Baltimore City and County Circuit Courts Celebrate National Adoption Day
(Annapolis, MD — November 13, 2006) Courts in Baltimore City and Baltimore County will celebrate National Adoption Day on Saturday, November 18, with dozens of adoptions followed by parties to honor the new families. Before noon on that day, four judges will help more than 50 children become members of permanent families during court proceedings that provide some of the court’s most joyful moments.
“Adoption days are happy days,” said Circuit Judge John O. Hennegan, who will preside over the Baltimore County proceedings on November 18. Judge Hennegan recalled presiding over the adoption of one older girl who told him, “I just don’t want to move anymore.”
“That simple statement says it all for me,” Judge Hennegan said. “The point of celebrating National Adoption Day is to highlight the fact that there are kids in our own neighborhoods who need loving, permanent homes, and the people who open their homes and their hearts to these kids are truly heroes who can make all the difference.”
The events in Baltimore City and Baltimore County have been organized through a collaborative effort with the Baltimore County Bar Association and the Baltimore City Bar Association Family Law Committee.
“We think this will be a wonderful opportunity to highlight and celebrate adoptions of all kinds, independent adoptions as well as adoptions of children who have been in foster care,” said Circuit Judge Audrey J.S. Carrion, one of three judges who will preside over adoptions in Baltimore City that day.
Baltimore City: Adoption proceedings will begin at 10 a.m. in the Ceremonial Courtroom in the Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr. Courthouse, 100 N. Calvert St. Three Baltimore City Circuit Court judges – Administrative Judge Marcella A. Holland, Judge Carrion, and Judge Edward R.K. Hargadon – will preside together over more than 40 adoptions, after which the new families will take part in crafts projects and enjoy the creations of a balloon artist during a reception to mark the special day.
Baltimore County: Adoption proceedings will begin at 11 a.m. in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County in the County Courts Building, 401 Bosley Ave., Towson. Judge Hennegan, who himself is an adoptive parent, will preside as approximately 10 families welcome a new member. The ceremony will be marked with music and a short address by Maryland’s Secretary of the Department of Human Resources Christopher McCabe. After the adoptions are completed, the children and their families will enjoy refreshments, face painting, live music, and other activities.
Last year the Circuit Court for Baltimore County was the first Maryland court to participate in National Adoption Day, which is celebrated annually throughout the United States on the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Last year, judges, attorneys, adoption professionals, child welfare agencies, and advocates helped to finalize the adoptions of more than 3,300 children from foster care in 45 states and the District of Columbia, and 227 events were held throughout the country to finalize adoptions and to celebrate all families who adopt.
The Circuit Court for Prince George’s County will celebrate National Adoption Day with a special event at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, November 15.
Members of the media are invited to attend and are welcome to bring cameras. For more information about any of the events, call the Court Information Office at (410) 260-1488. For more information about the Baltimore County event, you may also contact Craig J. Little, Esq., at the Baltimore County Bar Association at (410) 828-6100.