Talk illuminates the history of Montpelier

Laurel Leader

Laurel Chapter 422 of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees learned fascinating details about Montpelier Mansion on Feb. 7, at its meeting at the Laurel/Beltsville Senior Activity Center. Don Graham, of MNCPPC, who manages restoration efforts at the mansion, gave a brief history of the house including the establishment of the property by the Snowden family in colonial times, up to its acquisition by Park and Planning in the 1970s.

Particular focus was on the recent restoration efforts which included repairing water damage to the foundation, repairing the chimney and parts of the roof, as well as removing two patios which were added to the house in recent times.

While many of the attendees were familiar with the general history of Montpelier, Graham’s presentation allowed attendees to get into the “guts” of the building.

The Montpelier Arts Center is presenting a free panel discussion “Women in Jazz: How to Jump Start your Career” on Sunday, March 31, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the center. A panel discussion will deal with topics related to gender issues in the world of music, including education, training and booking performances. Vocalists and educators Alison Crockett and Lynne Veronneau and jazz radio personality Katea Still will give their perspectives from their years in the field. Call 301-377-7800 for more information.

The Prince George’s County Police Department is sponsoring a three-day School Safety Patrol Leadership Spring Break Camp on April 15-17 at the County Police Headquarters, 7600 Road, Palmer Park. The camp is intended for students in current school safety patrol leadership positions who have not attended this camp in the past. The camps are designed to build relationships among the participants through various team building activities. The camp hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and there is a $85 registration. Participation is limited to the first 20 patrols who register at Call Cpl. J. Black #3014 at 202-669-7800 or 301-909-7134 for more information.

Unfortunately, there is an increase in theft from parked vehicles of parking permits for those with a disability. Prince George’s County police will be targeting those who steal these permits and then attempt to sell them.

Police Chief Stawinski states that in the past seven months, there have been 192 reports of placards being stolen. In 70 percent of these cases, car windows were smashed to gain access to the placard. These events often take place near senior living facilities. Stawinski urges us be alert to the way in which these placards are displayed. Unless we are parking in a spot requiring this pass, keep it out of sight somewhere other than on the rearview mirror. Keep a record of your permit’s registration number in a safe place and report a stolen card immediately. If you know of any person who is committing these crimes, which affect particularly vulnerable citizens, please call 301-772-4911 or, to remain anonymous, call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-8477.

And always remember poet Percy Shelley’s famous line: “O, wind, if winter comes, can spring be far behind?”

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