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Around Town

The Loudoun Office of the Virginia Cooperative Extension will hold an open house Tuesday, Feb. 4, from 4-7 p.m., at 30 Catoctin Circle, Leesburg. Community volunteers will be recognized and program information offered about topics such as agriculture, natural resources, family and consumer sciences and 4-H Youth. Door prizes and light refreshments will be available. Call 703-777-0373 or visit www.ext.vt.edu.

The Loudoun Abused Women's Shelter (LAWS) will offer a 30-hour volunteer training session beginning Wednesday, Jan. 22 in support of staff who help victims of family violence or rape. Call 703-777-6552 for information or to sign up.

Auditions will be held for The Sterling Playmakers' production of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" on Friday, Jan. 24, from 7 to 9:30 p.m., and Saturday, Jan. 25, from 1 to 4 p.m., at the Sterling Community Center, 120 Enterprise St. Those auditioning should be prepared for cold readings from the script. Roles are open for males and females, ages 17-70, and one role for a girl age 10-12. Production staff is also sought. New talent and volunteers are welcome on or backstage. Show dates are March 28, 29, 30 and April 4, 5 and 6. For further information, call the Playmakers' Hotline at 703-437-6117, or visit www.sterlingplaymakers.com.

Franklin Park Performing & Visual Arts Center is seeking submissions for the 2003 Youth Art Show, which opens on Sunday, Feb. 2 at Round Hill Center, 20 High St., Round Hill. Deadline for submissions is Jan. 24. All types of artwork are accepted with entry fees $1 for each piece. Opening day, Feb. 2, will feature a reception at 2 p.m. Art work will be on display through Feb. 14 at the Round Hill Center. Call 540-338-7973, for more information and entry forms.

The Board of Directors of the Piedmont Community Foundation (PCF) announced their 2002 year-end grant recipients. Recipient organizations were Community Holiday Coalition, Middleburg Community Center, Ashburn Library Advisory Board and the Very Special Arts, Loudoun County.

The Piedmont Community Foundation serves Loudoun, Fauquier and the surrounding region. PCF manages contributions from individual donors that are then combined and invested in identified need in the community.

The Main Street Loudoun (MSL) program was officially launched Thursday, Jan. 9 with the meeting of the Main Street Loudoun Partnership. MSL is a countywide program that helps volunteers implement economic revitalization and historic preservation efforts within their communities. The main objective of the program is to "help Loudoun’s communities preserve their sense of place while enhancing their economic vitality." The program is modeled after the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Main Street Program.

Martha Mason Semmes is the new Main Street Loudoun Coordinator. A new MSL Web site can be found at www.mainstreetloudoun.org.

MSL Partnership meetings will be held the second Thursday of every month and are open to the public. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact the Department of Economic Development at 703-777-0426.

Pre-sale tickets for the CAPS Alumni versus Metro Firefighters charity game, set for March 1, at 4 p.m. at the Ashburn Ice House, are available. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for children. All of the money raised will go toward to the Burned Children's Charity. Call Brent Schnupp Fairfax County Fire and Rescue at 7034039325

The Loudoun Hospital Center, 44045 Riverside Parkway, Leesburg, announced that, with the opening of the new state-of-the-art Birthing Inn on Jan. 11, they will award a college scholarship of $2,002 to the last baby born in the existing birthing facility and $2,003 to the first baby born in the new Birthing Inn. For information on Loudoun Hospital Center, visit www.loudounhospital.org, or call 703-771-2922.

New county recycling requirements and Leadership Loudoun are the topics of a new edition of "Inside Loudoun County" airing through the month of January. The 30-minute cable television program can be seen Mondays and Fridays at 7 and 9 p.m. on Adelphia's Government Access Channel 2.

Randy Reed of the Office of Solid Waste Management discusses new recycling requirements that went into effect countywide Jan. 1, and the impact on county residents.

Discussing the Leadership Loudoun and Discover Loudoun programs is Robin Geiger, the county's community relations manager from the Office of Public Information.

The Area Agency of Aging will provide free tax preparation assistance for people ages 55 and older, individuals with low incomes and individuals with disabilities, Feb. 10-April 10. The five locations in Loudoun County offering help include the Board of Supervisors' Satellite Office in Sterling, the Leesburg Area Agency on Aging Office, the Purcellville Library, South Riding Town Hall and the Senior Center at Cascades Marketplace in Sterling. For more information, call 703-777-0257.

Nine arts organizations were recently awarded grant monies from the Loudoun Art Council's ArtShare program. Recipients of this year's awards are Master Singers of

Virginia, Loudoun Academy of the Arts, Loudoun Symphony, Growing

Stage, Loudoun Ballet, Neale Concert Series, Blue Ridge Thunder

Cloggers, Loudoun Chorale, and Loudoun Community Band. A total of $12,000 was granted to these organizations. To receive a grant, organizations must "demonstrate strong artistic quality, noteworthy accomplishments, and sound management

practices." Grant monies were provided by a local private foundation and the Rendezvous Gallery in Leesburg which held a benefit in the fall. For more information, contact the Council at 703-777-7838.

The Citizens Advisory Committee for Loudoun County’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Mobility Master Plan will meet on Monday, Jan. 27, from 6-9 p.m., at the Loudoun County Government Building, 1 Harrison St., S.E., Leesburg.

Following the adoption of the Loudoun County Revised Comprehensive Plan by the Board of Supervisors in 2001, a bicycle and pedestrian plan was declared a priority in pursuing the county’s goal of creating a network of bikeways and walkways connecting citizens to parks, schools, jobs, shopping areas and rural open space. The committee is working on a draft plan to present to the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors. Call 703-777-0246. Visit www.loudoun.gov/compplan/bikeped.htm.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) announces the 2003 Loudoun MADD Poster/Essay Contest theme as "Be a Hero-Not a Zero!! Don't Drink and Drive." The entry must communicate, but not necessarily state, the theme. Posters will be evaluated according to attractiveness, use of color and expression. Essays will be judged by their emotional appeal, and correct spelling and grammar. Black and white photograph and video PSA entries will be evaluated for clarity and visual impact.

The "Design a Poster" category is divided into grades 1-3, 4-5, 6-8, and 9-12. The "Write an Essay" category is divided into grades 4-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Both the "Produce a PSA Video" and "Take a Black and White Photo" categories are evaluated within grade divisions 6-8 and 9-12.

The contest is open to all public, private and home-schooled Loudoun County students. The entry deadline is Feb. 28. Questions can be sent to, and entry forms downloaded from www.maddloudounva.org, or call Susan Cleveland at 703-771-8127. Entries can be mailed to MADD Loudoun County, P.O. Box 4252, Leesburg, VA 20170. MADD awarded $3,000 in savings bonds in 2002. Winners will be announced at the MADD award ceremony in April.