Thurmont to host Halloween in the Park
Thurmont's eight-year tradition, Halloween in the Park, is scheduled to take place at 6 p.m., Saturday, in Community Park.
The park will be closed to vehicle and foot traffic starting at 9 a.m. Friday so town staff and volunteers can set up props.
According to Commissioner Wayne Hooper, who is in charge of the event, the price of admission will be $2 plus one canned food item per person. Children five and younger may enter free. Half of the admission price will go to offset costs to the town and $1 will go to the Thurmont Food Bank. The event has historically relied on cash donations, but Hooper said the sluggish economy has prevented attendees from being as generous as they once were.
Part of the point of the event is to help out the food bank during the time of year when it needs the most assistance from community members, Hooper said. According to a press release from the food bank, 240 families are expected to need Christmas meals this year.
"There's a number of things for the kids to do and it's just something that the whole family can participate in," Hooper said. "For $2, where are you going to take the whole family?"
The event will feature a haunted hayride, a magician, a haunted puppet show and face painting by a local Girl Scout troop. There will also be a chance to win a $50 door prize. Refreshments will be provided. Some food will come from donations made by area grocery stores but volunteers will also use a local civic organization's kitchen to whip up Halloween-themed cookies and cakes, Hooper said.
The rain date for the event, which Hooper said has had to be used for the last five years, is Nov. 6.
National Fallen Firefighters
foundation earns grant
Earlier this month, U.S. Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett (R-Dist. 6) of Buckeystown announced that the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation in Emmitsburg had been awarded three federal grants that total $433,480.
According to a press release, the funds will be used to "conduct significant and proactive outreach to public safety agencies nationwide to improve awareness of and access to [Public Safety Officers Benefits Act] benefits."
"When tragedy strikes, family members and departments of injured and fallen firefighters are often overwhelmed with funeral arrangements and the paperwork involved in filing for federal, state and other benefits. The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation will apply its proven expertise and its successful networking and outreach to law enforcement, firefighter, and first responder agencies to access PSOB benefits in addition to providing other support services."
Myersville man graduates
Wassem Y. Juakiem of Myersville recently graduated from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) in Bethesda. He received a medical degree and was commissioned to the rank of captain, with a minimum seven-year active duty service commitment.
The university is a tuition-free institution which manages a graduate nursing school, a graduate school with doctor of philosophy and master's degree programs, and a medical school that prepares men and women to be outstanding health care practitioners, physicians and scientists for careers in the Army, Navy, Air Force and U.S. Public Health Service.
The medical school curriculum includes a concentration of preventive medicine, primary care, military medicine, and emergency medicine. The curriculum programs are related directly to force health protection, tropical diseases, disaster medicine, military and public health medical readiness and adaptation to extreme environments.
Juakiem is assigned to the U.S. Air Force, and is the son of Yousry H. Juakiem and Marie Therese Elias of Myersville.
plant trees to benefit
Boy Scouts of Troop 1070 in Walkersville helped the Carlisle Homeowners Association in the Highlands development of Frederick plant 50 native species trees on Saturday, which benefitted the scouts and the neighborhood, according to a parent volunteer.
Jack Lynch, an Eagle Scout and parent of a Boy Scout in the troop, helped arrange the partnership between the troop and the homeowners association due to his involvement in both.
About a dozen Scouts worked for eight hours, Lynch said. "It went very well."
"Given the HOA has a very limited budget and could normally only replace three to four trees per year, I suggested the volunteer effort with a donation [and] the troop agreed," Lynch said in an e-mail to The Gazette. "Hopefully it will become an annual event."
Lynch said the association will donate $1,000 to Troop 1070 in exchange for their work, which will help about 10 to 12 boys go to summer camp next year as well as pay for other activities. The association also provided a pizza lunch to the Scouts.
The goal of the tree planting is to "increase the urban canopy of the community, improving urban forest quality and helping to protect waterways."
Troop 1070 has done planting work in the Walkersville parks and watershed previously, Lynch said.
Send items for North County Notes to reporter Courtney Pomeroy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Call 301-846-2127 for more information.