Thursday 21

GRIEF SUPPORT GROUPS, for those suffering the loss of a spouse, family member or friend, sponsored by the Howard County Office on Aging, 12:30-2 p.m. Thursdays, Florence Bain Senior Center, 5470 Ruth Keeton Way, Columbia; 10:30 a.m.-noon Wednesdays, Colonial Landing Apartments Community Room, 6391 Rowenberry Dr., Elkridge. Free; registration required. 410-313-7466.

HALLOWEEN PARTY, for teenagers and their younger siblings, includes a disc jockey, door prizes, arts and crafts, and pizza, sponsored by the Columbia Association Teen Center, 4-6 p.m., Columbia Teen Center, the Barn, Oakland Mills Village Center, 5800 Robert Oliver Pl., Columbia. Free. 410-992-3726.

DISCUSSIONS OF YOUTH ISSUES, for ages 9-13, facilitated by U.S. Army retired officer and substitute high school teacher Gorham Black III, discusses "Being and Playing Fair," today; "Responsibility," Oct. 28; "School, Study and Future," Nov. 4, 4:30-5:30 p.m., Savage Branch Library, Gorman and Knights Bridge roads, Laurel. Free; registration required. 410-880-5975.

BREAST CANCER SUPPORT GROUP, 7 p.m., the third Thursday of each month, Howard County General Hospital, Wellness Center, Columbia Medical Center, Suite L-9, 11055 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia. Free. 410-730-5372.

Friday 22

ELLICOTT CITY BRIDGE PROGRAM, play and improve skills, bring a bag lunch, coffee and tea available, sponsored by the Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Fridays, Kiwanis-Wallas Recreation Center, 10481 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free. 410-313-7279.

COLUMBIA MASTER DANCE CLASS, Aurora Dance Company founder and director Dawn Barnes teaches African dance, Barnes previously led the dance program at Howard Community College, 1:30-3 p.m., 10901 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia. $10; Howard Community College students, free; registration required. 410-772-4940.

LAUREL NIGHT HIKE, for all ages, search for sights and sounds of owls, bats and other animals, 6-7:30 p.m. Friday, National Wildlife Visitor Center; Sunday, North Tract, Patuxent Research Refuge, North Tract, Route 198 between Baltimore-Washington Parkway and Route 32, Laurel. Free; registration required. 301-497-5887.

Saturday 23

COLUMBIA WATERFOWL SEARCH, for ages 7 and older, identify waterfowl, search for loons and grebes, migrant hawks and eagles in the Centennial Lake area; bring binoculars and field guide, a spotting scope available for close-up views, sponsored by the Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks and the Howard County Bird Club, 9-11 a.m., Centennial Park south, 1000 Route 108, Ellicott City. $6; registration required. 410-313-7275 or www.co.ho.md.us/RAP/rap_homepage.htm.

BEREAVEMENT SUPPORT GROUP, for those coping with the loss of a loved one, separate groups for children and adolescents and their parents, led by professional facilitators, sponsored by the Steven Daniel Jeffreys Foundation's Tears and Smiles program for children, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Mount Hebron House, Mount Hebron Presbyterian Church, 2351 Calvin Cir., Ellicott City. Sliding fee scale, $25 and less; registration required. 410-730-3310.

SCIENCE AND MATH PROGRAM, for girls ages 11-14, Operation SMART, experiments and hands-on activities for maintaining ease in science and math and relevant technology, sponsored by the Columbia Association Teen Center, 10-11:30 a.m. Saturdays, through Nov. 13, the Barn, Oakland Mills Village Center, 5800 Robert Oliver Pl., Columbia. 410-992-3726.

LAUREL NATURE PROGRAM, for ages 8-10, learn about animal migration through games and activities, 2-3 p.m., Patuxent Research Refuge, National Wildlife Visitor Center, off Powder Mill Road, between Baltimore-Washington Parkway and Route 197, Laurel. Free; registration required. 301-497-5887.

ELLICOTT CITY INDIA PROGRAM, for ages 5 and older, celebrate Diwali, the Hindu Festival of Truth and Light, stories, folklore and a dance performance by India Delight Inc., 2 p.m., Miller Branch Library, 9421 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free. 410-313-1955.

BASKET BINGO, 20 games with baskets as prizes, plus door prizes and two jackpot games; food available for purchase, to benefit the Ladies Auxiliary of the Savage Volunteer Fire Co. Inc.; doors open, 5 p.m.; games start, 7 p.m., 8925 Lincoln St., Savage. $17; advance, $15. 301-725-6409.

COLUMBIA LIBRARY FRIGHT NIGHT, for ages 11-14, games, movies and food, wear your costume, 6 p.m.-midnight, East Columbia Branch Library, 6600 Cradlerock Way. Free; registration required. 410-313-7704.

GLENWOOD ASTROLOGICAL PROGRAM, for ages 7 and older, learn facts and legends about the moon, telescopes available to view craters, mountains, valleys and other lunar features, if weather permits, sponsored by the Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks and members of the Howard Astronomical League, 6-10 p.m., Glenwood Park, 14675 Carrs Mill Rd., Glenwood. $8; registration required. 410-313-7275 or www.co.ho.md.us/RAP/rap_homepage.htm.

Monday 25

COLUMBIA COMMUNITY BOOK TALK, discussion of "Stories From Asia," facilitated by Howard County Library staff members, books available to borrow, 10 a.m., Florence Bain Senior Center, 5470 Ruth Keeton Way, Columbia. Free. 410-313-7860.

LAUREL CHILDREN'S STORY TIMES, stories, songs and other activities about ghosts; costumes welcome; for age 2 accompanied by an adult and age 3, 10:15 a.m. and 11 a.m. Monday; for ages 4-6, 10:15 a.m. Tuesday; for ages 2 accompanied by an adult and ages 3-6, 10:15 a.m. and 7 p.m. Oct. 28; for ages 2 accompanied by an adult and ages 3-6, 10:15 a.m. Oct. 29, Savage Branch Library, Gorman and Knights Bridge roads, Laurel. Free; registration required. 410-880-5978.

COLUMBIA MORNING BOOK DISCUSSION, "The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down," by Anne Fadiman, books available to borrow, sponsored by the Morning Books With Coffee group, 10:30 a.m., East Columbia Branch Library, 6600 Cradlerock Way. Free; registration required. 410-313-7700.

GRIEF SUPPORT GROUP, learn what to expect after the death of a loved one, sponsored by Hospice of Howard County, 7-8 p.m., 5537 Twin Knolls Rd., Columbia. Free; registration required. 410-730-5072.

COLUMBIA BATTERED WOMEN SUPPORT GROUP, a confidential drop-in program for those troubled by a current or past abusive relationship, 7 -8:30 p.m. Mondays; a program for Hispanic women also available, focusing on furthering education and forming a supportive community, English and Spanish spoken, 7-8:30 p.m. Mondays, Domestic Violence Center of Howard County, 8950 Route 108, Suite 116, Columbia. Free. 410-997-0304.

ELKRIDGE FORENSIC SCIENCE DISCUSSION, for ages 11 and older, a state medical examiner discusses what it's like being a medical examiner, the effect of DNA testing and more, 7:30-8:45 p.m., Elkridge Branch Library, 6540 Washington Blvd., Elkridge. Free; registration required. 410-313-5077.

COLUMBIA BOOK DISCUSSION, for ages 9-11, "Crispin: The Cross of Lead," by Avi, sponsored by the We're Bookin' book group, 7:30 p.m., Howard County Central Library, 10375 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia. Free; registration required. 410-313-7880.

Tuesday 26

BOOK DISCUSSION, for students ages 11 and older, "A Long Way From Chicago: A Novel in Stories," by Richard Peck, sponsored by the After School Book Club, 2-4 p.m., Savage Branch Library, Gorman and Knights Bridge roads, Laurel. Free; registration required. 410-880-5980.

COLUMBIA LIBRARY STORY TIME, for ages 6 and older, scary stories, riddles and other activities, 4:15 p.m., Howard County Central Library, 10375 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia. Free; registration required. 410-313-7880.

SENIORS JAZZ PROGRAM, vocalist Rae Bernard, bring dessert and sing along, beverages provided, sponsored by Harmony of Sol Inc., Howard County Arts Council and Howard County government, 7-8:30 p.m., East Columbia 50-Plus Center, 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia. Free; registration required. 410-313-7680.

COLUMBIA INTERNET CLASS, learn about advanced Internet-searching techniques, 7 p.m., East Columbia Branch Library, 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia. Free; registration required. 410-313-7700.

Wednesday 27

ELLICOTT CITY KNITTING GROUP, a drop-in program, knit and crochet afghans, blankets, baby clothing 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.

YOUTH CHESS CLUB, for players ages 9-17 of all skill levels and with some knowledge of basic chess, 4-5:30 p.m., Savage Branch Library, Gorman and Knights Bridge roads, Laurel. Free. 410-880-5980.

COLUMBIA BOOK AND FILM DISCUSSION, "The Natural," a 1984 baseball movie starring Robert Redford, and a discussion of it and the Bernard Malamud book that inspired it, bring a beverage, popcorn provided, 6-9 p.m., East Columbia Branch Library, 6600 Cradlerock Way. Free; registration required. 410-313-7700.

CHORUS MEMBER SEARCH, seeking talented female singers in all voice parts for barbershop-style performances, sponsored by the Harbor City Music Company, a chorus of Sweet Adelines International; rehearsals, 7:15 p.m. Wednesdays, Chesapeake Center for the Creative Arts, 194 Hammonds Lane, Brooklyn Park. Free; registration required. 800-856-9868 or www.harborcitymusiccompany.org.

CATONSVILLE MOTHERS SUPPORT GROUP, for mothers during their active parenting years, 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.

ELLICOTT CITY AUTHOR TALK, author Mark Croatti discusses his book "Ye Haunted History of Ellicott City," 7-8:30 p.m., Miller Branch Library, 9421 Frederick Rd., Ellicott City. Free. 410-313-1950.

Thursday 28

COLUMBIA HERB TALK, for ages 8 and older, a master gardener discusses the secrets of herbs, 4:30 p.m., Howard County Central Library, 10375 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia. Free; registration required. 410-313-7880.

-- Compiled by LINDA JAMES

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