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Is the day-to-day rat race getting you down? Why not follow the advice of children's author James Howe: "Life is short and there will always be dirty dishes, so let's dance."

Eldersburg 4-H'er Sarah Giordano has just what you need. She has organized a dance with professional dance instruction to benefit Carroll County's 4-H Poultry Judging program.

Giordano explained how she decided on this type of fundraiser: "I had been attending ballroom dances in the area and really enjoyed it," she said. "I really liked this one dance instructor, named Mike Santos. I asked him to come and instruct my fundraiser, and he said 'yes.'"

From 7 to 10 p.m. June 21, Santos will be teaching the Virginia Reel and other dances in the air-conditioned comfort of Burns Hall at the Carroll County Agriculture Center.

Giordano selected less-formal dances for this event. "I want to have dances that will appeal to everyone, and they can have fun," she said.

All ages are welcome, and children can join in the dancing, as long as they can follow the directions. "It should be a great family event," Giordano said.

Tickets are $10 per person or $40 for a family of four or more. Admission includes light refreshments, although a freewill donation basket will be on the snack table. The recommended dress is dressy casual.

Giordano, who just graduated from high school in her home-schooling program, has been a 4-H member since she was 8. Her family added chickens to their household when she was in seventh or eighth grade. "My friends had chickens and told me about poultry judging," she said.

She described the 4-H poultry judging competition as being judged on how you judge. Participants evaluate poultry in three areas: eggs, meat and live birds.

Carroll County has a 4-H poultry judging contest during its 4-H & FFA Fair. The top team of each age group — junior, intermediate and senior — goes to the Maryland State Fair.

The top senior 4-H'ers at the state fair make up a team that goes to the national 4-H poultry judging competition. Giordano has competed at the national level.

Since doing poultry judging at the nationals, Giordano has spent two years co-coaching Carroll County's current poultry judging individuals. The money earned from this fundraiser will go to purchase equipment used in the judging process.

Giordano also has a personal interest in the fundraiser. Her development of this project is part of her work toward the Diamond Clover Award, the top award for a 4-H member.

You can purchase tickets for the dance at the Carroll County Extension Office from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. You can also reserve tickets by emailing Giordano at sarahgiordano@verizon.net or calling her at 410-795-5506. Tickets will be sold at the door.

The Carroll County Extension Office and Burns Hall are off Smith Avenue, Westminster.

Minion movie

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Do you know what a minion is? If you aren't envisioning something small and yellow, you probably haven't seen the film "Despicable Me."

You can remedy that on June 14. The Sykesville Cinema will be showing "Despicable Me" for free.

The movie will start at about 8:30 p.m. at the new location in Millard Cooper Park. Bring along your lawn chairs and blankets for comfortable seating.

Concessions will be available for purchase, or you can bring your own snacks from home. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted.

Parking will be available at Sykesville Middle School. If rain or storms are a threat, call the Sykesville Cinema Hotline at 443-300-8724 for cancellation information.

To learn more about Sykesville Cinema, call the town offices at 410-795-8959.

Millard Cooper Park is at 7252 Cooper Drive, Sykesville.

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