The 241st birthday of the United States Marine Corps will be celebrated at the Darien VFW Post #6933 at 205 Noroton Ave. on Nov. 12 at 1400 hours (2 p.m.).

It is open to the public and all branches of the armed services. There will be door prizes, food, a cash bar and music.

Shop to help

The women’s clothing store Helen Ainson has organized their Annual Multi-Store Shopping Event to benefit The Community Fund, Darien Arts Center and Opus Person-to-Person. The evening of shopping will take place on Nov. 17 from 5 p.m. till 8 p.m. and will include 10 businesses in Darien.

Businesses participating are: Helen Ainson, Folly, Olivette, Beadz Boutique, Wiggles & Giggles, Kirby and Company, Everything is Rosey, Baubles, Spree and Scena Wine Bar & Restaurant.

Attendees will receive 20 percent off (some exclusions may apply) at participating stores that evening, as well as 20 percent off food and drinks at Scena Wine Bar when they donate $25 at the door of any of the businesses. Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served and complimentary gift-wrapping will be offered at many of the stores.

Collecting for P2P Toy Store

For the 21st year, Person-to-Person will be hosting the Holiday Toy Store in December. With the support of a dedicated volunteer organizing committee, scores of volunteers and countless generous donors, more than 2,100 children will have a holiday that is merry and bright.

For low-income clients who struggle throughout the year to provide basic necessities such as food and clothing, the holidays can be particularly stressful. But with Toy Store, parents are able to select a free toy and book for each child plus a board game for the family to enjoy.

If you would like to stage a toy drive or donate unwrapped gifts, please contact Janet King at P2P Darien (203-621-0683) or Susan Zelman at P2P Norwalk (203-621-0703).

Gifts for all ages — birth to 15 years — are appreciated.

More than $15K to nonprofits

The First County Bank Foundation announced grants to four Darien nonprofits.

The awards are: The Community Fund of Darien, $2,500; At Home in Darien, $2,500; Person-to-Person, $7,500; and The Tiny Miracles Foundation, $5,000.

Bow hunting update

Fairfield County has become a top destination for bow hunters this season. Across the state, bow hunters have killed 2,464 deer this season. That’s nearly 300 more than a year ago.

The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection updates its deer harvesting list each week. Between Sept 15 and Oct. 31, hunters nabbed 12 deer in Darien.

To see the complete statewide totals: http://www.ct.gov/deep/lib/deep/hunting_trapping/pdf_files/ReportedHarvest.pdf.

Leaf pick-up

The Town of Darien Department of Public Works will continue to pick up leaves:

Nov. 14, north of railroad tracks;

Nov. 16, south of railroad tracks;

Nov. 28, north of railroad tracks;

Nov. 30, south of railroad tracks.

Leaves will only be picked up if bagged and the bag must be clearly marked “100% Biodegradable” and made of paper. Loose leaves or leaves in plastic bags will not be collected. Please check your local hardware or big box store and supermarket for availability.

Bags must contain only leaves. Bags containing brush, grass clippings, garbage, or other material will not be collected.

Residents are not required to participate in the town leaf pickup. Residents are encouraged to compost leaves on their property.

Dates listed are start dates. Bagged leaves should be at the curb by 7 a.m. on the date listed. Once leaves have been collected, no return trips will be made until the next scheduled pick-up.

Leaves will be collected on public roads only. Residents of private roads should make their own arrangements for leaf collection.

Residents with proper permit may also dispose of leaves at the Town of Darien Transfer Station.

The above schedule is subject to minor variations due to the volume of leaves encountered, snow storms, or other unforeseen circumstance. No other information will be available regarding specific leaf pick-up times. Please be patient.

For information, call 656-7346 or visit darienct.gov.

Forum looks at Sound’s future

Those with an interest in the waters of Long Island Sound, from recreational to commercial uses, have been invited to a public forum at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 16 at the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk to learn about and discuss the estuary’s future uses.

The forum, “Shaping a ‘Sound’ Future with the Long Island Sound Blue Plan,” will feature details about the state-mandated effort, plus a panel discussion and question-and-answer session with stakeholders. The event is free.

The Blue Plan — called for by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and state lawmakers in 2015 — will supplement the Coast Management Program’s existing authority in the deeper offshore reaches of the Sound.

The legislation establishes a process for the state to develop an inventory of Long Island Sound’s natural resources and uses and, ultimately, a plan to guide future use of the Sound’s waters and submerged lands. It is intended to prioritize the protection of existing natural resources and such uses as fishing, aquaculture and navigation from future conflicting or incompatible activities, and would not create new regulatory restrictions for them.

Charged with preparing the Blue Plan by 2019, the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and its Advisory Committee are hosting the forum to begin the process of gaining public and stakeholder input.

Speakers and panelists will include DEEP Commissioner Rob Klee; Nathan Frohling, from the Nature Conservancy in Connecticut; Bill Gardella, of the Connecticut Marine Trades Association; Melissa Gates, from the Surfrider Foundation; Dick Harris, from Copps Island Oysters; Christine Nelson, of Old Saybrook; Mike Theiler, from Jeanette T. Fisheries, and Brian Thompson, from Connecticut DEEP.

The forum will include a 28-minute documentary, “Ocean Frontiers II,” which follows a similar marine-planning effort in Rhode Island.

The public forum is hosted by the Blue Plan Advisory Committee and the state Department of Energy & Environmental Protection in collaboration with the Nature Conservancy, the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, Connecticut Sea Grant, Connecticut Marine Trades Association, Long Island Sound Study, Connecticut Charter and Party Boat Association, Surfrider Foundation, Connecticut Chapter of the American Planning Association, Norm Bloom and Son/Copps Island Oysters, the North American Marine Environment Protection Association, New England Science and Sailing, the town of Old Saybrook, Harbor Watch (a program of Earthplace) and Green Fire Productions.