I hope the holiday weekend met all your expectations. This is my favorite time of the year: As far as I'm concerned, summer is here, even if the calendar doesn't say so.
One of my family's favorite ways to kick off the summer season is picking strawberries. Berries are ready to pick now.
County pick-your-own growers include: Odenton -- Robert Robey, 1392 Waugh Chapel Road, 674-6168; Crownsville -- Louis S. Boehm County View Farms, 1369 St. Stephens Road, 721-1834; Davidsonville -- Timothy and James Hopkins, Mount Airy U-Pick Farm, 832 Mount Airy Road, 798-0838; Annapolis -- Anthony G. Smith, 580 Broadneck Road, 757-1625.
* Crofton parents: The day you dread, and the day all school kids can't wait for is almost upon us. Did you know there are only 23 days of school left? If you're like me and can't spend the summer at the beach or send the kids to camp all summer, the Crofton Library may have just the way to beat those "I don't have anything to do" blues.
Take the kids to the library and book a trip on the USS Readalot. The library wants your kids to become a member of CREW (Curious Readers Exploring the World).
It's easy to book a trip if your child is entering grades one through six in the fall (although the library will also have activities for preschoolers). You may register at all county library branches, but need do so only once if you use more than one branch.
Registration is open June 15-July 24, and you can pick up your starter kit at that time. Be sure to fill out a registration form for prize eligibility, and complete your passport to hang in the library. At home, record the books your child reads on the back of the log book.
The library challenges all kids to read at least two books per week. You may visit the library each week to pick out books and get new stickers and activities.
CREW prizes include tickets to Busch Gardens, the Baltimore Zoo, Capital Children's Museum and Wild World; passes for Fair Lanes bowling, Frosty drink coupons from Wendy's, pizza at Chuck E Cheese, Slurpee coupons from 7-11, cookie coupons from Fuddrucker's and activity books.
To be eligible, fill out the registration form and drop it in the box at the library. You only have to enter once; winners will be notified at the end of the summer.
* A flea market and bake sale will be held from 9 a.m. to noon June at the Prince of Peace Presbyterian Church, 1657 Crofton Parkway. Coordinated by the Presbyterian Women, the flea market will include household items, children's clothing and baked goods. Proceeds will be used for church improvements. For more information, call the church at 721-2313.
* The annual Anne Arundel County household hazardous waste drop-off day is set for 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 6 at the Department of Public Works, 1 Harry S Truman Parkway in Annapolis, and at county Fire Department headquarters on Veterans Highway (Old Route 3) in Millersville, just north of Benfield Road.
The county will accept unwanted or reusable household products containing hazardous chemicals such as oil-based paint, paint solvents, pesticides, cleaners, stains, batteries, contaminated motor oil and pool chemicals.
Not acceptable will be medical waste, explosives, smoke alarms, propane tanks or any other compressed gas tank. Used motor oil and antifreeze can be recycled. Containers of water-based latex paint, if completely washed out and thoroughly dry, can be thrown away.
For information, call 222-6103.
* The Bowie-Crofton Garden Club will meet at 7:30 p.m. today at Bowie City Hall on Kenhill Drive. Don Cober of the State Highway Administration's landscaping division will discuss using and growing wild flowers. Visitors are welcome to attend the meetings, held the last Tuesday of each month. A plant exchange and door-prize drawing will follow each meeting. For information, call Art Auer at 262-4517.
* If you have not been out to Cardinal Field in the last week, you have missed the newest addition to the multipurpose fields. On May 13, the Crofton lacrosse program dedicated the fields they practice on to the memory of Matt Lupero.
Many residents who had children in the Crofton Athletic Council will remember Matt as a kid who loved to play sports in Crofton. When Matt was young, you could find him playing the sport in season at the time and always giving his all. He grew to be a fine young man who married, had a child and then tragically was killed last year in a skiing accident.
Many of his former teammates, coaches, neighbors and friends attended the dedication, along with many of the young lacrosse players of Crofton. If you get the chance, take a drive out to the field off Underwood road and take a look at the sign. It's in the Crofton colors of black, red and white with the inscription "Matt Lupero Lacrosse Fields -- 1992."
* The Bowie/Crofton Multiple Sclerosis Support Group will celebrate its fifth anniversary with a potluck social at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 4, at the Church of the Redeemer, 7300 Race Track Road in Bowie. There will be no regular meeting. For information, call 721-1537 or 793-3896.
* The Mid Anne Arundel Unit of the American Cancer Society conducted its fifth annual Jail 'N' Bail May 6-7 at the Crofton Bowling Center. The volunteer jail committee raised close to $6,000 in pledges by arresting prominent business people, residents and even some bowlers.
Anne Arundel County reserve officers served warrants to local jailbirds for everything from impersonating a bank manager to wearing ugly ties. Bill Burlison, representing the Crofton Kiwanis, raised a bail of $1,000 on behalf of the organization.
Committee members organizing the fun-filled two-day event were Audrey Lee of Minute Man Press, Steve Krulik of Parcel Plus, Selena Bartlett of Rite Aid, Tony Cannetti of the Crofton Chamber of Commerce, and Diane Gallow, Carol McNemar and Kay Kelly of A Special Touch.
The jailbirds did not go hungry, with food provided by Little Caesars Pizza and Vince's Deli. The jail was constructed by Atlantic Irrigation Co. and Shemin Nurseries.
Money raised will support cancer research, local education programs and patient services. For more information on the American Cancer Society, call 721-4304.
* Runners take warning: It's almost time for the fourth annual Crofton Kiwanis 10K challenge. Race day, June 27, will start early if you are one of the runners who have not registered or need to pick up your race packets: Pickup will start at 6:30 a.m. in front of the Crofton Country Club.
The race will begin and finish in front of the club, with start time set for 8 a.m. The awards ceremony will begin at 9:15.
There also will be a race bracket for wheelchairs.
A post-race expo will include a complimentary gait, posture, and body fat analysis, plus the very popular sports massage tent.
An important incentive for some runners is that all proceeds from this event are used to support charities.
About 30 trophies will be given away; the first 500 entries will receive a T-shirt.
Entry fees are $10 if postmarked before May 27, $12 after May 27, $15 on race day. For more information, call 721-3398 or 721- 5050.