Per Adventist Healthcare Shady Grove:

GAITHERSBURG, Maryland The new year is off to a bright and busy start at two Adventist HealthCare hospitals, where some of the first babies of 2022 in the Washington, D.C., area have arrived.

Just 12 minutes after midnight, Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center in Rockville, Maryland, welcomed a baby boy. Sarah Ivins of Germantown, Maryland, delivered Cyrus Mason, who weighed 6 pounds 11 ounces. Cyrus was one of three babies born in the first 25 minutes of the year to moms at Shady Grove Medical Center.

At 1:35 a.m. in Silver Spring, Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center welcomed its first baby of the year, a girl.

The New Year’s babies and their parents received gift baskets filled with books and baby essentials from the hospitals to help celebrate being 2022’s first arrivals.

“It is with great joy that our Birth Center welcomes the first baby of 2022,” said Nan Troiano, Shady Grove Medical Center’s Director of Women’s and Infants’ Services. “What a blessing it is to serve our community and provide worldclass care to new parents and their babies.” Shady Grove Medical Center delivers approximately 4,500 babies each year and offers a Level III NICU to care for premature or critically ill infants.

“Each year we feel so blessed to welcome the first baby of the new year at our Birth Center and this year is even more meaningful as it offers joy during challenging times for our community,” said Patricia Hudson, manager of the Birth Center at White Oak Medical Center. “We are looking forward to celebrating more special moments with many families this year.”


2021 Year in Review

Below you’ll find some of our most popular (non-COVID) posts and stories from 2021.


Inauguration Day Bernie

Jon Bernthal hanging out at the Lego Store in Westfield Montgomery

“Originally from MoCo, the actor is popular for his many roles in television series and movies such as The Walking Dead, The Punisher, The Wolf of Wall Street, The Accountant, Ford v Ferrari, and the recent Soprano’s movie The Many Saints of Newark.

He grew up in the Cabin John area and graduated from Sidwell Friends in DC in 1995.

He still has family in the area and is spotted hanging out in MoCo all the time.

Photo courtesy of @e_j_fletch on Instagram”


Good Counsel Alum Plays in Second Straight SuperBowl

Kansas City Chief Dorian O’Daniel played against Tom Brady and the Buccaneers at this year’s SuperBowl LV in Tampa, FL.

Dorian attended high school and played football at Good Counsel in Olney, where he was a running back and linebacker. As a senior he was named the Montgomery Sentinal’s Offensive Player of the Year and the Gazette’s Montgomery County Player of the Year.

That year he also made the Washington Post’s All-Met First Team. O’Daniel then graduated from Clemson with a degree in parks, recreation, and tourism management.

In 2018, he was selected 100th overall in the 3rd round of the NFL Draft.

Last year Dorian and the Chief’s won the NFL Championship when they defeated the San Francisco 49ers SuperBowl LIV.


Brian Nicholson, a MoCo Native, is the Youngest Krispy Kreme General Manager in Company History

Krispy Kreme recently opened a new shop at a Columbia Heights in Washington DC with general manager Brian Nicholson leading the way.

Brian is a MoCo native. He was born and raised in the county and graduated from Wootton High School in 2018.

He has worked for Krispy Kreme for five years, starting a the Fallsgrove location in Rockville, where he became a full-time in employee after his high school graduation and served as an assistant general manager.

After just 9 months, he was promoted to general manager of the DuPont Circle location before being asked to open the newest location at 3100 14th Street in Columbia Heights last month.

Brian tells us his experience opening a new store has been “more than fun” and was excited to be able to open the store in February– Black History Month.

We wish Brian the best at Krispy Kreme and look forward to seeing him continue to succeed. Maybe he will bring MoCo a second Krispy Kreme location? We can only hope!

Congratulations, Brian!

Steve Chu, QO alum and owner of Baltimore restaurant Ekiben, Drove 6 Hours to Cook for Customer with Cancer

Steve Chu, QO alum and owner of Baltimore restaurant Ekiben, packed up and headed to Vermont when he learned that one of his customers, who was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, was craving one of their dishes.

A family member had reached out to the Ekiben team to tell them that her mother-in-law, who lives in Vermont but often visits Maryland, had stage 4 lung cancer and was craving Ekiben’s tempura broccoli. The family member shared that she was planning to drive up from Maryland to Vermont and wanted to surprise her Ekiben-loving relative with the dish.

After asking whether she could either have the recipe or ingredients for the broccoli dish so it would be fresh after the long drive, she got a surprising response from Ekiben’s team. Chu replied by saying “Thanks for reaching out. Ephrem [a co-owner] and I are more than willing to meet you guys in Vermont, and make the food fresh so it will be just like what she remembered.”

As reported by Good News Movement , Steve and his team stayed in the area for a couple of days and turned down the family’s offer to compensate them for their air bnb, food, and gas. Chu was joined by co-owner Ephrem Abebe alongside one other team member.

By: Michelle Katz @pike.and.rozay on Instagram


Good Samaritan in Germantown

Odessa Shannon Middle School Chooses New Colors and Mascot

Back in November, the Montgomery County Board of Education voted to change the name of Col. E. Brooke Lee Middle School in Silver Spring to Odessa Shannon Middle School.

The change will take place following this school year and yesterday the school staff unveiled the brand new mascot and school colors in a YouTube video.

Odessa Shannon Middle School has adopted “Wolves” as the new mascot and has chosen blue (the top color from a survey) and light green (Odessa Shannon’s favorite color) as the nee school colors.

Shannon was the first African-American Board of Education member and a lifelong activist. She worked tirelessly to help close the achievement gap for minority families and was the recipient of numerous awards, such as the Human Rights Hall of Fame, the African American Living Legend Award, and Hornbook Award for Outstanding Service to Education.

Shannon’s name will replace Col. E Brooke Lee, a Maryland politician whose policies shaped Montgomery County’s zoning and land use in the 1920s. These laws barred African-Americans from living in Silver Spring, with the exception as domestic servants. It wasn’t until 1968 that Montgomery County enacted fair housing policies.


Police Search for a Raccoon After Attacks in Rockville

Per Rockville City Police:

“The Rockville City Police Department is asking community members to be on the lookout for a raccoon that attacked a dog and a child in Rockville on Monday morning.

Anyone who sees a raccoon acting aggressively should leave the scene and call 911.

A dog was attacked and bitten Monday morning near College Gardens Park, 615 College Parkway.

Later in the morning, around 11 a.m., a child was bitten in Kinship Park, 254 N. Washington Street.

Officers from the Rockville City Police Department are actively searching for the raccoon.”

The Last Arby’s in MoCo Closes

A few of the reactions from twitter:


2021 High School Graduation Season


I<3U Jenny

Former Damascus Student-Athlete Bikes Across the Country Raising Money for ALS


“On Saturday, June 26th Wil Armstrong, a 2016 Damascus High School graduate, commenced his cross-country bike ride “Against the Wind” from Rehoboth Beach, DE. He is expected to finish 2.5 months later in Seattle, Washington. Throughout this journey, Wil is updating his daily blog with his progress, experiences, and updates on his banana consumption count. During his cross-country journey, he is crowdfunding for the ALS Association after seeing his mentor and former basketball coach, Rodney Lapp, go through it.

Wil played football for his high school’s state champion team and later played rugby at the University of Maryland. What started off as a high school job at Jimmie Cone carried over into his time at the University of Maryland, where he got his Master’s in Quantitative Finance through the Robert H. Smith School of Business through their Plus One program. With eight years under his belt, he was the Damascus Jimmie Cone’s longest tenured employee! How much more Damascus can you get?

When people ask Wil why he is taking on such an adventure he says, “Touring is a way to use my gifts to make a difference in the world, the stars are aligned, and nothing makes me feel more clear, focused, and alive.”


Rockville’s Helen Louise Maroulis Becomes The First American Woman to Win Two Olympic Medals in Wrestling

Helen Louise Maroulis is a Rockville-born freestyle wrestler who competes in the women’s 55-kg 53-kg and 57-kg categories. She was the first-ever American to win a gold medal in women’s freestyle wrestling back at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

In August, she became the first American woman to win two Olympic medals in wrestling when she beat khongorzul Boldsaikhan from Mongolia for the Bronze medal.

She attended Magruder High School for three years, where as a freshman she became the first female wrestler to place at the Maryland state wrestling championships. She has been a great spokesperson for mental health awareness after suffering many physical injuries, brain trauma and the effects of prescription medicines.

2021 Montgomery County AG Fair


Glenmont then and now (60s and 2021)

Katie Ledecky visits Little Flower School in Bethesda

Ledecky provided words of encouragement to current students at the school while proudly wearing her most recent gold and silver medals from the recent 2020 Tokyo Olympics (held this summer).

She and her Team USA Swimming teammate Phoebe Bacon both attended the school while growing up right here in MoCo.

Ledecky has won 7 Olympic gold medals and 15 world championship gold medals, the most in history for a female swimmer. She is also the world record holder in the women’s 400-, 800-, and 1500-meter freestyle (long course), and holds the fastest-ever times in the women’s 500-, 1000-, 1500-, and 1650-yard freestyle events.

The school posted the following message and pictures on its social media:

“Little Flower School Alumna KATIE LEDECKY came back for a visit! Thank you Katie for being an amazing role model and inspiration to our entire Cardinal Community. We are so proud of you! 🥇🏊‍♀️🇺🇸”


Red Light/Green Light

Post Guapo’s Workout


Local P.E. Teacher Recognized at Washington Football Team Game

On-field recognition for Lenny Myers, Kennedy High School P.E. Teacher, who was named educator of the month by Washington Football Team earlier this year.

Lenny Myers was awarded Educator of the Month by The Washington Football Team‘s Black Engagement Network earlier this year.

”Mr. Myers leads from the front. He is an amazing teacher in the classroom at John F. Kennedy High School and his students love and respect him.

His best work is in his community; Mr. Myers has a program for children looking to gain new basketball skills through his program, “Reach Beyond Basketball.” This program provides financial help to to children in the community with scholarships in order to take the burden off of struggling families.”

Tower Records in Rockville

Read our full article about the history of Tower Records in Rockville here.


Happy 100th Birthday to Kensington man! 

Thai Tanium in Gaithersburg

Former MCPS Superintendent Dr. Joshua Starr has just announced the availability of his new book, Equity-Based Leadership, for pre-order.
Starr became the Superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) on July 1, 2011, a position he would hold until February of 2015.Per his bio on the MCPS website:

During his MCPS tenure, Dr. Starr was recognized for his willingness to advocate for teachers and school staff. He was a strong believer in the potential of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) to create meaningful change in public education, and urged state and national leaders to consider a moratorium on accountability systems and evaluations based on out-of-date standardized tests so schools and districts can effectively align their systems, policies, and professional development to the CCSS.

He resigned from the position on February 16, 2015, in what officials said was a mutually agreed upon decision.

Dr. Starr began his career as a special education teacher in New York City, working with students with emotional and behavioral disorders. He held administrative and executive positions in urban and suburban school districts and served as Director of School Performance and Accountability for New York City Public Schools, the nation’s largest school district. From 2005 to 2011, Dr. Starr was the Superintendent of Stamford (Conn.) Public Schools, where he distinguished himself by increasing academic rigor for all students, standardizing curriculum, and building partnerships with the civic and business communities.

Dr. Starr is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, earned a Master’s degree in special education from Brooklyn College, and holds a doctorate degree in administration and social policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

More on his book, Equity-Based Leadership, per Harvard Education Press:

With a visionary approach to school improvement, Equity-Based Leadership proposes a framework to support system leaders seeking to organize change and achieve more equitable education. More
In this ambitious yet pragmatic work, Joshua P. Starr makes the case that intentional and attentive district leadership can bring about continuous improvement in schools. When district reforms are conceived with social justice in mind, Starr explains, schools move toward fulfilling the longstanding promise of equitable education in America.

Starr asserts that the essential goal of good system leadership lies in designing, implementing, and sustaining comprehensive strategies for school reform, in collaboration with school leaders, educators, and community shareholders. Drawing on his own experiences and those of other distinguished superintendents, he offers core practices that system leaders can use to ensure that the mission of their district is upheld throughout any change process and that precious time and funding are used judiciously.

Recognizing that there is no single path to transformation, Starr sets forth a flexible, customizable agenda for district reform that concentrates on six elements, or entry points. Starr’s first entry point is curriculum content, as teaching and learning are the fundamental goals of a school system. But he goes further to advocate for a deep dive into the organization and alignment of the system itself, via deliberate support of shared values; explicit and transparent decision-making; resource allocation in line with vision and need; talent management to achieve new levels of educator performance; and nourishment of school culture.

Additionally, Starr brings together a wide range of real-world examples, evidence-based practices, and sensible advice to guide district leaders in aligning their systems around a coherent equity strategy.

This bold new approach to transforming educational systems confidently guides the higher-level decision-making of leaders—not only superintendents but also school board members, cabinet members, and central office administrators—within the context of district-wide efforts to make education better for all students.


Ben Stein, Silver Spring Native

Ben Stein grew up in the Woodside Forest neighborhood of Silver Spring. He attended Montgomery Hills Junior High with Sylvester Stallone in the late 50s. Stein then moved on to Blair High School, where he was a year ahead of Goldie Hawn and graduated with journalist, Carl Bernstein (teamed with Bob Woodward to do much of the original reporting on the Watergate Scandal, which led to the eventual resignation of President Richard Nixon).

He majored in economics at Columbia University’s Columbia College and graduated with honors before graduating as valedictorian from Yale Law School.

After a stint as a lawyer in Connecticut and Washington D.C., he became a college professor at American University, Cal, and Pepperdine.

Stein jumped into politics as a speechwriter and lasers for President Richard Nixon and President Gerald Ford. Time magazine even speculated that he could be Deep Throat, but it was later revealed to not be the case.

His acting career took off when he portrayed a teacher who spoke in monotone in the 80s hit Comedy, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, with Matthew Broderick. He played a similar monotonous character in for a decade or so in Clear Eyes commercials before landing his own game show, Win Ben Stein’s Money, on Comedy Central.

Though He currently lives in California, Ben Stein still owns an apartment at Watergate building in Washington D.C.

Photos courtesy of the 1961 Montgomery Blair High School yearbooks.



After filing for bankruptcy in 2004 due to the collapse of physical album sales and the rise of digital music, Tower Records closed its Rockville location just after the holiday shopping season in 2006, 15 years ago this December.

The beloved chain was more than just a record store. In addition to being a place to buy albums, Tower Records sold books, magazines, videos/DVDs, and concert tickets.  The store held record release events and many major recording artists performed shows at the location, including Foo Fighters, Pearl Jam, Good Charlotte, and Blink-182.

Tower Records first opened at 1685 Rockville Pike in Congressional Plaza in 1989 before moving to its second location in the shopping center at 1601 Rockville Pike in the early-90’s.

Image courtesy of Steve Michaels on Facebook

This video, created by staff members of Tower Records Rockville in 1995, was uploaded to YouTube by despinapp in 2009, and perfectly encapsulates the vibe of the store and the culture of the time.

We recently posted about the store on Instagram and these were some of the best responses:

Watch the full Pearl Jam concert from 1991 below:

In November of 2020, Tower Records returned as an online retailer at


Update: Hayden Ollivierre has been located safe and unharmed.

Concern for Missing Silver Spring Teenager


For Immediate Release: Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Gaithersburg, MD – Detectives from the Montgomery County Department of Police – Special Victims Investigations Division (SVID) are asking for the public’s assistance in locating a missing juvenile female.

Hayden Ollivierre, age 15, was last seen on Tuesday, November 9th around 4:38 p.m. at the Wheaton Metro Station.

Ollivierre is approximately 5-feet, 6-inches tall and weighs 130 pounds. She has brown eyes and brown hair. She was last seen wearing a long sleeve black crop top, gray sweatpants and black Crocs. She may be carrying a red purse.

Police and family are concerned for her welfare.

Anyone with information about the whereabouts of Hayden Ollivierre is asked to call the police non-emergency number at 301-279-8000 (24-hour line).


Hayden OllivierreHayden Ollivierre (Original Image)



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Alicia Deeny is the First Latina High School Principal in MCPS

Established in 1892, Richard Montgomery High School (RM) is the oldest public high school in Montgomery County. For the first time ever RM appointed a female principal, and she is also MCPS first Latina High School Principal in History.

Alicia Deeny, Richard Montgomery’s new principal, grew up in Montgomery County and attended public Schools. She grew up with a Puerto Rican mother who was an English major and taught her to take pride in the family’s heritage while only speaking to her in Spanish.

Before starting her role at Richard Montgomery, Deeny served as the Takoma Park Middle School Principal and before that she experienced being on a high school administrative team by serving as one of Blair’s assistant principals.



Montgomery Parks recently shared four historical events that have taken place on Montgomery Parks property throughout the years.

Below you’ll see the facts, courtesy of Montgomery Parks:

Nazi Prisoners of War Camp

During World War II, the federal government brought more than 400,000 mostly German prisoners of war (POW) to the United States and placed them in camps in almost every state. Gaithersburg’s POW Camp 8 was one of nineteen camps set up in Maryland. It was located in what is now Johnson’s Local Park(opens in a new tab) or formerly known as Emory Grove Local Park. Prisoners worked at canneries, mills, farms, and other places that were deemed minimal security risks. Even after the war in Europe ended and Germany surrendered, thousands of POWs were not released immediately. In September 1945, a 25-year old POW working on a farm near Rockville escaped and was never found.(opens in a new tab)

Fighter Planes

Wheaton Regional Park once had a Vought F7U Cutlass plane! The plane was introduced in 1951 and was a notorious failure. It was known as the “Gutless Cutlass” for its underpowered engines and the “Ensign Eliminator” for its many fatal crashes. The aircraft was installed at Wheaton Regional Park in 1964. There was another fighter jet also at Cabin John Regional Park. The Cutlass was climbed on and played in so much that it had to be reskinned.(opens in a new tab) Eventually, the planes were removed, cut up, and, presumably, sold for scrap.

A group of people sitting on warplane that was displayed at Wheaton Regional Park in 1965.

Photo Credit: 1963 M-NCPPC Annual Report, courtesy of M-NCPPC Archives

Battery Bailey

Battery Bailey(opens in a new tab) was a man-made hill constructed during the Civil War to defend Washington, DC from Confederate Army attacks. The battery is on top of a hill overlooking Little Falls Branch and is constructed in a “C” shape facing north. To fortify the capital, a series of forts, batteries, and entrenchments were built around the city. This defensive perimeter totaled thirty-four miles. Battery Bailey, named for Colonel Guilford D. Bailey, who was killed at the Battle of Seven Pines in 1862, is the only Civil War fortification remaining in Montgomery County. It is located at the site of Westmoreland Hills Local Park.

Old MacDonald’s Farm

This farm at Wheaton Regional Park(opens in a new tab) was the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission’s first attempt to exhibit agricultural operations for the enjoyment of park visitors. One of the first patrons at this attraction was First Lady Jackie Kennedy and her son, John Kennedy Jr. The original plans for the farm included a scarecrow near cultivated fields and a variety of livestock, including turkeys, pigs, chickens, cows, donkeys, and rabbits.

A group of children and adults looking at animals at Old Macdonald Farm in 1970.

Photo Credit: 1963 M-NCPPC Annual Report, courtesy of M-NCPPC Archives


Arson Investigation Underway in Clarksburg

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue investigators are asking for assistance/information in regards to a fire that occurred Saturday, August 14 around 830pm at the 22900 blk of Spicebush Dr in Clarksburg.

Cheif Spokesperson for Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Pete Piringer reports that the fire started outside and went up the back of an occupied condo building.

No injuries were reported, one person was displaced.


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will be holding public tours at the famous Washington D.C. Temple this spring, the first time it will be open to the public since 1974.

The church was originally scheduled to open to the public in 2019 but was delayed due to COVID-19.

The temple, beyond the visitor center, will be open to the public from April 28 through June 4, 2022, 9am-9pm, except on Sundays.

The temple is located at 9900 Stoneybrook Dr. in Kensington.

Parking and Metro shuttle tickets are now available at


“Open to the public for the first time in 50 years, we invite you to take a tour of this beautiful and iconic building. Come & See the place where we find peace, purpose and connection to each other and to God. During the open house, people of all ages, faiths, and no faith are welcome to come inside.
The Open House is free and the tour is self-guided.  Parking and shuttle tickets are required in order to access the parking lot or use the metro shuttle. No ticket will be required to enter the temple or for the self-guided tour. Individual entry to the Temple Open House by foot, public transit, taxi, bike, Lyft, Uber, etc. does not require a Tour Ticket.“

“When the temple was completed in 1974, it served all Latter-day Saints living east of the Mississippi and some Latter-day Saints in South America and Canada. At 160,000 square feet, it is the third largest temple in the world. It contains instruction rooms and sealing rooms, where marriages are performed.”



Driver That Struck Family of Six Walking on Sidewalk in Gaithersburg on Friday Evening Charged With DUI

A family of six, which included several children, were struck by a vehicle while they were walking on the sidewalk along Girard St. in Gaithersburg.

According to WJLA, Elder Ramos Hernandez of Gaithersburg has been charged with DUI and additional charges related to the incident. They report Hernandez “lost control of his Jeep Cherokee after making a right turn onto N. Summit Avenue from Odendhal Avenue”.

All six were transported and evaluated for non-life threading injuries. It is unclear at this time what caused the vehicle to leave the road.




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