West Friendship: Sheep and Wool Festival gets a bump from Southern Living

West Friendship made it to the pages of the national magazine Southern Living. Yep. There we are listed in May Events on the travel page with a listing about the 39th Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival on Saturday and Sunday, May 5 and 6 at the Howard County Fairgrounds.

Now around here we already know that this is the event with more than 1,000 sheep from farms as far as Massachusetts, Michigan and beyond. We also know that weavers, artisans, potters, lamb cooks and wool spinners galore will be in town for the festival.

Local 4-H kids have prepared for months and always assist in the clean up after the festival. Local artists such as Becky Moy Behre of Greenbridge Pottery has been loading the pickup with her wares headed toward Barn 4 Booth 9, the usual spot for the potters of Dayton. Authors from as far away as England will be on hand to sign books on a variety of fibre arts and entertainment will be ongoing throughout the two-day event.

As in previous years, members of West Friendship's Living Farm Heritage Museum will assist with parking. I can recall when this sheep and wool festival was a "wee thing" with just a fraction of the vendors compared to the current crop. The festival will be open on May 5 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on May 6 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with events going on all day.

Be warned, though. The popularity of this event is a great thing. The traffic around the intersection of routes 32 and 144 during this weekend have now become as legendary as the festival itself.

It's spring festival at West Friendship Elementary. The annual spring fete and wellness fair is set for Friday, May 4, 4:30-7:30 p.m. This is the annual event which finds the local elementary kids engaged in cake walks, carnival games, enjoying ice cream treats and having a "ball" on the school grounds.

Mark your calendar for Mother's Day weekend when the gang at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church will offer a bundle of gift ideas for "Mom." May 12 marks the St. Andrew's annual Gigantic Benefit Yard Sale from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The church hall will be filled with bargain tables.

Outside the church, a plant sale is to be set up with hanging pots, market packs of herbs and vegetables, annuals, perennials and more. All proceeds from the flea market and the plant sale will go to the Youth Pilgrimage Trip planned for July.

The plant sale will be held on May 12 and May 13, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. St. Andrew's Episcopal Church is at 2892 Route 97 in Glenwood. Questions? Call Lynne Quinn at 410-442-5445.

Have you ever wished you could weigh in with your ideas on growth in the county, traffic, transportation, the new General Plan and pretty much anything that goes on in Howard County? Here's your opportunity.

The Howard County Citizens Association will hold its 51st annual meeting on May 14, 7 p.m., at the Hawthorn Center, 6175 Sunny Spring, in Columbia. Citizens concerns and suggestions are encouraged and welcome. Citizen input will be forwarded to Howard County officials. Refreshments will be served.

Questions? Comments? Go to the website at http://www.howardcountyhcca.org/contact-us/.

Just a reminder. Carole Kramer, coordinator of the yearly Shepherd of the Glen Lutheran Church book sale, is announcing a flea market and "mini" book sale set for June 2, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. If you would like to participate as a vendor for this sale, call Carole at 410-442-2475 or e-mail her at churchbooks@hotmail.com. Spaces are free. Six-foot tables are available for rent for $5 for the vendors.

All that jazz. That's what's in store for local members of the Columbia Pro Cantare who include Sharon Stewart, Sara Cronk, Jean McCulley and Carol Anne Bucher. The chorus members will be a part of the Pro Cantare's Jazz Master the Choral Works of Dave Brubeck on Saturday, May 5, 8 p.m., at the Jim Rouse Theatre, in Columbia. Selections from Brubeck's Mass "To Hope! A Celebration", "Forty Days" and "Hold Fast to Dreams" are part of the program. For ticket or information, call 410-799-9321 or go to the website at http://www.procantare.org.

Thirty-seven years ago, our local West Friendship nursery man Dennis Whittaker recommended the azalea Delaware White for our garden. I have never been disappointed with this beautiful shrub. And I know it was Whittaker who turned me on to Euphorbias which are always a delight in the summer landscape.

For those in the community who yearn for the days when Whittaker's Flowers was open all season, take heart. Dennis and Sylvia will open the doors to Whittaker's Flowers on weekends through June 2. Fridays from noon to 6 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. A special bonus for senior citizens too. Fridays are Senior Days with 10 percent off the purchase of plants.

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