Send announcements to The Loudoun Connection, 7913 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102, e-mail to or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is Friday, two weeks before the event. Photos/artwork encouraged. For more information, call Jennifer Lesinski at 703-917-6454.

This free listing is reserved for activities and events that are open to the public at no or minimal cost.

On Sunday, Nov. 27, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Loudoun (UUCL) will explore the topic of gratitude in celebration of Thanksgiving. UUCLÕs new minister, Amy DeBeck, will explore what we do as a faith community with our debt of gratitude for the many people who have afforded us our political and religious freedoms.

UUCL is a welcoming congregation and invites everyone to attend Sunday services, held at 9:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m., at the UUCL chapel, 20460 Gleedsville Road, Leesburg. Visit the Web site, or call the church at 703-737-7644.

Ox Hill Baptist Church will hold its annual Hanging of the Green service Sunday, Nov. 27, at 7 p.m. Hear the Christmas story and explore the symbolism found in the decorations as the youth choir sings anthems and the youth handbell choir performs. The church is located at 4101 Elmwood St., Chantilly. Call 703-378-5555 or visit

On Sunday, Nov. 27, at 10:30 a.m., the Rev. Melora Crooker will be the guest minister in the pulpit at the Unitarian Universalists of Sterling. Her sermon title is: "Let's Put the Fun Back in Dysfunctional: Family and the Holidays." UUS meets every Sunday morning at 10:30 a.m., at the Sterling Oaks Commerce Center at 22135 Davis Drive, off of Church Road near the W & OD Trail. Call 703-406-3068 or visit

Potomac Falls Episcopal Church invites families to its annual family Advent wreath making at the Eastern Loudoun Regional Library, 21030 Whitfield Place, Sterling, Sunday, Nov. 27, from 2-4 p.m. Cost is $10 per family. Space is limited, so call the church, 703-404-0900 for reservations or visit

Potomac Falls Episcopal Church meets for Sunday services, 10 a.m., at Horizon Elementary School, 46665 Broadmore Drive, Sterling.

Rabbi Neil Tow will be with Congregation Sha'are Shalom from Dec. 2-4. He will conduct a Tot Shabbat for children ages 2 to 5, at 7 p.m., Dec. 2 with a family friendly service following at 7:30 p.m. There will be Shabbat Morning services on Dec. 3 and at 7 p.m. a discussion, The December Dilemma, which will address the special issues that the winter holidays pose for Jewish families. The community is welcome to all events.

Congregation Sha'are Shalom, a Conservative congregation, is located at 19357 Evergreen Mill Road in Leesburg. Call 703-737-6500 or visit Rabbi Tow can be contacted at

The St. Gabriel's Alternative Gift Fair, where a person can buy Alternative Gifts for friends and family by making donations to local charities in the recipient's name, will be held Saturday, Dec. 3, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 4, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., at Belmont Ridge Middle School, 19045 Upper Belmont Place in Lansdowne. Nine Loudoun charities will be represented, offering gift choices ranging from $10-$75. Shoppers will receive ready-to-give gift cards with detailed descriptions of the gifts and the charitable organizations that benefit. Shop on line or order a catalog Call St. GabrielÕs at 703-779-3616 or e-mail All gifts are tax deductible.

"Children's Night at Christmas" will be presented at Ox Hill Baptist Church Sunday, Dec. 4, at 7 p.m. All four children's choirs and the children's handbell choir will participate in this celebration of Christmas. The church is located at 4101 Elmwood St., Chantilly. Call 703-378-5555 or visit

Congregation ShaÕare Shalom will host the first musical program in its new synagogue at 19357 Evergreen Mills Road, Sunday, Dec. 4, at 3 p.m.

The woodwind chamber group, Ensemble ˆ la Carte, will perform a work by local composer David Rubenstein along with works by Jacques Ibert, Georges Auric, and George Gershwin. ShaÕare Shalom Rabbi Neil will be joining the Ensemble for a selection of Traditional Hebrew songs as a guest vocalist with the Ensemble. In addition, Rubenstein, who lives in Reston, will be attending to see the performance of his 2005 composition A Summer Song for flute, clarinet, and bassoon. The performance will be followed by a wine and cheese reception with the musicians and Rubenstein.

Congregation ShaÕare Shalom invites all in the community to attend. The suggested donation is $10 each in advance or $15 at the door on the day of the performance.

Tickets can be reserved by mailing checks to Congregation ShaÕare Shalom, P.O. Box 4518, Leesburg VA 20175. Tickets are also available at the synagogue. Hours are posted on the Web site, or call 703-669-4588.

Christmas Bible school for children ages 4-sixth grade will be held Saturday, Dec. 10, at Ox Hill Baptist Church, from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Children will hear the Christmas story, make crafts and sing songs. Register by contacting the church, 4101 Elmwood St., Chantilly. Call 703-378-5555 or visit

Chanukah Extravaganza, Saturday, Dec. 10, 6:30-9 p.m., Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia, 8900 Little River Turpike, Fairfax. Free. Featuring arts and crafts; games; entertainment; latke and dessert bar; moon bounce and other gym fun. Call 703-323-0880, Ext. 39 or

Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 605 W. Market St., Leesburg, has a full schedule of community music events over the coming months, including:

* Dec. 4, 4 p.m. Advent and Christmas Concert, by the Choirs of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church

* Dec. 10, 7:30 p.m. Christmas Concert Ñ Vivaldi's "Gloria," by the Loudoun Chorale

* Dec. 11, Christmas Concert, by the 60-voice youth choirs of the Shenandoah Conservatory Arts Academy: The Blue Ridge Choristers, and TOPS Ñ Top of Virginia girls choir

* Feb. 26, 8:30 a.m., at Holy Trinity and 11 a.m., at St. James Episcopal, combined choirs, in worship setting: "Deutsche Messe" by Franz Schubert.

Fellowship ministries will be hosting a family movie day Saturday, Dec. 17. The group will be attending the movie, ÒNarniaÓ as a group and meeting in the lobby of the Regal Movie Theater located on Route 7 in Countryside, at 9:30 a.m. Movie time is 9:50 a.m.

Tickets should be purchased in advance. The cost $7 per person. For more information or to purchase a ticket, visit the church office located at 20962 Ashburn Road in Ashburn, or contact Pattie Krzywicki at

2nd Annual WF/EL Chanukah Bash fro western Fairfax/eastern Loudoun communities, Sunday, Dec. 18, 12-4 p.m., Congregation Beth Emeth, 12523 Lawyers Road, Herndon. Features arts and crafts; games; music and entertainment. Food available for purchase. Co-sponsored by Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia, Congregation Beth Emeth, Temple Beth Torah, Congregation Yad Shalom, Congregation Sha'are Shalom, Beth Chaverim Reform Congregation and Northern Virginia Hebrew Congregation. Call 703-323-0880, Ext. 39 or

Ashburn Presbyterian ChurchÕs Youth and Fun and

The youth of Sterling United Methodist Church are collecting pennies to support Methodist Church relief efforts for the hurricanes this year. The money collected will donated to a youth group in Mississippi or Louisiana whose church was destroyed by the hurricanes. The goal is 500,000 pennies by Jan. 28. A collection container is located in the church narthex, inside the main entrance. The church is located at 304 East Church Road. Call 703-430-6455.

Potomac Falls Episcopal Church meets for Sunday services at 10 a.m., at Horizon Elementary School, 46665 Broadmore Drive, Sterling. Sunday school for children and nursery care for infants is provided each week.

The Loudoun Church Alliance is a formal association of churches of many denominations, founded two years ago. It works in the areas of youth development, international missions, evangelism outreach, and is now working to develop relationships with government and business. Contact founder and missionary Jack Stagman at

The Unitarian Universalists of Sterling meet on Sunday mornings, at 10:30 a.m., at the Sterling Oaks Commerce Center at 21355 Davis Drive near Route 28 and Church Road. Call 703-406-3068 or visit

Beth Chaverim Reform Congregation will hold Sunday School every Sunday, from 9 a.m.-noon, at the Boyd Montessori School in Ashburn. In addition to Sunday School, a second day of Hebrew School will be offered Tuesday evenings, from 7-8 p.m., at Sanders Corner Elementary School. Attendance is limited to fourth- through seventh-graders and adults interested in learning Hebrew. Contact Lisa Kimball at or call 703-858-1999.