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It's finally, really spring and what better way to celebrate, now that opening day at Camden Yards is over, than by visiting the historic district for the annual Spring Fest.

This year's Earth Day celebration will be held Saturday, April 25, from noon to 7:30 p.m. The party will spill out over several venues along Main Street. There will be over 25 bands playing on four different stages. There will be craft beer gardens, sidewalk shopping, free arts and crafts for the kids and a free shuttle to get you where you want to go.

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All in all a most excellent way to enjoy a day with the family. And don't forget — there are no more parking meters on Main Street. Parking there is still limited to two hours but you don't have to pay to park anymore.

The party continues

C The event is "A Starlight Spring Formal" featuring Eli August and the Abandoned Buildings, Hot and Bothered Vaudevillian Duo and Karnevil Sideshow Antics.

They encourage you to dress up in your favorite attire — anything ranging from bad high school prom outfit to country barn dance to a salute to the '80s Miami Vice look. Tickets are $15. For reservations or more information, call 410-480-3250 or email info@hchsmd.org.

The society's next "Lunch Date with History" will be held on Friday, May 1, at noon. Virginia Frank will be talking about the National Road, which we now know in Ellicott City as our own Main Street, and Frederick Road.

And, speaking of the National Road, mark your calendar for the National Road yard sale, coming up on May 16 and 17. The Society will be participating, along with Historic Ellicott City Inc. offering items for sale at Mt. Ida.

Still Life Gallery

The Still Life Gallery is hosting a wine and cheese reception for artist Antonia Burns on Sunday, April 26, from 4 to 7 p.m. Her works are described as female, feline and fabulous. Sounds like something worth investigating! For more information, contact the gallery at 410-461-1616.

First Friday

The next First Friday in the historic district will be held on May 1. This is a great evening of live music and special sales as many shops stay open for extended hours.

Jazz jam

The Judge's Bench will host the area's only jazz jam on May 5 starting at 8:30 p.m. You are welcome to come and enjoy the music or also to join in.

Hits for Hearts

Ron Hogg was a tireless volunteer in the historic district and his sudden and unexpected death from an undetected heart condition left us all saddened. On April 24 at 4 p.m., there will be the second annual "Ron Hogg Memorial Hits for Hearts" softball game at Centennial High School to raise money for heart research. Ron's daughter Maria Hogg is the assistant coach for the Centennial varsity softball team, which will be playing Wilde Lake at this event. Proceeds will benefit the American Heart Association.

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Hills of Milltown 5K

The "Hills of Milltown 5K Challenge" will be held at 8:30 a.m. on May 23. Proceeds benefit the beautification fund of the Ellicott City Historic District Partnership, with up to $1,000 to be donated to Blossoms of Hope, which supports the Claudia Meyer Cancer Resource Center at Howard County General Hospital. For more information about both of these events, go to http://www.visitellicottcity.com.

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