A new date for the meeting has been announced. Equity One will now make its presentation on Tuesday, March 18 at 7:30 p.m. in Whitman High School’s auditorium (7100 Whittier Blvd.).
The meeting is expected to last about one hour.
It will be the public’s first real glimpse of any specific plans for the area, which includes the Westwood Towers, Springhouse by Manor Care, Bowlmor Lanes, two Citgo stations, Giant Food-anchored Westwood Shopping Center and Westwood Center II.
Equity One bought the properties last year. The group’s architect has already said the redevelopment will require a new master plan for the area. The last Westbard Sector Plan was done in 1982.
Photo via Equity One
This weekend is a busy one in Bethesda and the rest of March offers a number of special events around the area.
Dance Bethesda Studio Night
Participating downtown Bethesda dance studios (see website)
Time: 7:00 p.m. — 10:30 p.m.
Dance Bethesda kicks off the weekend with free lessons and parties at downtown Bethesda dance studios from 7-10:30 p.m., Friday, March 7, 2014. Participants can learn steps and see demonstrations including ballroom, jazz, hip-hop and more dance styles.
America’s ‘Most Super Nanny’ Jo Frost Book Signing
Barnes and Noble (4801 Bethesda Avenue)
Time: 2:00 p.m. — 5:00 p.m.
Global parenting expert Jo Frost signs copies of her seventh book “Jo Frost’s Toddler Rules: Your 5-Step Guide to Shaping Proper Behavior”
UnCorked! An Evening of Extraordinary Wines To Benefit The Neediest Kids
Avenel Country Club (10000 Oaklyn Drive)
Time: 7:00 p.m. — 9:00 p.m.
The National Center for Children and Families (NCCF) invites you to join us in celebrating our newest program, The Neediest Kids (TNK) – an early intervention program serving 10 school districts in the Greater Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area.
Experience tastings of extraordinary wines from Opus, Justin, Freemark Abbey, Chausser, Lakoya, Penner Ash, and many more!
Meet Chef John Moeller, former Executive White House Chef to Presidents Clinton and Bush. Talk wine with Ben Giliberti, former Washington Post Wine Columnist. Mingle with other wine enthusiasts while sampling superb food and a special treat by Chef Moeller! Bid on a host of donated entertainment, dining, sports and travel items at our Silent Auction.
Dance Bethesda Concert
Round House Theatre (4545 East-West Highway)
Time: 8:00 p.m. — 11:00 p.m.
The 10th annual Dance Bethesda, a weekend celebrating dance, will feature a formal dance concert showcasing area companies at 8 p.m., Saturday, March 8, 2014. The event, produced by Bethesda Urban Partnership and the Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District, will take place at Round House Theatre, 4545 East-West Highway in downtown Bethesda. The performers/choreographers include: Agency 9 (hip-hop), Bethany Disque (contemporary), Christopher K. Morgan & Artists (contemporary), Company Danzante (contemporary), Company E (contemporary), Nomad Dancers (inspired by traditions of India, Persia, Central Asia, Middle East, and Turkey) and Word Dance Theater (modern dance). Tickets are available at www.bethesda.org for $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. Remaining tickets will also be available at the door.
The Bachelor Finale Viewing Party
Redwood (7121 Bethesda Lane)
Time: 6:00 p.m. — 10:00 p.m.
Join PerSei Apartments, On Tap Magazine and all the Hits 107.3 on Monday, March 10th to see who Juan Pablo chooses! We’ll be watching the finale on the big screen at Redwood restaurant in Bethesda. The evening includes complimentary appetizers, your first cocktail on us and a PerSei gift bag. Plus a rose for every guest!
The event is free of charge, but you must RSVP as space is limited. Check in begins at 6:00 and the screening begins at 8:00. To RSVP visit www.ontaponline.com/bachelor. You must be 21+ to attend.
Saturday, March 15
St. Patrick’s Day Live on the Plaza!
Chevy Chase Center (5463 Wisconsin Avenue)
Time: 10:00 a.m. — 6:00 p.m.
Enjoy St. Patrick’s day live on the plaza with treats, bagpipes, and dancers at Chevy Chase Center.
Tuesday, March 25
BCC Chamber of Commerce NextExec Fundraising Pool Tournament
Rock Bottom Brewery (7900 Norfolk Avenue)
Time: 5:30 p.m. — 7:30 p.m.
Join the B-CC Chamber NextExec Committee on March 25th at 5:30pm at Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery for their 2nd annual Pool Tournament! Attendees may choose to participate in the tournament or just come to networking and cheer on the tournament. Players will be paired with a partner to make a team, and prizes will be awarded to winning teams!
As part of the NextExecs commitment to giving back to their community, all proceeds from this event will benefit CollegeTracks.
Cost: $12 / Members: $10
No school on Tuesday means the Westbard redevelopment presentation scheduled for tonight at Walt Whitman High School has been postponed.
Equity One, the developer that hopes to redevelop much of the Westbard section of Bethesda, hoped to present its design principles Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at the high school. But the winter weather caused MCPS to cancel classes and close school buildings for the second straight day.
It would have been the public’s first real glimpse of any specific plans for the area, which includes the Westwood Towers, Springhouse by Manor Care, Bowlmor Lanes, two Citgo stations, Giant Food-anchored Westwood Shopping Center and Westwood Center II.
A spokesperson said Equity One is trying to reschedule the presentation for as soon as possible.
Photo via Westbard Vision/Equity One
Believe it or not, baseball season is almost here.
The Bethesda Big Train season starts a bit later than the pros, but the collegiate summer league team will again host its annual Celebrity Softball Classic at Shirley Povich Field (10600 Westlake Dr.) in April.
This year’s game is set for Saturday April 12. The FanFest, including rides, games, a Washington Redskins-themed auction, giveaways and free food for the first 500 people, will start at 5:30 p.m. The game will start at 7 p.m.
The game matches up athletes against the media personalities who cover them. The Athletes team, made up of a number of Redskins, former Redskins and former Maryland Terrapins basketball forward Byron Mouton, has won each of the first two games.
This year’s game will feature an interesting switch, as former Redskins tight end Chris Cooley — now permanently retired and working for the team’s radio operation — will coach and play for the Media team.
The proceeds raised from the game will go to the Big Train’s foundation — which improves and builds baseball fields in D.C.-area communities — former Redskin Lorenzo Alexander’s ACES Foundation, The Brave Dave Open, and the Washington Redskins Alumni Association.
Tickets are $10. For more information, visit the event site.
Image via Bethesda Big Train
Folks in Bethesda will get to see the three Democratic candidates for county executive in action next week, as the trio is set for a debate on Friday, March 7.
The Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce and Bethesda Magazine are putting on a traditional debate featuring County Executive Isiah Leggett, Councilmember Phil Andrews and former County Executive Doug Duncan from 8:15 a.m.-9:45 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Bethesda (1 Bethesda Metro Center).
Bethesda Magazine political reporter Louis Peck will moderate.
Also next week, county executive and County Council candidates will gather in Silver Spring for a candidate forum on renters’ issues.
The Montgomery County Renters Alliance (a BethesdaNow.com advertiser) is hosting the free forum from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 5 at the Silver Spring Civic Center (1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring).
The last day to file for the June 2014 primary is Tuesday, meaning we’ll have a clear picture of all of the races.
Duncan, who ran the county for three terms before Leggett took over in 2006, has consistently argued he’s a stronger leader than the two-term incumbent. Leggett has touted his fiscal stewardship during the Great Recession and put some of the blame for the county’s financial difficulties during that time on Duncan’s spending. Leggett has also said the county is in much better economic shape today because of his leadership.
Andrews, who will not take campaign contributions from interest groups, is campaigning as a change of pace from the two county Democratic heavyweights.
The Chamber debate on March 7 will include a networking and continental breakfast starting at 7:30 a.m. Registration is $35 and $25 for Chamber members.
Jeni Grant and a Rockville-dog education nonprofit called Your Dog’s Friend are hosting the event from 1 p.m.-3:30 p.m. at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church (6030 Grosvenor Lane).
Anxiety issues are common in dogs rescued from puppy mills and hoarding cases, according to event organizers.
The workshop will focus on how to help dogs with neophobia (the fear of new things, especially new foods) Generalized Anxiety Disorder and doggie PTSD:
Some of you have dogs that are afraid in their own homes. They may stay in their “safe” place, like under the desk or on the couch, instead of venturing out to other parts of the house. Stairs, ceiling fans, the dishwasher — all scary. When visitors come over, your dog hides. Maybe, he doesn’t want to leave your home to go outside, whether for a walk or in your yard. Going to the vet or getting in the car is terrifying. Our speaker will explain how to help these special needs dogs. You care enough and are patient enough to help them succeed in life. In return, you get to watch them blossom into dogs they may never have become without you. Speaker: Jeni Grant, CPDT-KA (www.trainyourbestfriend.com)
CPDT-KA means Certified Professional Dog Trainer — Knowledge Accessed.
The event is free and open to the public. Your Dog’s Friend is asking those planning to come to register in advance. It doesn’t appear your dog’s presence at the workshop is necessary.
Photo of Jeni Grant via Train Your Best Friend
Walt Whitman High School students helped raise more than $91,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society last February.
This year, they want to break that mark.
The school, which is again taking part in the Society’s High School Challenge, is hosting an all-night dance fundraiser on Saturday and a beard competition next week to close out its 2014 fundraising efforts.
The Saturday event is called bRAVE, a rave-like dance that goes on for seven hours with foods provided by local restaurants. It’s set for 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. in Whitman’s main gym. It raised more than $20,000 last year. Tickets are $25 in advance and $35 at the door. Waivers are required.
Next week, student volunteers and teachers will grow out the “most creative” beards possible and bucket for donations to see who has Whitman’s best beard.
Video via Whitman SGA
A month-long martini competition between Bethesda Row restaurants is coming back for a third year this March to celebrate the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.
March Martini Madness will match up 10 martini creations from 10 restaurants: American Tap Room, Assaggi, Cafe Deluxe, Jaleo, Lebanese Taverna, Mon Ami Gabi, Mussel Bar, Parker’s, Raku and Redwood.
The contenders will be whittled down week by week on Bethesda Row’s Facebook page until one martini is crowned win. Those who vote on Facebook can enter win a $500 dining certificate for up to 10 guests from one of the participating restaurants.
Above is the Nothing But Net (from Cafe Deluxe), appropriately named Cuse Orange Crush (from Parker’s) and the Purple Cloud (from Raku).
The contest starts March 1 and all cocktails featured will be at happy hour prices all day, all month long.
Photos via Shauna Alexander/Bethesda Row
Stella Artois is looking for the best bartender in Montgomery County with a competition this Sunday in Woodmont Triangle.
Hanaro Restaurant and Lounge (7820 Norfolk Ave.) will host the event from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. An “elite group of competing bartenders,” will be judged by a panel for their creativity, efficiency and presentation. “Qualified bartenders” must submit their request to be entered by 11 p.m. on Saturday by sending an email to the organizer.
The event of course will include product samples and giveaways from Stella, happy hour prices from Hanaro and free hors d’oeuvres.
The competition will consist of three rounds: flair, speed pouring and mixology. The best overall score from the three rounds will win. The cocktail judged as the best by those in attendance will be featured at Hanaro in March and named after the winner.
The overall contest winner will get a $500 cash prize and plaque. Second and third place winners will get smaller cash prizes.
Check out the event page here.
Planners working on downtown Bethesda’s new master plan will host a pair of meetings focused on what residents, business owners, developers and others would like to see the area look like in 20 years.
The Montgomery County Planning Department will host another open house, this time a Planning and Design Workshop from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 1 at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School (4301 East-West Highway).
Participates will work in small groups to give their ideas and a future meeting will focus on specific areas and issues that come up in the workshop.
For more information, visit the Bethesda Downtown Plan website.
A group of some of the most civic-minded folks in Montgomery County are coming to Bethesda this weekend to develop a Ride On bus app, service for making public information requests and database of Maryland lobbying activities.
The Montgomery County Civic Federation, Montgomery County Taxpayers League and the Parents’ Coalition of Montgomery County together with a grant from the nonprofit Sunlight Foundation will put on the two-day “Great Montgomery Hackathon” at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center (4805 Edgemoor Lane).
“One of the goals is to get people interested in civic activism to work with the IT programmers. This seemed like a good way to get those two groups of people together,” said Civic Fed member and organizer Paula Bienenfeld. “We’ll see how far we get by Sunday afternoon and hopefully set up something more regular out of it.”
The free event is open to civic activists, citizens, software developers and anyone else interested.
From 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, those people will work together to create four already outlined software programs and any more that come up:
- Transit – Help us build a multilingual mobile web app that will help people find Ride On bus stops as quickly and easily as possible.
- Demographics – Create a tool to help people location important areas and locations on a map and find out the demographic makeup of the area using data from the US Census Bureau.
- Public Information – Start a service that will help people submit Maryland Public Information Act (MPIA) requests and track the responses, opening up them up to the public.
- Follow the Money – Help create a usable, easily searchable database from State of Maryland pdf files on lobbying activities.
The idea of a hackathon isn’t new, not even in Montgomery County, where last year officials introduced the concept with a one-day event in Rockville. County officials hope to expand on that program with another hackathon soon.
This weekend’s event serves another purpose. Bienenfeld said her impression of civic participation in the county is that it’s isolated to specific issues in each community.
She’s hoping the hackathon is a way to foster sustainable interest on a county level. The Civic Fed is an umbrella group of a number of neighborhood and local civic associations.
“I know this is not just in Montgomery County, this issue of sustainment,” Bienenfeld said. “How do you keep people interested in being active, involved past their particular issue? Hopefully, this is a way for people to get together and see what’s going on in other parts of the county.”
Those who have little or no knowledge of computer coding shouldn’t feel left out, Bienenfeld said. There will be plenty of brainstorming and data entry work to be done.
Image via Montgomery County Civic Federation
The nonprofit and business incubator will host a slew of green-minded organizations looking for interns interested in the environmental sector.
The event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Bethesda Green headquarters (4825 Cordell Ave., second floor above Capital One Bank).
Groups looking for interns will include the Student Conservation Association, EarthShare, Calleva Outdoor Adventure Camp & Farm and Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection.
For more information, visit Bethesda Green’s website.
Image via Bethesda Green
High school dropouts, a blind painter, arm wrestlers, firefighting and the tango are the subjects of the five short documentaries selected for this year’s Bethesda Film Festival.
The event, organized by the Bethesda Urban Partnership, will run on two nights this year after last year’s inaugural Film Fest attracted a sellout crowd.
Tickets are $10 each. The films will screen starting at 8 p.m. on Friday, March 21 and Saturday, March 22 at Imagination Stage (4908 Auburn Ave.).
The documentaries are all from local filmmakers, including one — Isabelle Carbonell — who participated in last year’s event:
Doing it for Me (24:12 minutes)
Film by Precious Lambert and Leah Edwards, students in the youth documentary program at Sitar Arts Center, Washington, D.C.; Connor Drake, Producer; Brandon Kramer and Lance Kramer, Executive Producers
Jessica and Victoria are young women in Washington, D.C. who dropped out of high school for personal and family reasons. Doing it for Me offers an intimate and compassionate glimpse into the real experiences of high school dropouts.
Line of Sight (6:40 minutes)
Film by Stephen Menick, three-time Emmy-nominated Writer-Producer-Director based in DC.
John Bramblitt is a painter. He is also blind. He is also a genius. Personal despair is turned into an inspiring vision of beauty and life as John Bramblitt learns to express his talent for painting – without sight.
Smackdown for Charity (12:00 minutes)
Film by Scott Sowers, Director; Misty Ray, Producer
Competition, charity and characters crash together as the DC Lady Arm Wrestlers battle each other in a test of strength. The competition is real, the characters are over the top and the proceeds go to charities that benefit women and children.
The Bottom Line (10:04 minutes)
Film by Mark Burchick, Thesis Film, Towson University; Joe Brown and Brian Plow, Producers
The Bottom Line documents the preparations taken by a Howard County-based firefighter as he prepares for his first child and reflects on his high-risk career.
When She Dances with Me (6:00 minutes)
Film by Isabelle Carbonell, Director/Cinematographer; Sarah Cannon, Editor
Nadim and Mira love tango, and Nadim and Mira love each other. This Lebanese couple discovers Argentine Tango in the Middle East: an unusual marriage of passion, dance, geography and joy.
For more information and tickets, visit the event page.
Photo from “Line of Sight,” via Bethesda Urban Partnership
Before they head to the Planning Board for the first formal step of the process, county planners will hold another public meeting in Bethesda on the area’s master plan rewrite.
Planners will post their recommended “Scope of Work” online on Monday, Jan. 27 before coming to the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center (4805 Edgemoor Lane) at 6:30 p.m. that day to present it and answer community questions.
Once approved by the Planning Board, the Scope of Work will formally set which issues planning staff will delve into in its rewrite of the 1994 Bethesda Central Business District Sector Plan. The Sector Plan provides zoning recommendations and development strategies for downtown Bethesda.
Among the most talked about issues in previous meetings have been Bethesda’s lack of public civic space, a perceived divide between the older Woodmont Triangle section of town and Bethesda Row, traffic issues and the lack of market interest in new or existing office buildings.
Planners will also talk about the schedule for the process, which includes more public meetings and Planning Board hearings before the new Sector Plan is sent off to the County Council for approval.
Photo via Montgomery County Planning Department
A cocktail reception and fundraiser on Friday at the Round House Theatre (4545 East-West Highway) will hopefully soften the blow.
Katey Boerner, executive director of the Glen Echo Park Partnership, said the group hopes to raise a few thousand dollars at the event, hosted by Councilmember Roger Berliner and County Executive Isiah Leggett.
Montgomery County created the Partnership in 2002 as a nonprofit to operate a dance program, resident artists studios, two children’s theater companies, an environmental education program, an arts workshop program and the historic 1921 Dentzel Carousel on the Glen Echo Park grounds.
But when Congress couldn’t agree on a federal budget deal last fall, the National Park Service determined Glen Echo Park had to be closed.
The Partnership and Montgomery County fought that decision, but two weeks after the shutdown began the Glen Echo Park Partnership had already lost thousands in missed event revenue and space rental fees for weddings and other celebrations that had to be moved.
“People were very accommodating, but in the end, even if you push people to another show or another class, you lose two-and-a-half weeks,” Boerner said. “There were some hard things. If people are getting married, they’re getting married. If there’s a dance — and we had a big dance blues festival that had to go somewhere else — you can’t replace that.”
The event Friday, which will run from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., is free, though a $25 donation is suggested.
It will include door prizes, music, drinks (like the “Shutdown Sangria”) and is meant to be a celebration of Glen Echo Park’s cultural contribution to Montgomery County.
Boerner said the Partnership has raised about $18,000 in donations since the shutdown and hopes to raise about another $5,000 from Friday’s event.
The Pyramid Atlantic Art Center will help design a Glen Echo Park t-shirts for all guests. Boerner said after Berliner offered to host a fundraiser, Round House offered its lobby space for the event, since Glen Echo Park’s larger venues are unheated.
“Throughout this, there have been a number of arts organizations that have been so helpful and generous,” Boerner said.
She also said the Partnership has had discussions with the National Park Service about keeping Glen Echo open in case of a similar scenario.
“They’ve made the judgement that they have core functions at Glen Echo that they don’t have at other places, core staff that are integral to the park functioning,” Boerner said. “I think that in the future we would probably have some agreement for how to keep it open.”
More information on Friday’s event: Glen Echo Park, Open for Creativity