Monthly Archives: December 2010
Folks — just to let you know Equinox is running a special that seems to allow you to join without an initiation fee if you sign up by Friday. Check it out!
We may not have been hit with the Snow Storm that the North East did, but Bethesda was not completely unscathed. The freezing wind took its toll on this door outside the Midland bank on Norfolk Ave in Bethesda. YIKES !!! Stay warm out there.
Nice to see the Washington Post recognizing the wonderful contribution Yamas has made to the local food/community scene — see here for the review.
An interesting story on the latest Purple Line issues:
Peter Gray, vice chairman of the Coalition of the Capital Crescent Trail, favors an underground tunnel and believes an above-ground bike path would unnecessarily split the Capital Crescent Trail and the Georgetown Branch. The state and county should find a way to pay for the project, even if it is expensive, he said. “I mean, times are lean, but it would be a huge disservice to the trail and to the county to cut it in two,” Gray said.
Friends — couple of fun sales updates!!
Room & Board will be having it’s annual (and ONLY) Clearance sale beginning December 26th. 60% off of discontinued furniture and accessories. This is a huge deal because it’s the only sale Room & Board has and they will be making room for their 2011 collection launching shortly there after.
Ginger will also be having a sale December 26th-December 31st in which all dresses will be 30% off! It’s the best opportunity to find the perfect New Year’s Eve dress. Designers include Yoana Baraschi, Plenty by Tracy Reese, Chloe & Reese, Calypso St. Barth, Tracy Reese and more.
Like many hamlets since swallowed up in an burgeoning metropolitan area, Bethesda’s roots are rather humble. A typical outlying settlement, Bethesda began life as a small collection of buildings alongside a busy road that had once been a Native American trail.
The town’s viabiliy was cemented in the early nineteenth century when the thoroughfare was converted into a toll road called the Washington and Rockville Turnpike, transporting tobacco and other commodities between Georgetown and Rockville, and up to Frederick. Around the toll and a solitary store, a small settlement grew up that would one day become Bethesda.
Originally named “Darcy’s Store” after local business owner William E. Darcy, the growing town acquired its definitive name in 1871 when postmaster Robert Franck named it after the Bethesda Meeting House, a Presbyterian church built in 1820. The church burned down in 1849 but was rebuilt the same year on an adjacent site, where it stands to this day.
The church in turn took its name from the biblical Pool of Bethesda in Jerusalem, a place associated with healing. In ancient Greek manuscripts, the name of the Pool is often mistaken for that of the New Testament town Bethsaida, described as a “desert place” and believed by scholars to be the possible location where Jesus fed the five thousand. The origin of the church’s name has led to a common misconception that the town took its name directly from the Pool of Bethesda.
Many villages grew up around crossroads – mini hubs where travelers congregated before continuing in their various directions – and Bethesda was no different. Straddling a crossroads for most of the nineteenth century, the town was little more than a blacksmith, post office, church, school, some houses and a few stores. But that was set to change after the turn of the twentieth century, when the newly installed streetcar line connected Bethesda to the nearby District of Columbia.
This enabled suburbanization to take a hold, with the neighborhoods of Battery Park, Woodmont, Drummond and Edgemoor springing up on farmland adjacent to the turnpike. Well-to-do men like Merle Thorpe built mansions in fine grounds and help found the Woodmont Country Club – now on land occupied by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Thorpe’s home, Pook’s Hill, accomodated the exiled Norwegian Royal Family during World War Two.
Pook’s Hill was inspired by Rudyard Kipling’s 1906 story, Puck of Pook’s Hill. Puck was the mischievous sprite of English folklore also known as Robin Goodfellow, who is thought to have lent his name to the popular outlaw Robin Hood – or Robin of the Greenwood. Nevertheless, it is a fun pagan injection into Bethesda’s otherwise biblical heritage.
The rapid expansion of government during World War Two correlated to a rapid expansion of Bethesda, with the National Naval Medical Center (1939) and NIH (1953) built north of the downtown. As a result, medical professionals, government contractors and business people have flocked to the area.
Bethesda has since become the core employment hub of southwestern Montgomery County, with many of its workers traveling from Washington, DC and vice versa. Major companies headquartered here today include defense giant Lockheed Martin, Mariott International, Honest Tea and Ritz Carlton.
Darcy’s Store is a weekly feature article about the history of Bethesda
I wanted to take a few minutes to write about a wonderful high end condo project that is being planned for Bethesda. The project, which is based around twin residential buildings, envisions 60 condos in the $750,000-$3,000,000 range combined with upscale retail in the downtown Bethesda area. The location for the project is the county owned parking lot on the corner of Woodmont and Bethesda avenue and it is being spear headed by Monty Hoffman and Doug Firstenberg. Mr. Hoffman is, of course, the head of PN Hoffman and Mr. Firstenberg is the head of StonebridgeCarras.
I for one am really looking forward to this effort moving forward, the lead time for delivery seems realistic (2014 I believe) and it would enhance an already vibrant downtown area. One interesting historical aspect is that one of the towers will be called Darcy — this is a nice nod to Bethesda’s roots (if you want to read a terrific post by my colleague Tom on the subject see here).
I intend to provide more info in the months ahead but want to leave this thread open for comments on this matter. What do you think of the project?
PS As ever, if I can assist with any real estate matter give me a call
Raj Purohit (240)4863921
Weichert Realtors Bethesda
Bit of a worry that we were in this group:
Millions of Americans in at least 31 U.S. cities could be drinking tap water contaminated with the harmful chemical hexavalent chromium, according to a report released Monday by the non-profit Environmental Working Group.
Here are the cities
1. Norman, Oklahoma
2. Honolulu, Hawaii
3. Riverside, California
4. Madison, Wisconsin
5. San Jose, California
6. Tallahassee, Florida
7. Omaha, Nebraska
8. Albuquerque, New Mexico
9. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
10. Bend, Oregon
11. Salt Lake City, Utah
12. Ann Arbor, Michigan
13. Atlanta, Georgia
14. Los Angeles, California
15. Bethesda, Maryland
16. Phoenix, Arizona
17. Washington, D.C.
18. Chicago, Illinois
19. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
20. Villanova, Pennsylvania
21. Sacramento, California
22. Louisville, Kentucky
23. Syracuse, New York
24. New Haven, Connecticut
25. Buffalo, New York
26. Las Vegas, Nevada
27. New York, New York
28. Scottsdale, Arizona
29. Miami, Florida
30. Boston, Massachusetts
31. Cincinnati, Ohio
Another nice soup receipe came in from a member of the community. Sounds interesting — let us know what you think if you manage to try it:
Corn, Onion and Potato Soup
1. Peel and boil 7-8 new potatoes for 20 minutes. Carefully drain, cool potatoes and cut into small pieces.
2. Lightly saute sweet corn and chopped onions with olive oil and black pepper.
3. Place the potatoes, sweet corn and onions in a large pot and cover with liquid mixture (3 parts water/ 1 part milk)
4. Pop in a couple of spoons of butter and a dash of garlic.
5. Heat up the pot and then simmer for 30 minute before serving.
Just heard that the Deli Maven will be celebrating his birthday this Friday (Dec 24th) by offering a selection of sandwiches at 1/2 price. Sounds like a wonderful opportunity to get a bit of good pre Xmas eating in! Lox and Cream cheese on sesame could be the way I’m going to go!