by Aaron Kraut — November 17, 2014 at 1:45 pm 0

Here are a few upcoming events from the BethesdaNow.com calendar. If you’d like to see your event featured, fill out our event submission form. Also, please check out the event calendar to see all that is going on:


Catch Me If You Can poster, Whitman High SchoolCatch Me If You Can
Walt Whitman High School 7100 Whittier Boulevard
Time: 7:00 p.m. — 9:30 p.m.

Walt Whitman High School Drama Department presents a rousing rendition of the musical comedy CATCH ME IF YOU CAN, written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. Performances are scheduled for November 20-22 at 7:00 p.m.

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN is a stage musical based on the Dreamworks motion picture starring Tom Hanks and Leonardo DiCaprio. The story of CATCH ME IF YOU CAN follows Frank Abagnale, Jr., who as a teenager ran away from home in search of the glamorous life, and successfully posed as several different high-level professionals. CATCH ME IF YOU CAN is just pure fun — it’s a splashy, high-energy trip back to the 60s. With professionally choreographed dance numbers, a live pit orchestra, and a 64-member technical crew, this show is a spectacle not to be missed! So pack your bags and join Whitman’s Jet Set for an unforgettable evening of frolic and fun!


Music Box Series, StrathmoreAll About Bears
The Music Center at Strathmore 5301 Tuckerman Lane
Time: 10:00 a.m. — 10:30 a.m.

Bring your favorite teddy bears and join the BSO in learning about our favorite fuzzy animals. BSO Music Box is a new concert series created for babies and toddlers 6 months to 3 years and their families. Hosted by acclaimed actress, dancer and storyteller Maria Broom, the Music Box Series gives your budding music-lover the chance to explore music through highly engaging and interactive performances. Each half-hour concert features the musical talents of a small ensemble of BSO musicians performing classical and children’s songs to develop musicality, creativity, coordination and literacy. 


by Aaron Kraut — November 14, 2014 at 2:50 pm 164 1 Comment

Photo via BUP

Bethesda Urban Partnership’s annual ice sculpting display, choral group show and visit from Santa will return to Veterans Park (corner of Norfolk and Woodmont Avenues) on Saturday, Dec. 6.

The ice sculpting presentation will start at 1 p.m., followed by choral performances from local school groups and the visit from Santa — who will have treats for children.

The free event will feature groups from the Academy of the Holy Cross, Garrett Park Elementary, Oneness-Family School, Our Lady of Lourdes, Rockville High School and Westbrook Elementary.

For more information, visit the event page.

Photo via BUP

by Aaron Kraut — November 13, 2014 at 12:15 pm 276 2 Comments

The exterior of the PerSei apartment building on Grand Park Avenue in Pike & Rose

One of the first major redevelopment projects in White Flint is celebrating the opening of its first phase with a ribbon cutting ceremony and first annual “holiday tree lighting festival.”

Pike & Rose, the massive mixed-use project from Rockville-based developer Federal Realty, will host the ribbon cutting at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday.

Federal CEO and President Don Wood is expected to be joined by a number of elected officials to make official the opening of a number of new restaurants, apartment units, retail shops and entertainment venues on the former site of the Mid-Pike Plaza Shopping Center.

The company announced two weeks ago it had started work on the second phase of the project, which will add more mixed-use development and a high-rise Hilton hotel below luxury condos.

On Friday, Nov. 21, Pike & Rose will host the tree lighting festival, complete with a kids crafting station, stilt walkers, singing groups and reindeer ponies available for photo ops.

The event will run from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Pike & Rose is located at 11580 Old Georgetown Rd.

by Aaron Kraut — November 12, 2014 at 3:20 pm 203 2 Comments

Photo via Turkey Chase

It’s only two weeks until Thanksgiving, meaning it’s also only two weeks until almost 10,000 runners take over Wisconsin Avenue and Old Georgetown Road.

The 32nd Annual Turkey Chase is set for Thanksgiving morning (Nov. 27) and will again include thousands of runners from around the area in a 10K race and 2-mile fun run/walk through the heart of Bethesda.

Start time is 8:30 a.m.

Runners can register here and find more information here. Until the day of the race, registration is $45 for the 10K, $20 for the two-mile and $10 for the 50-meter Kid’s Run.

The YMCA Bethesda-Chevy Chase and Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rotary Club are also accepting donations. The two groups have organized the event since 1992.

The race route will start at the YMCA (9401 Old Georgetown Rd.) before heading east on Cedar Lane, threading through the Alta Vista neighborhood, turning south on Rockville Pike/Wisconsin Avenue and back north to the finish line — also at the YMCA.

Locals can expect multiple lanes of Wisconsin Avenue and Old Georgetown Road to be closed for a couple hours starting roughly at 8:30 a.m.

Photo via Turkey Chase

by Aaron Kraut — November 12, 2014 at 12:30 pm 307 0

Photo via St. Jane de Chantal Christmas Bazaar

Believe it or not, this weekend might mark the first Santa sighting of the season in Bethesda.

Mr. and Mrs. Claus are expected to take part in Saturday’s 9th Annual St. Jane de Chantal Christmas Bazaar, set for 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. at the 9525 Old Georgetown Rd. church.

The Bazaar (a BethesdaNow.com advertiser) will include 37 local vendors selling jewelry, holiday decor, vintage collectibles, furnishings and other gifts and accessories.

Two of Montgomery County’s most popular food trucks — Go Fish! and Linda’s Luncheonette — will be at the event for anybody looking for lunch and Bethesda nursery and garden center American Plant has donated dozens of holiday-themed plants that will be for sale.

The Bazaar also will include a thrift shop, children’s book fair and bake sale. All proceeds will benefit the Home & School Association.

Photo via St. Jane de Chantal Christmas Bazaar

by Aaron Kraut — November 10, 2014 at 3:15 pm 1 Comment

Veteran's Park, Woodmont Triangle

The Kiwanis Club of Bethesda will host its 55th Annual Veterans Day Observance on Tuesday at Veteran’s Park in Woodmont Triangle.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen will be among the elected officials and local leaders to pay tribute to our nation’s veterans when the ceremony starts at 10:45 a.m.

Veteran’s Park, between Woodmont and Norfolk Avenues in Bethesda, is home to a memorial honoring local veterans.

For more Veterans Day events and closings, check out our post from last week.

by Aaron Kraut — November 6, 2014 at 1:10 pm 0

The Abe Lincoln Racing President poses with Nationals closer Drew Storen (right) at least year's Big Train Holiday Auction, photo via Big Train/Lisa A. Kammerman

Bethesda’s collegiate baseball summer league team will be back at the DoubleTree Bethesda this month for its annual Holiday Auction.

The Bethesda Big Train and BCC Baseball will host the auction, which has raised more than $600,000 for local ballfields since the event started in 1999, from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 18.

ESPN commentator and Bethesda native Tim Kurkjian will again appear at the event, which includes an auction of baseball memorabilia, event tickets and restaurant gift cards — plus giveaways and a buffet-style dinner.

Joining Kurkjian will be University of Maryland baseball coach John Szefc, who last season guided the Terps to the program’s best season ever. Not to be outdone will be the George Washington Racing President.

The Big Train, a nonprofit started by Bethesda’s Bruce Adams, hopes to raise $50,000 at this year’s event for the ballfield improvement project.

For more information, visit the event page.

Photo via Big Train/Lisa A. Kammerman

by Aaron Kraut — November 5, 2014 at 10:05 am 282 0

Newt and Callista Gingrich, via Gingrich ProductionsTwo decades ago, Republicans drubbed Democrats in a mid-term election to take back control of the U.S. House and Senate.

On Wednesday, the day after a similar Republican drubbing in this year’s midterm, the man at the forefront of the 1994 “Republican Revolution” will be signing books at the Barnes & Noble in Bethesda (4801 Bethesda Ave.).

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and his wife Callista will appear at the bookstore starting at 7 p.m. to sign two books — Mrs. Gingrich’s new children’s book, “From Sea to Shining Sea” and Mr. Gingrich’s new policy book, “Breakout.”

The book preview gives a rundown of five things “you’ll learn” by reading it:

  • Why environmental extremists cling to the myth of “peak oil,” and how the fracking revolution is about to make America the world’s leading oil producer
  • How personalized healthcare–radically individualized treatments made possible by advances in genetics–and regenerative medicine could wipe out our most feared diseases, and why they’re on a collision course with Obamacare
  • How self-driving cars are on the verge of making traffic jams–and traffic deaths–a thing of the past, unless regulators wreck them before they leave the lot
  • Why a one-size-fits-all education will become a historical curiosity, unless the teachers’ unions and professional academicians succeed in preserving the current dysfunctional systems
  • How NASA–once the repository of American dreams of the future–became a textbook case of death by bureaucracy
    Americans don’t have to settle for a shrunken future. We can escape from the prison of the past into a future of undreamed of opportunity and abundance. All we need is the courage to break out.

Photo via Gingrich Productions

by Aaron Kraut — October 30, 2014 at 11:40 am 414 0

Union Jack's of BethesdaThere are a number of Halloween events around town this weekend for those who have outgrown neighborhood trick-or-treating (and even for those who haven’t):

Bethesda Row celebrates Halloween a night early –  About 40 businesses and restaurants in one of downtown Bethesda’s most popular areas will offer trick-or-treating on Halloween eve.

From 5 p.m.-7 p.m. on Thursday, the stores will offer deals, live entertainment and trick-or-treating for the kids. There will also be a drawing for a $100 gift certificate to the Paper Source.

Nightmare on St. Elmo Street – Union Jack’s (4915 St Elmo Ave.) gets the prize for best event name, plus the Woodmont Triangle bar will be offering specials and costume prizes on both Thursday and Friday nights.

A Captain Jack Sparrow-style Halloween dance party – Dance Bethesda (8227 Woodmont Ave.) is looking for people willing to walk the plank at its pirate-themed session of dance lessons and performances starting at 8 p.m. on Friday. The event costs $15 per person and tickets should be purchased in advance.

Monster Bash at the Doubletree – A few doors down from Dance Bethesda, the DoubleTree Bethesda (8120 Wisconsin Ave.) will put on its “Monster Bash,” event. For $10, guests get a live DJ and dance floor, cash bars, a costume contest and two movie theaters showing horror films. The event starts at 9 p.m.

Costume contest at 4935 – Music and a costume contest are on the agenda at 4935 Bar & Kitchen (4935 Cordell Ave.). Entry is free all night. Festivities start at 10 p.m. and will include a costume contest with prizes for the funniest, sexiest and most original costumes.

Fireball and games at Caddies – Caddies on Cordell (4922 Cordell Ave.) will feature Halloween-inspired Fireball cocktails, $2 Pumpkin Spice shooters, a costume contest, prizes and other giveaways from 4 p.m. to close on Friday.

by Aaron Kraut — October 30, 2014 at 10:25 am 162 1 Comment

Talbert's beer and wine store in Westbard, Flickr photo by ehpien

What is a charrette?

It’s the question often overheard from residents attending Planning Department events, where the concept has become a staple of the department’s outreach efforts.

Starting Monday, Nov. 10, planners will offer a series of charrettes aimed at figuring out what the Westbard area of Bethesda should look like over the next 25-30 years.

Residents, business owners and property owners are invited to drop in to a morning walking tour, stop by an open house or attend an evening session at Walt Whitman High School.

The definition of charrette is “a meeting in which all stakeholders in a project attempt to resolve conflicts and map solutions together.”

With residents already wary of new residential development that might come from new property owner Equity One, that probably won’t happen over the course of one week. But planners are hoping to get as much input as possible before proceeding with their sector plan rewrite:

The PlanWestbard Community Charrette will take place during the week of November 10; a full schedule of meetings is posted online at www.montgomeryplanning.org/planwestbard. Staff will be on hand to answer questions and provide insight into the Sector Plan process from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.Westwood II (5110 Ridgefield Rd, Bethesda, MD). Evening presentations will be held during the week at the Walt Whitman High School cafeteria (7100 Whittier Blvd, Bethesda, MD) from 6 – 9 p.m. The final presentation of the completed Concept Plan will be held at Westland Middle School (5511 Massachusetts Ave., Bethesda, MD) from 7 – 9 p.m.

Charrette Schedule At A Glance:
Monday, November 10 – Walking Tours will be conducted in the community at 10 a.m. and noon starting at Westwood II.  Charrette Open House hours will be held from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Westwood II. Attend the PlanWestbard Visioning Session at Walt Whitman High School starting at 6 p.m.

Tuesday, November 11 – Observance of Veterans Day (no charrette activities)

Wednesday, November 12 – A “Sunrise Series” meeting will be held for business owners at 7 a.m. at Westwood II.  Charrette Open House hours will follow until 5 p.m. at Westwood II. The Framework Concept will be presented at Walt Whitman High School from 6 to 9 p.m.

Thursday, November 13 - A “Sunrise Series” meeting will be held for all stakeholders at 7 a.m. at Westwood II followed by Charrette Open House hours until 5 p.m. The community will be asked to give feedback on the preferred options for the Framework Concept at Walt Whitman High School from 6 to 9 p.m.

Friday, November 14 -The community is invited to drop in at Westwood II during the day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to talk with Montgomery Planning Department staff as they refine the Concept Plan.

Monday, November 17 – Planners will be working on the results of the charrette in preparation for Tuesday’s evening presentation of the Completed Concept Plan at Westland Middle School.

Tuesday, November 18 – Planners will summarize the results of the charrette and its influence on the plan at Westland Middle School from 7 to 9 p.m.

About the Westbard Sector Plan:
The existing WestbardSector Plan is one of the oldest plans still in use in Montgomery County, having last been revised in 1982. It is now being updated at the direction of the Montgomery County Council to keep pace with the times and changes in the area.

by Aaron Kraut — October 22, 2014 at 12:25 pm 0

Sara Sulzbach, right, with family members at last year's Candy Cane City 5K, Photo via Hope Connections For Cancer SupportNine months after her breast cancer was determined to be in remission, Sara Sulzbach will be surrounded by 40 family members and close friends when she races in next month’s Candy Cane City 5K in Chevy Chase.

Sulzbach was diagnosed with an advanced stage of breast cancer in the fall of 2012 — at the age of 43. The Silver Spring resident underwent 130 medical procedures and, perhaps just as important, hooked up with the team at Hope Connections for Cancer Support in Bethesda.

The nonprofit, which moved to the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) campus at 9650 Rockville Pike last year, provides weekly and monthly support groups, gentle yoga courses, knitting, stich, chat sessions and other free programming meant to provide emotional help for cancer patients.

Sulzbach took part in the nonprofit’s Pink Ribbon Pilates class and attended group meetings for a year-and-a-half.

Now, she’s training for the 5K, set for Saturday, Nov. 9. She also ran in last year’s event, while still undergoing cancer treatment.

The race will mark her one-year point as a cancer survivor and she’ll have that group of family and friends with her as part of the “Sara’s New & Improved Rack Pack” team.

Hope Connections will also have a team in the 5K. For more information, visit the group’s website.

All donations will help people affected by cancer through the nonprofit, which provides its programming free of charge.

Photo via Hope Connections For Cancer Support

by Aaron Kraut — October 20, 2014 at 3:25 pm 498 2 Comments

Pedestrian plaza at Gallery Bethesda, via Gallery Bethesda

One of Woodmont Triangle’s new apartment buildings will turn its pedestrian plaza into an outdoor beer garden on Saturday.

The Gallery Bethesda, which opened earlier this year at 4800 Auburn Ave., is hosting an Oktoberfest Biergarten celebration from 2 p.m.-5 p.m., with music, food, prizes, cornhole and, of course, beer. Attendees must be 21 or older.

The 17-story, 234-unit apartment building from developer Donohoe hopes to show off its plaza, which features permanent outdoor sculptures and an expansive wall mural by a local artist. The apartment is also hoping to sell some units. The free event will include building tours and waived application fees.

Bratwursts, potato latkes and pretzels will be provided by nearby restaurant 4935 Bar & Kitchen. The Aria, the combination deli, convenience store and dry cleaner that opened on the ground floor of The Gallery, will provide beers and ciders.

For more information, visit the building’s Facebook page.

Photo via Gallery Bethesda

by Aaron Kraut — October 20, 2014 at 1:20 pm 247 1 Comment

Bethesda Row trick-or-treat, via Bethesda RowAbout 40 businesses and restaurants will offer a Bethesda Row version of trick-or-treating next week.

From 5 p.m.-7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 30, the stores will offer deals, live entertainment and trick-or-treating for the kids. There will also be a drawing for a $100 gift certificate to the Paper Source.

American Tap Room, 100 Montaditos, Aveda, Bethesda Bagels, Bluemercury, Bonobos, Calypso St. Barth, Capital Teas, Cava Grill, City Sports, Cork & Fork, Dolcezza, Equinox, Ginger, Haagen-Dazs, Icebreaker, J.McLaughlin, Jaleo, Kidville, Le Creuset, Lebanese Taverna, Lucy, Luke’s Lobster, Lululemon Athletica, Make Meaning, Mamma Lucia, Mon Ami Gabi, mussel Bar, Paper Source, Pink Palm, Quartermaine, Raku, Redwood, Roosters, Sassanova, Secolari, ShopHouse, Upstairs at Bethesda Row, Vino Volo and Wear it Well will all take part.

by Aaron Kraut — October 17, 2014 at 3:25 pm 3 Comments

Western Avenue in Friendship Heights, Flickr photo by ehpienMonday’s monthly meeting of a local citizens advisory board will feature a special round-table discussion with neighbors on the other side of the District line.

The county-led Western Montgomery County Citizens Advisory Board will meet with three D.C. Advisory Neighborhood Commissions (3D, 3E and 3G) to talk about “topics of common interest,” hear from Montgomery and D.C. planners on transportation links across Western Avenue and get an update from police commanders.

Members of the Montgomery group, made up of residents and business owners from Bethesda, Chevy Chase, Potomac and Rockville, must be confirmed by the county executive. The group regularly gets updates from county and other agency officials on local issues, then typically weighs in in the form of a letter or Council testimony.

D.C.’s ANCs largely play the same role, though ANC commissioners hold sway on the approval or disapproval of liquor licenses.

The meeting is open to the public and will take place from 7 p.m.-9 p.m. Monday at the Village of Friendship Heights (4433 South Park Ave.).

Among the D.C. neighborhoods represented by the ANCs taking part are Chevy Chase D.C., the Palisades, Spring Valley, Wesley Heights, Friendship Heights and Tenleytown.

Flickr photo by ehpien

by Aaron Kraut — October 17, 2014 at 12:35 pm 0

The Music Center at Strathmore, Flickr photo via Bill in DC

Before Strathmore’s brand new Music Center opened to the public, it opened to thousands of local elementary school students.

A decade later, the North Bethesda venue is celebrating 10 years of student concerts with a new music genre.

From Tuesday-Friday next week, Strathmore will shut down to make way for more than 11,000 MCPS 5th graders who will hear a new Blues concert thanks in part to nonprofit JazzReach. Until this year, the annual MCPS student concerts have exclusively featured classical music in partnership with the National Philharmonic:

The musicians onstage personify racial and gender diversity–Strathmore and MCPS were insistent that performers be inclusive and representative of the diversity in their community. The concerts were developed in close collaboration with MCPS music curriculum experts, addressing key concepts 5th graders will master during the school year. All elementary music teachers have pre-concert lessons to prepare students for their experience and strengthen their understanding of concepts contained in the program. The concerts will also illuminate for students how Blues is the foundation for genres more familiar to them, such as rock ‘n’ roll, gospel, and R&B.

The live multi-media educational program will fos­ter an appreciation of the great American Blues tradition. With the goal of teaching timely music curriculum concepts in a highly interactive and thrilling concert experience, the Strathmore Student Concerts include audience participation throughout, as well as supporting video content–live shots of musicians on stage and clips of famous Blues musicians performing.

Strathmore said the 5th grade student concerts require $124,000. Together with the 2nd grade concerts set for November, the total program costs $248,000 and is funded with help from the Strathmore Hall Foundation, GEICO, Jordan Kitt’s Muisc and the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation .

The concerts next week are set for 10:35 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and just 10:35 a.m. on Friday. Expect some school bus traffic in the area of the Music Center on Tuckerman Lane.

Flickr photo via Bill in DC


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