COMMUNITY NOTES

Helping hungry schoolchildren: Caring Cupboard, a program that provides food baskets for struggling Shepherdstown elementary and middle school children on weekends, is requesting donations. Launched by Shepherdstown Lutheran Church and now endorsed by the Shepherdstown Ministerial Association, the program initially gave out four baskets each week at the start of the 2011-12 school year and now provides more than 70. Anyone may leave contributions or cans of soup, peanut butter, tuna and other non-perishable foods addressed to “Caring Cupboard” at Four Seasons Books at 116 W. German St., Shepherdstown. Any foods not included in local baskets will be delivered to the Jefferson County Food Bank. Send questions to Johncase4218@gmail.com.

Volunteers sought: YoungLives, which provides resources and support for young mothers, is looking for volunteers to provide childcare from 6 to 9 p.m. on the first, third and fourth Thursday of each month. Volunteers can help on just one Thursday a month or all three. Volunteers must be 18 or older and pass a background check paid for and completed by YoungLives. They will be helping with children ages newborn to age 3. YoungLives is also looking for mentors and committee members.

For details, contact Jill Bevins at jillbevins@gmail.com or 304-919-1681.

For your pet: Spay Today, the local reduced-cost spay and neuter program offers new locations in Cumberland, Md., and in Moorefield and Petersburg, as well as Culpeper, Va. At the time of surgery, tests and shots can also be obtained at lower rates. For more info, and more vets: www.baacs.org or 304-728-8330.

Parenting help: The Eastern Panhandle Relatives as Parents Program invites grandparents or other relatives raising a child to take part in monthly support group meetings. The Berkeley County meeting is held the third Friday of the month from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Berkeley County Boys and Girls Club. The Jefferson County meetings are held the fourth Friday of the month from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Jefferson County Boys and Girls Club.

Audubon camp: Youngsters in the Eastern Panhandle and Washington County, Md., may apply for the Potomac Valley Audubon Society’s summer youth camp scholarship program through Friday. Each year, the program helps send deserving area youngsters to summer camps that emphasize conservation and the environment. Applicants may choose among eight camps that range from the Society’s local day camps to sleepaway camps up to 200 miles away. For details, go to www.potomacaudubon.org or contact Kathryn Henry at 304-876-6681 or dhenry@myexcel.com.

Poetry sought: Poets have until 5 p.m. Friday to submit works that may be displayed during the Potomac Valley Audubon Society’s spring-themed Wildflower Festival. Poems may be dropped off at Four Seasons Books, 116 W. German St, in Shepherdstown, emailed to 4seasons@citilink.net or mailed to Poetry Walk, c/o PVAS, P.O. Box 578, Shepherdstown, WV 25443. The Wildflower Festival will happen April 14 at the Audubon Society’s Yankauer Nature Preserve, north of Shepherdstown. For more information, call the Audubon Society at 304-676-3397 or send an email to pvas-mail@aol.com.

Top pie: If you know someone whose pies can’t be beat, the West Virginia State Fair wants to hear from you by Friday. Anyone may nominate a friend, family member or neighbor at www.statefairofwv.com or by sending your name, address and phone number along with the nominee’s name, address, county and phone number to State Fair of West Virginia, P.O. Drawer 986, Lewisburg, WV 24901. The baker from each county who gets the most votes online will be invited to the fair’s bakeoff on Aug. 11. This year’s fair happens Aug. 10 to 18 in Lewsburg.

Blood drives: Donors may give blood every 56 days and the next opportunity to give blood in the Panhandle comes from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday at Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races. For details, go to www.redcrossblood.org.

AARP Meeting: The April meeting of Jefferson County AARP Chapter #799 will be held on Thursday, April 12 in the fellowship hall of Asbury United Methodist Church. The board of directors will hold their meeting at 10:30 a.m. and the meeting and program for members and guests will follow at 11 a.m. The featured program will be a square dancing demonstration by the chapter-sponsored square dancers’ group. A light luncheon will be served afterwards. Members are reminded that those who have not yet paid their 2012 dues should do so at this meeting. Members are requested to also pay for the annual chapter banquet to be held on Thursday, May 10. Members not attending the April meeting, who are planning to attend the banquet in May, should call Isabelle Ebersole 304-725-1279 to make their reservation by May 7.

Basketball signup: Boys and girls ages 4 to 18 must sign up by April 13 to take part in the Ranson Parks and Recreation and Jefferson County Parks and Recreation’s basketball league. The cost is $60 per child, with a discount for multiple youngsters from the same household. Register online at www.jcprc.org. For more information, call 304-728-3207.

Book presentation: Local young adult author Malcolm Ater will speak about his book Tyler’s Mountain Magic on Saturday, April 14 at 2 pm at St. Andrew’s Mountain Community Center to celebrate the dedication of the Community Center’s Children’s Library. Tyler’s Mountain Magic was selected as the Best Book Length Story of 2011 by the West Virginia Writers, Inc., and was recently selected as a 2012 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award winner for sports. An open house will run from 1 – 4 p.m., with the dedication at 1:30 p.m. The program is sponsored, in part, by a grant from AHA, The Arts and Humanities Alliance of Jefferson County.

Friends of Scouting Dinner: The Mannahoac District, Boy Scouts of America will host its 2012 Friends of Scouting Dinner for Jefferson County on Saturday, April 14 at 7 p.m. at St. James Catholic Church in Charles Town. The highlight of the dinner will be honoring John Sherwood as Scouting’s Distinguished Citizen. For more information on the FOS Dinner, contact the Shenandoah Area Council at 540-662-2551 or by email at sacbsa@sac-bsa.org or visit www.sac-bsa.org.

River cleanup: Volunteers are asked to come out from 9 a.m. to noon April 14 to clean up the shoreline of the Potomac River. The cleanup, to be held rain or shine, is being organized by the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park and River and Trail Outfitters, BTI Whitewater and River. Trash bags will be provided, but volunteers should be prepared to get dirty. Long pants and work gloves are suggested attire. For details, email Samantha_Zurbuch@nps.gov or call 304-535-5017.

Help for “Coach Mike”: There’s still time to buy tickets to a cash bonanza to benefit Mike Grant, the assistant Washington High football coach who has been fighting cancer since late 2011. The April 14 fundraiser, to be held from 6 to 11 p.m. at the Ranson Civic Center, will offer $6,500 in cash prizes, including a grand prize of $2,500. Also planned: a silent auction, a mini cornhole tournament, a DJ and other fun. Each $50 ticket includes dinner for two and one chance for the cash drawing. Because the event will include gambling and beer sales, it is not kid-friendly. To buy tickets or drop off items for the silent auction, stop by Studio M, 132 W. Washington St., Charles Town; Jefferson Asphalt, 9390 Middleway Pike, Charles Town; or the Spirit of Jefferson, 210 N. George St., Charles Town. Direct questions to Ronda Lehman at 304-261-8070.

Swing your partner: Square dancing is for anyone and a four-week class starting April 17 will cover the basics of modern square dancing so that anyone can begin dancing within minutes. Classes will be held each Tuesday in February from starting at 7 p.m. and lasting up to 90 minutes. Cost is just $5 for all four classes (or $1.25 per class) to be held at North Middle School in Martinsburg. To register, contact Terry or Loria Headlee at taheadlee@gmail.com or 304-676-8826 or 304-676-8411 prior to April 15.

Ms. Wheelchair West Virginia: Applications are now being accepted for the next Ms. Wheelchair West Virginia. The winner will represent W. Virginia in July, competing against other state representatives, for the national title of Ms. Wheelchair USA. The Ms. Wheelchair USA program is dedicated to celebrating the abilities and successful accomplishments of women with disabilities. To qualify, contestants must be women, ages 18 and older by July 30, 2012. Contestants must utilize a wheelchair as their main source of mobility however; this program does not exclude women who may be able to utilize their legs. Contestants must be residents or students in West Virginia for at least two months, may be married, single, or divorced. Contestants may have children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, or no children. The competition fee is $250. Contestants may pay the fee themselves, get donations from family and friends, or obtain sponsorships from area groups or businesses. Deadline to enter is April 22, 2012. Interested contestants can request an Official State Representative Application Package by visiting the website at www.MsWheelchairUSA.org or by calling the Ms. Wheelchair USA office at 330-612-5242.

Spaghetti fundraiser: Martinsburg High’s Band Boosters will hold its third-annual Jazz/Spaghetti Night April 21 from 5 to 9 p.m. at the high school at 701 S. Queen St., Martinsburg. The night will include a silent auction, a regular auction, the spaghetti dinner, live jazz from students and more. For details, call 304-707-1812.

Celebrating Earth Day: Mark your calendar for April 28 and the fourth annual Panhandle Earth Day Celebration at Morgan’s Grove Park on the corner of Kearneysville Pike and Morgan Grove Road just outside of Shepherdstown. The family-friendly event, happening from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., is free to those who walk or bicycle to the park or $10 per car. The fun includes art, crafts, kids’ activities, demonstrations from environmental and conservation groups, vendors, a farmers market and more. Musicians performing will include Paul Pfau Trio, Acoustic Burgoo, Zion Hearts, Bob Keel & Chelsea McBee and Todd C. Walker. To donate time or money toward the event, call 304-702-2620. More information is available a www.pedc.earthvibeproductions.com.

Foster care fundraiser: The annual “Walk With Me … for Youth In Foster Care” starts at 1:30 p.m. May 13 at Morgan’s Grove Park in Shepherdstown. For more on the walk, which raises awareness and funding for foster care programming, visitwww.walkwithmewv.com or call 866-call-mwv.

Come to Zumba: The Burke Street Promise Neighborhood Initiative will hold a Zumbathon Charity Event on April 14, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the gymnasium of the Boys and Girls Club on the corner of West John and Queen streets. The suggested entry fee is $5. Children 12 and under are free. All money raised will be used to pay for summer camp/program scholarships for children who live in the Burke Street School attendance area. For more information contact Sara Koontz at 304-263-0603 ext.27.

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