Montpelier programs open a door to the past

Montpelier Mansion Historic Site has a range of activities to enjoy this summer.

The Hidden Spaces Tour on June 2 at 4 p.m. will provide opportunities to observe the underlying historic foundations of the mansion, revealing how the original construction has been modified and updated over the centuries. Participants in the tour will enter spaces not normally open to the public. There will be some close quarters and narrow stairs involved, so be sure to wear sturdy shoes and comfortable clothing.


The cost is $15 or $10 for active military and members of Friends of Montpelier. Reservations are required for this event. Call 301-377-7817.

The Blast-in-the-Past, Hands-On History Playground will take place July 11 through Aug. 3, Thursday-Saturday only. The mansion grounds will be transformed into a small colonial village. Fees are $2.50 for county residents and $3 for non-residents. On Saturdays, everyone pays the county rate for admission. No reservations are required. Call 301-377-7817 for information.

Community residents should be aware of the requirements for the new Maryland driver’s license or identification card. The REAL ID Act requires official documentation of age and identity, Social Security and Maryland residential address. Acceptable age and identity documentation may include a current passport, an original or certified birth certificate and any necessary paper work to document reasons for a name change.

The proof of Social Security may include an original Social Security card, W-2 form or SSA-1099. Two proofs of Maryland residency can be vehicle registration, utility bill or a bank statement displaying your name and residential address. Failure to present these documents will result in the recall of your driver’s license or identification card. Some of us have already received notice of this requirement with individual deadlines for submission. To set up and appointment or to check on your status, go to

The Laurel/Beltsville Senior Activity Center has the new summer schedule of classes and events available. Classes on abs and glutes, billiards, chair and restorative yoga, Chinese calligraphy and line dance are offered, among many others. Trips for seniors this summer include the National Portrait Gallery on June 13.

Tuition and registration is required for classes and trips and may be handled at the Center Front Desk or through ParksDirect.

Free tech talks on such topics as social media and computer Q&A, and viewings of recent movies are scheduled. Movies are screened from 9:30 to 11 a.m. The showing on June 13 is “The Circle;” “Marshall” is on view June 27. To learn more about the impressive schedule, go to Go to Laurel/Beltsville Senior Center and click on calendar.