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The Gazette OLNEY


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Pepco sustains push for rate hike

25 cents

Ervin to leave seat in January

Twice as nice on ice


Utility seeks $4.80 per month increase from its average customer




Calling it one of the most difficult decisions she’s ever had to make, Montgomery County Councilwoman Valerie Ervin will leave her seat in early January to take over a New York-based nonprofit that advocates for working families. Ervin (D-Dist. 5) of Silver Spring said Tuesday that she would resign her seat on Jan. 3 to become executive director of the Center for Working Families. “I want to continue to make a difference, in a new way,” Ervin said. No one has been a stronger voice against inequality than Ervin has, County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) said Tuesday at a press conference at the Council Office Building in Rockville. Along with several other speakers, Leggett referenced Ervin’s direct way of dealing with issues. Ervin has been a friend and political supporter, but also one of his most vocal critics when they disagreed, he said. State Sen. Jamie Raskin (DDist. 20) of Silver Spring said he’s also been on both sides of conflicts with Ervin. But he praised her Tuesday for her passion, as well as her dedication to justice and solidarity. “Valerie Ervin is a justice politician,” Raskin said. Council President Craig Rice (D-Dist. 2) of Germantown said Ervin has been like a mother to


See PEPCO, Page A-12



Dickerson power plant makes the move to cleaner energy.




Just months after it was given higher rates and granted Maryland’s first upfront surcharge, Pepco is asking yet again for more from ratepayers. Pepco filed a case with the Maryland Public Service Commission on Dec. 4 for $43.3 million more in base distribution rates, a hike of $4.80 a month on the average customer bill. This is the company’s third rate increase request since 2011. Pepco is seeking the increase to recover the cost of providing service and to give a fair rate of return on capital to its investors. The monopoly utility, which serves 540,000 customers in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties, is asking to increase its allowed rate of return for investors from 9.36 percent to 10.25 percent. Pepco’s request comes less than five months after the Public Service Commission raised the utility’s base rates and broke with precedent to grant it the first tracker, or upfront surcharge, in the state. In July, the PSC granted Pepco $27.9 million of a $60.8 million rate increase request as well as $24 million of a $192 million request for a surcharge. Together, the decision tacked $2.47 a month on the average customer bill starting in July. Disappointing to both Pepco and its opponents, the July ruling is under appeal in Baltimore County Circuit Court. To Pepco’s critics, this latest request for more money is not surprising. Joseph M. Rigby, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Pepco Holdings Inc., told investors in November it would seek another rate hike. “It just seems to be endless,” said Abbe Milstein of Powerupmontco, a listserv for electric utility issues. “There seems to be no finality because the commission has no control here. The utilities are controlling the commission.” Milstein founded Powerupmontco after the June 2012 derecho left her neighborhood in the dark for eight days. If the past is any indication, a large portion of Pepco’s request should be rejected, Del. Heather Mizeur, a 2014 Democratic gubernatorial candidate, said in a

County councilwoman taking position with New York nonprofit


Megan Carbone, 10, (left) and Erin Carmody, 12, both of Olney, stack two tubes to make the ride more exciting down a hill behind Olney Elementary School on Tuesday. Area snow totals fell short of predictions for Tuesday’s storm. See story, Page A-4.

AP test scores see slight drop 2013 marks highest number of exams taken n



Montgomery County students took a record-high number of AP exams but earned a smaller percentage of college-ready scores in 2013 compared to 2012, according to College Board data the school system released Friday.

About 17,000 students took about 33,600 AP exams in spring 2013, marking a 2 percent increase in the number of exams from last year when about 16,800 students took about 32,000 exams. This year’s students earned a score of 3 or higher — or a college-ready score — on about 73 percent of their exams, which is two percentage points lower than last year. The exam takers still slightly outdid their peers from 2011 who earned

college-ready scores on 71.8 percent of their exams. The test is scored on a range from 1 to 5, and a score of 3 or higher indicates a student is qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement. Maryland students overall earned a 3 or higher on about 60.4 percent of their tests and students across the nation earned college-ready scores on about 57 percent of their


Councilwoman Valerie Ervin, who cosponsored legislation that would increase the county’s minimum wage, will lead an organization that advocates for working families.

him since he joined the council in 2010. Rice said he can’t thank her enough for all of the ways she’s helped him be a stronger council member. Councilwoman Nancy Navarro (D-Dist. 4) of Silver Spring, who served with Ervin on the council and on the county’s Board of Education before that, said it was Ervin who first encouraged her to run for the school board. She said she’s happy that Ervin will be going on to another level with the new job. “I cannot think of anyone better than you to lead,” she said. Since the vacancy caused by Ervin’s departure is occurring after Dec. 1 of the year before an election, no special election will be held, County Attorney Marc Hansen said Tuesday. The council will have 30 days to appoint a new member

See ERVIN, Page A-12

“Valerie Ervin is a justice politician.” State Sen. Jamie Raskin (D-Dist. 20) of Silver Spring

See TEST, Page A-12

Supper nets $11K for Brookeville War of 1812 events Money will offset commemoration expenses planned for coming year n



The Madison Supper — part of the town of Brookeville’s celebration of its role in the War of 1812 — raised more than $11,000. The event, organized by town resident Sandra Heiler and her War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission, was held Oct. 27 at the Inn at Brookeville Farms. The Brookeville Town Commission heard the update during its monthly

meeting on Monday. In addition to a period menu, the evening featured a speech by a reenactor portraying President James Madison and a silent auction. Nearly 300 people attended, including Gov. Martin O’Malley. who arrived in period attire, portraying Gen. John Mason. “In addition to the money we raised, it made a lot of people aware of Brookeville,” Heiler, who did not attend the meeting, said during a phone interview. “It was a lot of fun, and I think everyone had a good time.” The money raised will be put into a general fund, most of which will be used for the large culminating event — the War of 1812 commemoration planned for Aug. 30-31, 2014. Heiler


JAGUARS RETURN TOP TALENT Northwest’s indoor track and field teams expect big seasons.


said the expenses will include costumes, visitor services, shuttles and interpreters. Several events are planned leading up to the August event. The Montgomery County Historical Society will include a War of 1812 track at its annual history conference at the Johns Hopkins University Montgomery County Campus in Rockville on Jan. 25. Brookeville will hold its own seminar in March, focusing on the burning of Washington. On May 3, the town will host an historic house tour as another fundraiser, and in June, The White House Historical Society will sponsor a play for local children. A documentary about the events of

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Aug. 26, 1814, is also in the works. Heiler said the town has been awarded several grants to help to pay for the commemoration events. The money raised at the supper and upcoming house tour will help offset additional costs.

Sharing holiday spirit Town residents gathered for the annual holiday party on Dec. 7 at the Brookeville Academy. “The party was another success,” Commission President Michael Acierno said. “The turnout was really good, and people seemed to have a

See SUPPER, Page A-12

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Page A-2

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

PEOPLE& PLACES More online at

Sherwood Poms raise money for cancer project For its service project this year, the Sherwood High School Pom Squad teamed up with the MGH Health Foundation to raise $1,115 for MedStar Montgomery Medical Center’s Capital Campaign for Oncology. “Raising money for this campaign is the greatest thing our team has done for our community,” said Bailey Greseth, senior captain of the Olney school squad. “We feel so gracious to be a part of something so incredible.” The $4 million campaign will help fund the renovation of the radiation therapy center, with the purchase of new equipment, as well as the expansion of support services, preventive programs and community outreach. “After touring the hospital’s cancer treatment facilities, it made me want to do what I could to help make this new technology available to my family members, neighbors and friends,” said Abby Snyder, a junior officer of the squad. Her family’s involvement in the campaign inspired her to get the squad involved. The team launched its initiative at Back to School Night in September, displaying posters and handing out informational fliers. The girls continued to raise money by selling raffle tickets at home football games. During October, they performed with pink pom-poms and wore pink hair ribbons to promote Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Coach Jeanne Laeng said the girls have been committed to the greater good of this project. “They have educated themselves about every aspect of the campaign, all so they can have intelligent conversations with adults who are curious and to the


generous donors,” Laeng said. “The crowds at our fundraising events were so impressed with the girls’ knowledge and passion for the subject.” The squad hosted a Pom Day Camp on Nov. 9. The captains and senior members presented information about the campaign, offering opportunities for parents to get involved. The girls plan to repeat this fundraiser May 10. “It is our mission that in any place, at any time, we will be leaders for not only our fellow teammates, but for our fans, competitors, community and those less fortunate,” Laeng said. “We will better the lives of others through what we do and how we behave.” “I think our biggest achievement thus far has been to help spread awareness about the campaign to hundreds of community members; it feels good to be able to help those affected by cancer in our Olney community,” Snyder said. “I would encourage other schools to get involved in this campaign because it gives you the opportunity to make a difference and maybe even save a life.” To learn more or to make a donation, visit or contact the foundation at 301774-8777 or healthfoundation@

Fire department hosts breakfast, tree sale The Laytonsville District Volunteer Fire Department will host a breakfast with Santa from 8 a.m. to


Northwest’s E.J. Lee makes a catch under pressure from Suitland’s Anthony Jackson during the 4A state championship game. Go to



Holiday Pop-Up, 6-9 p.m., The

Singer Songwriter Series: Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion, 3

Blairs East Club Room, 1220 East-West Highway, Silver Spring.

p.m., Kentlands Mansion, 320 Kent Square Road, Gaithersburg. $25 for concert, $45 for concert and workshop. stakahashi@gaithersburgmd. gov.


THURSDAY, DEC. 12 Autism Workshop, 6-7:30 p.m., The

Maryland Zoo: Living Places, Living Planet, 11 a.m.-noon, White Oak

Treatment and Learning Centers, 2092 Gaither Road, Rockville. $25. 301-4245200, ext. 6923. Winter Art and Music Festival, 6-9 p.m., Wheaton High School, 12601 Dalewood Drive, Silver Spring. Free. patricia_a_broda@

Library, 11701 New Hampshire Ave., Silver Spring. Free. 240-773-9555. Open House, 1-3 p.m., House with A Heart Senior Dog Sanctuary, 6409 Stream Valley Way, Gaithersburg. Free. 240-631-1743.

Glorystar Children’s Chorus Winter Concert, 2-3:45 p.m., Chinese

Gaithersburg Fine Arts Association Meeting, 6:30-9 p.m., Stedwick Com-

Bible Church of Maryland, 4414 Muncaster Mill Road, Rockville. $12 for adults, $5 for seniors and students, free for age 12 and under. 240-277-7629.

munity Center, 10401 Stedwick Road, Montgomery Village.

For more on your community, visit

ter’s Capital Campaign for Oncology.

noon Sunday. The menu includes pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, home fries, chipped beef, baked apples, biscuits, juice and coffee. The cost is $8 for adults, $5 for children 5-11, and those younger eat free. The fire station is at 21400 Laytonsville Road. The department also is selling Christmas trees on Laytonsville Road and Howard Street across from Atco Tire. Fraser and Douglas firs from 6 to 8 feet tall are available, along with wreaths, from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekends. Proceeds from the breakfast and sale benefit the department’s building fund. For more information, call 240-304-1332 or go to



Muslim groups launch winter clothing drive The Maryland chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, in partnership with Project Affinity and the Islamic Society of Annapolis, recently launched a winter clothing drive for the homeless as part of its Faith in Action campaign. It is a statewide project with drop-off locations in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. Accepted are new or gently used coats, gloves, hats, scarves and sweaters. Drop-off locations are at 15200 New Hampshire Ave. and 2701 Briggs Chaney Road, both in Silver Spring, and 7306 Contee Road, Laurel.

MONDAY, DEC. 16 Where and How To Get Financing, 9-11:30 a.m., Wheaton Business Innovation Center, 11002 Viers Mill Road, Suite 700, Wheaton. $50. 301-403-0501.

Breakfast With Santa, 8 a.m.-noon,

Laytonsville Fire Department, 21400 Laytonsville Road, Laytonsville. $8 for adults, $5 ages 5-11, free age 5 and younger. 240-304-1332.

ConsumerWatch If you have an all-electric home, do you still need a carbon monoxide detector? To be safe, let’s turn to Liz for our answer.


WeekendWeather FRIDAY




Winter Blues: Balancing Sorrow and Celebration While Grieving, 1-2:30

p.m., Montgomery Hospice, 1355 Piccard Drive, Rockville. Free. 301921-4400.

MORE INTERACTIVE CALENDAR ITEMS AT WWW.GAZETTE.NET 3:30 p.m., Sherwood High School, 300 Olney-Sandy Spring Road, Sandy Spring. Free. 202-767-4310.

SUNDAY, DEC. 15 Holiday Open House Children’s Day, 1-4 p.m., Glenview Mansion, 603

Edmonston Drive, Rockville. 240-3148660. Holiday in the Mansion, 3 p.m., Kentlands Mansion, 320 Kent Square Road, Gaithersburg. $25. 301-2586394.

Montgomery Philharmonic Concert, 7 p.m., Gaithersburg Presbyterian

Church, 610 S. Frederick Ave., Gaithersburg. Free. 240-398-8870.

5th annual Original Tuesday Networking Extravaganza and Toys For Tots Drive, 4-8 p.m., Norbeck Country

Club, 12799 Cashell Road, Rockville. Bring a new, unwrapped toy. 301-8797873.

Mobile Download the Gazette.Net mobile app

GAZETTE CONTACTS The Gazette – 9030 Comprint Court Gaithersburg, MD 20877 Main phone: 301-948-3120 Circulation: 301-670-7350

Civic building, 1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring. Free. 240-499-4392.

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 18 Mother’s Morning Out, 9:30 a.m.-

DEATHS Edward Thomas Blongiewicz

noon, Faith Presbyterian Church, 17309 Old Baltimore Road, Olney. Free babysitting.

Edward Thomas Blongiewicz, 70, died Nov. 29, 2013, in Gaithersburg. A private memorial service will be held in Philadelphia.


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Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page A-3


Tickets draw scrutiny for new council president

Frosty fun

Report errs that Rice’s license was suspended



County Council President Craig Rice is facing scrutiny for his driving and parking habits. On Friday, a local watchdog blog posted a notice saying that the Montgomery County District Court advised the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration to suspend Rice’s license after he failed to appear for a speeding ticket court date. When contacted by The Gazette, Rice said that he missed his Nov. 7 court date because of an event in Gaithersburg he was participating in called 100,000 Homes for the Homeless. Bymissingthecourtdate,Rice (D-Dist. 2) of Germantown said he was unable to argue against the $90 ticket, which he ended up paying online last month. “It’s already been paid,” he

Above, Audrey Milner of Sandy Spring takes a picture of her son, Abay Milner, 5, with Santa during the Frosty and Friends holiday event at the Sandy Spring Museum. At right, Susan Harder and her daughter Juliet, 2½, of Olney, watch model trains during the event.



A Silver Spring man was sentenced Monday to 11 years in federal prison on drug conspiracy and money laundering charges. According to federal prosecutors, Mikhnail DelRosario, 28, conspired to distribute from 700 to 1,000 kilograms of marijuana and to commit money laundering. “We’re not thrilled, but it was much, much, less than what the government asked for,” said Mirriam Z. Seddiq, DelRosario’s attorney. Prosecutors had asked for a sentence of just more than 13 years, she said. DelRosario, one of 10 people who have been convicted and sentenced for their involvement in the drug trafficking and money laundering scheme, also will have to serve four years of probation and forfeit more than $1 million believed to be the proceeds of the conspiracies, according to spokesmen

Pepco is doing utility work along Md. 108 in Sandy Spring, which could result in delays for area motorists. The lane closures are a result of Pepco’s “reliability enhancement” work, being performed throughout the system. “We are performing extensive work on the system necessary to improve reliability,” a Pepco statement says. “The work is scheduled to be completed by the end of the first

an email. The State Highway Administration issued the permit for Pepco to do the work, because Md. 108 (Olney-Sandy Spring Road) is a state road. SHA spokesman David Buck said Pepco’s overhead and underground work requires trenching of the roadway, which is scheduled to be performed between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. weekdays. Once the work is completed, Pepco would be required to resurface the road to meet SHA standards, Buck said. Final resurfacing could be delayed until temperatures rise.


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juana for just $55. “He’s not this lifetime career criminal — he’s a young guy,” she said, adding that DelRosario had always held a job and helped his family financially. The alleged traffickers tried to launder their proceeds, according to the release. One of the traffickers spread the money in multiple bank accounts, each below $10,000, the threshold at which banks must report transactions, according to the release. Mancilla-Brevichet, 28, of Oakland, Calif., was sentenced to 8½ years in prison, and must forfeit more than $200,000. Thach, 30, of Silver Spring, received an eight-year sentence and Escobar, 30, of Arlington, Va., was sentenced to three years for their role in the drug ring. Six other conspirators pleaded guilty and received four- to 6½-year sentences, according to prosecutors. John Michael McKenna, Mancilla-Brevichet’s attorney, declined to comment on the sentencing. Neither Harry D. McKnett, Thach’s attorney, nor Michael E. Lawlor, Escobar’s attorney, could be reached for comment.


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from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Maryland. Prosecutors said in a statement that from March 2011 to December 2012, DelRosario worked with Billymir MancillaBrevichet, Chamron Thach and Carlos S. Escobar, distributing marijuana in and around Montgomery County. Investigators listened to more than 75 wiretapped phone conversations he had with two other alleged drug traffickers regarding drug sales. Over the course of the time federal officials were investigating him, DelRosario and others received 2- to 4-pound packages of marijuana two or three times a month sent from California by plane, car and mail, according to the statement detailing his sentencing. DelRosario paid from $3,000 to 4,000 per pound for the marijuana. Seddiq called DelRosario a young man who had fallen under the “allure” of easy money. According to Seddiq, prosecutors had pressed for DelRosario to be sentenced under a specific statute for criminals with prior drug convictions. She argued against that, saying that one of his two previous convictions was a very minor one, for selling a small amount of mari-

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quarter of 2014, barring any unforeseen circumstances.” Pepco spokesman Bob Hainey said the project involves replacing and upgrading wires, poles and transformers, and installing additional switching equipment. Olney resident Sharon Dooley reported experiencing multiple delays between Sherwood Elementary and Sherwood High School each day while commuting to Howard County, as only one lane of traffic gets around several construction sites. “At first, I thought it was a water main break that would be fixed, but this goes on for several blocks with many separate excavations,” she wrote in



‘He’s not a drug kingpin,’ says defense attorney BY ST. JOHN BARNED-SMITH

Pepco’s utility work snarls Md. 108 Work could continue through early spring

ton, D.C., and Annapolis. Neil Greenberger, a County Council spokesman, said Tuesday that the councilman had received several of the tickets on a car he had been leasing. Notices of the tickets were mailed to Rice’s leasing company, Greenberger said. “He does not recall getting the notices,” Greenberger said. Rice called his leasing company Monday to verify the different tickets, Greenberger said. “When he found out they did exist, he then paid them immediately,” he said. Online records for D.C. and both Maryland counties showed that Rice did not have any outstanding balances for parking tickets on two cars he has leased in the past. On Tuesday, Rice said questions about the parking tickets date back several years and that previous publications and news outlets had erred in their reporting and mixed up facts.

Man gets 11 years on drug charges



said of the ticket, which he incurred Sept. 9 on I-270 near the Falls Road exit for driving in the HOV lane. Rice said he had been using the lane to pass another motorist. MVA spokesman Buel Young said Rice has a valid driver’s license, and that earlier reports that the Montgomery County District Court had advised that Rice’s driving license be suspended were incorrect. Instead, Rice would have received a letter notifying him of his failure to appear and advising him to pay the ticket fee, or face having his license suspended, Young said. Court records show that Rice has had three other speeding tickets in Montgomery County since 2011. Those have all been adjudicated. On the heels of that story, WJLA reported Monday that Rice had more than $1,000 in unpaid tickets and citations, citing the traffic ticket in Montgomery County as well as parking tickets and other violations in Washing-

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Leggett: Interim fire chief should stay Lohr has filled in since May; appointment requires council vote n


Steve Lohr has dealt with tricky situations in the course of his career as a Montgomery County firefighter, from fighting multi-home fires on hot summer days to helping deliver babies — he’s done that four times. Now he is preparing for a new challenge: County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) has decided on Lohr as the next fire chief, subject to the County Council’s approval. Lohr, 58, became interim chief of the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service in May after then-Chief Richard Bowers resigned and became fire chief in Fairfax County, Va. Bowers was listed in a 2013 county employee database as having a salary of $190,000 as chief. Lohr, who joined the department in 1985, has a current salary is $155,703 as head of the operations division, according to the database. “I’m thrilled,” Lohr said. “I feel like I’ve been prepping for this all my life.” The council might vote to confirm Lohr after the holiday recess, county officials said. In a release announcing the news on Dec. 4, Leggett called Lohr a “highly regarded leader” in fire and rescue services. Lohr has been a firefighter since 1971, when he joined a volunteer fire department in Washington County, he said. He later moved to Montgomery County. Before joining the fire service as a career firefighter, he was a volunteer firefighter at two local stations, in Silver Spring and Gaithersburg, he said. Lohr said he would work to meet the new challenges of his job and the evolving public safety challenges in Montgomery County, including serving an aging population and keeping his agency properly staffed. He also wants to maintain good relationships with other local and national agencies and make sure the county’s fire stations have necessary equipment. One specific challenge that the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service will face is the increasing number of baby boomers, who need more care as they age, he said. “We will need to be able to meet that demand,” he said. The service also will focus on making sure heart attack victims receive emergency care as soon as possible, he said. The department works to ensure that cardiac care at a hospital is available within 90 minutes of a 911 call. In the last three months, firefighters hit that benchmark 41 out of 42 times, he said.

Area snowfall totals fall short n

Forecast shows temperatures around the region will remain low Wednesday BY JESSICA


After the region braced for a second round of wintery weather in a week Tuesday, officials at the National Weather Service said snowfall accumulation totals came in lower than expected. An earlier winter storm warning issued by the weather service was in effect for Montgomery, Prince George’s and Fairfax counties until 2 p.m. Tuesday. Accumulation was thought to reach anywhere from 4 to 6 inches; however, totals in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties varied from 1 to 3 inches, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Dan Hofmann. Hofmann said the highest totals in that range were reported in the northwestern part of Montgomery County. The forecast Wednesday should bring sunshine to the region, but temperatures will struggle to make it above the freezing mark, he said. Residents can report streets that need plowing and check snowplow progress at Montgomery County Police Cpt. Paul Starks said there were no major collisions reported on county roads Tuesday and that all roads remained open throughout the day. He said the closure of the federal government and schools and liberal leave policy of local governments most likely attributed to the small number of minor accidents. Officials with the Montgomery County Department of Transportation were unavailable to comment on road conditions. The first round of the storm initially left thousands of people without power, but many were restored by


Anthony Santos, 8, (left) and Herbert Mollinedo, 11, have a snowball fight with Anthony’s dad, Chris Santos, in front of their home on Ram’s Head Court in Olney.

Tuesday afternoon. According to their websites, as of 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Pepco reported 23 customers out in Montgomery and less than five in Prince George’s; BGE reported no customers without power in Montgomery and fewer than five in Prince George’s; and in Virginia, Dominion reported 4,090 customers out in Fairfax County and another 300 in Fairfax City.

Dickerson plant to stop using coal n

Looming state regulations could be cost-prohibitive BY


The owner of a coal-fired power plant in Dickerson plans to stop using coal to generate electricity at two of its Maryland plants. NRG Energy, owner of the Dickerson Generating Station in Montgomery County and the Chalk Point Generating Station in Prince George’s County, said it plans to “deactivate” the coal-fired units at both plants by June 2017. Both plants produce electricity using a mix of coal, oil and natural gas. NRG sent notice of its plans to regional grid operator PJM Interconnector on Dec. 2, ahead of a capacity auction scheduled for May, PJM spokesman Ray Dotter said. Each year PJM auctions the rates it will pay generators for being available if and when called on to produce power. Dotter, unable to speak specifically about the notice given by NRG due to confidentiality, said a power company must notify PJM when it wants to retire or deactivate a plant. Notices like the one NRG gave typically indicate that the owner expects to and likely will shut down and not operate the plant, he said. However, NRG could change its mind or even revise its plans to expedite closure, Dotter said. NRG East Region spokesman David Gaier said looming state regulations for coal-fired plant emissions precipitated the company issuing the notice. Gaier said the regulations will likely require NRG to install expensive upgrades for processing emissions. “The significant capital investment required to install these systems can’t be justified economically,” he said. The Dickerson plant is capable of generating about 849 net megawatts, according to the NRG website. Gaier said the plant, which employs about 200 people, produces 546 megawatts from coal. Maryland Department of the Environment spokeswoman Samantha Kappalman said talks have only just


Owners of the Dickerson Generating Station in Montgomery County say they plan to stop using coal to generate electricty at the plant in Dickerson. The Dickerson station along with the Chalk Point Generating Station in Prince George’s County both use a mix of coal, oil and natural gas to produce electricity. begun on the regulations, which are part of Maryland’s Healthy Air Act, the toughest power plant emission law on the East Coast. When the regulations will go into effect remains unknown, she said. As the state drafts its regulations for emissions from power plants, it has joined with seven other states to call on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to crack down on pollution in states that are upwind. About 70 percent of Maryland’s air pollution comes from other states, Kappalman said. On Monday, Maryland and seven other states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic petitioned the federal government to require upwind states — Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia — to be good neighbors and reduce emissions. Across the country, coal plants are shutting down, said Diana Dascalu-Joffe, senior attorney for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. Environmental advocates are confident that NRG will cease using coal at the two Maryland plants by its 2017 deadline and contribute to efforts to move Maryland to a cleaner energy portfolio. “We are applauding NRG’s commitment and intention,” Dascalu-Joffe said. “By putting in the decommissioning proposal, they’ve

basically said to PJM, ‘Look, this is the direction we want to go in. We want to decommission coal, we want to move toward more clean energy.’” But before NRG can stop using coal, the grid operator must study if the grid can handle the loss. Dotter said PJM has 90 days to evaluate the impact the closure would have on the grid and determine if upgrades are necessary before the plant can shut down its coal units. PJM can request a plant remain open longer to ensure any necessary upgrades are made and the system avoid sdisruption, but because NRG has given about three years of notice, any upgrades will likely fit in their window for closure, Dotter said. Dickerson, which first went online in 1959, is one of seven plants in Maryland that still use coal to produce energy, according to the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. Gaier said any action that NRG takes could potentially affect jobs at the plants. But he added that the company has not yet made a firm decision on ceasing coal operations and will continue to evaluate its options between now and May. Exactly how many of the 200 jobs would be impacted he did not say. Staff Writer Sylvia Carignan contributed to this report.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o


Santa Claus is coming to town Look for Santa, escorted by the Sandy Spring Volunteer Fire Department, to visit Olney-area neighborhoods from 5:30 to 9 p.m. the following days: • Dec. 18: Manor Oaks, Goldmine Crossing, Dellabrooke Forest, town of Brookeville, Bordley Estates, Brinklow, Ashton north and west, Sandy Spring, Orchards of Sandy Spring, Bancroft, Arden Woods. • Dec. 19: Williamsburg Village, Cashell Manor, Barnsley Manor Estates, Norbeck Grove, Oatlands, Olney Oaks, Olney Acres, Briars Acres. • Dec. 20: Olney Mill, Brookeville Knolls, Tanterra, Olney Village. • Dec. 21: Victoria Springs, Brooke Manor, the Preserve, Sycamore Acres, Norbeck Manor, Norbeck Meadows, Cherrywood, Cherry Valley. • Dec. 22: Ashton Meadow, Ashton Manor, Ednor Acres, Cliftonbrooke, Ashton Preserve, Hampshire Greens, Llewellyn Fields, Norwood Village, Ashley Manor. • Dec. 23: James Creek, Brooke Grove, Environ, Hallowell, Olney Estates, Lake Hallowell, Highlands of Olney. Chief Mike Kelley said three neighborhoods have been added this year. He reminded residents that Santa cannot travel down streets blocked by vehicles and cannot visit streets without a place for the vehicles to turn around. More information is at

Fire department honors members, auxiliary Michael Valente, president of the Sandy Spring Volunteer Fire Department, announced the following awards for 2013, which were presented at a recent banquet. • Officer of the Year: Capt. Nancy Thornton, Sandy Spring, and Capt. Bruce Gibbs, Montgomery County. • Firefighter of the Year: Firefighter III Philip Smith, Sandy Spring, and Master Firefighter Steven Pifer, Montgomery County. • Bruce E. Newcomer Memorial Emergency Medical Services Award: Kelly Robinson. • Junior Member of the Year: Sean Musgrove. • Spencer J. H. Brown Sr. Outstanding Service Award: George W. Brown Jr. • Life Membership: Mark Himes. • Chief’s Award: Firefighter III Brendan Bonita. • President’s Awards: John Lindner, Jennifer Musgrove, Michael Thornton. • Top 10 responders, in ascending order: Smith, Robinson, Jennifer Soda, Brian Park, Jacqueline Earp, Bonita, Thomas Gordon, Mark Himes, Brown, Eli Fuhrman. • Length of service: Glenn Bailey, Lea Gilpin, 55 years; Rodney Musgrove, 50 years; Vernon Lewis, Samuel McClung, 45 years; Philip Hines, 35 years; Richard Boggs, 25 years; Constance Brown, Paul Brubacher, Stephen Lichtman, 20 years; David Baker, Carrick Robertson, Thornton, 15 years; William Seggel, 10 years. Awards also were presented to the department’s Auxiliary members. • Sarah Dantz Award: Roseanne Fones. • Lifetime Achievement Award: Deborah Cullen. • Life Membership: James Mills. • Length of service: Constance McKain, 50 years; Eric Roth, 15 years; Donna Haviland, James Mills, Kathy Mills, Patricia Sandrus, 10 years. In other department news, Bonita was promoted to fire-rescue lieutenant.


Complete report at The following is a summary of incidents in the Olney area to which Montgomery County police responded recently. The words “arrested” and “charged” do not imply guilt. This information was provided by the county.

Armed robbery • On Nov. 22 at 9:50 p.m. in the 12600 block of Layhill Road, Silver Spring. The subject threatened the victim with a weapon and took property. Strong-arm robbery • On Nov. 21 at 7:45 a.m. in the 14800 block of Melfordshire Way, Silver Spring. The subjects assaulted the victim and took property. Assault • On Nov. 24 at 2:18 a.m. near the rear of La Antigua Restaurant, 11260 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring. Burglary • On Nov. 24 at 3:30 p.m. at Wheaton Woods Elementary School, 4510 Faroe Place, Rockville. Forced entry, took nothing. Residential burglary • 12200 block of Valleywood Drive, Silver Spring, at 1:56 a.m. Nov. 18. Attempted forced entry, took nothing. • 400 block of Woonsocket Lane, Silver Spring, between Nov. 20 and 22. Took two bicycles from an unlocked garage.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

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Candidate Bongino heads Teachers back incumbents to Potomac to raise money Union will interview candidates running for open seats in January n

Republican tries to distance himself from tea party label n





Congressional candidate Dan Bongino stood at the front of the crowded room, as listeners nodded in agreement with many points he made. Bongino, who’s seeking the Republican nomination for Maryland’s 6th District seat, stopped at the large, wellappointed home in Potomac on Dec. 3 to raise campaign money. Bongino shook hands and chatted with more than 90 donors who had come to meet him. As of Tuesday, the event had generated $19,550, with checks and financial commitments continuing to come in, spokeswoman Karla Graham said. Bongino, a former Secret Service agent who lives in Severna Park, said he and his wife are looking to move into the 6th District as soon as possible. He said he understands the argument that a candidate needs to run in the congressional district where he lives to be more ideologically aligned with the voters there. But he also argued that first-term Rep. John Delaney (D) of Potomac is “light years away” from the values of most voters in the district, which stretches from the Washington suburbs of southern Montgomery County to the mountains of Garrett County. When he was elected, Delaney said his top priority was increasing America’s competitiveness in the global market to help create jobs. His platform included creating an infrastructure bank to invest in communications, transportation and energy; instituting a federal carbon tax; implementing congressional term limits; and preserving the Affordable Care Act. Delaney doesn’t live in the 6th District, either; his house is less than a half-mile from the district line after it was redrawn in 2011. According to the U.S. Constitution, members of Congress must live in the state, but not the district, they represent. David E. Vogt III of Frederick County, a Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan, also is running in the GOP primary in June. In the front hallway of Arlene Hillerson’s Potomac home, a table was set up where people could buy copies of Bongino’s book “Life Inside the Bubble,” about his time in the Secret Service and his decision to leave the agency and run an unsuccessful challenge against Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin (D) of Pikesville in 2012. The book was listed on Thursday No. 13 on The New York Times’ list of bestselling e-books, but has since fallen out of the top 25. Writing the book was a delicate matter for him, because he didn’t want to damage the agency’s relationship with the president, Bongino said. The main speaker on Dec. 3 was Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert (R), who addressed the crowd in front of a large stone fireplace with a yellow “Bongino for Congress” banner. He said Bongino would guest host Sean Hannity’s radio show on Dec. 23, drawing an approving chorus of applause. Gohmert, a regular guest himself on conservative radio and television shows, defended the Republicans’ decision to push to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which led to a threeweek government shutdown in October. Gohmert asked: If you know that’s what is best for the country, why wouldn’t you try to do it? Maryland needs Bongino in Congress, Gohmert said. “Could we possibly do better than someone who’s willing to take a bullet for his country?” he said. While he’s often associated with the tea party movement,



Congressional candidate Dan Bongino addresses attendees at a campaign fundraiser on Dec. 3 in Potomac. Bongino said he doesn’t like to get into the semantics of who is in the tea party and who isn’t. He said he views the tea party as normal Americans tired of paying more in taxes. He has nearly 42,000 “likes” on his Facebook page, and said a good portion of them identify themselves as Democrats.

Bongino said people want candidates who can take the edge off rhetoric while staying true to their principles. “Don’t let anyone pigeonhole you as the angry Republican,” he said.

The Montgomery County Education Association announced Friday that it is endorsing 24 Maryland General Assembly incumbents running for re-election from the county. The union said in a statement that each candidate “has a strong record as an advocate for public education.” The teachers union did not include recommendations for open seats in the General Assembly. The union is scheduled to interview candidates running for open seats in January. Several state legislators are running for different positions next year, opening up seats for challengers. Some are not running again. Del. Susan C. Lee (D-Dist. 16) and Del. Luiz R.S. Simmons (D-Dist. 17) are both running for Senate positions. Del. C. William Frick (DDist. 16) and Sen. Brian E. Frosh (D-Dist. 16) are both running for attorney general. Del. Heather Mizeur (D-Dist. 20) is running for governor. Del. Sam Arora (D-Dist. 19)


The union’s support for General Assembly incumbents includes:

Sen. Karen S. Montgomery (Dist. 14)

Del. Alfred C. Carr Jr. (Dist. 18)

Del. Anne R. Kaiser (Dist. 14)

Del. Jeff Waldstreicher (Dist. 18)

Del. Eric Luedtke (Dist. 14) Del. Craig J. Zucker (Dist. 14) Sen. Brian J. Feldman (Dist. 15) Del. Kathleen M. Dumais (Dist. 15) Del. Aruna Miller (Dist. 15) Del. Ariana Kelly (Dist. 16) Del. Kumar P. Barve (Dist. 17) Del. James Gilchrist (Dist. 17) Sen. Richard S. Madaleno (Dist. 18)

is not running for re-election and Sen. Jennie M. Forehand (D-Dist. 17) had not announced her plans as of this week. Doug Prouty, the union’s president, said the pool of candidates vying for the General Assembly’s seats that will be vacant is “very interesting.” “I’m very pleased with the folks we have running for open seats right now,” Prouty said. “As a group of folks, they seem to be engaged in learning about the school system and very supportive of the school system.” Prouty said he would like to see the open-seat candidates

Del. Ana Sol Gutiérrez (Dist. 18) Sen. Roger Manno (Dist. 19) Del. Bonnie Cullison (Dist. 19) Del. Benjamin F. Kramer (Dist. 19) Sen. Jamie B. Raskin (Dist. 20) Del. Sheila Ellis Hixson (Dist. 20) Del. Tom Hucker (Dist. 20) Sen. Nancy J. King (Dist. 39) Del. Charles E. Barkley (Dist. 39) Del. Kirill Reznik (Dist. 39) Del. Shane Robinson (Dist. 39)

learn more about evaluations of and support for teachers and principals in the county’s professional growth system. The system is important for the candidates to understand, Prouty said, because it has been an “ongoing discussion” the union has had with legislators and state education officials. Prouty said one thing the union hopes the incumbents highlight in their campaigns is the county’s need for more school construction money from the state.


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Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Meditation Museum targets the mind, soul and spirit Free sessions aim to help participants enhance quality of life n



The Meditation Museum is unique in Silver Spring. Visitors say it renews the soul, clears the mind and relaxes the body. Students talk about getting spiritual help while enhancing the quality of their thoughts. They also get to meet Sister Jenna, as she is called, the director and founder. “The audience that we have are individuals that are soul searching. They want to be better people. They are stuck — perhaps overwhelmed or even just curious,” Sister Jenna said during an interview. The museum, at 8236 Georgia Ave., is open to people practicing any religion. All are welcome, she said. Visitors to the museum, which has been open since 2009, can find free classes on meditation. They can join in workshops about busy people, the purpose of the soul, spirituality and growing up, world peace and more. The museum offers presenters, discussions and sessions on how to silence the mind. “We have to make the personal choice to change some of our own limitations, and I think one of the misconceptions of meditation is that a lot of us in America ... we thought that meditation was sitting down



At left, Sister Gita of Silver Spring leads a meditation workshop Friday at the Meditation Museum in Silver Spring. Above, Santosh Peraboina (right) of Silver Spring was among those attending the workshop. and being quiet and emptying the mind,” Sister Jenna said. When meditation was brought to the West, she said, people left behind a particular component, which was to teach students how to “understand the mechanisms of your thoughts, but also of your feelings and how you perform actions based on your thoughts and your feelings and creating an experience in here.” She said the museum is a nonprofit with free training sessions funded by private donations. Regular students volunteer their time. It has artwork in every room, including sculptures and paintings, plus a Tree of Blessings,

where people can share blessings or just give thanks. The museum also has a quiet room, where visitors meditate as long as they wish. In June 2012, the Meditation Museum organized the America Meditating initiative for Dadi Prakashmani Day, which honored a spiritual leader. According to Sister Jenna’s official biography, the initiative promotes awareness of personal empowerment and peace to increase harmony and a more vibrant America. She has devoted more than 20 years to meditation and relaxation techniques. She is the director of the Washington, D.C., branch of Brahma Kumaris, a

worldwide organization with more than 8,000 branches in 120 countries. Kathy Satterley of Silver Spring, a certified life coach, met Sister Jenna in Miami and became intrigued with meditation. She was invited to lecture at workshops and found out there were many opportunities to serve people looking for empowerment and improvement in their lives. “We are all lifelong learners over here. We are constantly learning from each other,” Satterley said. Volunteers said first-time visitors have reported feeling peace when walking through the door and workshops often can generate emotions, leading people to identify the feelings they need to heal. “When people come in to the space, immediately they feel a sense of peace and calm. ... You come in here and it is a very


peaceful and steady vibration because everybody that’s here is really working on themselves,” Satterley said. Others have found in the museum the life answers they were looking for. Diamond Thorne, a real estate agent, said someone told her years ago that she needed meditation, but she never gave much attention to it. Then came a point in her life when, she said, “I was confused, really confused.” Thorne was attending a church in Takoma Park, but believed she was not getting the answers she was looking for — until one church member told her to visit the Silver Spring Meditation Museum. Thorne has been visiting the museum for almost three years and says it has changed her life. “I’ve been living for a long time and I had some answered questions like, ‘What was really

going on?’” Thorne said. Khelan Dattani of Arlington Va., who works in the fast-paced financial industry, said that through positive thinking, people can change how they think about things. The meditation museum is not meant to be a place where people just sit and find peace. Dattani said the key is to find the right balance to find peace at home or work and come from that peace in actions. “That’s the training [and] that’s the study to really think about, what it is that is triggering my emotions,” Dattani said. Sister Jenna said that even politicians and corporate executives visit the museum to seek clarity on what to do next. “When the government shut down, a lot of people came as to find solace and to figure out what they should do,” she said.


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On Newtown anniversary, legislators eye gun law changes BY


One year after 20 students and six adults lost their lives in the mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Maryland operates under a new gun law aimed at stemming the tide of gun violence within its borders. “We experience a Newtown every day in the U.S.,” state Sen. Brian E. Frosh said. “There are 25 to 30 killings by firearms every single day, it’s just not all in one place.” Gun violence is a serious public health issue, said Frosh (D-Dist. 16) of Chevy Chase, a 2014 Democratic candidate for attorney general, and Senate leader on the gun law that passed in 2013. But he said it took the deadly shootings of schoolchildren last December to galvanize the public and lawmakers behind the Firearms Safety Act of 2013. The new law, supported by Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and adopted by the General Assembly early this year, requires background checks, fingerprinting, training and a licensing fee for everyone purchasing regulated firearms — a category that includes handguns but not shotguns or hunting rifles. The law also bans about 40 semi-automatic rifles deemed to be “assault weapons” and magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition. It also restricts gun ownership by certain people with a history of mental illness. The Firearms Safety Act of 2013 took effect Oct. 1. Time will tell if the changes actually save lives and prevent a massacre in Maryland. Opponents, however, say the law missed the mark. “I think Maryland did nothing whatsoever to curb gun violence,” said Del. Michael D. Smigiel Sr. “All we did was attempt to make criminals out of law-abiding citizens.” Smigiel (R-Dist. 36) of Chesapeake City called the law “tyranny” that fails to actually punish “bad guys with guns.” As just one example, Smigiel said the law allows residents to buy banned weapons out of state and bring those weapons into Maryland but it prevents visitors with permits to carry a concealed weapon in other states from carrying in Maryland. “The law is just feel-good legislation that really just complicates the matter for law-abiding Marylanders,” Smigiel said. “I don’t think anybody can point to any aspect of that law and show where any portion of it made people safer.” Vincent DeMarco, president of Marylanders to Prevent Gun Violence, is confident lives will be saved, particularly by the fingerprint licensing. “It’s going to prevent people from lying about who they are, and it’s going to deter people from buying guns who are criminals,” DeMarco said. “It’s a really good strategy for reducing gun violence.” A 2013 study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for Gun Policy and Research found that once implemented, Maryland’s law would reduce gun trafficking, gun crime and gun homicides. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence ranked Maryland fourth in the nation for best gun laws and gave it a grade of A based on thirty policy areas, including background checks and access of dangerous persons to weapons. “We know from other states that these laws work,” DeMarco said. But in Maryland, Smigiel said the licensing requirement has an already backlogged Maryland State Police unable to meet the law’s mandate that it only take seven days to process background checks. At present, he said police are taking as long as 120 days to process background checks. If gun

shop owners were allowed to do those checks, it would take mere seconds, he said. State police did not respond to multiple requests for comment. Maryland’s new law allows residents who owned assault weapons or magazines over 10 rounds before Oct. 1 to keep those weapons. As a result, thousands of Marylanders flocked to buy guns in the months between passage and Oct. 1. Maryland had more purchases of guns in the first nine months of 2013 than in the prior year and half, Del. Luiz R.S. Simmons said. Simmons, while a supporter of the bill, is critical of many of its provisions. “There was literally a tidal wave of gun purchases in Maryland,” Simmons (D-Dist. 17) of Rockville said. “I believe Maryland is armed to the teeth and I do not believe the governor’s bill went far enough.” Simmons is a candidate for the District 17 state Senate seat. “What this law did was [create] a buying frenzy,” Del. John W.E. Cluster Jr. said. “Maryland put 100,000 more guns on the street by this law.” Cluster (R-Dist. 8) of Parkville, a retired police sergeant, said he knows residents who bought assault weapons for no other reason than the coming ban. “I do not know the solution to gun violence. We will always have gun violence. It is always going to happen,” he said.


“There was literally a tidal wave of gun purchases in Maryland. I believe Maryland is armed to the teeth and I do not believe the governor’s bill went far enough.” Del. Luiz R.S. Simmons (D-Dist. 17) of Rockville One solution might be to make it easier for residents who want to carry a weapon to do so, he said. Cluster is one of a few lawmakers who do not feel the 2013 law ends the gun debate. He has filed a bill for 2014 that would place an armed safety resource officer in every Maryland school in an effort to protect students should a shooting like Sandy Hook happen here. A December 2013 report from the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association found it took responding Newtown officers 8 minutes and 39 seconds from the first call to 911 until they entered Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012. Just minutes before they entered, shooter Adam Lanza had ended his rampage by taking his own life. Newtown officers were on the scene only 1 minute and 10 seconds before Lanza’s sui

cide, the report found. Cluster said an armed officer in the building could have responded more quickly and potentially saved lives. Smigiel and Simmons are also proposing amendments to fix what they see as a flaws

in the law. Both said mental illness was under-addressed. Lanza, the man responsible for the Newtown massacre, had a history of mental illness. Yet long before Lanza entered Sandy Hook Elementary School, Simmons said a Maryland task force was studying the access of those with mental illness to firearms. An amendment to require mental health professionals report to police when a patient discloses an intent to harm or kill is among those Simmons said he plans to bring to the floor in 2014. Smigiel said he plans to again propose three amendments addressing mental illness that failed last session, including a bill to provide access to local mental health

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care for those who are released from long-term facilities. Smigiel is also proposing a change to eliminate a regulatory requirement that applicants for a handgun license shoot a firearm first. As the legislature enters an election year, Frosh said it is unlikely it will reopen the gun debate. “There’s still a lot of things we should do or should have done, but this is such a major change in the law,” Frosh said. “There are a lot of things we’d like to tighten up but I am not optimistic we’ll have another swing at it for while.”


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Brady Campaign gives state an A on measures enacted this year



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Hospital again looks at White Oak Takoma Park residents concerned about having emergency services




Washington Adventist Hospital in Takoma Park is making its second bid since 2006 to move to a larger campus in White Oak in Silver Spring. The hospital would move most services to White Oak, maintaining some, but not emergency services, in Takoma Park. President Joyce Newmyer says the hospital’s operations are unsustainable in its current location, which is too small and outdated. The hospital opened in 1907 as Montgomery County’s first hospital, spokeswoman Diana Troese wrote in the current Takoma Park Newsletter. Over the years, it has grown to a 252-bed hospital on 13 acres. It is owned by Adventist Healthcare of Gaithersburg, which also owns Shady Grove Adventist Hospital in Rockville and other medical facilities in the county. “It is simply too expensive and impractical to renovate in

place,” Newmyer said. Only 9 of the 13 acres are suitable for building, and all are in use. Rebuilding on the Takoma Park site would require a complete shutdown of the hospital, she said. The project would cost $373 million, including $33 million in renovations to the existing Takoma Park campus. The new White Oak facility would have 201 beds on a 49-acre site, and would open in late 2018, pending local and state approval. It would have fewer beds, but the hospital wants to expand outpatient services. The hospital has 1,300 employees and would hire more to staff the new facility. Adventist withdrew its first application for a Certificate of Need from the state when the reviewing commissioner recommended that the Maryland Health Care Commission, which has the final say, deny it. On Monday, Newmyer presented plans to the Takoma Park City Council, which expects to issue a resolution in the coming months with a position on the plans. The revised plan offers more details and calls for fewer beds at slightly less cost than the 2006 application. Residents also listened to

Obituary Kenneth Patrick Henderson (45) passed away on Saturday November 30 2013 as a result of complications related to his battle with cancer. Kenneth was a long time member of the Steamfitter’s Local Union 602. He was an avid NASCAR fan who especially enjoyed “camping out at the track” with his wife Jenny. They both enjoyed trips to the beach, most recently a long awaited trip to California. Kenneth had a great love for animals, his current dogs Fitter and Poon will miss him greatly. He is survived by his wife Jenny, his stepsons Travis Rousset (Dianna) and Sean Rousset (Samatha), along with his grandson Travis Rousset Jr. He is also survived by his mother Laurie Baker, his sister Leslie Fiene and her family (Doug, Conner, Peyton & Morgan), his brother Andrew Henderson and, his uncle Robert Neilson (Tio) with whom he was especially close. Also included are a host of aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews and great nieces and nephews. A memorial service will be held at St Paul’s Methodist Church, 10401 Armory Ave, Kensington, MD on Saturday December 14th @ 2:00 pm. A gathering to celebrate Kenneth’s life will follow. 1913036

the presentation and offered feedback to hospital administrators and the council. Residents’ primary concern was that emergency services would be moved to the new location. Services remaining in Takoma Park would include behavioral health, the women’s center, an inpatient rehabilitation unit, physician offices, a new federally qualified health care center, and several other clinics and outpatient services. Patients still could receive walkin primary care. About 55,000 of the 126,000 square feet would be leased to Washington Adventist University for about $1.5 million annually. The size of facilities across both locations would increase to 428,000 square feet, more than three times the size of the current hospital. Newmyer said that due to Montgomery County’s moratorium on new free-standing emergency care facilities, it is impossible to keep emergency services in Takoma Park if the new hospital is built. The moratorium expires in 2015, but representatives from the Health Care Commission have told her not to include emergency services in the plan for Takoma Park because it will be denied. Although the two campuses will be considered one hospital, she still was told the plan would not be accepted. Still, residents urged the hospital and city staff to look into options to keep emergency services available, saying that in a life-threatening situation, patients might not survive a longer ambulance ride to White Oak. The new site is about 6.7 miles northeast of the current hospital — about a 16-minute drive by Google maps’ estimate, though faster in an ambulance. “They’ve probably save my life, twice, probably because they were close,” resident Barbara Muhlbacher said of Washington Adventist. Comments can be submitted to or sent to Clerk at 7500 Maple Ave., Takoma Park, MD 20912.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Griffin seeking fifth term as county’s register of wills Olney resident is 21st in the county to hold post since 1777 n


There have been 21 registers of wills in Montgomery County since 1777, when the first one was elected. Joseph M. Griffin, the incumbent, is trying to keep that number the same for four more years. Griffin, 48, of Prince Henry Court in Olney, is serving his fourth term as the county’s register and is running for reelection next year. As register of wills, Griffin oversees the estates of people who die in Montgomery County — whether they have a will or not — to make sure their estates are executed properly and estate taxes are paid, he said. His office also holds money in trust for minors if a person leaves them money, he said. The job sometimes involves thorny legal battles between grieving family members. In one recent case, he had to mediate between children who wanted to exhume their mother’s body to see if she had been buried wearing a family necklace. “That was a terrible family problem,” he said. In most situations, he tries to mediate disputes in the will. Sometimes, that involves setting up a court hearing. Other times, the dispute stems from older, deeper family issues, he said. In those cases, he said, “I try and have them come in, sit down, and talk about not wasting all the estate’s money in court, and [say], ‘Let’s try and settle this.’” Every year, his office handles 3,600 to 3,700 wills of people who have died. The


Joseph M. Griffin

office also maintains about 30,000 wills people have given to the county for safekeeping. Griffin, a Democrat, has held one fundraiser so far, with other members of the courthouse ticket, which includes State’s Attorney John McCarthy, Sheriff Darren M. Popkin and Barbara H. Meiklejohn, who is running for clerk of circuit court. They’re all Democrats. Griffin expects to raise about $10,000 during his election campaign, he said. Griffin was the only candidate who had filed for register of wills as of Tuesday. Beyond the day-to-day operations of his job, he has been trying to find a way to plan for the future. Griffin said the number of people in Montgomery County older than 65 is expected to grow significantly in the next 10 years. “The volume of work going through [the register of will’s office] is just going to explode,” he said. State projections show that Montgomery County’s 65-plus population will grow from about 144,000 to more than 205,000 from 2015 to 2025. That will present technical and logistical challenges

for his 40-person office. At the state level, Maryland will face similar problems, he said; in Annapolis, archives for registers of wills have run out of space. Griffin is working with other officials countywide to archive wills digitally, he said. That presents other problems, though, such as how to post wills online in accordance with transparency laws, without revealing personal information that could lead to fraud and scams against the survivors. Griffin came to the Office of the Register of Wills in 1993, after working as a loan mortgage officer at Chevy Chase Bank, he said. Griffin also works as a youth group leader at his church, St. Peter’s in Olney, and runs a charity he started 10 years ago: Got Your Backpack, which donates backpacks filled with food, blankets, toiletries and other items to local homeless shelters. He has three children — Patrick, 17, Michael, 14, and Grace, 11 — and is divorced. The salary for register of wills is $98,500 a year, according to Christine Feldmann, a spokeswoman for Maryland’s Office of the Comptroller, which oversees the office of the register of wills. Politically involved and a devoted numbers cruncher, he said the job lets him work at the intersection of law and accounting. “I’m surprised I enjoy this as much as I do,” he said. He added that if he ever ran for another office, it would be something such as state comptroller. “I like running a business,” he said. “If I sat on a panel, on a council, or a committee in Annapolis, I’d go crazy.”


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page A-9

Montgomery County Selects Three Favorite Teachers Some 150,000 Ballots Cast in The Gazette My Favorite Teacher Program By Karen Finucan Clarkson | Special to the Gazette

“I have been blessed in my life to have had several outstanding teachers that took a real interest in my personal development, and it was just enough to make me want to push myself harder and set goals that have allowed me to lead a successful community-focused organization like MidAtlantic Federal Credit Union,” said Rick Wieczorek, the company’s president and CEO. While Wieczorek’s teachers took a variety of approaches in the classroom and were fervent about different subjects, “the one thing they had in common was an unwavering passion about their students and an ability to inspire a young person to look within and unlock his potential, then turn it into a desire to grow and make a difference in his world,” he said. That recognition, of how teachers change lives, is one of the reasons MAFCU has been The Gazette’s My Favorite Teacher platinum sponsor for the past three years. Wieczorek’s comments came during a December 2 awards

ecognizing our local teachers and giving them the attention they deserve” is important to MidAtlantic Federal Credit Union, according to Marc Wilensky, vice president of


An apple for the winners of The Gazette’s 2013 My Favorite Teacher program. From left to right: Bobbie Russell, Damascus High School; Ashley Tauber, Earle B. Wood Middle School; Deborah Lee, Beall Elementary School.

ceremony at BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown, where students, family, friends, school administrators, and sponsors from the local business community gathered to honor the winning teachers. The contest – also held in Prince George’s County – began in September when The Gazette asked students to nominate their favorite teachers. The newspaper selected finalists at the elementary-, middle- and high-school levels based on the most compelling student essays, and then opened up the voting to the public to select the winners. Ultimately, the contest drew some 500 nominations in the two counties and garnered more than 150,000 online votes. Montgomery County selected Deborah Janet Lee, a kindergarten teacher at Beall Elementary School in Rockville; Ashley Tauber, director of bands and orchestras at Earle B. Wood Middle School in Rockville; and Roberta “Bobbie” Russell, a professional restaurant management teacher at Damascus High School. Russell, the top vote-

marketing. That is why, for the third consecutive year, MidAtlantic FCU is the My Favorite Teacher platinum sponsor. “As a community chartered credit union, we believe in giving back to our community and what better way to give back than through education? Every day our employees educate the people of Montgomery County about financial issues. Financial

getter in both counties, is the first teacher to repeat as a winner in the six-year history of the contest. Several other sponsors, in addition to Wieczorek, were on hand to present the awards, including Suparna Shah, director of LearningRx, the elementary school sponsor; and Bill Lauck, director of communications at Barrie School in Silver Spring, the high school sponsor. The teachers were presented with the My Favorite Teacher signature award, a stunning glass apple mounted on an inscribed base. They were surprised to receive generous gifts – including presents from sponsors and a check from The Gazette – totaling $500. Each nominating student received a $50 gift card as well. During the ceremony, students read the essays they had submitted online nominating the winning teachers. Their words resonated with the sponsors, educators and parents alike. For additional details about The Gazette My Favorite Teacher contest go to

literacy is a very important component of who we are.” For more than 40 years, tens of thousands of Montgomery County families, individuals and businesses have made Mid-Atlantic FCU their financial institution of choice for borrowing, saving and checking. If you live, work, worship, attend school, or volunteer in Montgomery County, you are eligible to join Mid-Atlantic FCU. Wilensky was awed by the number of students that “took the time to write on behalf of their educators. We always

hear how kids today are involved in so many activities and how they have no free time. So the fact that these kids took some of that valuable time to write to us about a teacher that had an impact on their life is impressive.” Also impressive is Mid-Atlantic FCU’s commitment to the community it serves. “From our CEO down, everyone throughout the organization believes in giving back to the community, a commitment I have never seen anywhere else….The culture is really contagious.”


Page A-10

High School

WINNER Roberta (Bobbie) Russell Professional Restaurant Management Teacher Damascus High School

Chef is honest with her students; she doesn’t sugarcoat things; she is the only teacher I have ever met that tells it like it is. Chef is the one teacher I know that I could go to for anything and she would do everything in her power to make sure my problem was solved. Chef takes the teacher-student relationship to the next level. Gabriella Delpo, 10th Grade

This year’s top vote getter and the first teacher to be named My Favorite Teacher for a second time, Roberta (Bobbie) Russell says she is “touched, honored, and so flattered that my students feel this way about me.” This award means more to Russell than any professional recognition “because it is from my students who nominated and voted for me. It is awards such as this that keep me working despite being in chronic pain that was caused by a work-related accident in 2010.” Russell, a teacher for 13 years, holds a B.A. in liberal arts/education with a minor in special education from the College of Notre Dame of Maryland and master’s equivalency from Trinity College in education/special education. She attended L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg and took additional graduate classes at Johnson and Wales in Providence, Rhode Island. Known as Chef to students at Damascus High School, Russell became a teacher because, “I wanted to do something that would make a positive difference in the lives of young people. Everyone had a teacher who inspired them and encouraged them during the difficult teenage years. I wanted to be that person. I believe that I have reaped more rewards as a teacher than I would have in any other profession.” A native of New Orleans, Russell and her husband Ken have lived in Maryland for 19 years. They have five children – all graduates of Montgomery County Public Schools – ranging in age from 32 to 22. “I am very proud of all of them for their achievements.”




s a school, we appreciate and support the efforts of teachers at every level and type of educational institution,” says Alyssa Jahn, director of admission and financial aid at Barrie School. At the Silver Spring school – a My Favorite Teacher sponsor – teachers actively engage the minds, hands and hearts of students. “Barrie’s teachers are the foundation of all that we do, and each one is a favorite of our students and parents in their own right.” Founded in 1932, Barrie is “a center for learning for students ages 18-months through grade 12….We are also a center of excellence in training aspiring educators through our Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies.” The


renowned Barrie Day Camp, located on the school’s 45-acre wooded campus, provides a rare opportunity for children to be themselves, safely explore new things and the outdoor world, spend quality time with friends, and be guided by caring staff. “A Barrie student develops a confident, compassionate voice with an ability to advocate and lead,” notes Charles H. Abelmann, Barrie’s head of school. “This requires being able to think critically and solve problems and knowing how to work both independently and collaboratively in a group. At Barrie, we not only prepare students with skills and knowledge, but also carefully support stewards of our world, who can live fulfilling, joyful lives. Our students learn about the complexity of a world where our interdependencies demand sensitivity to culture.” To learn more, visit

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Middle School

WINNER Ashley Tauber Director of Bands and Orchestras Earle B. Wood Middle School

She not only taught me about music but about life…. Her courage and brightness kept me going with music. It helped me pursue what I almost gave up…. She implanted a never-give-up mind set, just from her attitude. I can never show the amount of appreciation I owe her; never could it be described in words. Yuni Higgs, 9th Grade

“It is rare to get a chance to experience, or in this case read about, how deeply you can touch someone else’s life, especially your students who move on to new, stimulating teachers. It is so inspiring to know that the energy, hard work, and patience that we as teachers put in with our students does make a huge difference in their lives,” says Ashley Tauber about the statement that led to her recognition as this year’s middle school My Favorite Teacher. “When I first read Yuni’s essay, I was overwhelmed with her kind words and beautiful writing!” Tauber, an instrumental music teacher at Rockville’s Earle B. Wood Middle School, received her B.M.E. from the University of Maryland and currently is pursuing a master’s in human development in education from the same institution. She anticipates graduating in May. It was Tauber’s own middle-school band director who piqued her interested in music education. “He was the teacher I stayed after school with almost every day, the teacher who showed me the joy in making music on my instrument, and the teacher who inspired me to continue performing. From my own experience as a teacher and his student, nothing compares to the connection you feel to inspirational students and teachers you have for multiple years.” Born and raised in the Manhattan suburb of New Rochelle, N.Y., Tauber is a member of the National Association for Music Education and plays soprano saxophone in the Free State Saxophone Quartet.



ducation – vital to the growth of both the individual and society – is infused into the mission and tradition of Germantown Dental & Cosmetic Center. “Education is a continuous part of our philosophy,” says Dr. Ali Alibakhshi, who, along with his staff, provides patients with the latest information concerning oral hygiene and dental and orthodontic care. That knowledge allows patients to make informed decisions regarding their treatment. It was Dr. Alibakhshi’s appreciation of and desire to honor those who “give their all and dedicate themselves to their students” that led to Germantown Dental’s sponsorship of My Favorite Teacher. “Without good teachers, there

would be no good students.” A family-oriented practice, Germantown Dental’s courteous staff and knowledgeable doctors are dedicated to patient comfort. Tenderness and compassion are the hallmarks of this warm and friendly practice, a place where the patient’s needs come first. An attractive smile has myriad benefits, no matter what a person’s age. Studies have shown that smiling not only lifts spirits and relieves stress, but it opens doors, builds rapport, and exudes confidence. Germantown Dental & Cosmetic Center is committed to helping all patients – adults, adolescents and children – achieve the smile they deserve, a healthy beautiful one. To learn more, visit


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o



She goes out of her way to make learning fun for her busy bees. She is so creative with the way she teaches and you don’t even realize you are getting smarter….She invests a lot of her own time in her class and it shows as her students and their parents love her.

Deborah Janet Lee Kindergarten Teacher Beall Elementary School

Antonino Pedone, 6th Grade

When Deborah Janet Lee read the essay nominating her as My Favorite Teacher, she felt “loved. Very much loved! And appreciated. What touches me the most is that the essay was written by a ‘busy bee’ from my very first kindergarten class. Of course, I cried.” While Lee may be the award recipient, she shares it with those who have taught her. “Every educator, teacher, and the students and parents I have met are my favorite teachers. These wonderful ‘teachers’ of mine have motivated and inspired me every day. I am so thankful to have these people in my life. They have made my dream of being a teacher better than I imagined. They are all my favorite teachers. We are all a favorite teacher to many. So, this is our award.” Lee was inspired by her first-grade teacher, who was “nurturing, fun, and really valued her students equally. I wanted to be just like her.” Now in her seventh year at Rockville’s Beall Elementary School, Lee holds a B.S. in early childhood and elementary education from Frostburg State University and a M.S. in education with reading focus from Johns Hopkins University. During the My Favorite Teacher voting, Lee received “emails, messages, calls, texts, notes, and in-person comments about how many times they have voted for me every day….My coworkers and members of the school community would stop me in the hallway or send an email rooting for me. And, of course, Antonino, my ‘busy bee,’ and the rest of the Pedone.



nsuring the success of Montgomery County’s children is a collaborative effort, one that involves parents and teachers and supportive businesses, such as LearningRx. “My Favorite Teacher is a great way to show appreciation for all our wonderful teachers in the school community and recognize them for their dedication and efforts to develop responsible, hard-working, motivated students and to instill the lifelong joy of learning in them,” says Suparna Shah, director of the North Potomac brain training center. “Our schools empower students with academic content and LearningRx training programs ensure that the skills needed to learn that content are strong.” LearningRx, located in the Quince Orchard Medical Park, is a cognitive-

Page A-11


AWARDS CEREMONY Held Monday evening, December 2, 2013 Black Rock Center for the Arts, Germantown

From left to right: Bobbie Russell, Damascus High School; Ashley Tauber, Earle B. Wood Middle School; Rick Wieczorek, Jr., president and CEO of Mid-Atlantic Federal Credit Union, the platinum sponsor; Deborah Lee, Beall Elementary School.

Barrie School was the proud sponsor of the winning high school teacher. From left to right: Gabriella Delpo, 10th grade student who nominated Bobbie Russell; Bobbie Russell, Damascus High School; Bill Lauck, director of communications of Barrie School.

LEARNING RX skills one-on-one training program for kids in preschool through high school. Cognitive training enhances one’s ability to process, store and recall information. Students with ADHD, dyslexia, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Asperger’s and other learning struggles turn to LearningRx to develop the skills needed to become better, more efficient learners. As a My Favorite Teacher sponsor, Shah enjoyed reading “students’ testimonials and what they think makes a great teacher. It was wonderful learning about the teachers and how hard they work to make a difference in the lives of their students.” LearningRx relies on the latest in brain science to permanently improve core cognitive skills and raises IQ scores, on average by 15-20 points. Brain training differs from tutoring in that it treats the underlying cause of learning struggles by strengthening weak cognitive skills. To learn more, visit

Germantown Dental was the proud sponsor of the winning middle school teacher. From left to right: Rick Wieczorek, Jr., president and CEO of Mid-Atlantic Federal Credit Union; Ashley Tauber, Earle. B. Wood Middle School;Yuni Higgs, 9th grade student who nominated Ashley Tauber.

LearningRx, the elementary school sponsor, surprised each teacher with a gift basket. From left to right: Suparna Shah, director of the North Potomac brain training center for LearningRx; Deborah Lee, Beall Elementary School; Antonino Pedone, 6th grade student who nominated Deborah Lee.

THE FINALISTS The Gazette congratulates all the Montgomery County Teachers who made it to the final voting round this fall: MONTGOMERY COUNTY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: William Tyler Page Elementary School Oak View Elementary School Stone Mill Elementary School Beall Elementary School Cold Spring Elementary School Sequoyah Elementary School Belmont Elementary School Cedar Grove Elementary School Rachel Carson Elementary School Greenwood Elementary School

•Sandy Goldschmidts •Robert Hoffmaster •Gillian Keller •Deborah Lee •Cheryl Sellitti •Charmaine St. Bernard •Gina Stamates-Miller •Regina Thompson •Christine Troilo •James Van Eyk

MONTGOMERY COUNTY MIDDLE SCHOOL: •Shari Connor Holy Cross School •Bryan Goehring Takoma Park Middle School •Tyler Johnson Forest Oak Middle School •Sarah Manchester Takoma Park Middle School •Michelle Newton Benjamin Banneker Middle School •James Reed Lakelands Park Middle School •Warren Scheib Eastern Middle School •Laura Schrader Shady Grove Middle School •Kevin Settlage Robert Frost Middle School •Ashley Tauber Earle B. Woods Middle School


MONTGOMERY COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL: •Emily Asofsky Northwest High School •Kristin Chilton Clarksburg High School •Ronald Dietz Gaithersburg High School •Herb Edelstein Richard Montgomery High School •Michelle Edwards Montgomery Blair High School •Chuck Ehrman Our Lady of Good Counsel •Steven Garfinkel Albert Einstein High School •Presad Gerard Poolesville High School •Mark Hajjar The Frost School •Roberta (Bobbie) Russell Damascus High School


Page A-12

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Tutor, coach faces Mayor considers County Council run sex abuse charges “I feel that this is my time. I really think n

Alleged victim a 16-year-old girl, police say n



Gaithersburg Mayor Sidney A. Katz said Tuesday that he is considering a run for the Montgomery County Council District 3 seat currently held by County Councilman Philip M. Andrews. Andrews has filed as a candidate for county executive in 2014. In October, Katz closed his longtime business in Olde Towne Gaithersburg, Wolfson’s Department Store, but he said the closure had nothing to do with his potential run for the county seat. Katz said he began thinking seriously about running after many people from the community encouraged him to try and offered their help. “The more I thought about it, I realized that I could do


A 30-year-old Germantown man who had been working as a private tutor and athletic coach has been arrested and charged with sexually abusing the teenage girl he was teaching. According to police, Daniel Mandel Sirotkin, of the 17300 block of Autumn Harvest Court, has been charged with two counts of sex abuse of a minor and three third-degree sex offenses. Police began investigating Sirotkin in November after Montgomery County Public School officials told police that Sirotkin was engaging in “inappropriate contact” with students, according to a police press release detailing his arrest. The alleged acts did not take place on school property, according to Montgomery County Police Officer Janelle Smith, a police spokeswoman. Schools spokesman Dana Tofig said a friend of the victim alerted a school administrator of the alleged abuse. That school administrator then contacted police, Tofig said. According to police, he was in contact with students from public and private schools in Bethesda and Potomac. Tofig said Sirotkin previously worked as a substitute teacher within the school system but could not name specific schools where he had taught. Montgomery County Police Cpl. Rebecca Innocenti declined to say what sport Sirotkin coached, or name the schools where some of his students attended, saying that police wanted to try to protect the privacy of the victim of the alleged abuse. Sirotkin has been charged


Continued from Page A-1 tests. School board President Christopher S. Barclay said in an interview that, while it is ideal for students to earn college-ready scores, he sees great benefit in students taking the AP courses and tests to help them prepare for college and beyond. Barclay said he thinks the school system needs to increase AP-course access for more students. It also needs to make sure students are well-prepared in lower-level classes before they enter the high-level AP courses, he said. Superintendent Joshua P. Starr said in a statement he was pleased with the exam results but that there are still “signifi-

Gaithersburg’s Katz will make final decision in early January

Daniel Sirotkin


with alleged crimes against one student. Police declined to explain whether he had would be charged with abusing other students or if he had engaged in inappropriate behavior with other minors. According to The Washington Post, Sirotkin was at one time in 2013 an assistant wresting coach at Our Lady of Good Counsel High School in Olney. His LinkedIn profile listed him as working at Aerotek, a staffing agency in Rockville. A woman who answered the phone there said that Sirotkin “mostly kept to himself,” and worked at the agency only a short time before finding a new job. Robinson Rowe, an attorney who represented him on a public urination charge — which was eventually dismissed — in April in Montgomery County, confirmed that Sirotkin had attended Harvard University. He said he did not yet know if he would be defending Sirotkin against the more recent charges, adding that he had not yet been retained to do so. Sirotkin is being held on $100,000 bail, online court records show. A phone number listed to his residence was not active Tuesday afternoon.

Professional Services

Gaithersburg Mayor Sidney A. Katz so much more,” he said in a phone interview with The Gazette on Tuesday. His possible run was first reported on Montgomery Community Media. “I wouldn’t be turning my back on the Gaithersburg community. I would be helping so many more communities.” Katz, 63, said he will make a decision about running in early January. The Gaithersburg native has served on the City Council since 1978, when he was first elected as a councilmember. In September 1998, he was appointed to the position of

City councilman will roll out his campaign in the weeks ahead



Gaithersburg City Councilman Ryan Spiegel announced Thursday that he will run for the Montgomery County Council District 3 seat currently held by county Councilman Philip M. Andrews (D). Andrews is running for county executive in 2014. “This is a district that needs a good representative, and there’s an open seat,” Spiegel said. District 3 includes Gaithachieved significantly higher percentages of college-ready scores than their peers on the state and national levels in recent years, including this year. Comparatively, white students grabbed college-ready scores on 79.6 percent of their tests this year — a decrease of about 1.7 percentage points from last year. Asian students — with college-ready scores on 78.2 percent of their tests — only saw a slight drop from 78.6 percent last year. AP exam participation increased again this year for both African-American and Hispanic students, continuing an increasing trend in recent years. Hispanic students took 4,253 tests in 2013, a increase of 237 from 4,016 in 2012. AfricanAmerican students took 3,297 tests in 2013 — 191 more than

ersburg, Rockville and nearby areas. Spiegel has served on the Gaithersburg council since 2007. He was re-elected in 2011, and is serving a fouryear term that will expire in November 2015. His announcement makes him the first declared candidate for the District 3 seat. However, no one had filed to run in that district as of Tuesday, according to the Maryland State Board of Elections website. Spiegel said a handful of factors encouraged him to run, including his familiarity with the district and his strong relationships with business and civic leaders. 2012 when they took 3,106 tests. The number of AfricanAmerican students taking AP exams has risen about 31.4 percent since 2008. The number of Hispanic students taking the exams has risen about 78.7 percent in the same amount of time. Hispanic students in nine high schools earned a higher percentage of college-ready scores this year compared to Hispanic students at their schools in 2012. The first several largest increases occurred at Col. Zadok Magruder with an increase of 12.7 percentage points, John F. Kennedy with an increase of 8.2 percentage points and Damascus with an increase of 6.9 percentage points. The other 16 high schools saw decreased percentages of exams with college-ready scores among Hispanic students. The

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Spiegel also cited his policy experience and collaborative efforts from his time on the city council as skills he would bring to the county position. Looking at his legislative record, Spiegel said he would like to continue working on “economic development and increasing support for vulnerable segments of the population.” Bank on Gaithersburg, a program created by Spiegel to promote financial stability for families, is another initiative he said he wants to expand. If Spiegel is elected to the County Council, he would need to leave his seat on the Gaithersburg City Council one

year before it expires. Gaithersburg city law states that if a council member vacates his seat before his term ends, the rest of the council must appoint a replacement. The appointed official will remain on the council until the next general election, provided no public petition for a special election is received within 30 days of the appointment. In the coming weeks, Spiegel said, his campaign will begin to unfold by sharing information about policy priorities, updating its website and scheduling campaign events.

largest decreases occurred at Springbrook, which dropped 20 percentage points; Sherwood, which dropped 11.5 percentage points; and Albert Einstein, which dropped 11.2 percentage points. In eight high schools, African-American students earned a higher percentage of collegeready scores compared to their peers last year. Damascus students earned an increase of 16 percentage points, Wheaton an increase of 8.5 percentage points and Col. Zadok Magruder an increase of 8.1 percentage points. Except for Walt Whitman, which remained the same, the other high schools saw decreased percentages in the number of college-ready scores African-American students earned. Among the largest decreases, Richard Montgomery

saw a decrease of 19.3 percentage points, and both Clarksburg and Wootton saw decreases of 15.9 percentage points.


as a member of the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee. She also served on the Board of Education from 2004 until 2006. She has been a strong advocate over the years for the poor, and was instrumental in making Montgomery the first in the country to have a countywide food recovery network. She called the food recovery network as one of her biggest achievements during her time on the council, as well as a program to provide meals over the summer for low-income children. Earlier this session, Ervin was a co-sponsor on a bill that will increase the county’s minimum wage to $11.50 an hour by 2017.

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mayor following the death of then-Mayor W. Edward Bohrer Jr. After winning reelection in November, Katz is currently serving a four-year term that will expire in November 2017. With many years of experience in small business ownership and municipal government leadership, Katz said he believes he could be a strong candidate for the position. If he decides to run, Katz could face competition from a Gaithersburg colleague. City Councilman Ryan Spiegel announced last Thurs-

Spiegel has eye on open seat in District 3 cant gaps in performance.” The percentage of collegeready scores dropped across the school system’s Asian, AfricanAmerican, Hispanic and white student groups but increased slightly for students who identified themselves on the exams as two or more races. The largest drops were seen among African-American and Hispanic students. About 47 percent of AfricanAmerican students’ tests got a score of 3 or higher, which is about 4.8 percentage points lower than last year. Hispanic students earned a college-ready score on 56 percent of their tests — about 4 percentage points lower than last year. Both African-American and Hispanic students in the county school system, however, have

that I could be adding something to all of Montgomery County.”

day that he will seek the same District 3 seat. Spiegel has not officially filed to run as of Tuesday, according to the Maryland State Board of Elections website. Should Katz decide to run and win in the county election, he would have to leave his seat as mayor of Gaithersburg three years before it is due to expire. Gaithersburg city law states that if a mayor or councilmember vacates his seat before his term ends, the rest of the council must appoint a replacement. The appointed official will remain on the council until the next general election, provided no public petition for a special election is received within 30 days of the appointment. “I feel that this is my time,” he said. “I really think that I could be adding something to all of Montgomery County.”

approved by a majority of the remaining members to serve out the rest of Ervin’s term, Hansen said. The new member will have to be a Democrat who lives in District 5, the same as Ervin, he said. If the council fails to act within 30 days, Leggett will appoint a candidate from a list provided by the county’s Democratic Central Committee, he said. Silver Spring Democrat Evan Glass announced in November that he intends to run for the District 5 council seat. Ervin has been on the council since 2006, and served as president for the 2010-11 term. She serves as chairwoman of the Education Committee and

PEPCO Continued from Page A-1 prepared statement. “Pepco’s return on equity should be tied to its performance and Pepco’s performance does not justify an increase,” said Mizeur (D-Dist. 20) of Takoma Park. “Marylanders deserve a commission that protects consumers and holds investorowned utilities accountable.” Even though Pepco’s rates


Continued from Page A-1 good time.” The holiday party has been a town tradition for many years.

Meeting change Due to scheduling issues, the commissioners will hold their January meeting on Jan. 6 at 8 p.m. at the Academy. have risen with each request, Montgomery County Councilman Roger Berliner (D-Dist. 1) of Bethesda, an outspoken critic of the utility, noted that the commission has denied the lion’s share of what it asks for each time. Montgomery County has spent about $360,000 over the last four years fighting rate increases, county spokesman Patrick Lacefield said.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page A-13


Stores see changing markets in sales Grocers responding to customers’ desires for cheese departments and more n



While Giant Food and Safeway still hold strong positions in the eyes of Montgomery County grocery shoppers, more are being wooed by cheese departments and other amenities in competitors such as Whole Foods Market, Harris Teeter and Trader Joe’s. And more are turning to ethnic grocers and even drugstores. In the 12-month period ending March 31, the largest sales jumps from the previous year among the 10 biggest grocer players in Montgomery were by Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, CVS and international grocers, according to figures from Columbia, Md.-based Food World magazine. Giant, Safeway and Shoppers Food were the only ones to see declines. “That has been the trend for a number of years now, especially in the Washington area,” said Patrick Donoho, president of the Maryland Retailers Association. “Grocers are competing for a finite amount of money.” Giant had 45 percent of the grocery store market share in the Washington area about a decade ago, but has seen its share slip to 35 percent in the region. Giant’s share is 23 percent if you include the groceries sold by conventional consumer product retailers such as Wal-Mart, Target and Costco into the regional mix — though it is still a strong 37 percent in Montgomery, even with Target and others. The Landover company has been renovating stores to offer sushi bars and the like, including a recent upgrade to the Bethesda Row location. Since 2008, Giant has renovated or replaced more than 145 stores in Maryland, Virginia, Delaware and Washington, D.C., said company spokesman Jamie Miller.

“This is greatly enhancing our customers’ shopping experience and adding hundreds of new jobs,” Miller said. Safeway, which has a market share of 14 percent in Montgomery, also has renovated or replaced numerous local stores, with Wheaton being the most recent. The new 60,000-square-foot store in Wheaton is about twice the size of its predecessor, said Craig Muckle, a Safeway spokesman. Numerous factors spark such renovations, including customer surveys and company studies, he said. Grocers like Giant and Safeway are not only renovating stores and offering more chef-prepared food, but increasing services such as curbside pickup, delivery and gas stations. “Some of it has to do with competition, but that is not always an overriding factor,” Muckle said. “Customers want to shop at the most modern stores. Our job is to provide the best store we can.”

Some close, others open In the past year or so, Montgomery County has lost all three of its Magruder’s stores — a local smaller brand dating to 1875. Food Lion closed one store, while Harris Teeter opened another in Clarksburg and plans a sixth store in the county in Gaithersburg’s Crown Farm development in January. More than half of Harris Teeter’s nine Maryland stores are in Montgomery; that’s just how it has worked out, said Danna Jones, a company spokeswoman. The stores offer full-service butcher markets, sushi bars, chef-prepared food and sit-down eating areas. “Decisions to build or maintain stores are never based on one thing, but rather a variety of factors, including size and configuration of sites, and existing and future traffic patterns,” Jones said. Wegmans, a family-owned brand, opened its first Montgomery store in Germantown in September. The Frederick store’s sales in the


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New restaurant in Silver Spring Urban Butcher plans to open Thursday in Silver Spring, offering a selection that features in-house cured and aged cuts of meat, as well as seafood, poultry, pig and game. It’s at 8226 Georgia Ave., two blocks south of the Silver Spring Metro station. Reflecting the chefs’ passion for whole animal butchery, many of the proteins on the menu will come from local and sustainable sources, according to a news release. Urban Butcher’s wine list of about 100 labels features avant-garde small producers from the Old World. Also, it will include newer-style wines from around the U.S. The cocktail menu features classic cocktails, plus an eclectic whiskey and malts selection. The restaurant will initially offer only dinner and happy hour, but has plans to open for brunch, lunch and coffee shop throughout the day in early 2014. TOM FEDOR/THE GAZETTE

Sarah Duranko of Frederick, an employee at the new Clarksburg Village Center Harris Teeter grocery store, ices cupcakes Thursday. 12-month period surveyed by Food World was $64.3 million, well above most competitors’. Giant’s Frederick stores averaged sales of $32.4 million, while its Montgomery locations averaged about $38 million. Safeway’s Frederick stores averaged $17 million, while its Montgomery sites averaged $22 million. Sales at the 123,000-squarefoot Germantown store — which has culinary chefs preparing various dishes, sushi and rice-bowl bars and a market café — are “right where we projected,” said Jo Natale, a Wegmans spokeswoman. “We are very pleased with the results. All of our Maryland stores are doing exceptionally well, with sales growing year-over-year for all locations.” Trader Joe’s saw sales at its four Montgomery stores rise by more than 40 percent in the past year, according to Food World. Ethnic grocers such as Shalom Kosher, which moved into the former Magruder’s in Silver Spring, saw sales increase by 13 percent.

In Frederick County, sales at Giant Food and Giant Eagle, a separate company based in the Pittsburgh area, increased by more than $4 million each in the past year, according to Food World. Meanwhile, sales at Wegmans, Safeway and Wal-Mart remained about the same, while Weis Markets saw a $2 million decline. Big changes in the food industry include more organic offerings sparked by Whole Foods and the rise of the Wal-Marts and Targets to sell a lot more food, Brian Stoffel, an analyst with investment information company Motley Fool, said in a report. “Many traditional grocers have been feeling the pinch,” Stoffel said. “The Whole Foods clan has taken away high-end shoppers who are lookingforthehealthiestoptions.And the Wal-Mart clan has stolen away the bargain hunters who want the cheapest prices they can find on food.”



Ordan inducted into Business Hall of Fame The Washington Business Hall of Fame has named Mark Ordan of Bethesda, the CEO of Sunrise Senior Living of McLean, Va., one of its four 2013 Laureates, who were inducted Dec. 3. A New York City native, he founded Fresh Fields Markets, which later was acquired by Whole Foods Market, according to a hall of fame news release. Ordan and an investment group purchased Sutton Place Gourmet and transformed it into the gourmet market Balducci’s. He later was CEO of the Mills Corp., a shopping-mall operator, then became Sunrise Senior Living’s second CEO. The inductions were made during a black-tie gala at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. Another Laureate was Linda P. Hudson, the president and CEO of BAE Systems, which has an office in Rockville. The other two were William Couper, the retired president of the mid-Atlantic region for Bank of America, and Bobbie Greene Kilberg, president and CEO of the Northern Virginia Technology Council. The Washington Business Hall of Fame gala and awards ceremony raises more than $1 million each year to support Junior Achievement programs, according to the news release.


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Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

SCHOOL LIFE Students score high with game music Magruder musicians play the soundtracks of games they play n



There are no crashes, explosions or other sounds of destruction in the video game music at Col. Zadok Magruder High School in Rockville. The music, performed by students of the Gamer Symphony Orchestra, is soft, though growing in intensity, for sure. It’s a serious work by the group preparing to take part in the school’s annual winter concert Thursday. “It’s like soundtrack music,” said Mark Eisenhower, chairman of the school’s music department and the orchestra’s sponsor. “Characters have themes.” The orchestra is completely student run, Eisenhower said, although he is willing to support the members. The musicians even do their own arrangements. Junior Macen Molina arranged the

piece the group was working on at a rehearsal Friday, a selection adapted from “Kingdom Hearts,” a role-playing game in which the main character searches for his friends. “I’ve always loved music and to be able to connect video games and music is great,” he said. Molina, who plays the bassoon in the GSO, said “Kingdom Hearts” is dramatic: The player is the key master, trying to destroy people who are. It was a natural choice for him to see if he could capture the music. Roughly 25 to 30 students play in the group, Eisenhower said. They incorporate mostly brass instruments, but also woodwinds, strings, an electric guitar and percussion. The group is led by its president, Brian Berden, a senior and saxophone player, and senior vice president Shiloh Parrish, who is the GSO conductor. Both students are active in other music groups at Magruder and members of the school’s instrumental leadership council. Berden arranged the second piece

the group plans to perform at the concert. “It’s called ‘Fight,’ a medley of a lot of battle themes,” he said. “Themes from ‘Street Fighter,’ ‘Final Fantasy VII’ and ‘Pokemon Black and White.’” The piece is a quartet for four saxophones, so he had to use pieces that could be broken down to four voices, he said. Magruder’s GSO started, the best anyone can remember, about six years ago with just a handful of members. A band member who was interested in gaming heard that the University of Maryland had a gaming orchestra, heard it play and brought the idea back to the school. “We are the first [in the county] and there is one at Quince Orchard [High School in Gaithersburg] and one at Damascus [High School],” Brian said. The students said video games are a big part of their lives. “Video games have always been a big part of my life. They’ve helped me bond with friends and get through hard times,” Brian said.


Members of the Gamer Symphony Orchestra, including (front, from left) clarinetists Stephanie Brown, 17, and Calvin Ho, 17, and flutist Timothy Ho, 17, rehearse Friday at Col. Zadok Magruder High School in Rockville. Macen said he hopes they always will be part of his life. “I’d like to go into the industry, be a graphical engineer,” he said. “Take

what artists draw and bring it to life.” And still play the music.


choral concert. For more information, call 301-610-8000

EDUCATION NOTEBOOK Eighth-graders flex math muscles in annual contest Six eighth-graders from St. Elizabeth School in Rockville took first place in the 40th annual Our Lady of Good Counsel Math Competition on Nov. 21.

Maggie Hansen, Patrick Howley, Matthew Musselman, Thomas Penny, Kerry Pullano and Connor Starkey repre-

sented the school in the competition, which included teams from 15 schools. The Olney Catholic high school invites Catholic grade schools in the area to send sixstudent teams to the annual fall competition, where they take a 45-minute, multiple-choice test written by the school’s math faculty, according to Patricia Lavin Riely, chairwoman of Good Counsel’s math department. Each team’s score is the sum of their top four individual scores. St. Elizabeth was first with 92 points, followed by St. Martin of Tours in Gaithersburg with 90 and Trinity School in Howard County with 83. Matthew Musselman of the St. Elizabeth team earned a perfect score. The top 10 students were awarded certificates and the top three teams received trophies. “Everyone celebrates with pizza and beverages at the end,” Riely wrote in an email. Good Counsel has a partnership with its Catholic feeder schools and the math competition is a way to encourage them with their math programs, she wrote, adding it is a nice way to get eighth-grade students “excited about coming to Our Lady of Good Counsel for high school.”


(Back row, from left) Thomas Penny, Patrick Howley, Connor Starkey and Matthew Musselman, and (front row, from left) Margaret Hansen and Kerry Pullano, members of the math team at St. Elizabeth School in Rockville, show off the first-place trophy they won Nov. 21 in the Our Lady of Good Counsel Math Competition.

Students sell refurbished cars and computers The Montgomery County Students Automotive Trades and Information Technology foundations will hold a sale of reconditioned vehicles and computers from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday at Damascus High School, 25921 Ridge Road. Three times a year, students from the programs hold public sales where refurbished vehicles and computers are offered at competitive prices. These sales provide the students with the opportunity to practice their sales skills, earn student service learning hours and develop an appreciation for community involvement. Test drives for the auto-

mobiles will be held from 9-11 a.m., with the sale at 11 a.m. The snow date is Jan. 4. For more information contact Kelly Johnson, 301929-2197 or Kelly_R_Johnson@ More information on the sales, including lists of cars and computers, is available at www. for autos and www. for computers.

Preschoolers collect food for those in need Young students at the

Goddard School at King Farm

in Rockville learned the importance of helping families in need around the holidays and collected more than 1,500 pounds of food during a three-

week food drive in November. The food drive gave teachers the opportunity to discuss social responsibility and healthful eating habits with their students. “While we observe the upcoming holidays that are centered on families and feasts, there are those whom will have neither,” teacher Charles Prather said in a statement. “We wanted to make a point to educate the children on how important it is to help those less fortunate than us.” All of the school’s 200-plus children and their families were invited to participate. “It is amazing how children so young can be excited about something so much larger than themselves,” said Nicole Schwartz, the private preschool’s academic director. The items were donated to Manna Food Center in Gaithersburg.

Glorystar Children’s Chorus plans concert The Glorystar Children’s Chorus will present its annual winter concert at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Chinese Bible Church of Maryland, 4414 Muncaster Mill Road, Rockville. Four choirs — beginner, training, concert and chamber — will perform holiday music for all ages. The program includes choral music from around the world, from baroque to contemporary and living composers, and in eight languages including Chinese, English, German, Latin, Italian, Spanish, Zulu and Hebrew. The audience is invited to join in a sing-along. Tickets are $12 for adults, and $5 for students and seniors; children 12 and younger are free. For reservations and information, call 240-277-7629 or

Rocky Hill blood and toy drive honors Sam Moore The public is invited to honor the life of Sam Moore, a former Rocky Hill Middle School student, by participating in the second Rocky Hill Community Blood and Toy Drive from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the school, 22401 Brick Haven Way, Clarksburg. Sam was a student at Rocky Hill when he was diagnosed with a brain tumor. He died in 2012 at age 15. To reserve a spot, call Cheryl Kemp at 301-502-2876 or visit, select the donate blood tab and enter sponsor code 55119. For help with online scheduling call 301-931-4416. Toy donations will be delivered to Children’s National Medical Center. Donors should meet the following criteria: • Be at least 17, or 16 with parental consent; website has permission form. • Be in general good health. • Have no high-risk factors for HIV or hepatitis. • Be cold- or flu-symptom free for a week. • Have photo identification.

Sounds of music at Montgomery High The music department of Richard Montgomery High School will present two free concerts this month in the school auditorium, 250 Richard Montgomery Drive, Rockville. At 7:30 p.m. Thursday, there will be a winter band concert and at 7 p.m. Dec. 19, student singers will present a winter


Book festival launches short story contest High school students from across the Washington metropolitan area are invited to submit short stories to the Gaithersburg Book Festival Short Story Contest. Stories must be no longer than 1,000 words and must start with one of the following three lines provided by Jon Methven, author of “This Is Your Captain Speaking”: • I’ve seen some odd things delivering food for Ned’s Pizza, but nothing beat the lady that ordered a half-mushroom, half fish-eyeball pie, then hit me with this request at the door … • The trouble began since my cell number is one digit off from Madam O’Wiggy’s, the psychic, which is how I came to be answering questions about the future to begin with … • The main thing to know, if pirates commandeer the cruise ship you’re on during family vacation, is that they do much less dancing and singing than in movies … Authors must be public, private or homeschooled students in grades nine through 12 at the time of entry and must live in Maryland, Virginia or Washington, D.C. They may submit only one entry. The submission deadline is midnight Feb. 21. Submissions must include the author’s name, address, phone number, e-mail address, school, grade, and English or writing teacher’s name. The top three stories will be announced at the festival May 17. More information is at


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

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Blake High students grilled during mock congressional hearings BY


Three students in business attire sat together one morning last week at a table cloaked in plastic sheets with U.S. flag designs. Facing a panel of five judges, the students were serious and focused on the Magna Carta’s influence on modern constitutionalism. The three James H. Blake High School students were one of six team units from the school who testified Dec. 4 in simulated congressional hearings on topics ranging from the U.S. political system’s philosophical and historical foundations to the challenges American constitutional democracy might face in the 21st century. Just as congressional hearings allow Congress members to question experts to gather information, the hearings at Blake allowed the students to demonstrate their knowledge of politics, law and government and their ability to link different topics. The high school students will face other Maryland school teams participating in the Center for Civic Education’s We the People program and, potentially, teams from across the country. In each of the 12 hearings on Dec. 4, the teams of three to five students began with four minutes of prepared statements on their topic question. Then the judges — board of education members, state delegates, lawyers and others — fired additional questions related to the topic for six minutes. Without any notes to help, the students must think on their feet to answer the questions. “They’re college-level questions. They’re very intense,” said Donna Phillips, who teaches and coaches the group of about 23 students. The judges “push the kids to really test the depths of their knowledge.” Students in the program work with Phillips in her Global Issues and the Law class. The team is divided into six groups, with each working on a particular topic. Phillips used to run the program at Robert Frost Middle School in Rockville and took it with her when she arrived at Blake in Silver Spring several years ago. At the local level of the competition — which pits schools in the same congressional district against each other — Blake did not have any competition this year, so last week’s scores were for only the teams’ use. The school’s team has won the state competition and gone on to the national competition the last two years. Emerson Sirk, 16, a junior at Blake, said it is “kind of like a rush” when students face questions from the judges. His team, which focuses on issues related to the Bill of Rights, is “always practicing,” he said, and the hearing questions require a lot of research. “You never know what you may need,” Sirk said. During his team’s first hearing at last week’s session, the students answered a series of questions they came up with answers for on the spot, includ-


Students (from left) Lexxus Ransom, 16, Hercia Alvarado-Gomez, 17, Emerson Sirk, 16, and Francesca Sabelhaus, 16, make their presentaion to judges about the Bill of Rights during simulated congressional hearings Dec. 4 at James Hubert Blake High School in Silver Spring.

Students Estefania Perez (left), 17, and Greyson Boone, 17, listen to feedback from judges after their presentaion on the history of changes to the Constitution in relation to the Declaration of Independence.

Jason Ross (left) of the Ashbrook Center at Ashland University offers feedback to students who made presentations during the simulated hearings. ing whether they thought for-profit corporations should have the same rights as individuals. Phillips said she sees the students become more aware and active citizens and become more articulate. For Francesca Sabelhaus, another 16-year-old junior, the hearings can

be “really nerve-wracking.” Her team prepares with the help of Phillips and through outside work that includes late nights editing speeches. Sabelhaus said she picked the Bill of Rights as her hearing topic because of its broad scope. “You draw in examples from all over

the place,” she said. Bruce Goldensohn — a former Gaitherburg mayor and former school board member — has been a hearing judge multiple times over the years. He said he sees students gain important knowledge from the program, including how to be involved in local politics. State Del. Sam Arora (D-Dist. 19) of Silver Spring said he threw out some difficult questions to help the students — whom he called “exceedingly sophisticated” — prepare for future competitions.


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“You feel for them,” he said. “I think we all want them to succeed, but no one wants to go easy on them.” School board member Michael A. Durso said the students were well prepared. Some seemed unnerved at first, but became more at ease throughout the hearings. “If nothing else, it forces them and their classes to look at something the average teenager isn’t interested in,” Durso said.




Newly elected Montgomery County Council President Craig Rice.

The Gazette Karen Acton, President/Publisher

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Geoffrey Mason, senior natural resources specialist for the Department of Parks (center, holding map) shows planning board members and others a map of the proposed legacy open space in July as they tour Ten Mile Creek where it crosses Old Baltimore Road in Clarksburg.

An addicted county In testimony before the County Council on Stage 4 development in Clarksburg, the representative from Pulte appears to make claims they have a God-granted right, a Constitutional right, a contractual right and an immutable right to develop their land, even if this threatens the water supply to 4 million people. He referenced the work of his hired environmental science dealers to assure us that no harm will come to our creek, our sole source aquifer or our lake. But indeed the facts strongly suggest otherwise. Well-planned development, poorly planned projects or meticulously planned projects have all produced the same outcome. Every stream, pond, creek, or river in the entire county, save Ten Mile creek, is severely compromised by development. Even Ten Mile Creek shows some signs of stress. We have learned that “dealers” are supporting a county addiction to “a couple more.” John Denver’s reference in Rocky Mountain High for

Support Ten Mile Creek

“more people, more scars upon the land.” We note with skepticism that the county itself does not arrive with clean hands to this debate. Montgomery desires both the taxes “a couple more” brings and to develop property it owns in the water shed. Parks and Planning, under political pressure, has generated its own offering of “a couple more” with no guarantee whatsoever that one more hit of “a couple more” on Ten Mile Creek will not destroy a critical water ecosphere. Even some of the mercantile representatives from Clarksburg itself want their own snort of “a couple more.” These dealers of destruction are the county’s equivalent of heroin dealers; development at any cost and we will disguise or ignore the risks. We now have addicts making the final decision about the fate of our last and only emergency source of clean drinking water. What do you think will be the outcome?

The Montgomery County Council has now heard two nights of public testimony on the Planning Board’s recommendations for the Ten Mile Creek Limited Amendment. Of the approximately 80 speakers before the board, an overwhelming majority spoke against the misguided recommendations for the Ten Mile Creek watershed — recommendations that allow far too much development and will not protect the currently clean creek and water reservoir it feeds from inevitable degradation and pollution. Speakers made clear, compelling and impassioned arguments for the imperative need to protect Ten Mile Creek as our county’s last clean creek, environmental treasure, and major water source for Little Seneca Reservoir, our back-up drinking water. The people have spoken. The council heard. It would now seem a travesty for the council to go against not only the obvious will of the residents, but also the clear, convincing science that backs up their pleas to protect this precious watershed and last pristine water resource in the county. It’s time for the council members to take a stand: stand for the people, for the proven science, for the environment, and for protection of Ten Mile Creek and Little Seneca Lake. We drink water and we vote.

Arthur Slesinger, Darnestown

Rita Guagliardo, Germantown

Wheaton Rec Center’s weaknesses aren’t abstract During the two hearings conducted by the Montgomery County Planning Board on the question of what to do with the Wheaton Youth Center, there was a clear divide among those testifying. On one hand, there were those who saw the building in the abstract, yearning for experiences long past and remembering honors given 50 years ago to whom the building was an academic exercise. On the other, there were those, mainly from the community, with first-hand experience with the building, who see it as undersized, badly in need of repair, and, for all of its past glories, not sufficient to serve a growing and thriving community in Wheaton. This is a community which deserves not only a new recreation center, but also a new library which would be combined on the land now occupied by the current library and the Youth Center. So here is the question for those on the Planning Board which after all has jurisdiction over the building? How could you let such a “modernist, award-winning structure,” as board chairwoman Francoise Carrier put it, fall into such a disreputable state? When I testified before the board, I showed photos of the rotting arch out front, of plastic bags stuffed in doors as insulation, and of rooms too small to be of use. Others testified that the roof leaks, the carpeting is moldy, the gym floor isn’t level and some kitchen appliances don’t work. The lighting is dim and the rooms, supposedly in Japanese style, are too small. According to the Planning Board, none of that mattered in their decision to render the structure historic. The condition of the building is irrelevant. That it fails to meet most of the criteria for designation is irrel-

Wheaton Recreation Center and Library at 11711 Georgia Ave in Wheaton. evant — it need only meet one. Each case for preservation has to be decided on its merits. In this case, the merits of the existing building are not the only ones to be evaluated. Unfortunately under the Planning Board’s code, the prospective new uses of the property, nor the desires of those who live nearby and would use the new facility, are not part of the discussion. In a different context, a different case might well be made. The board’s solution was to keep the existing Youth Center building, and allow it to co-exist with the larger, newer, energy-efficient structure that will combine library and rec center by taking up some of the grassy area that designers had set aside for outdoor activities. That is not “preservation,” nor is it “peaceful coexistence,” as Carrier

Andrew Schotz, Assistant Managing Editor Nathan Oravec, A&E Editor Ken Sain, Sports Editor Dan Gross, Photo Editor Jessica Loder, Web Editor

Dennis Wilston, Corporate Advertising Director Doug Baum, Corporate Classifieds Director Mona Bass, Inside Classifieds Director


said [“Preservation and redevelopment can coexist,” Forum, Dec. 4]. This is a serious distortion of a well thought-out facility and grounds. If the Planning Board wanted to add another element to their fanciful plan, they might as well have added a zoo for unicorns. The County Council will make the final determination next year. The Gazette’s Oct. 30 editorial [“Rec center blues”] was right that a suitable commemoration of the building is in order — a music festival or plaque that would keep alive the spirit of a structure that was fine for its time.

Art Brodsky, Olney

The writer is a member of the Montgomery County Library Board.

9030 Comprint Court, Gaithersburg, MD 20877 | Phone: 301-948-3120 | Fax: 301-670-7183 | Email: More letters appear online at

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Taking the reins

In his first address as president of the Montgomery County Council last week, Craig Rice hit all the buttons one might expect from a county Democrat. He expressed gratitude to County Executive Isiah Leggett and the fellow Democrats on the County Council. He praised Montgomery County Public Schools. He gave thanks for the hard work of county employees, police officers and firefighters, as well as the Health and Human Services Department. But having genuflected toward the key parties of the Democratic Party coalition, he said something downright Republican: He spoke well of the county’s businesses. “Businesses here in Montgomery County are not the enemy,” Rice said. “It does not require a reliance on discredited, trickle-down economics to understand that business supplies jobs that are needed and essential for economic health and for our citizens to realize [their] potential.” But it appeared that by declaring business isn’t the enemy, he drew attention to what has appeared to be the council’s battle plan. The most recent skirmish was the increase in the minimum wage. Ignoring economists who believed caution was a better plan of attack, the council pressed ahead with its own, politically motivated plan. Rice tried to argue for a wait-and-see strategy; the General Assembly might take action, making Montgomery’s move unnecessary. His colleagues didn’t agree. Ultimately, Rice surrendered. The council has crossed swords with business interests over other legislation. For example, in 2012, the council passed the displaced worker legislation, which requires companies that win certain contracts to retain the former contractors’ employees. To that, a Silver Spring landscaper said: “It’s just another law that makes it hard to do business in Montgomery County.” Council members might object to the landscaper’s sentiment, citing tax credits and other incentives the county uses to let business feel the love from our government. Despite the prevailing wisdom, the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development touts an article that shows Montgomery has the lowest tax burden of five other nearby jurisdictions, including Fairfax County, Va., which some view as the business friendliest. In his one-year term as the council’s president, Rice is unlikely to break Montgomery’s weak-on-business reputation. His address fired a shot across the Potomac: “So let me be clear, and I want Virginia to hear me: Jobs are important to Montgomery County.” To back up his statement, Rice offered a four-point agenda. Three of the points call for greater school funding, preservation of the Agricultural Reserve and restoration of cuts to county services. Point One called for an aggressive business agenda. “There are huge gains available for our citizens with appropriate effort devoted to the development of our businesses, particularly small businesses,” he said. The speech offered only one area of aggression: A change in the way the county goes about its procurement to favor Montgomery County businesses. County documents show its procurement activity on the order of $762.8 million. Possibly, new procurement rules will help the county’s small businesses. But so would a reduction in stormwater management fees, and energy and property taxes. So would an examination of county government activities for potential privatization. Rice — and the rest of the County Council — have to travel a long way to change policies, and to change perceptions. A council president is largely a figurehead. He can set meeting agendas. He’ll have a bully pulpit to highlight policy. But in the end, Rice is still one vote of nine. His bold words were a good opening salvo. But the question remains whether anyone should duck for fear of getting hit from a pendulum swinging in the other direction.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

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Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Who hijacked Thanksgiving? Remember when Thanksgiv- only if, after reading messages ing was a holiday? Remember like his, you can keep your food when family and friends gave down. thanks over a big dinner and enRegardless, we had an oldjoyed the day together? fashioned Thanksgiving durThis year a confluence of ing which I pondered the many events hijacked Thanksgiving. things for which I am grateful. Panicked by Thanksgiving’s late • I’m thankful that I’m not November date leaving only 26 a Washington Redskins season shopping days before Christ- ticket holder. mas, the retailers • I’m thankful that, went into full Santa so far, my health insurmode shortly after ance hasn’t been canHalloween. celed by Obamacare. And why waste • I’m thankful that a perfectly good the Virginia governor’s shopping day on race is finally over so family dinners? So I don’t have to watch stores opened, disanymore TV attack ads counts abounded, for an election in which sales people laI can’t even vote. bored, cash regis• I’m thankful that ters jingled and 45 MY MARYLAND the Maryland General million Americans Assembly only lasts 90 BLAIR LEE spent Thanksgiving days. Day shopping. • I’m thankful that Did I say I don’t party with NFL lineman “Thanksgiving Day”? Heck, they Richie Incognito, Toronto Mayor even gave Thanksgiving a new Rob Ford or Maryland Attorney name, “Gray Thursday,” to dis- General Doug Gansler. tinguish it from Black Friday and • I’m thankful that I didn’t Cyber Monday. have to travel over the ThanksThen someone noticed that, giving holiday. • I’m thankful that I can’t afthis year, Thanksgiving and Hanukkah fall on the same day. ford one of those $90,000 Tesla So why not merge them into Model S battery-powered luxury “Thanksgivukkah”? “Great idea,” cars that catches fire when runsaid the media, and traditional ning over something on the highway. Thanksgiving took another hit. • I’m thankful that Gov. MarThen politics poisoned the tin O’Malley is term limited. celebration. President Obama • I’m thankful that the federal and his political organization in- government is reconsidering its structed their followers to pitch decision to let airline passengers Obamacare over the holiday. yap on their cellphones during “Take advantage of down- flights. time after meals or between • I’m thankful that I didn’t holiday activities to start your help design the Silver Spring talk. Start by asking, ‘Have you Transit Center. • I’m thankful that I didn’t thought about signing up for health insurance on the new bet on the Ravens to repeat. • I’m thankful that gas prices marketplace? When do you plan on signing up?’ Be persistent have dropped 55 cents a gallon but keep it positive.” Right, and since February which helps offwhy not discuss abortion, capital set Maryland’s 83 percent gas tax punishment, gay marriage and increase. • I’m thankful that I don’t gun control, too? carpool or water ski with Del. President Obama tweeted Don Dwyer. his 40 million followers, “Cel• I’m thankful for the Inebrating Thanksgiving. Lighting tercounty Connector, the only the Hanukkah candles. Talking Montgomery highway on which about health insurance. Gotta you can use cruise control. love dinners like these.” Yes, but • I’m thankful that I don’t live

Did I say “Thanksgiving Day”? Heck, they even gave Thanksgiving a new name, “Gray Thursday,” to distinguish it from Black Friday and Cyber Monday. near the new Maryland Live or Caesar’s Horseshoe casinos now that they have all-night gambling and drinking. • I’m thankful that NSA (“The National Spy Agency”) is located here in Maryland so that when they eavesdrop on me it’s only a local call. • I’m thankful that we’ve seen the last of those god-awful, downtown Baltimore, Labor Day Grand Prix races. • I’m thankful that I’m not a member of any University of Maryland sports team next year when they play in the Big Ten. • I’m thankful that after the governor and legislature bankrupted Maryland one hundred years ago, the voters passed a balanced budget amendment to the state constitution. • I’m thankful that next year Maryland voters can make history by electing Anthony Brown, the state’s first Swiss-American governor. • I’m thankful that the family that celebrated Thanksgiving at my house last Thursday wasn’t the Black Guerilla Family. • I’m thankful for all the folks who read The Gazette every week and mail me their comments, compliments and complaints. Blair Lee is chairman of the board of Lee Development Group in Silver Spring and a regular commentator for WBAL radio. His column appears Fridays in the Business Gazette. His past columns are available at www. His email address is

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Tunnel for trail too expensive

I don’t care what the Planning Board recommends. We can’t afford another tunnel under Wisconsin Avenue [“Planning Board recommends a tunnel for Capital Crescent Trail,” Nov. 27]. The people riding bikes or hiking these days ask all of us taxpayers to pay for a new $40 million tunnel a few blocks south of one already built at Bethesda Metro. You have

to be kidding! We’ve hiked and biked all over Bethesda and Chevy Chase for years without any special tunnels to get us across Wisconsin Avenue. Aren’t there any realistic adults available to decide how to spend our tax money? Where will Maryland get the money?

Pat Broderick, Bethesda

Budget cuts hurt cancer victims This year in Maryland 30,680 people will be diagnosed with cancer. For them, the cuts to cancer research that took place as a result of sequestration are very real. More than 580,000 Americans are expected to die of cancer this year. Cancer is the second most common cause of death in the U.S. These are not numbers we can live with. Because of these cuts, 1,000 fewer people were able to enroll in potentially lifesaving clinical trials this past year and the National Institutes of Health, the nation’s medical research center, has lost more than $1.5 billion, a reality felt by cancer research labs across the

country that have had to put their work on hold and even eliminate research jobs. Because of cancer research, the five-year relative survival rate for all cancers is 68 percent, up from 49 percent. This holiday season, I’m holding out hope that Congress will still do what’s right for cancer patients and their families and turn off the sequester, reinvesting in the fight against this devastating disease.

Nikki L. Miller, Rockville The writer is a volunteer with the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network.

Noisy work ignores county’s quiet hours Work on the Kennett Street garage has been going on for three years. County “quiet hours,” from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m., have rarely been respected; very noisy work has routinely begun before 6:30 a.m. But a recent night things reached a new level: at 12:55 a.m. Dec. 6, the noisy compressors for pressure washers were still running. At about 11 p.m. I called the non-emergency police number to ask for help. Nothing happened. So about 11:30 p.m. I went out to the garage where two police officers were sitting talking in their vehicles. They said there was nothing they could do because the workers had a permit from the Department of Permitting Services. Noise went on for another hour and a half, until 1 a.m. Does the county not know that this garage is in the middle of what has become an intensely residential area or does the county simply not care if folks in south Silver Spring don’t get the respect given most other Montgomery County residents? This constant disregard for the taxpayers’ rights, enshrined in county laws, should stop.

Maynard Mack Jr., Silver Spring

WRITE TO US The Gazette welcomes letters on subjects of local interest. Please limit them to 200 words. All articles are subject to editing. No anonymous letters are printed. Letters are printed as space permits and are limited to one per person per month. Include your name, address and daytime telephone number. Send submissions to: The Gazette, attention Commentary Editor, 9030 Comprint Court, Gaithersburg, MD 20877; fax to 301-670-7183; or email to




Page A-18



Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o



SPORTS OLNEY | SANDY SPRING | Wednesday, December 11, 2013 | Page B-1

Northwest wins second title n


Jaguars’ victory against Suitland gives Montgomery County its first championship in sport since 2008




After a long season and an exhausting championship run, senior Rasheed Gillis still isn’t sure about his primary position on Northwest High School’s football team. Not that he, nor any of his Northwest teammates, care what position they play — as long as they’re on the field. “I just play wherever they put me,” Gillis said. The triple-threat — nicknamed “Flash” by a team supporter — made plays on offense, defense and special teams, helping lead Northwest (12-2) to a 33-16 victory against Suitland (13-1) in the Class 4A state championship game Friday at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The victory gave the Jaguars their first state championship since 2004. “I’m just proud of the kids for stepping up and being physical, and doing everything we asked them to do,” Northwest coach Mike Neubeiser said. Playing in cold, rainy conditions, Gillis and the Northwest defense kept the Rams in check, shutting down their run game and putting constant pressure on senior quarterback Wesley Wolfolk. Suitland’s offense was silenced in the first half, but the Rams came charging back in third quarter and trimmed Northwest’s lead to 12-8 after a touchdown on their opening drive.

Northwest (12-2) 6 6 8 13 33 Suitland (13-1) 0 2 6 8 16 N — E.J. Lee 9 run (kick blocked) S — Safety N — Joshua Gills 30 pass from Mark Pierce (pass failed) S — Tevon Singleton 40 pass from Wesley Wolfolk (run failed) N — Rasheed Gillis 2 run (E.J. Lee run) S — Darryl Jasper 4 pass from Wesley Wolfolk (Wesley Wolfolk run) N — Matt Watson 77 pass from Mark Pierce (pass intercepted) N — E.J. Lee 10 run (Diego Melendez kick)

Rushing Northwest — Mark Pierce 7-27; E.J. Lee 17-24; Rasheed Gillis 3-2; Matt Watson 1-(-1); Trint Coulter 1-(-6). Suitland — Wesley Wolfolk 1849; Robert Wigfall 9-31; Brandon Brown 4-27; Joshua Burke 7-21.


Suitland High School’s Brandon Brown forces Northwest’s E.J. Lee out of bounds during the Class 4A state championship football game at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Gillis, though, responded with a 56-yard kickoff return that gave the Jaguars possession deep in Suitland territory. The senior capped off the short drive with a 2-yard rushing touchdown which gave Northwest a two-possession lead

and proved to be the gamewinner. Sophomore quarterback Mark Pierce finished his stellar playoff run by completing 12 of 22 passes for 261 yards and two passing touchdowns. His 77-yard touchdown to senior

Matt Watson late in the fourth quarter extended Northwest’s lead to 26-16 and put the game away. “This group’s a special group,” Neubeiser said. “There’s a really nice mix — we’re kind of a young team ac-

tually. We knew coming in that we’d be young. We just needed some of the guys to step up, and they did.” Pierce recorded 14 passing touchdowns during the Jag


Region champs lead Whitman into season n



At the far corner of the wrestling mat at Walt Whitman High School, sophomore Mitch Fenton leaned over, hands on his knees, and shouted words of encouragement at his teammates. In the Vikings’ season-opening match on Saturday, the talented defending 4A West Region champion already had made his presence felt on the mat (he pinned Thomas S. Wootton’s Sina Dayanzadeh in 1 minute, 36 seconds) and now was asserting himself as one of Whitman’s many leaders. Meanwhile on the bench, senior Jack Calder sat still and chatted with one of his teammates. Calder, also a returning champion, had also already pinned his opponent (Jay Carroll in 1:02) and with his work done for the day, was leading the team in his own way. And while it’s clear that Calder and Fenton are opposites when it comes to their leadership styles, there’s little question both are key pieces of a seniorheavy Vikings lineup that is hoping for big things this season. “Mitch is all about leading like that,” Calder said.

See WHITMAN, Page B-3


Receiving Northwest — Matt Watson 3-111; Joshua Gills 5-84; Rasheed Gillis 1-38; E.J. Lee 3-28; Brandon Williams 1-7. Suitland — Steven Rivers 10132; Tevin Singleton 1-40; Robert Wigfall 2-29; Darryl Jasper 3-18; Anthony Ruffin 1-0; Dakarai Ellis 1-(-1).

North county making its move in swimming

With different styles, Fenton and Calder pose serious threat for Vikings BY

Passing Northwest — Mark Pierce 12-22261-0; Trint Coulter 1-1-7-0. Suitland — Wesley Wolfolk 1842-218-1. Dakarai Ellis 0-1-0-0.


Northwest High School’s Tiara Wellman runs the 55 meters at the Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex on Saturday.

Jaguars return top talent, hope to win states BY


Northwest High School’s boys’ and girls’ track and field teams have what coach Robert Youngblood calls a “sibling rivalry,” and right now it’s the boys — the 2013 4A outdoor state champions


— who have the edge. But with the girls returning almost all of their talent, that advantage could swing the other way by the end of the indoor season. “I see the potential in both teams,” Youngblood said. “It’s extraordinary.” Northwest’s boys’ and girls’ teams both impressed during Saturday’s Montgomery County Public Schools meet

Winston Churchill High School, Thomas S. Wootton, Walter Johnson, Richard Montgomery, Montgomery Blair and Poolesville. Which swimming and diving team seems out of place in the county’s top division? Six years ago the answer would easily have been Poolesville. But the small-school program, which swept last year’s Class 3A/2A/1A state championship, has not only ascended into the county’s upper echelon, but should hold its own among the county’s best this winter. “It’s kind of crazy, if you look at the makeup of Division I, seven years ago I never would have thought we’d be there,” Poolesville coach Johnny Leong said. The landscape of county swimming is changing as Potomac-, Bethesda- and Rockville-based teams are no longer the only programs producing top performances. Montgomery County Public School high schools are divided into four result-based divisions.


See SWIMMING, Page B-3

Northwest teams poised for another championship run n

After seven years, area swimming programs feel the effects of Germantown Indoor Swim Center


Page B-2

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o


Boys’ Player of the Year

Girls’ Co-Players of the Year

Aliza Wolfe

Imani Dorsey

Raul Escobar James H. Blake Senior Midfielder

Good Counsel Senior Midfielder/forward

Walt Whitman Senior Midfielder

Integral component of Blake’s historic run to a second-place finish in the state; scored six goals and led county with 17 assists.

Falcons coach Jim Bruno said it best: “Imani doesn’t let you lose.” Duke recruit recorded 15 goals and seven assists for WCAC champions this season.

Fantastic playmaker tallied 10 goals and five assists and was the heart and soul of the Vikings first championship run since 2004, second overall.



James H. Blake High School’s Raul Escobar (right) is The Gazette’s Player of the Year in boys’ soccer.

Good Counsel’s Imani Dorsey is The Gazette’s Co-Player of the Year in girls’ soccer.


Whitman’s Aliza Wolfe is The Gazette’s Co-Player of the Year in girls’ soccer.

Girls’ first team

Boys’ first team

Amanda Amankwa

Karli Cirovski

Eliza Doll

Megan Hinz

Delaney Muldoon

Walt Whitman Senior Midfielder

Damascus Senior Midfielder

Good Counsel Senior Defender

B-CC Senior Forward

Good Counsel Senior Goalkeeper

Holy Cross Junior Defender

Wake Forestbound striker scored 12 goals (3 game-winners) and assisted six.

Dynamic, physical Vikings midfielder displayed technical superiority all season.

Integral cog in the Swarmin’ Hornets first region title in 10 years; scored four goals.

Dominant in the air to lead a stingy backline, added three goals and eight assists.

One of county’s most creative players; Colgate recruit recorded eight goals, 11 assists.

Range, athleticism, fearlessness and ability to communicate set Michigan recruit apart.

Tartans didn’t lose a beat after losing a dominant defender and she was the reason why.

Alejandro Perez-Albela

Jeremy Yeager

Wielfried Zouantcha

Alejandra Ramos

Clare Severe

Carly Shapiro

Stephi Shin

James H. Blake Senior Defender

Clarksburg Senior Midfielder

Wootton Senior Goalkeeper

Northwest Junior Defender

Walter Johnson Senior M-fielder/defender

Walt Whitman Junior Defender/forward

Winston Churchill Senior Defender

Quince Orchard Junior Midfielder

Intellectual center back anchored a defense that only allowed more than one goal once.

Notched six goals and five assists while helping Coyotes to a division championship.

Finished career with a remarkable 0.62 goals against average, stopped three PKs this year.

Talented and physical center back with outstanding distributing awareness.

Peru U-20 National Team player’s versatility has been invaluable, tallied six goals, five assists.

Good luck to anyone trying to outrun or catch this extremely technical Lehigh recruit.

Shutdown defender was strong in the air; strong and accurate foot led to five assists.

Incredibly skilled with the ball at her feet and was starting point of many goals (10 goals).

Donald Benamna

Max Boimov

Alessandro Burlew

Zach Fingerhut

Vegas Kastberg

Montgomery Blair Senior Forward

Gaithersburg Junior Midfielder

Good Counsel Senior Forward

Landon Senior Forward

Repeat first team selection was the tireless engine behind Blazers’ success.

Trojans’ steadying presence in the middle scored four goals and assisted three more.

WCAC Player of the Year and three-year starter scored 16 goals and added six assists.

Teddy Liakakis

Dunchadhn Lyons

Winston Churchill Senior Defender Quick, physical, smart back helped the Bulldogs record nine clean sheets this fall.

Boys’ Coach of the Year

David Edlow Blake 3rd season

Girls’ second team

Jonathan Hart, Poolesville; Neal Iannone, Gaithersburg; Davey Mason, Walt Whitman; Drew Montemarano, Georgetown Prep; Sebastian Obando, The Heights; Pat Quackenbush, Northwest; J.J. Van der Merwe, Winston Churchill; Frank Valladares, Col. Zadok Magruder; Gabriel Vasconcelos, Walter Johnson; Keenthy Yeboah, Montgomery Blair; Andrew Zingone, Georgetown Prep

Keaira Clark, Winston Churchill; Michaela Colon, Gaithersburg; Steph Cox, Damascus; Nia Dorsey, Our Lady of Good Counsel; Danielle Fernandez, Damascus; Anna Gurney, Walt Whitman; Jarena Harmon, St. Andrew’s; Emily Martin, Walt Whitman; Maddie Pack, Our Lady of Good Counsel; Courtney Parr, Our Lady of Good Counsel; Jade Ruiters, Academy of the Holy Cross

Boys’ honorable mention Bryan Argueta, Col. Zadok Magruder; Andrew Battin, Clarksburg; Juan Castellon, Wheaton; Jose Cooper, James H. Blake; Jack Feldman, Landon; Robert Galvan, Springbrook; Ofentse Kale, Col. Zadok Magruder; Matthew Kirchoff, Our Lady of Good Counsel; Ibrahima Kouyate, Montgomery Blair; Alex LaNoire, Our Lady of Good Counsel; Greg Lovegrove, Bullis School; Kyle Madden, Walter Johnson; Brian Mitchell, Bullis School; Duc Momo, Bethesda-Chevy Chase; Jared Nozick, Thomas S. Wootton; Heyner Pajaro, Wheaton; Matt Russell, James H. Blake; Tom Stavrou, Walter Johnson


Led the Bengals to their first appearance in a state title game as well as the school’s first division and region championships.

Boys’ second team




Girls’ honorable mention Emma Anderson, Walt Whitman; Kaylie Deshler, James H. Blake; Sophia Dillon, Rockville; Dana Eckerstrom, Northwest; Paula Germino-Watnick, Bethesda-Chevy Chase; Alexis Greene, Thomas S. Wootton; Olivia Kane, Holton-Arms; Tania Mamdouhi, Winston Churchill; Sam Sullenger, Quince Orchard; Delia Tremble, Montgomery Blair; Tiffany Woods, Sherwood

Girls’ Coach of the Year

Greg Herbert Whitman 9th season Having the most talented team on paper doesn’t always translate onto the pitch, but Herbert brought out something special in the Vikings’ Class 4A state championship run this fall.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o


Continued from Page B-1 “I’ve wrestled for a long, long time and I kind of like teaching people on their own rather than trying to establish my tone.” Said Fenton: “I like to scream in the room at people if they don’t do things right or if they’re taking breaks. But Jack doesn’t really talk that much in the room.” Despite the extreme differences in approach, it works well for the Vikings. Calder is joined by senior captains Jacob Cutler, Kevin Baker and Max Sessions, as well as four-year starter Harriet Symington, to form the nucleus of Whitman’s team, which defeated the Patriots, 46-24, in the opener. “These guys know what they’ve got,” Whitman coach Derek Manon said. “I told them

that we have the potential to do great things, but right now it’s just potential. We need to work in the room, we need to push it every day.” Both Calder (160) and Fenton (145), who are sparring partners in practice, flew a bit under the radar last season en route to their regional titles, but that certainly won’t be the case this year. They’re the top targets for opponents against a Whitman team that is rich with experience. “Any time you’ve got two returning region champs and state qualifiers in the room, it’s a huge bonus,” Manon said of Calder and Fenton. “They know what work is expected of them when they’re out on the mat and they’re looking for those bonus points for the team.” Fenton has been wrestling since he was 5 years old and has known Calder for nearly as long.

Both grew up wrestling at the club level together, along with Symington. “When we wrestle, Mitch and I are complete opposites,” Calder said. “He gets really angry and I stay completely relaxed the whole time. I pretty much never get angry unless the guy is egregiously fouling me or something.” A common bond that both share entering this year is their regional championship crowns from last season. And, as would only seem fitting, they both view holding the title in different ways at the start of the 2013-14 campaign. “There’s a lot more pressure when you wrestle as a region champ,” Calder said. “I feel like I have to dominate every match, or I feel like I’m letting down the prestige. But I think it also gives you a lot more confidence because you know kids are going

to be a lot more scared when they come in, just because of the title.” Added Fenton: “I kind of just put it behind me and thought that this is a completely new season. I basically have a target on my back. Everybody wants to beat the returning region champ.” And while repeat performances by both Calder and Fenton would be impressive, the Vikings, who won a state title in 2005, are cautiously optimistic even greater things could be in store for the team as a whole. “We’ll get there when we get there,” Calder said when asked about the team’s season goals. “The thing about the season is it changes a lot from the beginning to the end. I think it’s a bit too early to talk about where we’re going to be.”


Walt Whitman’s Jack Calder (right) beat Thomas S. Wootton’s Jay Carroll on Saturday.

Page B-3


Walt Whitman’s Mitch Fenton (back) beat Thomas S. Wootton’s Sina Dayanzadeh on Saturday.


Albert Einstein

Richard Montgomery


Athletes to watch: Laila Ismail, Alex Riishojgaard

Athletes to watch: Victoria Cabellos, Luke Woodard

Athletes to watch: Stephen Alexander, Ozioma Edokobi

Athletes to watch: Lauren Woods, Tiffany Woods

Montgomery Blair




Athletes to watch: Susanna Maisto, Stephen Varella

Athletes to watch: Kayuza “Kelvin” Masanja, Alexia Mitchell

Athletes to watch: Jalen Walker, Tiara Wellman

Athletes to watch: Karen Escobedo, Corey Young

James H. Blake

Georgetown Prep

Paint Branch

Walter Johnson

Athletes to watch: Sarah Moore, Martha Sam

Athletes to watch: Luke Posniewski, Junda Yu

Athletes to watch: Funmi Daramola, Harold Dorsey

Athletes to watch: Christian Campbell, Keirnan Keller

Bullis School

Good Counsel


Watkins Mill

Athletes to watch: Simone Glenn, Kyla Lewis

Athletes to watch: Tyler Cleaver, Rachel Pocratsky

Athletes to watch: Claire Beautz, Chase Weaverling

Athletes to watch: Melanie Dakwa, Sone Penda

Winston Churchill


Quince Orchard


Athletes to watch: Kyle Beatty, Lucy Srour

Athletes to watch: Lisa-Anne Barrows

Athletes to watch: Elliott Davis, Donovan Tyler

Athletes to watch: Ryan Scott, Chris Teah


John F. Kennedy


Walt Whitman

Athletes to watch: Claudia Ababio, Tavis Holland

Athletes to watch: Alieu Cole, Devon Hairston

Athletes to watch: Jonathan Baginski, Mecalia Palmer

Athletes to watch: Clare Severe, Ed Smith



Seneca Valley

Thomas S. Wootton

Athletes to watch: Steven Desaulniers, Denise Woode

Athletes to watch: Oliver Hightower, Kevin Soraci

Athletes to watch: Tyatianna Johnson, Damion Rowe


Continued from Page B-1 in Landover, which offered a glimpse of what to expect for the winter season. Senior Tiara Wellman recorded the fourth-best time in the 300 meters (42.70 seconds) while also placing tied for 18th in the 55 — a race she does not usually run. She will be joined by nearly the entire cast from last year’s county and region championship team, including senior Naomi Sheppard and sophomore Chanel Solomon. “Everybody’s coming back, I’m excited about it,” Wellman said. The boys team finished second in the county, region and state last indoor season and is looking to duplicate that success this winter. The group has depth and star power, including a pair of juniors in Diego Zarate and Jalen Walker, the 2013 Gazette’s Athlete of the Year for track and field. In Saturday’s meet, Zarate and Walker looked poised to


Continued from Page B-1 uars playoff run. “We knew we had to do it for these seniors this year,” Pierce said. Senior Joshua Gills, who spent part of the season under center, caught five passes for 84 yards. The multi-position star caught a 30-yard touchdown in the second quarter that capped off an 85-yard drive. “This is a terrific season with a storybook ending,” Gills said. “The seniors couldn’t have asked for a better year.” Northwest senior cornerback Rodney Snider had a shutdown performance in the

add to their already impressive resumes. Zarate placed second in the 1,600 (4:35.5) and fourth in the 800 (2:05.6); Walker took first place in the 55 (6.4) and won the 300 (36.4). The boys’ and girls’ teams support each other like they are siblings, Youngblood said. For Zarate, whose freshman sister Sofia placed fifth in the 1,600, that’s actually the case. “We’re pretty much like a family,” Diego said. “We’re all cheering for each other, we’re all pulling for each other.” Northwest will face plenty of tough competition throughout Montgomery County. While Clarksburg’s boys graduated two of its top scorers — Paul Joseph and William Bertrand — the defending county, region and state champions have several up-and-coming runners who could make up for the lost production. Look for Carlos Vanzego and Tavis Holland to account for a significant potion of Clarkburg’s scoring. Vanzego broke a school record in the triple jump (45’8”) at the Sat-

urday meet. “We have new guys sort of having to step into that leadership role and prove themselves,” Clarksburg coach Scott Mathias said. Thomas S. Wootton’s girls finished second in last year’s 4A West Region indoor championship, but lost two talented runners in Gwen Shaw and Sylvia Deppen. They are now running at the University of Louisville and Harvard, respectively. Third-year coach Michael Thompson remains optimistic about his team, with several of his top runners returning, including senior Kiralyn Harrison and Rachel Maizel. “I think making first or second in the county is realistic for us,” Thompson said. Northwest, though, might have as good a chance as any school to field championship teams on both sides. “If each person does their job and we all pull our own weight, then we can really do something big,” Zarate said.

secondary, breaking up four passes and intercepting a deep throw late in the second quarter. The special teams advantage belonged to the Jaguars, whose opening offensive possession started on Suitland’s 28-yard line as a result of a short punt. Northwest capitalized on the field position and took a 6-0 lead after E.J. Lee’s 9-yard rushing touchdown. The Rams started slow for the third consecutive game, committing seven penalties and managing only 105 yards in the first half. Their offense picked up in the second half, but so did their penalties. “You can’t have 17 penalties in a state championship game. That shouldn’t be al-

lowed. Those are things we did and we have to own up to it,” Suitland coach Ed Shields said. The Rams had not lost since November 2012, when they were defeated by Henry A. Wise 41-6 in the 4A South Region final. Northwest’s victory gives Montgomery County its first football state championship since Sherwood won in 2008. “It’s just an amazing feeling,” Pierce said. “Words can’t explain how we all feel right now. It’s great to definitely shock the world, and get it done.”

Athletes to watch: Alan Banks, Rachel Maizel


Poolesville High School’s senior Xavier Laracuente is part of the school’s up-and-coming swim and dive team.


Continued from Page B-1 Poolesville is in the county’s top six this winter while traditional powers such as Walt Whitman, which dropped to Division II this year for the first time since the late 1990s, and Bethesda-Chevy Chase are not. Based on recent years’ results, it’s likely current second-tier teams like Northwest, which just seven years ago was in the county’s fourth division, and Quince Orchard will make their way into that elite group in the coming years. “I think we’re definitely seeing a lot of development [from other parts of the county],” Whitman coach Geoff Schaefer said. “More teams are hanging with the top teams, you’re going to see a more competitive field.” One reason for the trend, Northwest coach Amy Mason and Leong agreed, is the overall growth of the sport in general. While the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area has long been one of the nation’s strongest areas for national-level talent, popularity in swimming has reached new heights with the success of Olympian and Maryland native Michael Phelps and more recently, the ascent of Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart junior Katie Ledecky, Mason said. The building of the Germantown Indoor Swim Center in 2006 is the other major factor. The pristine facility gave northern Montgomery County residents accessibility to an indoor facility and top-notch year-round coaching, something that until then required a pesky commute. Of the county’s six public indoor pools, the Germantown facility, housed at the Sportsplex in Boyds, is the

northernmost. “The swim center opening, it opened up a whole new area for swimming to spread to,” Leong said. “We know Montgomery County is all over a great area for swimming but this made it more accessible [to the northern areas]. We have a bunch of kids on our team who swim there, it’s the closest pool to their home.” When the facility first opened, the younger age groups were the biggest, Mason said, because most of the high school-aged swimmers were already established in their club programs. Seven years later, those younger age groups have made their way to high school. In the past, Mason said, she would be happy to have three or four club swimmers per class. This year, there was an influx of year-round swimmers in the freshman class. The girls’ team alone welcomed eight club-level athletes this winter. High school sports go in cycles, but this recent surge from northern county programs is not one that is likely to pass. Bethesda, Potomac and Rockville only became powerhouse areas after the Kennedy Shriver Aquatic Center, formerly the Montgomery Aquatic Center, opened in North Bethesda, Walter Johnson coach Jamie Grimes said. In the late 1990s, Watkins Mill was one of the county’s best, but the closing of the neighborhood’s YMCA hindered accessibility to indoor swimming during the winter. “We’re definitely seeing a shift,” Schaefer said. “Germantown has certainly been making an impact the last few years on swimming. I’m interested to watch how this whole season unfolds.”


Page B-4

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Einstein’s freshman guard getting the point n

JD Guerrero expected to play big role for Titans BY ERIC GOLDWEIN STAFF WRITER

Albert Einstein High School’s upperclassmen said they want to take some of the pressure off their freshman starting point guard early in the season as he figures out his role in the offense. But come playoff time, don’t be shocked if the 15-year-old returns the favor and takes the pressure off his senior team-

mates. JD Guerrero, 6-foot-0, is a talented point guard with a high basketball IQ, solid court vision and tremendous ball-handling skills. For an Einstein team that already has established scorers — among them senior forward Joe Bradshaw (6-7) and junior guard Rahim Hayes (6-4) — Guerrero could be the perfect fit. “What he gives is a little bit of stability for us,” Einstein coach Rich Porac said. Guerrero, who attended St. Jude Regional Catholic School in eighth grade, has played under

Porac in summer league. This season, he wants to be a lead distributor for the Titans, getting everybody involved in the offense while also putting up points when necessary. “I want to be a ‘Chris Paul,’” Guerrero said, referring to the Los Angeles Clippers’ pass-first point guard. The Titans lacked a natural point guard last season but won nine of their last 13 games, taking an astronomical leap forward after their 2-10 start. In spite of the strong finish, the end-result was a playoff exit: a 64-54 loss to Ur-

bana in the Class 3A West Region semifinals. While the Titans hung around with the Hawks — thanks in large part to then-senior Josh Ogburn’s team-high 16 points — they were outscored in the fourth quarter and let the game slip away. Einstein didn’t fare any better against Urbana in Friday’s 62-47 loss in the season-opener, but the players saw positive signs in the loss with the offense running smoothly late in the game. “The nice thing about JD is he will take that pressure off [them],” Porac said.

Growing pains are inevitable for the Titans and their freshman point guard, particularly with upcoming games scheduled against Col. Zadok Magruder and Springbrook. But the challenging regular season schedule will give Guerrero time to adjust to his new role. “He’s young, so he has to get more mature, basketball-wise,” Bradshaw said. The freshman point guard has been a willing learner thus far. “At 15 years old, are you going to be mentally able to handle

it when things aren’t going well and we’re playing at packed gyms?” Porac said. But Porac, a third-year coach, is optimistic about Guerrero’s long-term prospects with the Titans. “He’s an outstanding gem that’s in the program for four years,” he said. For now, the freshman is focused on improving his game and making his teammates better. “If we all work together, then anything’s possible,” Guerrero said.

Churchill’s new basketball coach is just one of the boys Former Magruder assistant Robert Bean hopes to continue program’s success



First-year Winston Churchill High School boys’ basketball coach Robert Bean figures if he can do it, so can his teen-aged players. The former six-year assistant to Dan Harwood at Col. Zadok Magruder doesn’t just bark orders at the Bulldogs, he runs alongside them. “I’m 40, I’m still young, I’m having fun and I want to stay in shape,” Bean said. “I kind of take thewholerolemodelapproach[to coaching]. I think it maybe helps with motivation.”

It does, junior Bobby ArthurWilliams said. It also helped gain Churchill’s trust in the short amount of time the team had with their new leader before Friday’s season opener — the Bulldogs got off to a good start with a 67-62 win over Paint Branch. The energy and enthusiasm for the sport of basketball and imparting his wisdom upon the Bulldogs that Bean brings to the gym every single day, senior guard Allen Njumbe said, quickly earned the former Hobart College point guard the Bulldogs’ respect. “[Bean] does a good job being with us,” Arthur-Williams said. “Most coaches make you run, you do conditioning and they just watch you do it. [Bean] does it with us and it’s like he’s part of the team.”

Though Bean was only appointed just a few short weeks before tryouts in mid-November — former five-year coach Matt Miller resigned this fall after accepting an assistant coaching position at Shepherd (W. Va.) University — he was by no means a stranger to the program. In fact, a second-year counselor at the school, he developed a unique bond with many of his currentplayersashe’shelpedsupport them through the tragic suicide death of a former teammate last May. The Bulldogs have dedicated this season to Evan Rosenstock and will wear his initials on their shooting shirts, Bean said. “First of all, Robert is just a really caring person, he was a great counselor at Magruder for six or seven years,” Harwood said.

“Forget about being a basketball coach, when he left Magruder, people were devastated that we lost a great counselor. Many times what you’re doing when you work with young student-athletes, you’re almost like a psychiatrist, so his counseling background is really going to help him.” Bean stepped back from coaching at Magruder three years ago after the birth of his second child to spend more time at home. In the spring, he started helping with offseason training, and he and Miller discussed the possibilities helping out next winter if he was ready to return to the sidelines. Bean said at the start of this year he had no intention of coaching again just yet, but this opportunity was not something he could turn his back on.

Churchill had a system in place that worked. Under Miller the Bulldogs (18-6 record a year ago) have won 18 or more games in each of the past three division title-winning seasons and in 2012, madeitsfirstClass4AWestRegion appearance in more than three decades. While keeping some of the same basic principles intact — pushing the ball, getting it inside — Bean implemented an entirely new structure in just 12 practices and his players didn’t put up any resistance. Churchill’s new motion offense allows players to freelance, to read opponents’ defenses and play accordingly. Six-foot-6 center Arthur-Williams is a dynamic bigman type player and his presence inside helps open up opportunities for Njumbe and Jesse Locke

on the perimeter. The three returning starters are the focal point of Churchill’s offense, but are surrounded by a talented supporting cast, Bean said. Though Friday’s win was just the beginning and Bean said the team has a long way to go, the Bulldogs certainly seem to be on the right path despite all the changes within the program. Locke, Njumbe and Arthur-Williams said they suspect opponents will underestimate them but that would be a mistake. “A lot of times point guards make very good coaches, they have a different perspective,” Harwood said. “... He’s got the whole package other than just being the head coach. I’m sure Matt did a great job and I’m sure Robert will continue to build on it.”

Confident freshman emerges as Jewish Day gets off to hot start BY TRAVIS MEWHIRTER STAFF WRITER

Two years ago, Dave McCloud wasn’t at a Charles E. Smith Jewish Day Middle School practice to see Bryan Knapp. In fact, he didn’t even know Knapp. The Lions’ current high school varsity coach can’trememberexactlywhoitwas he was checking out, but only that

it is totally irrelevant now. The eighth-grader McCloud had gone to see play didn’t leave much of an impression and wound up transferring. McCloud thinks he wound up at Winston Churchill. Either way, it doesn’t matter. Knapp and the unforgettable athleticism he displayed as a seventh-grader matters. “Hewasn’tevenonmyradar,” said McCloud, who now oversees Knapp, a 6-foot-1 freshman averaging 12.5 points per game, on varsity. “And I saw him, and I said,

hand, a rare display of ambidexterity for a middle school player. “I said, ‘Whoa,’” McCloud recalled. “He went to the basket confidently.” Afterwards, the coach approached Knapp about his future with the school. The confidence the youngster displayed at the rim bordered on hubris when it came down to evaluating his own ability. “I got a pretty good conversation with him,” McCloud said. “I said, ‘I look forward to you coming

up, playing on the [junior varsity],’ and he said, ‘Coach, I look forward to playing on varsity.’” The timing for Knapp’s promotion to the top level — McCloud’s first ever freshman starter on a varsity team — couldn’t have been any better. The Lions lost top scorer Ethan Walfish and his 17.4 points per game to graduation, and while Danny Kravitz (13.7 ppg last season) would be returning for his senior season, he needed a complement. Enter Knapp. “I think it’s been really inter-


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esting to see how I fit in,” he said. “I’m still making the adjustment to high school ball. It’s different.” Through the first four regular season games, Kravitz and Knapp have combined for 110 points and neither has been held to single digits in leading the Lions to a 3-1 record, including a 54-41 win over defendingPotomacValleyAthletic Conference champion McLean. “This kid’s got some ability,” McCloud said.




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‘What about this kid? He moves pretty good, he moves different. He’s not robotic at all, very fluid.’” If McCloud was impressed simply by the athletic manner in which Knapp navigated the court, he was blown away by the middle schooler’s ability to finish. The coach remembers a particular sequence when Knapp slashed through the lane, cut back and finished at the rim, slapping the backboard for emphasis. The next possession down, Knapp did the same thing only to his opposite


Knapp is averaging doublefigures in scoring for Lions





The Gazette’s Guide to

Many moving parts keep a sprawling ensemble cast busy and engaged

Arts & Entertainment

Page B-8


Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Page B-5








Audience joins in ‘A Wake for Jacob Marley’ n



Readers learn a lot about the mean and miserly Ebenezer Scrooge in Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” but not much is known about Jacob Marley, Scrooge’s deceased business partner. Marley is the guy in Dickens’ story who died seven years before he appears to Scrooge as a spectre in chains to introduce the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. “It’s my favorite novel ever written, and I wanted to pay homage to it without doing another ‘Christmas Carol,’” said Christopher Goodrich, who has tapped his imagination to also create a life for Marley.

See DICKENS, Page B-9 Dominic Massimino as Aufidius in “Kabuki Coriolanus,” now playing at Lumina Studio Theatre in Silver Spring. RON MURPHY

KABUKI CORIOLANUS n When: 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday n Where: Round House Theatre, 8641, Colesville Road, Silver Spring n Tickets: $8-$15 n For information: 301-565-2282, luminastudio. org



Lumina Studio Theatre’s “Kabuki Coriolanus,” now playing at the Round House Theatre in Silver Spring, is what director David Minton calls “one of the most visual shows Lumina has ever done.” The show is coming up on its second weekend with four shows between Saturday and Sunday. “[Kabuki] is really in your face and the colorful makeup and the exaggerated facial expressions and the costuming in particular,” Minton said. “The costumes are extremely

Baakari Wilder plays Ebenezer Scrooge in “A Wake for Jacob Marley,” an imagined wake for Ebenezer Scrooge’s departed business partner, on Saturday at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda.

decorative and colorful.” Kabuki is a classical style of Japanese theater known for its stylized approach to drama and the elaborate makeup worn by its actors. Minton was first introduced to Kabuki while studying abroad during his junior year of college. “I lived with Japanese parents who sort of adopted me during my time there,” Minton said. “They asked me what I wanted to do and I said I wanted to see as much Japanese theater as I could ... I went to my first Kabuki performance and that blew my mind.”

See KABUKI, Page B-9

A WAKE FOR JACOB MARLEY: AN UNEXPECTED FUNDRAISER n When: 7 p.m. Saturday n Where: The Writer’s Center, 4508 Walsh St., Bethesda n Tickets: $55 at the door; $45 ($25 tax deductible) in advance ($25 additional to participate with scripted lines, or sponsor a character — included in program, photo with character; $10 additional for a photo with Jacob Marley. Cocktail attire is encouraged) n For information: 301-337-8290,


Actor Heather deMocker as Virgilia.

A Capital Christmas Capital Hearings hope to delight Montgomery fans




The Capital Hearings will perform at the BlackRock Center for the Arts on Sunday.


“It’s not just about the performance, it’s about the connections,” said singer John Hazangeles. “We’re all about making connections.” Hazangeles is the business manager for the Capital Hearings — or

Caps as they call themselves — a Washington, D.C.-based a cappella group comprised of 12 classicallytrained singers. The group will perform at BlackRock Center for the Arts for the first time on Sunday. “When you say a cappella, it can mean 10 different things to 10 different people,” Hazangeles said. For Hazangeles and the Caps, a cappella means connecting with an

See CAPITAL, Page B-9


Page B-6

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o


The Coral Cantigas bring their trademark blend of Latin American, Spanish and Caribbean choral music to the Mansion at Strathmore on Dec. 18.

Latin vibe Washington, D.C.’s own Coral Cantigas will perform their trademark blend of Latin American, Spanish and Caribbean choral music at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18 at the Mansion at Strathmore in North Bethesda. Coral Canitgas has performed at the Kennedy Center, presidential inaugural celebrations, museums, embassies and more, and has taken part in international tours in Argentina, Venezuela and Puerto Rico. For more information, visit WORLD TOURING ENTERTAINMENT

The State Capella of Russia will perform a “Russian Christmas” on Thursday at Montgomery College’s Robert E. Parilla Performing Arts Center.


The State Capella of Russia will perform its “Russian Christmas” at 8 p.m. Thursday at Montgomery College’s Robert E. Parilla Performing Arts Center in Rockville. Led by artistic director and chief conductor Valeri Polyansky, this will be the State Capella of Russia’s first ever tour of the United States. The program will feature masterpieces by Rachmaninoff, Bortnyansky and Grechaninoff, as well as western classics and famous Christmas carols. For more information, visit


The National Philharmonic Chorale artistic director Stan Engebretson will conduct the National Philharmonic in Handel’s “Messiah” on Saturday and Sunday at the Music Center at Strathmore.

Global Glorystar The Glorystar Children’s Chorus will present its annual winter concert at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Chinese Bible Church of Maryland, 4414 Muncaster Mill Road, Rockville. Four of the

Trumpets sound The National Philharmonic will present Handel’s “Messiah” at 8 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Music Center at Strathmore in North Bethesda. National Philharmonic Chorale artistic director

Stan Engebretson will conduct the concert, featuring the philharmonic’s nearly 200 voice all-volunteer Chorale, as well as soloists soprano Rosa Lamoreaux, mezzo-soprano Magdalena Wór, tenor Robert Petillo and bass Kevin Deas. Handel’s most famous composition, “Messiah” also remains among the most popular works in Western choral literature. Divided into three parts addressing specific events in the life of Christ, it includes such favorites as “The Trumpet Shall Sound,” “And the Glory of the Lord,” and the “Hallelujah Chorus.” A free pre-concert lecture is scheduled for 6:45 p.m. on Saturday and again at 1:45 p.m. Sunday in the concert hall at the Music Center at Strathmore. For more information, visit www.


The Glorystar Children’s Chorus will present its annual winter concert on Saturday in Rockville.




group’s choirs - beginner, training, concert and chamber - will present a program of choral music from around he world in eight different languages, including Chinese, English, German, Latin, Italian, Spanish, Zulu and Hebrew. The audience also will have the opportunity to learn the Chinese folk song “Fèng yáng huagu” (“Flower Drum Song”) for a sing-along. For more information, visit


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page B-7

Sugar Plum Fairies everywhere! Venues celebrate with ballet standard Ballet written more than 120 years ago still popular today




Fresh off the success of the ballet “The Sleeping Beauty” in 1890, Pyotr Tchaikovsky was commissioned to write a double-bill program that featured a ballet and an opera. The opera would be called “Iolanta,” while the ballet became a classic staple of the Christmas season. Based on E.T.A. Hoffmann’s story “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King,” Tchaikovsky and his partner Marius Petipa put together what is now known as “The Nutcracker.” Just in time for the holiday season, several area venues will present their versions of the popular tradition. The ballet tells the story of young Clara who dreams a toy nutcracker comes to life and goes to war with gingerbread soldiers against the mice. After defeating the mice, the nutcracker, who becomes a prince, and Clara travel to the Land of Sweets to celebrate. At the Olney Theatre Center, the Olney Ballet Company will present Mary Day’s version of “The Nutcracker,” with student dancers from area ballet schools performing with professional


The Nutcracker defends Clara-Marie against the Mouse King and his minions in The Puppet Co.’s presentation of “The Nutcracker.” guest dancers. Mary Day is the founder of the Washington Ballet while Patricia Derrend, who served for 20 years as répétiteur for Day’s “Nutcracker,” is at the helm as director. “In a nutshell — pun intended — we combine the skills of about 90 student dancers with guest professionals from around the country to do Mary Day’s classic [‘Nutcracker’],”

said Olney Ballet Theatre president Royal Dellinger. “Miss Day founded the Washington Ballet and choreographed this ballet over 50 years ago.” Olney’s “Nutcracker” opens on Friday and runs through Christmas Eve. Ticket prices range from $15 to $45. For more information, visit or call 301-774-9850. Meanwhile, in North

Bethesda, the Music Center at Strathmore will host the Moscow Ballet’s production of “The Great Russian Nutcracker.” The company of 40 awardwinning dancers brings a Russian flair to the show with leaps aplenty. “The Great Russian Nutcracker,” is set to run at 7:30 p.m. Monday and Tuesday. Ticket prices vary from $28 to $88. Visit or call 301-5815100 for more information. Continuing the tradition of performing the full-length staging of the show, the Metropolitan Ballet Theatre and Academy will present “The Nutcracker” at the Robert E. Parilla Performing Arts Center at Montgomery College in Rockville. The Metropolitan Ballet has presented the show in its entirety every year since 1989. Student and professional dancers alike work together on stage to bring the story to life. The Metropolitan Ballet’s production of “The Nutcracker” will end its run this weekend with a 7 p.m. performance on Friday and 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. shows on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets range in price from $17 to $25. For more information, visit their website at or call 301-762-1757. Montgomery College is home to two Nutcracker shows this year. The Maryland Youth Ballet out of Silver Spring will perform “The Nutcracker” at the E. Parilla Performing Arts Center Dec. 21-23 and Dec. 26-28. Tickets for the show vary in price from $23 to $33. For more information, visit, montgomerycollege. edu/PAC or call 240-567-5301. For a different spin, the Puppet Co. in Glen Echo blends marionettes with costumed characters in what is the com-

pany’s 25th anniversary of “The Nutcracker.” Actors dressed as mice, Clara and even the nutcracker interact with puppets on stage while they tell the story of “The Nutcracker.” The show is recommended for ages 5 and up, but is suitable for the whole family. Tickets for the show, which runs from now until Dec. 29 are $10. Times for the show range from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., so be sure to visit the website at thepuppetco. org or call their box office at 201634-5380 for exact times. In Prince George’s County, the University of Maryland’s Ballet Company M will present its version of “The Nutcracker” at 7 p.m. on Saturday in the Dance Theatre at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center in College Park. Ballet Company M will perform the second act of “The Nutcracker,” where they will take the audience on a journey through the Forest of the Snowflakes to the Land of Sweets. Tickets for the show are free, but seating is limited, so folks are encouraged to get the tickets as soon as possible. Visit or call 301-405-2787 for tickets or for more information.

IN THE ARTS Hollywood Ballroom, Dec. 11, International and Standard Latin Night with Paul Huston, workshop from 7:30-8:30 p.m., dance from 8:30–11 p.m. ($16), Dec. 12, 19, Tea Dance from 12:30-3:30 p.m. ($6); Dec. 13, drop-in lessons from 7:309:30 p.m., West Coast Swing Dancing with Dance Jam Productions at 9 p.m. ($15); Dec. 14, Rumba lesson at 7:30 p.m., Social Ballroom dance at 8:30 p.m. with Helmut Licht Big Band ($25 in advance, $30 at door); Dec. 15, free Tango lesson

at 7 p.m., Social Ballroom Dance at 8 p.m. ($16); Dec. 18, International and Standard Latin Night with Paul Huston, workshop from 7:308:30 p.m., dance from 8:30-11 p.m. ($16), 2126 Industrial Highway, Silver Spring, 301-326-1181, www. Glen Echo Park is at 7300 MacArthur Blvd. Blues, Capital Blues: Thurs-

days, 8:15 p.m. beginner lesson, 9-11:30 p.m. dancing to DJs, Glen Echo Park’s Spanish Ballroom Annex, $8, Contra, Dec. 6, Adina Gordon

calls to Maivish; Dec. 13, Warren Doyle with the fabulous Glen Echo Open Band; Dec. 20, Sargon de Jesus calls to Morrison Brothers; Dec. 27, Bob Isaacs with Perpetual e-Motion, 7:30 p.m. lesson, 8:30 p.m. dance, Glen Echo Park Spanish Ballroom, $10, Contra & Square, Dec. 15, Susan Taylor with Sligo Creek Stompers; Dec. 22, Janine Smith calls with Morrison Brothers Band; Dec. 29, Anna Rain with Perpetual eMotion, 7:30 p.m., Glen Echo Park Spanish Ballroom, $12 for general,

$9 for members, $5 for students, English Country, Dec. 11, Caller: Liz Donaldson; Dec. 18, Caller: Anna Rain, 8 p.m., Glen Echo Town Hall (upstairs), www. Now and Then Dance Studio, Saturday ballroom dances, second and fourth Saturdays, beginner group lesson at 8 p.m., open dancing at 9 p.m., $10 cash at door (all men admitted at halfprice throughout October), 10111 Darnestown Road, Rockville. 301424-0007, www.nowandthendan-


Scottish Country Dancing, 8-10

p.m. Mondays, steps and formations taught. No experience, partner necessary, T-39 Building on NIH campus, Wisconsin Avenue and South Drive, Bethesda, 240505-0339. Swing, Dec. 14, Daryl Davis, lesson at 8 p.m., dancing at 9 p.m., Glen Echo Park, $15, Waltz, Dec. 15, Sugar Beat; Dec. 29, Terpsichore, 2:45-3:30 p.m. lesson, 3:30-6 p.m., dance, $10, www.

Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club, The Artie Shaw Orchestra

with Swingtopia, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 11; James Bazen Big Band — Merry Christmas Take One, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 12; The Marsh Brothers Band, 8 p.m. Dec. 13; A Very Chaise Lounge Christmas, 8 p.m. Dec. 14; Christmas with the Celts, 7 p.m. Dec. 15; Gotta Swing Dance Night with The Cutaways, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18; Joyce Lyons, 7:30 p.m. Dec.





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Page B-8

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o


‘Out of the Furnace’: Revenge tale is fueled by strong cast BY




“Out of the Furnace” is a lot of movie, a lot of it good and pungent. In the first hour especially, its many moving parts keep a sprawling ensemble cast busy and engaged. Christian Bale and Casey Affleck play Russell and Rodney, sons of a dying Pennsylvania steelworker. Russell has gone into the family business, working in the mill. Rodney enlists in the Army. The year is 2008. An early twist of fate lands Russell in prison. Upon his release, he and his brother, back from a punishing fourth tour of duty in Iraq, must learn to adjust to new versions of their old lives. Russell’s ex-girlfriend, played by Zoe Saldana, now goes around with the mild-mannered local sheriff (Forest Whitaker). Rodney tries to work off his gambling debts (Willem Dafoe plays his bookie) by bare-knuckle boxing in the realm of a vicious New Jersey backwoods gang headed up by Woody Harrelson. Everyone in Braddock, Pa., and environs knows everyone else’s business, and in some cases they know they’d better keep quiet about it.

n 3 stars n Rated R; 116 minutes n Cast: Christian Bale, Woody Harrelson, Casey Affleck, Willem Dafoe, Sam Shepard, Forest Whitaker, Zoe Saldana n Directed by Scott Cooper

Writer-director Scott Cooper’s debut feature was the simple, satisfying country ballad “Crazy Heart,” and if that Jeff Bridges showcase operated like a three-minute song expanded into a full-length movie, “Out of the Furnace” is more like a mournful Springsteen album reimagined for the movies. The film opens with a grim prologue, barely related to the stories to come. We’re in a drive-in, and the Harrelson character commits an act of sexual violence so rough it risks throwing people straight out of the movie. It’s effective in one way, certainly: It establishes the casual venality of the story’s chief adversary, a meth-addled sociopath thriving in a tough economy where honest workers

have criminally few options. In its setting and portraits of machismo under duress, “Out of the Furnace” recalls the home front sequences of “The Deer Hunter.” The actors clearly are enjoying one another’s screen company. Sam Shepard is also in the cast, as the brothers’ wise old uncle, who joins Russell in his search for the brother who messes with the wrong criminal element. There is an oddly frustrating showdown at the end of the script’s increasingly familiar, predictable and wearying path. Cooper’s strength as a writer lies in creating dramatic situations in which there is no simple matter of right or wrong at stake; often, it’s a matter of two rights. So why does the picture settle, in the end, for good-versus-evil revenge? Audiences demand such things, I suppose. But audiences are open to other sorts of depictions of the American working class. They simply need some help finding movies that come and go in a flash, such as the recent, ambitious “Place Beyond the Pines,” which married melodrama with sociology in ways “Out of the Furnace” cannot reach. It’s the little things we take home


(From left) Sam Shepard and Christian Bale star in Relativity Media’s “Out of the Furnace.” with us, such as the handwritten menu above the bar in the local tavern (“We Have a New Fried Hot Sausage Sandwich”). The big things, such as the cross-cutting between a deer hunt and the grisly demise of a major character, betray a heavy hand. Yet


Continued from Page B-7

19; Holiday Tango concert with Roberto Pomili Orchestra, 8:30 p.m. Dec. 20, call for prices, 7719 Wisconsin Ave., Bethesda. 240330-4500, BlackRock Center for the Arts, Holiday Swing with Daryl


Jason Statham as Phil Broker, James Franco as Gator, and Winona Ryder as Sheryl Mott in “Homefront.”

Institute of Musical Traditions — Takoma Park, Ensemble Gali-


A bloody bore featuring Jason Statham wasting steaming piles of rednecks in small-town Louisiana, “Homefront” nonetheless contains many teachable moments while setting a very low bar for fathers everywhere. One such moment, for example: If your 10-year-old daughter is watching you, don’t murder that optional 10th or 11th bad guy. She doesn’t need to see that. And we don’t really need this old thing, which tries to be a modern Western but ends up being a swampy, derivative action film, indebted to B movies of the ’70s but unable to pay the debt in an interesting way. Sylvester Stallone wrote the script to “Homefront,” adapting Chuck Logan’s crime novel.

For a time the picture was being shaped as a Rambo film, to star Stallone, bringing his lucrative franchise back to an American setting. Instead it became a Statham revenge outing, in which the boiling kettle of rage plays a Drug Enforcement Administration cop who infiltrates a nest of drug dealers, survives a bust gone bad and, two years later, relocates to bayou country with his preteen daughter. She is played by Izabela Vidovic, who spends much of the film in tears, screaming in terror and looking for her pet kitty. James Franco plays the local meth kingpin and all-purpose threat, the one who takes the cat. And the kid’s stuffed bunny pillow! If “Homefront” has any distinction, it’s Franco’s agreeable way with a

lei, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 20, Takoma Park Community Center, call for prices, times, Takoma Park Community Center, 7500 Maple Ave., Takoma Park, 301-960-3655,

HOMEFRONT n 1 1/2 stars

Institute of Musical Traditions — Rockville, TBA, Saint Mark

n R; 100 minutes n Cast: Jason Statham, James Franco n Directed by Gary Fleder

garden-variety villain, albeit a villain named Gator, taking us back to the days and the vibe of “White Lightning.” I was rooting for Franco’s character all the way. For one thing, he doesn’t make the audience suffer through cheesy sentimental bits. For another, there’s something about Statham’s patented hooligan scowl that doesn’t suggest “ideal family man,” at least in the story scripted by Stallone and directed with a hacky sense of action by Gary Fleder. The female characters have a little more going on than usual, to Stallone’s credit. Kate Bosworth and Winona Ryder play conflicted lost souls, trapped in a dirty town’s way of taking care of business. Line to line, Stallone has a particularly numbing penchant for the f-word. But the key f-word in “Homefront” is “familiar.”

Presbyterian Church, 10701 Old Georgetown Road, Rockville, call for prices, Strathmore, Afternoon/Specialty Teas, 1 p.m. Dec. 11, 18, 28; Zemer Chai: The Jewish Community Choir of Washington, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11, 7 p.m. Dec. 15; BSO: Holiday Cirque, 8 p.m. Dec. 12; Spanish Harlem Orchestra: Salsa Navidad, 8 p.m. Dec. 13; Friday Night Eclectic: San Fermin, 8 p.m. Dec. 13; Miniatures Workshop, 10 a.m. Dec. 14; National Philharmonic: Handel’s Messiah, 8 p.m. Dec. 14, 3 p.m. Dec. 15; Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 17; Coral Cantigas, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18; The Washington Chorus: A Candlelight Christmas, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19, 23; AIR: Integriti Reeves - Christmas Jazz Songs, 11 a.m. Dec. 20; Ricky Skaggs, 8

p.m. Dec. 20; The Irish Tenors: The Premiere Irish Holiday Celebration Tour, 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Dec. 21; National Philharmonic: Washington Symphonic Brass, 4 p.m. Dec. 22; Bohemian Caverns Jazz, 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 22; Salute to Vienna, 3 p.m. Dec. 29, call for venue, Locations: Mansion, 10701 Rockville Pike, North Bethesda; Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, 301-581-5100,

ON STAGE Adventure Theatre, “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” to Dec. 30, call for prices, times, Adventure Theatre MTC, 7300 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo, 301-634-2270, Do or Die Mysteries, TBA, 6:30 p.m. buffet, 7:30 p.m. show, $47.50 buffet and show, Flanagan’s Harp and Fiddle, 4844 Cordell Ave., Bethesda, 443-4223810, Imagination Stage, “Lyle the Crocodile,” to Jan. 10, call for prices, times, Imagination Stage, 4908 Auburn Ave., Bethesda, Olney Theatre Center, “The King and I,” to Dec. 29; Olney Ballet Theatre’s “The Nutcracker,” Dec. 13-24; “A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story of Christmas,” to Dec. 29, call for prices, times, 2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Road, Olney, 301-924-3400, The Puppet Co., “The Nutcracker,” to Dec. 29; Tiny Tots @ 10, select Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, call for shows and show times, Puppet Co. Playhouse, Glen Echo Park’s North Arcade Building, 7300 MacArthur Blvd., $5, 301-634-5380, www. Round House Theatre, Bethesda, “The Lyons,” to Dec. 22, 4545 East-West Highway, Bethesda. 240-644-1100, www. Round House Theatre, Silver Spring, “Meena’s Dream,” Jan. 8-14, call for show times, 8641 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, $15 for general admission, $10 for subscribers, patrons 30 and younger and seniors, 244-644-

1100, www.roundhousetheatre. org. Silver Spring Stage, “A Christmas Carol,” Dec. 13-22, Woodmoor Shopping Center, 10145 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, see website for show times, www. The Writer’s Center, TBA, 4508 Walsh Street, Bethesda, 301654-8664,

VISUAL ART Adah Rose Gallery, John James Anderson and Mei Mei Chang, to Dec. 28, 3766 Howard Ave., Kensington, 301-922-0162,

The Dennis and Phillip Ratner Museum, TBA, hours are 10 a.m.

to 4:30 p.m. Sundays, noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10001 Old Georgetown Road, Bethesda. 301-897-1518. Gallery B, December Exhibition: Eric Garner, to Dec. 28, opening reception from 6-9 p.m. Dec. 13, gallery hours are noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, 7700 Wisconsin Ave., Suite E. Glenview Mansion, Rockville Art League Juried Members’ Show Varied Media, to Dec. 30, Rockville Civic Center Park, 503 Edmonston Drive, Rockville. Marin-Price Galleries, William Woodward, to Dec. 24, 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, 7022 Wisconsin Ave., 301-718-0622. VisArts, Michael Sellmeyer: Paintings, Drawings, Prints, That Mostly Go Together, Dec. 11 to Jan. 12, opening reception from 7-9 p.m. Dec. 13, Common Ground Gallery; Lauren Boilini: Rabid Habits, Dec. 11 to Jan. 12, opening reception from 7-9 p.m. Dec. 13, Gibbs Street Gallery,155 Gibbs St., Rockville, 301-3158200, Washington Printmakers Gallery, “Land Lines,” Clare

Winslow, to Dec. 29, meet the artist from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 14, Pyramid Atlantic Art Center, second floor, 8230 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring,

Three to see

w No ing! w Sho F.

Scott Fitzgerald Theater

603 Edmonston Dr. Rockville, MD 20851


The Nutcracker 2013 Presented by Rockville Civic Ballet


December 14 at 2pm and 7:30pm December 15 at 2pm 1912886

Tickets $17 to $13



Davis and Gotta Swing, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19, call for tickets, 12901 Town Commons Drive, Germantown. 301-528-2260, Fillmore Silver Spring, Sara Bareilles and Gavin DeGraw, 7 p.m. Dec. 11; Steve Winwood with Cris Jacobs, 8 p.m. Dec. 12; Gary Allan WMZQ Concert for Kids w/ Cole Swindell and special guests, 8 p.m. Dec. 13; Andrew Dice Clay, 8 p.m. Dec. 15, 8656 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, 301-960-9999,, www.livenation. com.

Affleck, in particular, finds something fierce and noble in uneven material and in his character’s rage. He’s not like any other actor in American movies. “Out of the Furnace” has four or five actors of which you could say the same.

Returning to the Washington, D.C., area following a standing-room only performance at the Phillips Collection in December 2012, the Hermitage Piano Trio — descending from the great Russian musical tradition — will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington in Rockville. The trio is (from left) pianist Maxim Mogilevsky, cellist Sergey Antonov and violinist Misha Keylin. Featured in the program are Alyabiev’s “Piano Trio in A Minor,” Mendelssohn’s “Trio No. 1 in D minor, Op. 49” and Rachmaninoff’s “Trio No. 2 in D minor, Elégiaque, Op. 9.” Tickets are $40 for the general public, $35 for students and seniors (62 and older) and $30 for JCCGW members. For more information, visit and


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page B-9



Continued from Page B-5 audience with sometimes rather unconventional performances, such as in April 2011 when the group surprised lobbyists and members of Congress on Capitol Hill with a rendition of “America the Beautiful” during Arts Advocacy Day. Or the following month when the Capital Hearings staged a flashmob proposal on behalf of a young man for his unsuspecting girlfriend at Good Stuff Eatery on Capitol Hill. Or last year when the group did a second surprise rendition of “America the Beautiful” to open the American Institute of Architects National Convention. “[Surprise performances] have become one of our signature things,” Hazangeles said. The first Capital Hearing performance, however, was a planned one. It was a 2010 outdoor, pool-side concert at the Residence of the Deputy Head of Mission of the British Embassy for a Choral Arts Young Patrons event. The group had gotten its start just a few months earlier after Hazangeles, Caps music director Dileep Srihari and Carolyn Wise struck up a friendship as members of the Choral Arts Society of Washington. “[It] started very innocently as a bunch of people getting together at someone’s house,” Hazangeles said. “It’s a group that started out of musical curiosity.” All Capital Hearings members are trained vocalists and many come by way of some of the area’s most renowned choral groups, including The 18th Street Singers, Choral Arts, and Cantate Chamber Singers. The group rehearses once every other week and more often during the holiday season. According to Hazangeles, the Caps’ repertoire includes “music of the Renaissance to Katy Perry.” The set list for Sunday’s concert at BlackRock is

n When: 4 p.m. Sunday n Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts, 1209 Town Commons Dr., Germantown n Tickets: $22 n For information: 301-5282260,

The Capital Hearings will make their BlackRock Center for the Arts debut Sunday night. just as diverse, featuring everything from carols to classics like “Frosty the Snowman” and “Rudolph,” to contemporary favorites such as Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You.” Capital Hearings members

each hold separate professions, ranging from middle school music teacher to attorney to realtor and a handful of federal employees. “Our members are some of the most interesting, ambitious

professional people I’ve met in my life,” Hazangeles said. “Knowing that we’re part of a creative process together makes the relationship even more strong and even more special.” While the Capital Hearings


Continued from Page B-5


Molly Beckett as the Announcer in Lumina Studio Theatre’s “Kabuki Coriolanus,” this weekend at the Round House Theatre.


Continued from Page B-5 The experience stuck with the director and upon his return to the states, he took courses in Japanese, read about Japanese theater and saw any performances that came to town. The Japanese theater influence eventually made its way into Minton’s work at Lumina. “[Founder] Jill {Raye] and I always wanted to do Shakespeare in different ways,” Minton said. “I think that’s one of the philosophies of Lumina; one of the philosophies we operate by.” Six years ago, Minton decided he wanted to stage a Shakespeare play in a Japanese style. The result was a production of “Julius Caesar” with a feudal Japan twist. “There are remarkable similarities between the Japanese Shogun culture ... and Roman culture,” Minton said. “The obvious plays were the Roman plays by Shakespeare.” “Julius Caesar” was a hit. According to Minton, it was one of the most popular shows Lumina has ever done. A few years later, Minton was ready to revisit Japanese culture, this time with a Kabuki influence. “For me it was sort of obvious which play it would be,” Minton said. “One of Shake-

speare’s warriors and his last tragedy, ‘Coriolanus.’” “Coriolanus” is the story of the Roman leader Caius Martius who, banished by the Romans, joins the Volscian army. Lumina actors James Sleigh and Ben Lickerman share the role of Coriolanus. Lickerman, a 16-yearold student at Montgomery Blair High School, has been acting with Lumina for eight years. But preparing for a role in a Kabukistyle show presents a fresh challenge for the young actor. “Normally in Lumina we focus on speech, [so] to then work on all of this posture and movement is interesting,” Lickerman said. “We’re not going full-on Kabuki but every [movement] is deliberate, precise, to the point. You really have to discipline your body and make sure you’re in full control.” Minton, along with choreographer Shizumi Shigeto Manale, worked with the actors to make sure they mastered the physical nature of the play. “Even before we got our parts and our lines, we got the physicality down,” Lickerman said. “Shizumi, day one, she trained us to move this way, straight back, head forward.” Despite the importance of movement, Minton said Lumina has not abandoned its dedication to language. “That’s why we’re here, be-

cause of the words,” Minton said. “So we’re not losing that in this show ... What we tried to do was marry that with the nature of Kabuki which is broad and big and visual.” A major visual aspect of the play is the use of video, something Lumina has employed in past productions. “I’ve had an interest in video and how it can be incorporated in ways that are both entertaining and actually add something, a new facet to the way we see the production or the script,” Minton said. While video didn’t seem appropriate for the production of “Julius Caesar,” Minton said the multimedia facet fit nicely with the Kabuki style. “One of the aspects of Kabuki theater is being big and being over the top,” Minton said. “Kabuki is a really welcome, big expansive style so [video] would really be appropriate.” The director said video is used in “Coriolanus” to make announcements, the way a servant in a Shakespeare play would. “In our production there’s a video [Kabuki-style] mask that comes on and turns back and forth and we hear words come out,” Minton said. “It’s an alternate universe.”

“We don’t know who Marley is [in ‘A Christmas Carol’]” said Goodrich, who in his script, “A Wake for Jacob Marley,” brings Marley to life through five characters who remember him. They are Scrooge (Baakari Wilder), Bob Cratchit (Scott Courlander) and Tiny Tim (Katie Zitz) from Dickens’ 1843 novella and two characters that Goodrich created specifically for this show — Marley’s wife (Lois Sanders) and daughter (Amanda Spellman). Marley (Brandon Mitchell) also makes an appearance — at his own wake. “It’s creative and pretty wide open,” Goodrich said. Scheduled for Saturday at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda, “A Wake for Jacob Marley” also doubles as a fundraiser for the Unexpected Stage Company, which Goodrich founded with his wife, Rachel Stroud-Goodrich, four years ago. The audience is invited to


tend to perform primarily in Washington, D.C., Hazangeles said the group is excited to expand into Montgomery County. “Part of [this concert] was wanting to perform in Montgomery County,” Hazangeles

enjoy Christmas carolers and imbibe champagne, wine, malt ciders and holiday food, while also participating in the wake as people who knew Marley. “It’s as if they had known Jacob and are coming to mourn him,” said Goodrich, who added there is humor and fun in the event, but also “definitely some serious colors.” And this is not a wake where mourners sugarcoat their memories of the departed, he said. “You don’t encounter the whole picture — that’s always bugged me,” said Goodrich, who goes deeper into the complexities of Marley and how he’s perceived by others. “You see a lot of honesty,” said Wilder, whose character, Scrooge, ran a moneylender’s firm with Marley. Wilder said he’s having fun exploring Goodrich’s script to find ways to express Scrooge’s relationship with Marley. “They both had the same desires about keeping and making money,” he said. But how did Scrooge feel about his business partner?

said. “We have a growing fan base [there].” Hazangeles said the Caps are also excited for the opportunity to perform in BlackRock’s Mainstage Theater. “I have been an admirer of BlackRock and specifically the Mainstage Theater ...” Hazangeles said. “It has really, really wonderful acoustics. Normally if we were in a ... hall like that we would need to be mic’d, but at the Mainstage Theater it’s almost sort of a church or cathedral acoustic. We can do more classical pieces in a way we would in a smaller setting.” When it comes time to choose songs for their holiday concerts, Hazangeles said it’s always a little tricky. “With holiday music, there’s always a balance,” he said. While the group’s repertoire committee typically meets before the holiday season to decide what pieces would be fun and challenging for the Caps, Hazangeles said there is “usually all kinds of interesting debate and discussion among the group. Ultimately though, song selection comes back to the heart of the group: connections, with their audience and with each other. “There’s something really special about making music together,” said Hazangeles, who also added the Caps greatly encourage audience participation. “There’s something really remarkable about two or three or 12 voices coming together.”

And would he be open enough to express it in front of mourners? Wilder also said he is working on staying in character as Scrooge while mingling with the audience as other mourners, such as Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim, relay their memories. “It’s about how you react to everyone speaking — you’ve got to keep the environment going outside the script,” Wilder said. Wilder must also react when Marley shows up at the proceedings. Unlike Scrooge, who is ultimately redeemed thanks to Marley’s intervention, Marley himself is not saved in Dickens’ story. “He’s wearing some pretty heavy chains,” said Mitchell, adding that Marley has the chance to hear what people have to say about him after he’s dead. “It’s about having fun, but it’s also about these people in real life [who interact] in ways that are unexpected,” Mitchell said.


Brandon Mitchell plays the deceased Jacob Marley, and Lois Sanders plays his wife, Suzanna Grendel-Marley, in “A Wake for Jacob Marley,” an imagined wake for Ebenezer Scrooge’s departed business partner, on Saturday at the Writer’s Center in Bethesda. The one-night theatrical event doubles as a fundraiser for The Unexpected Stage Company cofounded by Chris Goodrich, who penned the script for the wake.

Page B-10


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o


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Call 301-670-7100 or email


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The Village at Rockville - a National Lutheran Community, is seeking a full time and part time concierge to join our dynamic rehab team. Candidates must be service excellence focused, friendly, courteous, and person-centered advocates for each rehab guest. Successful candidates must possess strong problem solving skills and be able to communicate with a wide variety of disciplines. Full time hours: Monday-Friday, 10am - 6:30pm; part-time hours include every other Saturday & Sunday 10am - 6:30pm. Qualifications include high school diploma or equivalent, receptionist and/or concierge experience in a senior health care setting. Must be able to work in a fast-paced, computer automated environment. Compensation includes excellent pay and a benefits package. If interested, please email your resume to EOE

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Sheehy Ford Lincoln in Gaithersburg is looking for qualified professional to work at our Truck center location as a Diesel Technician. Competitive Pay, NO weekends or holidays and great benefits includes 401k, life insurance. Short term and long term disability and more! Apply online @, on our Careers page.


Gazette Careers

Position Location: Pentagram Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall 204 Lee Avenue Building 59, Room 116 Fort Myer VA 22211-1199 EOE Pharmacy/ Phlebotomy Tech Trainees Needed Now Pharmacies/ hospitals now hiring. No experience? Job Training & Placement Assistance Available 1-877-240-4524 CTO SCHEV

Dental/ Medical Assistant Trainees Needed Now Dental/Medical Offices now hiring. No experience? Job Training & Placement Assistance Available 1-877-234-7706 CTO SCHEV



Busy Rockville Doctor’s office. Must be a team player, dedicated, & career oriented. Serious applicants only. Willing to train. Excellent salary & benefits. Fax resume: 301424-8337



Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page B-13

Careers 301-670-2500 Sales

Sales - Outside

James A. Wheat and Sons has immediate opportunities for Plumming Salesman. Commission, Bonus & Allowances. Target areas are Montg Co. & DC. Experience required. Resumes can be sent to or call 301-670-1444 Real Estate Local companies, Local candidates Get Connected


Silver Spring

Work with the BEST!

Be trained individually by one of the area’s top offices & one of the area’s best salesman with over 34 years. New & experienced salespeople welcomed.

Must R.S.V.P.


Call Bill Hennessy

3 301-388-2626 01-388-2626 • Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc. EOE

Join our Facebook page and Stay Connected

Maintenance Generalist The Village at Rockville - A National Lutheran Community, is seeking a full time and a part time Maintenance Generalists. The position requires previous experience working in a health care environment in building maintenance. Qualified applicants must have knowledge in preventive maintenance and repair, HVAC, painting, carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work. We offer excellent salary. Competitive benefits for the full time position. If interested, e-mail resume to or apply in person 7 days a week, 7am - 7pm at 9701 Veirs Drive, Rockville, MD 20850. EOE



Customer Service Representative


Comprint, one of the largest commercial publication printers in the Baltimore/Washington area, is looking for an experienced Printing Customer Service professional. We have terrific customers, and we need a customer service professional to make sure they receive the care and attention they deserve.

IMMEDIATE Position Avialable for Plumber. MUST have 2 yrs exp. Great hourly pay, commission, weekly bonus & insurance. Drug free, customer oriented, and motivated. Only qualified applicants apply. 301-670-1944 - Gaithersburg

The successful candidate will have a strong track record of success in printing AND customer service. The successful candidate will have a good working knowledge of MS Office, especially Excel, Outlook and Word. We’re looking for someone with good work ethic, good people skills, and strong organizational skills. Knowledge of electronic prepress (PhotoShop, InDesign, Quark Express, Illustrator, etc.) can be a big plus. Comprint Printing is part of Post Community Media, publisher of Gazette newspapers in suburban Maryland which is owned by The Washington Post. We own and operate a new state of the art printing plant located in Laurel, MD. We offer a competitive compensation and comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental, pension, 401(k) and tuition reimbursement. To apply, please e-mail your resume along with salary/earnings requirements to; EOE SKILLED TRADE


IMMEDIATE Position Avialable for NATE and/or Journeyman HVAC service technicians. MUST have 2 yrs exp. Great hourly pay, commission, weekly bonus & insurance. Drug free, customer oriented, and motivated. Only qualified applicants apply. 301-670-1944 - Gaithersburg

Recruiting is now Simple! Get Connected!


Provide non-medical care and companionship for seniors in their homes. Personal care, light housework, transportation, meal preparation. Must be 21+. Must have car and one year professional, volunteer, or personal experience Home Instead Senior Care To us it’s personal 301/588-9023 Call between 10am-4pm Mon-Fri


Work From Home

National Children’s Center Making calls Weekdays 9-4 No selling! Sal + bonus + benes.

Call 301-333-1900

Page B-14


Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Page B-15

Automotive Call 301-670-7100 or email


DECEMBER SNOW SALES DAYS!!! 04 Toyota Rav-4 $$

#3364498A, 4 Speed Auto, 2WD, Spectra Blue


07 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS #364333A, $ 5 Speed Manual, 1 $ Owner, 44k Miles


09 Toyota Camry LE $$

#355058A, 5 Speed Auto, 4-Door


11 Toyota Camry LE $$

#P8793, 6 Speed Auto, 29k Miles, 4DR, 1-Owner


04 Honda CR-V EX $$

#453007A, 4 Speed Auto, 1-Owner, 4WD


07 Toyota Sienna LE $$

#3364373A, 5 Speed Auto, 2WD, Arctic Frost Pearl


09 Volkswagen CC #R1702A, $ 6 Speed Auto, $ Sport Model


10 Toyota Prius III $$

#P8805, 4 Door, CVT Transmission, 45k miles


2012 Nissan Versa S

08MercuryGrandMarquisLS $$

#472145A, 4 Speed Auto, Silver Metallic


#E0263, 32K Miles, 4 Speed Auto, 4 Door Coupe


#329040A, Ent.Center, 4WD Sport Utility, Formal Black, 88K Miles


#426021A, 6 Speed Auto, 37,6K Miles, Taupe Gray Metallic

#N0270, 58K Miles, Navigation 6 Speed Auto

#326024A, Premium, M/T Car Coupe, 46K miles, 5 Speed


#N0271, 8k Miles, Sunroof, 6-Speed Auto

#N110008, 62k Miles, 4WD, Sport Utility



2009FordEscape Hybrid


#429003A,60.5kMiles, 1-Owner


#P8750, AWD, Electric Silver, Metallic, Certified




2009 Nissan Xterra X



2010 Volvo XC60 3.2L

2013 VW Passat SE




2011 Subaru Outback



2012 Toyota Highlander


2009 Chevy Silverado 1500 LTZ 4x4



2011 Volvo XC60 T6


2012 Volvo XC60

2012 Volkswagen Jetta

#E0278, 32K Mile, 6 Speed Auto, Gray Metallic.....................................

2008 Volvo S80

#P8842, 68k Miles, 3.2L, Blue Metallic....................................................

2011 Mazda 3i.................. $14,800 $14,800 2008 Toyota Tacoma............ $23,800 $23,800 #472137A, 4 Door, 19k Miles, 1-Owner, Graphite Mica #465002A, 5 SpeedAuto, 49k Miles, 1-Owner $24,800 2009 Toyota Venza.............. $16,800 $16,800 2013 Prius Plug-In.............. $24,800 #374533A, CVT Transmission, Blizzard Pearl, 1-Owner #378091A, 6 SpeedAuto, 1-Owner, Blue Green

#P8834, 103k Miles, 1 Owner, Shadow Blue Metallic..............................

2012 Hyundai Sonata LTD

#N0276, 6 Speed Auto, 22.5K Miles, 1-Owner, Gray Metallic.................





2013 Honda Civic E-XL

#E0211a, 72k Miles, 2.5L, Black, Turbo w/ Park Assist...........................

2009 Volvo XC90



2006 Volvo V70

2011 Toyota Camry LE......... $13,800 $13,800 2013 Honda Accord Sport..... $21,800 $21,800 #P8783, 6 SpeedAuto, 45K Miles, Magnetic Gray Metallic #364571A, CVT Transmission, 1-Owner, Hematite Metallic




2008 Ford Mustang GT

#E0277, 42K Mile, 4 Speed Auto, Polar White........................................

$12,500 2008 Toyota Tundra............ $19,800 $19,800 2010 Toyota Corolla LE........ $12,500 #P8841A,4SpeedAuto,31kMiles,1-Owner,DesertSand #369083A, 5 SpeedAuto, 4WD, Desert Sand Mica

#326082A, Navigation, 3K Mile, Crystal Black Pearl...............................

#P8847A, 29K Miles, Blizzard Pearl........................................................ #429002B, 11,421K Miles........................................................................


#327217C, 63K Miles..............................................................................


#P8825, 6 Speed Auto, Ice White, 4WD, 1-Owner, Certified...................


#327208A, 6 Speed Auto, Caspian Blue, Certified.................................


15401 Frederick Rd, Rockville, MD


15625 Frederick Rd (Rte 355) • Rockville, MD | OPEN SUNDAY




Selling Your Car just got easier! Log on to

Gazette.Net/Autos to place your auto ad!

As low as 29.95! $

#E0259, 5 Speed Auto, 38K Miles, Polished Slate

2008 Land Rover LR2

2012 Toyota Yaris

$11,800 2012 GMC Terrain SLE-1...... $19,800 $19,800 2011 Scion XD.................. $11,800 #355050A, 4 SpeedAuto, 4DR, 1-Owner, Espresso #460033A, 2WD, 6 SpeedAuto, 1-Owner, 45k Miles

1-888-831-9671 1-888-831-9671





2012 Mazda Mazda 6



See what it’s like to love car buying

#438356A, 96K Miles, 4WD

2008 Cadillac STS

2007 Toyota Camry LE......... $10,800 $10,800 2011 Toyota RAV-4............. $17,800 $17,800 #472097A, 5 SpeedAuto, Turquoise Metallic #363397A, 4 SpeedAuto, Metallic Silver, 1-Owner



2010 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ

13 Toyota Camry LE #R1738, $ 6 Speed Auto, 14.2k $

miles, 4 Door, 1 Owner

#N110003, 5 Speed Auto, Blue Metallic, Sunroof, 73K Miles


11 Ford Focus SE $$

#364474A, Auto, 4 Door, 1 Owner



2008 Honda Pilot SE

09HyundaiVeracruzLTD $$

#364523A, 6 Speed Auto, 1-Owner, Sport

2008 Volvo S60 2.5T

See what it’s like to love car buying.


Page B-16

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

’04 GMC SIERRA: 18kmi, 2 door reg cab p/u, V6, auto, Grey, exc cond, tilt wheel etc $7,300 Call: 301-351-2515

Page B-17



2006 CHEVY UPLANDER: 84K miles,

very good cond., MD Inspected, DVD/MP3, $4499 301-674-5011

Running or Not. Sell Your Car or Truck TODAY. Free Towing! Instant Offer: 1-888-545-8647




Your donation helps local families with food, clothing, shelter. Tax deductible. MVA licensed. LutheranMissionSociet 410-636-0123 or toll-free 1-877-7378567.




(301) 288-6009

Receive $1000 in Grocery/Restaurant coupons. Free Mammogram, Free Towing 24/7. 501(c)(3) United Breast Cancer Foundation 888-433-6199.

Sale Price: Nissan Rebate: NMAC Bonus Cash:

to advertise call 301.670.7100 or email



$14,995 -$500 -$500

SV Hatchback #11614 2 At This Price: VINS:370976, 370059

2013 NISSAN SENTRA S MSRP: $17,560 Sale Price: NMAC Bonus Cash:


#12013 2 At This Price: VINS: 794572, 797360

2014 NISSAN ALTIMA 2.5 S MSRP: $23,640

Place Your Vehicle for Sale online

Sale Price: Nissan Rebate: NMAC Bonus Cash:




#P8751A, Wolfsburg Edition, Leather, Sunroof, Manual

#346486A, Auto Transmission, Alloy Wheels, Sunroof


$19,495 -$500 -$500




2012 Nissan Altima #446003A, Automatic, 1-Owner, Low Miles

$27,995 -$3,000 -$1,500 -$500

$ G558432

2008 Nissan Altima 2.5S Coupe


2014 NISSAN MAXIMA S MSRP: $32,005


2012 Nissan Versa SL #346423A, Auto Transmission, Alloy Wheels, Bluetooth, Power Features



2003 Ford Thunderbird #N0275, Hard Top Convertible, Low Miles



With Bluetooth, Rear View Monitor #13114 2 At This Price: VINS: 154860, 155602

W/ Bluetooth, #22213 2 At This Price: VINS: 142237, 141453

Sale Price: Nissan Rebate: Nissan Bonus Cash: NMAC Bonus Cash:



#P8767,PWR, Mirrors, Lock, Remote Keyless Entry

$14,995 -$500


Sale Price: Nissan Rebate: NMAC Bonus Cash:


30 Days



2010 Nissan Versa Hatchback

$19,795 -$1,000 -$1,000


24/7 at


See what it’s like to love car buying.

2011 VW Jetta

2005 Chevrolet Colorado LS

#346249A, Auto, 2WD


Deals and Wheels







2010 Nissan Frontier #P8788, 4WD, Leather, Bluetooth, 1-Owner

#16114 2 At This Price: VINS: 436838, 446410

DARCARS NISSAN of of ROCKVILLE ROCKVILLE 15911 Drive • • Rockville, Rockville, MD MD (at (at Rt. Rt. 355 355 across across from fromKing KingFarm) Farm) 15911 Indianola Indianola Drive 888.824.9166 ••

Prices include all rebates and incentives. NMAC Bonus Cash requires financing through NMAC with approved credit. Prices Pricestax, include rebates incentives. NMAC Bonusand Cash requires financing through NMAC with approved credit.with exclude tags, all freight (carsand $780, trucks $725-$995), $200 processing charge. *Lease payments are calculated Prices exclude tax,$200 tags,processing freight (cars $810,and trucks $200 processing charge. valid only onthrough listed tax, tags, freight, charge first$845-$995), payment dueand at signing, and are valid withPrices tier one approval VINS. See dealer for details. Offer expires 12/17/2013. NMAC. Prices valid only on listed VINS. See dealer for details. Offer expires 10/22/2012.



2013 Nissan Cargo Van #E0283, Auto, Low Miles, 1-Owner



2010 Nissan Murano SL #P8790, 1-Owner, Leather, AWD


$ DARCARS NISSAN of ROCKVILLE 15911 Indianola Drive • Rockville, MD (at Rt. 355 across from King Farm)

888.805.8235 •


in print and online


36 $

NEW2 AVAILABLE: 2014#470004, COROLLA LE 470006

2 AVAILABLE: #470156, 470170



4 DR., 4 CYL., AUTO

NEW 2014 SCION XD 2 AVAILABLE: #453005, 453011

NEW 2013 HIGHLANDER 4X2 2 AVAILABLE: #363401, 363223






4 DR., AUTO, 4 CYL., INCL.




4 CYL., 4 DR., AUTO

NEW 2013 RAV4 LE 4X2 BASE 2 AVAILABLE: #364572, 364556

NEW 2014 CAMRY LE 2 AVAILABLE: #472138, 472071

36 Month Lease $


4 DR., 4 CYL., AUTO


2 AVAILABLE: #377729, 377730



2 AVAILABLE: #472091, 472090

0% FOR

4 DR., AUTO, 4 CYL.,









On 10 Toyota Models

See what it’s like to love car buying



AUTO, 4 CYL., 4 DR




15625 Frederick Rd (Rte 355) • Rockville, MD n OPEN SUNDAY n VISIT US ON THE WEB AT




Page B-18

Wednesday, December 11, 2013 o

03 Mitsubishi Lancer



#KP15883, AT, PW $667 OFF KBB

07 Chrysler Twn & Cntry $10,977

#AP03372R, PAMPERED, 65K! $996 OFF KBB

10 Ford Fusion SE


UNDER $10,995


12 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport $16,935

#KP07213, 12K, FAC WARR, $2187 OFF KBB


95 BMW 5-Series.............................$1,988

01 Infinity Q45.................................$6,935

09 GMC Sierra 1500 Cargo Van. . .$11,470

11 Honda Civic LX.........................$14,588

04 Dodge Intrepid SXT....................$5,450

04 Dodge Ram 1500 SLT.................$9,588

06 Hyundai Azera Ltd....................$11,988

12 Dodge Charger SE....................$18,745

05 Chevy Impala..............................$5,998

09 Scion TC Cpe...............................$9,997

#KP58509, MNRF, LTHR, P/OPTS, GREAT BUY! “Handyman” #KP02860, Nice! MNRF, PW/PLC, CD

#KP65991A, PW/PPLC/PMR, CC, CD, Don’t Miss!

03 Honda Element EX......................$6,495 #KP62182A, AT, AC, PW/PLC, Must See & Drive!




04 Toyota Sienna Ltd $9,998

#KP1537, Sharp 99K!! MNRF, LTHR/HTD/PWR Seat, P/OPTS #KP40271, Beauty! 20” Chrome, P/OPTS, CD

#O1492KP, Super Sharp! MNRF, AUTO, PW, CC, CD

06 Jeep Liberty Ltd.......................$10,588 #KP44532, 4WD, Gorgeous! NAV, MNRD, PW, CC, CD

#KR11890, Must See!! Tradesman Shelves, AC #KP32254, 53K!!, Wood Trim, MNRF, LTHR

07 Toyota Camry LE.......................$12,588

#KP09574, Red Beauty! PSEAT, PW/PLC, CC, CD

07 Honda Accord EX-L..................$13,489 #KP32745, V6, MNRF, LTHR, CD-6

#KP16976, PW/PLC/PMR, CC, CD


08 Chrysler Twn & Cntry Ltd........$19,990

#KP34550, Pampered! MNRF, DVD, LTHR, CAM

11 Buick Regal CXL Russelsheim....$20,988 #KP11537, Turbo, NAV, MNRF, LTHR

Olneygaz 121113