Local activist steers us to the latest in Annapolis [Elkridge]

Howard Johnson, president of the Greater Elkridge Community Association, is all about making a difference, bettering our neighborhoods and improving the quality of life in our community.

Johnson wants you to know there is a nonprofit organization in Maryland that encourages residents to become better informed about what bills are on the table in Annapolis.

The newly designed General Assembly website provides a glimpse of thousands of bills. Maryland Legislative Watch has set up direct email links to the committee members who are responsible for addressing specific issues. All you have to do is write a brief message; it couldn't be any easier.

Johnson asks, "Please take a little time over the next few weeks to check in and comment on those bills that affect you and your neighbors. For bills that aren't getting a lot of media exposure, I've had delegates say, when just a handful of people email a committee about one bill, the members take notice."

Please check out the site at mdlegwatch.wordpress.com/. You just might discover the community activist within and, you too, can make a difference for the good of all.

The Elkridge Heritage Society will meet on Tuesday, March 12, at the Brumbaugh House, 5825 Main St., Elkridge, at 7 p.m. The meeting is open to members, guests and anyone interested in joining the group.

The guest speaker will be Betsy McMillion, former executive director of the Patapsco Heritage Greenway, speaking on the history of villages in the Patapsco River Valley.

Also, make a note to attend the group's May meeting on Tuesday, May 14, and hear guest speaker Fred Dorsey on the history of Belmont. The Heritage Society is also in the planning stages of its annual fundraiser, A Brumbaugh Barbeque, slated for Saturday, June 8, which will feature beer and wine tastings, great food and an opportunity to support a great local organization.

The society's website (www.elkridgeheritage.org) lists these and other events set to take place in the coming year. The site also features a print of an original watercolor of Troy Hill, by a well-known Elkridge artist, the late Florence Bahr, which has been posted for sale. You can check out this beautiful piece of history at elkridgeheritage.org/product/fine-art-troy-hill/.

The Elkridge Adult Athletic Association, a proud Elkridge community supporter for over 30 years, is now accepting applications from area high school seniors for its 2013 scholarship awards. Applications will be accepted until April 21.

More information about the scholarship and the application process is on the EAAA Facebook page or from Jeff Lockard at 410-796-8088 or jeff.w.lockard@gmail.com.

If you have a desire to make a positive environmental impact in your own backyard, the Patapsco Heritage Greenway needs you! Here are just a few of their upcoming projects:

Attend the CSI "Creek Scene Investigation" workshop, Saturday, March 9 (rain date: March 10), at Herbert Run, off Shelbourne Avenue in Arbutus, 1-3 p.m. This outside workshop will teach participants how to determine water quality. This training program is for adults only. Participants may register at http://www.patapscoheritagegreenway/eventcal.html.

New members are welcome and encouraged to attend the next TGIF (This Garbage Is Finished) team event. It will take place at Herbert Run (near 1239 Birch Ave., Arbutus) on Friday, March 15, 1-4 p.m., and will focus on tree maintenance, invasive plant removal and stream cleanup in this targeted watershed area. For more information or to participate, email betsy@patapscoheritagegreenway.org.

Then, on Saturday, March 16 (rain date Sunday, March 17), please join the PHG for the Miller Run Stream Cleanup in Catonsville. Location details TBA, but the time has been slated for 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Participants may register at http://www.patapscoheritagegreenway/eventcal.html.

There's still time to participate in the Rocky on the Run 5k Run/Walk on Saturday, March 23, to benefit the Rockburn Elementary School PTA. Proceeds will support student-focused school programs that promote caring, kindness, and good citizenship.

Safety marshals will be stationed along the course and there will be a water station at the halfway point. Race packets can be picked up Thursday, March 21, 6-8 p.m., at Road Runner, 6630C Marie Curie Drive, Elkridge.

Note — inline skates, bikes and pets are not allowed; strollers are welcome. Pre-race activities include a warm-up by Pat Emery's Basic Training. Registration is $25 (adults); $15 (kids 10 and under); parking is available at the Lyndwood Shopping Center. To register, go to http://www.active.com/running/elkridge-md/rocky-on-the-run-5k-run-walk-2013. Note — you cannot register on the date of the event.

Please let me know what you'd like to share in this space with your friends and neighbors; I'd love to hear about it and pass on your events, birthdays, anniversaries, news, accolades and any other achievements.

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