Oct. 16, 2014
Harper's Choice Voice
The e-Newsletter for the Village of Harper's Choice

Keeping You Informed
This weekly e-newsletter serves as a recap of news and events we share with our community throughout the week via other social media channels. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter to receive more regular announcements and information from us.
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LAST CALL: The Big Thank You
Send a Special Thank You to Overseas Service Members
Thanksgiving is a treasured American tradition that provides an opportunity for us to spend special time with loved ones and give thanks for our blessings. For many of the men and women serving our country overseas, Thanksgiving can be a difficult time.

Harper's Choice is collecting letters to send overseas to honor and show appreciation to the men and women who are not able to spend Thanksgiving Day with their families.

Write your letter at Kahler Hall!

On October 17, you are invited to Kahler Hall between 10AM - 2PM to write your letter and help prepare the letters for shipment. Materials and supplies will be provided. Letters from all ages are encouraged.

The messages back from the soldiers who receive Thank You letters through  The Big Thank You are incredible. Here are just a handful of responses from a few of the men and women that have received a letter.

The Harper's Choice Community is proud to participate in this endeavor. Let's join together as a community and send our appreciation to our troops.

If you can't make it to our event on October 17, please note that we extended our deadline to receive letters at Kahler Hall to October 22. Just stop by  and leave it in our collection box!

Letter Guidelines


Each letter should be heartfelt, handwritten, original, and free of any political statements. The purpose of the letter is to express thanks to military personnel currently deployed outside the United States. We reserve the right to eliminate those messages that are political in nature and do not reflect a positive message in the spirit of Thanksgiving.

  • All letters must be on 8.5" x 11" paper or smaller
  • No  glue, tape, staples, cardboard, glitter or anything attached to the paper
  • No construction paper
  • Decorate using crayons, markers, pens or pencils
  • Use both sides if you like, but use one page per letter only
  • Do not send greeting cards or photographs
  • Feel free to include your mailing and email addresses
  • Individual letters should not be sealed in envelopes
  • Do not send anything except letters

Please contact Susan at 410-730-0770 for more information.   

Early Voting
October 23 - 30 at Select Polling Locations
Early voting for the November 4 General Election is October 23 - 30 at select polling locations. Visit the Howard County Board of Elections website to find early voting polling sites and to get deadlines for requesting absentee ballots.

In Howard County, we will elect a new County Executive and four members to the Board of Education. In the State of MD, we will elect a new Governor.

Whether you vote by absentee ballot, cast your ballot during the early voting period, or visit your polling location on November 4, we encourage you to exercise your right to vote.

Columbia Speaks, CA Listens
CA Wants to Hear from More of You!

Register now for "Columbia Speaks. CA Listens," which will be hosted by the Columbia Association Board of Directors on Saturday, October 18.


The community-input meeting will be held at the Wilde Lake Interfaith Center, which is located off Trumpeter Road across from Wilde Lake High School. It will be held from 9:30AM - noon. A social hour from 8:30AM - 9:30AM will precede the event.  


Pre-registration is encouraged


CA is seeking to hear from a diverse cross-section of the Columbia community regarding some specific issues that are important to the community. Facilitators will help moderate the meeting and guide discussions.


Child care will be provided at the meeting. Those seeking assistance with transportation should email Columbia.Speaks@ColumbiaAssociation.org. CA will also be providing methods for those who cannot attend in-person to still be able to participate electronically and to submit comments afterward. More information on this option will be posted at ColumbiaAssociation.org

Did You Know...
HoCo Has a Watershed Enhancement Grant? 
Howard County's Bureau of Environmental Services has posted the grant application for the 2015 Watershed Enhancement Grant.

The purpose of the grant is to encourage change in citizen and community behavior as they affect water quality in Howard County's lakes, rivers and streams through grass roots education and outreach activities. The grant is intended to:
  1. increase citizen awareness of and participation in water quality issues and projects;
  2. provide watershed education opportunities for Howard County residents
  3. implement pilot or model restoration projects that can lead to County-wide application; and
  4. encourage the formation of watershed groups.

The grant can also be viewed at the Howard County Storm Water Management Division web page.

The HoCo League of Women Voters Prepares Voter Guides?
The Howard County League of Women Voters has created a voter's guide for the upcoming General Election on November 4, 2014. In addition, they produced interviews of candidates for local, state, and federal races and recorded a variety of candidate forums.

The videos are available on their YouTube channel.

Printed Voter Guides are located in all branches of the Howard County Library System, each Village Association office throughout Columbia, and many other community centers throughout the county.

In addition, you can find it here in electronic format for your reading pleasure.

Covenant Corner
Tree Removals
According to the Village Covenants, residents of Harper's Choice may not remove a tree larger than 6 inches in diameter without the written approval of the Columbia Association and the Village Architectural Committee (AC). If you wish to remove a tree that meets this requirement, submit an application to the Village office. We will contact CA who will visit the property and make a recommendation to the AC. Most requests for removal are approved, provided the stump is removed or ground out and the area restored, unless the tree is located in a wooded portion of a lot. In some cases, the AC may require that a tree be replaced. Contact the covenant advisor with any questions at 410-730-0770 or via e-mail.


Not To Miss Events!
Discover Downtown Inaugural 5K and 1 Mile Fun Run: October 19
The Downtown Columbia Partnership hosts its inaugural Discover Downtown Running Event on October 19, 2014. This exciting new event winds through many iconic landmarks of Downtown Columbia, both old and new, including The Mall In Columbia, Symphony Woods, Merriweather Post Pavilion, The Rouse Building featuring the brand new Whole Foods, and the Downtown Columbia Lakefront.

Runners tackling the 5k will take off from the new Plaza at The Mall in Columbia at 9AM, followed by our Fun Run younglings. At the Finish Line, the parking area of the American City Building will be transformed into a taste of Downtown Columbia with entertainment and children's activities. Athletes will be treated to a post-race brunch.

Register online through Saturday, October 18, 2014. 


50+ Events
Columbia Senior Circle Special Meeting
Please join the Columbia Senior Circle at a special meeting on Tuesday, October 21 at 10:30AM for a presentation by Howard County Police Officer Andre Lingham on the issue of how seniors can protect themselves from fraud and scams.

The meeting will take place at Historic Oakland Manor, 5430 Vantage Point Road, Columbia.
The Columbia Senior Circle is an ongoing group sponsored by the Villages of Columbia that meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month. These informal gatherings are open to seniors throughout Columbia, for the purpose of discussing and sharing common interests and concerns. 

For more information, please contact Patricia Laidig, Village Manager for Columbia Town Center at 410-730-4744 or Kristin Shulder, Village Manager for Wilde Lake at 410-730-3978.

Prepare to Care
Are you currently caring for your aging parents (or know you will be soon)? On Thursday, November 20 from 6:30PM - 8PM, the Howard County Office on Aging will offer an educational presentation called Prepare to Care at The Hawthorn Center located at 6175 Sunny Spring, Columbia, MD 21044.

Learn how to assess needs, develop a care plan, and locate resources and programs for your aging family member.

You will also learn about aging in place and senior housing options.

This workshop is FREE; advance registration required.

Contact Joan Lancos at 410-730-7327 for more information.

Upcoming Meetings
Architectural Committee Meetings
Changes made to the exterior of homes in Harper's Choice require the approval of the Village Architectural Committee. The AC meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 7:30 PM to review applications. The deadline to submit applications for approval is two weeks prior to the next meeting date. Upcoming meetings are scheduled for:
10/28, 11/11, 11/25. 

Village Board Meetings
The next meeting of the Village Board is scheduled for November 11 at 7PM. Agendas and Meeting Minutes can be found on our website.

Stay Connected
Village Manager
Cathy Murphy
Facility Manager
Covenant Advisor

Community Outreach Coordinator

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5440 Old Tucker Row  Columbia, MD 21044  410-730-0770  events@harperschoice.org