For 15 years, Saundra Owens worked during the day at Social Security Administration, came home to make 60 sandwiches for the kids at the after-school program she ran at a local church, then went to coach basketball until 10 p.m.
The kids in the Banneker rec basketball program dubbed her the "Queen of Basketball."
"Basketball teaches life skills; unity, commitment, physical strength, how to win and how to lose," said Owens, who was recently elected president on the Catonsville Recreation and Parks Council's Executive Board.
Owens had served as the board's secretary for four years and as a volunteer with the Banneker Kings program since 1989.
"I have kids that I coached as 6-year-olds now bringing their kids to play," she said. "My goal is to help all Catonsville rec programs leave a legacy for the kids in the community."
Originally from Philadelphia, Owens moved to Catonsville in 1989. She remembers when the basketball program began in the "den" at then-Western Vo-Tech. The program has grown each year and now several hundred kids play each week at Western Tech, Catonsville Middle School, Westowne Elementary School, the Banneker Community Center and the Bloomsbury Field House.
As president, she said her goal is to increase participation in the rec council meetings and encourage more young people to get involved.
"My aim is to keep the tradition of Catonsville Recreation growing," said Owens, who has six grandsons and two granddaughters.
For more information on Catonsville rec programs, go to http://www.catonsvillerec.org.
More good sports
While fans of pro lacrosse may recognize attackman Brendan Mundorf of the Denver Outlaws as the 2012 Bud Light Major League Lacrosse Most Valuable Player, fans of helping the sport grow know him as one of the founders of a club lacrosse program, Bitmore Lacrosse.
Mundorf played for Mount St. Joseph High School and then the University of Maryland, Baltimore County before going pro. He was chosen MLL MVP by a vote of the league's eight head coaches and general managers.
He and Catonsville High School lacrosse coach Aaron Stubb started the club lacrosse program for boys to play in the under-9, under-11 and under-13 age groups.
According to the program's website, the two said that while practice and discipline got them to where they are today and it's great that young players are playing year round, the ratio of practices to tournaments is out of balance.
They fear that when young players play in four to five tournaments during the summer, often following a full spring season, they tend to burn out. They either lose interest in the sport or develop bad habits. Mundorf and Stubb want to change that by emphasizing practice and physical training in preparation for one fall tournament and two or three competitive summer tournaments sandwiched around the spring season.
Way to go Megan Peercy, Rachel Weker, Amy Nelson and Tracy Horch for their impressive showing in the first Iron Girl Rocky Gap women's triathlon on Sept. 8.
They joined approximately 2,400 other women for the 1/2 -mile swim, 16-mile bike ride and three-mile run near Lake Habeeb in Flintstone.
"We really had a wonderful time," said Megan, a mother of three. "It's a great way for women to get in shape and bond with each other.
"We were so lucky and had beautiful fall weather that day, especially since the day before it poured rain and was windy," she said.
"For me, getting over my nerves about doing the open water swim part was a big accomplishment, and Rachel and Amy really convinced me that I could do it," she said. "I would do it again!"
Coming and going
Catonsville High graduate Shawn Peters will be coming to town next month as one of 15 authors for the 7th Annual Words and Wine Event at the Catonsville Library.
Peters, who grew up in Catonsville and is now a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, wrote "The Catonsville Nine: A Story of Faith and Resistance in the Vietnam Era."
"The Catonsville Library was a favorite spot of mine as a kid, and my mom worked there for several years as a volunteer," he said.
Tickets for the Oct. 19 event are $25 and available at the Catonsville Library or at the door. Proceeds will be used to conserve historic documents in the Catonsville Room.
The former Sterling Ashton Schwab Funeral Home, at 736 Edmondson Ave., has finally been sold after several years on the market.
The Church of the Good Shepherd is moving from Howard County and will use the space as a congregational meeting place.
The Catonsville landmark, built in the 1860's, had served as a private residence until it became a funeral home.
Going to new heights
Max Dell proposed to Cassie Krause in a hot air balloon this summer.
"It was wonderful," said Cassie, age 25, who always wanted to ride in a hot air balloon.
Max remembers her mentioning that a year ago and started saving up for the expense. He concocted a plan that involved his pretending to buy a raffle ticket for a hot air balloon ride, told Cassie he won and brought the ballon operator in on the secret.
They took off from Taylorsville in Carroll County and landed in Howard County where both sets of parents met them on the ground with a champagne toast.
The couple currently live in Mt. Ridge Apartments and have put a contract in on a house in Academy Heights.
Their wedding is planned for next September.
Catonsville coaches and parents involved in youth sports should consider the free Positive Coaching Alliance Workshop on Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. in Catonsville High School's auditorium. Coaches from the Catonsville rec program will offer valuable lessons on how to raise player performance, on and off the field. The two-hour program will provide tools to assist coaches in effectively coaching and relating to their players. For information or to sign up, email email@example.com.
Got a car to show off? Bring it to the Oct. 21 Catonsville Historic National Road Collector Car Show at Catonsville Baptist Church, 1004 Frederick Road. The Sunday event, 3-6:30 p.m. is free and open to the public. Activities include pumpkin painting, balloon animals, moon bounce, puppets, music, and free food, including hot dogs, hamburgers and desserts.
Check out the Zumba at Bloomsbury Latin-inspired dance fitness party at Bloomsbury Community Center, 106 Bloomsbury Ave., Mondays and Thursdays at 7 p.m. To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to http://www.zumbawarriorprincess.com.
Salem Lutheran Church, 905 Frederick Road, hosts its annual Market Place on Nov. 3. The Market Place includes a silent auction, hand-crafted items, Fair Trade items and used books/CDs/DVDs. There will also be lunch items and a baked goods table. Proceeds are donated to a local charity, a national charity and to an international charity. In addition, a hand-crafted afghan will be raffled off with all proceeds going to the Catonsville Emergency Food Ministry.