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Olney Days to focus spotlight on community spirit -

by Terri Hogan
Senior Staff Writer
Olney Days will celebrate community spirit May 20 and 21 with events aimed at strengthening relationships and benefiting the people who call Olney home.
The weekend will offer family-friendly activities, coordinated by a committee led by Helene Rosenheim, who has been the driving force behind Olney Days for nearly three decades.
“We live in an age of technology and social media, and people tend to be more isolated,” Rosenheim said. “These activities bring our community together to have fun and hopefully enjoy good weather, foster a strong sense of community and create fond memories for our kids.”
This year’s celebration will kick off with a new event — a free showing of “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” at Olney Boys and Girls Club Community Park on Friday evening.
Another new event will be the Olney Town Commons Community Planning Forum at Olney Library on Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (See details, page 14.)
Saturday evening’s concert, contests and activities at Olney Manor Park will conclude with a fireworks show, beginning at dusk.
Bob McHale, the Greater Olney Civic Association’s Citizen of the Year, is the grand marshal of Sunday’s Olney Days Parade.
The parade will feature several new entries, including the Col. Zadok Magruder High School JROTC Battalion and Color Guard, the Almas Shriners with clown carts and other vehicles, and Montgomery Parks Mounted Patrol.
The Rock the Lot Block Party on Sunday afternoon will feature music by Tubefreeks, The Tolerators, Company Junkyard, Dear Luna and The Feminist Majority, along with food trucks, games and activities, and the Beer and Wine Garden, serving beverages from The Olney Winery, Waredaca Brewing Company, Denizen’s Brewing Company and The Greene Turtle.
“We are really hoping for good weather because this event really brings out the crowds,” said Jim Smith, chair of the Olney Civic Fund. “We’d like to see this continue to grow to add multiple stages, akin to Hometown Holidays in Rockville.”
The Olney Days weekend of events costs about $25,000, funded by business sponsors through the Olney Civic Fund. The costs continue to grow each year; many expenses that were initially in-kind donations now have significant costs associated with them, organizers said.
Perennial sponsors include Fletcher’s Service Center and Graeves Auto and Tire at the Platinum level and The Backyard Naturalist at the Silver level.
“As family owned businesses, they know the value of a strong community,” said Barbara Falcigno, board member of the Olney Civic Fund.
Other contributing businesses include Rocketeria, which organizes and hosts Rock the Lot; Shoppers Food & Pharmacy, which sponsors the Rock the Lot stage; and Giant Food, which sponsors the shred truck.
Gold sponsors include McFall & Berry Landscape Management, Natelli Communities, Olney Assisted Living and Memory Care, Embrace Home Loans and Norbeck Country Club.

For more information

Businesses and individuals can donate to Olney Days through the Olney Civic Fund’s website at www.olneycivicfund.org.
Visit the website for complete details on all Olney Days activities, as well as information on weather cancellations.

Schedule for Olney Days
Friday, May 19

Movie Night at Freeman Fields, park opens at 6 p.m., movie begins at 8 p.m. — Hosted by Olney Boys and Girls Community Sports Association (OBGC), 4501 Olney-Laytonsville Road. Refreshments available for purchase.

Saturday, May 20

Joe’s Ride and Stride Remembering Olney’s Kids, 7-10 a.m. – Will benefit Joseph Patrick Sanford Foundation. Starts/ends at Oakdale Church, 3425 Emory Church Road, and includes 45K, 30K,10K bike rides, 5K walk and children’s bike rodeo. Register at Fletcher’s Service Center or www.JoeSanford.com.

Town Commons Community Planning Forum, 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. — Held at Olney Library. Go to www.OlneyTownCenter.org.

Free Paper Shred, 12-3 p.m. — Behind Sandy Spring Bank building, 17801 Georgia Ave. Limit of three boxes or three large bags or equivalent. Sponsored by Giant Food.

Fifth annual Olney’s Idol Contest — Event has been canceled.

Olney Days Fun Fair and Fireworks, 4 p.m. to dark — Features food-eating contests, sporting contests, carnival games and firetruck rides. Refreshments for sale by Sandy Spring Fire Department Auxiliary, free cupcakes from Shoppers Food and Pharmacy. The Olney Big Band will perform, followed by fireworks at dusk. Held at Olney Manor Park, 16601 Georgia Ave.

Sunday, May 21

22nd Annual Olney Days Car and Truck Show, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. — Sponsored by Fletcher’s Service Center, 18001 Georgia Ave. Call 301 924-4500 or go to www.fletchers4u.com.

Pre-parade Concert, 1:30 p.m. — Olney Concert Band will perform on Spartan Road, east of Georgia Avenue, near the parade reviewing stand.

34th Olney Days Parade, 2 p.m. — Starts at Prince Phillip Drive and moves north on Georgia Avenue to Spartan Road.

Rock the Lot Block Party, 3:30 to 8 p.m. — Food trucks, games and live music performed by rock bands at Rocketeria, 18120 Hillcrest Ave. Money raised benefits Project Change, nonprofit dedicated to promoting positive youth development. Sound and event sponsored by Rocketeria, stage sponsored by Shoppers Food and Pharmacy. Rain or shine.

Beer and Wine Garden, 3:30 to 8 p.m. — Held in conjunction with Rock the Lot on Hillcrest Avenue. Must be age 21 and over, ID required. Rain or

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