Sept. 18, 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.
Subscribe to Our e-Newsletter
Was this message forwarded to you from a friend? You can subscribe to this newsletter directly so that you can receive it straight to your inbox from us!
Red Ribbon Community Yard Sale
October 4, 2014
The Harper's Choice Community-Wide yard sale is scheduled for October 4 from 8AM - 12PM. Call 410-730-0770 or email us to register your street.

Stop by Kahler Hall for a Red Ribbon that you can use to notify eager buyers that at least one resident on your street is participating.

The following streets have been registered:
  • Gloucester Road
  • Woodcutter Way
  • Eliots Oak Road
  • Cedar Lane
  • Hesperus Drive
  • Rock Coast Road
  • Hildebrand Court
  • Silver Tree Place
The Big Thank You
Letter Writing Campaign to Thank Our 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 appreciate the men and women who are not able to spend Thanksgiving Day with their families. Letters will be collected at Kahler Hall through October 17, 2014. 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.

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 address
  • Individual letters should not be sealed in envelopes
  • Do not send anything except letters

Please contact Susan at 410-730-0770 for more information or to set up an additional drop off location for letters.  

Did You Know...
Village Covenants are Part of Your Deed of Ownership?

What are the Covenants?


The Harper's Choice Village Covenants are a set of legal documents which are a part of your deed of ownership and represent a binding contract between the Village and each of its residents. Similar covenants exist for each of the villages in Columbi a.


The covenants address property maintenance standards, architectural control over exterior changes to the property, and in-home industry or professions. Complete copies of the Covenants may be obtained at Kahler Hall, or you may download them from our website.    


Covenant Enforcement Process


When a property in Harper's Choice is not being maintained or a change has been made to property without the prior approval of the Village Architectural Committee, the owner may be in violation of the covenants. Where practical, we suggest residents first talk with their neighbors about any concerns. Your view may be directly into your neighbors' rear yard, but they may not regularly see that pile of debris that is an eyesore to you. Talking with your neighbors can often resolve the matter without the formal intervention of Village officials.  


Please be aware that the staff of the Harper's Choice Community Association do not inspect homes for covenant violations as a regular course of business. Most often, violations come to our attention through complaints that may be made anonymously. The Covenant Advisor will make a site visit to determine the validity of the complaint and will then send the homeowner a letter asking for the problem to be corrected. Experience has shown that most violations are resolved this way.


In some cases, residents have circumstances that prevent them from quickly resolving the matter. We encourage residents to contact us promptly when they receive a letter from this office. Once contacted, we will work out a time frame that works for the individual property owner, as well as the Village.      


Rarer still is that property owner who, for one reason or another, chooses not to comply. We are then obligated to uphold the covenants and must seek remedy in the courts. All costs associated with these proceedings become the personal obligation of the homeowner and represent a lien on the property. It is important to note that the courts have consistently upheld the covenants, so promptly resolving a maintenance violation is in everyone's best interest.

Mark Your Calendars!
State of Our Schools in Harper's Choice
Do you wonder about the schools in Harper's Choice? How do our schools compare to other schools throughout the county, state, and country? What challenges do our schools face? Where are we succeeding? What needs improvement? 
Join us at Kahler Hall, 5440 Old Tucker Row, Columbia, MD 21044 on October 6 at 7PM for a forum to get those questions answered and more.

Participants include Superintendent Dr. Renee Foose, members of the Administrative Team at HCPSS Central Office, and principals from Longfellow Elementary, Swansfield Elementary, and Harper's Choice Middle School.

HoCo Shredding Event

Save the Date! October 18, 2014 (rain or shine) from 9AM - 1PM at the Long Gate Park & Ride near Meadowbrook Park. Residents may bring up to three bags or boxes of paper to be shredded onsite. Please visit the County's Shredding webpage for guidelines - they've answered your questions!



8th Annual Hope Bowl
November 1, 2014 from 7PM - 9PM at

Brunswick Zone Normandy in Ellicott City


Hope Bowl is a family-friendly event where teams compete while raising awareness and critical funds for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.


Join us for an evening of fun and friendly competition featuring music, refreshments, raffles and great prizes. 


Grab your family, friends and co-workers and form a team today! Register now! 


Interested in sponsoring the Hope Bowl?

Click here  to download the Sponsorship Commitment Form.



Please call 410.997.0304 or send an email.
Howard County Master Gardener Events
Bay-Wise Garden Tour
September 20 from 1PM - 4PM at 6401 Saddle Drive in Columbia.

Tour a local garden in Columbia featuring many Bay-Wise practices designed to improve the health of the Chesapeake Bay. Visitors will enjoy native plantings, wildlife habitats, a pond, and child-friendly play areas and learn about storm water management practices such as rain gardens.

This is a free event sponsored by The Howard County Master Gardeners of the University of Maryland Extension.

For more information, email Holly McFarland or Pat Harrington
Conservation Stewardship: Meadowside Vine Cutting
September 23 at 9AM at the South Wind Circle entrance of the Middle Patuxent Environmental Area (MPEA).

Clegg Meadow, our largest grassland, contains a riparian buffer planting site and a small cedar glade that local volunteers nurture and protect. The Meadow is also surrounded by mature strands of native hardwood trees. Slowly, these majestic meadow neighbors are succumbing to the ill effects of several different invasive vines. Participants will navigate the Meadow border and remove vines that can damage the mature trees. Weather permitting, attendees will hear a talk about Monarch butterfly natural history and see a demonstration of butterfly capture, tagging, and release methods.

For more information, contact Aylene Gard, Master Gardener at 410-992-9889 or Jeff Claffy, Assistant Natural Resources Manager MPEA at 410-313-6209. 
50+ Events
The Art of Aging
Join senior facilitator Marcella and Jim Wilding at the Glenwood 50+ Center from 10:15AM - 11:45PM on September 25, and October 2, 10, and 16 for candid discussions on what the later years bring, offer, and demand.

Each week promises an opportunity for growth, connection, and gaining new insight.

Topics include:
  • relationships
  • happiness
  • freedom
  • others as selected by the group are covered. 

Attendance each week is essential.  


To register by September 19, call 410-313-5440. Contact Karen Hull at 410-313-7466 for additional information.

Enjoying the Creative Arts Group Begins in October 2014
Are you interested in the arts?  Knowing more about the music you hear, the drama you watch or the art you see?  "Enjoying the Creative Arts" is a new, short-term group starting in October. Each month, a different genre of the creative arts will be discussed and enjoyed.
October will focus on the creative arts in its many forms; Suzanne Beal, Co-Producing Artistic Director of Rep Stage at HCC's Horowitz Center, is the featured guest. 

In November, the group will focus on the applied arts and in December will highlight drama.  The group  typically meets three times a month.  The first is a pre-event meeting to share and gain insight about the art experience; the next meeting will be an art experience (some may have a cost and transportation is not usually included); and at the last or "post" session, reflections on the art experience are shared.  Pre-registration required, limited group size. Interested?  Please contact Karen Hull at 410-313-7466 or Elaine Widom at 410-313-7353 for more information or to register.

Bereavement Group at the Bain Center
Find comfort in this short-term group  
for anyone mourning the loss of a loved one.  
The group provides a supportive time to explore the
process of mourning, coping strategies, and how to reconnect with life after loss.

A nominal fee applies for the series; partial scholarships are available.  Commitment to all seven weeks is essential.

Pre-registration is required. For more details, contact Karen Hull at 410-313-7466.

Local Events
Fall Equinox Twilight Hike and Campfire: S'mores and More!

September 23 from 5PM - 7PM, walk through the meadow and along the stream to the woodland campfire ring. Listen to the bird songs at dusk. Gather round the crackling fire, hear legends about the Equinox, sing songs, roast marshmallows, and enjoy s'mores. Hike back in time to watch the sun set over the horizon - exactly due west - and hear other interesting astronomical facts about the Fall Equinox. In case of rain, check the Howard County Conservancy website.  $5/person; $10/family. Registration required and available online!   

Fall Festival at the Howard County Conservancy
October 5 from 11AM - 3PM. Celebrate the beginning of Fall at the Howard County Conservancy! Visitors can listen to blue grass music, watch blacksmiths ply their trade, and marvel at the history of this three-century-old farm.  Goats, chickens, a diamondback terrapin and snakes will fascinate the youngsters. Our resident Barred Owl will also visit with attendees. Other festivities include children's crafts, pony rides and hay rides. Food will be  available to purchase. Please consider carpooling; parking is $10 per car.


HC DrugFree Drug Take Back Day
September 27, 2014
DEA Got Drugs

The next semi-annual Drug Take Back Day is scheduled for Saturday, September 27, 2014 between 10AM and 2PM. Seniors with unwanted or expired medications, families moving and cleaning out loved ones' homes after illness or death, households with young children, teens or pets - everyone needs to check their medicine cabinets!


Please begin cleaning out your unwanted or expired over-the-counter, prescription and pet meds to keep them out of the hands of youth, pets and out of the Bay.


For more information, please visit HC DrugFree's website and go to the Drug Take Back Day page for a complete list of convenient locations throughout the County or contact Joan Webb Scornaienchi, HC DrugFree's Executive Director at 443-435-0040.

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:
9/23, 10/14, 10/28. 

Village Board Meetings
The Village Board meets on the 1st Tuesday of the month at Kahler Hall. The next meeting is scheduled for October 7 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

Like us on Facebook    Follow us on Twitter   Find us on Pinterest
5440 Old Tucker Row  Columbia, MD 21044  410-730-0770