Earth-friendly spirit prevails at Mount View Middle School

The results are in: Mount View Middle School rocked its Green Field Day on April 24.

Not only did the students raise $1,500 for the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore — and get to slime Assistant Principal Linda Monti as a reward — but they also beautified the outside of the school and learned about a variety of ecological topics while having fun.

Susan Mako, the coordinating teacher, explained that five eighth-grade students first conceived of Green Field Day in 2011; and students continue to research, plan and help run the event. For instance, the Environmental Club created a new native plant garden outside the recess doors, and more than two dozen students signed up to plant and mulch all of the school's gardens.

The Student Government Association designed and led a reduce-reuse-recycle obstacle course; a pair of Advanced Inquiry and Innovation students designed a Lorax Hunt; and 19 students worked as event captains.

Mako said, "We're proud of our students' enthusiasm to take charge of the day."

Congratulations Mount View community, on a successful Green Field Day!

And away they go! Our local skies will again provide the backdrop for the Preakness Celebration Hot Air Balloon Festival, Thursday, May 16, through Saturday, May 18, at Turf Valley in Ellicott City. The event is free, family-friendly and a must for anyone who is mesmerized by the kaleidoscopic beauty of hot air balloons.

In addition to balloon launches at 6 p.m. May 16 and 17, and 6 a.m. May 17 and 18, the following festival activities will take place 4 to 9 p.m. May 16 and 17: tethered hot air balloon rides, pilot demonstrations, walk-throughs of an inflated hot air balloon, and nightly "balloon glows" at dusk.

The celebration will also feature live entertainment, a variety of family activities; and handmade craft, retail and food vendors. Balloon rides will be available for a fee; to book a flight, call Ron Broderick at 410-442-5566.

All parking will take place at the Howard County Fairgrounds, 2210 Howard County Fair Road, in West Friendship, for a $5 donation per vehicle. These funds will benefit the Elkridge Adult Athletic Association. For more information, call the Turf Valley Special Events Hotline at 410-465-1500, Ext. 2874.

Terry Jubb, spokesperson for the Glenelg United Methodist Church Food Pantry, would like to thank Boy Scout Troop 707 for collecting more than 700 pounds of food during last month's Scouting for Food drive. Additionally, the Glenwood Middle School Leo Club held a paper-product drive at the school's Midnight Madness event in March and stocked the pantry shelves with toilet paper, napkins and paper towels.

Because of the community's generosity, The pantry's biggest need this month is monetary donations.

The Food Pantry will be open Saturday, May 18, from 9 to 11 a.m. For more information, call the church office at 410-489-7260, or email

Oenophiles will be happy to learn that local wine events do not end with Columbia's Wine in the Woods. On May 23, the Howard County Conservancy will host its annual Wine in the Garden fundraiser from 5 to 8 p.m., at 10520 Old Frederick Road (Route 99), in Woodstock.

Come sample fine wine and food from local establishments while strolling through the conservancy's beautiful gardens and listening to live bluegrass music. A silent auction will feature artwork and getaways.

Tickets cost $40 through Sunday, May 19; $50 after that date. To purchase them online or view the silent auction items, go to Call 410-465-8877 with any questions.

May 23, marks the date for the next Community Feast at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church. Stop by between 6 and 8 p.m. to load your plate with a meal, donated by Smokin' Hot Bar & Grille. Carryout containers are available for those who prefer their food "to go."

The meal cost $9 per person or $30 maximum per family; kids, 5 and younger, eat for free. This month's proceeds will help purchase supplies and construction materials for the church's summer mission trip to Irvine, Ky., where the congregants will rebuild homes. To learn more, call Lynne Quinn at 410-442-5445.

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