: Howard County Conservancy will continue its series of fall nature walks with a Birds of Fall walk, co-sponsored by the Howard Bird Club, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Sunday at the conservancy's Mount Pleasant Farm, 10520 Old Frederick Road in Woodstock. 410-465-8877.

Arts wing opens: Glenelg High School will open its Performing Arts Wing from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 26 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and performances by the school band, madrigals, orchestra, drama and barbershop quartet. An open house, when members of the community can tour the facility, will be held after the ribbon-cutting. Refreshments will be served. The event, originally scheduled Sept. 21, was postponed because of Tropical Storm Isabel. 410-313-5528.

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