Send announcements to The Loudoun Connection, 7913 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102, e-mail to or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is Friday, two weeks before the event. Photos/artwork encouraged. For more information, call Jennifer Lesinski at 703-917-6454.

This free listing is reserved for activities and events that are open to the public at no or minimal cost.

Students from Stone Bridge High School Future Business Leaders of America Chapter (FBLA) will host the fourth annual Warm-a-Life coat drive to benefit the Community Holiday Coalition. Bring a coat and vote. On Election Day, community members can bring items to drop off in the containers located in the school lobby. Community Holiday Coalition supplies coats and blankets for underprivileged families that are trying to keep warm this fall and winter.

Many of the students plan to use the student holidays Nov. 7 and 8 to collect coats in their neighborhood. Stone Bridge High School FBLA students are collecting coats and blankets, beginning Nov. 1-14. Contact David Palanzi, adviser, at 703-779-8900.

The Loudoun Museum is assembling photos and images to illustrate its pictorial history book of Loudoun County, "The Lure of Loudoun: Centuries of Change in VirginiaÕs Emerald County" for the countyÕs 250th anniversary in 2007. This book will cover the history of Loudoun County from its geographical beginnings to the fastest growing county in the United States.

The bookÕs historical content will be based on Dr. Charles PolandÕs "Frontier to Suburbia: Loudoun County Virginia, One of AmericaÕs Fastest Growing Counties" and will include more than 300 black and white and color photographs. The museum is searching for rare and never before seen photographs from families and businesses of Loudoun County. After a book signing by Poland, the museum invites you to bring your historic and contemporary photos of LoudounÕs people, places and events to the museum Saturday, Nov. 5, from 1:30-4 p.m, 16 Loudoun St., S.W., Leesburg. E-mail or call 703-777-7427.

Beginning Nov. 5, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and leaders of the National Capital Area Council will take to the neighborhoods of Loudoun County in support of Scouting for Food. The mission of the service project is for Scouts to collect food items that will be given to families requiring assistance within their local communities. This year, the Scouts will deliver empty grocery bags to neighborhood homes and collect food Saturday, Nov. 12. In Loudoun County, Scouts collect food on behalf of the Community Holiday Coalition, LINK Inc., and Messiah's Market.

At both the Community Holiday Coalition and LINK, the donated food is repackaged within a week for distribution to their clients. This year, Boy Scout Troops 163 and 711 are receiving and sorting all the food that is donated by residents in western Loudoun County.

The Community Holiday Coalition's "Neighbors Helping

Neighbors" program is gearing up for the 10th annual Thanksgiving and December Holiday Stores. The Thanksgiving and Christmas stores are expecting to assist more than 1,000 Loudoun families in need, including more than 2,000 children. This year's program will once again be held at the Vintage Park Office Plaza in Sterling, off of Route 28 and Route 606 (Old Ox Road).

The Thanksgiving store will collect donations of food, personal and household baskets and gently-used, clean

coats Nov. 13-15 and distribution to families will be Nov. 15-17. A change this year will be the distribution of personal and household baskets during the Thanksgiving program.

There are also numerous collection sites throughout the county that will be collecting items for the holiday stores. A complete list of sites is available on the coalition's Web site,

Volunteers can call 703-737-8367 to sign up at one or both of the holiday stores. In December more than 2,500 filled stockings for children and filled gift bags for seniors and special adults will be distributed. The coalition provides the empty stockings and bags, but needs help in getting them filled. Call 703-737-8062.

Families are determined eligible by income and can find

applications at Loudoun County Social Services, Loudoun Interfaith Relief and the Good Shepherd Thrift Store. For more information about the program or about how to become a volunteer or donor, call the Holiday Hotline at 703-771-5718 or visit

The Senior Center at Cascades Marketplace, 21060 Whitfield Place, Sterling, is sponsoring a Adopt-a-Soldier program through Nov. 30. Donate items for a care package or donate $7 for the cost of mailing a package. Some of the items needed include prepaid phone cards, paperback books, magazines, crossword puzzles, socks, Q-tips, foot powder, sun block, individual packs/cans of hard candy, crackers, chips. Baked goods must be sealed and packed in a separate box. 703-430-2397.

Help make wishes come true this holiday season by sending holiday cards to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Mid-Atlantic, a nonprofit organization that fulfills the wishes of area children fighting life-threatening medical conditions. A portion of the card purchase is tax deductible and there is no minimum order requirement. These special cards can also be printed with a name or logo if desired. Orders must be received prior to Dec. 14. Call 301-962-9474. To view a sample card, visit

The Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Mid-Atlantic Inc. is a nonprofit organization that fulfills the wishes of area children fighting life-threatening medical conditions. Founded in 1983, the foundation has fulfilled the wishes of more than 4,800 children from Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland and Delaware.

The UPS Store located at 44050 Ashburn Shopping Plaza, Ashburn Village, through Dec. 23, will be offering customers the opportunity to purchase Toys for Tots donation cards for $1, with all proceeds going to local Marine Toys for Tots efforts. In addition, limited-edition replicas of the UPS Store/Toys for Tots No. 88 Ford race car will be available for $9.95, with a portion of the proceeds also benefiting the toy campaign. Unwrapped, new toys will also be accepted. Visit

First Night Leesburg is a family-focused celebration of the arts held in downtown historic Leesburg on New Year's Eve, which will be Saturday, Dec. 31 this year. The event is once again sponsored by the Bluemont Concert Series in cooperation with the Town of Leesburg, the County of Loudoun and a host of Loudoun businesses and civic organizations.

This is a call to artists and performers and performing groups who would like to be considered to be part of First Night Leesburg. The entertainment committee is interested in hearing from artists and performers from Loudoun County and particularly from local schools.

Artists and performers interested in performing at the 2005 First Night Leesburg Celebration should contact: Entertainment Committee, First Night Leesburg, P.O. Box 203, Leesburg VA 20178; call 703-777-6306 or e-mail

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team In Training (TNT) program (TNT) hosts events year round, including full- and half-marathons Ñ run or walk, cycling or triathlons. TNT's National Capital Area Chapter is recruiting participants for the upcoming spring season of events which includes the St. Anthony's and Gulf Coast triathlons Ñ swim, bike, and run Half Ironman Ñ in Florida; the Country Music marathon and half marathon in Tennessee; and the Adidas Vancouver International marathon in Canada.

The team will consist of people of all age ranges, fitness and experience levels Ñ the TNT training program provides the coaching and support needed to make sure everyone crosses the finish line.

In exchange, participants work to raise funds for blood cancer research. These four events alone should raise somewhere in the neighborhood of $700,000. The local TNT chapter will raise more than $3 million this year. And, 75 percent of every dollar spent goes towards cancer research and other programs to advance the Society's mission of curing leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease, and myeloma. For more information about TNT or upcoming spring events and how to get involved, information meetings are being held in the Washington, D.C., area during the month of November, call the National Capital Area Chapter at 703-960-1100, or visit

Loudoun Volunteer Services seeks nominations for Student Volunteer of the Month. Loudoun students will be recognized for their volunteer efforts during the 2004-2005 school year. Nominate students, or groups of students, elementary-12th grade, who volunteer their time in a variety of ways in their schools, churches, and towns. A one-page narrative may be sent to the Loudoun Volunteer Services Board at or to 1 Harrison St., S.E., P.O. Box 7000, Leesburg, VA 20177.

The one-page narrative should include the student's name, address, telephone number, school and a description, including length of service of the exemplary volunteer efforts of the student. Contact information for the person nominating the student should also be included.

Volunteers will be featured in the Loudoun Volunteer Services Newsletter and on the Loudoun County Government Web site. Contact Lisa Rose, volunteer coordinator, at


Loudoun MADD is selling the red MADD CHOOSE COURAGE community awareness wristbands for $1, which can be mailed for an additional $.50 each. The wristbands can be purchased by sending a check to Loudoun MADD at P.O. Box 4252, Leesburg, VA 20177, with the number of wristbands for purchase. Visit the Loudoun MADD Web site at to see a picture of the wristbands. For questions send an e-mail to

Residents and businesses using the Loudoun County Recycling Drop-off Centers are reminded that the recycling centers accept only mixed bottles, cans, and paper. Specifically, items that are accepted at the recycling centers include clear- and colored-glass bottles and jars; aluminum and steel cans; plastic bottles and jugs Ñ beverage, detergent and squeeze bottles and jugs only; newspapers; magazines; phone books; catalogs; junk mail; office paper; cardboard; and paperboard such as cereal boxes.

Items that are not accepted at the centers include plastic bags; plastic flower pots; Styrofoam; or any other type of plastic that is not specifically a bottle or jug; window glass; plate-glass; porcelain; wood; yard waste; furniture; needles; nails; construction materials; electronics; hazardous chemicals or chemical containers; and motor oil containers.

If an item is not listed on the sign as acceptable for recycling, do not deposit it in the recycling bin, and instead call the Loudoun County Office of Solid Waste Management at 703-777-0187. For more information visit

The Loudoun Arts Council invites nonprofit arts organizations to apply for ArtShare, the councilÕs annual regranting program, which distributes funds to nonprofit arts groups as well as provides these organizations with grant writing experience.

To be eligible for a grant, organizations must demonstrate strong artistic quality and sound management practices. Grant applicants must have completed at least one season of programs and be members of the Loudoun Arts Council.

Again this year, the Arts Council is offering a prereview process to assist organizations with preparing their grant applications.

Key dates for this yearÕs ArtShare program are:

Nov. 23: Final applications are due by 5 p.m.

Dec. 19: Applicants are notified of recipients

Dec. 30: Checks are mailed to grant recipients

Contact the Loudoun Arts council for application forms and information about general policies and eligibility requirements at 703-777-7838 or

The Loudoun Arts Council is a nonprofit organization that promotes the development of artistic expression throughout Loudoun County by supporting visual, performing and literary artists and arts organization.

Young writers in Loudoun County are being encouraged to use their imaginations, put pen to paper and create a story for the Community Voice Media LLC's Young Voices of Loudoun County short-story contest.

All students from grades kindergarten-12th grade, including Loudoun County Public Schools, private schools or home-schooled children are eligible to enter the contest. There will be cash prizes awarded for first, second and third place in the categories of elementary-, middle- and high-school levels. All participating students will receive a publisherÕs award in recognition of their achievement.

Contest submissions must be postmarked no later than Dec. 10. Entries can be mailed to Community Voice Media LLC, P.O. Box 564, Round Hill, VA 20142-0564. Submission guidelines are available on the Community Voice Media Web site or by sending a postage paid envelope along with the request to the address above.