The Charles County Fair is looking for Queen Nicotina contest applicants for this year’s fair.

All contestants must meet the following requirements:

• Must be a resident of Charles County for at least four years.

• Must be sponsored by a recognized Charles County civic or educational organization.

• Must be unmarried.

• Must be a senior at a Charles County high school who plans to continue her education or a freshman at the College of Southern Maryland during the school year 2019 or a senior commuting daily to high school.

• Must be a student in good standing, morally and scholastically, with a C or better average.

• The entry form must be signed by the president of the sponsoring organization and a school official at the last school attended.

• Must be present at the judging which will be held Friday, Sept. 6, at the Charles County Fairgrounds. The judges will select from the contestants who are present a court of 13.

Applications must be postmarked no later than midnight Aug. 26. The application form is available online at Mail applications to: Louise Stine, 5185 Colebrook Drive, La Plata, MD 20646.

The Guide fall edition available Aug. 15

The Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism fall edition of The Guide will be available online on Thursday, Aug. 15, at The Guide contains information on park locations, community events, sports leagues, after school programs, aquatic programs, historic sites and places to visit within the county.

Read The Guide and see what programs are of interest. Online registration for most programs is available. Connect with the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism and find out more about its programs on their Facebook page at

For more information on other events and opportunities offered by the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism, visit or call 301-932-3470.

Scholarship doubled for tax-free week

Shop Maryland Tax-Free Week is underway, meaning big savings for shoppers and a chance for students attending a Maryland college or trade school to win a scholarship, simply by posting their shopping experience on social media through Aug. 17. The University System of Maryland Foundation has announced that it will match the $2,500 top prize provided by the Maryland Retailers Association if the winner attends a member institution, meaning a total prize of $5,000, according to a Maryland Comptroller’s Office press release. In addition, USM institutions may individually choose to add on to this amount with their own matching scholarship, meaning the prize could go even higher.

During tax-free week, which runs through midnight on Saturday, Aug. 17, any single qualifying article of clothing or footwear priced $100 or less — regardless of how many items are purchased at the same time — is exempt from the state’s 6% sales tax. The first $40 of any backpack purchase is also tax-free.

Once again, entering the contest is simple. Eligible students simply need to: take a fun photo or video while shopping; write a catchy caption; and post to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and use the hashtag #shopmdtaxfree.

After tax-free week, the MRA will select the two entries that best reflect the spirit of the contest and announce the winners.

Chesapeake Charities seeks award nominations

Chesapeake Charities is calling for nominations for the following prestigious awards: Philanthropist of the Year, Nonprofit of the Year and Volunteer of the Year. The awards will be presented at its annual Celebration of Charity luncheon on Nov. 14 at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club in Stevensville. The deadline to submit nominations is Friday, Aug. 23.

Chesapeake Charities is asking the community at large to submit nominations. Philanthropist of the Year will recognize an individual who has demonstrated outstanding generosity and community leadership. Volunteer of the Year will honor someone who has gone above and beyond in fulfilling their service role. Nonprofit of the Year will be presented to an organization that has consistently provided vital support to communities and families. The Governor Larry Hogan Scholarship for cancer research will also be presented at the event.

The Celebration of Charity awards luncheon has become a hallmark for recognizing those who give in extraordinary measure. In 2016, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) was honored for the courage and leadership he displayed while waging a personal battle against cancer during his first year in office. In 2017, those on the front lines of the opioid crisis were recognized for their efforts to educate the public about opioid misuse and rehabilitate individuals recovering from addiction.

The 2017 honorees included Talbot Goes Purple, Farming for Hunger and the Samaritan House. Last year, the event recognized The Wills Group, Mark Freestate and the Light House Homeless Prevention Support Center for their efforts to lift Maryland families out of poverty.

The deadline to submit nominations is 5 p.m. on Aug. 23. Nomination forms can be obtained online at or by calling Chesapeake Charities at 410-643-4020. Nominees must be from one of the eight counties served by Chesapeake Charities: Anne Arundel, Calvert, Caroline, Charles, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot.