Charlotte's Quest name is official


ON SUNDAY, Charlotte's Quest Nature Center will be officially named to honor the memory of Charlotte Collett, its founder who passed away Aug. 19.

Collett was a tireless visionary of educational experiences for people in Manchester. A retired schoolteacher, her final quest was to provide environmental education for everyone.

The idea flowered with the opening of the octagonal nature center seven years ago, development of nature trails through Pine Valley Park, weekend nature programs, and visits by pupils from Manchester Elementary School. From the start, volunteers have supported the project.

After the rededication of the center Sunday, Native American interpreters will present activities from their culture and traditions from noon to 5 p.m.

The public can visit a teepee, hear stories and see Native American dances. Such a program had been Collett's desire for many years.

Bird and wildflower walks will be given on trails through woodland, meadow and natural springs.

Steve Miller, from Manchester's Public Works Department, will lead walks to the town's springs and water sources.

Games, crafts, food and Smokey Bear's fire safety tips will be featured.

Caricature artist Joe Hollingsworth will draw pictures for a small fee from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. All other activities are free.

"Charlotte always stressed the importance of academics by equally important belief in the knowledge of the environment.

"The nature center has given everyone the opportunity to become environmentally literate," writes Sharon Hughes, treasurer and Web site master for Manchester Parks Foundation, which oversees the park.

The rain date is May 19. Charlotte's Quest is at the end of Wilhelm Lane.

Information: or 410-374-3395 and leave a message.

Bingo and baskets

Basket bingo is a phenomenon at Shiloh Middle School, where gourmet desserts are served, dozens of door prizes and specialty games are dealt, and a cash-and-carry table lets the not-so-lucky take home affordable nifty items.

This year, all proceeds from the Mother's Day Bingo on May 11 will help finance a free-standing outdoor sign for school announcements.

"We'll put up a brick frame for the backlighted sign. The school name is engraved on wood. It's very pretty," said Dawn Ros, who is helping organize the bingo.

Ros said she was looking for the less-visible businesses that might wish to sponsor a basket at donation levels of $25, $50 or $75, or send items to fill baskets.

Shiloh Middle pupils have sent in $2.50 each to sponsor baskets, from Longaberger Co., which are valued at $70 - before they are filled with goodies. The four specialty baskets retail at $200.

Donations that don't fit a theme basket find a place on the silent auction or cash-and-carry tables.

Those items include Danielle Steele novels, teapots-for-one, teapots with matching mugs, Barbie collectibles, salt and pepper shakers, decorated tins, a torso-tightening exerciser, and collectible bells.

At 5 p.m., doors open for hot dogs, chicken salad and pasta salad. Baked goods and beverages are served continuously. Games start at 6:30 p.m., and the rich gourmet desserts made by Karen Donaldson are served at intermission.

Tickets sold before May 11 cost $12. On May 11, they cost $15. Tickets provide 20 games of regular bingo. Four specialty games will be played. Bingo takes place in the cafeteria of the school, 3675 Willow St., Hampstead.

Tickets: Karen Donaldson, 410-876-1734 or Dawn Ros, 410-239-6136.

Pat Brodowski's North neighborhood column appears each Wednesday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

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