Montpelier Arts Center begins the 2015 season of Dinner and a Movie Saturday, Feb. 21, at 6 p.m. On the eve of the Oscars, come view an offering from Academy Award-winning director Clint Eastwood. His 1988 film, "Bird," a portrait of jazz visionary Charlie "Yardbird" Parker, starring Forest Whitaker, was awarded a Golden Globe for Best Director and an Academy Award for Best Sound. The film is shown after a dinner with a menu tailored to some aspect of the movie.

Tickets for both dinner and film are $30 per person, and must be purchased by noon the Friday, Feb. 20. Film-only tickets are available for $10 per person on the day of the screening. Seating is limited and film-only tickets may not be available. Tickets may be purchased with a Visa or MasterCard by calling the arts center at 301-377-7800.

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Celebrate Black History Month at the arts center with the exhibition, "Glancing Back and Looking Forward: 100 Years of African American Culture and History in Prince George's County, Maryland." The presentation features the lives of selected Prince Georgians who pursued a variety of occupations and community roles. Photographs, artifacts and excerpts from interviews will showcase personal stories and contributions to the county over the past century.The exhibit runs until Feb 28.For more information about the Black History Month celebration, please call 301-446-3232.

February is also American Heart Month. Million Hearts, a national initiative launched in 2011 by the Department of Health and Human Services to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes by 2017, is focusing this year on blood pressure. Uncontrolled high blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease and stroke.The condition often has no overt signs or symptoms, which is why it is important to check your pressure regularly.Health care providers, pharmacies and drug stores provide blood pressure monitors to do this.In our area, you can also get your pressure tested at fire houses.

HHS officials recommend steps to keep your readings under control: set a blood pressure goal with your physician; take appropriate medication; stop smoking; and reduce sodium intake.We have heard all of this before, but remember, about 70 million Americans have this condition, which makes them four times more likely to die from stroke and three times more likely to perish from heart disease.To learn more, go to millionhearts.hhs.gov. Make time this month to take care of your heart – physically as well as with cards and flowers.Our South Laurel/Montpelier community has so much going on – lets all stay healthy so we can enjoy.

P.S. – Happy Valentine's Day!

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