Stars align for neighborhood's book lovers [West Friendship]

Books. Oh, how we love books in this community. Whether it's Erin Matthew's used book shop, Books with a Past in Glenwood, Carole Kramer's huge annual book sale at Shepherd of the Glen Lutheran Church, the varied book clubs in West Friendship and environs or the latest historical novel by local author Gary Bargatze.

Second in his "Your Winding Daybreak Ways" series, Bargatze' second installment of "Happy Hollow" covers the often untold story of the yellow fever epidemic of the 1870's. Harrowing times met by courage and undaunted spirit by the African Americans who faced death as they selflessly tended to those plagued by the fever in Memphis.


For those who enjoyed Bargatze first novel in the series, "Warfield", the second takes up just after the Civil War with the character Thomas readying to teach English at the Westminster Academy in Memphis. Many of the characters from the first novel are found in this the second. Bargatze investigation of this era is meticulous, loaded with historic accuracy and fascinating anecdotes. The harrowing and true story of the yellow fever epidemic fuels this second story in the series with drama and a fast paced narrative filled with the pathos of those courageous African American's who served as nurses, undertakers and police as the masses fled Memphis in panic.

Gary Bargatze divides his time between his writing studios in Glenelg and in the Berkshires of Massachusetts. Want to learn more about the series? Go to the website at www.garybargatze.com.

Are we still talking about books? Yes indeed. As the school year begins and calendars are filled in, it's time to mark the dates for the 20th annual Book Sale at Shepherd of the Glen Lutheran Church.

This year the sale will take place on Sept. 17 and 18, 3-7 p.m., and Sept 19, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is the largest used book sale in Howard County.

Shepherd of the Glen Lutheran Church is at 14551 Burntwoods Road. All proceeds from this phenomenal book sale go toward church-sponsored charities.

Mark your calendar for the West Friendship Volunteer Fire Department annual fall yard sale, set for Sept. 12, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Bargains galore inside and outside.

From West Friendship Station 3 EMT Pieter Lucas comes a reminder for the community. Organizers from The Luke T. Hoffman Foundation invite the community to the annual Luke T. Hoffman Festival and Fund-raiser on Sept. 19, 1 to 7 p.m., at the Sykesville-Freedom District Fire Department.

Luke, a highly regarded member of the community, was a member of West Friendship Volunteer Fire Department when he was killed in the line of duty as a Montgomery County Police officer on April 25, 2007. The LTH Foundation was created by his family and seeks to honor and remember Luke and other public safety officers and raise funds for nonprofit organizations that support the ideals of dedication, service, and sacrifice.

Join in for a day of food and drink, live music, a silent auction, games and more. For ticket information, go to the website at www.LTHfoundation.org or email LTHfundraiser@yahoo.com.