In and Around Morningside-Skyline 
By Mary McHale 301-735-3451

Victorian Christmas at the Dr. Mudd House

The Dr. Samuel A. Mudd House Museum invites you to their 17th Annual Victorian Christmas Celebration.

Outside the House, visitors will find Civil War soldiers interpreting an earlier time, in the 1800s.  Inside, Victorian splendor!  Tour with costumed docents (by candlelight in the evening), meet Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus, view a superb collection of antique dolls and enjoy refreshments and Christmas music.

The House is at 3725 Dr. Samuel Mudd Road, off Poplar Hill Road, in Waldorf.

Dates & times:  Friday, Nov. 30, 4–8 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 1 & 2, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. both days.  Admission: $8, adults; children under 16, $3.   For more information, call 301-274-9358 or go to



The volunteers at the Morningside Fire Department had a great Thanksgiving dinner, thanks to some Skyline Citizens Association members and others in the neighborhood.?

Thank you to Jonathan Hutto, of Skyline, for tearing down lots of signs from poles.  They’re all illegal!


19th Annual Gingerbread House

For a sweet treat, come to Darnall’s Chance and view an amazing display of edible gingerbread houses.  (No nibbling allowed!)  Visitors have the opportunity to vote in the Viewer’s Choice Competition.  Fri. Nov. 30; Fri.–Sun., Dec. 1–2 and 7–9.  Noon to 5 p.m. each day. 

Fee: $1.  Historic Darnall’s Chance is in Upper Marlboro, on a hill overlooking Schoolhouse Pond.  For information: 301-952-8010.


Festival of Lights

Enjoy this spectacular drive-through event featuring dazzling displays with more than 2.5 million lights throughout the park! You won’t want to miss the giant, 54-foot LED musical tree! And be sure to get your Festival Spectacles at the gate.  A surprise for your eyes!  Watch as the lenses magically transform every point of light in our holiday displays into magical floating holographic images!

The Festival runs through Jan. 1 at Watkins Regional Park, 5 to 9:30 p.m.   Free on Christmas.  Admission is $10 per car or van; multi-visit pass (3 times), $20; mini-bus or limo, $20; bus, $30. Festival Spectacles, $1.  Bring canned goods for local food banks.


Breakfast with Santa in Morningside

Have breakfast with Santa at the Morningside Fire Department on Saturday, Dec. 15, 9 a.m.  Fee: to be announced.  Call the Town Hall at 301-736-2300.


Healthy eating

The Oxon Hill Food Pantry has been awarded a grant from the Anthem Foundation for its free program, “Encouraging Healthy Eating,” to provide participants with low fat/calorie food items, recipe ideas and a nutrition class.  The class is taught by an Amerigroup representative

The program will be held Dec. 4, 10–11 a.m. and Dec. 13, 6–7 p.m., at 4915 St. Barnabas Rd., Temple Hills, site of the Pantry.  Free, and open to the public.  Info: Kathy Gabrielsen, 301-326-3263.


Changing landscape

The Belnor Senior Residence, a 122-unit new construction, affordable senior apartment complex, is open.  It’s at 3800 St. Barnabas Road with excellent accessibility to Marlow Heights and transit, while backing up to a wooded area, walking path, and stream.  Green design features include Energy Star appliances, efficient individual HVAC units, and low VOC materials for improved indoor air quality.  Amenities include a two-story clubroom, library, fitness center, putting green, community garden, and green house.


Help wanted at the VFD

Morningside Volunteer Fire Dept. seeks administrative members.  From their web page: “Seeking admin volunteers of any age, any education level, any experience, any background.  Here are some examples: community engagement, mentoring young members, recruitment, program management, data entry, data evaluation, supply requisition and monitoring.”  Info:  go to



This is the last month to buy Forever Stamps for 50¢!  In January, the first-ounce Forever goes to 55¢, a 10% increase. The additional-ounce Forever Stamp falls from 21¢ to 15¢.


Kevin Austin, of the Capitol Police

Kevin Wayne Austin, 54, who retired in 2012 as a sergeant in the United States Capitol Police, died of a massive heart attack on Nov. 5.   He was born in Australia, son of Ralph and Margaret Austin.

He grew up in Prince George’s and once lived on Lori Street in Skyline.  He earned a degree in Criminal Justice from the U. of Maryland and served 25 years with the Capitol Police.

He composed music, wrote poetry, loved motorcycling, hiking and fishing.

Survivors include his son Conner Austin, his parents, sister Sandra Caruso and brother Edwin Austin.  A celebration of his life was at the Upper Marlboro First Baptist Church.


Joyce Cowan, Principal at Glassmanor

Joyce A. Cowan, 90, a retired Prince George’s schoolteacher and principal, died Sept. 20 at a hospice in Greenbelt.  She lived in Suitland, taught 16 years at North Brentwood Elementary and was principal at Glassmanor Elementary in Oxon Hill for 10 years. 



Happy birthday to Mary Doyle, Susan McKay and Jon Foster, Dec. 1; John Anthony, Jr., Vonn Branch and Tyonda Simms-Taylor, Dec. 2; Louise Lantz, Mary Straud and Sen. Mike Miller, Dec. 3; Mark Witherow Jr. and  La’Keshia Johnson, Dec. 4; Denise (Eskew) Simms, Dec. 5; Virginia Rosch, Dec. 6; Sandra Mickey and Brian Doyle, Dec. 7.


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By Audrey Johnson 301-922-5384


South County Economic Development Association, Inc. and South County Institute for Economic Development, Inc. presents its 15th Annual Awards Christmas Gala.  “Celebrating a brighter future now!” This will be an evening of networking and enjoyment Sunday, December 9, 2018 from 6:30–10:30 p.m. at Harborside Hotel, 6400 Oxon Hill Road, Oxon Hill, Maryland 20745.  Telephone number is 301-749-9400.  Cost is $75.00 per person.

For more information and to purchase tickets, sponsorships, and ads:  call 301-538-4419 or visit or

“SCIED, a 501(c)(6) organization was established in 1996, works to build a wholesome community in which the entrepreneurial spirit will flourish and soar.  They support business development and retention, summer employment, academic excellent in our schools, safe streets, as well as adequate transportation infrastructure and facilities.”

“SCIED, their 501(c)3 charitable arm, was established in 2001 to assist economically disadvantaged groups, particularly seniors, women, youth and veterans to raise educational and skill levels in order to enhance their employability and entrepreneurial opportunities.”

Keynote speaker at the Gala will be Ms. Melonie Johnson.  She is President and Chief Operating Officer, of MGM National Harbor, Prince George’s County, Maryland.  Ms. Johnson has a wealth of outstanding leadership and experience in the gaming industry, along with her financial expertise and strategic thinking.



You are invited to attend Christmas at Grace Production the Prodigal-Home for Christmas Saturday, December 15, 2018, 2 p.m. and 5 p.m.  Guest Artists are Michele Cober and Alicia Williams.  Admission is free.  Music, Arts and Worship Ministry.  Rev. Robert Slade, Pastor.  The address is Grace United Methodist Church 11700 Old Fort Road, Fort Washington, Maryland 20744.  Telephone number is 301-292-7828.



Christ United Methodist Church is sponsoring a Civil Rights History Tour Alabama August 9, 2019 (5 days–4 nights), $650 per person double occupancy and $850 per person single occupancy. Package includes 4 nights lodging, 4 breakfasts, 3 dinners.  Birmingham:  Civil Rights Institute & Museum, 16th Street Baptist Church, & Kelly Ingram Park, Selma: National Voting Rights Museum, Brown’s Chapel & Edmund Pettus Bridge, Lowndes County Interpretive Center, Montgomery:  Home of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, Rosa Parks Museum and Civil Rights Memorial Center, Tuskegee Airman National Historic Site, Souvenir gift, Luggage handling, taxes and meal gratuities, motor coach transportation.

Payment Plan based on double occupancy:  $100 due now to reserve your seat.  $110 due the 15th of January, February, March, April and May 2019.  Final payment due by May 21, 2019.  All payments are non-refundable.  Please make check payable to Christ U.M. Church.  Send payments to Christ U.M. Church, c/o Outreach Ministry, 22919 Christ Church Road, Aquasco, Maryland 20608.  Cancellation insurance available upon request.  Bus departs at 7 a.m. from Christ U.M. Church on Monday, August 5, 2019.

For information and reservations contact:  Grace Bryant 301-449-3424, Rudell Jones, 301-579-2014, or Phyllis Slater 301-653-7345.



Linda Lee received a plaque for her outstanding and dedicated service on Outreach Sunday, October 14, 2018 at Christ United Methodist Church, Aquasco, Maryland.  Congratulations Linda.



Nottingham Myers will celebrate their Usher’s Prayer Breakfast on December 8, 2018 at 8:30 a.m. in the Family Life Center.  Guest Speaker is Mrs. Rhoda Slade.  Address is 15601 Brooks Church Road, Upper Marlboro, Maryland 20772. 

Nottingham Myers will celebrate their Usher’s Anniversary on December 9, 2018 at 11 a.m. Speaker:  Rev. Rebecca Iannicelli District Superintendent, WE District.  Pastor, Reverend Constance C. Smith.  Church telephone number 301-888-2171.



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