Adopt a family and toy collections for needy children are prevalent at this time of the year, but seniors in need are often overlooked.
Therefore, Parkville Senior Center is sponsoring an "adopt a senior" drive. The center has the names and requests of four local seniors in need, as identified by social workers from the Baltimore County Department of Aging.
The center has a list of items needed for each senior, and center members and residents are invited to donate gifts and nonperishable food items through Dec. 14. All gifts will be wrapped and delivered to the seniors.
This is the second year the center has sponsored this sort of drive. Bonnie Riehl, assistant center director said, "The response last year from center members and the community was supportive and generous, so we are repeating the project."
Residents who would like to donate may drop off items at the center, 8601 Harford Road, between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, or call the center at 410-887-5338 for more information.
During the recent American Education Week observances, Pleasant Plains Elementary School offered a new program, Parents/Guardians and Pastries, for adults and their young students. The gatherings were offered on two mornings. Breakfast consisted of pastries, juice and coffee — provided by the Corner Bakery of Towson and ShopRite of Perring Parkway.
Parents or guardians were also provided with ideas to generate conversation at home, and learned how playing card games can help the child learn basic math skills such as computation, number recognition and number concepts of higher and lower and odd/even numbers.
Attending families also received a copy of the conversational starters, and a deck of cards with game instructions to play at home.
Arnolia United Methodist Church, 1776 E. Joppa Road, is extending an invitation to the community to its upcoming cantata, "A New Birth, A New Beginning" on Sunday, Dec. 16, at 11 a.m.; and also to the church's Christmas Eve candlelight services at 7 and 10 p.m., with a candlelight organ concert at 9:45 p.m.
Then, on Sunday, Dec. 30, the church will host a Service of Lessons and Carols at 10:30 a.m., followed by brunch.
Contact the church at 410-665-7005 for more information about these and other programs.
The Loch Raven Festival of the Arts, a free music and visual art celebration, was held Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Loch Raven United Methodist Church, 6622 Loch Raven Blvd.
The event included Santa's Holiday Decorations Workshop for children, as well as the art gallery featuring works by local artists David Zobel, Dean Davis, Ellie Elgin and Delores Courtney.
The event also featured a performance by Unified Voices of Johns Hopkins, a gospel choir that works through music to bridge the gap between Hopkins and the historic East Baltimore community. The group is under the direction of Gregory Wm. Branch. Other performing groups included the Baltimore Flute Choir and the Joyous Voices.
Organizers also collected canned goods for the Assistance Center of Towson Churches, making the event a truly uplifting way to celebrate the season of giving. It was also a wonderful way for church members to prepare for Loch Raven UM's 60th anniversary.
Belated birthday wishes go out to Lacey Beard whose birthday was Nov. 29. Happy birthday!