Howard County Times
Howard County

Howard County Briefs

Holiday lights

The 20th annual Symphony of Lights, a 20-minute drive through more than 70 larger-than-life holiday light displays, is on view through Sunday, Jan. 5 at Symphony Woods in Columbia. Hours are 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Admission is $20 per car or van, up to eight passengers; $45 for commercial vans and minibuses seating nine to 24 people; and $125 for buses exceeding 24 passengers. Information: 410-740-7666 or Event benefits Howard County General Hospital.


Free parking

Parking in all lots in Historic Ellicott City is free through Wednesday, Jan. 1. However, meters on Main Street and Maryland Avenue remain in effect, as does the two-hour limit for parking on Main Street during the holidays.


Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits, a social club for people diagnosed with early memory loss or dementia, meets from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in the 50+ Center at the Gary J. Arthur Community Center, 2700 Route 97, Cooksville. Highlights include therapeutic activities, including music, art and exercise, as well as a support group. A daily fee of $30 includes snacks, lunch, coffee and tea. The program is sponsored by the Howard County Office on Aging and the Alzheimer's Association of Greater Maryland. Information: Judy Miller at 410-313-5441 or email

Recycling electronics

The Howard County Bureau of Environmental Services reminds residents to recycle electronic devices. Drop-off locations include the Alpha Ridge Landfill Residents' Convenience Area, 2350 Marriottsville Road. The facility is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and accepts TVs, computers, keyboards, printers, scanners, laptops, VCRs, radios and other electronics. Also, Best Buy's Customer Take-Back Program allows customers to bring in old TVs (32 inches or smaller) at no charge. Offer limited to two televisions per person per day. Console televisions are not accepted.

Recycle bedding

Residents may drop off mattresses and box springs of all sizes at the Alpha Ridge Landfill in Marriottsville for recycling. Items must be dry, and residents are responsible for unloading their vehicles. Residents may still schedule mattresses and box springs for bulk trash pickup by calling 410-313-6444; however, they are encouraged to bring these items to the landfill for recycling. The Alpha Ridge Landfill, 2350 Marriottsville Road, is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Information: go to howardcountyrecycles.org

Calling all artists

•The Howard County Arts Council is seeking artists to participate in the Juried Silent Art Auction Exhibit as part of the Arts Council's fundraising gala, "Celebration of the Arts in Howard County," to be held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. March 29 at Howard Community College's Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center. All 2-D, 3-D, and fine craft artists, 18 and older, residing, working, or studying in the county; and artists who have exhibited in Howard County in the past year are eligible to submit. Submission deadline is Feb. 3. Visual artists working in all styles and media are invited to apply, including painters, sculptors, ceramics artists, fiber artists, jewelers and photographers. Information: 410-313-2787 or


•The Meeting House Gallery at Oakland Mills Interfaith Center is accepting applications from artists for its "Cruisin' About" exhibit beginning Jan. 18. Examples might include implied (or real) freedom of movement/speed such as schools of fish, convertibles or people/children heading somewhere. Information:

Vendors wanted

Vendor applications are being accepted for the county's seventh annual GreenFest being held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 5 at Howard Community College's Burrill Galleria, 10901 Little Patuxent Parkway in Columbia. Vendors and exhibitors with information on green products, options for resident involvement in greening the community, ecological home cleaning, environmentally-friendly lawn care, alternative energy, water conservation and reuse, and tips for greening your everyday activities are encouraged to apply. Other topics of interest include energy efficiency, green buildings, green consumer products, green landscaping, wildlife exploration, children's activities and information on local green organizations.

Each exhibit space includes a five-foot table and two chairs. Cost $35 per space, $25 for nonprofits. An additional $10 will be charged to those who apply after Feb. 7. Preference will be given to local businesses and organizations that promote environmentally-friendly goods and services. For more information, call Alan Wilcom at 410-313-6433 or email him at

Theater rental

The Black Box Theatre, a 98-seat multipurpose performance space equipped with professional sound and lighting equipment, dressing rooms, padded seats, black stage curtains and a sprung dance floor, is available for rental. A performance grand piano is available for rent through a separate agreement with the Howard County Music Teachers Association. All renters of the theater are required to carry commercial liability insurance. Other requirements and rental request forms and rates can be found at Rental request forms should be mailed to Room Rentals, Howard County Arts Council, 8510 High Ridge Road, Ellicott City 21043.