Goodman on 'Tracks' with novel built on short stories

June 30th saw the debut of local resident Eric Goodman's second book and first novel, "Tracks: a Novel in Stories."

Many of us know this Rodgers Forge resident's wonderful first book, "Flightless Goose," a children's story.

Well, now adults can thrill to Eric's work. He tells us that "These linked stories show how strangers on a train (Amtrak train from Baltimore to Chicago) can touch each other."

You may have heard Eric reading excerpts from his book on the National Public Radio show, "The Signal."

He'll be at Artscape this coming weekend, July 16 and 17; at Greetings and Readings on July 23; and at the Ivy Bookstore, July 27 at 6:30 p.m.

"Those Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer" may have been a hit in l961, but 50 years later, summer days mean marathons, fundraisers and other big doings.

One such event is the July 20 game between the Aberdeen IronBirds and the Brooklyn Cyclones game at Ripken Stadium — benefitting the locally-based Red Devils organization.

Red Devils is a nonprofit created to improve the quality of life for breast-cancer patients and their families.

The organization is based here in Towson, and our own Gaywood resident, Tricia Hayden, is service manager for the Red Devils.

The special "Christmas in July" game will certainly cool temperatures, as the entire stadium will be decorated for Christmas — lights, trees, gingerbread houses and a visit from Santa!

In addition to the holiday mood, a special raffle to help the Red Devils will be held.

The prize alone is worth the trip: An official Major League baseball autographed by Orioles' player Vladimir Guerrero, and four VIP, fully catered suite tickets to a 2011 Orioles home game (on a mutually agreeable date between winner and Orioles) will be raffled.

Game tickets are $20, raffle tickets are $5 each, or five for $20. All tickets may be purchased online by July 23, at

Hayden tells us that tickets are in high demand, and she hopes enough will be available — so get yours soon.

Hammers and buzz saws are common sounds at St. Pius X School this summer, as preparations are made for the first Archdiocesan Primary Montessori School.

More than two months of renovations will make four classrooms ready for the Montessori program.

A $15,000 grant from the Raskob Foundation for Catholic Schools was awarded to St. Pius X so that Montessori materials could be purchased for the classrooms.

Although schools are closed for the summer, we'd like to mention some notable highlights of the last few weeks involving local schools:

• Cheryl Milligan, chair of Towson High School's art department, left for Xian, China, as part of Baltimore County Public Schools' Chinese Exchange Program. She is, indeed, the perfect representative.

• Local residents Elsa Haarstad and Molly Thorne won the painting and photography awards, respectively, at Towson High's Senior Awards Night.

• And the Dumbarton Middle School Show Choir received first prize in the Parks Music Competition at Hershey Park. Isabelle Gordon won the gold medal for her solo, "I'll be There."

A round of applause to each of you!

Although July 14 commemorates the fall of that horrid French prison, Bastille Day has become quite a day of celebration for Francophiles and Americans in the United States.

Till we meet again ...

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