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Bulletin Board Oct. 29-Nov. 4

To have a notice listed in the Bulletin, e-mail gazette@connectionnewspapers.com. Call Rebecca Halik at 703-917-6407 with questions.

Applications for the following awards are now being accepted: The Women’s Opportunity Awards program aids women seeking to improve their economic status by gaining additional skills, training and education. The women may use the award to offset any costs associated with their efforts to attain higher education including books, childcare and transportation.

The Violet Richardson Award recognizes and honors young women, between the ages of 14 to 17, who make the community and world a better place. The program offers a cash grant to award recipients and the organizations for which they volunteer.

Applications are available by contacting Sylvia Winterling, svlwint@aol.com. All completed applications are due by January 10, 2009.

The City of Alexandria invites residents to participate in a community meeting on the City’s Capital Improvement Program on Thursday, November 6, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Lee Center Exhibit Hall, 1108 Jefferson Street. This meeting is an opportunity for residents to provide input on the community's priorities for future capital projects and to make suggestions for closing a previously identified $61 million funding gap. To attend, please RSVP by e-mailing dawn.webster@alexandriava.gov or calling 703.838.4780. Residents are encouraged to review background information about the CIP budget at www.alexandriava.gov/budget. Written comments on the CIP may be e-mailed to CIPcomments@alexandriava.gov. Please submit all written comments no later than November 30.

Runners in Alexandria will once again pound the pavement for the 33rd running of the Alexandria Turkey Trot, held each Thanksgiving morning in Alexandria’s Del Ray community. This year’s five-mile road race will be held on Thursday, Nov. 27 at 10 a.m. at the Cora Kelly Elementary School at the intersection of West Reed and Commonwealth Avenues. The entry fee -- with two cans of food – is $15 for individuals ages 13-21 years and $20 for those age 22 and over. Children 12 and under can participate for $10 at the door and two cans of food. The food will be donated to ALIVE, Inc. Register online before Monday, November 24th and save $5! Visit www.visitdelray.com/turkeytrot. Alexandria Turkey Trot T-shirts can be purchased online for $10 each, for all ages, until Nov. 24.

Nominations are sought for the HIV/AIDS Lifetime Achievement Award, Prevention/ Education Award, and the Client Services Award. The Second Annual World AIDS Day Service Excellence Awards Program is designed to acknowledge and honor the extraordinary efforts of peer-nominated HIV/AIDS providers and advocates in Alexandria, Virginia. The deadline for Nominations is Nov. 12. for further request a Nomination Packet at nadineeads@comcast.net

The third annual Special Needs Trusts series meeting will take place on Wednesday Nov. 12 from 7:30-9:30 p.m. at the The Nannie J. Lee Recreation Center, 1108 Jefferson St. Learn about setting up a Trust for your mentally ill family member, and ensuring that it is adequately handled after you are gone. A panel of experts will address issues like, should you or another family member be the Trustee and deal with the issues? If not, who else? If it is someone outside the family how do you make sure things are done properly?

The Alexandria Commission on Persons with Disabilities (ACPD) is currently seeking input from City residents through a Needs Assessment survey. If you are a person with a disability, a family member of a person with a disability, or a service provider to persons with disabilities, please take the Needs Assessment survey today at alexandriava.gov/acpdsurvey. To request additional information, a reasonable accommodation, or an alternative format, e-mail mike.hatfield@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.3148, TTY 711.

The City of Alexandria planning commission is holding a public hearing on Thursday, November 6 at 7:30 p.m., at council chambers, 301 King St., City Hall. The Alexandria Planning Commission docket is subject to change. Planning and Zoning staff can provide information on changes that occur prior to the meeting. For more information, call 703-838-4666.

The Northern Virginia Conference for Women in Ministry will be held Oct. 31-Nov. 1 at the Hilton Hotel, 6550 Loisdale Road, Springfield. Hosted by Mount Pleasant Baptist Church of Alexandria. $40/person. Contact Minister Oliver S. Pilson at 703-912-5053 or visit www.godswomeninministry.org.

Every year the Alexandria Office on Women organizes a Holiday Party for children and their mothers, who have been recently served by our Domestic Violence Program. If you would like to participate in the Children's Holiday Party this year, we are asking that your donated gifts remain unwrapped. For the mothers' presents we are requesting gift certificates to area stores in denominations of $25.00. The Children's Party will be held on Thursday, Dec. 18. Donations accepted at the Office On Women, 421 King St., Suite 400, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., beginning Monday, Nov. 3. The deadline for having unwrapped gifts delivered or picked-up is Monday, Dec. 15 by 5 p.m. 703-838-4911.

On Sunday, November 9th, four leading talents in the innovative cocktail community will come together for “5 for $50,” a crafty cocktail affair to raise funds for the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, www.missingkids.com, at PX, located above Eamonn’s A Dublin Chipper in Old Town. Located nearby, the charity is near and dear to the hearts of both Thrasher and his business partners, Chef Cathal and Meshelle Armstrong, who are also parents of two young children, Eve and Eamonn. The evening’s event aims to raise awareness of the mission behind NCMEC:

Skilled alchemist Todd Thrasher has brought together the creative minds of his ‘friends in spirits’; Tad Carducci (Tippling Brothers), Eric Felten (Wall Street Journal spirits writer), Charlotte Voisey (Hendrick’s Brand Champion and mixologist for William Grant & Sons), Derek Brown (Komi, Cocktail Ambassador to New Orleans Cocktail Museum) and H. Joseph Ehrmann (Elixir bar in San Francisco) for an evening of cocktails and carryin’ on.

“5 for $50” begins on Sunday, November 9th, at 6 p.m. and concludes at 10 p.m. Entrance is through PX and the evening will take place on both the first and second floors. Eamonn’s A Dublin Chipper will be closed for this private affair. Five cocktails for $50 gets patrons in the door tasting specialty handcrafted concoctions along with enjoying the ‘cocktail magic show’ behind the bar. The show begins every 30 minutes when one of the savvy tastemakers takes the bar over at PX creating their cocktail for the evening.

As this is a fundraising benefit, all tip jar goodies will go directly to NCMEC.

Reservations for this special affair are very limited R.S.V.P to Host Clinton Terry at Clinton@restauranteve.com. Include in the Subject Line - ‘Swank Party.’

PX is located at 728 King Street. 703-299-8384, www.eamonnsdublinchipper.com.

The City of Alexandria is once again in search of a Colorado Blue Spruce, Leyland Cypress or other well-formed evergreen tree, approximately 25 to 35 feet tall, to serve as the City’s official 2008 Holiday Tree. The City will remove the tree from the donor’s property in mid-November and grind the stump at no cost. The tree will be decorated and displayed at Market Square (301 King Street) throughout the holiday season. Persons in the Washington metropolitan area who are interested in donating a tree should contact John Noelle, City Arborist, at 703-838-4999 or e-mail john.noelle@alexandriava.gov.

The Westminster-George Mason Tutoring Program seeks tutors to assist students with homework and other assignments at George Mason Elementary School at 2601 Cameron Mills Road on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 2:35-3:35 p.m. from October through May. Contact Kathy Hart at 703-706-4476 or khart@acps.k12.va.us to learn more.

The City of Alexandria anticipates a historic turnout of approximately 72,000 voters for the 2008 Presidential election. Alexandria election officials and City departments are doing their part to prepare, but lines of voters may be long. Voting at the polls may be difficult for people with special needs, caregivers of family members who are ill, and residents who commute outside the city.

The City’s Office of Voter Registration and Elections advises residents in these circumstances to consider voting by absentee ballot. Many Alexandria voters are eligible, but relatively few take advantage of this option. There are several qualifying circumstances. For example:

You commute and work for 11 of the 13 hours the polls are open. (Take into account those days when traffic is heavy or the weather is bad and it takes longer than usual to get to and from work.)

You are a caretaker for a confined family member.

You are unable to go to the polls in person on Election Day because of an illness or disability.

You will be absent from Alexandria on Election Day because of work, or school, or vacation.

To learn more about these, and other circumstances in which absentee voting is an appropriate option, visit www.alexandriavoter.org and click on “Absentee Voting,” or call 703.838.4050.

You can vote absentee in person at the Alexandria Voter Registration Office, 132 N. Royal St., or by mail. In-person absentee voting hours are Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The office will also be open for absentee voting on each Saturday in October and on Saturday, November 1 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The deadline for voting absentee in person is Saturday, November 1, at 5p.m.

If you wish to absentee vote by mail, download an application from www.alexandriavoter.org, or contact the Voter Registration Office to get an application mailed to you. The application must be received by the Voter Registration Office at 5p.m. on that day. Absentee ballots by mail must be received by the Voter Registration Office on or before November 4, at 7p.m. For more information, call Tom Parkins, Registrar of Voters, at 703.838.4050.

The City of Alexandria is offering Confident City Bicycling classes to help residents learn how to ride safely and skillfully through city traffic.

* Saturday, Nov. 1, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Cora Kelly Recreation Center, 25 West Reed Ave. (November 1 class includes an optional one-hour on-bike session.)

The classes, which are free to Alexandria residents, are part of a collaborative effort between the City and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association. To register, visit www.waba.org. For more information, contact Yon Lambert, Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator, at 703.519.3400, ext. 183, or visit alexandriava.gov/localmotion.

Wright to Read is a program of the Frank and Betty Wright Foundation and is administered by The Campagna Center in Alexandria. The program trains and places tutors with students in the Alexandria City Public Schools who are reading at least one year below grade level. Needed are volunteers to participate in one of our programs. Contact Heather Miles, the program assistant director, if interested in helping children through volunteering. Phone 703-549-0111 ext. 134 or e-mail hmiles@campagnacenter.org.

The Special Education Parent Resource Center holds a weekly Support Group for Parents of Children in Special Education from 10 a.m. to noon every Thursday in the Parent Resource Center at Jefferson-Houston Elementary School, 1501 Cameron St. (Ring the bell at door No. 4).

Each meeting includes coffee and bagels, and an opportunity to share stories, support, information and problem-solving ideas related to special education issues, school and family life. The group is open to parents who have children of all ages with special needs. Infants and toddlers are welcome. Parents are welcome to drop in whenever they can.

For more information, please contact Anne Lipnick at 703-706-4552 (office) or 571-274-2866 (work cell), or email alipnick@acps.k12.va.us.

CrisisLink's 24/7/365 hotline for the Washington Metro Region is currently recruiting volunteers. Come to a training session on Oct. 18. Go to www.crisislink.org, e-mail volunteer@crisislink.org, or call 703-527-6016 to learn more.

The Alexandria Workshop of Ikebana International meets at the Hollin Hall Senior Citizen Center, 1500 Shenandoah Road, at 9:30 a.m. on the first Wednesday of each month from September through June except December and January. Ikebana is the Japanese art of floral arrangement. The group makes Ikebana floral arrangements, studies the history of the art and learns new techniques. New members are welcome. For more information call Julie Cimino at 202-544-5331.

The Sexual Assault Response and Awareness (SARA) program is looking for compassionate listeners, both English speaking and bilingual, who would be comfortable talking to sexual assault survivors and their families. The next SARA training is scheduled to begin in early October and meets two evenings a week from 6:30-9:30 p.m. and on two Saturday mornings. For more information or to register for the SARA training, contact Stacey C. McCullough at 703-838-5030 or HYPERLINK "mailto:stacey.mccullough@alexandriava.gov"stacey.mccullough@alexandriava.gov.

The Alexandria Community Services Board is in need of volunteers to serve in the following positions:

* Friends of the Alexandria Mental Health Center Board Members: Friends is seeking new members who will take an active role in fund-raising, building relationships with the business community and helping coordinate Friends community events. The Board meets one Wednesday evening every other month with occasional subcommittee meetings and additional time required for leading or assisting with projects.

* Mural Artists: Alexandria Vocational Services is seeking a mural artist or group of artists to paint a portion of a 30’x 60’ concrete wall in a warehouse that houses the Sheltered Workshop Program. Program participants complete projects such as labeling, envelope stuffing and film recycling. Some funds are available for supplies.* Representative Payees: Payees receive Social Security checks and pay bills for persons with an intellectual disability or mental illness. A separate bank account is opened with automatic deposit and there are few monthly transactions. The duties require two hours per month, per account. For more information about these volunteer opportunities, contact Jennifer Cordero at jennifer.cohen-cordero@alexandriava.gov or 703-838-4455, x 161.

Nonprofit organizations and other grantseekers in Alexandria looking for funding sources now have access to a valuable new collection of resources through Alexandria Library. The Foundation Center’s core collection includes The Foundation Directory Online and Foundation Grants to Individuals Online. All four Alexandria Library branches have access to the two databases through their catalog computers. The complete Cooperating Collection of print and electronic resources is held at the Barrett Library, located at 717 Queen St. For more information visit visit www.alexandria.lib.va.us .

The City of Alexandria has partnered with Alexandria City Public Schools to obtain a grant for $70,000 to retrofit approximately 40 school buses with clean air technology that reduces pollutants emitted by diesel engine school buses. For more information about the Retrofit Grant Program, please contact Erica Bannerman, Department of Transportation and Environmental Services, at 703-838-4334 or David Rose, Alexandria City Public Schools, at 703-461-4169.

The Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria (SAPCA) invites youth (6th – 12th grades) and adults who live in the City of Alexandria or work with Alexandria youth to complete a short online survey that asks for perceptions and opinions about youth substance abuse in our community. Incentives are provided for youth participants, and adult survey participants have access to recent statistics on youth substance abuse in Alexandria. Community members are asked to complete one of the seven questionnaires, which are all available at alexandriava.gov/sapcasurvey and can be completed in about 10-15 minutes.

The 4Paws Rescue Team is allowed to keep foster cats at the Petco in Alexandria to increase their chances of finding a loving home. Petco volunteers are asked to commit to one evening or morning each week to care for 2-4 cats. Currently are in dire need of Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning volunteers (until noon), but volunteers for other shifts are encouraged to apply as well. 
If interested, contact info@fourpaws.org or by phone at 703-715-6369.