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Ellicott City: Students dominate at PTA Council of Howard County's Reflection Awards night

The Silhouette Stages Brian Best Memorial Scholarship is named in memory of Mt. Hebron graduate and Ellicott City resident Brian Best, who in the past 30 years was a major influence on county theatrical productions. He died in 2011 at 52 years old from a battle with lung cancer. This photo from 2007 shows Best with an “Avenue Q” puppet he purchased especially for a Silhouette Stage Cabaret Night performance.
The Silhouette Stages Brian Best Memorial Scholarship is named in memory of Mt. Hebron graduate and Ellicott City resident Brian Best, who in the past 30 years was a major influence on county theatrical productions. He died in 2011 at 52 years old from a battle with lung cancer. This photo from 2007 shows Best with an “Avenue Q” puppet he purchased especially for a Silhouette Stage Cabaret Night performance. (Submitted photo)

It was a big night for Ellicott City students at the PTA Council of Howard County's Reflection Awards night — the culminating event at the county level for the national PTA student art competition.

The Reflections program gives students an opportunity to artistically interpret an annual theme through film, dance, musical composition, photography, visual arts and literature. This year's theme was "Diversity Means...". Awards were given to the top three winning entries in each category and age group.

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Of the 66 county Reflection program awardees, more than half were Ellicott City students representing 14 area elementary, middle and high schools.

Elementary schools winners: Sophie Seitchik, Emma Miller and Yeorum Hu (Waverly); Rebecca Lassman, Hannah Souba, Thomas Lee, Madeline Harris, Arash Izadyar and Henry Bar-Or (Centennial Lane); Elizabeth Jackson, Iris Nagieka and Aidan Meyer (Worthington); Jay Kline, Evan Miller, Frederick Jorgenson, Ashlyn Bonner, Jillian Sanders (Northfield), Jocelyn Torres and Isabela Torres (Triadelphia Ridge); Katalina Hill (Veterans); Khiem Doan (Hollifield Station); and Sydney Bivens (Manor Woods).

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Middle schools winners: Mary Yu (Dunloggin); Julie Wang, Lara Cahow, Polly Moser and Jisoo Choi (Burleigh Manor); Melissa Flint (Bonnie Branch); and Benjamin Selnick, Bailey Heneghan, Paige Caine and Barbara Brewer (Folly Quarter).

High schools winners: Mitchell Kennedy (Mt. Hebron) and Anusha Natha and Juhi Divivedi (Centennial).

Centennial Lane Elementary student Rebecca Lassman earned the distinction of being the only county student this year to win in multiple art categories. Lassman won a second-place award of excellence for visual arts and a first-place award outstanding interpretation of theme for music.

The top three county winners will be entered in the state level competition. The winner at the state level in each art category and age group will proceeds to the National PTA competition. Congratulations to all the winners and participants of this year's Reflection program.

Calling all High school girls! It's not too early to think about prom. Here's an opportunity to get a great deal on a prom dress and donate to a great cause.

The American Red Cross of the Chesapeake Region will host its annual Project Prom Dress resale Sunday, Feb. 26 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Dancel Family Center YMCA, 4331 Montgomery Road, in Ellicott City. The sales will offer gently used prom and party dresses, shoes and accessories.

All items are dry cleaned and sold at discount prices and 100 percent of the proceeds benefit the The American Red Cross of the Chesapeake Region.

A few months ago, the county lost a shinning star in the theater community when Ellicott City resident Brian Best lost his battle with cancer at the age of 52. Over the past 30 years, the Mt. Hebron High School graduate was involved in all aspects of theatrical production including performing, directing, building and designing sets in county theatrical productions at Howard County Summer Theater, Toby's Dinner Theater, Howard County Players, Centennial Players, Shadow Block Productions and Silhouette Stages. He also was a trusted friend and mentor to countless Howard County performers.

To honor Best's memory and his contributions to our community, Silhouette Stages Inc., announced the creation of the Silhouette Stages Brian Best Memorial Scholarship for students involved in performing arts in Howard County. For more information or if you would like to contribute to the scholarship, email Mo Dutterer at mo@silhouettestages.com.

Speaking of theatrical productions, don't miss Silhouette Stages' production of the smash Broadway hit, "Avenue Q The musical." Silhouette Stages is proud to be the first group in the region to be granted show rights.

"Avenue Q The Musical" runs March 2-11 at 8 p.m. (Fridays and Saturdays) and at 3 p.m. (Sundays) on the Slayton House stage in Columbia's The Wilde Lake Village Green. Tickets are available online ($18 for adults and $15 for students and seniors) by going to the Silhouette Stages' website at http://www.silhouettestages.com and clicking the link "Seat Yourself On-line Ticketing."

Centennial High School mathematics instructional team leader Elaine Whalen and mathematics instructor Thersa Dowling, teacher sponsors of the high school's new mathematics honor society Mu Alpha Theta, had the pleasure of inducting 48 students into the honor society's inaugural class.

Congratulations to the Mu Alpha Theta Centennial High school chapter inductees: Aneesh Agrawal, Ashi Agrawal, Noor Ahmad, Guru Ambalavanar, Jennifer Baik, Caroline Baker, Jordan Baruch, Dania Benalla, Hyogene Cha, Hua-ren Cherng, Se Hyun Cho, Su Cho, Jordan Coburn, Caitlin DeLatte, Arlynnell Dickson, Diogenes Dichosos, Megan Fullarton, Julia Gao, Qiyi He, Tim Holzberg, Sowa Imoisili, Simone Jensen, Ja On Kim, Koog-Hyeon Kim, Dobrynya Konoplev, Dai Yun Kwon, Katie Kwon, Jung Sup Lee, Seung Lee, Alice Liu, Rachael Mady, Hanna McKown, Nicole Mize, Samantha Mongilio, Anusha Nathan, Harsha Neerchal, Dhrisya Raman, Gregory Richmond, Alison Santori , Clarissa Santori, Andreas Seas, Sarah Seo, Jeffrey Sham, Sauradeep Sinha, Manna Varghese, Alexandria White-Torruellas, Nouran Younis and Emily Zhang.

Here's more Miller Branch "Library Finds." Did you know that the new library branch houses more than 250,000 items — 53 percent more than the original Miller Branch collection. Included in the collection are a beefed up world language section that boasts books and DVDs in 25 different languages including Chinese, Korean, Hindi, Russian, Spanish, Vietnamese, and Arabic.

The audio visual material was also increased by 30 percent and includes popular and classic movies, historical documentaries, exercise and how-to videos. Need access to a free computer? The library has 100 web accessible computers equipped with word processing software. If you need a calm, relaxing space to read or study, use one of the library's nine designated quiet study rooms.

Last chance to buy tickets......The Miller Branch Library will be transformed into the Evening in the Stacks: Masquerade! gala Saturday February 25th at 7:30 p.m. The annual Howard County Library System's fundraiser benefits the Library's educational initiatives, including A+ Partners in Education and Project Literacy. For ticket information call the Library at 410-313-7750.

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