Thursday, December 31, 2020

Montgomery Hills CVS Pharmacy to be renovated

A significant renovation is planned for the CVS Pharmacy store located at 9520 Georgia Avenue in the Seminary Place shopping center. The remodeling will be similar to that either completed or underway at many CVS stores across the country, combining already-planned changes with an expected influx of patients seeking vaccine injections in the coming years.

Already seen at one CVS in downtown Bethesda, one in Silver Spring and Gaithersburg and two in Rockville, the renovations will reorient the interior around a new Health Hub. CVS has for some years planned a transition from retail chain to health services provider, and this is the first real shift in that direction. The pharmacy area in the store will also be enlarged. Work will begin in the new year.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

XOA Lifestyle opens flagship store in downtown Silver Spring

XOA Lifestyle
is now open at 937 Ellsworth Drive in downtown Silver Spring. This is the local apparel chain's new flagship store. Specializing in upscale street fashion apparel and eyewear, brands on sale include DMV Deadstock, Mare, WhoIsPluto, PreyFour, Michelle & Co. and Timeless Sports. XOA takes over the space recently vacated by New York & Company.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Nando's Peri-Peri closes temporarily in Silver Spring

The downtown Silver Spring location of Nando's Peri-Peri at 924 Ellsworth Drive has unexpectedly closed temporarily. Nando's is not publicly stating the reason for the closure, and is directing patrons to other area Nando's locations. 

Monday, December 28, 2020

Iconic Woodside Deli building for sale in Silver Spring

The landmark Woodside Deli at 9329 Georgia Avenue in Montgomery Hills shocked the community when it abruptly closed last year. Now their iconic roadside building is available for sale. The asking price is $1,500,000, according to the online listing. 

A high-visibility property just south of the Capital Beltway, the building includes a full basement and twenty parking spaces. Bethesda-based AMR Commercial, LLC is listing the property.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Montgomery County judge won't end indoor dining ban

Parker Lewis can't lose. And neither can Montgomery County government in a Maryland courtroom, it can often seem. The recent decision by a judge in Anne Arundel County overturning that jurisdiction's ban on indoor and outdoor dining set up an excellent measuring stick for the Montgomery County decision that came last night in Montgomery County Circuit Court.

Judge James Bonifant declined to grant an injunction against Montgomery County's ban on indoor dining. Another hearing on the matter will be held after the Christmas holiday. Similar efforts to overturn bans were also rejected in Baltimore City and Prince George's County on Wednesday. 

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Armed robbery in Aspen Hill apartment complex

Montgomery County police responded to a report of an armed robbery in Aspen Hill Monday afternoon. The robbery was reported at an apartment building in the 3500 block of Pear Tree Court around 2:15 PM. Crime data indicates a knife was the weapon used in the robbery.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Armed robbery in White Oak

An armed robbery was reported in White Oak Saturday night. Montgomery County police responded to the incident in a commercial parking lot in the 12200 block of Tech Road around 9:55 PM that evening.

Monday, December 21, 2020

YouTube star Mr. Beast, rapper Tyga open ghost kitchens in Montgomery County, D.C.

Ghost kitchens are the hot trend in the pandemic-stricken hospitality industry these days. But it's not just neighborhood restaurant owners and local entrepreneurs testing the increasingly-hot waters; celebrities now want into the game. Two names familiar to many young people have now entered the market in Montgomery County and the District: top YouTuber Mr. Beast, and rapper Tyga.

Mr. Beast has just launched MrBeast Burger, a ghost kitchen burger "restaurant" you can order from via most popular food delivery apps (or the official MrBeast Burger app), at 122 Kentlands Boulevard and 1825 Connecticut Avenue N.W. in the District. Tyga is selling delivery-only Tyga Bites from...those same two addresses.

What's going on here? Both men are taking a Jeff Bezos approach to these ventures. Just as Bezos used existing Whole Foods grocery stores to further his delivery and logistics goals, MrBeast Burger and TygaBites are using Buca di Beppo restaurants across the country to launch these ghost kitchens. Your burgers, chicken and other menu items will be prepared by the chefs at those restaurants, and Mr. Beast and Tyga get a cut of the profits. Using this method, Mr. Beast was able to open 300 locations nationwide.

Despite the two geographically-disparate locations, apps appear to allow a surprisingly large number of Montgomery County residents to qualify for delivery from one or the other sites. Just open your favorite delivery app, and see if you can get a delivery. Bethesda seems to work from the D.C. location, Rockville from Kentlands, etc. Expect to see more of these gimmicks in the near future, as it appears to be a business model that any celebrity can plug into for Trump-like naming rights, while boosting sales for the Buca di Beppo chain.

How long before Tarnation Bob's Tarnation Burger pops up on delivery apps nationwide?

Friday, December 18, 2020

Utility work ahead on 16th Street in Silver Spring

Here's a traffic alert as we head into the Christmas week from the Maryland Transit Administration, related to the Purple Line. Starting on or about December 21, 2020, crews will perform underground and overhead utility relocations on 16th Street (MD 390) between Lyttonsville Road and Spring Street for about four weeks, weather permitting. Work may take place from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday. Temporary closures of the southbound right-hand lane will be necessary.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Maryland Gov. limits travel to essential purposes only, requires out-of-state travelers to quarantine or provide negative test

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) held a press conference late this afternoon, announcing several executive orders and coronavirus protocol directives. Hogan announced he is lowering the state's public gathering limit from 25 people to 10. The governor also issued an emergency order limiting travel to essential purposes only. Travelers from out-of-state (or Marylanders returning from out-of-state) must self-quarantine for 10 days, or provide a negative Covid-19 test, upon arriving in the state. 

Mandatory telework has been proscribed for all state employees who can. Hogan said that starting December 21, front-facing government offices will be temporarily suspending all in-person interactions with the public for two weeks.

Echoing New Zealand's exemption for the Easter Bunny earlier this year, Hogan exempted Santa Claus, elves, and reindeer from travel restrictions. He said Dr. Anthony Fauci told him in a Zoom conference earlier today that Santa Claus has immunity to Covid-19.

Hogan said the state will provide $30 million in assistance for restaurants, and $15 million more for entertainment venues, hurt by the pandemic. He also announced $40 million being added to the Temporary Assistance Program, and $40 million to care providers for the developmentally disabled.

The governor asked residents to do their part to reduce the spread of the virus, and to look forward to "a better, healthier and happier 2021."

Martin Luther King, Jr. Swim Center reopens in White Oak

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Swim Center at 1201 Jackson Road has reopened after extensive repairs and renovations. Montgomery County's Recreation Department, which operates and maintains the facility, says it had not received any revitalization or mechanical improvements in over 35 years before this. 

Outside lighting, driveways and parking areas have all been improved. Other cosmetic changes include new signage, doors, flooring, carpeting and paint. The roof has been replaced, and bathrooms and other parts of the facility have received ADA updates. A new bike rack has been installed, as well.

The pool is open to Montgomery County residents and pool pass holders only. Reservations are strongly encouraged, as patrons with reservations will have priority admission. Call 240-777-8060 for reservations or with other questions you may have.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Aggravated assault at Wheaton night club

Montgomery County police responded to a report of an aggravated assault at a night club in Wheaton Monday night. Officers were called to the scene at a club in the 2500 block of Ennalls Avenue around 8:11 PM.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Patient First coming to Aspen Hill

Patient First 
is coming to Aspen Hill. The urgent care chain has leased space at 13671 Georgia Avenue, at the Aspen Manor shopping center. There was previously an urgent care clinic at this location, Xpress MedCare.

Monday, December 14, 2020

Wheaton Town Plaza decorated for holidays

The new Marian Fryer Town Plaza near the Wheaton Metro station has been decorated for the holiday season. Taking the stage at the plaza are reindeer, a snowflake, giant Christmas tree ornaments, and a well-lighted Christmas tree.

Photo via Montgomery County Government

Friday, December 11, 2020

Assault at Aspen Hill gas station

Montgomery County police were called to investigate an aggravated assault reported at an Aspen Hill gas station Wednesday morning. The assault was reported at a gas station in the 14000 block of Georgia Avenue around 11:46 AM, according to crime data.

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Weekend work on Colesville Road in downtown Silver Spring

Be prepared for temporary lane closures this weekend on Colesville Road between Draper Lane and Georgia Avenue in downtown Silver Spring. Purple Line contractors will be striping the pavement along that stretch of Colesville from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM this coming Saturday, December 12 and Sunday, December 13. The Maryland Transit Administration says access will be maintained to homes and businesses during the work.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Pickpocket strikes in downtown Silver Spring

Montgomery County police responded to a report of a pickpocket at a store in downtown Silver Spring on Monday afternoon. At least one pocket was picked at a "department/discount" store in the 900 block of Thayer Avenue around 4:27 PM, according to crime data.

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Spice Street sets opening date in downtown Silver Spring

Spice Street Innovative Indian Cuisine
is finally ready to open at the Solaire 8250 Georgia Avenue apartment building. The restaurant will officially open tomorrow, Wednesday, December 9, 2020. Their street address is 8242 Georgia Avenue. Save $10 off your first order tomorrow using the code save10 when you order $50 or more worth of food online - you can also check out the menu there ahead of tomorrow's opening.

Monday, December 7, 2020

Takoma Park Lidl opening December 9

The new Lidl grocery store in Takoma Park will celebrate its grand opening this Wednesday, December 9, 2020. It is located at 6881 New Hampshire Avenue. A ribbon-cutting will take place at 7:15 AM, and the doors will officially open at 8:00 AM. 

The first 100 customers through the doors will receive random Lidl gift cards valued between $5 and $100. There will also be giveaways for a $500 gift card, and a tote bag (app only). A DJ will provide music for the event. Store hours will initially be 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM daily.

Friday, December 4, 2020

Tropical Smoothie Cafe coming to Aspen Hill

Tropical Smoothie Cafe
is opening an Aspen Hill location soon. It will take over the My Eye Dr. space at 13531 Connecticut Avenue, in the Aspen Hill Shopping Center. The chain is known for its popular sandwiches and wraps as much as its beverages. Nice addition to the neighborhood!

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Carjacking in downtown Silver Spring

Montgomery County police responded to a report of a strong-arm carjacking in downtown Silver Spring on Tuesday afternoon, December 1, 2020. The incident took place in an alley off Fenton Street around 3:56 PM, according to crime data.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Indecent exposure in downtown Silver Spring

Montgomery County police responded to a report of indecent exposure in downtown Silver Spring on Sunday afternoon. The incident was reported at a bus stop in the 8400 block of Colesville Road around 5:50 PM. According to crime data, the victim was an adult.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Car stolen at Leisure World

Montgomery County police responded to a report of a stolen vehicle at Leisure World on Monday morning. The car was taken from a driveway in the 3700 block of Finsbury Drive. It is believed the vehicle was stolen sometime between 10:00 PM Sunday night and 8:30 AM Monday morning.