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Birthdays, groundhogs kick off February in HdG

What? Is it already February, dear readers?

February introduces African-American History (Black History) month.

Feb. 1 is National Freedom Day.

Happy Groundhog Day on Feb. 2. At 7:30 a.m. Punxsatawney Phil will emerge from a simulated tree trunk on Gobbler's Hill in Pennsylvania. If he sees his shadow, winter will continue; if not, spring is soon to arrive.

Big birthday wishes are extended to Tiffany Cline (Jan. 31); and Kayla Layton (Feb. 3), who is studying in Ireland. Happy wedding anniversary wishes to Bill and Donna Barker (Feb. 2).

Let's play bingo! Alla Bradley informed me that on Sunday the American Legion, 501 St. John St., will host bingo from 6 to 10 p.m. Open to the public; refreshments are available. 410-939-0234.

February is snack food month. Anyone in need may snack at Grace Place Serving Center at St. John's Episcopal Church, 114 N. Union Ave., 410-939-2107, for its regular Tuesday luncheon from 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Feb. 4. Volunteers will provide a free, hot meal to those who enter.

Leaded gasoline was first sold Feb. 2, 1923. I'm certain you have noticed the rise in gas prices; with little falling.

Feb. 4 is "Thank a Mailman Day." (I guess postal worker/employee would be more politically correct?) Thank you to all our postal employees at the Havre de Grace Post Office. You're great!

My local dentist, Dr. Kim Birchem, will like this notice - February is National Children's Dental Health Month.

Feb. 6 is Babe Ruth's birthday. Babe Ruth visited Havre de Grace several times. One notable time was when he stayed at the Abraham Jarrett Thomas House (1834), then the Lafayette Hotel; at 501 St. John St., until the early 1940s. Today, this blue building is home to the Joseph L. Davis Post of the American Legion. Hit one out of the ballpark for me!

Today (Jan. 31) is Chinese New Year, which has been celebrated for more than 4,000 years dating to 2697 B.C. Determined by the Chinese lunar calendar, the ancient celebrations marked the end of winter and the commencement of spring. On New Year's Eve, Chinese family members visit and share meals.

A Chinese gift for the new year may be Chinese good fortune envelopes with coins, given to bring good luck, prosperity and happiness to the recipient, as well as the giver.

Plan your Oriental feast for the Year of the Horse with a Chinese meal at home or go authentic at one of our local restaurants for a taste of Chinese cuisine: The China Kitchen at 800 Pulaski Highway (410-939-9026); or The China Palace at 800 Pulaski Highway (410-939-9398) at the Hatem Bridge. All honor carryout orders and the China Palace offers delivery service. The creation of your own dragon costume is optional for the celebration. More moo goo gai pan, anyone?

Charlie Mike phoned me about an all day event at the Green Turtle in Aberdeen Saturday to raise funs for the Havre de Grace Independence celebration. Lunch, dinner and evening drinks proceeds will have a percentage donated to the fund. Also, the band "Head Rush" will be playing that eve; they also will play the July concert.

Mary Boehly informed me about a free, open to the public concert by the USAF Heritage Ramblers, Feb. 8 at 3 p.m. in Havre de Grace United Methodist Church, 101 S. Union Ave., Havre de Grace. Sponsored by the Havre de Grace Arts Commission, the Heritage Ramblers are six members for the USAF Heritage of America Band from Langley, Va., known for their brilliant brass sound and precision. For information, visit http://www.heritageofamericaband.af.mil or phone 410-939-2100.

Cathy Vincenti informed me about the next Havre de Grace Chamber of Commerce luncheon Feb. 13, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Bayou Restaurant, Route 40. Sponsored by Freedom Federal Credit Union, the luncheon costs $18. The guest speaker will be Harford County Executive David Craig with an "Update on New County Businesses." Make reservations at 410-939-3303 or email hdegchamber1@comcast.net.

Brigitte Peters, at the Office of Tourism, and I are making the parade list for the March 4 Mardi Gras Parade, 6:30 p.m. down Bourbon Street from the high school, to Washington Street into downtown, ending on St. John and Warren streets at Legion Square and David Craig Park at Lafayette's statue. Laissez les bons temps roulez. Grab some beads. The party continues at downtown restaurants and taverns. Groups interested in joining the parade should contact Peters, 410-939-2100, or myself at the phone listed here.

Havre de Grace has a poet and may not know it! Phyllis Weidow Fenwick, the receptionist extraordinaire at the front desk in Havre de Grace City Hall, shared some of her poetry with me, from her collection "Mirrors of the Mind." Here is one entitled "Daily Living:"

God's love is always present

As we live from day to day.

And each day we are shown

That he's here to stay.

We feel His strength each day

When we put our trust in Him.

And every time we do,

We're always sure to win.

May God bless you

Keeping you in His care.

And may His wondrous love

Be with you everywhere.

That's a wrap folks. Keep me in touch at 410-939-6562 or 226 N. Union Ave. See ya!

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