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Back-to-school fashion frenzy is well under way for parents, kids WEST COLUMBIA


Twelve days and counting . . .

Kids are starting to grumble. Parents are beginning to smile again. Teachers are bracing themselves for the start of fall classes. And, as summer winds down, almost everyone is beginning to experience the turmoil that accompanies the beginning of a new school year.

There are school supplies and new clothes to buy, and dozens of other little things that constantly seem to slip our minds.

Most parents already know that back-to-school shopping with the kids can be a teeth-grinding, hair-pulling and probably a wallet-emptying experience. Isn't it amazing, however, that every year we somehow fail to remember that the world as we know it will come to a sudden end if they, our kids, don't make the proper fashion statement on that all important first day of school?

For the girls, this means the right clothes, with the right labels, fully mixed, matched and color coordinated and purchased only at the right stores. And, don't forget the matching shoes, jewelry and other accessory items.

Mandatory for the guys are the latest over-priced sneakers, the ones being endlessly hyped on television. These new shoes, of course, go with the obligatory baggy (i.e., at least 2 sizes too large) pants and shirts, which also cost us a small fortune.

Happily, we somehow survive, parents and children alike. As the school year progresses, these early trials and tribulations fade, replaced by others, such as getting our kids to do homework and to strive for good grades.


Wilde Lake High School has scheduled an orientation session in the school auditorium for incoming ninth-grade and new upper-class students from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Aug. 26.

The ninth-grade students should bring a copy of their schedule.

No buses will be provided, so transportation will be the responsibility of parents.


Hey, sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders, don't forget the pool party for middle school students tomorrow night at the Running Brook pool.

The party, co-sponsored by the Columbia Association Teen Center and the Town Center Community Association, starts at 8 p.m. and won't be over until 10:30 p.m. In between, there will be lots of swimming, water games and prizes.

Preregistration is required. For more information, call 730-4744.

The rain date is Aug. 26.


Some long-awaited good news was announced to the parishioners of St. John's Catholic Church last weekend.

Since June, the church has been holding services in the auditorium at Wilde Lake High School while its chapel at the Wilde Lake Interfaith Center was undergoing extensive renovations.

The work is nearing completion, and the first Mass in the newly renovated chapel is scheduled for Sunday.

Eleven young members of the St. John's parish were in Denver last week to attend World Youth Day, an international gathering of youth and young adults.

They were: Jane Collins, Beth Anne French, Maria Jerardi, Lisa Kile, Katie Kile, Maria Romano, Scott Saffle, Barbara Thompson, Bethany Thompson, Jill Thompson and Lisa Thompson.


A lot of good, and maybe not so good, tennis players will be at the Howard County General Hospital Sixth Annual Tennis Tournament and Social on Sept. 11 at the Howard Community College tennis courts.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the HCGH Health Sciences Library.

Highlights will include a serve and volley clinic at 8 a.m. and a potluck, round-robin tournament, including women's, men's and mixed doubles play, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Entry fees are $50 for the first category of play, $25 for the second category and $20 to be a spectator.

Information: 740-7810.

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