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Community Notes

<i>Send announcements to The Herndon Connection, 7913 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102, e-mail to herndon@connectionnewspapers.com or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is two weeks before the event. Photos/artwork encouraged. Call Jean Card at 703-917-6437, with questions. This free listing is reserved for activities and events that are open to the public at no or minimal cost.</i>

The 11th session of the Herndon Citizen Police Academy will begin Aug. 31. Classes will be held every Wednesday from Aug. 31-Nov. 16, from 7-9 p.m. The academy is held at the Herndon Police Station. Participants will be given instruction in community policing, investigations, traffic enforcement, police K-9, forensics and evidence collection, and other topics. There will also be tours of the Adult Detention Center, a trip to the firing range and ride-along opportunities. The class is limited to 20 students. Participants must be 18 years of age or older. Participants need not live in the Town of Herndon, however town residents receive first consideration to attend. Contact Senior Police Officer Dexter Morgan at 703-435-6881, Ext. 294 or at dexter.morgan@herndon-va.gov.

The Epilepsy Foundation of the Chesapeake Region is sponsoring the following Support Groups for Adults diagnosed with Seizure Disorders and Caregivers. Free. Call 703-425-6660.

Reston Epilepsy Group meets the second and fourth Friday of each month, from 7-8:30 p.m., at Herndon High School, Entrance 5, Room 123, 700 Bennett St., Herndon. Northern Virginia Epilepsy Group (Support Group for Adults diagnosed with Seizure Disorders and Caregivers) meets every Wednesday, from 7-8 p.m., at Falls Church High School, Room 100, 7521 Jaguar Trail, Falls Church.

The Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross is seeking platelet donors. Apheresis technology available at many area Red Cross blood Donor Centers allows some donors to give only platelets, while remaining blood components are returned to the donor before the process is complete. The donation takes slightly longer than a standard whole blood donation. For questions regarding eligibility, as well as a listing of local Donor Centers, which are equipped with apheresis technology, call 1-800-272-2123 or visit

www.my-redcross.org.

The WomenÕs Center of Vienna will be offering a number of classes and workshops designed to help navigate the different aspects of separation and divorce, starting in April and continuing through August at various locations in Vienna, Fairfax and McLean.

Some of the assorted programs topics include Divorce Through Mediation, Divorce Without Litigation, Dollars and Sense of Divorce, Financial Planning for Separation and Divorce, Helping Your Child Cope With Separation and Divorce, Legal Aspects of Child Support and Understanding Your Right To Marital Assets and others. Visit the WomenÕs Center Web site at www.thewomenscenter.org, or call 703-281-2657.

The Town of HerndonÕs Cultivating Community Initiative is seeking nominations for the Yard of the Month competition. Residents can nominate their own yard or a neighborÕs yard, but the yard must be within the Town of Herndon. Only front yards will be judged. Winners will be selected for June, July and October. They will receive a $100 gift certificate to Meadows Farms and recognition in the media and by Town Council. Each month, both a single-family house and a townhouse will be awarded Yard of the Month. To obtain nomination forms, go to the townÕs Web site at www.herndon-va.gov and click on ÒWhatÕs NewÓ then ÒYard of the Month Awards.Ó Contact Robin Runser at 703-435-6800 Ext. 2010 or by e-mail at robin.runser@herndon-va.gov.

Football Officials Needed. No experience necessary. The Northern Virginia Football Officials Association (NVFOA) is seeking new members for its 2005 training class who can become on-field game officials and electronic clock operators for games at the youth, middle-school and high-school levels throughout the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. They are the sole supplier of football officials to all high schools in the Virginia counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Prince William, Loudoun, and Fauquier. They also supply officials to numerous private schools in Northern Virginia, the District of Columbia and Maryland. Men and women who have reached the age of 18 and who have a desire to be a part of the scholastic game are eligible. Information and application forms are available at the Web site www.nvfoa.com or contact the commissioner, Dennis Hall, by phone at 703-532-0000 or e-mail commissioner@nvfoa.com.

The International Center for Language Studies (ICLS), which has been selected to run an ESL (English as Second Language) program for 25 high-school students from France this summer, needs families to house them during each of its two three-week sessions: July 10-30 and July 31-Aug. 20.

In the sixth year of this program, ICLS will provide an all-encompassing cultural experience to complement the classroom curriculum. The weekday morning classes Ñ designed to help the students acquire speaking and listening skills in American English Ñ will be followed by afternoon field trips that present examples of history and culture in the Washington, D.C., area. Possible destinations include the White House, the U.S. Capitol, the Air & Space Museum and many other historical and cultural sites in and around the city.

ICLS is now beginning to recruit families interested in hosting a student. Families will be expected to provide room and board, to help facilitate the studentÕs use of public transportation to travel to and from ICLS and to include them in weekend activities that will enhance their American experience. The students will have paid for the various incidental costs; a stipend will be paid to each host family.

Contact ICLS at 202-639-8800.

The WomenÕs Center is launching its new online job listing service, the CenterÕs latest addition to its roster of career services. The site will be accessible by visiting www.thewomenscenter.org and going to the JobsOnline link.

User-friendly, JobsOnline will feature a full range of jobs from local businesses, including part-time positions.

Employers can list a full or part-time position for only $40 for two weeks or $65 for one calendar month and $50 for each month thereafter. Listings can be seen by over 200 visitors per day who view the WomenÕs Center Web site.

For information about JobsOnline or other career services at The WomenÕs Center, contact Carla Walsh, Coordinator of Career Services, at 703-281-2657, extension 271 or by e-mail cwalsh@thewomenscenter.org.

For information about other WomenÕs Center programs, contact the WomenÕs Center at 703-281-2657.

The League of Women Voters of the Fairfax Area recently said farewell to their outgoing president Olga Hernandez, who served from 2000-2005, and welcomed Sherry Zachry as the new president for 2005-2007. Zachry's term began July 1. The board of directors are working on candidate forums for the fall elections as well as planning for the September League Unit meetings throughout Fairfax County and in Prince William County to study the very current "Hot Topic" of Redistricting. Watch for further information about times and places for meetings. For more information visit the Web site at www.lwv-Fairfax.org or call the office at 703-658-9150.

The Bargain Loft is a local thrift store located at 336 Victory Drive in Herndon. It is run by an all volunteer staff, and is clean and air conditioned. All the money made by the Bargain Loft goes to help Herndon/Reston FISH, which helps people with emergency needs such as money for rent, utilities or medicines.

Bargain Loft is open Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. There are two shifts, mornings from 10 a.m.-noon and afternoons from noon-2 p.m.

The Loft particularly needs people on Saturdays and can always use teenagers who want to acquire some Community Service time. Call Mr. Stringer at 703-437-0600.

The Fairfax County Park Authority will begin improvements to a portion of the Difficult Run Stream Valley Park in May. This project continues efforts to complete the Cross County Trail, which will eventually travel from the Occoquan River in the south to Great Falls in the north. The work will include improving a section of the Cross County Trail and stream, and bank stabilization. Site improvements will require closing an existing parking lot that is used for trail access within Difficult Run Stream. Valley Park. The parking lot is located on the south side of Georgetown Pike across from Great Falls Park. The parking lot will be closed during construction. Construction completion is anticipated in August. Funding for this project is provided through the park bond program. Contact Project Manager Jim Duncan at 703-324-8747.

The 2005 Miss Virginia American Coed Scholarship State Pageant is looking for contestants for the pageant taking place Aug. 11-14, in Richmond. This is an "All Natural" scholarship pageant for girls ages 3-22, which emphasizes academic and volunteerism and natural look. The pageant does not allow makeup on contestants under the age of 13. For an application e-mail contact@msvaamericancoed.com or call 804-305-4239. Visit our Web site www.msvaamericancoed.com.

The Aspect Foundation, a high-school exchange student program, has been awarded grants for the Future Leaders Exchange (FLEX) Program and the Partnership for Learning Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Program.

The goal of FLEX and YES is to provide an opportunity for international high-school students from Eurasia, the Middle East and Asia to experience life in a democratic society and learn about volunteerism and free enterprise.

Foreign exchange students who participate in the two programs come to Northern Virginia to live with host families, attend school and engage in activities to learn about American society and values. They, in turn, educate Americans about their own countries and cultures.

The FLEX program is funded by Congress under the Freedom Support Act and administered by the Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. FLEX participants are high school students, ages 15-18 who come from the countries of the former Soviet Union: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.

The Department of StateÕs Bureau of Educational and

Cultural Affairs also fund the YES program. The program provides full scholarships for a year or semester of living and studying in the U.S. to a select group of young people, ages 15-18 from Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Sudan, Tunisia, Syria and Yemen.

The Aspect Foundation is also looking to find families to host regular exchange students for the upcoming school year in the United States. These students come from Western Europe, South and Central America and Asia.

Contact Robert Rawls at 703-409-9776 cell, 703-433-0362 or by e-mail at coyote1437@yahoo.com.

A group called Promote Herndon has published the second edition of the townÕs brochure, ItÕs All in the Heart of Herndon Ñ A 2005 Guide. As before, the guide includes the calendar of events, information about downtown attractions, arts and entertainment, as well as parks and recreation. New to this yearÕs guide are the Town of Herndon and area maps, which were designed to show the locations of major events, attractions and recreation in town. The 2005 Guide is available at the VisitorÕs Center, 717 Lynn St., 703-HERNDON or by calling Robin Runser, public information officer, Town of Herndon at 703-435-6800, Ext. 2010.

Kids Serve Too, a program of Virginia-based Salute Our Services, a nonprofit to support deployed soldiers and their families, is one of 10 programs from around the nation to receive the Newman Award, presented at the Pentagon on June 20. The Newman Award is given to organizations involved in supporting deployed service members or the families of deployed service members and is based on the organizationÕs impact to the respective communities, creativity and innovation. Along with a grant, KS2 will receive a certificate of recognition from Paul Newman.

The mission of Kids Serve Too is to honor, support and thank military children by fostering awareness and appreciation about the sacrifices and unique challenges they face; provide financial grants to allow military children the opportunity to maintain their extracurricular activities during deployments Ñ a time when many military families are faced with a loss of income; build support systems in school districts, not located on military installations, by adding deployment issues to the curriculum and building partnerships between military families and the communities in which they live; and to provide informational tools and Web-based resources for military families and their communities by providing a central location on the Web site for all activities and programs that benefit children of a deployed parent.

Kids Serve Too, staffed by military spouses, exists to assure our men and women in uniform that their children are being taken care of while they are away serving our country.

Judges for the 2005 competition included Mary Jo Myers, spouse of chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff; Bill Lee, vice president, business development, NewmanÕs Own; Tammy Fisher, spouse of chairman, Fisher House Foundation.

To learn more about Kids Serve Too or apply for a grant, visit www.kids2.org or www.saluteourservices.org.

Professionals who want to become teachers can quickly obtain a license in critically needed subject areas of math and the sciences through the Virginia Community College Career Switcher Program. The Manassas Campus of Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC) is the local regional center for the program.

Designed for working adults with bachelorÕs degrees, the Career Switcher Program allows future teachers to keep their current jobs while completing the course. The programÕs instructional portion takes 16 weeks with much of the work done online. During this time, particpants gain teaching experience by spending a minimum of 30 hours working with students in a classroom.

Graduates are issued a one-year license, making them eligible for employment with any Virginia school district. In the first year, new teachers receive support from trained mentors, as well as further instruction through professional development seminars. After the first year, the teacher is eligible for a regular five-year license.

Applications for the fall session will be accepted until Aug. 8. Additional information and entrance requirements are available online at www.vccs.edu/workforce/switchers/ or by contacting regional advisor Kathleen Ludlow at 703-257-6586.

The American Red Cross has issued an urgent national appeal for blood donations as national blood inventory levels continue to decline following the July Fourth holiday. As a result, the Greater Chesapeake and Potomac (GC&P) Blood Services Region is strongly encouraging local blood donors to schedule an appointment to donate blood.

Donors must be in generally good health, at least 17 years old, weigh no less than 110 pounds; have not received a tattoo within the past year; have not donated whole blood within the past 56 days.

Eligible blood donors can call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE to schedule a donation appointment. All blood types, as well as blood platelets, are needed. Platelet donors can call 1-800-272-2123 to schedule an appointment. Any groups interested in scheduling a blood drive or obtaining further information is asked to call 1-800-787-9282, Ext. 4925.

More information about local blood drives, donor centers, and eligibility requirements can be found at www.my-redcross.org.