The Urbana Volunteer Fire Department’s 49th Community Carnival is open nightly this week through Sunday, July 23.

The event is tailored towards fun for the whole family. Admission and parking are free, and the doors open every evening this week at 5:30, with rides opening at 6:00. There are a variety of carnival games throughout the midway. This year, there will be free nightly live music and fireworks at 10:00 PM Thursday night. A Blackstone 36″ Griddle is being raffled off, with the raffle drawing Sunday night. Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, unlimited ride tickets are available for $20.

This year’s dining options include shrimp platters, fried chicken, pizza, pit beef sandwiches, country ham, and more. There is also a beer garden. Summer treats are also available, including ice cream, Sno Cones (Hawaiian shaved ice), and funnel cake. The Urbana VFD requests that pets and coolers stay off the carnival grounds.




Chief Marcus Jones has released a statement on the death of Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old man who died from injuries sustained by police after a traffic stop on January 7 in Memphis, TN. Memphis Police are scheduled to release body-cam footage of the incident on Friday evening.  All five of the Memphis Police officers involved have been fired and indicted on murder charges. Per MCPD: “Our nation and the law enforcement community are once again faced with the death of a man at the hands of people who have taken an oath to protect and serve.

Five Memphis Police Officers have been fired and indicted on charges including murder and kidnapping in the death of Tyre Nichols. The Memphis, Tennessee officers also face charges of official misconduct and official oppression. Their actions are indefensible.

This latest incident is extremely disturbing, frustrating, and discouraging. Following the death of George Floyd, the Montgomery County Department of Police, along with departments across the nation implemented new policies and training for recruits and current officers.

Police departments nationwide have made a concerted effort to regain the trust of the communities we serve, and the actions by those five officers are not a representation of the hundreds of thousands of men and women who serve within communities across the country, nor do the decisions made by those officers reflect the trainings of our law enforcement professionals.

It is understandable to be angry. The Montgomery County Department of Police is committed to preserving the First Amendment rights of everyone and we allow community members to exercise their right to protest, however violence is not the answer, nor is it acceptable.

I send my condolences to the family of Tyre Nichols and the Memphis community. MCPD will continue to work in partnership with residents and community members to promote positive change in Montgomery County.

Marcus G. Jones
Chief of Police, Montgomery County Department of Police”



Per the Prince George’s County Police Department: The Prince George’s County Police Department’s Gang Unit arrested a Silver Spring man for being in possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute. The suspect is 29-year-old Raymond Jenkins. On December 30, 2022, at approximately 10:10 pm, officers were patrolling the 4400 block of Wheeler Road. While in the area, officers observed Jenkins slouched down in the front seat of a vehicle and believed that he may have needed medical attention. Officers immediately conducted a welfare check. As officers conducted the welfare check, they could smell the odor of marijuana emitting from the vehicle, which prompted a search of the vehicle.

Officers recovered a loaded handgun, as well as cocaine, and marijuana with an approximate street value of $25,000.  Jenkins is charged with drug and gun related offenses.


Many of us likely grew up with a Sears department store somewhere nearby, but lately you may have noticed that you haven’t seen much from the brand that has been a household name for decades. Sears has been rapidly closing locations since 2018, when it filed for bankruptcy in October of that year. According to a report from the Frederick News Post, the Sears department store at Frederick’s Francis Scott Key Mall is set to close on January 15th. Note: There is still a Sears Hometown Store listed as open in Chestertown, MD, but it is not a traditional Sears department store and focuses on selling appliances, tools, hardware and lawn and garden equipment.

Sears at Frederick’s Francis Scott Key Mall — one of the final remnants of a once great department store empire — is going out of business.The last day customers can shop at the store will be Jan. 15, a manager, who declined to provide her name, told a Frederick News-Post reporter on Tuesday afternoon. Bright yellow signs advertising the store’s impending closure in red block letters are plastered on the store’s windows. More hang around the building’s interior.

Sears, Roebuck and Co., commonly known as Sears, was founded in 1892 by Richard Warren Sears and Alvah Curtis Roebuck and reincorporated in 1906 by Richard Sears and Julius Rosenwald, with what began as a mail ordering catalog company migrating to opening retail locations in 1925, the first in Chicago. Sears became the biggest retailer in the United States in the 80s, but began to struggle financially in the subsequent decades. It was purchased by Kmart in 2004 in an effort to save both brands, but north retailers filed for for Chapter 11 bankruptcy 14 years later. It announced on January 16, 2019, that it had won its bankruptcy auction, and that a reduced number of 425 stores would remain open, including 223 Sears stores. Now, there are currently just over 20 Sears brick and mortar stores remaining across the country. Montgomery County locations closed in Bethesda (Montgomery Mall) in March 2019, Gaithersburg (Lakeforest Mall) in December 2019, a Sears outlet closed in Wheaton (Wheaton Mall) and Sears in White Oak closed in 2021. Featured photo courtesy of Google Maps.

Per the State of Maryland:
Reaffirms Beloved Team’s Strong Commitment to the State of Maryland and the City of Baltimore For Up to 25 Years as M&T Bank Stadium Approaches Its 25th Year
The Maryland Board of Public Works today unanimously approved a new stadium lease agreement between the Maryland Stadium Authority (MSA) and the Baltimore Ravens that extends the team’s commitment to remain in Baltimore and support investment in M&T Bank Stadium through the end of the 2037 NFL season, with two five-year options to extend.

“This is an exciting day for the City of Baltimore and the State of Maryland as the Ravens are truly a world-class organization and a source of great pride for Marylanders,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “With the ratification of this historic agreement, we are securing the franchise’s presence in Baltimore for decades to come, and advancing critical infrastructure upgrades for M&T Bank Stadium. I want to thank both the Ravens and the Maryland Stadium Authority for their continued strong partnership.”

Following passage by the Maryland General Assembly of HB896 (2022), the MSA was delighted that the Ravens expressed a desire to discuss their agreement well in advance of its 2027 expiration and investment in M&T Bank Stadium as it approaches its 25th year. HB896 offered a significant incentive for the team to renew or extend its lease and remain in Baltimore, and it provides the opportunity to expand the economic impact of games and other year-round activities at the stadium.

On Wednesday, December 14, 2022, general business terms of an agreement related to stadium renovations were presented and approved by the National Football League (NFL). On Tuesday, December 27, the MSA Board of Directors met to consider for approval a new stadium lease agreement that would reaffirm the team’s strong commitment to the State of Maryland and the City of Baltimore. With the MSA Board of Directors’ unanimous approval of the proposed agreement, it was then presented to the Maryland Board of Public Works on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 and received unanimous approval.

MSA will continue to work closely with the Baltimore Ravens so that M&T Bank Stadium will be upgraded to remain a best-in-class facility in terms of safety, amenities, and fan experience. MSA fully recognizes that with this agreement and the improvements HB896 affords presents a once in a generation opportunity to redevelop M&T Bank Stadium to further elevate Maryland as a sports and entertainment destination and create economic development opportunities for years to come.

“The Maryland Stadium Authority is extremely pleased with the new stadium lease agreement with the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium that continues our strong partnership with the team through the end of the 2037 NFL season with two five-year options to extend,” said Thomas Kelso, Chairman, MSA. “While fundamentally the same as the agreement presently in place, it offers greater protections to the MSA, additional revenue opportunities to the team that are in line with current stadium trends and opportunities to collaborate on improvements that will enhance the fan experience as afforded by the HB896 legislation.”

“We thank the Board of Public Works and Governor Hogan for supporting this agreement. We are excited that M&T Bank stadium will be home to the Ravens for at least the next 15 seasons,” said Sashi Brown, President, Baltimore Ravens. “We also look forward to working with MSA to make key investments to ‘the Bank’ that Ravens fans deserve. These improvements will allow the Ravens to continue delivering one of the NFL’s best game day experiences and to attract world class concerts and events to Baltimore and the capital region.”

About HB896. HB896 (2022) increased the cap on Camden Yards Sports Complex debt from $235 million to $1.2 billion ($600 million each for Oriole Park and M&T Bank Stadium), increased the cap on monies for debt service transferred from lottery funds to $90 million from $20 million, and stipulated that the term of any bonds issued could not exceed the term of the team lease where the money is to be spent. This offers a significant incentive for the teams to renew or extend their leases and remain in Baltimore, and provides the opportunity to expand the economic impact of games and other activities at the stadiums.



Per the Maryland Lottery:  “When Edward Rybolt Jr. of Frederick realized he and his wife won $50,016 playing Powerball, he recalls being overwhelmed with excitement.

One Sunday after church, he visited his favorite Lottery retailer to buy a $10 ticket for the Oct. 29 drawing. His lucky retailer is Edgemere Convenience store located at 7308 North Point Road in Baltimore. When he scanned the ticket after the drawing, he couldn’t believe Lottery luck had really come his way.

“I just lost it,” the 51-year-old said, recalling the moments after his amazing discovery. Lucky Edward gave a special shout out to his wife for playing a vital role in helping select numbers for the ticket. He attributes his lucky win to his wife and to lots of prayers.

Edward plans to use his winnings to pay off bills, build up the family’s savings and perhaps enjoy a night out on the town with his wife. During the day, the small-business owner runs a company that offers landscaping and power washing services.”


(As part of our reporting on news in Montgomery County and surrounding communities we sometimes come across happenings, new restaurant brands, and other businesses entering or expanding the wider D.C. Metropolitan area or other areas nearby. While they may not be in Montgomery County, we believe some readers might find this kind of news interesting.)
Per the Maryland Lottery: A Maryland Lottery player is finishing out the holiday season with a big Multi-Match win. A $690,000 winning ticket was purchased in Frederick County for the Monday, Dec. 26 drawing.

The winner, who is the sixth player to hit a Multi-Match jackpot in 2022, can choose between the $690,000 annuity paid over 25 years, or an estimated $460,000 cash option (both figures are before taxes). The winning ticket with the numbers 2, 3, 16, 30, 37 and 42 was sold at Safeway located at 337 East Ridgeville Blvd. in Mount Airy.

The lucky Lottery retailer will receive a $1,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.

Lottery officials encourage the winner to sign the back of the ticket and keep it in a safe location. The player has 182 days after the date of the drawing to claim the prize.

Multi-Match, which started in 2006, is Maryland’s in-state jackpot game, with tickets sold only here in Maryland. The Multi-Match jackpot was last hit for $580,000 on Oct. 3, 2022. The top four Multi-Match jackpot wins to date were $4.8 million on Sept. 19, 2009; $4.45 million on March 18, 2010; $3.8 million on Dec. 16, 2010 and $3.6 million on June 8, 2015.

Instructions on claiming prizes in person or by mail are available HERE. Players must redeem prizes larger than $25,000 by mail or at Lottery headquarters in the Montgomery Park Business Center, 1800 Washington Blvd., Suite 330 in Baltimore. The Lottery’s Claims Center in Baltimore is open by appointment only (no walk-ins). Click HERE to schedule an appointment.


Per the Maryland State Police: Maryland State Police are investigating a fatal three-vehicle crash in which one person died Tuesday evening in Allegany County. Shortly before 7:25 p.m. on Tuesday, troopers from the Maryland State Police Cumberland Barrack responded to westbound Interstate-68 at Route 36 in Frostburg, Maryland for a report of a multi-vehicle crash with injuries. According to a preliminary investigation, a 2017 Ford Explorer was driving westbound on I-68 when the vehicle rear-ended a tractor-trailer.

The crash sent the Ford Explorer into the next lane, where it was struck on the driver’s side by a 2004 Ford F350 truck. The driver of the Ford Explorer, identified as Corey Douglas McElroy, 31, of Friendsville, Maryland, was flown by Maryland State Police Helicopter to Ruby Memorial Hospital, where he was declared deceased. Upon further investigation, it was learned that McElroy was a deputy sheriff for the Garrett County Sheriff’s Office, and he was driving an unmarked departmental vehicle at the time of the crash.

The road was closed until about 10:50 p.m. following the crash. The Maryland State Police Crash Team is investigating the incident.

The cause of the crash remains under investigation.



Per U.S. Customs and Border Protection: There’s nothing funny about the bones that U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists recently discovered in the baggage of a Virginia woman at Washington Dulles International Airport. During a secondary baggage examination on November 10, CBP agriculture specialists discovered bones that the Fauquier County, Va., woman admitted were giraffe and zebra bones she found in Kenya and kept as souvenirs. CBP detained the bones and checked with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) inspectors on admissibility.

On November 17, USFWS inspectors reported that the bones violated provisions of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and the Lacey Act. USFWS directed CBP to seize the bones.

The woman, whose name CBP is not releasing because she was not criminally charged, was initially referred to a secondary agriculture examination for declaring that she possessed a small Acacia tree twig. She then amended her declaration to include the bones after CBP agriculture specialists x-rayed her baggage and discovered an anomaly. The Acacia tree twig was admissible. CBP released the woman after agriculture specialists detained the bones.

“I can appreciate travelers wanting to keep souvenirs of their vacations, but those souvenirs could violate United States or international law, or potentially expose our families, pets or our nation’s agriculture industries to serious animal or plant diseases,” said Kim Der-Yeghiayan, Acting Area Port Director for CBP’s Area Port of Washington, D.C. “Customs and Border Protection strongly encourages all travelers to know what they can and cannot pack in their baggage before returning to or visiting the United States and to declare all items upon arrival.”

CBP agriculture specialists have extensive training and experience in the biological sciences and agricultural inspection, and they inspect tens of thousands of international air passengers, and air and sea cargoes being imported to the United States. They are on our nation’s frontlines to ensure our nation’s economic vitality by protecting our vital agricultural resources.

During a typical day last year, CBP agriculture specialists across the nation seized 4,552 prohibited plant, meat, animal byproducts, and soil, and intercepted 319 insect pests at U.S. ports of entry.

CBP urges all travelers to visit CBP’s Travel website to ‘know before they go’ and learn what products that are prohibited or inadmissibleto bring to the United States.

CBP’s border security mission is led at our nation’s Ports of Entry by CBP officers and agriculture specialists from the Office of Field Operations. CBP screens international travelersand cargo and searches for illicit narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, invasive weeds and pests, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, U.S. businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality.

Learn what CBP accomplished during “A Typical Day” in 2021 and learn more about CBP at

Follow the Director of CBP’s Baltimore Field Office on Twitter at @DFOBaltimore for breaking news, current events, human interest stories and photos, and CBP’s Office of Field Operations on Instagram at @cbpfieldops.


Per Montgomery County: The Montgomery County Government, and programs that impact County residents, will have the following schedule and program changes for the Christmas Weekend, Saturday, Dec. 24, through Monday, Dec. 26.

  • County offices—Closed Dec. 24-26.
  • MC 311—Will close at 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 23.
  • State offices and courts—Closed Dec. 26.
  • State Motor Vehicle Administration offices and Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program stations—Closed Dec. 24 and 26.
  • Libraries—Closed Dec. 25-26.
  • Alcohol Beverage Services (ABS)—All stores will be open Saturday, Dec 24, on a holiday schedule of 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Stores will be closed Sunday, Dec 25. Stores will be open regular hours on Dec 26.
  • County-operated COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Clinics—Closed.
  • Department of Permitting Services—All offices, including customer service lobby, are closed on Dec. 26
  • Ride On—Operates a Saturday schedule until 10 p.m. on Dec. 24. Operates on a Sunday schedule on Dec. 25-26. All schedules can be found at Routes and Schedules.
  • Ride On extRa and Ride On Flex—Not in service Dec. 24-26.
  • Flash—Will operate on a weekend schedule Dec. 24-26 (Orange Line only).
  • MARC Train and Commuter Bus—See schedules at
  • TRiPS Silver Spring commuter store—Closed Dec. 25-26.
  • TRiPS Mobile Commuter Store—Closed Dec. 25-26.
  • Metrorail—Will operate from 7 a.m.-1 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 24, from 7 a.m.-midnight on Sunday, Dec. 25, and from 7 a.m.-midnight on Monday, Dec. 26.
  • Metrobus—Will operate on its Sunday schedule on Sunday schedule on Sunday, Dec. 25, and on Monday, Dec. 26.
  • Public Parking Garages, Lots, Curbside Meters–Posted rates and restrictions in effect on Dec. 24. Parking is free on Dec 26.
  • County-provided trash and recycling collections—Regular collection schedules on Dec. 26.
  • Shady Grove Transfer Station and Recycling Center—Dec. 25: Entire facility closed. Dec. 26: Transfer Station and Recycling Center open.
  • Aquatic Centers— Will close at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 24. Will be closed on Sunday, Dec. 25. Open on Monday, Dec. 26.
  • Community Recreation Centers—Will close at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 24. Closed on Dec. 25-26.
  • Senior Centers: Closed Monday, Dec. 26.
  • Montgomery Parks—Visit for complete information.

Per the Frederick Police Department: On Dec. 9, 2022, at approximately 2:16 p.m., The Frederick Police Department received several calls for a disturbance and the sound of gunshots. Callers advised that an altercation took place around the area of Key Parkway and Willowdale Drive. Officers responded to the area, but did not immediately locate any subjects that were believed to be involved. Patrol officers continued to canvass the surrounding area and eventually observed a subject that matched the clothing description of one of the possible suspects in an outside common area of a nearby apartment complex. Officers made contact with the subject and checked the surrounding area where he was observed. Within close proximity of the subject, officers found a loaded handgun hidden under a children’s toy. The subject immediately began to flee on foot from officers when they discovered the handgun. The subject ran to the area of McCain Drive and entered into an underground water culvert. The culvert travelled underground from McCain Drive to an area South of Route 40 near the Alternate Route 40 split.

Officers positioned themselves at both ends of the culvert and with the assistance of a Frederick County Sheriffs Office K9 Team, they entered and began to search for the suspect. As the officers were making their way through the culvert, the suspect emerged at the other end and was arrested. The suspect was in possession of a New Jersey ID card, however officers determined the ID card was fake and the name was not the suspect’s correct name. Officers eventually fully identified him as Gervon William Norris (11-08-1993) of Gaithersburg, Maryland. Officers discovered that Norris had an active arrest warrant through the Anne Arundel County Sheriffs Office for failing to appear in court. Officers also learned that Norris is prohibited from possessing firearms due to previous criminal convictions.

Norris was charged with the following crimes:

  • Possession of a handgun on his person
  • Possession of a loaded handgun on his person
  • Illegal Possession of ammunition
  • Possession of a firearm with felony convictions
  • Illegal possession of a regulated firearm



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