Christmas Gingerbread House Contest

The Crosslife Community Church's third annual Christmas Gingerbread House Contest was held at the Elkridge Volunteer Fire Department Dec. 3. There was a great deal of competition this year with 41 entries submitted to the judges! The winners of the three categories were: Kathryn Cooley for The Christmas Spirit Award; Timothy Mackall for The Most Delicious House; and Ben Whiting for The Engineering Award, from left. (Submitted photo / December 15, 2011)

Don't miss the holiday tour of the historic Grace Episcopal Church Tuesday, Dec. 27, 7 p.m., at 5805 Main St. This event, sponsored by the Elkridge Heritage Society and Grace Episcopal Church, will offer refreshments at the Brumbaugh House immediately following the tour. Join them for a delightful evening of local history in this beautiful church. Bring a Friend!

The Elkridge Landing Middle School Students of the Month of November were selected by their teachers for consistently demonstrating Honesty, which means they consistently were truthful in words and deeds, admitted mistakes, and make it a daily practice not to cheat, steal or deceive.

The sixth-grade honorees are: Stephen Armstrong, Alec Beehan, Abel Grijalva, Abby Mumper and Zoe Williams. The seventh-grade honorees are: Natalie Acker, Logan Filler, Johnny Merson, Cameron Robinson and Jessica Yieger. The eighth-grade honorees are: Anna Clary, Collin Hinkle, Miles Coleman, Rupam Mondal and Mattie Yoncha.

Congratulations!


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Chef Dan Wecker, owner and chef of the Elkridge Furnace Inn, was recently recognized and honored by the "Heart of America" for his excellence as a chef and for his contributions to the community.

As a reward for this esteemed honor, Chef Dan was given the opportunity to select a school to receive 350 new books, and he selected Elkridge Elementary School because his two sons, Mathias and Cameron, have very fond memories of their formative education at Elkridge.

On Dec. 13th, Wecker and Heart of America arrived at the school where he spent time reading aloud to Debbie Hurlock's and Diana Andrew's classes. Representatives from Heart of America brought in the new books for distribution. All kindergarten and 1st grade students received books

Many thanks to reading paraeducator Susan Lavin for providing this wonderful news about Wecker and his contribution on behalf of his own children's fond memories at Elkridge Elementary.

CrossLife Community Church hosted its third annual Christmas Gingerbread House Contest Dec. 10 at the Elkridge Fire Hall.

"We had a great time, 41 houses were in the contest and we had winner and honorable mentions in each category!," event coordinator Michelle Mackall said.

In "The Most Delicious House: The One You Just Can't Wait to Eat" category, the winner was Timothy Mackall; honorable mention awards went to Phillip McAdoo and Chesapeake Dowdy; "The Christmas Spirit Award: The House the Showed the True Meaning of Christmas" went to Kathryn Cooley with honorable mention to the team of Kyle Mackall and David Eastman and to Megan Oberech; and "The Engineering Award: The House with the Best Construction and Design" was awarded to Ben Whiting, and honorable mentions to Michael Cook and Zackary Orsini.

A big note of thanks goes out to the judges: Elkridge Landing Middle School Principal Gina Cash, Rockburn Elementary Technology Teacher Rebecca Pfenninger and Elkridge Elementary art teacher Timothy Caughy. Crosslife Church would also like to extend their sincere gratitude to Green Valley Market for their contribution of reusable Grocery bags as gift bag for each participating family and for the foam trays on which the gingerbread creators built their houses.

Also, note that Crosslife Community Church is having its Christmas Eve service at 4 p.m. at the Grace Episcopal Parish Hall on Montgomery Road. All are welcome to attend and celebrate "the reason for the season!"

Here are some of the great Elkridge Senior Center events to ink into your calendar for January of 2012. A "Matter of Balance" will be help from Jan. 18-March 7. Cost is $23 per person. It is a wonderful class offered by the Howard County Office on Aging and is designed to keep you safe on your feet, avoid falls and stay active.

"New Year/New You" is the perfect way to begin 2012 by taking a good personal inventory. What would make you happier and healthier? Share your thoughts and help yourself and others become all they can be! This enlightening day will be held Jan. 9 and costs $2 per person for participation. Light refreshments will be served. Call the center at 410-313-5192 to register.

A brand new year is a great time to learn something new! Stimulate your mind with the exciting world of computers at the Elkridge Senior Center's "Introductory Computer Classes" Jan. 9, 10, 17 and 18. These classes are offered at $40 per session, and you must register to participate by calling 410-313-5192.

And a great big shout out to Barb and Jim Meyers of Elkridge who celebrated a milestone event on a milestone date. The Meyers, lifelong residents of Elkridge, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary Nov. 11 — 11/11/11. Congratulations. We wish them many more years of love and laughter together.

As many former clients, friends and local residents are aware, the long-time business of Elkridge has shuttered its doors. After 40 years, Dennis Chesgreen has closed Shear Brothers.

"I love Elkridge. I thank God and my customers for their support. You all stood by me during my many sports injuries, through my battle with cancer, car accident and open-heart surgery. I am also blessed with my wife of 38 years, three children and four grandchildren. They make my life whole." Chesgreen said. "I would like to thank the many faithful customers of Shear Brothers; I will miss you all. Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and God Bless."

We wish the best of luck to Dennis in all future endeavors.

A new chapter of NarATeen — an organization specifically for teenagers affected by someone else's drug or alcohol use — meets every Monday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Sheppard Pratt, 4100 College Ave., in Ellicott City (in the Rotunda).

The meetings are free, anonymous and open to any teenager troubled by the drug or alcohol use of a family member or friend. The meetings follow an open discussion format, and every attendee has the opportunity to speak if he/she wishes.

All meetings are supervised by adult volunteers from Nar-Anon (a worldwide fellowship for those affected by someone else's addiction); parents and adult caregivers are not permitted to attend the meetings.

For more information and directions, call David at 410-218-0358.

There are many sentiments shared about Christmas; some are sincere and and heart-felt, as Roy Smith once noted, "He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree." And, I personally love this concept: Bernard Manning said one year he bought his kids a set of batteries for Christmas with a sticker on it saying, "Toy Not Included." But, in my opinion, the true spirit of Christmas comes from one of the most beloved children's author of all times, Dr. Seuss: "Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more! And what happened then? Well, in Whoville they say, that the Grinch's small heart grew three sizes that day! And, at that minute, his heart didn't feel quite so tight…" Merry Christmas, Everyone!