Sign Language for Police

A group of Howard County police officers was scheduled this week to begin a new program in American Sign Language and deaf awareness skills, an inaugural effort to give county law enforcement officers better strategies in dealing with the deaf and hearing impaired.

The program, for 15 officers, is funded through a $23,667 grant that the Horizon Foundation awarded to the police department last year. Richard M. Krieg, president and chief executive of the Columbia-based Horizon Foundation, said the county is home to 12,000 deaf and hearing-impaired people, and police previously have had problems communicating with them.

The three day-long sessions will be conducted by Howard Community College's Division of Continuing Education and Workforce Development.

Dog Gala in Ellicott City

The Ellicott City Business Association will host "A Dog's Day in Ellicott City" on Saturday in the historic district; it will feature contests and pet adoptions.

Registration for the "Pet-Owner Dress Alike Contest" and the "Best Bandana Contest" will be held from 11 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Yuppy Puppy Pet Boutique, 8120 Main St., and the contests will begin at 1:30 p.m. in front of the Ellicott City B&O Railroad Station Museum. A $5 registration fee per dog will be donated to Howard County Animal Control, and each contestant will receive a treat from the Baltimore Dog Bakery.

Throughout the day, pet experts will be available to answer questions. Pets will be available to adopt through Pet Pals Inc. beginning at 2:30 p.m. For more information: 410-750-9663 or www.yuppypuppypetboutique.com.

Hailing Women's Suffrage

A parade commemorating the 85th anniversary of women's right to vote will take place at 2 p.m. Aug. 26 in Ellicott City. The march, sponsored by the Howard County League of Women Voters and the Howard County Commission for Women, honors the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and will feature county officials and representatives from local organizations.

The parade will leave from the Court House Drive parking lot, go down Court Place to Court Avenue and turn right onto the Main Street sidewalk, proceeding west to the Thomas Log Cabin site, where a congressional citation and county proclamation will be read at 3 p.m.

To participate in the parade, call the Howard County League of Women Voters at 410-730-0142 or e-mail lwvhc@bcpl.net.