Posts Tagged ‘75’
On Saturday, November 17, Greenbelt’s Mishkan Torah Synagogue celebrated the 80th birthday of its long-time member Frank Pearlman and the City of Greenbelt’s 75 anniversary with an evening gala program. The title of event was “Frank & Greenbelt, Aging With Grace,” and it was attended by members of the synagogue, the City Council, and Greenbelt residents.
Saul Oresky (center) leads the Havdalah service which is a Jewish ceremony marking the end of Shabbat and is performed on Saturday night. Holding the Havdalah candle on the left is Rachel White Greenfield and on the right is Jeffrey Rosen, tonight’s master of ceremonies.
The Greenbelt 75th Anniversary Dinner Dance Gala took place on Saturday, October 13 at Martin’s Crosswinds in Greenbelt East. 450 guests including elected officials, past and present, pioneer families, current residents and friends attended the event.
The sign for Martin’s Crosswinds is illuminated in green light in honor of Greenbelt.
As part of this year’s 75th anniversary celebration, several movie showings have been scheduled at various sections of the city. On February 10, Three Brave Men was shown in the Greenbelt Community Center. On May 23, Grapes of Wrath was shown at Greenbriar Community Building in Greenbelt East. This past Saturday, it was Treasure Island at Springhill Lake Recreation Center in Greenbelt West. The announcement reads: “The Greenbelt 75th Anniversary Committee invites you to enjoy this 1950 Disney version of Robert Louis Stevenson’s adventure story (1883) of piracy, a treasure map, sword fights, sea voyages, and youthful heroism features the flamboyant, one-legged anti-hero Long John Silver.”
Various editions of Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel Treasure Island are displayed on a table in Springhill Lake Recreation Center’s multipurpose room, along with a pirate tricorn hat. The one that is standing up contains illustrations by the famed artist N.C. Wyeth and is considered a masterpiece among illustrated books.
Greenbelt Voices is Greenbelt-based Transitions Theater’s first production. It comprises of more than 20 dramatic monologues telling the stories of Greenbelt residents. The show debuted at the Greenbelt Arts Center in July 2010, and this year, to celebrate Greenbelt’s 75th anniversary, the director of the show Misha R’kingsley selected nine monologues and they were performed at the New Deal Café on Sunday June 24.
Director Misha R’kingsley introduces Greenbelt Voices. She says that the show premiered in July 2010 and before that she spent a year interviewing people and collecting stories. She says that she moved to Greenbelt in 2002 and wanted to know “what made this town tick.” “I wanted to hear everything, the good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful, and everything in between.” She interviewed more than 20 people and some also sent her stories by email. The monologues are performed by a group of actors including a few original storytellers.
The third session of the Greenbelt 75th Anniversary Symposium is titled “Towards Inclusion: Diversity in Greenbelt.” The moderator is Dan Hamlin, pastor of the Greenbelt Community Church, who has long been active in interfaith efforts in Greenbelt. Christal Batey and Karen Haseley from the City of Greenbelt talk about city initiatives for seniors and citizens with disabilities, and Frank DeBernardo speaks about GrenBeLT Pride, a LGBT group.
Moderator Dan Hamlin has been pastor at the Greenbelt Community Church for 28 years. He starts with religious quotas which were in place when the government selected Greenbelt’s first residents. The quotas were based on the District of Columbia census of 1920, the most recent available then, and were intended to ensure that the same percentages of Catholics, Protestants, and Jews lived in Greenbelt as in Washington, D.C. A worship center was planned with four sanctuaries in the same building, for Catholics, Protestants, Jews, and Mormons respectively, but it was never built. An interfaith group was founded in June 1939–Hamlin marvels at its name during a time of global conflict and great uncertainty–“Permanent Conference of Religious Life in Greenbelt.” The organization is now Greenbelt Interfaith Leadership Association in which Hamlin has played a large role. He talks about people of all faiths helped to build Mishkan Torah Synagogue, and the synagogue, as a token of appreciation, gave a lectern to the Community Church with a plaque that says: “Dedicated to the glory of God and the human brotherhood.” He theorizes that spiritual connections were strong in Greenbelt because people came from all parts of the country and had to build brand new social support networks. In the other two green towns, there were existing ties. He recounts two events that he took part in: an organized effort to prevent a cross burning by the K.K.K. and a community commemoration of 9/11. The 9/11 commemoration took place by Greenbelt Lake. Hamlin recalls the priest at St. Hugh Catholic Church came with a large bag of candles and Rabbi Jonathan Cohen of Mishkan Torah Synagogue, then a Canadian citizen, holding an American flag and standing together with Muslim imams.
Members of the Greenbelt 75th Anniversary Committee were appointed by the City Council, and the Committee has been meeting every month since April 2010 to plan a year-long series of events to celebrate Greenbelt’s 75th anniversary in 2012. On February 13, I attended the first full committee meeting of the year and took these pictures.
The committee meets in the Greenbelt Community Center. Attending tonight’s meeting are from upper right Lois Rosado, Betty Timer, Barbara Havekost, Barbara Young, Carol Malveaux (co-chair), Isabelle Gournay, Frank DeBernardo, Janubi Devendra, Dave Mills (co-chair), Sheila Maffay-Tuthill, and Megan Searing Young (staff liaison to the city).
Mary Gawlik and Loraine DiPietro are Greenbelt Resident Artists, and this year they are making commemorative tiles for Greenbelt’s 75th anniversary. On February 5, during the monthly Artful Afternoon open studio, I visit their studio on the third floor of the Community Center and ask them about the tiles.
Mary Gawlik (left) specializes in ceramic art tiles and tile panels, and Loraine DiPietro is a clay artist. They share a studio with two other artists at Room 302 of the Community Center.