Chocolate Festival Hosted by the Church of the Resurrection. To benefit its Palestinian sister church, Mary, Mother of Sorrow, in the West Bank. Featuring cake, cheesecake, pie, candy, cookies, brownies and more, along with demonstrations, children's activities, raffles and pizza. 1-3 p.m. Oct. 1, Church of The Resurrection, 3175 Paulskirk Dr., Ellicott City. $2 entry with two samples; $0.50 each addition sample. 410-461-2040.

North Laurel Civic Association First Picnic Featuring food, games, raffle, music and dancing, patriotism and socializing. 12:30 p.m. Oct. 9, High Ridge Park, 10100 Superior Ave., Laurel. Voluntary donation. 410-313-4700.


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Friends of Grassroots Fall Flea Market To benefit the Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center. 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 1, Locust United Methodist Church, 8105 Martin Road,. Attendees: free; vendors: $25 per space. 410-531-5323.

Fifth Annual St. James' Episcopal Church Basket Raffle and Silent Auction Hosted by and to benefit the St. James Episcopal Church. Held during the Mount Airy Fall Fest. Featuring about 50 themed baskets. Winning tickets will be drawn Oct. 3, starting at 9 a.m. Winners need not be present and will be notified by phone. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 1-2, St. James Thrift Shop, 234 S. Main St., Mount Airy. 410-489-9323.

Second Annual Maggie J. Brown Memorial Golf Tournament Hosted by the Columbia Association. To benefit the Columbia Foundation's Maggie J. Brown Fund. The 18-hole scramble tournament will also include catered lunch and dinner; contests; and a 50/50 raffle. Open to the public. Price includes tournament fees, lunch and dinner. Net proceeds from the event will go to the Columbia Foundation's Maggie J. Brown Fund. Rain date is Oct. 15. 9:30 a.m. Oct. 1, Fairway Hills Golf Club, 10221 Wincopin Circle, Columbia. $100. 410-730-7840.

Second Annual Fitness Challenge Sponsored by Max Muscle Columbia, in partnership with Capital One and The Red Devils. Hosting its second annual fitness challenge to benefit the Red Devils Charity. The event will benefit local Baltimore-area women battling breast cancer. 8 a.m. Oct. 2, Max Muscle Sports Nutrition, 6476 Dobbin Center Way, Suite 300, Columbia. $25. 443-542-9885.


Prenatal Exercise Offered by the Howard County General Hospital Wellness Center. Presents a class that will feature gentle stretching and light exercise to condition birth muscles and enhance delivery. Taught by a certified instructor. Participants must receive their physician's permission to participate. Registration required. 6:30-7:30 p.m. Sept. 29, Oct. 6, Howard County General Hospital Wellness Center, 10710 Charter Drive, Columbia. $88. 410-740-7601.

Reiki I Workshop Learn Japanese energy healing and earn your Reiki I certificate. Learn how to handle stress better and heal yourself, work on yourself, children, pets, loved ones; also great for cancer and chronic disease support givers. Registration required. 11:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 1, Phelps Luck Neighborhood Center, 5355 Phelps Luck Drive, Columbia. $150. 410-997-2018.

Widowed Persons/Life Partner Grief Support Group Hosted by the Gilchrist Hospice Care-Howard County Office. Allows the participants the opportunity to give and receive support and understanding while exploring the meaning and process of grief. Meets for six consecutive Tuesdays, Sept. 20-Oct. 25. Registration required. 6:30-8 p.m. Oct. 4, Gilchrist Hospice Care, Howard County, 5537 Twin Knolls Road, Suite 433, Columbia. For all ages. Free. 410-730-5072.

Patterns of Change Offered by Move & Change. Presents a wellness class for re-patterning dysfunctional habits, taught by Judith Fischer. Helps with nutritional/exercise habits, self-esteem and a myriad of other habit patterns that can be self-sabotaging. 8-9:30 p.m. Oct. 4, The Yoga Center of Columbia, 8950 State Route 108, Suite 109, Columbia. $96. 410-720-4340.

Mental Illness Awareness Week Educational Forum Sponsored by NAMI Howard County. Presents an education forum in observance of Mental Illness Awareness Week, Oct. 2-8. Speakers include a local professional who self-medicated to cope with undiagnosed bipolar disorder and a mother who lost her daughter because of untreated depression. 7:30 p.m. Oct. 5, Wilde Lake Interfaith Center, 10431 Twin Rivers Road, Columbia. 410-772-9300.


Why Not Toastmasters A nonprofit organization that provides communication and leadership training. Visitors are welcome to attend and learn more about Toastmasters. 11 a.m.-noon Oct. 1, Glen Mar United Methodist Church, 4701 New Cut Road, Ellicott City. 410-379-0133.

Retired Officers' Wives' Club Meeting Holding its monthly luncheon meeting, featuring the big band sounds of The Retro-Rockets, who will play music from the 1950s and 1960s. Friends, neighbors and spouses are invited. Reservations required by Sept. 29. Members can call their area Reservation Committee representative. All others call Betty Wade at 410-551-7082. 11 a.m. Oct. 4, Club Meade, 3354 Crumpton S, Laurel. $15. 10-551-7082.


Salvation Army Holiday Assistance Registration Holding registration for holiday assistance for Howard County residents, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday, Sept. 12-30, with extended hours Tuesdays and Thursdays, until 7 p.m. Past and new clients must bring valid photo ID, Social Security cards for every household member, proof of all income (pay stubs, DSS, child support, food stamp letters), proof of all expenses (BG&E, phone, cable, etc.), proof of residence (Section 8 or HUD, lease, mortgage), birth certificates for all children 0-12-years-old and gift suggestions less than $30 for children. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sept. 29-30, Salvation Army Howard County Service Center, 9017 Red Branch Road, Suite G, Columbia. 443-656-3376.

27th Annual Home Decorator Show Sponsored by Historic Ellicott City Inc. Featuring Holly Manor, a colonial revival estate located on 13 rolling acres in the Maple Lawn area just south of Columbia. Showcase opens with a Preview Party Gala (advanced tickets required). Profits from the Show House will be devoted to education and preservation of Ellicott City's rich historic inventory. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sept. 29, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sept. 30-Oct. 1, noon-5 p.m. Oct. 2, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 4-5, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Oct. 6, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 7-8, noon-5 p.m. Oct. 9, Holly Manor, 8105 Holly Manor Way, Fulton. In advance: $15; at the door: $20. 410-461-6908.