Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Balt County schools closing 3 hours early Wednesday

Because of forecasted heat.
http://www.bcps.org/status/

Sent from my cell.


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Crime report, including mugging at Towson parking garage

Read it here. I believe the robbery on a Saturday afternoon occurred at the Towson library garage.


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Baltimore County schools closing 3 hours early today

Because of heat. And city schools are on a half-day schedule.


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Dumbarton Middle students honored for participation in Books of Character Book Club


BCPS: "The Baltimore County Public Schools Books of Character Book Club is a system-wide opportunity for BCPS middle school students, teachers, parents, and community members to select books from a suggested reading list based on an identified theme relating to the BCPS Character Objectives. Students read selected books and engage in wiki discussions and activities related to the BCPS Character Objectives and the development of good character. ...

During the 2010-2011 school year, students from Dumbarton Middle School’s reading club submitted more wiki comments than any other group in Baltimore County – sharing thoughts about their personal experiences and themes from the books they read." More details here.

Way to go, guys!


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Friday, May 27, 2011

Where you're at biggest risk for Lyme Disease

FYI for those planning to enjoy nature this weekend:


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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Drowning doesn't look like drowning (what to watch for)


mariovittone.com: The new captain jumped from the cockpit, fully dressed, and sprinted through the water. A former lifeguard, he kept his eyes on his victim as he headed straight for the owners who were swimming between their anchored sportfisher and the beach. “I think he thinks you’re drowning,” the husband said to his wife. They had been splashing each other and she had screamed but now they were just standing, neck-deep on the sand bar. “We’re fine, what is he doing?” she asked, a little annoyed. “We’re fine!” the husband yelled, waving him off, but his captain kept swimming hard. ”Move!” he barked as he sprinted between the stunned owners. Directly behind them, not ten feet away, their nine-year-old daughter was drowning. Safely above the surface in the arms of the captain, she burst into tears, “Daddy!”
How did this captain know – from fifty feet away – what the father couldn’t recognize from just ten? Drowning is not the violent, splashing, call for help that most people expect. The captain was trained to recognize drowning by experts and years of experience. The father, on the other hand, had learned what drowning looks like by watching television. If you spend time on or near the water (hint: that’s all of us) then you should make sure that you and your crew knows what to look for whenever people enter the water. Until she cried a tearful, “Daddy,” she hadn’t made a sound. As a former Coast Guard rescue swimmer, I wasn’t surprised at all by this story. Drowning is almost always a deceptively quiet event. The waving, splashing, and yelling that dramatic conditioning (television) prepares us to look for, is rarely seen in real life.
Read more and find out what signs to look for:
http://mariovittone.com/2010/05/154/
We had a terrifying experience with this a few years ago when my daughter was a toddler. My husband and I were at the pool with our two kids (ages 2 and 4, maybe?) and he and I were in the water chatting while the kids played within arms reach of us. I glanced down at my daughter and she was floating face down in the water, after apparently losing her footing. Just like this article says, there was no splashing, yelling, or struggling. A minute or two more of not paying extremely close attention and the outcome could have been unbearable.


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Rodgers Forge resident pleads guilty to child porn charges

Read about it in The Sun.


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RFES has secretary job opening

http://www.schoolspring.com/job.cfm?jid=51037


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Councilman Marks' latest newsletter

Click image to enlarge.


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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Rodgers Forge board hires lawyer to fight homeowner's plans

(proposed back porch, above)

(existing back porch, above)

Note: The original photo I had posted of her planned porch was incorrect; what is pictured above now is correct.

The Rodgers Forge Community Association has hired an attorney to fight a homeowner's request to the county for a variance that would allow her to enclose her back porch.

The owner of 300 Hopkins wants to extend her kitchen so she can add a small powder room against the wall that is shared with the living room. She has a letter from her doctor stating that for medical reasons she needs a bathroom on the first floor. Last year she submitted a proposal to the board, which was denied. She modified the plan and was denied again. She submitted a third modified plan (her current plan, pictured above) and was denied again. She then decided to work directly with the county, as the covenants in that section of Rodgers Forge have expired and she doesn't need board approval to make changes to her home.

However, even though she is not extending her porch, the fact that it would be enclosed means she does not meet the county's setback requirements -- that is, the amount of space required between a home and the street or alley. So she has requested that the county give her a variance. The Rodgers Forge board is fighting that request.

Board president Jennifer Helfrich said she could not comment other than to say, "We [the board] don’t want her to have the variance granted. We support the county’s laws without a variance.”

This isn't the first time the two parties have disagreed about changes to the home. About 15 years ago the homeowner requested approval from the architectural committee to enclose her front porch with glass. Her request was denied, but because the covenants were expired, she got a permit from the county (there were no setback issues) and built it anyway. She said she now spends most of her time on the porch because it is filled with light.

The variance hearing had been set for May 27 but the board's attorney, J. Carroll Holzer, asked the county to postpone it because it did not work with this schedule. A new date has not yet been set.

Holzer is the same attorney who represented the board when it sued the homeowners at the corner of Murdock and Pinehurst over variance issues there. The owners wanted to extend their kitchen, which they said meant extending into their side yard; that met county setback rules. The board argued they were really extending the back of their home, which did not meet setback rules. (The house fronts Pinehurst but the board argued it faced Murdock.) The board lost the case, then appealed, and also lost the appeal. The homeowners have since moved. (Read about that case here.)

The owner of the Hopkins Road house, Christiane Rothbaum, said she has resigned herself to the fact that the county will probably defer to the board's wishes, although she has hired an attorney. Her architect also said she might lose, but he has taken photographs of other RF homes with similar additions that he hopes will bolster her case. See them here:


"I wish that the [Rodgers Forge architectural] committee would work with an architect first rather than a lawyer," said Rothbaum, whose native language is French. "I wish they would make some designs, and I know it’s complicated, but try to create some sort of lines that within you have to work. That would make people happy."


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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

MOM's Organic Market opening this weekend


I've never been to one of these -- anyone familiar with them? How's the selection, and are the prices good? They're going to have a bulk section, which sounds great. It will be located in Timonium in the same strip mall as Kohl's and Michael's and Old Navy. More info:
http://www.momsorganicmarket.com/common/news/store_news.asp?task=store_news&sid_store_news=95&storeID=A6B40AE98C7842A98FC8DE4784880288


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See a bunch of middle schoolers roaming the streets today?

It's because Dumbarton Middle is closed due to the fact that they don't have electricity. RFES is open, though.

http://www.bcps.org/status/


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Monday, May 23, 2011

Latest crime report

Read it here.


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Friday, May 20, 2011

Old Trail yard sale Saturday, May 21

Multi-family yard sale on May 21st from 8:30am until 12pm. Located on the 300 block of Old Trail Road.

Some of the things to be sold:
Artwork
CDs
Kid's battery-operated 4-wheeler
Remote control cars
Plastic kitchen
Pack n' Play
Baby gates
Britax car seat
Thomas the Train Table
Sit n' Stand stroller
Lots of toys from toddler through older kids
Baby clothes for boys


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Move and Groove kids' camp at Lynne Brick's


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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Find out what BCPS lunches contain


"The Baltimore County Healthy Kids Coalition filed a formal request for lists of ingredients contained in the entrees that are being served in BCPS elementary schools for the months of May and June 2011. This is information that is not posted on the BCPS website, nor is it readily available to parents.

We then asked a registered dietitian to peruse the ingredients and share her thoughts. Her comments are available alongside the ingredient lists."

Read more here:
http://www.baltimorecountyhealthykids.org/2011/05/healthy-kids-coalition-posts-list-of.html

By the way, did you know that sherbet counts as a fruit in our schools? That is: Clarified pineapple juice from concentrate (water and concentrated clarified pineapple juice), sugar, corn syrup, milk, cream, less than 2% of: guar gum, mono & diglycerides, xanthan gum, polysorbate 80, carrageenan, tetrasodiumpyrophosphate, citric acid, natural flavor, sweet whey, raspberry juice concentrate, nonfat dry milk, ascorbic acid (vitamin C), and FD&C red #40.


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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Rapture rapture everywhere


My husband saw this sign posted at the corner of Kenilworth and Charles today. Are you preparing for May 21?

Here's an NPR story about the subject:

... "Knowing the date of the end of the world changes all your future plans," says 27-year-old Adrienne Martinez.

She thought she'd go to medical school, until she began tuning in to Family Radio. She and her husband, Joel, lived and worked in New York City. But a year ago, they decided they wanted to spend their remaining time on Earth with their infant daughter.

"My mentality was, why are we going to work for more money? It just seemed kind of greedy to me. And unnecessary," she says.

And so, her husband adds, "God just made it possible — he opened doors. He allowed us to quit our jobs, and we just moved, and here we are."

Now they are in Orlando, in a rented house, passing out tracts and reading the Bible. Their daughter is 2 years old, and their second child is due in June. Joel says they're spending the last of their savings. They don't see a need for one more dollar. ... Full story here.


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Sign removed from West Towson Elementary


So, the sign is gone.


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O'Malley says he won't re-appoint two BCPS board members

First reported by Patch.com (read their story here), and the Sun also has a piece here.


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St. Pius carnival is this weekend


Details are available here.


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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Worksheet drills for preschoolers -- brilliant

New York Times: On command, Eze Schupfer [AGE 3] reads aloud the numbers on a worksheet in front of her: “42, 43, 12, 13.” Then she begins to trace them.

“Is that how we write a 12?” her instructor, Maria Rivas, asks. “Erase it.”

“This is a sloppy 12, Eze,” she says. “Go ahead: a one and a two. Smaller. Much better.”

Eze moves to 13.

“Neater,” Ms. Rivas insists. “Come on, you can do it.” Finally, she resorts to the kind of incentive that Eze, her pink glitter sneaker barely grazing the ground, can appreciate: “You’ll get an extra sticker if you can do a perfect 13.” (Read the full story here.)

Perfection demanded of preschoolers? Injecting 8-year-olds with Botox so they'll do better in beauty pageants? What is wrong with people?


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Monday, May 16, 2011

Thoughts on Kegasus?

What do you think of the Kegasus character for the Preakness? I must admit I thought it was pretty lame, but someone I know who is very successful in the advertising world said he thought it was clever. Now that there is an actual Kegasus thing walking and talking, I think I'm even more horrified, though. What do you think of it?


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Latest crime report

Read it here.


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George Clinton/Parliament Funkadelic coming to the Recher

See them right here in Towson on June 13.

Tickets:
http://www.missiontix.com/events/product/11474/george-clinton--parliament-funkadelic


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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Stoneleigh yard sale postponed

Because of rain. It is now scheduled for May 21 from 9 am to noon.


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Friday, May 13, 2011

Will new Towson Green development help downtown?


As you've probably noticed, there is a new housing development coming to Towson, behind Wilson Lighting, off York Road. What do you think, will this help liven up downtown Towson? (Which is in desperate need of livening up.)


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Thursday, May 12, 2011

Deadline to run for Rodgers Forge board is July 14

Details will be coming soon, but FYI, the deadline for letting the board know you want to run for a seat on the RFCA board in the fall election is July 14. So put it on your radar if it's something you've considered doing.


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Steel Magnolias this weekend

Woodbrook Players at Brown Memorial
May 14 at 8 pm and May 15 at 3 pm
http://www.bmwpc.org/schedule.html


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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Rodgers Forge Elementary faculty and staff say "thank you"


An open letter to the parents and community of Rodgers Forge…

The faculty and staff of Rodgers Forge Elementary School would like to take this opportunity to say a heartfelt “THANK YOU” for the many kindnesses and expressions of appreciation you shared with us as part of Teacher Appreciation Week. Flowers, smoothies, special mugs and handmade candy, sweet treats of every kind, cupcakes, breakfast, lunch and hundreds of cards made us all feel really special and valued last week.

Teaching is hard work but it is work we are proud of and feel is important. What makes it especially great for us is that the community in which we work, your community, is so generous with its time and talents in support of what we do. You respond to our needs, are diligent in keeping your community safe, offer solutions when problems arise and advocate for your families.

Most importantly, though, you send us wonderful kids and trust that we’ll do right by them. We work hard to keep that trust. So thanks for saying thanks! It means a lot!

With gratitude,
The Faculty and Staff at Rodgers Forge


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Plant sale and sustainability weekend in Roland Park

This weekend in Roland Park. Buy native plants, learn about composting and more. Details here:
http://www.rolandparknative.org/web/SevenGenerationsWeekend2011.html


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John Waters book signing this Saturday evening

Saturday, May 14 -- 7:00PM -- Atomic Books in Hampden.
http://www.atomicbooks.com/calendar.html


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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Stoneleigh Yard Sale is this Saturday

The annual Stoneleigh Spring Yard Sale will be Saturday, May 14, from 9-12. The rain date is Sunday, May 15.
http://www.stoneleigh21212.org/event


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Loyola women's lacrosse game this Saturday

The Loyola University Maryland women's lacrosse team not only made the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2004, but they get to host a home game against Massachusetts in the first round this Saturday, May 14 at 1 pm at the Ridley Athletic Complex.

Here's a link to more information: http://www.loyolagreyhounds.com/sports/w-lacros/spec-rel/050811aaa.html

Tickets: https://secure.imodules.com/s/958/ecommerce.aspx?sid=958&gid=7&pgid=846&cid=1984


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Feet on the Street starts this Friday

Every Friday night starting May 13, 2011 through September 30, 2011 from 6:00pm till 9:30pm, Towson Chamber of Commerce, Lite 101.9 and Towson Times will sponsor a Block Party on Allegheny Avenue, between Washington Avenue and York Road.

There will be live music; wonderful summertime food provided by local restaurants, ice cream, snow cones, beer, wine and some special activities for children’s entertainment. Bring your family, friends and your lounge chairs, but please leave your pets at home. Inexpensive and convenient parking will be available.


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Monday, May 9, 2011

Latest crime report

The latest crime report is a rather scary one, though nothing in RF. Read it here.


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"BPA-free" not as great as it sounds

Here's an interesting New York Times article about what manufacturers are using instead of BPA in their plastics.

"Manufacturers might be removing BPA, a chemical used to harden certain plastics, from their products, but they are substituting chemicals that may be just as dangerous, if not more so."
Read the article here:
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/09/opinion/09browning.html?_r=1


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Friday night concerts begin again at Belvedere Square

Enjoy gourmet food and drinks from the restaurants and market at Belvedere Square all while listening to the sounds of summer through some of Baltimore’s hottest bands!

Every Friday, May 13 through September 16, 6-9 pm.

This Friday, it's the Crawdaddies.


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Saturday, May 7, 2011

You have until noon to dump

Thanks to the RF board members who organized and volunteered for this event, and to the Towson U students who helped out.


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Great-looking dahlias at Ayd Hardware right now


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Problems with kids' clip-on chairs

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warns consumers that some "metoo" clip-on table top chairs, imported by phil&teds USA Inc., of Fort Collins, Colo. put young children at risk of serious injury due to multiple safety hazards. CPSC is urging consumers to stop using some metoo clip-on chairs immediately.

http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml11/11218.html


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Friday, May 6, 2011

Towson Commons theater closing

Read about it here:
http://www.explorebaltimorecounty.com/news/113229/towson-commons-terminates-amc-theater-lease/


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Dog wash

Girl Scout Troop 2820 is having a dog wash tomorrow - Saturday - at 3 p.m. It will take place in the driveway behind 312 Hopkins Rd.(alley between Hopkins, Dunkirk, Heathfield and Dorking). There will also be dog walks, dog treats and a bake sale of human treats!

Thanks so much!
-Diana


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Bunk beds recalled for safety hazard

The wooden side rails that run from the headboard to the footboard and hold the bunk bed’s mattress in place can split and cause the bunk bed to collapse, posing a fall hazard to consumers.

Sold at: Walmart, Kmart and Target stores and online at www.walmart.com, www.kmart.com and www.target.com from September 2004 through September 2009 for about $190.

Details and photos:
http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml11/11214.html


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Reminder: Dumpster Day is tomorrow

Saturday, May 7, 8 am to noon in front of RFES. You must be a Rodgers Forge resident to use the dumpsters, so bring your driver license.

Acceptable items: yard waste, paper, mattresses, carpet, metal waste, appliances with freon. (Correction: NO APPLIANCES OR ELECTRONICS. There was a misprint in the newsletter; these items will *not* be accepted.)

AmVets will be there to take reusable furniture and working computers.

The Loading Dock will take undamaged wood and most other materials that can be used in the building and home-construction trades.

Unacceptable items include: tires, paints, gasoline containers, propane tanks, electronics, anything explosive.


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Part of York Road in Towson closed; water main break

Details here:
http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/baltimore-county/bs-md-co-water-main-break-20110505,0,1664628.story


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Free Comic Book Day is May 7


Free Comic Book Day is a single day - the first Saturday in May each year - when participating comic book shops across North America and around the world give away comic books absolutely FREE to anyone who comes into their stores. Check with your local shop for their participation and rules. www.freecomicbookday.com


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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Sex-offender alert

From the Wiltondale Citizens on Patrol:
"The following information is being distributed by several area schools and neighborhoods. You may remember that a few years ago a registered sex offender was seen in the Roland Park area. More recently, he was seen at Tropicool on Falls Road, in clear violation of his parole, which requires him to stay away from places where children congregate. He was not eating italian ice but was watching children. After he was confronted, he reacted badly and was jailed on that parole violation. Since then, he was released, and this past week he has been seen twice at the Royal Farm store on Falls Road driving his red VW Cabriolet. If you observe him in violation of his parole, please call 911."


Photo here.


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Urban Outfitters coming to Towson

Read about it here. I personally am reminiscing about the days when I could fit into their clothes.


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Correction: No appliances or electronics at Dumpster Day


No computer equipment, cords, televisions, VCRs, DVD players, telephones, cell phones and the like. Nothing that could contain hazardous waste. There was a misprint in the newsletter but please note that these materials will *not* be accepted.

For information on what to do with old electronics, you can visit this Baltimore County site:
http://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/Agencies/publicworks/recycling/ecycling.html


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Volunteers needed for Dumpster Day

It's this Saturday morning. If you can assist with this very helpful and popular event, contact RFCA board member Janine Schofield at jcschofield(at)yahoo.com. Be the "someone else" who does it!


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In praise of Maryland Poison Control

From a friend of mine in Rodgers Forge:

At 730a yesterday my husband called me at work to tell me that a bottle of children’s liquid medication was sitting on the bathroom sink, lid off, contents gone…did I know anything about this? I had given my feverish, 2-year-old daughter the recommended dose for her age/weight at 5am, put the childproof lid back on and left it in the box and on the sink as a reminder for my husband should she need follow up dosing.

We determined that sometime between 645a (when I left for work) and 730a (when my husband entered the bathroom and found the empty bottle), our 4-year-old son had consumed 2 to 3 ounces of the medication. Either I did not have the cap on securely, or as my new BFF Eric at Poison Control suggested, since children have a much higher frustration threshold than adults, my son worked it until it came off.


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Oceanic does have cheaper gas

JAG wasn't kidding in his comment when he said they consistently have lower prices. At York and Seminary.


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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Community yard sale this weekend

Gaywood Community Yard Sale—HUGE!
Sat. 5/7 8am-1pm
200 & 6400 blks Blenheim Rd; 200 blk Gaywood Rd
(Raindate 5/21)

Also this:
"Sat May 28th 9AM-3PM
100 block of Brandon Rd. North of Stevenson Rd.
All the things I never got around to selling on EBAY!
"


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Gas prices in the Towson area

I did a post recently about the discount you can get at Shell gas stations using points from Giant stores (read it here). Someone commented that Shell gas prices are higher than other places so you're not necessarily getting a deal. I wondered if that was true so I zipped around to a few stations today to check it out. These were all taken within 15 minutes of each other. I know gas prices can change, but this is what I found in my little expedition.

Above is the Gulf at York and Stevenson. (Their digital sign didn't show up in photos.)

Above is the Exxon at Charles and Stevenson.

Above is the Sunoco at Charles and Stevenson.

Above is the Exxon station at York and Bosley.

Above is the Shell at York and Fairmount.


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Reminder: Dumpster Day is this Saturday

May 7, 8 am to noon in front of RFES. You must be a Rodgers Forge resident to use the dumpsters, so bring your driver license.

Acceptable items: yard waste, paper, mattresses, carpet, and metal waste.

AmVets will be there to take reusable furniture and working computers.

The Loading Dock will take undamaged wood and most other materials that can be used in the building and home-construction trades.

Unacceptable items include: tires, paints, gasoline containers, propane tanks, anything explosive, and electronics.


What do you think? Post or read comments here: Comments

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Cylburn Arboretum Market Day is this weekend

Preview sale is Friday, May 6 from 4 pm to 7 pm

Market Day is Saturday, May 7
8 am to 3 pm

Offering Annuals & Perennials, Native Plants, Shrubs & Trees, Vegetables & Herbs Gardening Demonstrations, Mother's Day Gifts, Kid's Activities, Used Book Sale & Raffle, Food & Drink. Details here.


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Monday, May 2, 2011

Holistic Wellnes Fair at Govans Presbyterian this Saturday

Saturday, May 7, 10am-4pm

Holistic Wellness Fair FlyerEnjoy talks, workshops and information tables about holistic practices for all ages - including special activities for kids! Topics/workshops include reiki, accupuncture, yoga, tai chi, nutrition, spirituality and wellness, and many more. Before you leave, take some time to walk in our outdoor labyrinth.

This fair will be a service to our community by exposing people to the wide variety of physical and spiritual paths to wellness.

Details:
http://www.govanspres.org/govanspres/wellness_fair


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Latest crime report

Looks like the Royal Farms was targeted again, but this time the police caught the suspects. Read the report here.


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Garden Festival at Ladew

May 7 -- Join us for an exclusive collection of dealers featuring hard to find perennials and annuals, unusual exotics and container specialties plus decorative furniture, urns, statuary and other architectural treasures.

Priority Preview Sale: 8 am – 10 am; $75 for members, $100 for non-members, includes Ladew membership, first chance shopping, continental breakfast, and lecture with Founding Director of Horticulture, Wave Hill, Bronx, NY, and Honorary Chair Marco Polo Stufano.

General Admission Sale: 10 am – 5 pm; $15 for Sale, $25 Sale + Lecture (seating is limited). please note: Admission to Ladew on Saturday, May 7 is $15 for all visitors, members included.

http://www.ladewgardens.com/index2.html


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The Sound of Music starts this weekend

The Children's Playhouse of Maryland, in residence at the Community College of Baltimore County, Essex, presents The Sound of Music 1 p.m. weekends May 7-8, 14-15, 21-22. A special 4 p.m. May 15 show will be Sign Language Interpreted by student interpreter interns from the CCBC Interpreter Preparation Program.

Performances will be given in the J Building Lecture Hall, CCBC Essex, 7201 Rossville Boulevard. Tickets, $10 general admission and $8 for birthday parties or scout troops, are available from the CCBC Box Office at 443-840-ARTS (2787) weekdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and at the door, space permitting.

http://baltimore.broadwayworld.com/article/Childrens-Playhouse-of-MD-Presents-THE-SOUND-OF-MUSIC-Beginning-58-20110428


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Sunday, May 1, 2011

Tortoise found

(Image has been removed because the tortoise is now home. Not everyday you see a "tortoise found" sign, though.)

We spoke to the woman posting the signs. She found him in the middle of the road in Rodgers Forge.


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Rodgers Forgian comes up with new official slogan for Towson

Read about it in Patch.com. Congratulations, Katie!


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