Jan 6 New Year Environmental Reception

New Year Reception
County Environmentalists

Join Members & Friends of the
Sierra Club,Local Watershed Protection Groups
Co-Hosts Councilmembers Tom Dernoga, Will Campos & Eric Olson

As we welcome the New Year with Cool
Wishes for Progress on Environmental Issues
in Maryland This Year

Riversdale House Mansion
4811 Riversdale Road, Riverdale Park
Tuesday, January 6th
6:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Please invite friends and colleagues
Email this invitation (using link below)

Share some food, drinks, and environmental cheer! Join us to network, strategize, and celebrate with fellow Prince George’s environmentalists! Let us know if you would like to set up a table and display info about your group’s activities.

Special Thanks to MNCPPC
for the use of the Riversdale House Mansion

Please bring a main dish or side dish to share (optional)

We will provide soda, water, cider, hot chocolate and the like and sundry foods

Please RSVP today to Alex Hirtle at (301) 952-5349 or ajhirtle@co.pg.md.us

Police to Cite Cars Running Unattended

A Message From P.G. County Police District VI
Date: Tue, Dec 9, 2008
Subject: Thefts of Vehicles Left Unattended while Running

As we experience colder weather, it is tempting to warm up your vehicle. However, vehicles left unattended create a great opportunity for them to be stolen. District VI experienced three stolen vehicles yesterday [Dec 8] in which the vehicles were running while unattended.

It is illegal to leave a vehicle running and unattended.

The purpose of this message is to inform you of the recent thefts and also to provide notice that beginning tomorrow morning, patrol officers will be looking for vehicles that are running while unattended.

Officers have been instructed to issue citations for violations that are observed.

Please help us to reduce crime and take away the opportunity for crime!

Major Dwayne A. Preston
Commander, District VI
Prince George's County Police Department

Safe Shopper Tips

The Prince George’s County Police Department District VI Community Response Team wants to reduce crimes of opportunity at local area shopping centers.

By following the tips below, you can outsmart criminals and limit the opportunity for you to become a victim of crime this holiday season.

  • Carry cash/credit & debit cards deep in your pocket or in zipper pockets
  • Carry your wallets in your front pocket as opposed to the back pocket
  • Be aware of your surroundings when shopping in stores
  • Do not leave your purse unattended in the shopping cart
  • When in use, cover the account number on your credit/debit card with your hand and block the view when typing in your PIN
  • Make sure you lock your car when exiting the vehicle
  • Ensure your keys are accessible before exiting the store
  • Look around the parking area before exiting the vehicle
  • Lock the doors as soon as you enter the vehicle
  • Do not stop and talk to strangers in a parking lot/deck
  • Shop with a friend/family member - there is safety in numbers
  • ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings.
Call 911 For Emergencies or Crimes in Progress
Call 301-352-1200 for Non-emergencies
If you have information about recent crimes in Police District VI (Map), please contact the Prince George's County Police District VI Confidential Telephone Tip Line at (301) 931-3575 or email police_district6@co.pg.md.us

Nov 1 - Nominate Families for Christmas in April

Christmas in April is a non-denominational volunteer organization that repairs the homes of senior citizens who are either low-income and/or physically challenged so they may live in warmth, safety, and independence. After months of planning and preparation, Christmas in April culminates in a one day repair effort on the last Saturday in April.

For information about Christmas in April in Prince George's County, please see
http://www.christmasinaprilpg.org/FactSht.pdf and http://www.christmasinaprilpg.org

I regret the short notice, but if you can identify a deserving family, then please fill out this application form in full and send it directly to Christmas in April, so that it arrives by November 1, as described in the application form.

Please direct all questions to:

Christmas in April - Prince George's County
Executive Director: Mary Kucharski
Phone: 301/868-0937 Fax: 301/868-1053
e-mail: CinAPG@aol.com
website: www.christmasinaprilpg.org

Oct 16 - Safe Shopper Event - Crystal Plaza

In anticipation of the upcoming holidays, the Prince George's County Police District VI Community Response Team will be conducting the first in a series of Safe Shopper Awareness events.

This first one will be on Thursday October 16, 2008 at 6:30 - 9:00 pm at 12611 Laurel Bowie Road at Crystal Plaza Shopping Center in South Laurel (map).

Just take a few minutes and drop by our information tables in the parking lot near the Rite-Aid, to chat with community police officers, ask questions, and pick-up some easy but essential shopping safety tips to protect you and your family this holiday season.

See these Safe Shopper Tips.

Organized by Sgt T. Blackistone #2053, Community Response Team, Police District VI.

Green Fest at Vansville Elementary School Oct 11

FREE Shuttle Service from Greenbelt Metro
Compliments of College Park Honda

For information, call 301.883.4750
Or, Call Tom Dernoga, County Council District 1

If your company or environmental group would like to participate, please register at


Jo Jo's Discount Outlet Grand Opening

Jo Jo's Discount Outlet opened this Labor Day weekend in Crystal Plaza and is currently holding its Grand Opening. Drop in to find some bargains among their eclectic offerings of clothing, household items, etc.

PanAm Supermarket Now Open

Good food, good prices -- just around the corner from the old Rt 197 Giant grocery store -- at 111 Bowie Rd, next to the Office Depot. (Map). ¡Se Habla EspaƱol!

Montpelier Arts Center Events, Classes, Activities

Montpelier Arts Center
9652 Muirkirk Road, Laurel, MD 20708

301-490-2329 TTY

Directions To Montpelier Arts Center

Montpelier Arts Center is a dynamic multifaceted arts destination located on the grounds of historic Montpelier Mansion in northern Prince George's County. Montpelier Arts Center enriches the communities of central Maryland by providing quality visual, literary, and performing arts programs.

The Arts Center which opened in 1979 houses three galleries, artist's studios, and classrooms. Exhibitions include cutting edge work as well as more traditional approaches and feature both emerging and established regional, national and international artists. The Main Gallery is also the site for the performances of the Jazz, Folk/Blues and Classical music series. The gallery is also available on a limited basis for rental by community groups. Artist studios are open to the public, and offer insight into the process of creating artwork. Classes and workshops in the visual arts are offered throughout the year.

Read about our current programs below.

A permanent link to the most current information on the MAC web site is at Montpelier Arts Center in the Local Services section of this South Laurel News & Views website.

Sgt Findley Memorial Motorcycle Ride Sat Aug 23

From Aug 21, 2008 Laurel Leader Events Calendar

Police-escorted motorcycle ride to remember, Sat. Aug 23, rain date Aug 24, 10:30 a.m., leaving from Old Glory Harley-Davidson, 11800 Laurel bowie Rd.

Registration begins 7 a.m. 50/50 drawing, food and entertainment. $25 each rider, $15 passenger.

Proceeds got to Sgt. Findley's wife and children. event coordinated by the Beltsville Volunteer Fire Department.

First 200 To Register Will Receive a FREE Event Shirt.

Details at www.BeltsvilleVFD.com

Aug 21 WSSC Water Line Break on Muirkirk

Aug 21 WSSC Water Line Break on Muirkirk

Jul 29 Meeting with Giant Food MD Managers

Update Aug 10: (Click photos to enlarge)

Update Aug 1: Giant Food tells us that work on the Town Center Giant building will soon be completed in compliance with building code and permits (see below)
On Tuesday night, July 29, 2008 about 25 community leaders and residents attended a meeting at Our Savior Lutheran Church (thanks) that I very hastily arranged at Giant's request so our community could meet with officials of Giant Food of Maryland before the closing of the Town Center Giant on Thursday, July 31. (See July 3, 2008 Press Release below). My apologies to those who saw the meeting announcement late or not at all.

Giant Customer Affairs had asked to meet with us to discuss the situation frankly, to learn what Giant was already doing to ease the impacts of the closing, and to learn from our community what more they could do – but they said the decision to close the store was not reversible.

Present from Giant Food of Maryland were:

  • Eileen Katz, Manager, Customer Affairs

  • Robin Michel, General Manager

  • Jim Meyd, Regional VP

  • Jamie Miller, Public Affairs

The first question asked was, how did we get to the point where Giant felt they had to close the Town Center Giant? The Giant managers were forthright and non-defensive, saying that there had been multiple problems with the building (broken bakery oven, etc. and that mistakes had been made (unspecified), and multiple attempts to recover customers with special prices, coupons, etc had all failed. The Giant managers had little more detail to offer and it was not clear how much they could really do - but they genuinely listened to our concerns and suggestions. Ms. Michel asserted that all Town Center Giant employees had been given reassignments – that no one had lost their job, which contrasts with, but is not necessarily contradicted by, word reportedly from Giant employees that some of them have had to quit because the reassignments they were offered to distant locations, like Gaithersburg, were not feasible for them.

Many of the residents present expressed in various ways how “mind-boggling” it was that Giant thought it could not make a profit with thousands of people living so close, many within walking distance. Why did Giant not make a long-term investment in the Town Center Giant after Giant was bought by the Ahold corporation of the Netherlands (such as completing the interrupted renovations) like it very visibly invested in other communities, like Bowie?

It was also not clear why the closing wasn't announced further in advance (not just 30-days) to give our community time to respond to mitigate the serious impacts of losing our neighborhood grocery store.

Many of those present recounted stories about how nice the old Giant used to be under the U.S.-owned Giant Corporation and its very personable past store managers, such as Norman Harris. And how the community had responded with sadness and sympathy when Town Center Giant employees, like Tom, died – because there was a very real and harmonious relationship with the community, that has been lost since the Ahold take-over.

The Giant managers described the six things they are currently doing to ease loss of the grocery store at Town Center – as listed in their July 24 email (below) – focused initially on those who walk to the Giant and will have difficulty getting groceries after the July 31 closure:

  • Starting a shuttle bus from the Park View Senior Apartments to the Route 1 Giant in Laurel

    • Multiple runs on Mondays & Fridays starting at Park View at 9 am through 11 am

  • Promoting Giant's web-based home delivery grocery service, PEAPOD.com

  • Transfering Town Center Giant customer prescriptions to Town Center CVS; Customers can transfer their prescriptions to any other pharmacy.
  • Actively looking for a new tenant to take over the lease of the empty building

  • Encouraging South Laurel residents to shop at the Route 1 Giant Food store

    • South Laurel residents were recently sent a flyer with coupons for discounts and free items

    • Call the Giant Customer Affairs number below if you did not get yours.

  • General Manager Robin Michel directed Giant Customer Affairs to give high priority to providing well-informed, timely responses to all inquiries from our community's residents regarding the Town Center Giant closing.

They asked what suggestions we had for what more they could do:

  • Most importantly we asked that they pro-actively and expeditiously seek a good grocery store tenant for that building, and to fully cooperate with nearby property managers who are also searching for a grocery store tenant for that location (as an anchor store for Town Center).

    • Ms. Michel said Giant would fully cooperate with community efforts to find a grocery store tenant.

    • That old building is sub-optimal for the newest style grocery stores – but it could still support a good neighborhood grocery store.

  • We asked that Giant immediately provide security for the empty building, so it would not become a hang-out ... suffer graffiti ... vandalism ... and fire – as has happened recently with other empty buildings nearby, such as at the old golf driving range at the west end of Muirkirk Rd.

    • The Giant store property is not part of the adjacent Town Center property, so it needs its own full security coverage

  • Participate with the Prince George's County in arranging transportation to other nearby grocery stores (including the Bottom Dollar, not just the Route 1 Giant) for people living in the surrounding apartments (not just Park View) who don't have cars -- who currently walk to the Town Center Giant.

  • Continue to send discount coupons to all South Laurel residents

  • Send bonus cash to South Laurel residents with registered Giant Bonus Cards

  • Continue to cooperate with residents' new suggestions to ease the impacts on our community

    • Contact Giant Customer Affairs (above) with your own suggestions and requests

Prince George's County Councilman for District 1, Tom Dernoga noted that the Town Center Giant building currently may not be not in compliance with several county permit conditions (unspecified) and may be at risk of being fined. Those conditions need to be corrected ASAP for compliance and so that the building is made more enticing to a prospective new grocery store tenant.

July 3, 2008 Press Release - Giant Town Center Closing

Giant Replies July 24, 2008

Giant Replies July 22, 2008

South Laurel Residents Petition to Keep Giant

South Laurel Giant Food Store to Close July 31

A Growing Town Center Giant News File
(Then click on "Town Center Giant Food Closing 7/31")

Giant Replies July 24, 2008

This is Giant's reply to my July 23 email (at bottom of this article)

From: ConsumerAffairs@giantofmaryland.com
Date: Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 2:05 PM
Subject: Ref # 499778 - Reply from Giant Consumer Affairs
To: Garold Stone

Thank you for sharing your concerns related to the pending closing of the Giant Food store in the Town Center shopping center. We do understand that many residents living in South Laurel will be affected by the closing of this store and we apologize to the community for any inconvenience. It was a very difficult business decision to close this store.

I am pleased to inform you that we are working with the management at Park View of Laurel Apartments to coordinate a shuttle service for their residents to the Giant store in the Laurel Center on Route 1. The details of the shuttle service still need to be finalized but we anticipate that the shuttle will run several days a week at various times that are convenient for the residents. The shuttle service should begin running in early August. We are also working with Peapod to proactively communicate their home delivery services as we understand that this is a convenient option for many residents who are unable to drive to a grocery store. Finally, our Real Estate department is actively seeking a replacement tenant to occupy the space where the Town Center Giant is currently located.

Thank you again for giving us the opportunity to address your concerns. We look forward to continuing to serve the residents of Laurel for years to come.


Deborah Riley
Supervisor, Consumer Affairs


FROM: Garold Stone, July 23, 2008

TO: Jackie Pullman, Customer Care Representative, Giant Food of Maryland

cc: Prince George's County Council District 1, Tom Dernoga (nb: Judy Thacher)
MD District 21 Senator Jim Rosapepe
MD District 21 Delagate Barbara Frush
MD District 21 Delegate Ben Barnes
MD District 21 Delegate Joseline Pena-Melnyk
MD District 23 Senator Douglas Peters
MD District 23A Delegate Gerron.Levi
MD District 23A Delegate James Hubbard
Prince George's County Board of Education District 1 Member, Rosalind Johnson
Prince George's County Board of Education At-Large Member, Donna Hathaway-Beck
South Laurel Community Associations Leaders
Coalition for Laurel Area Safety and Prosperity

In your recent email reply to a South Laurel resident you said:

We never like to affect our customers or associates by closing our stores. We hope that our customers will be able to shop at the following nearby Giant locations:

1009 Fairlawn Street in Laurel, MD
11701 Beltsville Drive in Beltsville, MD

Unfortunately, the closing of your store will have severe adverse consequences for many of your former customers who live in South Laurel, especially those who can't possibly shop at those other Giant locations, which are not at all "nearby", particularly for those without cars, such as but not limited to, residents of the Park View Senior Apartments across the street from the Town Center Giant and the immediate surrounding homes and apartments. And this does not tally the loss of future donations to local schools and other community service organizations via the now vanishing Town Center Giant.

I ask that you please tell me what all Giant is doing already and plans to do soon to mitigate the great suffering in our community caused by the abrupt closing of your Town Center store.

Ideally, Giant of Maryland would have worked beforehand with the local community and local county government officials to facilitate another (competitor) grocery store moving into your abandoned building as soon as possible after July 31, or otherwise soften the impacts.

That notwithstanding, please consider what other tangible ways you might mitigate our suffering. You could create, distribute and publicize (in local newspapers, on your web sites, etc.) information identifying public transportation services that would help car-less South Laurel residents actually get to your other "nearby" Giant locations. And since for some, especially the elderly, a grocery-laden bus ride even as far as to the Route 1 Giant is out of the question, that transportation list should include the closer (competitor) Bottom Dollar food store, which is still too far to walk to for many in South Laurel. While you are at it, you could also mention PeaPod.com for home food delivery. You get the idea -- be creative, be caring, leave no customer behind !

The compelling question now is what, if anything, will Giant actually be doing to ease the pain in our community being caused by your store's sudden departure. Just a few hours work by Giant, costing just a few hundred dollars, could mitigate a callous breach of the trust with our community that Giant has worked so hard for decades to earn, with positive consequences for your company's reputation as a good neighbor business, not just in the Laurel area but throughout the region. Some of us may be car-less but we are not clueless. Your actions here and now will resonate broadly into the future. Can we "Trust Giant" to do the right, humanely compassionate things for the people of South Laurel even as you leave our community ?

I hope your timely and well-considered answer will give real meaning to your words -
"We never like to affect our customers or associates by closing our stores."

Giant Replies July 22, 2008

Giant Food of Maryland sent the following reply to an email from a South Laurel resident:

Date: July 22, 2008 3:55:06 PM EDT

Subject: Reply from Giant Consumer Affairs

Thank you for contacting us to express your feelings about the Laurel Town Center Giant closing on July 31.

We understand your disappointment and want you to know that this was a very difficult decision. We never like to affect our customers or associates by closing our stores. We hope that our customers will be able to shop at the following nearby Giant locations:
1009 Fairlawn Street in Laurel, MD
11701 Beltsville Drive in Beltsville, MD
We will close the Pharmacy on July 31. Pharmacy customers will receive notification by mail in advance of the closing with details on pharmacy record transfers.

Currently, the Laurel Town Center store employs 69 associates, all of whom will be given opportunities to transfer to other area Giant stores.

It has been our pleasure serving your community and we look forward to continuing to serve you in our other stores.


Jackie Pullman
Customer Care Representative

South Laurel Residents Petition to Keep Giant

Some residents of South Laurel have told me they are working up a grass-roots email petition campaign to save the Town Center Giant Food store that is scheduled to close next week, on July 31.

Residents are being encouraged to send emails to Customer Care Representative, Jackie Pullman at ConsumerAffairs@GiantOfMaryland.com

Young Police Explorers Need Donations for Trip

Young men and women members of Police Explorer Post 600 sponsored by our local Prince George's County Police District VI (Beltsville, Greenbelt, Laurel, Calverton, Adelphi, Monpelier and Knollwood) (MAP) are trying to go to Denver to represent Prince George's County in the annual police explorers national competition. Last year two District VI Police Explorers took top honors in those events testing their knowledge and fitness.

The original plan was to drive out to Denver -- and they raised enough money the usual ways for driving expenses. But just last week they suddenly learned that they won't be able to go by car.

Karen Coakley, the president of Beltsville Citizens Association, is trying to help the Explorer's raise enough money to fly to Denver. She says, "I realize this is short notice.... However I need to raise $6000 by Friday. If 60 people contribute $100 or 120 people contribute $50 we can do this. We are almost there". So any amount right now will really help get them there.

Please consider making a donation with your tax-deductible (*) donation check payable to: "Prince Georges County, Department of Police, Explorer Post 600, Inc."

Get your check to Police District VI, 4321 Sellman Road, Beltsville, MD 20704, (301) 937-0910 by Friday, July 18. OR email me (Garold Stone), garolds@yahoo.com, and i'll come pickup your check and take it to Police District VI for you.

(*) Police District VI Explorer Post 600 is part of Law Enforcement Exploring, which is a 501(c)3 tax-deductible program of the Boy Scouts of America.

Laurel Police Officer Struck by Hit & Run July 13

Kafe Kabab Opens in Crystal Plaza

The new Kafe Kabab restaurant began its Grand Opening today in Crystal Plaza. Download their extensive menu and free drink coupon

South Laurel Giant Food Store to Close

For weekly Super Grand Mart specials, see Local Bargains & Specials

July 10 Laurel Leader article and Laurel Connexions Blog comments

I was in the Giant Food store today on Laurel-Bowie Rd. One of the employees told me that Giant had notified workers that the store would be closed soon and they would be offered jobs at the other Giant Food stores in the area. He indicated there might be something about it in this week's local papers tomorrow. As of 10 pm tonight, the Laurel Gazette and Laurel Leader websites did not have articles about the closure.

Aug 5 National Night Out Party - FREE Fun & Food

25th Annual National Night Out Celebration
Tuesday August 5th
6 pm to 8 pm.

Prince George’s County Police District VI
4321 Sellman Road, Beltsville (not far from CostCo)

UPDATE: Free Parking & Free Shuttle Buses
To avoid congestion in the immediate vicinity of the event, Free shuttle buses will run to Police District VI Station from these nearby Free parking areas:

1) Beltsville Elementary School 4300 Wicomico Avenue (MAP)
2) St Joseph's Church & School 11007 Montgomery Road (MAP)
3) Beltsville Community Center 3900 Sellman Road (MAP)

In all cases, avoid travel on Sellman Rd between Route 1 and Montgomery Rd, where congestion is expected.

There will be crime prevention tactics and many displays to include: K-9 demonstrations, police motorcycles, new police cruisers, police mountain bikes, horse mounted unit, Police Explorers, Junior Investigators, drug display, bomb robot, military Hum-Vees, a radar and laser station, fire trucks and tankers, a property ID station, a preventive auto theft station, and many others.

There are many free activities to include: moon bounce, baseball fast
pitch station, football throwing competition, basketball shoot out, child ID kit, arts and crafts station, and much more.

There will be plenty of free food and drinks. Just to name a few items on the menu: hotdogs, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, BBQ chicken, veggie burgers, fried rice, pizza, BBQ beans, many cold salads, cakes, cookies, pies, and much more.

There will also be a live DJ.


Thanks to Adirondack Tree Experts for being a major contributor and sponsor for the last 14 years!

Cpl Findley: Viewing, Service, Procession, Donations, Blue Ribbons

Cpl. Richard Findley (Rest in Peace)

Photo Courtesy of Beltsville Volunteer Fire Department

July 2, 2008 Update --
Montgomery Road left on to Sellman Road
Sellman road down past District 6 Police Station across Rhode Island then left on Queen Ann
Queen Ann then right on Prince George's Avenue past the Beltsville Volunteer Fire Department
Prince George's Avenue to right on Powdermill Road
Powdermill to I-95 Southbound

July 1, 2008 Update:
If possible, please consider trying to attend at least one of the events listed below to honor Prince George's County Police Cpl. Findley, who was also a volunteer fireman. In both roles he served the South Laurel area as much as other parts of the District VI area of Prince George's County (Laurel, Beltsville, Calverton, Adelphi) -- and it was in South Laurel that he was killed serving our community.

Please see the Updated Procession route (below) and on Thursday before and after the 11 am service, please consider standing along that route when the procession lead by a fire truck will pass carring Cpl. Findley to the 11 AM service and then after the service (about Noon) to his interment.

June 29, 2008 Update:

Montpelier Community Association is collecting donations from its residents and anyone else, which will be given to the Findley family. Checks only, please, made payable to "MCA" with "Findley Fund" in the memo line. Mail donations to MCA, PO Box 2503, Laurel, MD 20709-2503 or drop your donation off at the pool office or at 12215 Shadetree Lane anytime before July 18th. Donations will be given to the family on July 21.

To donate via the Hillandale Gardens community's Findley Fund contact Pat Meyers at patmyers2@verizon.net

For compiled news updates about the June 27 killing in the line of duty of Prince George's County District VI Police Cpl. Richard Findley, watch this link Slain PG Police Cpl. Richard Findley (also listed in the News File section of this blog).

Watch this blog post and www.beltsvillevfd.com for updates regarding honoring Cpl Findley's service to our community and support for his family. Updates and corrections are welcome to garolds@yahoo.com

Cpl. Findley's family have asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be considered to:

H.E.R.O.E.S. Inc
666 Eleventh Ave Suite 300 NW
Washington, DC 20001


Beltsville Vol Fire Dept
PO BOX 831
Beltsville Md 20705

At www.beltsvillevfd.com there is an ever growing memorial to Cpl. Findley and you can leave messages to the family in a guestbook there.

PROCESSION ROUTE (Updated July 1, 2008 by Karen Coakley, BCA)

On July 3 Thursday, just before the 11 AM service
  • From Borgwardt's Funeral home
  • Up Caverly
  • Onto Montgomery Road
  • To St Joseph's Church

After the 11 a.m. service on Thursday July 3, around noon a Beltsville VFD fire truck will lead the procession to the cemetary along this route:
  • From service at St. Joseph's Church 11007 Montgomery Road (MAP )
  • Left On Sellman Rd
  • Past District 6 Police station (MAP)
  • Left on Rhode Island Ave
  • Right on Prince George's past the Beltsville Volunteer Fire Department (MAP)
  • Right on Route 1 to I-95
As a way to show our respect and gratitude for Cpl. Findley's service and support for his family people are urged to stand along that procession route displaying Blue Ribbons or other appropriate expressions of gratitude and support, including simply standing there respectfully watching the procession pass.

Also, startng now, all around our Laurel - Beltsville community served by Police District VI,
please consider displaying blue ribbons to honor Cpl. Findley.

Here again are the Viewing, Service, and Interment details:

Viewing: Wednesday July 2, 2008 2 pm to 4 pm and 7 pm to 9 pm Borgwardt Funeral Home 4400 Powder Mill Road, Beltsville, MD. 20705 (MAP)

Service: Thursday July 3, 2008 11:00 am Saint Joseph's Catholic Church 11007 Montgomery Road, Beltsville, MD. 20705 (MAP)

Interment immediately following service at: Lakemont Memorial Gardens 900 W. Central Avenue Davidsonville, MD. 21035 (MAP)

This information is provided via the Prince George's County Police District VI Citizens Advisory Council, with special thanks to District VI Commander Major Dwayne Preston, Karen Coakley and Johanna Stefanelli.

Sat June 28 Free Youth Basketball Tournament

Just south of Muirkirk Rd and Route 1

Just drop-in! Online registration helpful but not required.

For future PAL youth activities this summer in the Laurel/Beltsvile/Adelphi/Calverton area contact Cpl. Carter 301 937-0910

PG Police Department Press Release about PAL Summer Basketball Tournament - Free Transportation

Old Muirkirk Meadows Driving Range Fire June 13

At 4 AM Friday, June 13, 2008 Laurel Volunteer Fire Department extinguished a fire inside the old golf driving range office building which has been empty for over two years at the west end of Muirkirk Rd at Muirkirk Meadows Rd (map). This was learned from comments at 3:30 pm by a Laurel Volunteer Fire Fighter on the scene, whose unit and two other fire trucks had come back that afternoon to handle a rekindle at the site.

As happens with empty buildings, for the past several months there has been, and still is, extensive graffiti on the west-facing wall, and it may have become a hangout.

Man in standoff with county police - June 11, 2008

Here is an early Prince George's Gazette article about today's police barricade and gun shot at Contee Rd and Rt-197.

Later on June 11 it was learned that the incident was over. The despondent man committed suicide.

June 12 Update: Revised Prince George's Gazette article

Free Tornado/Severe WX Cell & Email Alerts

Free Tornado/Severe Weather Alerts by Cell Phone Text Message or Email

The alert service is free. The cost of delivering cell phone text messages depends on your cellphone billing plan.

Other alert services by email, telephone voice, cellphone text or computer screen icon -- are also listed at that web page, some are free and some are paid

June 7: Rare Live Indian & Jazz Music Event at Sapphire Includes Indian, Thai & American Buffet

June 7: Church Building Fun-Raiser

On Saturday, June 7 from 8 am to 1 pm, in the parking lot of St. Nicholas Catholic Church, 8603 Contee Rd, there will be a Fun-Raiser (flea market) by the Touch of Love Bible Church, so they can soon move out of their office suite on Contee Rd into a brand new real church building on Muirkirk Rd near South Laurel. As many know, Touch of Love is very good neighbor, like when they worked with St. Nicholas and the local community to shut down a local murderous bar and close a nearby dangerous strip club. Please come out, have fun and welcome & support our good neighbor. (map) Rain Date: June 14.

MD State Hope Hotline Prevents Foreclosures

Maryland State Counseling, Refinance, Loan Programs
to avoid mortgage default and foreclosure


Thefts From Vehicles - Out of Sight, Out of Mind

Prince George's County Police have launched a county-wide campaign to reduce property crimes, including thefts, vehicle thefts, and especially thefts-from-vehicles, which make up the majority of property crimes in our South Laurel area.

Please take the simple precautions listed in this flyer and this Police Department press release, so you won't suffer the cost and inconvenience of your car being broken into and your valuables stolen.

Sat May 3 Island Flavors Anniversary Celebration

UPDATE - Island Flavors Closed Oct 2013
You are Invited to
Saturday, May 3, 2008 2 PM

12633 Laurel Bowie road
LAUREL, MD 20708


Major Beltway construction April 19 Branch Ave

The State Highway Administration has rescheduled for the weekend of April 19 a major construction project that will close the Capital Beltway at Branch Avenue for up to 17 hours (MAP). Details

April 19 Join Event to Stop Theft From Vehicles



YOU are invited to participate with Prince George's County Police Officers in this first of several planned community partnership events to hand out crime prevention literature about how to stop the high number of thefts from vehicles in our communities, which hurts us all in many ways.


Saturday, April 19th

START: 10:00am

END: 1:00pm

WHERE: Please meet District VI Police Officers at one of these two locations at 10 AM

  • Town Center Shopping Mall (meet near McDonalds)
    13210 Laurel Bowie Rd, Laurel
    ( MAP at www.tinyurl.com/559evw )
    Work Areas: Town Center Mall and Laurel Square Apartments (behind the Giant)


  • Powder Mill Village Apartments (meet near the entrance)
    3625 Powder Mill Rd, Beltsville ( MAP at www.tinyurl.com/5nj2hu )
    Work Areas: Powder Mill Village and Calverton Shopping Center

For further information please contact:

A/Sgt. Kevin Carter
Community Response Team
District VI Beltsville Station
4321 Sellman Rd., Beltsville, Maryland 20705
301-902-2055 Desk kacarter@co.pg.md.us

Mar 31 7 pm Town Hall Meeting by Councilman Dernoga

Prince George's County Council member Thomas Dernoga is holding a Town Hall meeting Monday, March 31, at 7 p.m. at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School, 4545 Ammendale Road, Beltsville (MAP)

The meeting will focus on next year's budget (*), but participants are free to bring up other issues, such as zoning, traffic or crime.

Representatives from the School Board, Department of Public Works and Transportation, and Department of Environmental Resources, will be on hand to answer questions, as will Major Dwayne Preston, the new county police commander for northern Prince George's County.

(*) Budgets are the way our values and priorities get implemented by our local government. Please come and help our community get those values and priorities right.

April 2 P.G.Transportation Planning Meeting

April 2, 2008
6:30–9:00 p.m.
Eleanor Roosevelt H. S. Cafeteria
7601 Hanover Parkway
Greenbelt, Maryland

Transportation affects us all. Come, learn, and share your ideas and questions.
⇒ What strategies should be recommended to improve accessibility to transit?
⇒ What types of communities should transit be serving?
⇒ What is the process for funding roadway, transit, and bikeway improvements?
⇒ If we build it (a multimodal, convenient, bike- and pedestrian-friendly transportation network
focused on transit-oriented, mixed-use development) will you come?
⇒ How and where should the Purple Line be extended beyond New Carrollton?
⇒ What are your ideas for trail connections to schools, parks, and other destinations?
⇒ How will this plan help me in my work commute? What are some future options for me?
⇒ Will I be able to ride my bike to National Harbor? … or rail over the Woodrow Wilson Bridge?

Informational Flyer With Directions to This Event

Additional Information at M-NCPPC

School Bus & Car Collide on Muirkirk 4 pm Mar 13

Around 4 pm Thursday, March 13, 2008 a Prince George's County Schools bus and a red car collided on Muirkirk Rd at Lanner Place (just west of Montpelier Elementary School.) This was two hours after Montpelier ES had let out.

By-standers told me the collision occurred as the red car exited Lanner Place turning left onto Muirkirk. The image shows a piece of the front of the red car under the bus. The red car ended up plowing through a wood fence into in the back yard of the home at the south-west corner of Muirkirk and Lanner Pl.

Apparently, the car's driver was injured and taken from the scene in an ambulance. There was no information about any other passengers of the car or the bus driver or bus passengers, nor whether there were other injuries.

Police District VI Adds Email Tip Line

Prince George's County Police District VI (*) has added a Tip Line email address police_district6@co.pg.md.us to its recently established confidential Tip Line phone number (301) 931-3575 (previous Tip Line article)

Police District VI Commander Brewer asks citizens to use the Tip Line phone or email to
provide any information or tips about crimes or suspicious activity.

For emergencies or crimes in progress, please call 911, for immediate response by Police or other public safety services.

For non-emergencies that
nonetheless need the response of a police officer (or other non-emergency public safety services), please call Prince George's County Public Safety 

Link to zoomable map of Police District VI area

NEW DATE *** Feb 28 Police Chief's Community Forum with Residents of Police District VI


Chief Melvin High

Prince George's County Police Chief's
Community Forum for Police District VI

Beltsville Elementary School
4300 Wicomico Ave
Beltsville, MD

This forum is to facilitate direct dialog between Prince George's County Police Department Chief Melvin High, the new Police District VI Commander, Major Dwayne Preston, District VI police officers, community organizations and all residents in District VI (MAP) (Beltsville, Laurel, Adelphi, Hillandale, Calverton)

For further information contact:

Lt. Michael Straughan
Beltsville Station (District VI)
Station: 301-937-0910

(*) The original event on Feb 20 was rescheduled
because Beltsville Elementary School was closed
due to inclement weather.

There The WSSC Goes Again, AGAIN !!!

Mar 17 Update: Between March 13 and March 16, the excavation was filled with two separate courses of tightly-packed asphalt -- creating a smooth road surface.Feb 17 Update: Late this Sunday morning, WSSC refilled the excavation with fresh asphalt.Feb 15 Update: It is Friday, just before the 3-day Presidents Day
holiday weekend and one week since the excavation was last patched. Predictably, high volume traffic has again turned it into a big pothole (deeper and more jarring than it looks in this photo) that has already thrown at least one hubcap. I called the WSSC maintenance line this morning and asked them to send out a crew to fill the excavation again -- and to refill it once a week, every week, before each weekend until a permanent repair can be made, so as to reduce the risk of more damage to vehicles, personal injury or even death, as even drivers who see the hole risk either being rear-ended as they slow down or head-on collision as they swerve left out of that only west-bound lane across the yellow line into traffic coming at them in the east-bound lane.
Feb 8 Update
At 9:30 AM the WSSC filled the excavation temporarily with uncompressed asphalt. The hole was converted into a bump that cars are now avoiding (when they see it) by swerving to the left into oncoming east-bound traffic. It is unclear if this patch will last over the weekend, or revert again to a hole, as more cars and trucks hit it.

(Feb 7, 2008) For the 3d time in 13 months, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) has again (again) abandoned work in progress on the perpetually problematic fire hydrant near Montpelier Mansion just as one turns onto West-bound Muirkirk Rd from Rt. 197, leaving a dangerous excavation -- this time 3 feet by 3 feet by 8 inches deep (and getting deeper with each passing car) -- without cover plates or warning signs or any other traffic safety measures.

Jan 14, 2007: Citizens Mitigate Dangerous Excavation on Muirkirk
May 19, 2007 WSSC, There They Go Again

And just like those two times before, today's tank trap -- noted at 4:30 pm -- is ALSO in the only west bound lane. So, drivers who are fortunate enough to see it must either slow abruptly -- risking rear collision from cars behind them -- or no less dangerously, they must swerve left into the East-bound land risking head-on collision with opposing traffic. The damage to cars, and danger to drivers and passengers will only get worse as night falls and the tank trap becomes invisible until it is too late. Some cars hit the trap, some swerve into the opposing traffic lane and some do both. I called PG Non-Emergency Public Safety 301-352-1200. Two PG Police vehicle patrol officers responded promptly to evaluate the situation, but it was not clear at that time what WSSC would do.

I drove by again at 7:45 pm and saw that nothing had yet been done to reduce the danger. By that time i was able to call WSSC emergency directly, who took my report about the situation, including my concerns about the risks of personal injury and property damage, and my explicit request that WSSC send someone out immediately to assess the situation and make it as safe as possible overnight.

en → ru

Feb 21 Muirkirk Ironworks Lecture

At a nexus between Beltsville and South Laurel on Muirkirk Road ...

African American

Thursday, Feb 21, 7:30 PM

Gail Thomas discusses the distinctive landscape and architectural structures of the historic Muirkirk Iron Works. With photographs & artifacts, Thomas examines the everyday lives of the African American iron workers and the buildings, churches and social organizations that they created in the historic community of Muirkirk. The discussion will also highlight the interaction between the residents of Muirkirk and the African American community of the grove in Laurel. Thomas is manager of the M-NCPPC's Black History Program. Families welcome.

Laurel Branch 507 7th St.
Laurel, MD 20707

TTY 301-808-2061

Sign language interpreter available upon request. Please contact the branch at least two weeks in advance. Join our email list for program & service updates at www.pgcmls.info

Additional information about Muirkirk and the Muirkirk Iron Works

Laurel Regional Hospital Security

In the wake of the two recent violent inmate escapes from Laurel Regional Hospital -- only two months apart -- i am compiling representative news items as i find them about Laurel Regional Hospital Security in the NEWS FILE section of this South Laurel Blog for community reference now and in future.

Those news items will be listed in the order i post them, not chronologically by date of publication -- the most recently posted items will be at the top of the list. So some earlier published articles will appear at the top of the list followed by some items with more current publication dates.. In any case, each item shows the publication date.