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Spelling aces get their letters in a row at two schools [West Friendship]

This is a love story about words. For it was nothing less than a sumptuous feast of verbiage when the superb spellers of West Friendship Elementary and Mount View Middle School wowed the judges with their love of words.

Twenty-nine 6th, 7th and 8th graders from Mount View Middle participated in their spelling bee on Jan. 16.

Seventh grade student Sarah Yang, was the winner of the competition with her correct spelling of "competitor". First runner up was sixth grade student Hanna Al-Kowsi, who was the first place winner at West Friendship last year.

Volunteer judges included Ellen Flynn Giles from the Board of Education, retired West Friendship Elementary teachers Peggy Dash and Bonnie Inkman and Mount View teachers Theresa Bollard and Keith Janelli. Sarah will represent her school during the countywide bee on March 8 at Reservoir High School.

During the West Friendship Elementary spelling bee on Jan. 24, the winning word was "reactionary," spelled confidently by 4th grade student Ethan Triska. Ethan brought pride to his teacher Melissa Bianchi and his 4th grade classmates. First runner up was Jessica Turner. The sterling spellers will also attend the county wide competition at Reservoir High School on March 8.

Rebecca Miller, reporter for the Hare Raisers 4-H Club, has sent news to share. Club member Amy Bodine, a senior at Glenelg High School, won the Grand Champion State Rabbit Judging Contest, which was held at the Maryland State Fair.

Amy received a $1,100 scholarship from the local Baltimore and Howard Rabbit Club for her outstanding achievement. Amy was among the contestants who judged more than 47 breeds of rabbits, along with completion of written and oral tests on rabbit equipment, care of rabbits and the anatomy of rabbits.

"After five years of competing, I built on the experience and I am excited that all this hard work and practice resulted in the award," said a grateful Amy. "I would like to thank Dr. Wendy Feaga, the organizational leader of Hare Raisers 4-H, for her dedication, patience and hard work, which she shares with the youth of Hare Raisers."

Amy, who is also active in the National Honor Society and acts as a Spanish tutor added, "It is because of Dr. Wendy Feaga that I chose to major in veterinary science in college next year."

If you would like to learn more about or possibly join the Hare Raisers 4-H Club, meetings are held on the second Friday of each month at 7:30 p.m. in the 4-H building at the Howard County fairgrounds.

Want to learn even more about the history of West Friendship? The next meeting of the Howard County Antique Farm Machinery Club is set for Feb. 18, at 7 p.m., in the dining hall at the Howard County Fairgrounds. New members are always welcome to join the group.

Barleyjuice is coming to town. According to the band's website, "Barleyjuice was born out of rock and roll, reared on British Invasion, Country Western and Progressive Rock, and landed somewhere in the North Channel with a penchant for all things Celtic."

The group is scheduled to perform locally at the Sykesville Freedom District Fire Hall on March 2 from 8 to 11 p.m., with doors opening at 7 p.m. The musical event is a fundraiser for the West Friendship and Sykesville Fire departments.

Tickets go fast for this popular group. Interested? Call 1-888-695-0888 or go to for tickets or information.

Mark your calendar for Feb. 28 when the monthly feast at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church is back on schedule with a dine in or carry out menu. The dinner prepared by the chef of "Smokin' Hot Grille" in Glenwood, is served from 6 to 8 p.m. with all proceeds headed to Bridges to Housing Stability. Questions about the dinner? Call Lynne Quinn at 410-292-8202.

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