In 1987, a group of neighbors in the St. John's Community Association decided that the wooded cemetery on St. John's Lane had been abused long enough.
Responding to builder destruction of the oldest portion of the graveyard, they formed the Friends of Whipps Cemetery, and in conjunction with the surviving members of the family, started clearing the poison ivy and honeysuckle and picking up the broken glass and litter left after teen drinking parties. They were helped by Boy Scout Troop 305 and several members of the community association.
Six years later, the cemetery has been mostly cleared of rubbleexposing the graves of 16 members of the Whipps family and 40 additional graves belonging to other county residents.
The oldest grave was dated 1833; other graves are dated to the early 1900s. By 1930, the cemetery was abandoned and neglected until the community revived interest in it.
One of the current objectives of the Friends of Whipps Cemetery is to mend some of the gravestones broken in the years of neglect. But to do so, a specialist in stone conservation must be hired to piece together the crumbling and sugared carvings. And that costs money.
The cemetery group is holding a yard sale on May 22 at 390Hawthorn Road from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. to fund the project.
Barbara Seig, president of the group, will play host for the yarsale at her home, and is looking not only for shoppers, but also for items to sell. People with messy garages and basements: Do a favor for yourself and Whipps Cemetery by donating unwanted treasures.
Call 465-6721 for information on pick-up or hours when you can dropoff your contribution.
Cub Scout Pack 305, headed by Cub master Bob Garrity, is pleased to announce that its Webelos Cub Scouts have bridged to Boy Scouting.
On April 29, Mr. Garrity conducted the candlelight ceremony at St. John's Episcopal Church. Webelos den leaders Jill Montgomery and Paul Correia presented the Arrow of Light Award, the highest award to be earned in Cub Scouts, to: Ryan Kelly, Scott Afzal, Philip Kiracofe, Carl Proffen, Ryan Myers, Hugh Green, Kevin Bair, David Tyminsky-Utterback, Justin McDuffie, Bradley Raglin and Robert Smith.
All of the boys who bridged have joined area Boy Scout troops.
Den 6 would like to recognize and give thanks to Brenda Afzalassistant den leader, for her devoted time during the past two years.
May is Mental Health month. To commemorate it, the Howard County Arts Center at Rockland School in Ellicott City is sponsoring an exhibit by Clifton T. Perkins Hospital patients.
Mary Toth, Director of the Arts Council, told me that becauspsychiatric patients very often cannot express their feelings verbally, therapists use art for a medium of articulation.
Two sets of paintings demonstrate a measure of patientsprogress from illness toward health. Through his paintings, one young man, a diagnosed schizophrenic, initially showed total lack of connection with a person whom he had hurt, but later showed a sense of caring and remorse.
The exhibit will be at the center until June 9. You can see the exhibit 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, , and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
The Learning Disabilities Association of Howard County announces a scheduling change.
The meeting that usually takes place on the fourth Tuesday of the month will be held instead at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 26 at Howard High School.