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COMMUNITY NOTES

The Baltimore Sun

'Choose Civility' magnets available

The Howard County Library has "Choose Civility" car magnets in stock. The magnets are part of an initiative that includes 40 partners, led by the library, to position Howard County as a model of civility.

The project - funded by Friends of Howard County Library, The Horizon Foundation and Howard County General Hospital - is intended to enhance the quality of life in the county and emphasize the importance of civility for those who live and work here.

"Choose Civility" is intended to guide people to make choices that will result in improved mental, physical and spiritual health.

The book by P.M. Forni, founder of the Johns Hopkins Civility Project, Choosing Civility: The Twenty-five Rules of Considerate Conduct, is available at library branches. The magnets are intended to be used on cars. A $1 donation is requested.

A Choose Civility Spring Symposium is planned from 8 a.m. to noon May 14.

Information: Kelli Shimabukuro, 410-313-7763.

County to celebrate the legacy of King The Howard County Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Commission will present its 23rd celebration of the life and legacy of the civil rights leader at 3:30 p.m. Sunday at Long Reach High School, 6101 Old Dobbin Lane, Columbia.

This year's theme is "The Importance of the Dream: 40 Years Later." Admission is free.

Featured this year are speakers and entertainment from the Washington-Baltimore region, including musical selections by Annie Dash and Ron Oaks, and a performance by slam poet Gayle Danley. The keynote speaker will be Carl O. Snowden.

Audrey Barnes, a reporter for WUSA9 in Washington, will be master of ceremonies. Barnes, twice nominated, won an Emmy for her documentary on the Joffrey Ballet school.

The commission will present its Commission Award will be presented to a person who exemplifies the spirit of King's message. Cash awards will be given to student contest winners from Howard County for their essays on King and his legacy.

People who attend are asked to support the commission's food drive for the needy by taking a canned food item to the event. There will be an opportunity to sign up for community service projects.

Information: Office of Human Rights, 410-313-6430.

Candidate forums to be rebroadcast A forum for candidates for the Board of Education, held Jan. 8 by the League of Women Voters of Howard County and the PTA Council of Howard County, will be rebroadcast on channels 42 and 72 at 1 p.m. and 8 p.m. Jan. 26 and Feb. 5 and 9, and at 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Feb. 11.

A forum for candidates running in the primary election for Congress in the 3rd and 7th districts, held Jan. 10, will be rebroadcast on Gtv channels 70 and 44 at 12:30 p.m. Jan. 29-31 and 8 p.m. Jan. 30 and 12:30 p.m. Feb. 1-11; evening broadcasts are scheduled at 9 p.m. Feb. 1 and 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Feb. 2, 3, 9 and 10.

Information: Barbara Russell, 410-730-4024.

Transportation Board '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 held at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Tyson Room of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City.

The sessions begin a six- to nine-month process to prepare a five-year transit development plan. Route structure, frequency of service, on-time performance, condition of vehicles, customer service, demand and other factors will be studied.

Ridership on Howard Transit is expected to exceed 900,000 trips this fiscal year.

To request a sign-language interpreter at the meeting, call 410-313-6401 (TDD) at least three days in advance. To request transportation to the meeting, call 410-313-1921 at least three days in advance.

Register for primary election by Tuesday

The deadline to register to vote in this year's presidential primary is 9 p.m. Tuesday, which also is the deadline for certain voters to request a change in polling place.

To vote in the primary, 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 the Board of Elections.

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

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.

An elderly or disabled voter who is unable to reach the assigned polling place must request reassignment to a more convenient polling place by 9 p.m. Tuesday. The form to request reassignment is available at www.elections.state.md.us (type "polling place reassignment" in the search field).

Closings scheduled on King holiday Howard County government offices, courts, animal shelter and library branches will be closed Monday in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The landfill will be open, and regular trash and recycling services are in effect. Parking meters must be fed.

Arts celebration planned in April 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. Also, planned are 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.

In 10 years, the celebration has raised more than $700,000 for arts grants in the community.

Information: 410-313-ARTS or www.hocoarts.org.

The Arc plans raffle fundraiser 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, 11735 Homewood Road, Ellicott City.

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 or reservations: 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.

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

Trees can be dropped off from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily through Monday at these 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, upper Court House Drive, Ellicott City.

Schooley Mill Park, 12975 Hall Shop Road, Highland.

Savage Park, 8400 Fair Street, Savage.

Western Regional Park, 14800 Carrs Mill Road, Woodbine.

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

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

Trees must be no taller than 4 feet; taller trees must be cut to 4 feet. Decorations, including lights and tree stands, must be removed. Trees sprayed with artificial 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 Monday, 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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