Don't miss the latest exhibit at the Montpelier Arts Center's Resident Artists Gallery. When first entering the gallery, you may be puzzled by what appear at first to be mostly blank walls. Lift your gaze up to the ceiling and you will feel yourself floating away with the myriad of colorful kites suspended from the rafters.

Artist Alonzo Davis uses the kites as a metaphor for flight. Davis, who has been fascinated by flight since childhood, says his exhibit was inspired by ceiling works viewed in the Dulles airport. Other artists who collaborated in the display are Jessica Beels, Bob Donahue, Patricia Steck, Lynn Sylvester and the poet Kay Lindsey.

The colorful art forms are certain to lift your spirits on a blustery autumn day. The work is on display until Oct. 26. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily; there is no admission charge.

On Saturday, Oct. 20 at 7:30 p.m., Oaklands Presbyterian Church on Laurel Bowie Road is hosting a fall concert featuring pianist Jay DeWire, a frequent solo performer and member of the West Shore Trio. Jay has performed at such venues as the University of Maryland, Indiana University, the University of Virginia and the Aspen Music Festival. Delicious desserts will be served after the performance. Admission is free, and a donation of $3 is requested.


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The Fall History Lecture Series at Montpelier Mansion on Oct. 24 features a presentation by Laurel resident Ken Skrivseth on the diaries of George Nye, who served as the superintendent of the historic Laurel Mill from 1877-1885. Ken transcribed the diaries, which provide a real-time description of our town in those days. The lecture begins at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free. Call 301-777-7817 for further information.

Montpelier Elementary School has several activities on schedule for this month. On Friday, Oct. 12 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., the PTA hosts an ice cream social for students and their families. For just $3 per person, families can get to sample delicious treats as they get to know each other. Through Oct. 15, the students celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month with a lobby showcase featuring Latin American items, celebrities and cultural information. In addition, students have been learning a new basic Spanish vocabulary word each morning as part of the morning announcements.

If you are in the Halloween mode, be sure to reserve a spot at the Masquerade Tea at Montpelier Mansion on Saturday, Oct 27 at 1:30 p.m. Wear your favorite mask or costume and be in the running for the prize for the best outfit. The menu includes finger sandwiches, cakes, pastries and your choice of tea. The cost is $27.50 per person (ages 12 and up) and includes a self-guided tour though the mansion. Call early for reservations as these events sell out fast.