Thursday 7

BOYS SOCIALIZATION WORKSHOPS, for boys ages 9-13, facilitated by U.S. Army retired officer and substitute high school teacher Gorham Black III, "Grooming," 4:30-5:30 p.m. today; "Associating With Others," Oct. 14; "Being and Playing Fair," Oct. 21; "Responsibility," Oct. 28; "School, Study and Future," Nov. 4, Savage Branch Library, Gorman and Knights Bridge roads, Laurel. Free; preregistration required. 410-880-5975.

LIBRARY "ELECTION DAY" STORY TIMES, for children ages 6-9, stories and activities about the election process, 4:30 p.m. today, Elkridge Branch Library, 6540 Washington Blvd., Elkridge, 410-313-5085; 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Howard County Central Library, 10375 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia. 410-313-7880; Free; preregistration required.

COLUMBIA MASK-MAKING CLASS, for adults, learn how to make a life mask -- a cast from the face of a living person -- out of plaster gauze, with emphasis on psychological and cultural aspects of masks, sponsored by the Columbia Association Art Center, 7-9:30 p.m. Thursdays, through Nov. 11, 6100 Foreland Garth. $110; Columbia residents, $100; preregistration required. 410-730-0075.

LIBRARY CHESS CLUBS, for players ages 9-17 of all levels, some basic knowledge required, sponsored by the Howard County Library Chess Club, 7-8:30 p.m. today and Oct. 21, Glenwood Branch Library, 2350 Route 97 (Roxbury Mills Road), Cooksville, 410-313-5577; 5-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Miller Branch Library, 9421 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City, 410-313-1950; 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Elkridge Branch Library, 6540 Washington Blvd., Elkridge, 410-313-5085. Free.

Friday 8

SENIORS CRAFT PROGRAM, learn how to make greeting cards, no experience necessary, easy cartooning and watercolor techniques taught by a local artist and teacher, 10 a.m.-noon Fridays, through Nov. 12, East Columbia 50-Plus Center, 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia. $54; preregistration required. 410-313-7680.

COLUMBIA DRUMMING CLASS, for ages 18 and older, learn basic hand-drumming, no previous experience or musical training required, 7-8:30 p.m. Fridays, through Nov. 12, Columbia Association Art Center, 6100 Foreland Garth. $80; Columbia residents, $75; preregistration required. 410-730-0075.

Saturday 9

WOODSTOCK BIRDING, beginners welcome, search for fall migrating birds in fields at Mount Pleasant Farm; wear boots; sponsored by the Howard County Bird Club, 8 a.m., meet at shed on the grounds of the Howard County Conservancy, 10520 Old Frederick Rd., Woodstock. Free. 410-461-3361 or www.howardbirds.org.

LAUREL BIRDING DISCUSSION AND WALK, for ages 16 and older, learn how to identify birds and their habitats, and about birding equipment, 9-11 a.m. Saturday and 8-10 a.m. Sunday, Patuxent Research Refuge, National Wildlife Visitor Center, off Powder Mill Road, between Baltimore-Washington Parkway and Route 197, Laurel. Free; preregistration required. 301-497-5887.

ELLICOTT CITY RODEO STORY TIME, for children ages 2-4 accompanied by an adult, music and movement activities, 11:30 a.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Tuesday and 10:30 a.m. Oct. 18, Miller Branch Library, 9421 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free; preregistration required. 410-313-1955.

Sunday 10

LAUREL BATS PROGRAM, for ages 5-7, learn about bats in an interactive program, 1-2 p.m., Patuxent Research Refuge, North Tract, Route 198, between Baltimore-Washington Parkway and Route 32, Laurel. Free; preregistration required. 301-497-5887.

Monday 11

COLUMBIA SWING DANCE CLASS, an introductory class, no partner necessary, sponsored by Kings Contrivance Community Association, 6:15-7:15 p.m., Amherst House, Kings Contrivance Village Center, 7251 Eden Brook Dr. Free; preregistration required. 410-381-9600.

BATTERED WOMEN SUPPORT GROUP, drop-in program, 7 p.m. Mondays, Domestic Violence Center of Howard County, 8950 Route 108, Suite 116, Columbia. Free. 410-997-0304.

SENIORS BRIDGE AND MAHJONGG GAMES, 7 p.m., Mondays and Wednesdays, East Columbia 50-Plus Center, 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia. Free. 410-313-7680.

Tuesday 12

ELKRIDGE BOOK DISCUSSION, "Honest Doubt: A Kate Fansler Novel," by Amanda Cross; bring a sandwich, drinks and dessert provided, sponsored by the Mystery Book Club, noon, Elkridge Branch Library, 6540 Washington Blvd.. Free; preregistration required. 410-313-5077.

SAVAGE LIBRARY CHECKERS PROGRAM, for ages 11 and older, for all levels, learn how to play checkers and brush up skills, sponsored by the library's Checkers Club, 4-5 p.m., Savage Branch Library, Gorman and Knights Bridge roads, Laurel. Free; preregistration required. 410-880-5975.

DIVORCE SUPPORT GROUP, ongoing, for fathers experiencing separation or divorce, sponsored by the National Family Resiliency Center, 7-8:30 p.m. Tuesdays, 2000 Century Plaza, Suite 121, Columbia. Sliding fee based on income level, $10-$50; major health insurance plans accepted; preregistration required. 410-740-9553.

CLARKSVILLE MEETING, for ages 14-21, discussion of plans for upcoming trip to Great Britain for the summer of 2005, sponsored by Maryland Search and Rescue, Boy Scouts of America Venture Crew 737, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and Oct. 26, Clarksville Volunteer Fire Department, 5000 Signal Bell Lane, Clarksville. 443-535-8701.

ELKRIDGE INTERNET SAFETY PROGRAM, for children ages 11 and older accompanied by an adult, an investigator with the Maryland State Police Technical Investigative Section will discuss safety issues of meeting people online and how to protect family members from online predators, 7:30 p.m., Elkridge Branch Library, 6540 Washington Blvd.. Free; preregistration required. 410-313-5077.

Wednesday 13

SENIORS HALLOWEEN PARTIES, for ages 55 and older, refreshments, entertainment and prizes, wear a costume or hat, sponsored by the Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Wednesday, Elkridge Senior Center, 6540 Washington Blvd., Elkridge; 11 a.m.-noon Oct. 19, Western Howard County Senior Center, 2398 Route 97, Cooksville; noon-1 p.m. Oct. 23, East Columbia 50-Plus Center, 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia. $2; preregistration required. 410-313-7279.

LAUREL COMMUNITY BOOK TALK, discussion will focus on travel safety, facilitated by Howard County Library staff, books will be available for borrowing, 11 a.m., Savage Senior Center, 9525 Durness Lane, Laurel. Free; preregistration required. 410-880-5975.

ELLICOTT CITY KNITTING GROUP, a drop-in program, knit and crochet afghans, blankets, baby clothes and more for local charities, hospitals and senior centers, sponsored by the Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month, Kiwanis-Wallas Recreation Center, 10481 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free. 410-313-7279.

ELLICOTT CITY SENIOR BOOK CLUB, discussion of "Growing Up," by Russell Baker, 1 p.m., Ellicott City Senior Center, 9401 Frederick Rd. Free; preregistration required. 410-313-1950.

DIVORCE SUPPORT GROUP, for women experiencing separation or divorce, sponsored by the National Family Resiliency Center, 4:30-6:45 p.m. Wednesdays, through Dec. 15, 2000 Century Plaza, Suite 121, Columbia. Sliding fee based on income level, $10-$50; major health insurance plans accepted; preregistration required. 410-740-9553.

COLUMBIA BREAST HEALTH SEMINAR, "Breast Health Care in Howard County: Moving Toward the Future," physicians and specialists discuss breast health care and services available in the county; emphasis on breast cancer prevention and intervention, and ongoing research and technology; plus dinner, sponsored by Howard County General Hospital, 6:30-9:30 p.m., Sheraton Columbia Hotel, 10207 Wincopin Cir. Free; preregistration required. 410-740-7601.

ELLICOTT CITY GENEALOGY PROGRAM, "Count Your Family -- Ahnentafel," presented by Howard County Genealogical Society Vice President Miles Davis, information about organizing family names in an Ahnentafel, or "ancestor table", 7 p.m., Ellicott City Senior Center, behind Miller Branch Library, 9401 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free; preregistration required. 410-465-8456.

CATONSVILLE MOTHERS SUPPORT GROUP, discussion of "Help! Are We Becoming Our Mothers?," includes a chance to win a stroller, sponsored by Mothers and More, Southwest Baltimore Chapter, 7 p.m. the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month, Immanuel United Church of Christ, 1905 Edmondson Ave., Catonsville. Admission, free. 410-455-0498.

AUTISTIC CHILDREN'S PARENTS SUPPORT, for parents of children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, sponsored by Children and Adults With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder of Greater Baltimore, 7-8:30 p.m. the second Wednesday of each month, Loyola Graduate Center, Room 362, 8890 McGaw Rd., Columbia. Free. www.chadd-mc.org.

Thursday 14

ELLICOTT CITY CAFETERIA STORY TIME, for ages 6 and older, stories and other activities as part of National School Lunch Week, 4:30 and 7 p.m., Miller Branch Library, 9421 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free; preregistration required. 410-313-1955.

COLUMBIA WELLNESS PROGRAM, receive a computerized body analysis that provides a lean body mass-to-fat ratio, an estimated basal metabolism, exercise guidelines, calories burned while exercising and more, sponsored by Howard County General Hospital, 6-8:30 p.m., Wellness Center, Columbia Medical Center, Suite L-9, 11055 Little Patuxent Pkwy. $15; six-month follow-up analysis, $10; preregistration required. 410-740-7601.

-- Compiled by LINDA JAMES

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