50 yards 50 states mows through Linthicum

A passion for teaching lawnmower safety, combined with a love of helping others inspired Rodney Smith Jr. of Raising Men Lawn Care Service, to begin cutting lawns across the country.

Since May 14, Smith has mowed lawns in 19 states as part of his 50 States 50 Lawns initiative. On Tuesday, he visited Linthicum and the cut the grass of long-time residents Joseph and Mary Gruzinski.

Smith, who lives in Huntsville, Alabama, was inspired to begin his free lawncare mission in 2015 after he saw an elderly man struggling to cut his grass. Smith stopped and helped the senior and decided that night he would do the same for the disabled and elderly, along with veterans and single mothers.

The Gruzinski family, who has lived in their Linthicum home since 1980, met the guidelines. Joseph, an Air Force veteran, and his wife aren’t able to care for their lawn because of medical difficulties. Their neighbor, Megan Hutsell, reached out to Smith about cutting the elderly couple’s lawn.

“I’ve been following him for over a year because I think it’s an admirable thing he’s doing,” said Hutsell. “He came through last summer and I had him cut their grass.”

Funded by donations, Smith returned again this year to trim the lawn.

“I can barely walk,” said Gruzinski. “We are very appreciative.”

Smith will continue to travel across the country until he hits all 50 states. He is also visiting schools and organizations to spread the word about lawncare safety and the importance of giving back to the community.

Along with providing free lawn care service, Smith also encourages children to take part in his initiative by signing up for his 50 Yard Challenge. Those who participate will receive T-shirts each time they cut 10 lawns for free. Once they reach 50, the Raising Men Lawn Care team will cut a few lawns with them and will give the winners free lawnmowers, provided by Briggs and Stratton.

“I’m trying to spread the word about free lawncare service, so, what better way to do it than to hit the road and inspire more kids to join our 50 Yard Challenge?” said Smith.

Averaging a state per day, Smith will continue his journey across the country, hoping to inspire and encourage others to give back to their communities and help those who need it.

Visit WeAreRaisingMen.com for more information about Smith and the 50 Yards 50 States initiative.

100 Gifted Men and Boys Luncheon

The United Methodist Men and Missions and Outreach Committee of St. John United Methodist Church will sponsor the 100 Gifted Men and Boys Luncheon Saturday, noon-3 p.m., at the church (6019 Belle Grove Road in Pumphrey) Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under.

Contact Raymond Johnson at (443) 474-6448 or Marcel Smith at (443) 422-7190 for more information.

Brooklyn Heights Improvement Club Association

The Brooklyn Heights Improvement Club Association will meet Monday at 7 p.m. at Brooklyn Park Library, 1 E. 11th Ave. Several candidates who are running in the upcoming primary election will be on-hand to introduce themselves. A police officer from the Northern District will also attend the meeting to give an update and answer questions.

Call Sylvia Poore at (410) 725-9193 for more information.

Coffee With a Cop

Paradise Donuts, 501 S. Camp Meade Road in Linthicum, and the Northern Anne Arundel County Chamber of Commerce, will host Coffee With a Cop June 13 at 7:30 a.m., at the donut shop. Attendees are invited to meet and talk with officers who serve the community. Call (410) 487-6969 for more information.

Summer Concert Series

The Taxpayers’ Improvement Association of Patapsco Park Inc. (Pumphrey), and its board of directors, will host their second Summer Concert Series, beginning June 15, at Pumphrey Park, Belle Grove Road and School Lane.

The series will begin with Melody in the Park, by the Serenity Band of Baltimore. On Aug. 24, the concert Dance in the Park will take place. The series concludes Sept. 21, with Heart and Soul of the Park, by Estelle Delaware and friends.

Concerts begin at 6 p.m. Attendees are invited to bring blankets, lawn chairs and picnic baskets. Grills, alcohol and illegal substances are prohibited.

For information, contact Owen Langford Jr., at (410) 636-4707 or Geraldine Bates at (410) 636-9160.

Roland Terrace Democratic Club

The Roland Terrace Democratic club, 619 Matthews Ave. in Brooklyn Park, will hold a celebration in honor of its 69th anniversary June 23, 2-6 p.m. Tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door for this catered event that will feature a one-pound shrimp platter, along with hamburgers, hot dogs, salad, drinks and dessert.

Club meetings are held on the first and third Mondays of each month and bingo is offered each Thursday. Both begin at 7 p.m. and are open to the public. Bingo door packages are available for $10 and $13.

For tickets and information, contact club president Scott Harman at (240) 372-7813, treasurer Jim Smith at (410) 761-4853 or Rita Ketchum at (410) 969-7449.

Email your North County news from Brooklyn Park, Pumphrey and Linthicum to Heather Vecchioni at northcountygazette@gmail.com.

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