South Laurel/Montpelier: Keep active with South Laurel Rec classes

Let's not become couch potatoes this winter. To help keep up with our New Year's resolutions, the South Laurel Recreation Council is now accepting registrations for a variety of interesting classes that begin this month. Classes include chess, which will be held on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. beginning Jan. 26 at the Montpelier Carriage House; knitting, also starting on Jan. 26 in the Carriage House from 10 to 11 a.m.; Pilates, all levels, beginning Wednesday, Jan. 23 from 7 to 8 p.m. at Montpelier Elementary; and salsa ,beginning Jan. 22 from 8 to 9 p.m. at James Harrison Elementary. Classes held in elementary schools require pre-registration. For further information and to reserve a spot in the classes, call the council at 301-776-2805 or go to http://www.southlaurelrecreationcouncil.org To use a SMARTlink account, call 301-583-2655 or go to and click on SMARTlink. You may also register in person at Deerfield Run Community Center on Route 197, weekdays, 2 to 9 p.m., and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Dinner and a Movie series is underway at the Montpelier Arts Center. On Jan. 12, the feature film was "Hey, Boo: Harper Lee & To Kill a Mockingbird." This is a truly spellbinding biographical film outlining the events and characters in the author's own life and how she made them come to life again on the pages of her Pulitzer Prize-winning book. "Hey, Boo" also had clips of the Civil Rights Era upheavals in the South at the time of the book's publication in 1959, as well as a discussion of the impact of the book and the subsequent Academy Award-winning film starring Gregory Peck. Having read the book shortly after its publication and certainly having seen on TV the shocking footage of the actual events, I must say I had not connected the impact that the novel and film had on what was transpiring in our country at the time.

"Hey, Boo" is an excellent introduction to the Feb. 16 Dinner and a Movie showing of "To Kill a Mockingbird." Tickets for both dinner and film are $30 per person, with a 10 percent discount for seniors and center members. Call 301-377-7800 for reservations. Come enjoy the film and some "real Southern cooking" in keeping with the film's theme.

As we wind up the holiday season, the Prince George's Police Department's District VI Community Oriented Policing Services team reminds us that we may place our undecorated, unbagged live Christmas trees on the curb by 6:30 a.m. on the regularly scheduled yard waste collection day. These trees will be recycled into mulch, which will be available in the spring free for county residents. For more information, call 301-883-5045.

Happy New Year to all South Laurel/Montpelier residents. Hope to see you at one of the classes, at the Dinner and a Movie and/or picking up our free mulch in the spring.

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