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Community briefs: Calling all tick collectors

Every naturalist's dream: to collect ticks for the San Mateo County Mosquito and Vector Control District.

The district has issued an open call to citizen scientists to come to an event on Feb. 6 at San Bruno Mountain State and County Park and help collect the bloodsuckers for local research on tick-borne illnesses, including Lyme disease.

Participants will get equipment and training.

Between 1 and 3 percent of western black-legged ticks the district has collected in the county have tested positive for one or more tick-borne diseases, district officials said.

Go to smcmvcd.org/citizenscience or call (650) 344-8592 for more information. The event will be held if weather permits. Reservations are required to participate.

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'Day of Giving'

During the holidays, students at Nativity School in Menlo Park collected their own money and change to raise more than $1,300 to buy gift cards for children at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital. This is the third year for a "Day of Giving," at the school, reports Nativity mom Monique Hughes.

"They personally raised over $1,300 for the kids this year and made beautiful posters and stories for the children over the holidays. It truly is the kids bringing in their change, which is the sweetest part," she says.

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Riekes Center

The Riekes Center for Human Advancement in Menlo Park raised a record $107,860 on Giving Tuesday (Dec. 1). This is the third year for Riekes Center to take part in Giving Tuesday. Last year's drive netted $10,000. Money raised will be used for the scholarship funds.

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Coldwell collects toys, coats

More than 3,000 toys and 1,200 coats to benefit families in need were collected during the holidays by Coldwell Banker Residential offices. This marks the 29th year Coldwell Banker has supported the annual Toys for Tots and One Warm Coat campaigns.

All 57 Northern California offices took part in the Toys for Tots campaign and most took part in the One Warm Coat drive, said Mike James, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.

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'Trash to Art' contest

Third- through sixth-grade classes, and students in these grades, are invited to submit artwork to the "Trash for Art" contest, sponsored by Rethink Waste, the public agency that handles trash and recycling in San Mateo County.

The top prize is $500 in cash and a pizza party for the winning class, and a $200 gift card for the winning student.

The artwork must be made from materials collected at home or school, or from everyday life. All mediums, including sculpture, collages and murals, are encouraged. Art pieces should not exceed 3 feet by 3 feet.

April 1 is the deadline for submitting artwork to the Environmental Education Center at the Shoreway Environmental Center, 333 Shoreway Road in San Carlos.

Go to RethinkWaste.org for entry forms.

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