Officials to thank bus commuters

As part of Clean Commute Month in May, Harford Commuter Assistance officials will personally thank bus commuters for their efforts to help reduce traffic congestion and air pollution by using an alternative to driving alone.

Transit officials will hand out thank-you bags at various bus stops along MTA's routes in Harford County.

Bus commuters receiving gift bags will be asked to fill out a short survey enclosed with the goodies. Commuters completing the survey will be eligible to win a gift certificate from Chili's or for a round of golf and lunch for two at Mountain Branch Golf & Grille in Joppa.

Thank-you bags will be distributed at the following park-and-ride sites: Tuesday at Marywood; Wednesday at MVA; Thursday at Hickory; May 9 at Fallston; May 10 at Cheyenne; and May 11 at Havre de Grace, Otsego Street.

Surprise distributions will be made at other MTA bus stops in the county.

Information: 410-638-3103, ext. 1387.

SHA to hold meeting on safety upgrades

The State Highway Administration will hold a community informational meeting for its proposed safety improvements at the intersection of Level Road (Route 155), Paradise Road (Route 462) and Paradise Road (county section) in eastern Harford County.

The meeting will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the Level Volunteer Fire Company, 3633 Level Village Road, Havre de Grace.

SHA representative Randall Scott, assistant district engineer for traffic, and Harford County Department of Public Works staff will give a brief presentation of several concepts for improvements at the intersection and have displays for viewing.

State Sen. J. Robert Hooper, Dels. Barry Glassman and Joanne S. Parrott, and County Councilman Lance C. Miller have been invited.

Information: 800-962-3077.

Warning system to be tested monthly

Harford County Emergency Operations Center officials will begin monthly testing of the county's new Southeastern Warning System (SEWS) at 4 p.m. Wednesday, and will continue testing the first Wednesday of every month.

The All-Hazard System is designed to alert the public to severe weather emergencies, hazardous-material incidents, floods or other incidents that might require mandatory evacuations.

Three sirens are in Aberdeen at Aberdeen Middle School, A.B. Demarco Memorial Park and Hillsdale Elementary School; and three in Havre de Grace at Old Bay Lane and Old Post Road, Havre de Grace High School and the Bulle Rock Water Tower.

Other sirens are at Otter Point Road and U.S. Route 40; Chelsea Road and Baltimore Gas and Electric Generating Station in Perryman; U.S. Army Winters Run Water Treatment Plant in McComas; Fort Hoyle Road south of Trimble Road in Magnolia; East of Joppatowne Elementary School; Yorkshire Drive and Harford Square Drive in Edgewood; Freys Road and Rivershore Court in Rivershore; Mariner Point Park in Joppatowne; and Edgewood High School.

During the monthly test, sirens will sound for 30 seconds followed by a digitized voice message announcing "Test. Test. This is a test of the emergency warning system. This is only a test. If this had been an actual emergency, you would have been instructed to tune to either Harford Cable Network or the designated emergency alert stations (WXCY 103.7 FM and WHFC 91.1 FM). This is only a test."

In a real emergency, sirens will sound for three minutes, followed by a digitized voice message with instructions where to listen for information.

After an emergency, when the situation is considered safe, the sirens will be activated for one minute followed by a digitized voice message announcing, "All clear. All clear. The emergency situation is over. All clear."

All messages will be repeated.

Every county household was mailed an Emergency Public Information Calendar in December that contains important information on procedures to follow in the event of different emergencies.

Information: 410-638-4029.

Nature center offers Twilight Canoe Trips

The Eden Mill Nature Center will offer Twilight Canoe Trips on Deer Creek for ages 7 to adult Tuesdays and Thursdays from Tuesday to Sept. 28 at the center, off Eden Mill Road in Pylesville.

Programs will begin at 5:45 p.m. with an introduction to paddling and safety, and end about 8 p.m.

The trips acquaint paddlers with the natural surroundings, both land and water, on Deer Creek at Eden Mill. A naturalist will provide environmental education and interpretation.

Canoes, paddles and lifejackets are provided. Children ages 12 and younger must be accompanied by an adult.

The fee is $4 for members and $6 for nonmembers. Registration is required.

Information: 410-836-3050.

Community unity day set for Saturday

Unity in the Community Day will be held from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday in Franklin Park in Aberdeen.

Unity in the Community's mission is to create fellowship among churches and community organizations through song and dance.

The event will feature performances by the Unity in the Community adult choir and youth chorale, as well as appearances by choirs, groups and ensembles from around Harford and Cecil counties.

Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele is scheduled to appear and other community leaders will speak.

Proceeds from the festival will be used to promote new youth and senior citizen programs in Harford County.

Information: 443-910-6118 or 443-655-7802.

Restaurants to show Bel Air pupils' art

Diners at Bel Air restaurants next month will find their plates resting on place mats featuring award-winning artwork done by fourth-graders from Homestead/Wakefield and Bel Air elementary schools, Harford Day School and St. Margaret's School.

The contestants in the Bel Air Historic Preservation Commission's 2006 Preservation Week Contest are eligible to win a variety of prizes. This week's theme for Preservation Week is "Sustain America: Vision, Economics and Preservation."

The young artists will be honored at tomorrow's Town Board meeting at 7:30 p.m. at Bel Air Town Hall, 39 Hickory Ave. A reception for the contestants and historic area property owners will follow at Rockfield Manor, 501 Churchville Road.

Information: 410-879-9500.

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