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Community Notes

To have an item listed, mail to the Gazette-Packet, 1604 King St., Alexandria, VA 22314; fax to 703-917-0991 or e-mail to gazette@connectionnewspapers.com. Deadline is Friday at noon for the following week’s paper. Photos and artwork encouraged. If you have any questions, call Marguerite Rogers at 703-917-6407.

The George Washington Masonic National Memorial celebrated the 273rd birthday of its foremost freemason, George Washington, with an official wreath laying ceremony on Feb. 27 at the base of the 17-foot bronze statue of Washington in Memorial Hall. Guests and speakers at the wreath-laying ceremony included the William D. Euille, mayor of the City of Alexandria; Del Pepper, the vice mayor of Alexandria; Joseph S. Shumard, chairman of the George Washington Birthday Committee; James C. Rees, executive director of George Washington's Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens; W. Scott Stoner, new president of The George Washington Masonic National Memorial Association and the Grand Master of Masons from D.C., Maryland and Virginia. The Heroes of '76, National Sojourners, headquartered at Collingwood in Alexandria, presented the colors. Arnold F. Brown, Potentate of Kena Shrine Temple led the Pledge of Allegiance.

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EF Foundation for Foreign Study is seeking potential host families for the 2005-2006 school year in Alexandria, Arlington County and Southern Fairfax County. Host families are responsible for providing room, board and a caring environment for the students. The students range from 15 to 18 years old and will attend area high schools. Students are fully insured, speak English and will bring their own spending money. The are selected for the program based on their academic achievement, maturity and adaptability. Host families are eligible for a tax deduction and a $500 scholarship toward EF’s outbound study abroad program. For more information, contact the EF Foundation’s local representative Erica Christ at 571-322-0006 or call the EF Foundation’s headquarters in Boston at 1-888-44-SHARE. Visit www.effoundation.org.

The Alexandria Commission for the Arts is seeking proposals from artists to create up to five works of art to be given as the 2005 Alex Awards. This annual award program is geared to stimulate interest in the arts in the artistic, business, community and educational sectors. The Alex Award program recognizes Excellence in an Artistic Discipline, Excellence Service to the Arts, Outstanding Contributions to Arts Education and Innovative Partnerships between Businesses and the Arts. The 2005 Alex Awards will be presented at a city-wide event scheduled for May 20, at the Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center, 300 1 N. Beauregard St. The winners will receive a commissioned work of art from artists who work or live in Alexandria. All proposals must be submitted to the Alexandria Commission for the Arts’ office, 1108 Jefferson St., by the close of business day on March 21. To obtain a proposal form or for more information, call the Commission’s office at 703-838-6348 or e-mail alexandriacommissionforthearts@verizon.net.

The Carlyle House Historic Park achieved accreditation by the American Association of Museums. National recognition comes with AAM accreditation. The designation certifies that a museum operates according to standards set by the museum profession, manages its collections responsibly and provides quality service to the public. The team explored the finances, collections, exhibits and programs of this Northern Virginia Regional Park. Located at 121 N. Fairfax Street, the Carlyle House is open to the public Tuesdays-Saturdays from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and Sundays from noon-4:30 p.m. The Carlyle House is closed on Mondays. For more information about the museum, exhibits and events, call 703-549-2997 or http://www.carlylehouse.org. The American Association of Museums is the national service organization representing the American museum community.