News from West Friendship

Santa Claus is coming to town. St. Nick, atop a shiny red fire engine, is coming to your neighborhood. The jolly elves of West Friendship Volunteer Fire Department will continue their good will North Pole trek for the next few evenings.

Kids, and all who are young at heart should be on the lookout for the white bearded wonder during the nights before Christmas. The North Pole entourage is expected to make rounds from approximately 6:30 to 9 p.m. on each of the designated evenings. Listen for the sound of jingle bells and the man in red Thursday, Dec.15 if you're in the vicinity of Carroll Mill Road, Etchison Road, Mount Albert Road, Benson Branch Road, Fawnhaven Court, Pointer Hill Court or Woodspurge Court.

The jolly gang will head to the neighborhoods of Triadelphia Road, Emerald Valley Road, Evergreen Way, Golden Oak Court, Conchita Drive And Benson Estates Drive Friday, Dec. 16.

The North Pole team will head your way through the winter night Saturday, Dec.17 with a trek through the neighborhoods of Buckskin Wood Drive, Buckskin Lake Drive, Ridgewood Drive, Walt Ann Drive, Hunt Ridge Road, Scheel Drive and Lakeway Drive.

On Sunday, Dec. 18 the merry makers will head to River Valley Chase, Fox Valley Road, Parliament Drive, Stiles Way, Snow Chief Way, Andrea Drive and Kennard Drive.

Monday, Dec. 19 is the evening set aside for a trek through Brantly Court, Mustang Path, Windridge Court, Clarks Meadow Drive, Bucks Overlook Court, Day Farm Road, Dalhart Road and Michelle Drive.

Folks in the vicinity of Clover Hill Drive, Barnard Way, Fox Meadow, Winfield Road And Wellworth Way should be on the lookout Tuesday, Dec. 20.

River Road, Howard Lodge Road, Indian Hill Drive, Windriver Drive, Amberwoods Way and Coventry Court neighbors will get a good view Wednesday, Dec. 21.

The elves of Station 3 will end the holiday tour Dec. 22 with a ride through the neighborhoods of Sharp Road, Old Rover Road, Danmark Drive, Tall Ships Drive, Roscommon Drive And Appleby Court From the members of West Friendship Volunteer Fire Department's Station 3, "Happy Christmas to all and to all a good night."

Music is in the air over at Marriotts Ridge High School. The 2011 Holiday Jazz Cabaret which is hosted by the Marriotts Ridge High School Music Foundation will present an evening of holiday favorites Tuesday, Dec. 20, 7 p.m. in the Commons at Marriott Ridge High.

The festive sounds of the season are promised, along with the great opportunity to unwind from all the holiday hubbub. The music will be performed by the Marriotts Ridge High School jazz combo, Madrigals, women's ensemble, choral groups and big band.

Coffee, hot chocolate and sweet treats are included in the $10 admission. Marriotts Ridge is located at 12100 Woodford Drive.

Questions? Email Donna Flemister at

Back in 1958, television's top-rated show was "Wyatt Earp." Young girls of my generation loved the program not so much for the gun slinging bar-room brawls as much as for glimpses of its star, the wavy-haired, tall-in-the-saddle actor Hugh O'Brian.

During the height of Wyatt Earp's success, O'Brian traveled to Africa, where for nine days he met and observed Dr. Albert Schweitzer. Inspired by the selfless endeavors of Schweitzer, O'Brian vowed to do something of value for humanity.

Schweitzer told the young actor, "The most important thing in education is to teach young people to think for themselves." Thus was born the Hugh O'Brian Youth Foundation, an organization dedicated to the recognition and development leadership potential in high school sophomores. A group that O'Brian calls "the best of the best of the best," participants are called ambassadors, charged with the responsibility of giving back to society through their competency. Every high school sophomore is eligible for the state seminar. Student leaders are nominated by their principals, guidance counselors and teachers.

Congratulations to Glenelg High School sophomore Jessica Cooper who has been announced as the Hugh O'Brian Leadership Ambassador. Cooper will attend a three-day leadership conference in the spring of 2012. Congratulations. Jessica.

An ice cream social was held recently to honor the members of the Sunshine and Clovers 4-H Club who each achieved honor roll status at their individual schools. The honored students include Isabelle Yourick, Alexandra Miller, Matthew Hullet and Dakota Spahr. Matthew is also recognized and regaled by his fellow club members for earning "first" and "best opposite variety" awards during the recent Baltimore and Howard Rabbit Show. Congratulations one and all.

Grandmother Donna Carr is always ready and willing to share the good news of her delightful grandchildren. The latest "doings" took place Dec. 3 when two of Donna's granddaughters who both happen to be cheerleaders at River Hill High School, cheered on the Hawks' crowd at the M&T Bank Stadium during the Class 3A state championship football game between River Hill and Thomas Johnson.

Donna's "girls" — Riley Smith and Jackie Carpenter — along with their pal Amanda Rines were among those cheering the team on. Donna loves her family and loves to share all they are doing. Thanksgiving was a happy time too, when grandson Bradley Carpenter was home from college to join in the family festivities.

Emily Schweich, president of the Glenelg High School Key Club is thrilled with the response to her club's plea for Toys for Tots. She's also delighted with the great outpouring from the school and community during the club's UNICEF campaign.

One of Emily's neighbors, Jay Smith, donated $80 to the fund. Ultimately, the Key Club raised more than $900. According to Emily, the donations were gathered during Glenelg High football games and during trick-or-treat outings.

Members of the Glenelg High Chapter of the Key Club will also be distributing toys to needy children at the Roger Carter Center in Ellicott City Dec. 24. Emily is also enthusiastic about the idea that the Key Club at Glenelg High has grown to more than 68 members. The service organization is consistently involved in community service, locally and globally.

A few local holiday happenings to mark on your calendar. An outdoor service is planned by the parishioners of St. James United Methodist Church in West Friendship. Community members are invited to join church members for a 20 minute outdoor service in which "The Christmas Story" will be staged live by church members and a few barnyard friends as well. Two performances are scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 17 at 7 and 8 p.m.

St. James United Methodist Church in West Friendship also welcomes the community to join in a Christmas Eve Service Dec. 24 at 8 p.m. and a Christmas Worship Service Dec. 25 at 11 a.m.

Brother Gerry Seipp's fabulous train garden in the Manor House at the Shrine of St. Anthony on Folly Quarter Road is open to the public Sunday, Dec. 18 from 1 to 3 p.m. Fanciful figures, dozens of working trains and magically lit ceramic buildings framed by the magnificent glittery tree in the historic Manor House Foyer make for a festive event.

The train garden open house will continue Sundays 1-3 p.m. through January with the exception of Christmas Day and New Year's Day.

If you still haven't had your fill of holiday train gardens, try out the unique display at Taylor's Antique Mall on Main Street in the historic district of Ellicott City. Classic Plastic Bricks is presenting a retro one of a kind Lego Christmas display with an actual running Lego train set. The set up is made up entirely of Lego plastic bricks, transforming the tiny Lego's into a Christmas landscape train garden.

Taylor's Antique Mall is at 8197 Main St., in Ellicott City. The Lego Christmas display will be on view until Jan. 10, Monday thru Saturday, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m.

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