Community Notes


August 28, 2008

Grandparents as Parents set to meet Sept. 10

Grandparents As Parents, a support group for grandparents raising their grandchildren, will meet from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sept. 10 at the Bain Center, 5470 Ruth Keeton Way, Columbia.

The discussion topic is "Helping Your Child Succeed in School." Free child care is provided; reservations are required.

The group offers information on services and financial assistance and an opportunity to meet other grandparents raising children.

Information: 410-313-1940.

County ride-sharing

Howard County Executive Ken Ulman has announced a new internal RideShare Program for Howard County government employees. Those interested can go to the internal intranet to complete a registration form; the program will match registrants with other employees interested in joining a car pool. Residents who are not government employees can also take advantage of the RideShare Program.

The program, which offers a chance to calculate how much employees spend on commuting and how much they will save by carpooling, is part of the county's effort to address rising fuel costs and promote a more sustainable environment.

Last month, in an effort to help employees conserve energy and save on fuel costs, the county executive introduced a flexible work schedule.

Information:, under "What's New."

An Obama get-together

Howard County Councilman Calvin Ball, Young Democrats of Howard County, and Howard County for Obama will meet from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. today at the Greene Turtle, 8872 McGaw Road, Columbia, to watch Sen. Barrack Obama's acceptance speech for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Information: 410-218-1060.

Golf tourney is Sept. 15

Hobbit's Glen Golf Club will be host for the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum's "Fourth Annual More Than a Game Golf Tournament" on Sept. 15. The tournament will be in a scramble format, with an 8:30 a.m. shotgun start.

The cost is $125 and includes greens fees for 18 holes with a golf cart, continental breakfast, refreshments on the course, a buffet lunch and gifts. A competition and prizes for Morgan State University alumni are planned.

The event will benefit the museum's youth programs and expanded exhibits.

The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum in Baltimore has welcomed more than 1.3 million visitors since 1999.

Registration is requested by Saturday. Information or registration: Octavia Pratt, 410-563-3404, Ext. 15.

The impact of stormwater

Columbia residents are invited to share ideas and concerns about the impact of stormwater on the Columbia watershed. Suggestions are needed on stream water quality, protecting the tree canopy, improving biological diversity and reducing pollutants emptied into the Chesapeake Bay.

Residents are also asked to notify the Columbia Association of any locations where flooding, erosion, runoff or a pile-up of debris has been observed.

Comments can run up to 250 words and must be submitted by Sept. 15.

Blood donations sought

The Red Cross of the Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Blood Services Region is urging donors to help replenish Maryland's blood supply, which has dropped below what is considered safe and adequate.

The region relies on community blood donors to supply at least 1,000 units a day to meet the needs of hospital patients.

The Red Cross holds about 35 blood drives in the region every day. A single blood donation can save up to three lives, according to a Red Cross news release.

Information or to schedule a donation: 800-GIVE LIFE.

Columbia plan to be focus

The Howard County Citizens Association will sponsor a panel discussion, "Columbia Downtown: A Community Response to the Master Plan," at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 10 at Oakland Manor, 5430 Vantage Point Road, Columbia.

Activists Alan Klein, Jud Malone and Alex Hekimian will talk about General Growth Properties' proposal for development of Columbia's downtown. The public is invited to participate in the discussion.

The draft master plan is available at

Information about the citizens association: 443-283-3967, or

'Earth' event is canceled

The "Save the Earth" event that was to have been sponsored by the Columbia Association's Teen and Middle School Advisory Committee, scheduled for Sept. 27, has been canceled.

Information on future events sponsored by the committee: Carol Wasser, 410-715-5523.

Take a trip to France

The Columbia Association's Culture and Cuisine Exchange is offering a travel opportunity for Columbia residents to Cergy-Pontoise, France. The exchange, scheduled from Oct. 17 to 29, will take place in two parts: the first in Cergy-Pontoise, outside Paris; the second in the south of France.

During the first part of the trip, participants will stay with families, attend cooking classes and wine- and cheese-tasting sessions, take tours and visit a French market. The second part will take place in Toulon, where visitors will dine on traditional cuisine, tour two wineries and visit Marseille and Aix-en-Provence.

Applications must be returned by tomorrow. The cost is $3,900 to $4,400, depending on hotel room occupancy and participation in cooking classes. To download applications:

Information or to request an application by e-mail, Meredith Jaffe, 410-715-3162, or Meredith.

Disaster preparedness

The Volunteer Center Serving Howard County, in cooperation with the Community Emergency Response Network, is recruiting people to work with local nonprofit and government agencies for disaster preparedness and recovery.

Information: 410-715-3179.

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