Early Childhood Day set, offers great start for kids
The 2017 Charles Coun- ty Early Childhood Day is a free event that provides parents, caregivers and early childhood professionals with resources to help children get a jump start on education. Engaging activities for young children will be provided by the vendors in attendance. The rain or shine event will take place on Saturday, Aug. 12, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Capital Clubhouse, 3033 Waldorf Marketplace in Waldorf.
With a “back-to-school” theme, Early Childhood Day brings child care providers, early learning experts, and organizations that work with children and families together in Charles County. The Charles County Sheriff’s Office will teach kids about safety with McGruff the Crime Dog, Charles County Public Library will feature the new Mobile Library and issue library cards, Maryland Kids In Safety Seats will provide car seat safety demonstrations, and the Humane Society of Charles County will provide opportunities to cuddle and learn about animals. Face painting, balloons, music, games, rock climbing, totsicles, physical fitness activities, backpacks, door prizes, storytellers and storybook characters are just a few of the kid-friendly options that will be available.
The Early Childhood Advisory Council’s mission is that all Charles County children, age newborn through 5, enter school ready to learn.
Exhibitor and sponsor registration information is available online at www.CharlesCountyMD.gov.
Library opens doors to homeless with ‘My Fresh Start’
The Charles County Public Library is partnering with Lifestyles Inc. to offer free showers for the homeless each month on the third Friday of the month.
“Our partnership with Lifestyles of Mar yland is extremely important and is very much in line with our strategic plan. One of our goals is to position the library as an indispensable community asset,” said Janet Salazar, executive director of the Charles County Public Library, in a press release. “We determined that by increasing our community partnerships, we can make a real difference in the lives of residents in our community.”
Providing this type of resource for the Charles County community is vital to the CCPL mission: to create opportunities for our community to engage, discover and learn, according to a press release. With input from the community the Charles County Public Library is working diligently to continue to be an indispensable asset to the community that values innovation while providing traditional library services.
“This partnership allows us to provide a much-needed resource to those who are without access to regular shower facilities, said Corae Young, assistant director of Lifestyles Inc. “We know that without such basic needs, it makes it much more challenging for persons to gain employment and become self-sufficient. We appreciate the Charles County Public Library for their support of those that are less fortunate.”
Individuals who come into the Waldorf West branch of the library on the third Friday of each month between 9:30 a.m. and noon (the library will be closed to the public) will be permitted to take a shower and connect with Lifestyles staff/ volunteers to receive information about additional resources that may be available to them. Prior registration is not needed.
For more information, call Charles County Public Librar y at 301934-9001, ext. 132, or Lifestyles Inc. at 301-6099900.
Nominations for 2017 Philanthropy Hall of Fame open
Residents of Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties are invited to recognize individuals, families, and businesses that have given back to their communities in extraordinary ways by nominating them for induction into the Community Foundation of Southern Maryland’s Philanthropy Hall of Fame. Between now and the end of September, residents will have the opportunity to acknowledge and honor those whom they believe deser ve to be widely recognized for their commitment to making Southern Maryland the best place to live and give.
Established in 2008, the Philanthropy Hall of Fame commemorates individuals and groups who have given selflessly of their time, energies and funds to improve the well-being of their communities. Hall of Fame inductees are honored at the foundation’s annual Philanthropy Day Luncheon, the foundation’s contribution to National Philanthropy Day celebrations across the country. This year’s Philanthropy Day Luncheon will be held at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Nov. 3, at the Greater Waldorf Jaycees Community Center, 3090 Crain Highway in Waldorf.
Commemorating the 10th anniversary of the Community Foundation of Southern Maryland, the theme of this year’s Philanthropy Day Luncheon is “Looking Forward, Giving Back.” This year’s keynote speaker will be veteran development director and speaker Linda Gottfried, whose experience includes raising funds for the MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center Foundation, Calvert Hospice, and the Southern Maryland Regional Office of the Alzheimer’s Association National Capital Area Chapter.
Nomination forms may be downloaded from the foundation’s website at www.cfsomd.org/philanthropy-day-luncheon/, or requested by calling 240-670-GIVE (4483). Completed nominations must be returned to the foundation by Saturday, Sept. 30. All nominees are based solely on nominations received. An awards selection committee with representatives from Southern Maryland nonprofit organizations, businesses and government agencies will review each nomination. To submit a completed nomination form, mail it to: Community Foundation of Southern Maryland, P.O. Box 716, Charlotte Hall, MD 20622.
For more information about National Philanthropy Day, go to www. npdlove.com. To learn about previous Community Foundation of Southern Maryland Philanthropy Hall of Fame inductees, go to www.cfsomd.org/philanthropy-hall-of-fame/.
SMECO, Origis Energy announce new solar project
Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO) and Origis Energy USA announced this week the parties have entered into a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to develop the new Ripley Solar 27.5 MWAC facility to be constructed on Ripley Road in La Plata. The solar facility, developed by Origis Energy, is expected to reach full commercial operation by mid-2019. SMECO will purchase all generated energy, capacity and Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs) for the next 25 years, helping the electric co-op to fulfill its state mandated renewable portfolio obligation at the lowest cost to its members.
Pending approval from the Maryland Public Service Commission and local permitting, the solar facility will be located on 300 acres in Charles County. The Origis Energy preliminary design calls for the use of single axis tracking technology and approximately 86,000 thin film solar panel modules. Construction will include the building of a short transmission line from the solar power site to the nearest substation. The project will create approximately 150 jobs during construction, which is anticipated to start in early 2019.
SMECO worked with the National Renewables Cooperative Organization (NRCO) to develop a request for proposals and evaluated approximately 20 submissions before selecting Origis Energy. In a press release, Austin J. Slater Jr., SMECO’s president and CEO, said, “Ripley Solar is the third solar project that NRCO has facilitated for SMECO, and their expertise has been invaluable. Developing solar projects right here in our service area gives us a couple of advantages. Not only are we able to procure renewable energy to help meet state requirements, but we are also able to avoid costly transmission fees.
“We’re looking forward to partnering with Origis Energy on Ripley Solar. The amount of solar energy this project will produce nearly doubles SMECO’s current solar capacity,” Slater said in the release.
Ripley Solar is expected to generate roughly 56,500 megawatt-hours (MWh) during its first year of operation, enough to power about 3,600 homes annually. An average SMECO household uses 1,300 kilowatt-hours (kWh) a month and 15,600 kWh per year.
“By purchasing more renewable energy, SMECO is demonstrating environmental leadership, sustainable energy generation responsibility and facilitating grid reliability,” said Guy Vanderhaegen, chief executive officer and president of Origis Energy. “We are most pleased to help SMECO provide its customers with clean, solar generated energy for many years to come.”
Purchasing solar energy is one way SMECO works to fulfill its renewable portfolio obligation, as required by the state, at the lowest costs to its members. Utilities are obligated to purchase 1.15 percent of their load from solar energy resources in 2017; that percentage increases each year until reaching 2.5 percent by 2020. Utilities that don’t purchase the required amount of solar energy must pay a penalty.