THE BROOKDALE BUGLE

Web edition of the distribution scheduled for January 2010
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House Sales
Wisconsin Place Recreation Center
TRANSITIONS

President's Message

I hope that everyone had a good Christmas and that we can all look forward to a brighter 2010. We survived the Great Snowfall of December 21, and many took the opportunity to look out for neighbors who needed assistance in dealing with the aftermath.

Brookdale residents put in a good showing at the recent opening of the Wisconsin Place Recreation Center, which is important because the more we participate, the greater a voice we are likely to have in the programming decisions being made for the Center. The Executive Committee will explore in the coming weeks, whether we can use those facilities for our annual meeting in May.

It was also a good year for many social get-togethers in the neighborhood - July 4th, the annual Block party and Halloween -- with lots of people sharing their talents to help reinforce our sense of community and enable residents to meet more of their neighbors.

We lost one member of the Executive Committee, Maria Szalay, VP for Orchardale, who moved out of the neighborhood, although fortunately not too far away. A big thanks to Diane Tanman on Sherrill Avenue, who has kindly agreed to take on the remainder of her term, at least until May. Diane and her family have lived in Brookdale since August 1999 and she is the mother of 4 children, 18, 17, 7 and 3.

As always, there is an open invitation for anyone in Brookdale who is interested in getting involved either with the Committee or as a volunteer for a variety of community needs, to get in touch with their block captains or their Vice President to make their interests known. All hands welcome.

Wisconsin Place seems to be moving very slowly into full operational mode. Current information is that the Bloomingdale's Metro access should be open by President's Day in February. More details about openings of the remaining retailers is provided elsewhere in this Bugle.

Happy New Year to all. — Marie Moylan

Community Center's Grand Opening — Eric Sanne

It took 11 years from conception to completion, but the Wisconsin Place Community Recreation Center is finally up and running. The center, the primary amenity provided by the builders of the Wisconsin Place site for residents of nearby communities, opened for business on September 28 with a limited number of classes. Among those present at the center's Nov. 15 Grand Opening were County Executive Ike Leggett; council members Phil Andrews, Roger Berliner, Marc Elrich, and Nancy Floreen; and Department of Recreation Director Gabe Albornoz. The ceremony was a tribute to many who helped make the center a reality. Brookdale's Bob Cope, former chair of CCCFH, was singled out for his immense contribution, as were Friendship Heights manager Julian Mansfield and former Brookdale President Dave Montgomery.

David Branick, the center director, expects to select the seven-member Wisconsin Place Community Recreation Center Advisory Committee in the next month. Many of us looked forward to seeing the center's gallery space exhibit art. It appears that the space designated is quite limited, but we look forward to this use once the advisory committee addresses some issues.

Now that the center is open, you owe it to yourself to check out its facilities. With a membership at the Chevy Chase Athletic Club running approximately $69 a month, I am impressed that a three-month pass at the center is only $75. The center boasts two floors and 21,000 square feet, including a gymnasium, a large activity room with 1500 square feet, a smaller activity room with 1300 square feet, a conference room, a child play area and a weight room. A free access card is required for entry into all Montgomery County Recreation Department facilities and can be obtained at any such facility.

The Montgomery County Recreation Guide features more than two dozen classes at the center; see http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/content/rec/currentguide.pdf [This is a 19 Mb file; allow time for download.]. Also, Montgomery County classes can be found online at Rec Web, the Recreation Department's online registration website.
Fees for Montgomery County residents:
Weight Room & Gym: $180 for one year, $110 for 6 months, $75 for 3 months; $20 for 4 visits
Open Gym: $30 annually
Silver Sneakers Program – residents 55 and older may enter the facility free of charge from 9-2 Mon.-Fri.

Hours of Operation: Mon.-Thurs. 9 am to 9:30 pm, Fri. & Sat. 9 am to 6 pm, Sun. 12 to 6 pm

Contact Info: Wisconsin Place Community Recreation Center, 240- 777-8088
David Branick, Community Center director, 240-777-6900

Development News — Robert L. Cope

WESTBARD ON HOLD

The Montgomery County Council recently decided to postpone for two years the start of the Westbard Sector Plan. Thus, it is quite possible that the Planning Board will not start to study the Westbard Sector Plan area until some time in 2012. The Council moved Westbard to the back of the line because it wants the Planning Board to begin studying the proposed purple line (Crescent Trail) train stops. One of these station stops is located on Connecticut Avenue where the Crescent Trail crosses Connecticut Avenue, commonly referred to as Chevy Chase Lake. The Chevy Chase Land Company owns a large tract of land at this site. The fact that the purple line probably will not be built for another decade did not seem to factor into the thinking.

GEICO EXTENSION

Several questions have arisen about GEICO's approvals expiring in June 2010. However, because of the recession, especially in the building industry, the County Council extended all approvals in the County for an additional two years. Thus, GEICO now has until 2012 to commence construction on its site. GEICO has not necessarily indicated an interest in starting any construction.

[Editor's Note: On January 5, Steve Martz, GEICO's Assistant Vice President for Real Estate and Facilities Management, said that GEICO intends to allow their zoning approvals to expire and to eventually sell their property to a developer.]

Block Party Beat Went On…and On — Larry Barrett

It was 1 a.m. when the flames in Michael Freeman's mobile fireplace flickered out and the last knot of block partiers dispersed.

The Dalton St. do, which had started 5ish on September 12, was noted for its eclectic vittles as well as its length. Wearing a spiffy toque he sports on special occasions, Eric Sanne prepared pizzas to order on a Green Egg grille. Bill Geary symbolized his New Orleans roots with a kettle of jambalya. A backed ham, a platter of barbecued chicken legs and a large array of spreads, dips, salads and desserts rounded out the menu.

Regina Reed Crosson, the party's principal organizer along with Marie Moylan, reported that the estimated 75 participants had brought their appetites; leftovers were scarce. Mike Makuch brought out his sound system and served as deejay.

The September block party has become a Brookdale tradition (though no one can remember exactly when it started prior to this decade). To encourage good attendance in 2010, Eric pledges to repeat his pizza gig.

Recent Brookdale Real Estate Transactions – Phyllis Wiesenfelder*

Rentals:**


• 5207 Andover Road, Rented 6/29/09. Listed for $6,300, rented for $6,000 in 12 days
• 5308 Baltimore Road, Rented 7/30/09 Listed for $3,000, rented for $2,900 in 43 days
• 4627 River Road, Rented 8/1/09 Listed for $3,000, rented for $3,000 in 10 days
• 5205 Saratoga Avenue, Rented 9/1/09 Listed for $2,995, rented for $2,750 in 28 days
• 5302 Baltimore Road, Rented 9/25/09. Listed for $3,100, rented for $3,100 in 28 days.
• 4606 Merivale Road, Rented 10/27/09. Listed for $3,850, rented for $3,650 in 46 days.
• 4628 River Road, Rental application pending. List rental is $2,050.

Active Sales:
• 4633 River Road, listed for $675,000 since Nov. 2, 2009 • 5206 Saratoga Rd., for sale by owner for $770,000 since mid-Dec. Colonial, 3 bdrm, 3 ½ baths, built in 1950.

• Sold:

• 5329 Baltimore Ave., listed for $825,000, sold for $825,000 in 14 days, with a $14,200 seller subsidy for closing costs. Settled 9/25/09. Colonial with 3 bdrms, 3 ½ baths, built in 1947.

• 5303 Baltimore Ave., Listed for $875,000 originally, sold for $800,000 in 76 days. Settled 11/17/09 Colonial with 3 bdrms, 3 ½ baths, built in 1947.

• 4726 Merivale Rd., listed for $775,000, sold for $775,000 in 6 days. Settled 11/6/09. Colonial with 3 bdrms, 2 ½ baths, built in 1951.

• 4602 Overbrook Road, Originally listed for $875,000, sold for $820,000 in 63 days. Settled 10/30/09. Colonial with 3 bdrms, 3 baths, built in 1937.

* An agent for Long & Foster Realtors.

** Editor's Note: While we have not generally listed rentals, this information is now available to the public and is of greater interest as owners decide to lease rather than sell their property in the current real estate market.

TRANSITIONS

Newcomers
We welcome the following new neighbors.

Brad and Eileen Leiber and 13-month old son Kieran reside at 4998 Dalton Rd.

David and Katherine Dearden moved to 5003 Westport at the end of January, 2009.

In November, Brian Berry and Katia Casademunt purchased and moved into their new home at 4726 Merivale Road, which underwent an extensive renovation last August. The couple moved from the District after living in Europe for several years. They are both employed in the local hotel industry.

Katie Zoglin moved to the community last Summer from northern California as the new occupant of 4724 Merivale Road. She is a senior program manager at Freedom House promoting democracy and human rights advocacy around the globe.

Joe Mata, Anne Tully, and their son Luke Mata now reside at 4602 Overbrook Rd.

Guido Geissler, Margherita Castelli, their daughter Daphne (3), and new son Ulisse (born Jan. 6) are now living at 4606 Merivale Rd.

Birth

The Rev. David and Laura McConnell, at 5210 Saratoga Ave., welcomed their third son, William, on Dec. 5. He joins older brothers Andrew and Caden.

If you are a newcomer, we hope you have already received a warm welcome. We would like to publicize your presence and other transitions in the Bugle. Please send items to the secretary, as listed on the website.

BROOKDALE HALLOWEEN PARTY — Deborah Kalb

Dozens of Brookdale residents, including princesses, superheroes, and Winnie the Pooh, turned out Oct. 31 for the annual Halloween party in the park. Although rain threatened, it held off until a few drops began to fall as the festivities were winding down.

Kids of all ages joined in whacking at piρatas shaped like a ghost and a black cat, and scrambling for the candy and toys that eventually scattered across the leaf-strewn grass. Other activities entertaining the partygoers: bobbing for apples in a tub of water, nibbling on snacks, and trying to eat donuts strung from a line without using hands. Toward the end, many of the costumed children and their parents circled the park for the parade, and some neighbors stayed on to eat pizza before heading out for an evening of trick-or-treating.

Among those involved in organizing the event were Crystal August, Darcy King-Leatham, Laura Leishman, Mikel Moore, Suzanne Oliwa, Michele Parisi, Sophie Pestieau, Maria Szalay, and Diane Tanman. Many thanks to all of them for their hard work.

The tree is more than first a seed, then a stem, then a living trunk, and then dead timber: The tree is a slow, enduring force straining to win the sky. —Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Trees – Two County Programs As our neighborhood ages, so do its trees. Think about the trees you have had to remove or severely cut back. Did you replace them somewhere on your property? If not, the neighborhood is diminished in its shade, a valuable asset. Now you can participate in two county programs. The latest is called "Leaves for Neighborhoods" and offers a $25 coupon for a discount on trees costing at least $75 purchased from participating nurseries throughout the county.

Coupons can be downloaded at http://www.montgomeryplanning.org/events/leaves/. They must be redeemed by the end of May 2010. If you do not have a computer or printer, you may contact Gwen Lewis for assistance.

The traditional county program that many have already participated in, but for which there continues to be great need, is the Street Tree Program. In this program the county provides, free of charge, trees for the county right of way near the street on your lot. The owner or resident may request these trees. Now is the time to request for Spring or Fall planting. See the Brookdale website for information on this program. Many types of trees are available, the size that can be planted depends upon whether there are overhead wires at your site.


Classified Ads

Teen Seeks Work
Tamsen Evans (16), enthusiastic pet care.

House for Sale
Orchardale – 3 bedroom house. Asking price $770,000. Graceful living room with fireplace and sunroom w/ deck adjacent. Large dining room. Master BR, 2 closets, shower bath. Two additional BRs with hall bath and linen closet. Pull-down stairway to huge attic. Half-finished walk-out basement to landscaped yard. Central A/C, attached garage, 3 1/2 baths. Planning to renovate kitchen and then put house on market with real estate agent in the next few months. If interested in making an offer before the renovation and listing, contact owner Debbie Schumann at 301- 229-6084.

The classified section of the Brookdale bugle is provided as a service to Brookdale residents, who may place ads free of charge. A fee of $15 will be charged for ads placed by nonresidents, and all ads are subject to approval by the Brookdale Citizens' Association Executive Committee.

Brookdale Artists — Gwen Lewis

It will probably come as no surprise that there are a number of professional and amateur artists living in Brookdale. Interests range from oil, acrylic, and watercolor painting to scupture, quilting, and photography. Subject matter interests cover portraits, landscapes, architecture, abstract, photojournalism, to name a few. Professions vary from art critic to psychologist.

Over the past several months, 20 of us have come together to form an interest group. On Wednesday, October 28 eleven of the self-identified artists residing in Brookdale met for the first time at the home of Dianne Wolman on Westport Road. In addition to learning about one another and showing our art work, the group decided to use an e-mail list to share information on art opportunities, materials, knowledge, etc. and to explore mounting a Brookdale art exhibit.

On the exhibit front, Dave Montgomery reported on the art exhibit facilities of the new nearby Community Recreation Center. We discussed using the Friendship Heights Village Center art gallery and Brookdale Park as venues for our work. We agreed that a one-day show for neighbors in Brookdale Park in the late spring might be our best option although logistics are an issue. Pat Kitchen is leading the exploration of that option. Be alert to this community opportunity and watch for a Spring art show.

To join this group contact either Gwen Lewis or Dianne Wolman.

The deadline to submit articles, notices, and ads for the April 2010 issue of the Brookdale Bugle is 9 p.m. March 31.

The Brookdale Bugle is a publication of the Brookdale Citizens' Association.

Editor                       Gwen Lewis
Assistant Editor         Deborah Kalb
Layout (hard copy)   Steve Langer

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