Personally, I'm a "mutt" person. Our dog Sydney is, well, I'm not sure what kind of dog she is and, when I took her to see Dr. John Cunningham at the Highland Veterinary Hospital, he wasn't sure either.

Suffice it to say that she is a wonderful, obedient, loving (and heavy shedder) dog that Jennie and I dearly love. Now, I don't have anything against pure breeds, although they do seem to have more than their fair share of medical problems.

However, if you are looking for a pet, look no further than your local animal shelter. One local shelter had a booth at the last Highland Day celebration that took place Oct. 1. Frisky's Wildlife and Primate Sanctuary, in Woodstock, could be found in the foyer of HVH where Julia Dagnello stayed warm and dry with several of Frisky's adoptable pets.

Janice Ellis, administrative assistant for the sanctuary, said "it was a great opportunity for the people of Highland to meet out available pets and to learn more about (the) Sanctuary."


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Janice would like to thank Dr. Cunningham and his entire staff for making Julia feel "at home."

Wow! Lime Kiln Middle School has gone really high-tech in their TV studio. The Parent Teacher Association purchased an "awesome accessory to enhance our daily TV show. It's called a 'chromakey' and enables the 50-student crew to use a green screen for its video productions. Is that cool or what!?

You can thank Lime Kiln's PTA, Norm Belden, Andrea Keating, Larry Greenblatt and Ben Finkel for getting the job done. Kudos!

The Lime Kiln Students of the Week that ended Oct. 7 are, in no particular order: Kayla Pendell, Austin Adamczyk, Finlay Hynes, Jaimie Devlin, Harrison Chappell, Madison Craney, Hannah Goldstein, Jake Davis and Katie Cardea.

It's time to start thinking about next year's garden and what better way is there than to become a "master gardener" by signing up for the annual master gardener training. The classes "cover plant, insect and disease problems, and a variety of other topics related to sustainable and environmental impacts of gardening practices". The cost for the training is $195 and December 16 is the sign-up deadline. Training takes place on Wednesdays starting on January 25 through March 28 with an orientation meeting scheduled for January 23 from 10 a.m. until noon. All class meetings are to be held at the Extension Office in Ellicott City. Remember: class size is limited so sign up early. To get your MG registration packet, call the University of Md. Extension office at 410-313-2707. Let Ms. Georgia Eacker, MG coordinator, know that you heard about it in this column.

Hallowe'en is almost upon us and that means ghosts, goblins and trick-or-treatin'. And corn mazes. A really good maze can be found not far away in Glenwood, at one of the Mullinix fields. The theme for this year is "Take a Crack At the Crab!" with the corn rows cut into the shape of a gigantic 10-acre crab. The maze is located 0.75 mile west of Md. Rt. 97 on Carrs Mill Road, across from the Western Regional Park. Admission to the maze is $9 for adults, kids ages 3 to 11 are $7 and children under 3 free. For group rates, call 410-245-6146. The maze is open Fridays from 3 to 10 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Don't forget to bring your flashlight for the Friday night trek! In addition to the maze, you will find a kiddie straw-bale maze, a corn pit and hay rides. Tell them you read it in this column (you won't get anything extra but it'll let them know where you heard about them).

The music department at Reservoir High School is hosting its annual Fall Concert on Wednesday, October 26. I believe the concert starts at 7 p.m. The theme for the concert is "Monsters". There's no admission charge but it is requested that you bring a non-perishable food item. Mr. Rob Dice, my go-to guy at RHS, wrote to me that the Howard County Food Bank would be where the donated items will be taken. So, come on out, support your local high school and, at the same time, help out those who are in need by bringing (a shopping bag full of) foodstuffs. Also, on that Saturday evening, October 29, from 7 to 10 p.m., the RHS Marching Band is hosting "Music in Motion" at the RHS stadium. Tickets are: $8 in advance/ $10 at the gate; senior citizens, $8; students: $5 and children 6 and under, free. For advance ticket purchases, contact Ms. Paula Gallagher at 443-812-9486; or, via e-mail at paulamgall@aol.com.

Well, that's all for this week. Commit a random act of kindness. Look in on your neighbors. Say a prayer for our troops who are serving in harm's way and remember their families too.