Veterans Day Ceremonies

* The annual Veterans Day observance in Gaithersburg will feature Brig. Gen. Kenneth Chrosniak at 10 a.m. tomorrow at the City Hall Concert Pavilion, 31 S. Summit Ave., Gaithersburg. City officials and members of veterans groups will participate in a wreath-laying ceremony. 301-258-6350, Ext. 129, or

* Ron Merritt, a Rockville police corporal and veteran of the war in Iraq, will be the guest speaker tomorrow during a Veterans Day ceremony at 11 a.m. at Veterans Park in Rockville. The park is at the intersection of Route 355 and Veirs Mill Road. The event will include a wreath-laying by veterans groups and a 21-gun salute by the American Legion Post 86 Honor Guard. Post 86, located at 2013 Veirs Mill Rd., will hold an open house after the ceremony. 240-314-8605.

* The Maryland Aviation Administration and the USO of Metropolitan Washington will hold a Salute to Veterans and Military Families at 1 p.m. today in the upper-level terminal at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. The keynote speaker will be Col. Kenneth O. McCreedy, installation commander at Fort Meade. 410-859-7027.

Federal Benefits Forum

U.S. Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and the Maryland Federation of Chapters of the National Association of Retired Federal Employees will hold a forum called "Choosing the Right Federal Health Benefits Plan" for federal employees from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Monday at the Universities at Shady Grove, 9630 Gudelsky Dr., Rockville; and from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Holiday Park Senior Center, 3950 Ferrara Dr., Wheaton. Federal health insurance experts and representatives of insurance companies will be on hand. 301-424-3501.

Homeowner Workshops

The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission and the city of Gaithersburg will host two free workshops for homeowners interested in building or renovating their properties using environmentally friendly techniques. The workshops will offer ways to save money on home heating and options for alternative energy systems.

The workshops are from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at the commission's headquarters auditorium, 8787 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring, and from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday at the activities center in Bohrer Park at Summit Hall Farm, 506 S. Frederick Ave., Gaithersburg.

For information, call 301-495-4540 or 301-258-6310 or visit

A Look at Metro's Future

The Montgomery County Young Democrats will host a panel discussion on the future of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday. County Council member Nancy Floreen (D-At Large), WMATA representative Gene Counihan and other state and county officials will participate. Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center, 4805 Edgemoor Lane, Bethesda. Free. 240-777-8200.

Transportation Forum

The Metropolitan Council of Governments will host a public forum on transportation featuring regional transportation planning officials discussing land-use and transportation scenarios for the future from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Wednesday.

Takoma Park Mayor Kathy Porter and other state and county officials will attend. Piney Branch Elementary School, 7510 Maple Ave., Takoma Park. Free. 202-962-3295.

-- Compiled by ARUNA JAIN