Car bumpers, windshield wipers and a whole bunch of dog poop.
Those were among the memorable items collected during the most recent Old Town cleanup effort on April 1. About 25 neighborhood residents gathered to pick up trash and help beautify the streets we call home. It was the fifth time in the last year these waste warriors have refused to let rubbish remain on sidewalks and common areas.
The dirty business began in December 2015, when neighborhood resident Kathie Peterson retired from the federal government. Her daily walks with her dog opened her eyes to the debris littering the neighborhood.
So last April, she organized a cleanup crew of eight people to walk through the neighborhood and tackle the trash. They supplied the trash bags, and Peterson promised post-purge burgers and beer at her home as a reward. The effort expanded and was held three more times in 2016.
"There's wonderful fellowship afterwards," Peterson said. "It's great."
The April 1 cleanup yielded about 15 full bags of trash from just one section of our neighborhood. Ward 1 Councilman Ed Ricks arranged for the city to pick them up.
Future gatherings are planned later this year. Residents interested in helping can join the Facebook group "Old Town Laurel Clean Up Crew" to learn more.
Our local churches are busy this week in observation of Holy Week and celebration of Easter.
Laurel Presbyterian Church, 7610 Old Sandy Spring Road, will hold a Holy Thursday Worship April 13 at 7:30 p.m. Easter Sunday Worship will be Sunday, April 16 at 10:30 a.m.
St. Philip's Episcopal Church, at the corner of Sixth and Main streets, will hold a Maundy Thursday service April 13 at 6:30 p.m. in Wyatt Hall. The family-friendly event includes a potluck supper, Biblical storytelling, Holy Communion and foot washing.
On April 14, St. Philip's will have a Good Friday family-friendly Stations of the Cross at 7:30 p.m. It begins in Wyatt Hall and will include some stops in the cemetery. Easter Sunday services will be held at 7:30, 9 and 11:15 a.m. There will also be an Easter egg hunt at 10:15 a.m.
St. Mary of the Mills, 114 St. Mary's Place, will have a Mass of the Lord's Supper April 13, at 8 p.m. April 14, will feature a Living Stations of the Cross performed by teens at 3 p.m., as well as passion services at 6 p.m. in Spanish and 8 p.m. in English. Easter Sunday Masses will be held at 7:30, 9 and 10:45 a.m. in English and at 12:30 p.m. in Spanish.
First United Methodist Church, 424 Main St., will host a Last Supper drama presentation April 13 at 7 p.m. On April 14, a Good Friday service will be held at 7 p.m. An Easter sunrise service will be held April 16 at 6 a.m., followed by a pancake breakfast. Other Easter Day services will be held at 8:15 a.m. and 11 a.m.
If you're looking for a camp for your children this summer, the Terrapin STEM Camp returns to St. Mary of the Mills for its second year. The camp for kindergarteners through fifth-graders focuses on science, technology, engineering and math and runs from June 26 to Aug. 11 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Before- and after-care will be available and registration can be made on a weekly basis. Learn more and register at www.terrapinstem.com or 443-585-2267.