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.

In celebration and recognition of its accomplishments, the Loudoun Human Service Network will hold its Fourth Annual Human Service Professional Awards Ceremony, Friday, Oct. 28, 12-2 p.m., in the Aspen Room, 906 Trailview Blvd., Leesburg. Drinks will be provided. Potluck lunch, bring a dish. RSVP by Oct. 22 to Catherine Motivans at 703-737-8977.

In honor of National Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog month, Loudoun County Animal Shelter will be offering free spay or neuter surgery for every dog adopted from the shelter in the month of October.

All dogs adopted from the shelter in the month of October will have an adoption fee of $30. The shelter will pay for the cost of spay or neuter surgery for any dogs that are in need of this service. This represents a $40 savings for male dogs and a $45 savings for female dogs.

The shelter is also looking at additional incentives to encourage dog adoptions during the month of October.

For more information on Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog Month, contact the Animal Shelter at 703-777-0406 or via e-mail at

Throughout October, Safeway stores throughout the mid-Atlantic region will raise funds to help fight breast cancer. Employees at all 141 stores will host cookouts, hold carnivals, sell campaign chocolate bars and ask customers to add a dollar to their orders to fund research and prevention of this disease.

In the Baltimore/Washington area, all funds raised by this initiative will be donated to MedStar Health, to support breast cancer programs at all MedStar Health hospitals, the Visiting Nurse Association and MedStar Research Institute.

Free cab rides will be available throughout eastern Loudoun County, Oct. 29-31, from 8 p.m.-4 a.m. each night. The SoberRide program, offered by the Washington Regional Alcohol Program, allows residents 21 and older, celebrating with alcohol, to receive a free cab ride, up to a $50 fare, by calling 1-800-200-TAXI or #TAXI for Cingular customers. The program is offered through Washington, D.C.; Arlington, Fairfax, eastern Loudoun and Prince William counties in Virginia and Montgomery and Prince George's counties in Maryland. Visit

Loudoun Volunteer Services is seeking students in grades fifth-12th who have engaged in a volunteer activity that occurred at least in part after Sept. 1, 2004, to apply for the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program, which is sponsored by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and recognizes students in grades 5-12 solely on the basis of their volunteer activities.

Loudoun Volunteer Services will select four students as local honorees. Of the four, one high-school student and one middle-level student will be selected for the state competition, with the other two students serving as runners-up. Each of the four will be recognized at a local awards ceremony. A state-level judging committee will select the top

youth volunteers in each state, with the top high-school and middle-level students each receiving a silver medallion, $1,000 and a trip to Washington D.C., where a national selection committee will select America's top 10 youth volunteers for 2006. Each national-level honoree will win an additional $5,000, a gold medallion, crystal trophy and a $5,000 grant from the Prudential foundation to a charitable

nonprofit organization of the student's choice.

For more information or to receive an application, contact

Loudoun Volunteer Services at 703-777-0113 or Applications may also be downloaded from The deadline to apply is Oct. 31.

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 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.

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