Several critical renovations were accomplished at the Carroll Baldwin Hall throughout 2019.
Several critical renovations were accomplished at the Carroll Baldwin Hall throughout 2019. (Phil Grout/For BSMG/Baltimore Sun Media Group)

It was a big year for the Board of Carroll Baldwin Memorial Institute Inc. The organization enjoyed strong community support and a Maryland Sustainable Communities grant.

Several critical renovations were accomplished at the Carroll Baldwin Hall throughout 2019. Drainage around the building was improved to mitigate water infiltration. The badly deteriorated east and west end entrances were replaced. A new HVAC system was installed in the library. The remaining funding from this grant will be used to replace the worn 97-year-old wood floors with new oak flooring in February. At Thanksgiving, locally-owned ROI Construction company donated supplies and labor to make repairs on the roof, gutter and portico.


Wishes for the future of the Carroll Baldwin Hall include upgrades to doors and windows, an ADA compliant ramp to the basement and a new north staircase. Plenty of activities are scheduled throughout the new year at the hall. On Sunday, Jan. 26, a Farewell Floors Potluck and Games Night is scheduled from 4 to 7 p.m. Put March 7 on your calendar now for the ’50s and ’60s Cancer and Dance Night from 4 to 7 p.m.

You may remember that throughout 2019 debates and discussions centering around school redistricting took center stage for many families in Howard County. Now that the final decisions have been made, plans are in place for moving students at each of the local elementary, middle and high schools and family orientation dates are planned.

River Hill High School Parent Scheduling Night will be Monday, Jan. 6 at 7 p.m. There will be a brief presentation on scheduling, a tour of the building and time to meet with teachers and counselors. Representatives from the Special Education department and from the Office of Dual Enrollment (JumpStart) will also be available. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Patrick Scible at Patrick_scible@hcpss.org.

Other schools are planning similar events for families who are moving to a new school in the 2020-21 school year. Orientation for those moving to Reservoir High School will be Thursday, Jan. 9 at 6:30 p.m. On Jan. 13, at 6:30 p.m., Murray Hill Middle School will host orientation. If your student will be new to Patuxent Valley Middle School attend the meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 14 at 6:30 p.m. New Hammond Middle School families can attend a meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 15, at 6 p. m., and Lime Kiln Middle School families can attend on Thursday, Jan. 16 at 6:30 p.m.

These school orientations are an excellent way to get to know staff and become familiar with the new school, learn about school programs and hear about ways students and families can get involved.

Beyond the orientations in January, there will be additional opportunities throughout the spring for staff to welcome you and your child, gain familiarity with staff and build community at your new school. You can go to school websites to find out about upcoming events that you could attend such as curricular nights, plays, concerts and games this spring.

If you love to read and have a mug of beer of two, the Savage Branch of the Howard County Library is sponsoring the perfect opportunity for you. Books on Tap meets at the Hysteria Brewing Co. on Berger Road in Columbia every Wednesday from 6 to 7 p. m. No registration is required, but you will want to read “In the Midst of Winter” by Isabel Allende prior to the book discussion on Jan. 8. “Radio Free Vermont: A Fable of Resistance” by Bill McKibben will be the focus of the meeting on Feb. 5.

The next meeting of the Savage Historical Society will be on Monday, Jan. 20 at 7 p. m. at the Faith & Ministry Center in Savage. Presenter Virginia Fisher Grimes will share information on the topic “Early School Days.” The discussion is free and open to the public. Call Helen Rushing, society secretary, at 301-725-1241.