301-926-2256 [email protected]

Town Meeting News…

Mayor’s Volunteer of the Year:
…to Joan Mahaffey for her tireless efforts to preserve the woods and many other contributions to Town issues.

Preservation Award:
…to Dick Cavicchi and Gretchen Horlacher for their renovations at 127 Grove Avenue.

Preservation Award for New Construction:
…to Collin and Erica Turner for accessory structure complimenting the original 1914 home at 405 Brown Street.

Town Elections Results

Chairman of the Board of Elections Supervisors Nick Suzich reported the results of the Town election at the Annual Meeting on May 9, 2020. There were 176 ballots cast.

Mayor: One-Year Term
John G. Compton 147 votes
Joli McCathran 3 votes
Craig English 1 vote
Joe Clark 1 vote
Georgette Cole 1 vote
Sean Kelly 1 vote
Gray Yachup 1 vote

Council: Three-Year Terms – 2 Elected
David Cosson 116 votes
Gray Yachup 113 votes
Audrey Maskery 105 votes
William Saar 1 vote
Mary Warfield 1 vote

Town Meeting Adopts FY 2021 Budget and Tax Rate

The property tax rate for the fiscal year beginning July 1 will decrease to the constant yield rate of
$0.2587/$100 assessed valuation. The dwelling unit charge, tied to the cost of trash and recycling collection, will remain at $130 per dwelling per year.

Copies of the adopted budget detail are available at the Town Office and are posted on the Town website. If you have questions, please contact Treasurer Mary Challstrom at [email protected] (301-926-4498) or Mayor John Compton at [email protected] (301-330-8264).

Town Council Enacts Ordinance Adopting the Town Budget and Tax Rates for FY 2021
Maryland law requires municipal budgets to be adopted by ordinance. On May 18, the Town Council affirmed the action taken by the May 9 Town Meeting and enacted Ordinance 2020-05 adopting the identical budget and tax rates.

Town Council News…

Next meeting: Monday, June 8, 2020; 7:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM at;

Or Dial-in to 301-715-8592 Meeting ID: 297 850 640
Password: 074385

Actions at the May Town Council meeting included:

  • Enactment of Ordinance 2020-05; Adopting the Town Budget for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2020, Through June 30, 2021, and Levying an Ad Valorem Tax on all Assessable Property Within the Town of Washington Grove, Maryland
  • Approved contracting with PEPCO to convert our street and walkway lighting from induction to LED bulbs at the same color and lumens as our existing bulbs
  • Approval of Proclamation Declaring June 5, 2020 National Gun Violence Awareness Day in Washington Grove

Town Treasurer Position

The Town of Washington Grove seeks a qualified individual to fill the position of Town Treasurer beginning Spring-Summer 2021. The Treasurer has broad responsibilities, functioning as financial officer, bookkeeper, purchasing agent and in other capacities to insure smooth operation of Town government. The Treasurer provides essential continuity and guidance to help elected officials and other volunteers be effective in serving the Town. The position requires independence, organizational skills, and the capacity to effectively communicate and work with diverse individuals.

This part-time position (approx. 10 hours per week) does not include benefits. Work hours are flexible. Applicants must be able to provide their own workspace and computer/printer. Strong computer skills are essential. Please send expressions of interest in writing to Mayor John Compton at PO Box 1187 or [email protected].

Brush and Yard Debris Disposal Container for Resident Use

Please remember that Residents are not permitted to place yard debris on Town property. The Town does not collect resident’s yard debris. Grass, brush, and trimmings should not be left on our road and walkway rights of way, in our Parks, or on the borders or in the Woods.

Normally you should transport to the Shady Grove transfer station. However, the Shady Grove transfer station is closed drop-offs by individuals, being classified as a non-essential activity. For the duration, the Town is making available a large container, located near the Maintenance Shed, for residents to deposit yard debris. PLEASE NOTE: only yard debris is to be placed in this container. No trash and no non-organic material whatsoever.

Planning Commission News…

Next meeting: Wed, June 3, 2020; 7:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM. As part of the Town’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, this Planning Commission Meeting will be conducted online, rather than in person.

Residents and the public may access using Meeting ID: 781 347 688
By dialing in to: 301-715-8592 and following the audio instructions.
OR by joining the Zoom videoconference at: https://zoom.us/j/781347688

Building Permit Submission Deadline
The deadline to submit a building permit application for approval by the Planning Commission and review by the Historic Preservation Commission is the 2nd Wednesday of the month prior to the PC meeting at which the permit will be reviewed (this will be in the following month). This timing ensures the HPC will be able to complete a formal review before the PC meeting as this review is required for the PC to approve the permit in a timely fashion. If you are considering any renovation or building project at your house, be sure to get a copy of the procedures to apply for a Town Building Permit which will help you through the Town’s process.

Permits Up for Approval in June: None

2020 Master Plan Work Session

Please note the 2020 Master Plan draft versions are available on the Master Plan page of the Town website.

Work Session Notice: Wednesday, June 17, 2020, 7:30 pm, REMOTE ACCESS ONLY
As part of the Town’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, this Master Plan Work Session will be conducted online, rather than in person.

Work Session Agenda: 1. Approval of Agenda; 2. Approval of Previous Work Session Minutes; 3. Review 2020 0520 Master Plan Working Draft; 4. Adjourn

We will be reviewing new material from the Washington Grove Safety and Emergency Preparedness Committee for a completely new Section #11 (Emergency Preparedness with Risk Management and Hazard Mitigation).

Work Session Access:
Residents and the public may access using Meeting ID: 781 347 688
By dialing in to: 301-715-8592 and following the audio instructions.
OR by joining the Zoom videoconference at: https://zoom.us/j/781347688

Border Committee Meeting

Next Meeting: June 4, 2020; 7:30 pm

Same ZOOM access as Planning Commission. For more information contact Peter Nagrod; [email protected]

Historic Preservation Commission News…

Next meeting: Tuesday, June 16, 2020; 7:30 p.m.
The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM.

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 918 5919 8359
Password: 008571

Dial by your location:
Meeting ID: 918 5919 8359
Password: 008571
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/ketwJ8UFB

Chautauqua Came to Washington Grove—and an Auditorium Would Follow

We are grateful for the research of Robinson & Associates in preparation of the Updated and Expanded Washington Grove Historic District nomination. Excerpts from their work, which follow, focus on the Chautauqua Movement and its manifestation in Washington Grove.

The Chautauqua Movement developed in the last quarter of the nineteenth century to provide programming and courses for cultural uplift and recreation. Those who established Chautauquas across the country largely based their program on their namesake, the original Chautauqua Institution in western New York. The Chautauqua Institution was founded by Methodist bishop John Heyl Vincent and business leader and philanthropist Lewis Miller as a summer school for Sunday school teachers. It was located at a Methodist camp meeting facility on New York’s Chautauqua Lake. Vincent and Miller’s institution added an education component to the Methodist camp meeting program, and, because of these origins, Chautauquas had a long-running connection to American Methodism and camp meetings.

In 1878, Vincent began the Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle (CLSC), a four-year, mail-order reading program that provided a full curriculum, complete with textbooks and exams. Participants were required to read four to six substantial books per year in literature, history, sociology, and science. Students had the choice of either reading on their own or joining a local reading circle. By 1900, around 50,000 people had completed the program. At the end of the program, CLSC participants were awarded a diploma and encouraged to attend a ceremony known as “Recognition Day” at the New York Chautauqua, at an independent assembly, or at a village reading circle.

In 1901, Washington Grove Camp Meeting Association trustees, some of whom were behind the Chautauqua in Glen Echo, established an exploratory to study the feasibility of a Washington Grove Chautauqua. The committee, according to Washington Grove historian Philip Edwards, not only investigated its viability, but planned a complete season of Chautauqua programs, with camp and temperance meetings worked into the schedule. Chautauqua programming officially began at Washington Grove on July 4, 1902, to an enthusiastic reception. Approximately one hundred events were planned for the first season, which ran through the month of September. Additionally, outdoor games and recreation were encouraged. The Chautauqua concept was not entirely new to Washington Grove. Recitation, music, and reading had been a regular fixture of the association’s hotel, and camp meeting speakers had engaged with social and political topics. Musical performances had also been common there since at least 1889. Before Chautauqua, the Grove was relatively quiet for much of the year, until the camp meeting attracted guests by the thousands. The arrival of Chautauqua brought new energy to the Grove and meant that its streets were busy throughout the entire summer.

Like its counterparts across the country, Washington Grove’s Chautauqua offered a diverse array of programming and classes, including scientific lectures, political speeches, Stereopticon picture shows, minstrel shows, self-improvement instruction, and recitations from Shakespeare. The roster of performers and speakers included musicians, professors, and religious leaders. A 1906 program of the Washington Grove Chautauqua listed classes in physical culture, art, music, kindergarten, and self-expression. At the end of the season, “Recognition Day” ceremonies were held for CLSC program graduates in the auditorium.

Next Month: Chautauqua attendance in Washington Grove outgrows the capacity of the Tabernacle and Assembly Hall, and an Auditorium is built…

Forestry & Beautification News…

Next Meeting: Wed, June 10, 2020; 7:30 p.m. online via ZOOM.

Residents and the public may access using Meeting ID: 781 347 688
By dialing in to: 301-715-8592 and following the audio instructions.
OR by joining the Zoom videoconference at: https://zoom.us/j/781347688

The F&B Committee will be having a (short!) extra meeting this summer to welcome our new Council Liaison, Gray Yachup. We’ll also discuss adding a co-Chair to the committee.

Lake Committee News…

Next Meeting: Thursday, June 18,2020 at 7:30 p.m.
The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM.

Join Zoom Meeting:

By Phone: 301 715 8592
Meeting ID: 896 8064 2059
Password: 718388

Maple Lake (tentative) Opening
Maple Lake is tentatively opening on June 6 (weekends only) then full-time on June 15, with Lifeguards on duty from 12 noon to 6 PM.

Lake Users must follow the following guidelines:

  • Bring your own face mask, hand sanitizer, wipes or spray.
  • Provide your own chair, toys. (Mark them with your names.)
  • Monitor your children for their safety – social distancing, and not sharing toys.
  • Don’t come to the lake if you are ill, or don’t feel comfortable with the situation at the lake.

Swim Lessons have been canceled for the summer.

At his time, we have no plans for Party Permits due to physical distancing guidelines.

Woods Committee News…

Next Meeting: Monday, June 1, 2020; 7:30p.m.
The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM. To join the WC meeting, please use:

Phone: 301 715 8592 / Password: 866680
Meeting ID: 842 9256 9073
Or https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84292569073?pwd=MEpJcGdsYTIraENYeW1yczNPMWt2UT09

The WC continues with our project to spread woodchips along established trails in the East Woods. Piles of woodchips have been placed near the Ridge Road entrance to the Franklin Trail and near the Grove Road entrance to the McCauley Trail. If you would like to help with this project and spread woodchips along the trails, please contact Joan Mahaffey. Social distancing guidelines will be observed.

The WC is also working in the West Woods to mitigate soil erosion and stormwater runoff damage to trees and shrubs adjacent to Maple Lake; to manually remove garlic mustard; and pick up trash. Volunteers are needed to help us remove invasive plants and trash along the trails.

Please remember that our East and West Woods are Forest Preserves and for passive recreation only. Like for all Town property, do not dig or remove plants. Building, even from natural fallen materials, is prohibited. Do not dump yard clippings in the Woods. Please do not remove signage. Our “Bradfield Crossing” sign in the East Woods disappeared in the last few weeks.

We are happy to see so many residents enjoying the trails in our East and West Woods. Native plants continue to emerge. Ferns beds along the West Woods trail towards the Town Crest border are especially breathtaking. Web sites such as www.nativeplantcenter.net provide descriptions and photographs of native grasses and ground covers, shrubs, and trees. Focus your search for the Piedmont Region. Stay healthy and happy!

Recreation Committee News…

Next Meeting: Wednesday, June 3, 2020; 7:30 p.m.
The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM.

Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 725 5404 3850
Password: 988494

Film Society News…

WG Film Society Goes Virtual
This month, the Washington Grove Film Society launches an experiment in sociable but social-distanced film appreciation. Join the fun in 3 easy steps:

1. Before Sunday, June 28, enjoy watching “Woman at War.”

In daring solo missions of sabotage, Halla strikes out against Iceland’s aluminum industry and its environmental depredations. However, she must rethink her priorities when a long-pending adoption application promises to bring a child into her life. Engaging and eccentric, with glorious landscapes and quirky music, this film offers a lot to discuss, from its characters’ choices to its surprising twists.

2018, 100 minutes; filmed in Iceland; Icelandic with English subtitles; directed by Benedikt Erlingsson.

Find the film free on your Hulu subscription service or for $3.99 from Amazon, YouTube, Google Play, FandangoNow, Vudu, or DirectTV.

2. Send an email to Freda at [email protected] before June 27, to receive a link to the Zoom discussion.

3. Log in to Zoom at 7:30 pm on Sunday, June 28 to hear your neighbors’ thoughts about the movie, and share yours in a moderated discussion.

We expect this event to be a hit and are planning a sequel in July. Watch this space!

Washington Grove Cares News…

If You Don’t Regularly Read the Washington Grove Listserv…
You can receive the occasional but useful announcements of WGC activities and resources without relying on the WG Yahoo listserv. Contact Betsy Klinger ([email protected]) to add your name to a list created to supplement the listserv when we send out WGC notices.

Coordinating Shopping Trips During the COVID 19 Epidemic
Working together, we can reduce the total number of trips between the Grove and groceries/pharmacies and help neighbors at the same time.

Impromptu Grocery/Pharmacy Trips
If you are going to a particular grocery store/pharmacy and can pick up items for others, consider posting a message to the listserv ([email protected]) hours before or even the night before you head out. Mention which store you plan to visit and list your phone number so neighbors can contact you before emailing requests.

Regularly Scheduled Grocery Trips
Two volunteers have offered to shop for others at regular times each week; contact them directly.

MONDAYS: (contact by Sun. 5 pm) Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, MOM’s, or Aldi’s // Call or text Caitlin Bethepu at 414-208-8661
WEDNESDAY evenings: (contact by Wed. noon) and
SATURDAY early mornings: (contact by Fri. 5 pm) Giant Food Store // Call or text Paul Boynton at 301-367-7830, or email [email protected]

Woman’s Club News…

The Washington Grove Woman’s Club

[ We Had a Successful Virtual Flower Show! ]

Despite the pandemic, we were able to continue the long tradition of the spring Flower Show in a virtual format. If you have not had the chance to see it yet, the link is:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/s2h4enhyjbk5c8b/Womans%20Club%202020%20Virtual%20Flower%20Show.pdf?dl=0, or email Marilynn Frey at [email protected] and she’ll send you a pdf copy of the show.

Bring Your Own Porch?
Our annual Progressive Porch Party, scheduled for June 18th, has been cancelled. However, we are exploring the possibility of having a Zoom event instead. Everyone would be on their own porch, or in their own home, with their own snacks and drinks. The evening would feature a guest speaker and then opened conversation via Zoom. If this sounds like something you would be interested in, please email either Joan Mahaffey ([email protected]) or Marilynn Frey ([email protected]). We will let you know how the plans are progressing and send you an invitation as the idea progresses ??.

We are Still Working on the new Town Directory
Despite the odds, we are still trying to publish the 2020-2022 Washington Grove Directory. It has been a challenge this time and selling the ads that support our Directory has been particularly difficult. If you have a business or you have contacts with businesses, please contact Marilynn Frey ([email protected]) to get a signup form. Most businesses provide a simple business card.

After the Quarantine Ends, You Can Rent Our Clubhouse!
Once life returns to normal, this historic clubhouse will be available for rent to Town residents from mid-March to mid-December. It is ideal for parties, showers, wedding receptions, meetings, or other such events. Our rates are reasonable, and members of the Club receive a significant discount. For more information about this lovely facility, please contact Cynthia Werts (301-926-1668) or Joli McCathran (301-869-5358).

Joining the Woman’s is easy
The Woman’s Club dues are a modest $15 per year and can be paid at any event, or by sending a check to The Woman’s Club of Washington Grove, to PO Box 354, Washington Grove, MD 20880.

Your dues make it possible for us to support Town programs such as The Summer In the Parks, the Acorn Library and the Holiday Show. They also let us host our annual Town events like the January White Elephant Sale, the February Chili Supper, Project Linus, the Spring Egg Hunt, the May Flower Show, the June Progressive Porch Party, the September Pot Luck Supper and guest speakers. Plus, all year-round we collect for our Community Outreach programs.

For the Washington Grove Elementary School

This outreach project has been on hold while the school is closed and students are doing online classes, we hope that by fall, we will again need to fill the closet, gather coats and bring music to the students.

The Teachers Closet
We collect school supplies all year round for the Teachers Closet. Our aim is to keep it filled with things like glue sticks, pencils and sharpeners, paper, hand sanitizers and tissues, and other supplies. Without our help, teachers will all too often end up buying these things out of their own pockets.

Winter Coats, Hats, Scarves and Gloves
We try to keep the Teachers Closet filled with winter coats, hats, scarves, and gloves so that no child goes without through the bitter winter months.

Bringing Music to the Students
This Fall, the school asked us to help ensure that all children can participate in the Music Programs. We are hoping to donate resin, reeds, instruction books and other necessities for a successful instrumental music program. Checks should be made out to the Woman’s Club and marked for donation to the WGES Music Program.

Working with Interfaith Works for the Children
As the less fortunate children, like the rest of us, must stay at home, the need for things to brighten their lives is even greater.

Small Gifts
While the less fortunate children of our County need essentials, they also need occasional treats in their lives. We help provide these by collecting Birthday Presents and small Treasure Chest items to be distributed through Interfaith works.

Much Needed New Underwear
There is always a need for new underwear for boys and girls from toddlers to teens. We have developed sources for purchasing the underwear, so the easiest way to help with this need is through money donations.

White Socks and Toiletries for Area Shelter
The small, travel sized toiletries from hotels are always needed by shelter residents, and we collect and distribute them. Also, winter is hard enough for the homeless without them going without socks! We continue to collect new white socks.

Where to Bring Your Donations
Whatever pulls at your heart strings, we have a need you can fulfill. Even though our Clubhouse is currently closed, we have bins on the porch to collect for our Community Outreach Programs, or you can drop off your contributions in the painted can on Wendy Weisbard’s porch at 119 Grove Road. You bring them and we will sort where they go! Checks are always appreciated too, just put in the memo field if you want your donation to go to a specific project and mail to The Woman’s Club, PO Box 354, Washington Grove, MD 20880.

Stormwater Management Committee

Next Meeting: Tuesday, June 9, 2020; 7:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM conference. The Stormwater Management committee meets the 2nd Tuesday of each month. We welcome all interested residents!

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 834 7860 8761
Password: 621940
Dial by your location – +1 301 715 8592

Questions, concerns or ideas please contact:
Robert N. Johnson at [email protected] or 301 346-6267

Emergency Preparedness Committee News…

Next Meeting: Thursday, June 25, 2020 at 7:30 p.m.

REMOTE ACCESS ONLY by using Zoom videoconference at https://zoom.us/j/913357212

COVID-19: Please check the Town website for information relating to COVID-19 at https://washingtongrovemd.org/community/community-resources/covid-19-information/. As we head towards gradual opening, we recommend continuing to take precautions such as wearing masks, washing hands, and keeping social distancing.

Lighting Committee News…

Next Meeting: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM conference. We meet the fourth Wednesday of every month. We will be meeting via a Zoom Conference and all are welcome to attend! The details are below.

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 882 2835 9443
Password: 486900
Dial by your location. +1 301 715 8592

Questions please contact Virginia Quesada at:
301 706-7933 (cell) [email protected]

Washington Grove UMC News…

Washington Grove United Methodist Church Sunday services continue to be temporarily suspended.

As we continue to Stay at Home during the COVID-19 crises, the Church has been enjoying Sunday morning Zoom services. If you would like to join us, please contact Pastor Andrew Peck-McClain at [email protected] to be included.

Once we can again go out into the world, please join us on Sunday mornings at 11:00 am at the Washington Grove United Methodist Church, 303 Chestnut Road, Washington Grove, MD 20880 (301-869-3753).

Washington Grove United Methodist Church is a Reconciling Congregation, which means we believe that each person is a precious creation of God and is of sacred worth. We welcome and celebrate persons of every gender identity, racial or ethnic background, sexual orientation, and physical or mental ability into full participation in the life of this faith community. We celebrate the gift of love and affirm all loving relations and marriage

Bulk Trash Pickup SATURDAY, JUNE 6, 2020

Materials may include furniture, appliances (nothing with freon like air conditioning units), rugs, large toys, small auto parts, etc. Material may NOT include construction by-products from your renovation projects, large automotive parts or tires. Items should not contain gasoline or motor oil. Please keep your metal separate from the rest of your items.


June 2020 – Coming Events Calendar

(All meetings via ZOOM Conference)

June 1 » Woods Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 3 » Planning Commission 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 3 » Recreation Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 4 » Border Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 5 » National Gun Violence Awareness Day
June 6 » Bulk Trash Collection (fortunately – NOT by Zoom)
June 8 » Town Council Meeting 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 9 » Stormwater Management 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 10 » Forestry & Beautification 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 10 » Building Permit Submission Deadline
June 16 » Historic Preservation Commission 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 17 » Master Plan Work Session 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 18 » Lake Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 24 » Lighting Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
June 25 » Emergency Preparedness & Safety 7:30 pm ZOOM
July 6 » Woods Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM

2020 Mayor and Council Areas of Responsibility and Contact Information:

Mayor, John G. Compton: 301-330-8264 (h), 240-432-5700 (c)
[email protected]

Darrell Anderson: 301-963-8555
[email protected]
Historic Preservation Commission, Lighting, Maintenance

Charlie Challstrom: 301-926-4498
[email protected]
McCathran Hall, Planning Commission, Other (Montgomery Municipal Cable, Census Liaison, FEMA Floodplain Coordinator)

Dave Cosson: 202-236-8833
[email protected]
Contracts, Woods, Stormwater Management

Marida Hines: 301-580-1026
[email protected]
Communications, Dog Park, Recreation, Website

Patty Klein: 301-926-2256 (Town Office)
[email protected]
Emergency Preparedness & Safety, Maple Lake

Gray Yachup: 240-731-3742
[email protected]
Forestry & Beautification (Incl. Memorials), Playgrounds, Roads & Walkways, Shady Grove Crossing, Washington Grove Conservation Park

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