Category Archives: News

Category for general news items.

Message from Code Enforcement: Let It Snow!


Although we can’t say for sure, forecasts for our area are saying there is a good chance for some snow this year. With the potential for snow comes an opportunity for residents and business owners to show what good neighbors they can be. When it snows, we need to remove snow and ice from sidewalks so neighbors, children, and customers can travel safely. When sidewalks aren’t clear, people have to walk in the street or try to navigate dangerous patches of ice, so please be considerate of neighbors and the community and keep your sidewalks clear.

Would you be willing to help out your neighbor?
If your neighbor needs assistance clearing off their sidewalk, offer to give them a hand after you clear yours.


The City has regulations regarding snow removal.

  • Residents have until 12:00 noon on the day after a night in which it has fallen and accumulated or until 9:00 PM on the day in which it has fallen or accumulated.
  • Commercial establishments must keep their sidewalks clear between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM. The full width of your sidewalk must be clear unless full-width clearing is not feasible, in which case, at a minimum, a continuous three-foot-wide path of the paved sidewalk must be cleared.
  • Lastly, to protect our sidewalks and trees, the use of *rock salt is strictly prohibited on sidewalks or within 10 feet of trees.


*11.20.060 Manner of removal—Use of salt.

A. No person shall use rock salt on any public sidewalk.

B. No person shall dump, pour or spill salt or salt water or other deleterious matter upon any tree or tree space in any public place, or keep or maintain within 10 feet of any such tree or tree space any receptacle from which salt water leaks or drips, or dump, pour or spill salt or salt water into any parking or unconcreted gutter so as to injure any tree or grass occupying public space.

The Sounds of Silents Film Screening with Peter Tavalin on Dec. 8

The Sounds of Silents Film Screening with Peter Tavalin

Free Film Screening 

Friday, Dec. 8 at 7:30 pm 

Takoma Park Community Center

7500 Maple Avenue 

Pianist and composer Peter Tavalin will bring an iconic silent film to life with a score improvised and performed live during a free film screening of the classic silent film Steamboat Bill, Jr.

In the 1928 comedy starring Buster Keaton, two college students return to the South after attending college in Boston and fall in love despite both of their fathers’ objections. The couple’s romance goes awry with prat falls, floods, a tornado, and other slapstick adventures. The film includes Keaton’s most famous and dangerous stunt when the entire two-ton façade of a house crashes to the ground around him while he stands in the precise location of an open second-story window.

Local resident Peter Tavalin has improvised live scores for more than 25 silent films during the past 30 years and has performed at film festivals, First Night celebrations, universities, and public schools across the country. Trained at the Berklee College of Music, he plays a synthesizer to create a modern sensibility that conveys the sounds of an entire orchestra.

“The synthesizer provides a big palette of sounds,” he said. “Simple, sweet strings with a flute for one scene, brass blaring for another with cymbals crashing when the action on the screen gets more frantic.”

Steamboat Bill, Jr. has been referenced in many movies that followed, beginning with Walt Disney’s Steamboat Willie, which was released six months later and debuted Mickey Mouse.

“Before sound in films, the actors relied on body language to tell the story, and the music was always live in theaters and integral to the film’s success,” Tavalin said. “Since I’m improvising, I can play the same movie over and over again and it still feels fresh to me.”

In 1980, a friend and theater owner in Brattleboro, Vermont asked Tavalin to improvise a live score for the 1926 Buster Keaton film The General. “Two minutes into watching the movie, I was hooked,” he said. “I already knew what I could add to the experience because I grew up learning jazz so I’m comfortable with improvisation.”

Tavalin said he only has to watch a film twice before he can improvise a score. The best compliment he has received is when an audience member forgets he is playing live and thinks the score was composed for the film.

Tavalin also teaches piano and plays in the High Standards jazz group. You can learn more about him at He and his wife moved to Takoma Park in 2021 to be closer to their daughter and her family.

“Takoma Park has a great sense of community and the City’s Takoma Park Arts series offers a great level of support for local performers and artists,” he said. “After performing at other venues from New England to Florida, I’m excited to debut this performance here in Takoma Park.”

The Takoma Park Arts series is organized by the City’s Arts and Humanities Division and includes free film screenings, art exhibitions, poetry readings, theater, and dance performances at the Takoma Park Community Center at 7500 Maple Avenue. No tickets or reservations are required. You can sign up for our weekly e-newsletter to receive more info at

Long Branch 5K Fun Run Will be Held on Sunday, November 19, 2023 at 8am!


The Long Branch 5K Fun Run is a family-oriented community event. Proceeds from the event fund efforts of Discover Long Branch and the Long Branch Business League, in addition to supporting the Long Branch Festival, one of our major community events!

The Long Branch 5K will be held on Sunday, November 19, 2023, in Long Branch, MD, starting at 8 a.m.

Race Date 
Sunday, November 19, 2023

Race Location
Long Branch Garland Neighborhood Park (8601 Garland Ave.) at the head of Long Branch trail.

Race Timeline:

  • 7:00 am: Same-day registration and packet pickup Long Branch – Garland Neighborhood Park, 8601 Garland Ave.
  • 8:00 am: 5K Run and Walk starts at the bottom of Long Branch – Garland Neighborhood Park, 8601 Garland Ave.


Post Race Fun
Post-race celebration and BRUNCH at El Golfo Restaurant!

  • Think Huevos Rancheros,
  • Breakfast Quesadillas,
  • Pupusas, French Toast,
  • and more!

If you would like to volunteer for the race, please email

Race Proceeds
Proceeds from the race fund efforts of Discover Long Branch and the Long Branch Business League, in addition to supporting the Long Branch Festival, one of our major community events!

Parking is available at the Long Branch Community Center(8700 Piney Branch Rd). Parking is limited, so you are encouraged to walk, cycle, or use the bus. Many bus lines service Piney Branch in front of the Long Branch Community Center.

Race Registration:
Online registration and day-of in-person registration are available at ($30)
Racers ages 17 and under may participate for $15.

For more information and race details, visit the Discover Long Branch website.

Metropolitan Branch Trail Update: City Awarded Funds to Complete Local Trail Designs


In September 2023, the Maryland Department of Transportation announced that the City of Takoma Park was awarded a grant to complete the technical plans for a full upgrade of the Metropolitan Branch Trail (MBT).

The $465,000 award through the state’s Kim Lamphier Bikeways Network Program will build on the preliminary design efforts completed in June 2023. The preliminary designs propose widening and resurfacing the existing trail, which currently does not meet Montgomery County or industry standards for a high-volume trail of its type. The design also proposed pedestrian-scale lighting, improved crossings, stormwater management infrastructure, and new striping on the trail. The City’s section of the MBT will connect with new sections of the trail in both the DC and Montgomery County, currently under development.

The next steps for the project include the finalization of the funding agreement with the state and then the selection of a contractor to complete the design work. Upon selection of a contractor, additional rounds of community engagement will be initiated to refine the preliminary designs.

Exploring Safe & Secure Alternatives for Package Deliveries


Online shopping has become a normal part of our lives. Having items delivered to your doorstep saves time and effort. But, with the rise in packages being delivered, there is also a rise in package thefts. To help you protect your valuable deliveries and ensure they reach you safely, we’ve put together a set of tips and strategies. Hopefully, this will minimize the chances of falling victim to package thieves while continuing to enjoy online shopping with peace of mind.

  • Request a Signature: Request that all packages require a signature upon delivery. This ensures that packages aren’t left unattended.
  • Install a Security Camera: Install security cameras that provide real-time alerts and allow you to communicate with delivery personnel remotely.
  • Track your Deliveries: Keep track of your packages by using tracking numbers and delivery notifications to know when they’ll arrive.
  • Choose In-Store Pickup: Opt for in-store pickup if the retailer offers this option. You can collect your packages at your convenience.
  • Schedule Deliveries: Many delivery services allow you to schedule specific delivery times when you’ll be at home.

Alternative Delivery Methods in Takoma Park:

Takoma Postal and Business Center
7304 Carroll Avenue, Takoma Park, MD (301) 270-5314 
Takoma Postal and Business Center will sign for your shipments when they arrive, record packages in their package receiving management system, notify you via phone, text, or email when you have a package and safely secure and store your packages until you pick them up at your convenience.

If you’re also worried about mail theft from your mailbox, they also allow you to rent a private mailbox and receive all of your mail and packages as part of the service without the extra package fees.

For information:


Amazon Lockers
Shipping to an Amazon Locker is free for Prime Amazon members (they only accept Amazon packages). You would need to contact the company if you are not a Prime Amazon member for pricing. There are places in or near Takoma Park that offer this service.

For information:

UPS Access Point
6315 New Hampshire Avenue, Takoma Park, MD 20912 (inside Dennis Express)
For info:

UPS My Choice: (there is a Basic (free) or Premium (paid) plan you can research on their web page.

  •  View all details for your inbound and outbound shipments
  •  Receive delivery alerts and photos
  • Change the delivery date or location
  • Tell your driver where to leave your package
  • View the estimated time for delivery
  • Follow shipments as they move toward their destinations
  • FedEx On-site: There are places in or near Takoma Park that offer this service. For information:


More alternative delivery methods:

  • Delivery to Workplace: If your workplace permits it, have packages delivered to your office, where they can be stored securely.
  • Smart Locks: Install smart locks that allow delivery personnel to access a secure storage area for packages (some people have this on their garages for packages to be left inside the garage doors out of sight).
  • Local Pickup Points: Check if your local stores, libraries, or community centers offer package pick-up services.
  • Neighbor Networks: Coordinate with your neighbors to create a shared delivery drop-off point or neighborhood package hub.
  • Same-Day Delivery Services: Opt for same-day or on-demand delivery services that reduce the time your package spends outside.

By implementing these tips and exploring alternative delivery methods, you can help keep your packages safe and reduce the risk of theft in the community.

Free Film Screening on Nov. 16 Delves into the Politics of Incarceration and Addiction


Free Film Screening 

Thursday, Nov. 16 at 7:30 pm 

Takoma Park Community Center 

7500 Maple Avenue 

In a divided America, progressive activist and political commentator Van Jones works across party lines on landmark criminal justice reform and a more humane response to the addiction crisis. Attempting to be a bridge builder in a time of extreme polarization takes Van and an unlikely coalition of allies deep into the inner workings of the divisive Trump administration, internal debates within both parties, and the lives of frontline activists fighting for their communities.

Facing fierce opposition from both political parties in a climate where bipartisanship has become a dirty word, Jones and his team enlist the support of formerly incarcerated individuals, faith leaders, grassroots activists and cultural figures in an attempt to pass legislation that would fix some broken aspects of the justice system and bring thousands of incarcerated people home early.

The award-winning documentary reveals an intimate portrait of an activist’s isolation and internal struggles and the commitment of people in both political parties who are drawn into a historic fight for freedom and justice. The film, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, has been shown at more than 40 other film festivals across the country.

Film director Brandon Kramer will lead a Q&A with the audience after the film screening.

This film screening is part of the Takoma Park Arts event series organized by the City of Takoma Park’s Arts and Humanities Division, which includes free film screenings, art exhibitions, concerts, theater, poetry readings, and dance performances. Please go to and sign up for our e-newsletter to get more info about all of our upcoming events.

Belle Ziegler Field to be Closed through March for Restoration


The City of Takoma Park will soon begin a project to restore the turf on Belle Ziegler field. The work will start the Week of October 16 and will likely continue through March.  The project is being undertaken by the City’s Vegetation Maintenance Division and will be assisted by NZI Construction.

The work will include aeration, field grading, addition of topsoil, and seeding. The field will be fenced off with temporary fencing and closed from mid-October through mid-March so the turf can recover.

If you have any questions, please contact the City’s Vegetation Maintenance Supervisor, Anna Mische John, at

Old School vs New School Basketball Game: Register by Friday, November 10


Prepare for an epic battle of Old School vs New School this Fall! The Teen Program will be hosting a basketball game with 10 adults against 10 teens to determine the ultimate Old School vs New School match up! Who will take the crown?! The winning team is awarded a trip to a Washington Wizards basketball game!

Teens (Grades 8-12) and adults wanted! If you would like to participate as a player and submit your team, please register on ActiveNet. PLAYERS MUST be registered by Friday, November 10th, no exceptions!

Piney Branch Elementary School
7510 Maple Ave

Friday, December 1

No registration is required to attend the event as a spectator. Come out and have fun with a DJ, food, a 3-point contest, and raffle prizes!


An Update on the Library and Community Center Renovation Project


After years of conversations and planning, the Takoma Park Maryland Library and Community Center renovation project has begun. Note that the Community Center back parking lot is now closed. City Planning anticipates welcoming the community to the new Library and Computer Center facilities in spring 2025.

In the meantime, the Library and Computer Center have relocated to ensure that access to our books, media, and computers will be available throughout this project. We will also continue to offer Books-to-Go curbside pickup at the new location and Books-to-You deliveries to Takoma Park residents.

During renovation, visit the temporary library facility at 7505 New Hampshire Ave. You can contact the library at or 301- 891-7259.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I go for updates?
Please sign up for the City’s Takoma Insider electronic newsletter or check the City’s website:

Will books and computers still be available?
Yes. Please visit, call, or email the Library and Computer Center. We are also still ordering new books. If you would like to search our catalog, visit

Where will Library programs be held?
Library programs will primarily be held at the interim location at 7505 New Hampshire Ave., but please call or visit our website to verify. Other departments may relocate programs and activities as necessary; please contact those departments for more information.

Will Recreation programs and facilities reservations be available?
A portion of Recreation programs have been temporarily moved to the Takoma Park Recreation Center (7315 New Hampshire Ave.), and we plan to keep a portion (including childcare) on-site at 7500 Maple Ave. during the renovation. Most rentals at the Takoma Park Community Center have been discontinued due to limited parking.
Please contact the Recreation Department at 301-891-7290 for availability.

Will the Takoma Park Police Department be impacted?
The Takoma Park Police Department will remain open throughout this process. It is open 24/7 for emergency services. If you have an emergency, please call 911 for the fastest response.

Will residents be able to access other Community Center services throughout construction?

Passports, Finance, Housing and Community Development, and other City offices will remain open and accessible to residents for the majority of construction. Occasionally, there may be brief periods of closures for utility work. Please consider calling or visiting the City’s website to ensure that the office you intend to visit is open or to make an appointment.

Will parking be impacted?
Parking at the Community Center will be limited. Please consider walking or taking public transportation to the Community Center when possible. See the below map.

Will the City be communicating with the schools?
Yes. We will be communicating regularly with nearby schools, and we will work with them to minimize the impact on dropping off and picking up students. More information will be available through the schools and on our website.

What changes can we expect to see in the near future?
When work begins, there are four trees that must be removed; we will attempt to repurpose these trees as furniture in the new building if the wood is found to be in suitable condition. Three trees are maple oaks, and one is a spruce. The plaque commemorating the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial tree will be preserved and reinstalled on the grounds once construction is completed. Once the trees have been removed, the Library building will be razed and rebuilt. Other work will be taking place inside the facilities.

What work has already been completed?
Several tasks have already been completed, including the removal and storage of solar panels, disconnection of gas and water utilities at the construction site, hazardous material abatement, and interior demolition. The mosaic from the front of the library has been carefully removed and stored to ensure its preservation until it can be reinstalled on the new building’s façade.

We are excited to offer you new and improved facilities when we reopen in 2025. Thank you for your patience while we are
in transition to serve you better.