Many Central County young people know how to handle a hammer and saw because of the Severna Park United Methodist Church annual Appalachia Project.
Church Youth Director Lee Ferrell, who has headed local participation in the national mission program for a dozen years, led this year's group of 45 youths and 13 adults and young adults.
To her, the most important aspect of the project is not that the young people are eager to work under the hot sun from early morning to late afternoon for five long days repairing homes. It's the project's long-term effect on the volunteers.
Ferrell asks participants: "How is this project going to help you be involved in the local community when you return home?"
She wants the youngsters, who range from 10th-graders to high school graduates, to understand that their role as servants of God can continue.
Sponsored by the United Methodist Church, the nationwide mission project just celebrated its 25th year. The Severna Park congregation has been part of the project for 14 years.
Work on the July trip begins in January. The $10,000 to $12,000 required for the project is gathered through fund-raisers and support from the church.
"This was a very positive year," says Ferrell. "The recipients were most grateful, pitching in to help."
The Virginia residents were concerned that the volunteers were away from home on the 4th of July. But they arranged for fireworks, and Ferrell admits that there is no better watermelon than those grown in Appalachia.
SPUM participants were divided into two teams: one, supervised by Ferrell, working in Tazewell, Va., the other, led by Ray Guhse, in Coeburn, Va. The smaller groups enabled volunteers to work with people from other states. This year, co-workers were from Michigan, Wisconsin and Texas.
One of the project leaders was Anne Arundel County builder Woody Hancock. Combining his knowledge with the young people's hard work, the church crew was able to replace the roof and an exterior wall on one house, and improve the interior of another.
"We are very proud of our young people," says Ferrell. "They handled themselves very well. They have made Severna Park very proud."
Anne Arundel Community College invites professional artists to enter an all-media juried exhibit this fall, "Nature View."
Washington Post art critic Lee Fleming will be the juror for the Oct. 31 through Nov. 23 show in the Pascal Center for Performing Arts gallery.
Entries must be postmarked by Oct. 3.
For details, contact Chris Mona at 541-2510.
Archbishop Spalding High School welcomes nine new teachers to its staff.
Teaching English will be Patricia Snyder, who has taught in Columbia and Baltimore, and Gregory Wise, who is currently working on his master's in instructional systems development at the University of Maryland.
New math teacher Roger Yarnell taught in Pennsylvania.
Roland Amos, a former Russian language instructor for the National Cryptologic School, will teach Russian II.
Marie Helene Field is a native of France and technical translator, editor and bilingual production assistant for Translingua Inc. She will teach French and Spanish.
Daphne Corbett Carr, who studied in Spain, will teach Spanish.
Michael Mason of Ellicott City, who is attending St. Mary's Seminary pursuing a master's degree in Theology, will teach religion.
Margaret Lanni, who received the Golden Apple Award for Outstanding Teacher, 1993 at St. Mary High School, Rutherford, N.J., will teach social studies.
Beth Hough, who is choir director and organist at the main post chapel at Fort Meade and a choral judge and music arranger-copyist for the U.S. Army Field Band, will be a part-time chorus teacher.