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The Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission received the 2014 Maryland Sustainable Growth Commission Award for Leadership and Service — for accomplishments that advance public appreciation, understanding and promote smart growth — at a reception Feb. 5 in Annapolis.

The award, presented by Maryland Sustainable Growth Commission Chairman John Laria, recognized SMADC’s “demonstrated commitment to connecting farms and food to residents, creating healthy communities and helping transition former tobacco farmers to prosperous alternatives,” according to an SMADC news release.

Members of SMADC were present to receive the award and a citation from the Maryland General Assembly presented by Del. Sally Y. Jameson (D-Charles).

The award ceremony included a video presentation that illustrated SMADC’s achievements and featured ongoing land preservation initiatives and programs that encourage and assist the region’s transitioning farms to diversify into other profitable alternative agricultural crops and products, the release states.

“This award is truly a ‘we’ award, reflecting the vision and hard work of the entire Commission and staff,” Christine Bergmark, SMADC’s executive director, said in the release.

The awards celebrate achievement by individuals, businesses, organizations and local governments to realize the 12 planning visions adopted by the Maryland General Assembly to develop and implement sound growth and development policy.

For information on SMADC’s programs, go to

Chamber plans networking event

Charles County Chamber of Commerce will hold a Network at Noon event until 1:30 p.m. Feb. 20 at the Hilton Garden Inn at 10385 O’Donnell Place in Waldorf.

The cost is $15 for members and $25 for nonmembers. Call 301-932-6500 to register.

Tantallon to stage ‘Seven Guitars’

Tantallon Community Players will perform August Wilson’s “Seven Guitars” 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 3 p.m. Sundays from Feb. 21 through March 2.

The 1940s installment of Wilson’s “Pittsburgh Cycle” explores one African-American man’s fight for his own humanity, self-understanding and self-acceptance in the face of personal and societal ills. The play is described as “part bawdy comedy, part dark elegy and part mystery,” according to a Tantallon news release.

Performances are at the John Addison Concert Hall at Harmony Hall Regional Center at 10701 Livingston Road in Fort Washington. Go to

Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for students and seniors. The troupe also will hold auditions for “Annie” 7 to 9 p.m. Feb. 24 and 25, with callbacks as needed Feb. 26 at Harmony Hall.

Interested actors should prepare 16 bars of a musical theater song not from the show. Roles are available for ages 5 and older.

College stages Alexander’s bad day

The College of Southern Maryland will present “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” at 7 p.m. March 7 and 2 and 7 p.m. March 8 at the Fine Arts Center on the La Plata campus at 8730 Mitchell Road.

Alexander is having a bad day. A horrible day. To be quite honest, it’s a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. But then, everybody has bad days, sometimes. In this delightful adaptation of her popular book, Judith Viorst sets Alexander’s rather trying life to music and brings to the stage one of America’s feistiest characters, according to a college news release. Alexander’s struggles with life’s daily dramas will not only entertain but educate young audiences, the release states.

Tickets are $7 for adults and seniors and $5 for youth through high school.

For tickets, contact the box office at or call 301-934-7828.

La Plata accepting vendor applications

The town of La Plata is accepting vendors for the town’s spring Celebrate La Plata festival to be held noon to 4 p.m. April 26.

There is no charge for vendors. Space and applications will be accepted on a first come, first served basis. There are only 48 spaces available, and very few have access to electricity. Vendor must provide tables, chairs and pop-up tent if desired. Only one home party sales vendor per space will be accepted.

Go to for a crafter or vendor application. Go to for a food vendor application.

Submit an application by mail to Town of La Plata, 305 Queen Ann St., P.O. Box 2268, La Plata, MD 20646, fax 301-934-5724 or email Submit a completed form in order to have a space reserved. Applications will be confirmed by email with more information provided closer to the event. Call 301-934-8421.

Spring registration starts Feb. 24

Registration for county spring sports leagues will be held from Feb. 24 through March 14.

Adult softball league play will start the week of April 23 at Laurel Springs Park and White Plains Regional Park. The franchise fee is $600 to $650 per team.

Adult co-ed kickball league play will take place Tuesday nights at White Plains Regional Park. The franchise fee is $450 per team.

Men’s soccer league play will take place Monday nights at White Plains Regional Park. Games will be 11-on-11 format on a regulation-size soccer field. The franchise fee is $550 per team.

Men’s over-35 soccer league play is Wednesday nights at Laurel Springs Park. Games will be seven-on-seven format on an intermediate-size soccer field. The franchise fee is $450 per team.

Women’s soccer league play will take place Sundays at Laurel Springs Park. Games will be seven-on-seven format on an intermediate-size soccer field. The franchise fee is $450 per team.

Team registration is 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays at the Charles County Department of Public Works office at 1001 Radio Station Road in La Plata.

Call 301-932-3470 or 301-870-2778, or go to

All-State Community Band auditions set

Columbia Bands announced the 2014 Maryland All-State Community Band. The celebration of music will take place Aug. 2 and 3 and will feature talented community concert band musicians throughout Maryland under the direction of Harlan Parker of the Peabody Conservatory.

All musicians who are active in a community concert band in Maryland and are 21 by Aug. 2 are invited to audition. The band will rehearse Saturday and Sunday morning and perform Sunday afternoon. The concert will be held 3 p.m. Aug. 3. in Howard County. A nonrefundable audition fee of $15 will cover an anonymous, professional adjudication. A participation fee of $85 for those who are selected will cover the costs of the conductor, meals, music and a CD recording of the performance.

Go to to see audition selections. Go to for an audition application. Newtowne Players use a little arsenic

The Newtowne Players will stage “Arsenic and Old Lace” through March 2 at the Three Notch Theatre at 21744 S. Coral Drive in Lexington Park.

Meet the charming and innocent ladies who populate their cellar with the remains of socially and religiously “acceptable” roomers, the antics of their nephew who thinks he is Teddy Roosevelt and the activities of the other nephew.

Natural resources camp scheduled

Natural Resources Career Camp will be July 20-26 at the Hickory Environmental Education Center at 604 Pride Parkway in Accident.

Join high schools students from across the mid-Atlantic at the weeklong camp to explore careers and college studies in natural resources. NRCC is a perfect experience for students interested in a career in the fields of forestry, arboriculture, wildlife, ecology and natural resources management, according to a news release.

Field activities include GIS boundary data collection, climbing trees with arborist equipment, conducting a stream survey exercise and touring a sawmill.

Throughout the week students work in teams. Each team creates and presents a forest management plan.

At Career Night, natural resource professionals — forestry, wildlife, urban forestry, fire control, fisheries and bear management — share their job experiences. Meet representatives from the University of Maryland, Penn State, West Virginia University, Allegany College of Maryland, Frostburg University and Garrett Community College.

Students have the option to earn two college credits for successful completion of the week of studies and projects.

Go to the NRCC tab at

Grape growers to hold grapevine workshops

The Maryland Grape Growers Association is registering attendees for its annual grapevine training and pruning workshop 9 a.m. to noon March 1 in St. Mary’s County. The exact location of the vineyard and the instructor’s contact information will be provided after registration.

To register online and for more information including mail-in forms, an agenda and driving directions, go to

The clinics will educate both new and seasoned growers on the best practices for trellising, training and pruning grapevines of varying ages and varietals, according to a grape growers’ news release.

Other viticultural practices including disease and weed control, fertilization, vineyard equipment and safety also will be addressed.

The cost of each clinic is $15 for MGGA members and $26 for nonmembers.

The clinics will be held rain or shine. Bring pruning shears, and be sure to dress for the weather.

Partnership announces STEM initiative

The Patuxent Partnership announced it will be the organization sponsor of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics — Inspiring the Next Generation — STEM-ING, a local initiative that will host a one-day event that aims to heighten awareness of STEM and STEM careers in middle school girls.

The event takes place May 3 at St. Mary’s College of Maryland and is open to girls in sixth through eight grades from Southern Maryland. TPP actively is seeking volunteers, sponsors and in-kind and monetary donations to support the initiative. STEM-ING aims to expand beyond the currently targeted audience of female middle school students by including male middle school or female high school students in future initiatives, according to a partnership news release.

The STEM-ING event will introduce girls to local STEM professionals, positive role models and fun, hands-on workshops to introduce the girls to STEM through challenging, engaging and practical ways.

Workshop materials, lunch, snacks throughout the day and all activities will be included for 140 student participants. The company name and logo of all donors will be recognized on STEM-ING program materials, T-shirts and social media for donations received no later than April 7.

To make a tax-deductible contribution, send a check to The Patuxent Partnership and include “STEM-ING” in the memo field. Mail checks to 22335 Exploration Drive, Suite 1035, Lexington Park, MD 20653. Contact Cam Donohue at 301-757-0322 or, or MaryKay Myers at 301-866-4096.

Scholarships offered for high school grads

The Margaret Brent High School Alumni Association is offering scholarships to June high school graduates entering college for the first time. An applicant must be a direct descendant of an alumnus of Margaret Brent High School in Helen between the years 1931 and 1965, before the high school became a middle school. Other requirements are listed on the application to be submitted to the scholarship committee.

Call Clarence Bowles at 301-769-2630. The deadline is March 31 for applications to be turned in to Bowles, scholarship chairman.

Citizens group sets candidate forum

A Charles County commissioner candidates forum, hosted by Citizens for a Better Charles County, will be 7 to 9 p.m. June 4 at the Jaycees center at 3090 Crain Highway in Waldorf. Attendees will have a chance to meet the candidates for commissioner, hear them present their platforms and answer questions on county issues. Citizens for a Better Charles County is a nonpartisan civic organization and has held the forum for the past five county election cycles.

Call 301-753-6754.

Bluegrass concert planned at Legion

Jay Armsworthy and the Sons of the American Legion will present a “Women in Bluegrass Spectacular” at 2 p.m. March 16. Doors open at noon.

America Legion Post 238 is at the intersection of routes 381 and 231 in Hughesville.

Concert will feature Dale Ann Bradley, along with Chris Tenney and Riverside South.

Tickets are $15 and are available in advance and at the door. There is no reserved seating.

Food will be available for sale beginning at noon for a separate price by the Sons of the American Legion.

For more information, call 301-737-3004 or go to

‘Elephant’s Graveyard’ at college

College of Southern Maryland drama department will stage “Elephant’s Graveyard” by George Brant at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 20 and 27 and 8 p.m. Feb. 21, 22 28 and March 1 at the Fine Arts Center on the La Plata campus at 8730 Mitchell Road.

Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for military, seniors and youth.

“Elephant’s Graveyard” is the true tale of the tragic collision of a struggling circus and a tiny town in Tennessee, which resulted in the only known lynching of an elephant. Set in September 1916, the play combines historical fact and legend, exploring the deep-seated American craving for spectacle, violence and revenge, according to a college news release.

To order tickets, contact the box office at or 301-934-7828.