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State of county address to be given twice Tuesday

The Baltimore Sun

County Executive Ken Ulman will deliver his State of Howard County address twice Tuesday. Following a practice he started in his first year in office, Ulman will present the address first at the Howard County Chamber of Commerce annual luncheon, which is a ticketed event for chamber members, the business community and guests.

Ulman will deliver the same address at 7 p.m. in the Banneker Room of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive in Ellicott City. The evening presentation will be open to the public and carried live on Gtv, the county's government information station.

The Chamber of Commerce program is to start at noon and will be held at the Turf Valley Resort and Conference Center in Ellicott City.

Information or tickets to that event: 410-730-4111.

Soroptimist Interna tional to meet Thursday

Soroptimist International of Howard County will hold a dinner meeting at 6:15 p.m. Thursday at Bob Evans Restaurant, 4900 Beaver Run Court, Ellicott City.

Projects, community service, and Soroptimist Awards programs will be discussed.

The international volunteer service organization for business and professional women works to improve the lives of women and girls around the world. The Howard County group meets on the third Thursday of each month.

Information or reservations: Karen Trennepohl, 410-750-9413.

Opportunities for minorities to be discussed

The Y of Central Maryland will bring together a panel of community leaders, scholars and activists to discuss opportunities for minority and low-income neighborhoods in Baltimore City during its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast at the Baltimore Convention Center.

The event, to be held from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. Tuesday, is to include Dr. Ben Carson, director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital; singer and community activist Lea Gilmore; Dante Wilson, founder of Reclaiming Our Children and Community Project Inc. in Baltimore City; and Thibault Manekin of Seawall Development Co. and former director of an international youth program now called Peace Players.

Marc Steiner of WYPR will lead the discussion, which is to be at the Baltimore Convention Center.

Tickets are $75. Proceeds will benefit the Y's Black Achievers Program and other Y urban youth programming.

Information: Mia Staton, 410-837-1077, ext. 223.

The Y of Central Maryland maintains about 100 program sites across the state.

Transportation panel plans 'listening sessions'

The Howard County Public Transportation Board will hold the first of several "listening sessions" to hear concerns, comments and recommendations for the future of Howard Transit, the county's local bus service.

The first session will be at 7 p.m. Jan. 22 in the Tyson Room of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City.

The sessions will begin a six-month to nine-month process to prepare a transit development plan for the next five years. The plan will examine the existing route structure, frequency of service, condition of the vehicles, customer service and other factors.

It will also evaluate demand based on projected residential and employment growth.

Ridership on Howard Transit is expected to exceed 900,000 trips during the current fiscal year.

To request a sign-language interpreter for the meeting: 410-313-6401 (TDD). Requests should be made at least three days in advance. Requests for transportation should be made at least three days in advance: 410-313-1921.

Deadline for registration in Feb. primary is Jan. 22

Deadlines are approaching for the 2008 presidential primary election. The deadline to register to vote and the deadline for certain voters to request a change in polling place is 9 p.m. Jan. 22.

To vote in the primary, election, Maryland residents who are eligible but not yet registered (including 17-year-olds who will be 18 on or before by Nov. 4) must complete a voter registration application and mail or hand-deliver it to a the Board of Elections.

A hand-delivered application must be received by the local Board of Elections by 9 p.m. Jan. 22; a mailed application must be postmarked by Jan. 22.

Registered voters who have moved since the last election must provide their current address information to the local board by the same deadline.

To request a voter registration application: 800-222-VOTE.

Arts celebration to be held April 26

The Howard County Arts Council has announced its 11th Celebration of the Arts in Howard County, which will be held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. April 26 at Jim Rouse Theatre for the Performing Arts in Columbia.

The gala will feature a reception from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. with a silent auction of work by local artists, gourmet food from area restaurants and caterers and musical performances on the Main Street Stage.

After the reception, guests are invited into the theater for presentation of the Howie Awards and the Rising Star Competition for young performing artists. The audience will choose three winners to receive prizes of $5,000, $2,500 and $1,000.

Barbara K. Lawson, president and chief executive officer of the Columbia Foundation, is the gala's honorary chairwoman.

The celebration has raised $741,650 for arts grants in the community in the past 10 years.

Information: 410-313-ARTS or

Arc of Howard County is holding benefit raffle

The Arc of Howard County is selling raffle tickets for a home-theater system with a 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 Arc 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.

Recycle your Christmas tree

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 only 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.

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