A riot of color will burst onto the scene when the Mason-Dixon Chapter, American Rhododendron Society hosts its annual rhododendron and azalea plant show from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 9, at the Carroll County Agriculture Center.
In addition to the show, the group will provide expert advice and educational materials on growing azaleas and rhododendrons and will offer many spring plants for sale, donated from members' gardens.
The highlight of this event will be the many different varieties and colors of rhododendrons and azaleas entered in the show. Ribbons and a number of prizes will be awarded to the top entries, including the People's Choice Award, to be decided by the popular vote of all attendees.
Angela Bowersox, of Pleasant Valley, is a charter member of the Mason-Dixon Chapter and currently serves on its board of directors. She said members of the Rhododendron Society are eligible for the show. Last year, she won a crystal pitcher for the People's Choice Award.
Plants donated by chapter members will be sold at the event. Vendors will also offer plants that are hardy-growers in this area for sale. Look for rhododendrons, azaleas and numerous companion sale plants, including hostas, hollies and numerous perennials as well as a number of native plants.
"There are usually about six vendors selling azaleas, rhododendrons and companion plants as well as artwork, jewelry and other gifts [sold] by another vendor," Bowersox said.
The Mason-Dixon Chapter, founded in 1981, helps bring the joy of gardening — especially with rhododendrons — to the public with booths at several Maryland home and garden shows and other garden-related activities and with appearances at local nurseries, according to its web page.
The chapter is active year-round, including a winter luncheon, spring garden tour and summer picnic. The regular meetings are open to everyone and usually take place one Sunday a month at Bear Branch Nature Center.
The show and sale will take place in the rabbit building at the Ag Center, which is off Gist Road in Westminster.
For more information, call 410-848-9587 or visit http://mdrhododendron.org/2011ShowSale.htm.
Dine and shop
The Deer Park United Methodist Church Men's Group and Deer Park Lions Club will have an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast from 7 to 10:30 a.m. May 16 at the church's social hall. There will also be a large community yard sale and flea market with vendors on the lawn of the church from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The breakfast will include pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, hash browns, applesauce, juice, coffee, hot tea and milk, according to Lions Club member Gene Myers. The cost is $6.50 for adults, $3 for 5- to 12-year-olds, and free for children 4 and younger.
The church will also sell baked goods at a table from 7 a.m. until all items are sold.
Look for all sorts of items at the yard sale. Church member Steve Hildenbrand said that in addition to community and church members having reserved spaces, several craft and merchandise vendors will offer other items for sale — including jewelry, bedding plants and hanging flower baskets by nearby Sunshine Acres Farm.
Twenty-by-20-foot spaces are still available for $20. Vendors bring their own tables, Hildenbrand said.
From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. lunch will be available for purchase and will include soups, chicken salad sandwiches, grilled hot dogs and hamburgers, and other foods.
Proceeds from the day will help support the church's and the Lions' community outreach activities and ministries.
The church is at 2205 Sykesville Road, Smallwood.
Call the church office at 410-848-2313 or visit http://www.deerparkumc.net for additional information or to reserve a space.
Spring flea market
Zion United Methodist Church of Shipley will have its Annual Spring Flea Market at the church from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 15 and 8 a.m. to noon May 16.
Look for collectibles, toys, housewares, furniture, clothing and accessories, jewelry and many other items.
Sandwiches, soups and desserts will be for sale throughout the day.
This event will be held rain or shine. For information, call 410-848-9080.
The church is at 2716 Old Washington Road, south of Westminster.
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Lois Szymanski covers Finksburg, Gamber, Pleasant Valley, Reese, Sandymount, Silver Run, Smallwood, Union Mills and Westminster. To contact her call 410-346-7321 or email email@example.com.