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HCC graduation scheduled Friday

Commencement exercises for the 37th Howard Community College graduating class will begin at 4 p.m. Friday on the college campus, 10901 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia.

Graduates from the spring 2008 semester and 2007 summer and fall semesters will receive their degrees. HCC benefactors Patrick and Jill McCuan will receive honorary degrees.

The Boyd Commencement Address will be delivered by Gov. Martin O'Malley. The graduate address will be given by HCC student Amena Ali.

The ceremony will be broadcast live by HCC-TV and can be seen at or on Comcast of Howard County channel 71.

The Nursing Recognition Ceremony honoring the college's graduating nurses will be held at 11 a.m. Friday on the college's campus, and not at noon, as previously announced.

Information: 410-772-4800; TDD, 410-772-4023.

'Green' talk at Soroptimists

Soroptimist International of Howard County will hear a talk by Joshua Feldmark, director of the Howard County Office of Environmental Sustainability, who will speak about "Howard County Going Green."

The talk will be given at the group's dinner meeting at 6:15 p.m. tomorrow at the Cafe de Paris, 8808 Centre Park Drive, Columbia.

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

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

'Phantom' stars appear at benefit

Three Broadway stars of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera (Cris Groenendaal, Craig Schulman and Kevin Gray) will perform at 6:30 p.m. Monday at Toby's Dinner Theatre of Baltimore in a benefit for The Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts.

The theater arts program for children, founded in 1972 by Toby Orenstein, offers a conservatory program, summer camps, participation in theater productions and outreach to at-risk youth.

A cocktail reception before the main performance will be followed by CCTA student entertainers and a silent auction.

Tickets are $75. Toby's in Baltimore is at 5625 O'Donnell St. Information: 410-381-0700 or e-mail, info@CCTArts .com.

'Wine in the Woods' set this weekend

The Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks will present its 2008 Wine in the Woods celebration from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday in Symphony Woods in Columbia.

Visitors can sip wine from a souvenir glass, listen to live music, shop at artisans' displays, eat and watch a wine demonstration.

Admission is $20 in advance, $25 at the gate. Designated drivers pay $20. Ages 4-20 pay $5.Information: 410-313-4700 or 410-313-7275; text telephone, 410-313-4665; or

Business financier holds fundraiser

A small-business financier in Howard County, j-ref, will hold its fifth annual fundraiser celebrating entrepreneurship, "j-ref's Bipartisan Bash," from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. tomorrow in the Rouse Company Foundation Student Services Hall, Howard Community College, 10901 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia.

Tickets are $50, and include hors d'oeuvres, beer and wine, door prizes and a 50/50 raffle.

Reservations are required. Information: 410-313-6170 or

Yard sale benefits animal advocacy

Animal Advocates of Howard County will hold its annual "PAWSitively Huge Yard Sale" from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in the Applications and Research Laboratory parking lot, 10920 Route 108, Ellicott City. The rain date is Monday.

Furniture, children's clothes, books, home decor and other items will be for sale. Baked goods and refreshments will be available to purchase.

Donations of gently used household items are welcome, and the donation is tax deductible. Information: 410-880-2488, ext. 3 or

Senior Day planned Saturday at center

The Coalition of Geriatric Services and the Howard County Office on Aging will present Senior Day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Bain Center, 5470 Ruth Keeton Way in Columbia.

Panels will discuss "Essential Legal Documents" from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.; "Looking at the Next Stage" from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; "Senior Care Programs at the Office on Aging" from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.; and "Aging: What's Normal, What's Not" from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Admission is free.

Providers of senior services will have booths offering free information.

Admission is free and open to everyone. Refreshments will be served through the day.

Information: 410-997-0610 or

Spring Social to be held Monday

The Howard County Advisory Board of Family and Children's Services of Central Maryland will hold a Spring Social from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday at Victoria Gastro Pub, 8201 Snowden River Parkway in Columbia.

The event, which is to include networking, a brief program and food and drink, is designed to introduce the agency's services to the community and raise funds.

Admission is $50. Sponsorships, which include on-site recognition and two tickets, are $500.

Family and Children's Services has offices in the Wilde Lake Village Center in Columbia and the Whiskey Bottom Shopping Center in North Laurel.

Tickets: e-mail courtney(at) or visit Information: 410-997-3557 (Columbia) or 301-498-7509 (North Laurel).

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