Wake County residents are invited to recycle their holiday trees with the Happy Trails Holiday Tree Recycling Program, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Sunday, Jan. 19. Trees collected through designated Wake County Convenience Centers and select county parks will be chipped and used to mulch park trails. Site #1 at 10505 Old Stage Road, Garner will accept trees. Trees must be undecorated to be accepted. For more information, call 919-856-7400 or visit www.WakeGov.com/Recycling.
The Town of Garner will hold a public informational meeting on the indoor recreation center project at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22, at the Garner Performing Arts Center, 742 W. Garner Road, Garner. For more information, call 919-773-4442.
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The American Red Cross will hold a blood drive from 3 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 30, at St. Mary’s Church, 1008 Vandora Springs Road, Garner. To schedule an appointment, call 919-772-6738. Walk-in donors are also accepted.
Get some ’cue
The Garner Optimist Club will host its annual barbecue plate sale from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Feb. 7 at the Optimist clubhouse, 2110 Vandora Springs Road, Garner. Plates cost $8, eat-in or takeout, and include pork of chicken barbecue. Optimists use the money they raise from the event to support their youth programs.
The Public Library of Johnston County will host three free programs to help high school students prepare for the SAT and ACT college admissions tests. SAT challenge sessions will take place at 10 a.m. and noon Saturday, Jan. 25, while the ACT challenge will take place at 10 a.m. and noon Saturday, Feb. 22. The library is located at 305 E. Market St., Smithfield. For more information, call 919-934-8146.
Call for artists
The Johnston County Arts Council has issued a call for artists for the fifth Annual Johnston County Art and Food Festival, which will take place Thursday, March 6. The exhibit is open to all artists ages 18 and older who reside in N.C. For more information, visit www.JCArtsCouncil.org.
Chorale seeking voices
The Johnston County Chorale welcomes new voices. Registration is open during the month of January each Monday, 6:30 to 9 p.m., for the spring Broadway-type musical at the Clayton Center. For more information, email email@example.com.
The Africa Series
The Africa Series, by Jane Lillian Vance, will be on display through the spring semester at the Frank Creech Art Gallery, 245 College Road, Smithfield. A reception will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8. The lecture will begin at 5:30 p.m. For more information, visit www.JohnstonCC.edu/PerformingArts.
Hunter horse show
A hunter horse show will be held Feb. 15 at the Blaine-McLaughlin Stables, 1305C Lakewood Road, Four Oaks. For more information, visit www.Blaine-McLaughlin-Stables.com.
Johnston County Ag Center events
The N.C. Cooperative Extension Service will host several events throughout the month at the Johnston County Agricultural Center, 2736 N.C. 210, Smithfield. For more information on any of these events, call 919-989-5380.
10 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22: Small grain and grain sorghum growers are invited to a production meeting, which will end with lunch after presentations from Extension Specialist, NCDA, and agents.
2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22: All private applicators whose licenses expire in 2014 are invited to attend a Private Applicator Pesticide Recertification/Safety class.
8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 23 and noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 28: Annual respirator fit testing will be performed. Medical clearance will be required for individuals who were not fitted last year.
Events at Southeast Regional Library
Southeast Regional Library, 908 Seventh Ave., Garner, has an extensive list of activities for the whole family. Find a complete list of events at www.wakegov.com/libraries or call 919-662-2250.
2 p.m. Jan. 19: African-American authors Sharon Ewell Foster, Deborah Fletcher Mello, Lecilia Turnage, Jason Mott, and Cheris Hodges will be at the library to share their work, writing styles and characters.
Jan. 21 through Feb. 4: The public is invited to come in and create a Valentine for a Veteran. Completed Valentines will be delivered to the office for Veterans’ Services of Wake County.
3 p.m. Jan. 24: The Triangle Folk Ensemble will perform at the library.
3 p.m. Jan. 25: The library will host “The Golden Doorstop” by Judy M. Dove. The story, performed by students, tells the story of how a 12-year-old N.C. boy discovered the nation’s first gold mine. Registration is requested.
2 p.m. Jan. 26: Meet the Artisan: The Art of Woodworking will allow attendees to see the N.C. Woodcarving Association demonstrating their craft.
6:30 p.m. Jan. 28: Smarter Social Security Planning will teach participants how to maximize benefits received from Social Security. Registration is required.
7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6: "String Music in the Library" will give participants a chance to enjoy live string music from Emily Mabe and Jessica Taylor, cello & viola.
2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7: The February Book Bites program will discuss books featuring African-American authors which span the entire fiction genre. Attendees may enjoy a snack and are encouraged to exchange suggestions with one another and with the library staff. Registration is requested.
3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8: "Romance: There's a Book for That!" will give participants a chance to share reading suggestions about love and romance. Registration is not required for this hour-long, drop-in session.
2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9: "Home Budgets for Beginners" will offer instruction in using Microsoft Excel and other online resources for simple budget planning. Registration is requested.
3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9: "African-American History: There's a Book for That!" will give participants a chance to share reading suggestions about African-American history. Registration is not required for this hour-long, drop-in session.
7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12: "Craft It!" will allow participants to turn empty mylar bags into totes using only scissors and duct tape. All materials will be provided, but participants may also bring their own bags (coffee, cookies, animal food, etc.) to recycle. Ages 16 and up. Registration is requested.
11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 15: The SAT 10-Question Challenge will offer practice sessions for the SAT. The sessions provide sample questions, offer the experience of timed testing, and give strategies to raise scores and best prepare for this important test. Registration is required for these free, 1-hour sessions.
2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 16: "Find It!" will teach participants successful techniques for finding online books in a one-on-one setting. Librarians will offer suggestions for navigating the library's catalog and for placing reserves on these items.
7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 17: "Indoor Composting Made Easy" will teach two methods for odorless, year-round composting with Bianca Howard, a community education specialist with the City of Raleigh. Registration is requested.
7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19: "Meet the Artisan: Books as Art" will feature artisan bookmakers discussing their views on books as works of art and displaying their work.
A food pantry is open from 9 a.m. to noon on the second Saturday of each month at Christ Community United Methodist Church, 1082 Amelia Church Road, Clayton. The food is free to anyone presenting an ID card. For more information, call 919-934-0213.
Partnership for Children of Johnston County offers two programs for parents with young children.
• Motheread is a 12-week self-paced program that combines the teaching of literacy skills with child development and family empowerment issues.
• The Incredible Years parent program offers weekly group sessions for 14 to 16 weeks. Participants practice skills to promote children’s academic, social and emotional skills.
For information on times and location, contact Erica Reid at 919-202-0002, ext. 258, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Classic Car Club meets
Memory Lane Classic Car Club meets for dinner at 6 p.m. followed by the meeting at 7 p.m. the third Monday of the month at Golden Corral, 60 Son-Lan Parkway, Garner. For more information, call 919-553-6229.
An Overeaters Anonymous support group meets at 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays at First Presbyterian Church at the corner of Lakeside Drive and N.C. 50 in Garner. Park in the rear of the church and look for the OA signs. Call Sherylyn at 919-779-6392 or Regina at 919-614-3425 for more information.