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Mount Airy short story author to be featured at Maryland Home & Garden Show

Sara Morris Swetcharnik attended a past Maryland Home and Garden Show as a paying visitor interested in looking at the landscaped gardens on display.

She's returning this year as a guest speaker in a format that relates to her talents.

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Swetcharnik, of Mount Airy, is presenting "Remembering George Washington and the Cherry Tree" at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Home and Garden Show at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium.

The Maryland Home and Garden Show runs Saturday and Sunday and March 9-11.

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This year's Books in Bloom theme for the 17 landscaped gardens on display is inspired by popular texts, including "Harry Potter," "The Hobbit" and "James and the Giant Peach."

Swetcharnik's discussion will include sharing a short story on the legend of young George Washington chopping down a cherry tree. She said she was always drawn to short stories, even as a child.

"I hate to put books down while I am reading them," she said. "If I read a short story, I can start it and finish it and do something else without losing days."

Authors and books are a focus of this year's spring garden show, which will feature gardens with fountains and ponds, gazebos and flower beds.

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One of the theme's, based on "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," will be at the front entrance of the Home Show.

Maryland Home and Garden Show Manager Jay Plummer said he immediately smelled chocolate when he entered.

"When people pass by," he said, "they'll be yearning for chocolate."

Anyone with any library card will receive $2 off admission, Plummer said. Displays will have QR codes smartphone users can scan to find out where books are available at nearby libraries.

The gardeners, once again, came up with creative ways to decorate this year, Plummer said.

"One of the gardens [has] a Harry Potter castle on the back," he said. "We have some really interesting gardens."

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