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Keeping cool this summer at Emancipation Community Park in Laurel | OLD TOWN

One of the best places for kids to cool down in Old Town is open for the summer. The water feature at Emancipation Community Park, which sits adjacent to the Laurel Library along Eighth Street, is operational again after the feature was not turned on in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The popular feature was installed when Emancipation Park received a face-lift a handful of years ago. While not technically a splash park because the water does not recirculate, kids in the area have treated it as such since it debuted and can frequently be found running around in their swimsuits at midday to stay cool.

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The water feature is open from noon to 2 p.m. daily. The water does not run continuously and must be activated by pressing a column that sits at the western edge of the open space in front of the amphitheater. Thanks to the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation for making this fun feature available again this year.

School ended just a few weeks ago, but it’s already time to think about making sure students in need are prepared for the next school year.

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Laurel Advocacy and Referral Services’ annual School Supply Drive is accepting donations for the 2021-22 school year. Donations may be made by dropping items off at the LARS office at 311 Laurel Ave. or by ordering supplies from the group’s Amazon wish list. Donations must be received by July 12.

School supplies are needed for all ages, and some of the most needed items include backpacks, lunchboxes, notebooks, paper, folders, pencils and pens, markers, crayons, scissors and glue. The Amazon wish list can be found at a.co/2Z9ain2.

For more information on the LARS school supply drive, contact Karina Valenzuela at 301-776-0442, ext. 1030, or kvalenzuela@laureladvocacy.org.

Fidos for Freedom, an Old Town-based organization that trains therapy and service dogs, has two fundraising events coming up. The group’s Fidos Golf Charity Classic will be held Aug. 16 at Blue Mash Golf Course in Laytonsville. Registration is open for golfers and sponsorships at various levels are available. Contact Diane Bernier at diane.bernier@fidosforfreedom.org or 301-490-4005 to learn more.

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The second event, 2021 Bow Wow Bash, is scheduled for Oct. 15 at Martin’s Crosswinds in Greenbelt. The bash will feature an all-you-can-eat buffet, drinks and a live and a silent auction. Tickets are $70 per person or $650 for a table of 10 people. Tickets are available online at fidosforfreedom.org.

Contact Old Town columnist Mary Sullivan at marysullivan84@gmail.com.

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