Wednesday, July 25, 2007

See the stars under the stars

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Charles E.Shoemaker⁄The Gazette
Tomika Boone, a dancer with Sankofa Dance Theatre of Savannah, Ga., performs Friday afternoon at the National Center for Children and Families in Bethesda.
Bethesda movie lovers rejoice! August brings with it two outdoor movie series right in your backyard.

Beginning on Tuesday, ‘‘Bethesda Outdoor Movies: Stars on the Avenue” kicks off five evenings of blockbuster pictures shown at the corner of Norfolk and Auburn avenues in downtown Bethesda for free.

‘‘Funny Face” starts the series on Tuesday, with ‘‘Good Night and Good Luck” on Aug. 1, ‘‘Charlotte’s Web” on Aug. 2, ‘‘To Catch a Thief” on Aug. 3 and ‘‘Jaws” on Aug. 4.

Movies start at 9 p.m. and attendees are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs.

Stars on the Avenue is sponsored by the Bethesda Urban Partnership and more information is available by calling 301-215-6660 or visit

But that’s just the beginning.

The following week, the Comcast Outdoor Film Festival brings 10 nights of movies to the lawn of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and Strathmore.

The series begins with ‘‘Night at the Museum” on Aug. 10, ‘‘Casino Royale” on Aug. 11, ‘‘Over the Hedge” on Aug. 12, ‘‘Wizard of Oz” on Aug. 13, ‘‘North by Northwest” on Aug. 14, ‘‘The Devil Wears Prada” on Aug. 15, ‘‘Resurrecting the Champ” on Aug. 16, ‘‘Dream Girls” on Aug. 17, ‘‘DaVinci Code” on Aug. 18 and ‘‘Happy Feet” on Aug. 19.

Grounds open at 6:30 p.m. and movies start at dusk. Moviegoers are encouraged to bring blankets or low beach chairs. The movies are free, but snacks will be on sale and proceeds benefit NIH Children’s Charities.

For more information, call 301-816-6985 or visit

Dirty dogs get cleanfor a cause

Dogtopia, a North Bethesda dog daycare and spa, hosts its third annual charity dog wash to benefit military dogs in Iraq from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the facility, 4920 Wyaconda Road.

There are nearly 1,500 military dogs in active service and more than 100 K-9 teams deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to a Dogtopia release.

For a $10 donation, get your dog a bath and enjoy food and games for pets and people. Proceeds will go toward care packages for handlers and their dogs.

For more information, visit

Student receivesHero Award

Joshua Stanton of Bethesda last month received the Outstanding Student Award at the Charles E. Smith Life Communities Volunteer Day Program for his role in creating and implementing the Ethical Wills Project at the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington in Rockville.

A student at Amherst College, Stanton worked with Hebrew Home Volunteer Director Hedy Peyser to help residents of the Rockville senior home prepare ethical wills, or ‘‘love letters” to friends and relatives in which the author sets forth advice, reflections, values and wisdom gleaned over a lifetime.

Stanton assisted in developing a 22-item questionnaire, trained high school and college students to interview Hebrew Home residents, and devoted hours to organizing and supervising to get the enterprise up and running. In addition, Stanton trained volunteers to interview patients at the Jewish Social Services Agency Hospice.

Stanton, the son of Tom Stanton and Martha Zaslow graduated from Walt Whitman High School. The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington recognized his work on the Ethical Will Project with its Hero Award, reserved for notable volunteers in the Jewish community.


Dr. Kevin Raymond Smith graduated in May from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine with a degree in medicine. He graduated as a member of Alpha Omega Alpha, a national medical honors society. He will start his residency in internal medicine-pediatrics at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

His wife, Melinda Abernethy-Smith of Salisbury, N.C., also graduated with degrees in medicine and public health and will join him at the University of Michigan for her residency in obstetrics and gynecology.

A 1996 graduate of Walt Whitman High School, Smith is the son of Raymond and Jeanne Smith of Bethesda.

On campus

*Jody Fox earned a Gold A Award at Culver Military Academies in Culver, Ind. Attained with a GPA of 3.7 or better, the award is the highest academic honor available during combined grading terms.

Fox, who plays soccer and lacrosse, is the son of Tracy and Don Fox of Bethesda.

*Elizabeth Hood was named to the dean’s list at Smith College for her academic achievement for the 2006-07 school year. The dean’s list recognizes students with a GPA of 3.333 or above.She received her bachelor’s degree in anthropology and film studies in May.

A 2003 Walter Johnson High School graduate, she is the daughter of Peg and Michael Hood of North Bethesda.

*Bethesda resident Nicolas Bax, a rising senior at St. Albans School in Washington, D.C., was the only college-bound student in the District and Maryland, and one of 85 nationwide, to achieve a perfect score on the April national test administration of the ACT. About 200 students from the District, 2,500 students from Maryland, and 446,000 students across the nation, completed the ACT college-entrance exam.

Bax is a three-time U.S. national junior cycling champion, a member of the junior national teams in cycling (2007) and duathlon (2006) at the world championships last summer, a Washington Post All-Met First Team in Cross Country.

This column is for you. Share your good news! Feel free to send press releases and news tips. Contact Stephanie Siegel via e-mail at, phone at 301-280-3006, fax at 301-670-7183, or snail mail at 1200 Quince Orchard Blvd., Gaithersburg, MD 20878.