'Scrooge' kicks off Arts Council gala
The Hernando County Fine Arts Council is selling tickets for its third annual Winter Gala, which will be at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 10 at Stage West Community Playhouse, 8390 Forest Oaks Blvd.
A wine and hors d'oeuvres reception will start at 6:30 p.m. and will include a silent auction.
The premier of the play What the Dickens Happened to Scrooge, written by local author, playwright and storyteller Jerry Cowling, will be at 8 p.m.
Cowling's play tells the story of what happens when the folks affected by Ebenezer Scrooge's miserly ways hatch a plan to get him intoxicated, act out his life before him and force him to become the "most generous soul in London."
The play is directed by fine arts council executive director Myndee Fleury Washington and is being presented in cooperation with Stage West.
Tickets are $10.
Additional performances will be offered at 8 p.m. Dec. 11 and 2 p.m. Dec. 12. Tickets to the additional shows are also $10 but do not include the reception or auction.
Call the Fine Arts Council at (352) 754-4788 or the Stage West box office at (352) 683-5113.
Calling all poets for PCHH event on Dec. 3
Pasco-Hernando Community College will host its biannual Celebration of Poetry from 7 to 9 p.m. Dec. 3 in Room B-104 at the North Campus, 11415 Ponce de Leon Blvd.
Faculty, staff members, students and community members are invited to participate in the open-mike poetry reading.
Professor emeritus Richard Downing and professor of language arts Kay McKamy are coordinating the event. PHCC faculty, staff members and students, some of whom are published, will read samples of their work.
PHCC's North Campus Student Government Association will provide refreshments and door prizes.
Those interested in reading one or two poems may sign up at the door. For information, call Kay McKamy at (352) 797-5109.
Coast Guard Auxiliary seeks new members
The Hernando Beach Coast Guard Auxiliary will host a meeting for new members at 6 p.m. Dec. 6 at the training facility at 4340 Calienta St.
The auxiliary is the uniformed, volunteer component of the Coast Guard and supports the Coast Guard in all missions, except military and law enforcement actions.
Auxiliary members participate in patrols on local waterways, teach boating safety classes, conduct vessel checks and other perform other functions.
Membership is open to U.S. citizens 17 and older. A basic background check is required. Training is provided and included in the annual membership dues of $55.
Those attending the meeting who are interested in joining should bring proof of citizenship (passport or birth certificate), a driver's license and a check for membership dues.
For information, call Bruce McAllister at (321) 298-9921, the facility at (352) 596-6737 or visit the website at a0701508.uscgaux.info/Home.htm
Two programs seek volunteer tax helpers
The following programs are seeking volunteer tax preparers in Hernando County for the coming tax season:
• AARP Tax Aide is a free, volunteer-run tax preparation and assistance service that is offered February through March 15 at various locations throughout the county.
Experience in preparing taxes is not required. Tax preparation training is provided at no cost, and reimbursement is provided on a limited basis for qualified, program-related expenses.
Call Joan at (352) 200-5790, send e-mail to email@example.com or visit the website at aarp.org/ tavolunteer8.
• The United Way of Hernando County, in partnership with the Internal Revenue Service, offers the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program.
Volunteers will receive a free, IRS-certified training session on Dec. 7, 8, 14 and 15.
Volunteers can work as greeters, return preparers or quality reviewers.
Volunteers should be computer literate and have good communication skills. Call the United Way at (352) 688-2026 or visit unitedwayhernando.net.
Clothes, toys, more for needy at "Free Day"
Second Chance Restoration Ministries will host "Free Day" for the needy at 10 a.m. Dec. 4 at 19235 Cortez Blvd., in the Killingsworth Plaza.
There will be a giveaway of clothing, shoes, toys, electronics and other items. Complimentary refreshments will be served, including hot dogs, chips and drinks.
The event is for families and individuals in need. For information, call (352) 585-6083.
Rotary Club needs golfers for tournament
The Rotary Club of Brooksville is looking for teams or individual players for its annual golf tournament Dec. 8 at Brooksville Country Club at Majestic Oaks, 23446 Links Drive.
The tourney will begin with a shotgun start at 1 p.m. The cost is $75 per golfer, which includes a dinner.
Hole sponsorships are also available.
Sign-up sheets and sponsorship information is available online at brooksvillerotary.org. For information, call (352) 848-0016.
Several county boards need members
The Hernando County Commission is accepting applications from individuals interested in serving on the following boards:
• Library Advisory Committee. There is one vacancy as an alternate member, effective through Dec. 31, 2012.
• Hernando County Port Authority. There is a vacancy, effective through Dec. 31, 2012. The purpose of the authority is to oversee maintenance of the county's waterways, for both recreational and commercial activities.
• Hernando County Affordable Housing Advisory Committee. There are positions for a representative of the banking/mortgage industry; a representative of areas of labor actively engaged in home building, in connection with affordable housing; someone who is actively engaged as a for-profit provider of affordable housing; a real estate professional in connection with affordable housing; a representative of essential services personnel, as defined in the local housing assistance plan; and someone who represents employers within the jurisdiction.
Applicants for all of the volunteer positions must be residents and registered voters in Hernando County. Applications are available in the county administrator's office, Room 263, Hernando County Government Center, 20 N Main St., Brooksville, and must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. Dec. 17.
For information, call (352) 754-4002.
Check out library's audio, digital services
On Wednesday, the Digital Bookmobile National Tour will showcase the free audiobook, eBook and music download service that is available through the Hernando County Public Library System. The showcase is from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Spring Hill Branch/Harold G. Zopp Memorial Library, 9220 Spring Hill Drive.
Readers of all ages can learn how to download digital books from the library through interactive demonstrations and instructional videos.
A gadget gallery featuring iPod, Zune and Sony Reader will help visitors find portable devices that are compatible with the library's download service.
Library card holders can also check out and download digital titles online at digitalbooks.tblc.org.
The Digital Bookmobile is a 74-foot community outreach vehicle, housed inside an 18-wheel semitrailer truck. It is a service of the county library system and operated by OverDrive Inc. For information, call (352) 540-6374.
Library branches plan visits with Santa
Children of all ages are invited to visits with Santa at two library branches:
• 10 a.m. Dec. 4, Spring Hill Branch/Harold G. Zopp Memorial Library, 9220 Spring Hill Drive.
• 6:30 Dec. 7, East Hernando Branch Library, 6457 Windmere Road, Ridge Manor West.
Parents and caregivers are encouraged to bring cameras and take pictures of their children with Santa.
This is a free program sponsored by the Friends of the Library of Hernando County. For information, call (352) 540-6391.