Here we are at the start of another month. March has been the traditional time for kite flying, leprechauns and daffodils, not to mentionspring soccer, lacrosse and baseball practices.

On top of the oldstandbys, the Easter bunny and spring break will be making an appearance this month.

So relax and take a deep breath before looking at your calendar. It will get better, or so the old sages tell me.


Travel to the sunny, wind-swept hills of 16th-century Spain this weekend as the Drama Club of Northeast High School presents a revival of the musical "Man of La Mancha."

Performances are set for 7 p.m. tonight and tomorrow at the school, located on Duvall Highway.

Based on the writings of Miguel de Cervantes, one of Spain's greatest authors, the musical finds Cervantes in a Seville dungeon awaiting trail by the Inquisition for an offense against the church.

Tried by his peers -- a motley band of thieves, murderers and cutthroats -- his defense is presented in the form of entertainment.

Drawing costumes and makeup,Cervantes and his man-servant become characters from the unfinished "Don Quixote." They proceed to play out the story, with the help of fellow prisoners who assume the roles of various characters in the novel.

The title roles of Cervantes, Don Quixote and Alonso Quijana will be performed by Ben Anderson. David Haynie will portray Sancho Panza, Quixote's faithful sidekick. Nikki Anita Whitehead will portray Aldonza; Alonso's niece will be played by Mindi Pitt. Christy Alexandrowicz will be Alonso's housekeeper, and Jim Canter will be the padre. Dr. Carrasco will be performed by Matt Sexton, with Ernest Levrone as the innkeeper.

Rounding out the cast are Carrie Bevans, Holly Bossert, Jessica Bowman, Jason Canter, Daniel Coking, Dan Cook, Maddalena D'Alessio, John Dougherty, Anne Dye, Heather Feeheley, Lisa Fields, Bernie Frank, Cindy Godbold, Stacey Niemann, Jenn Slough, Chris Sweitzer, Rick Sweitzer and Dawn Tabor.

Tickets are $4 and will be available at the door.


Buying and trading baseball cards used to be the joy of almost every All-American kid. But over the last decade, the cards and other sports memorabilia have joined the ranks of sought-after collectibles for the young and those young-at-heart.

Catering to those interests, the Riviera Beach Little League is sponsoring a Baseball Card Show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Stoney Creek Democratic Club on Fort Smallwood Road.

Admission is $1, and hourly door prizes will be awarded. A Baltimore Blast player will appear at the show.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Riviera Beach Little League.


The Maryland School Performance Program will be the topic at the next Parent Evening Speaker Series program, set for 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Chesapeake High School student center.

Principal Harry Calender will talk about the program, which sets standards for all schools in the state.

Counselor Edie Picken said the MSPP will cause many reforms that will have a serious impacton how students learn, as well as sweeping changes in policies and curriculum.

The program is open to all parents.

For more details, call Picken at 255-9600.


Sign up your "karate kid" for co-ed youth karate, set for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday evenings starting March 5 at Riviera Beach Elementary School on Jenkins Road.

Taught by black belt instructors Bob Beke and Jeff Miller, the 10-week program will teach self-defense and protective maneuvers while exercising and disciplining the body and mind.

The program, sponsored by the county Department of Recreation and Parks, is open to boys and girls ages 6 to 14. Loose clothing is required.

The fee for the program is $35.

For registration details, call Bob Brandenburger at 222-3600.


The next meeting of the Citizens Advisory Council of Chesapeake Bay Middle School will take place at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the school.

On tap for discussion will be the effects of the Maryland SchoolPerformance Program at the school.

For more details, call 437-2400.


Suffering from cabin fever? Those old winter blahs got you down? Itching to try out those new walking shoes? Ranger Dennis Cloutier at Downs Park has just the right prescription for what ails you -- walking.

Tomorrow at 2 p.m., Cloutier will lead a WinterBlues Walk along park trails.

* Also at the park, children ages 5to 10 can learn how to make a simple sled kite that actually flies at the Kitemaking for Kids program, slated for 10 a.m. March 9. The program is free, but advance registration is required.

* Learn how to give that dusty bike a "clean bill of health" as Steve Ruck, a.k.a.the Bike Doctor, will be on hand at 11 a.m. March 10. Maintenance tips and pointers for that sick bike will be offered to

registered participants.


Magothy Health Center's Thrift Shop announces a special winter sale on all apparel starting next week.

On Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, shoppers can buy one item and receive a second item of comparable value free. The shop is at Mountain Road and Catherine Avenue. Shop hours on Wednesday and Saturday are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Evening hours, from 5 to 8 p.m., are scheduled for Thursday.

The Thrift Shop is operated by volunteers under the direction of Nancy Calvert. Proceeds from all sales are used to help to support the work of the Magothy Health Center.


A belated congratulations to Virginia Zimmerman, administrative secretary at Northeast High School. Zimmerman was recently honored by the Board of Education as February's Employee of the Month, for her outstanding service to the staff and students at Northeast.

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