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Susan Belford

Stories by Susan

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‘Tiger Trot’ Aids Fire Department

The hills and valleys of Potomac will suddenly come alive on Sunday, April 13 as more than 400 runners and walkers take to the streets for the 4th Annual “Tiger Trot.” The 5K run/walk, sponsored by the Connelly School of the Holy Child benefits the Cabin John Park Volunteer Fire Department as well as the wellness and fitness programs at the school. This community race draws both elite runners from the area as well as family, friends, neighbors, firefighters and Holy Child faculty. All are welcome to participate in the run and walk through Potomac neighborhoods.

4-Year-Olds Learn About Entrepreneurship

“Camila’s Lemonade Stand” author visits Potomac Nursery School.

“If you could start your own business — any business you wanted, what would you choose?” asked teacher Barbara Haas to her class of 4-year-olds at Potomac Nursery School. The question prompted answers from the children of “I would have a business where I could take care of animals” to “I would want to make delicious food for people.” Some wanted to become home builders, doctors or fire-fighters; others wanted to become lawyers to help other people.

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Country Club Manager Honored for Leadership

Bradley Cance, general manager and chief operating officer of the Bethesda Country Club was recently honored by his alma mater, Michigan State University with his selection into the 2013 Hall of Fame "Class of Mentors." Cance was chosen for the coaching and mentoring support he has given to students from the university. He has counseled and guided interns, and assisted future club managers in their searches for employment within the industry. He has also been one of the top two or three alumni in Destination Auction donations each year for 10 years. Cance received the award at the university’s annual Celebration of Leadership, held on Nov. 9, 2013 in New York City.

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Ring In Holiday Season with Gifts from Potomac Village

So much, so near.

The shopping season is here — and it’s time to find special gifts for everyone on your list. But instead of rushing to the mall, or heading to the outlets, this year, shop in Potomac.

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Local Producer’s ‘No Evidence Of Disease’ To Screen in Bethesda

Doctors in rock band honor their patients.

N.E.D. or “No Evidence of Disease” — the words every patient hopes to hear — is the name of a rock band created by six GYN cancer surgeons who deliver a message and hope with each song they play. Bethesda’s Karen Simon has joined with Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, director Andrea Kalin of Washington D.C.’s Spark Media to produce a documentary that chronicles the lives of the doctors as well as the courage and experiences of their patients. The movie descriptor explains: “As music and medicine join forces in the fight for life, surgeons are transformed into rising rock stars, and their patients and loved ones jump on the bandwagon, infusing the struggle for survival with heart, hope and Rock ‘n’ Roll.” The doctors, irate because gynecological cancers do not receive the publicity that other cancers receive — or the funding — choose to take on the “Below the Belt” cancers. Their songs are original and they play not only for their own satisfaction, but to honor the courage of their female patients and their devoted families and friends, who join in the fight to make others aware of this “silent killer.”

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Join Donna E. Driscoll Walk for Dystonia

Event to raise funds for research.

Donna Driscoll is the voice of courage as she discusses dystonia, the disease she has lived with for nine years. “It’s frustrating and debilitating — but I never give up pushing. I feel better when I am trying.” Driscoll’s life was totally altered by this neurological movement disorder that she now battles on a daily basis. She had always been an active person who played competitive USTA team tennis, taught first grade at Garrett Park Elementary and traveled often to visit grandchildren. Because of dystonia, the Potomac resident has been forced to give up tennis, retire from her teaching position and quit walking her dog. She could not accompany her children and grandchildren to Disney World without a wheelchair and she had difficulty with daily tasks such as grocery shopping and walking up and down stairs. Yearly she vows to beat dystonia by raising funds for research and by increasing the public’s awareness. “Researchers have made strides in the treatment of dystonia, and I am determined to raise enough money to solve the mysteries of this disease and find a cure. Researchers have found new procedures and medicines that improve the lives of those with Parkinson’s — a disorder closely related to dystonia. I always say, ‘Parkinson’s has Michael J. Fox, dystonia has me.” Driscoll continues to increase the knowledge about her debilitating disease by trying to mobilize government officials to grant more funds to dystonia research.

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Understanding Disabilities

Wayside’s ‘SNAP’ Week teaches challenges of special needs.

Potomac’s St. Andrew’s Episcopal School Gym was over-flowing with students, parents and friends cheering the Wayside staff team on as they held their own against the acclaimed wheelchair basketball team The Maryland Ravens.

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Holiday Gift Show to Benefit Area Charities

Shopping takes on a new meaning.

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Get Ready for Potomac Day

Games and fun await this fall at Potomac Day.

Documentary Highlights Wounded Warriors Program

Documentary Highlights Wounded Warriors Program

Wounded Warrior J.D. Hartley credits a horse for changing his life. “I was scared at first, but I haven’t had a nightmare since I met Peanut, my horse.

Help Cure Ocular Melanoma on Sunday

This is a personal fight for Harvey Levine of Potomac, coordinator of the concert. His sister Sheila is fighting ocular melanoma – and he is doing everything in his power to raise funds for research.

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Providing Programs for Those with Developmental Disabilities

PCR works with other groups to launch similar programs.

In 1994, Joan and Jim Sullivan of Potomac proposed an idea to Father John Enzler and the parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church — an idea that changed and improved services for teens and adults with developmental disabilities in Montgomery County.

Family Adventures Before Summer Ends

Planning end-of-summer activities.

It’s less than one month before the onslaught of the new school year. Homework, after-school activities, athletics and schedules will soon begin and continue for the next 10 months. Right now is the time to be thinking about how to best pack in some end-of-the-summer day-trip activities for your family to enjoy. Here are some innovative, action-packed — but close-by ideas — for finishing off this summer with a bang.

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Potomac Family Hosts Fresh Air Fund Child

“Seven days can change a child’s life.”

River Falls resident Gregory Mitchell was a “Fresh Air Fund” child — a “life-changing, character-shaping experience,” he said. Growing up in a single-parent household in the Bronx, N.Y.C. meant that he did not have an opportunity to leave the inner-city — the hot, noisy streets were the only playground he knew. From the ages of 10-13, the Fresh Air Fund provided a two-week summer visit with a large family in New Hampshire.

Churchill’s Selman Brings CYM to Potomac

Leaves school system to devote full time to his company.

Everyone who has seen Winston Churchill High School theatrical productions in the past nine years — “BLAST,” “Peter Pan,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Legally Blonde” or others — has been impressed with the creative set design, professional lighting and innovative sound effects as well as the training and focus of the student technical crew.

Hidden Artwork Being Revealed at Old Angler’s Inn

Restoration is in progress upstairs in the Inn’s front dining room.

When Hurricane Sandy blasted through the Mid-Atlantic last year, Mark and Sara Reges, owners of Old Angler’s Inn received the call that the roof on their historic restaurant was leaking. When they arrived at the Inn, they discovered an amazing surprise. The constant dripping in their upstairs dining room was causing the plaster to peel from the wall — but underneath was a picturesque mural of the C & O Canal, painted by Mark’s grandfather George Reges.

It’s All About Family Ties: ‘Me & 3’

It started with rugelach.

Potomac’s Harvey Bernstein was born to bake. His father and brother were bakers and his mother was an excellent cook. As a young man, he always sought employment in the food industry, performing a multitude of jobs from cook to waiter. However, he listened to his father when he said, “Don’t work with your body, work with your brain” and became an attorney. However, his happiest moments were when he was kneading, rolling and elbow-deep in dough. His specialty was rugelach — a crescent-shaped cream-cheese dough pastry, home-baked for their family holidays and celebrations.

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Bezu Revamping: Mix Bar and Grill To Open in August

Menu to offer American and Mediterranean cuisine.

Potomac’s Bezu has long been a favorite of Potomac residents — but if you decide to dine there this week, you will discover it is closed and in the midst of renovation.

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McPaw Pet Showcase Design Challenge: Enter Now

Eleven rooms need artistic vision.

The Montgomery County Partners for Animal Well-being (McPaw) is looking for creative and artistic visionaries who love animals — and who want to become a part of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity — the McPaw Pet Showcase Design Challenge.

WILL Interactive Inc. Brings Hollywood to Potomac

Business uses interactive movie experiences for training.

Driving by the Bank of America building on Falls Road every day, one most likely never notices an innocuous black and white sign announcing that WILL Interactive, Inc. resides in that building. The mystery of the name may only momentarily tweak one’s brain.

‘Autism Speaks’ 5k Run/1 Mile Walk Returns July 4

Event raises awareness and funding.

Before watching the July 4 fireworks or chowing down on some mouth-watering barbeque, make it a mission to run or walk in the 13th annual “Autism Speaks” 5K/1 Mile Fun Run. Each year, the Potomac Library is the gathering place for this race which attracts more than 1,400 runners and walkers — all to raise awareness of the plight of children affected with autism and their families, as well as to raise funds to support research and programs for autistic children and loved ones.

New Venue; New Vibes

Taste of Potomac raises funds for Adoptions Together.

A courageous 15-year-old, Arlene Reles, addressed an audience of more than 300 at the 2013 Taste of Potomac benefit for Adoptions Together on Saturday, June 8. The teen told the story of her life before adoption and how it felt to be in foster care.

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Sharing in the joy of volunteering

KEEN Sports Day gets volunteers from Au Pair of America

“I loved volunteering at the KEEN Sports Day,” said Camila Souza, who works for a Potomac family through Au Pair of America. “It made me realize that I can make a difference just by giving a high five — or by cheering on these young people as they run bases or learn a new dance. I was there to give him support — but he gave me inspiration.”

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On Target

Olympic-style archery program at Connelly School of the Holy Child.

Holy Child’s physical education teacher Leslie Whitaker was astounded when she was notified that a 700-pound box had been delivered to the school and was waiting for her to claim.

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‘Girls on the Run’ Empowers Seven Locks Elementary Girls

Creating a lifestyle.

“I would never have become a runner if it weren’t for ‘Girls on the Run,’” said third grade student Amanda Oliver. “I used to hate running and now I love running with my new friends. It’s tough, but it teaches you to keep plugging and always be positive.”

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Potomac’s Debi Dreyfuss To Compete in Air Race Classic

National competition challenges female pilots.

Debi Dreyfuss has wanted to fly since she was 6 years old when her uncle took her for a ride in his Cessna 172.

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‘Fiddler on the Roof Jr.’ Opens at Randolph Road Theater

Three performances scheduled for June 8-9.

“Fiddler on the Roof” has been capturing the hearts of audiences of all ages since the play first hit Broadway in 1964.

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Muslim Foundation Honors Community Service Volunteers

Working to combat hunger.

More than 300 people celebrated the benevolent work of the Montgomery County Muslim Foundation at its annual community cookout at Black Hill Regional Park. The May 5 event honored the many volunteers whose energy and efforts made the MCMF’s 2013 Food Drive and other service projects a success.

Taste of Potomac To Benefit Adoptions Together

Fundraiser event to be held June 8.

Grilled lamb chops from Cava, tuna tartar from Hunter’s Inn, short ribs from Old Angler’s Inn, mini-indulgences from Seasons 52 — to sample the finest of fare, make plans to come to the Julia Bindeman Suburban Center on Saturday, June 8 at 7 p.m. for the Taste of Potomac.

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Picnic Honors Volunteers

Montgomery County Muslim Foundation celebrates award.

More than 350 people gathered at Black Hill Regional Park to honor Montgomery County Muslim Foundation (MCMF) volunteers and to celebrate their “2012 Exceptional Partner Award,” presented by Giant Foods and Manna.

Custom Tailor Opens in Potomac Village

Family brings couple across country.

Sung Lee and his wife Jung Park gave up their flourishing alteration business in West Des Moines, Iowa to move to Potomac to be close to their sons.

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Potomac United Methodist Church Hosts Strawberry Festival

Annual event returns on Saturday, May 18.

One of the sweetest events in Potomac is back again — the annual Strawberry Festival held each May at the Potomac United Methodist Church — the quaint white church facing Falls Road in Potomac.

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Science Building Receives LEED Gold Certification

German School in Potomac earns environmental praise.

“It is important to pass on the lesson of caring for our environment to our young people,” said Waldemar Gries, Head of School for the German School, Washington, located on Chateau Drive in Potomac.

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Seven Year Old Uses Technology in Heroic Act

Noah Schnall uses Facetime in an emergency.

Do your children know who to call for help in an emergency? Do they understand how to use a cell phone or an iPad — or Facetime? Have they been told about 911 — how to call and what to say?

Center To Host Cultural Night

Meet new director at dance and cuisine event.

The Potomac Community Center will be celebrating the multi-ethnicity of the community with an inaugural “Cultural Dance and Cuisine” night from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. on Friday, May 17. The public is invited to an evening of international dance performances representing China, Greece, Russia, India, Latin America and more.

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Annual Potomac Spring House Tour Returns

Event to support Congregation Har Shalom’s projects.

Love touring unique homes and looking for ideas of how to enhance your own home? Be certain to mark May 19 or 20 on the calendar for the Potomac Spring House Tour.

Mark Shriver To Speak at Potomac Library on May 6

Son reflects on his father.

Mark Shriver commented that almost every day of his adult life, while at college and after college, his father, Sargent Shriver wrote a letter to him.

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‘Spring Fling’ Brings Crafts

Potomac Community Center’s annual event to include community shred.

The Potomac Community Center’s annual “Spring Fling” on May 4 will offer Potomac area residents an opportunity to find that special gift for Mother’s Day or to browse vendors for one-of-a-kind craft items, purses, clothing and jewelry.

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JCCGW Celebrates 100 Years Creating Community

Year-long celebration of center’s centennial.

Throughout this year, the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington (JCCGW) will be celebrating 100 years of “connecting people of the Jewish community with each other, Israel and the broader community.”

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Marketing Tips from Agents

Precise pricing is key.

Homes in Potomac have always been considered desirable — but the numbers sold and the values of the properties have ended their declines since their highs in 2006.

‘Kids Helping Kids’ To Benefit Local Organizations

Annual fundraiser adds “Buddy Run.”

The fifth annual “Bullis Gives Back” 5K Run/2.5K Walk will take on a new meaning this year as more and more Bullis students are committed to the theme — “Kids Helping Kids.” Besides running in the 5K and walking in the 2.5K, Bullis students will be running and walking with a “buddy” from The Diener School, from K.E.E.N (Kids Enjoy Exercise Now) and from The Treatment and Learning Centers/Katherine Thomas School 9TLC/KTS) in an inaugural “Buddy Run.”

One to Three Months To Live: Now What?

Potomac resident writes of her triumph over diagnosis.

She returned to Potomac to die — a 30-year-old woman who had been given the diagnosis that she had a lethal non-cancerous cervical spinal cord tumor and would not live more than three months. What is it like to be given this diagnosis — and then survive? How did she wake up each day with the strength and courage to fight the prognosis and still be able to be a wife and a mother to her three young sons?

‘Peter Pan’ Takes Flight at Winston Churchill

Performance opens April 19.

Details “Peter Pan” the musical will be presented at the Winston Churchill High School auditorium on Friday, April 19 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 20 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, April 21 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for seniors and children under 12. Tickets can be purchased online at www.wchsarts.com or in the lobby box office outside Bish Auditorium, 11300 Gainsborough Road, Potomac. The box office will be open one hour before each performance. Peter, Pan, Wendy, John, Tinker Bell, the Lost Boys, Tiger Lily and definitely the notably evil Captain Hook will be journeying by air and sea to the Winston Churchill High School auditorium on Friday, April 19 through Sunday, April 21.

Benny’s Bar and Grill To Open

New restaurant promises “Best Drink in Town.”

Potomac entrepreneur Benson Fischer will soon be revealing a new concept in dining and entertainment to open this spring in the Cabin John Shopping Center. Benny’s Bar and Grill, debuting in the former Popeye’s location, has been remodeled, expanded and retrofitted into a 240-seat restaurant. Fischer has designed the eatery, resplendent with comfortable leather booths, stonework, retro tin ceilings, open-air seating and a two-sided bar with the latest in mixology machines.

‘Giving Kids the Drive’

Third annual First Tee luncheon to support program.

Thousands of children in Montgomery County have learned to play golf each summer through a junior golf program called The First Tee of Montgomery County. Through this organization, they gain more than learning to putt, chip and drive the ball.

Holy Child’s ‘Tiger Trot’ Returns

School teams with firefighters for 5k Run/Walk.

Runners will assume their positions and leap forward at the sound of the starter’s gun — and walkers will follow behind, enjoying a stroll through picturesque neighborhoods of Potomac. The 2013 Holy Child “Tiger Trot” — a 5k run/walk that spans the hills of Avenel and then circles onto Persimmon Tree Drive and ends back at the Bradley Boulevard school grounds will take place on the morning of April 14.

Making New and Old Residents Feel Right at Home

Potomac Area Newcomers’ Club members “are always on the go.”

“I don’t know how I would have survived if it hadn’t been for the Potomac Area Newcomers’ Club (PANC),” said Dottie White of Potomac. “This organization was a lifesaver after I moved here from New Jersey to be closer to my kids.

Team Saij

Bowl-a-thon to support Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy research

“We are in a race against time,” said Vicky Singh with a determined look on her face. “It is imperative that we raise as much money as possible to fund promising research to find drugs to treat and cure Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) — to save children’s lives.

Gallery Har Shalom Debuts ‘Adding In, Taking Away’

Where creative vision takes shape.

Gallery Har Shalom has opened its exhibit “Adding In, Taking Away” — a showcase of talent by five area artists. Now through April 22, the gallery presents sculpture, woodworking and artwork created with a variety of printmaking techniques.

Cooperative Effort Strengthens Play

Holy Child produces “Beauty and the Beast.”

More than 90 students participated in the cast and crew for “Beauty and the Beast,” presented March 1 and 2 by The Connelly School of the Holy Child. The result was “incredible and amazing,” said director Elsbeth Reaves Fager.

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