The Baltimore Sun

Arc holding a benefit raffle

The Arc of Howard County is selling raffle tickets for a home-theater system with 50-inch plasma television. The tickets cost $25 each; 1,000 tickets will be sold.

The winning ticket will be drawn at a Super Bowl social to be held from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Jan. 31 at the Arc's offices. Refreshments will be served.

The Arc was started by a group of parents in 1961 as an advocacy and support group. The organization provides housing, job placement, vocational training and individual and family-support services to people with cognitive and developmental disabilities and their families.

Information: 410-730-0638.

Transportation group to meet

Transportation Advocates will meet from 7:45 a.m. to 9 a.m. Tuesday at the Bain Center, 5470 Ruth Keeton Way, Columbia.

Gregory F. Hamm, the new regional vice president and general manager of Columbia for General Growth Properties, will present an overview of the company's vision for downtown Columbia, its potential to be more convenient for pedestrians and to support alternatives to private cars, and its role in regional transportation.

There will be an opportunity to ask questions.

Information: 410-992-1997.

Neighbor Ride seeks volunteers

Neighbor Ride, a volunteer-based supplemental transportation program for Howard County seniors, is looking for qualified volunteers. Daytime, evening and weekend drivers are needed. Volunteer ride coordinators to assign rides are needed Monday through Friday for three or four hours. Orientations are scheduled at the Neighbor Ride office, 8808 Centre Park Drive, Columbia, at noon Jan. 11 and at 7 p.m. Jan. 16.

Information: 410-884-7433, or contact

Residents can track snowplows

Howard County residents can track the progress of snowplows by visiting the county's home page:, and clicking on the snowflake icon. A snow-tracker map will show the location of plows, untreated roads, salted roads and plowed roads. The maps are to be updated every 15 minutes.

Each county snow vehicle is equipped with a global-positioning device to allow residents to track its real-time progress during a storm.

Residents can also call 410-313-2900 for information about the county's on maintenance efforts during a storm.

Recycle your Christ mas trees

The Howard County "Merry Mulch" program allows county residents to recycle their Christmas trees at parks, garden centers and at the landfill. Since its inception in 1993, the program has kept thousands of trees out of the landfill, helping the county's budget and its environment.

Recycled trees will be delivered to the composting site at the Alpha Ridge Landfill, to be made into compost and mulch.

Trees can be recycled from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, through Jan. 21, at these drop-off sites:

Kendall's Hardware, 12260 Route 108, Clarksville; River Hill Garden Center, 12165 Route 108, Clarksville.

Cedar Lane Park, 5081 Cedar Lane, Columbia; Grandfather's Garden Center, 5320 Phelps Luck Drive, Columbia.

Rockburn Park, 5400 Landing Road, Elkridge.

Small Circuit Court parking lot on upper Court House Drive, Ellicott City.

Schooley Mill Park, 12975 Hall Shop Road, Highland.

Alpha Ridge Landfill composting site, 2350 Marriottsville, Road, Marriottsville. The landfill is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Savage Park, 8400 Fair Street, Savage.

Western Regional Park, 14800 Carrs Mill Road, Woodbine.

Eastern county residents with yard-trimming collection services can set their Christmas trees out on the regular curbside recycling collections days, through Jan. 21.

Trees must be no taller than 4 feet high; taller trees must be cut to 4 feet. Decorations, including lights and tree stands, must be removed. Flocked trees (with artificial sprayed snow) cannot be recycled. Christmas trees and other recyclable items should be put out for collection the night before, or by 6 a.m. on collection day.

After Jan. 21, Christmas trees can be brought to the Alpha Ridge Landfill from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Information: 410-313-6444.

Lunch with elected officials

The League of Women Voters of Howard County will hold its annual luncheon with the county delegation to the General Assembly at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow in the auditorium of Bethany United Methodist Church, 2875 Bethany Lane, Ellicott City.

There will be an opportunity for questions.

The event is open to the public. The cost is $15 for nonmembers.

The league will also hold a forum for congressional candidates from the 3rd and 7th districts at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Tyson Room of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City.

The forum will be broadcast live on Gtv channels 44 and 70. The public is invited.

The league will also hold a forum for Board of Education candidates at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the boardroom at the Department of Education, 10910 Route 108, Ellicott City.

The PTA Council of Howard County will co-sponsor the forum, which will be broadcast live on Channel 72.

Information or to reserve a place: 410-730-0142.

Election forum to be held Jan. 12

AAIHC (African-Americans in Howard County) will hold a presidential primary election forum from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 12 at St. John Baptist Church's Agape Hall, 8910 Route 108, Ellicott City.

The forum will cover major public offices and candidates for the Howard County Board of Education.

Information: Sherman Howell, 301-596-5240.

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