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Month: October 2021 Page 1 of 3

The Top 5 Internet Scams and How to Avoid Them

1. Grandparent Scam – The caller pretends to be a grandchild who has been arrested and needs bail money. Hang Up! It’s a scam.
• If you are concerned, call your family member.
2. Publisher’s Clearinghouse Scam – You’ve won millions, but have to pay taxes first. Hang Up! It’s a scam.
• Publisher Clearinghouse will NEVER notify a winner over the phone or tell them to make a payment to receive their prize.
3. Arrest Warrant Scam – If you receive a text or voice mail requesting you to call your local Police Department or Sheriff’s Department because you have a warrant out for your arrest for missing jury duty. Hang Up! It’s a scam.
• The Police and Sheriff will NOT solicit money to resolve an arrest warrant.
• If you are concerned that you may have a warrant for your arrest, call the Prince George’s County Sheriff’s Office at 301-780-8600.
4. Romance Scam – Scammer makes contact on dating sites, social media or email. They gain a rapport, then eventually have an emergency and need money.
• NEVER send money to someone you’ve only communicated with online or over the phone.
Read blogs at for relationship advice. And for tips on how to get your ex back fast, visit
5. You Owe Taxes Scam – Caller identifies themselves as an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Agent, tells you that you owe back taxes and to pay immediately!
• The IRS states they do NOT “initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text message or social media to request personal or financial information.”
• The IRS will NOT direct you to mail cash, wire money or purchase gift cards for payment.
If you become a victim of a financial scam, report it to Police at (301) 352-1200
(Source: PGPD Financial crimes unit) 

Bagel Place Closes its Doors after Serving 35 Years

After operating for 35 years, one of College Park’s favorite businesses closed its doors yesterday. It looks like the landlord wants a longer-term lease, but Bagel Place wants a shorter one so that they may retire early.

A sign on Bagel Place says “Thank you for your support over 35 years”

The City tried to help find a solution, and even tried to look for a place but sadly things didn’t work.

In a letter to the community (please see below), the owners of Bagel Place are asking the community members to call the property owner [Curtis Property at Management 301-702-3200] and ask to keep them in business. Bagel Place owners said they have one month before the current lease expires.

The community members have also started an online petition asking Curtis Property to reconsider its decision.


Hollywood Shopping Center Gets Some Help with Improved Lighting

Recently, the Hollywood Shopping Center added 22 energy-efficient LED lights and 4 Floodlights encompassing the entire perimeter of the Center.

Located at 9805 Rhode Island Avenue, the shopping center has My Organic Market (MoM’s) as its anchor tenant, Proteus Bike and Brews, Pizza Roma and a few other stores. The shopping center is owned by Carrollton Properties, LLP and Hollywood Shopping Center, LLC

On October 25, 2021, the Hollywood  Shopping Center was awarded a grant in the amount of $9,029.83 for an exterior lighting project. The Shopping Center also received an Energy Saving rebate from Pepco in the amount of $2180.

The City started the Business and Façade Improvements Grants program several years ago. The grant is used by College Park businesses to make exterior improvements for signage and lighting. During the covid-19 pandemic, the city amended the funding guidelines to match the full amount of the improvements to 100%.

Currently, there is robust demand for applications throughout all areas of College Park. Funding for the program is provided by the State of Maryland grants program.

The City is considering additional funding through its COVID-related American Recovery Plan (ARPA) allocation.

UMD Backs Away from Developing Guilford Woods Site – For Now

Today the University of Maryland President Dr. Pines announced to “pause” the proposed development of the Western Gateway graduate housing project.

The proposed Western Gateway development would have happened at the sites of the Guilford Woods and the Guilford Run site, spanning over 9 acres of wooded land. The community in College Park and the surrounding areas have expressed deep concerns about the loss of hundreds of trees and the stormwater issues in the surrounding neighborhoods.

More about the community’s concerns can be found here.

The community has opposed the development of the Guilford Woods site (Photo credit: the Hyattsville Wire)

Instead, Dr. Pines announced to redevelop Old Leonardtown into a new mixed-income residential community prioritizing graduate student housing.

This request, issued by the Terrapin Development Company, would seek interest in developing quality housing at accessible price points, tailored to the UMD graduate student community, the announcement reads.


Indoor Mask Mandate Extended Until December 9

This Tuesday, Prince George’s County extended the indoor mask mandate until December 9, 2021, or until the County Executive decides to lift the mandate.

The Council Resolution 122-2021 gave the following COVID-19 data through October 12, 2021

  • positive cases in the County: 98,216,
  • approximately 9728 hospitalizations
  • approximately 1646 deaths.
  • infection rate is 3.1%
  • the average daily case rate is 10.7 per 100,000 residents
  • available hospital capacity is 50.1%, with 8% of hospital beds in use for patients with COVID-19
  • 82.7% of adult county residents ages 18 and over received at least one vaccination, and 73.1% are fully vaccinated

The new indoor mask mandate went into effect as of October 25, 2021, at 5:01 pm.

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Vote Using a Mail-in Ballot at November 7 City Election

Step 1: Vote on the “Official Ballot” paper. The instructions on how to vote can be found on the ballot paper.

Step 2: Insert the Official ballot in the “BALLOT / OATH ENVELOPE”

Step 3: Seal the ballot/oath envelope, and sign on the back of the envelope

Step 4: Insert the Oath envelope inside the Postage Paid Return Envelope and seal

Please make sure the barcode on the ballot/oath envelope shows throw the window of the back of the return envelope.

Step 5: Mail the return envelope at the local post office or at one of the City’s official ballot dropbox. There is one drop box at Davis Hall – 9217 – 51st Avenue.


School Boundary Changes – Attend a Community Conversation

As you may know, Prince George’s County Public Schools has been engaged in a Comprehensive School Boundary Initiative for the past year. Many PGCPS school boundaries will be changing in the next 2-3 years

Earlier this year, PGCPS released the Draft Boundary Scenarios Report which presents three draft scenarios that offer different approaches to adjusting school boundaries in PGCPS. You can access the report at

In order to get input on the final recommendations, five Community Conversations have been scheduled, two of them will be conducted in Spanish:

Tuesday, November 2 at 6:30-8:00 PM (English)
Wednesday, November 3 at 6:30-8:30 PM (Spanish)
Tuesday, November 9 at 6:30-8:00 PM (English)
Wednesday, November 10 at 6:30-8:00 PM (Spanish)
Saturday, November 13 at 10:30 AM to Noon (English with Spanish interpretation)

These virtual meetings will share information on the various boundary change scenarios and provide an opportunity to ask questions and give feedback. It is very important for our District 3 communities to be involved in these discussions. important that all communities in Prince George’s County be involved!

Register online

[Source: Office of Councilmember Glaros]

New Sunnyside Playground May Be Ready by Next Spring

The Odessa Playground will include a combo swing for adults and children to swing together facing each other [Photo credit:]

Sunnyside residents have asked for a play area with play area markings for children in their neighborhood so that the families don’t have to cross Rhode Island Avenue to reach the closest playground to them. A parcel of land at the east end of Odessa road was donated to the City in 1999 with the intent the space be used for recreational purposes.

A community meeting was convened to obtain input for the project. Greenman–Pedersen, Inc., was awarded a contract to design and engineer the new playground. The City issued an RFP to advertise for the construction of the new playground project. After reviewing the bids, the Staff is recommending awarding the construction contract to E & R Services Inc. of Lanham, Maryland in the amount of $265,142.

Components of the new playground include an access path and playground pieces for people of various ages. They include:
(a) an ADA compliant asphalt access path from the end of Odessa Road to the playground,
(b) a combo swing for adults and children to swing together facing each other,
(c) a modern-themed climbing structure,
(d) three separate height turning bars, and
(e) a nature-inspired rock log, all installed on a long-wearing rubberized surface.

Other amenities include 2 benches, litter receptacles, a stormwater management micro-Bioretention facility and a structure with plantings and a screen planting using native plants. The Council will consider approving the playground construction at tomorrow’s meeting.

Some of the play equipment will be manufactured by PlayWorld’s Unity Connect Collection line of products.

The City Council is expected to award the contract at tomorrow’s Council meeting. Once the project team gets the approval, the plan is to schedule with the contractor an agreeable timeline to start and issue a Notice to Proceed soon after the discussion. Staff estimates the contract time take until spring/ summer time frame to complete, weather permitting.

Some Changes May Be Coming to Cherry Hill Rd Near Route 1

The Prince George’s County Department of Public Works and Transportation is proposing some changes to Cherry Hill Rd close to Route 1.

The County held a virtual community meeting on Monday, July 19, 2021, regarding a proposed median option along Cherry Hill Road at the Shopping Center.

Cherry Hill Road near Baltimore Avenue (Google Inc.)

The County installed temporary large yellow flex posts to address issues related to (a)  Left turning traffic from eastbound Cherry Hill into the eastern-most College Park Market Place shopping center entrance. (b) Left turning traffic from the eastern-most College Park Market Place shopping center entrance onto eastbound Cherry Hill Road.

However, the flex posts were damaged beyond repair and were removed when SHA resurfaced the Cherry Hill Road leg of the intersection with Baltimore Avenue when the new crosswalk was installed at the intersection.

The County’s new proposal asks to install a grass median with a full-height curb where the flex posts used to stand before. At next Tuesday’s meeting, County Staff will present the median option at the October 26 City Council meeting and is requesting the City’s support.

The new proposal will also address traffic turning into and out of Autoville Drive from Cherry Hill Road.

One important topic of discussion at next Tuesday’s meeting will be about the traffic backed up on westbound Cherry Hill Road leading into the Starbucks in the College Park Market Place Shopping Center. Starbucks has been reached before to address the traffic backup issues. Starbucks is said to be exploring changes to its store that should significantly reduce and hopefully eliminate any traffic congestion in Cherry Hill due to its customers. It looks like these plans have been submitted yet to the County.



Good Neighbor Day, Saturday, November 13


Good Neighbor Day is a collaborative partnership between the University of Maryland, the City of College Park, and The Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC). The event brings together the College Park community to beautify shared spaces, educate and engage in sustainable practices, and take pride in Greater College Park. You can register for a project or a workshop here.

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