Young Actors to present `Once on This Island'

East Columbia

December 02, 2007

The Drama Learning Center, 9130-1 Red Branch Road, will present Once on This Island - performed by Teaching Young Actors, the center's teen professional company - at 7 p.m. Saturday, and Dec. 13, 14 and 15, and 2 p.m. Dec. 9 and 15.

Tickets are $12 for the evening performances. Reservations are recommended.

The matinees for student groups feature a backstage tour, a chance to learn choreography and an opportunity to get autographs. The matinees are open to everyone. Reservations are required.

The cost is $16 a person for groups of 10 or more people; $17 a person for smaller groups.

A toy drive is planned to collect toys for children in Haiti, the setting for the play.

Information: 410-997-9352.

50+ Center sets holiday brunch

The East Columbia 50+ Center will hold a holiday brunch and jazz concert from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Dec. 9.

Live music will be sponsored by Harmony of the Sol, Zeta Alpha Sigma Columbia Chapter and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity.

Tickets are $10. Holiday door prizes are planned.

Information: 410-313-7680.

Around Town

Seeking volunteers -- The A-OK (Assisting Our Kids) mentoring and tutoring program, a project of Oakland Mills Interfaith Center, is recruiting and training volunteers to work in elementary and middle schools with individual children and small groups. Opportunities are available during school hours, after school and in elementary school homework clubs. No specific skills are required; volunteers should be willing to commit to one hour a week during the school year. Chaya Kaplan, 410- 730-6030, or Joe Willmott, 410- 730-0229.

Chamber ballet -- Columbia Chamber Ballet, the performing company of Ballet With Cindee Velle of Long Reach, will offer a series of abbreviated Nutcracker performances for all ages. The one-hour production includes a battle scene with mice, soldiers, and the Nutcracker and the Mouse Queen. The group will perform at 4 p.m. today at Stonehouse in Long Reach Village Center, 8775 Cloudleap Court (reservations are required; 410-730-8113).

50+ Center -- East Columbia 50+ Center in the east Columbia library, 6600 Cradlerock Way, will offer a Harmonize Exercise class from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Mondays and Wednesdays. 410-313-7680.

Bridge for advanced players is offered from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesdays. No fee. Reservations are requested. Barbara Dudzinsky, 410-313-7680.

Reflexology - deep foot massage - is available between 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Mondays. The cost is $40 for a 50-minute treatment. Appointments also are available between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Fridays.

Jesse Barnes, dancer and fitness trainer, will teach soul line-dancing from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays. The cost is $4 a class. Wear comfortable clothes and shoes. Registration is continuing.

Tai chi will be offered from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Thursdays. The cost is $6. 410-313-7680.`Polar Express' -- Oakland Mills Community Association will present a participatory reading of The Polar Express, the classic children's story by Chris Van Allsburg, at 6:30 p.m. Thursday and 7 p.m. Friday in the Loft at The Other Barn in Oakland Mills Village Center. Children, who are invited to wear pajamas, will board an imaginary train and hear the story; refreshments will be served. Santa will board the train when it arrives at the North Pole and give each child a "first gift of Christmas," as happens in the story. Tickets, which must be purchased in advance, are $4 for age 1 and older. Infants must sit on the lap of an adult. 410-730-4610.

Martial arts -- Long Reach Community Association will offer martial arts classes Jan. 8 through Feb. 28 at Stonehouse. Classes in three-circle hapkido are based on movement along three circular planes to apply striking, joint-locking, throwing and pressing techniques against hand and weapon attacks. Classes for ages 5 to 11 will be offered from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays; for those ages 12 and older, from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. The cost is $160 for eight weeks. A 5 percent discount is offered to those living on Columbia Association-assessed property. 410-730-8113.

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