New England sailing excursion reveals autumn's early start ANNAPOLIS/SOUTH COUNTY -- Davidsonville * Edgewater * Shady Side * Deale


You read it here first, perhaps: In western Connecticut, trees are already starting to change color.

Lovely, just an occasional sparkle of color by the road, or on the hills. The only trouble with the process is that I'm totally unprepared for fall.

I was in New England for the World Disabled Sailing Championships, organized this year by the National Handicapped Sports and National Ocean Access Project. Annapolitan Chris Murphy was its project coordinator.

There were 19 boats -- 210s (made in Baltimore) representing 11 countries. The two American entries came in first and fourth, with Spain and Norway taking second and third.

The weather was great, the wind was strong enough, often enough, to make the action interesting, and the competition and camaraderie were intense.

* It is exciting to see more and more opportunities opening for people with disabilities to enjoy the things most of us take for granted. A local example is Maryland Hall's new AUDEX infrared listening system being installed in the auditorium for the hearing impaired.

The listening receivers will be available to patrons of the Annapolis Symphony, the Ballet Theatre of Annapolis and the Annapolis Chorale on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no charge for use of the device. People who own their own infrared receiver also will be able to use it, as all infrared systems are compatible.

For further details, call 263-5544.

* The timing could perhaps have been better, but the pool at the Anne Arundel Olympic Swim Center will reopen while it's still warm enough to need it. The facility reopens at 8 a.m. Saturday. Registration for fall swimming classes and activities begins Tuesday, Sept. 7, also at 8 a.m.

* A canoe tour of the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center being planned for Saturday, Sept. 18. A maximum of 17 people can participate. The trip is through the auspices of the Shady Side Rural Heritage Society. A Smithsonian guide will accompany the group to discuss the wildlife encountered on the tour.

A continental breakfast will be served at the Captain Salem Avery House Museum at 8:45 a.m. Car pools will take participants to the Smithsonian Center for the start of the tour, at 10 o'clock. A $5 fee covers admission to the center and the breakfast.

Information or reservations: Terri Packard at (301) 261-5168.

* The county school system's Office of Continuing Education is offering three courses for boaters this fall: "Boat Maintenance and Repair" (10 weeks); "Boating Safety and Seamanship" (14 weeks); and "Coastal Piloting" (seven weeks).

All three courses will be offered at Annapolis High School. "Boat Maintenance" also will be offered at Severna Park High School, and "Boating Safety" will be offered at South River High School.

There are fees for each course.Complete information, including fee schedules and complete course descriptions, are in the adult education brochures at all county libraries.

Mail-in registration continues until Sept. 10. Walk-in registration will be Sept. 20 and 21 at the class locations. Information: 222-5384.

* Why do deadlines seem to come more frequently as fall approaches?

Entries for the Anne Arundel County Fair's Cutest Kid Show must be postmarked by tomorrow.

The show is on Sept. 18. Judging is on health and personality, with children assigned to one of eight classes (Class 1 is age 1, Class 8 is age 8).

To enter your tot, send a $5 check made out to the Anne Arundel County Fair to: Baby Show, 778 General's Highway, Millersville 21108. Include the child's name, birthday, and class of entry, and a parent's name, address and phone number.

* Another opportunity for kids, and for adults too, is the auditions being held by the theater group, Pamoja, on Sept. 1 to 3.

The theater troupe is assembling a multiracial cast, with ages from 6 to 70, for "The Wiz," which will run from Oct. 28 to Nov. 14.

Participants should wear comfortable clothes, and be prepared to move and sing. An 8 1/2 -by-11 photo and a resume are helpful. The auditions will be at the Unitarian Church of Annapolis, 333 Dubois Road, at 6 p.m.

Information: 269-6536.

* The Annapolis Senior Center is offering a new course for the fall semester, focusing on how to do genealogical research and how to put together a family history.

The course will be given on Fridays at 12:30 p.m. at the Senior Center, 701 Glenwood St., beginning Oct. 8. Registration will be accepted from Sept. 1 to 16.

There is a $20 Anne Arundel County Community College fee for the course. Information: call the Senior Center at 222-1818.

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