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Piney Ridge Elementary School plans Relay Recess

If it's not raining today, you'll see some different types of activities at Piney Ridge Elementary School.

Today is the day for Relay Recess, the school's Relay for Life-associated event.

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According to parent Linda Dore, every grade will come outside for an hour, do a symbolic lap around the track at the school, play games about cancer prevention, and then go through information stations about cancer prevention.

Each group will hear a speaker, and Dore's daughter, Olivia, a fourth-grader, will do an awareness exercise where she reads off a list of categories of people - such as grandparents or neighbors - to a group of standing students, asking them to sit down when they know someone in one of those categories who has cancer.

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Linda Dore said that last year, by the end of the list, almost everyone was sitting.

"It helps to get kids aware of what Relay is," Dore said.

In addition to Relay Recess, the students have drawn seven large Dalmatian posters to hang in the hallways - one for each grade and one for the teachers. Spots for the Dalmatians cost $1, and the funds go to the school's Relay for Life team, the Piney Ridge Dalmatian Fighters.

The Dalmatian is the school mascot.

Students also have collection envelopes for donations to support the school's Relay for Life team. If you see a student collecting, please give generously. Envelopes will be due a week after Relay Recess.

For more information, call Linda Dore at 410-227-1945.

If you would like to donate to the American Cancer Society on behalf of the Piney Ridge Elementary team, go to http://www.relayforlife.org/freedommd and search the list of teams for the Piney Ridge Dalmatian Fighters.

Annual berry fest

Be sure to come out Saturday for the 23rd annual strawberry festival for Messiah Lutheran Church at the Sykesville-Freedom District fire company's carnival grounds. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Craft and flea market vendors will be on hand, and there will be lots of entertainment throughout the day. All sorts of kids activities will be offered, including a giant slide, hay wagon rides, sticky tag, pony rides and much more.

The day will start out with breakfast sandwiches at 9 a.m., and other menu items will be added in for lunch. You can also find sweet treats at the baked goods booth.

Of course, the real feature is freshly picked strawberries. If you want more than that, homemade strawberry shortcake will be served, too.

Admission to the strawberry festival is free, and you'll find plenty of room to park.

For more information, call 410-795-9174 or visit http://www.melchurch.org.

The fire company is at 6680 Sykesville Road, Sykesville.

New fitness classes

Freedom Fitness, affiliated with the Freedom Area Recreation Council, invites you to try two new classes that will be offered in the studio at Carrolltown Center in Eldersburg.

What happens when you add a chair to a Zumba workout? You get Zumba Sentao.

Don't plan on sitting. The chair is used as a dance partner to increase the energy of your workout. Zumba Sentao will start Tuesday, from 7 to 8 p.m.

Another variation on the Zumba theme will be the Zumba Fitness and Belly Dance Core class, designed to give participants more toning, strengthening and stretching.

Licensed Zumba trainer and veteran belly dancer Morgan Little will lead a Zumba fitness class, followed by work with standing belly dance core isolations. This class will begin Thursday, from 7 to 8 p.m.

Curious? Both classes are offering you a chance for a free trial on Tuesday or Thursday.

Equipment and space are limited, so you need to preregister for each class. To register, go online to http://www.freedomfitness.info/events.

To get more information, email Tracy Cox, coordinator of Freedom Fitness, at cox@freedomfitness.info or call her at 410-795-9101.

Trash to treasures

By the way, remember the Freedom Fitness Trash to Treasures Fleamarket will be from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday on the parking lot of Carrolltown Center, 6400 Ridge Road, Eldersburg.

You can get a chance to shop for bargains, and help out the Freedom Area Recreation Council programs through Carroll County Recreation and Parks.

To learn more, email cox@freedomfitness.info or call 410-795-9101.

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