Of the many summer community activities dedicated to celebrating Greenbelt’s 80th anniversary, the Grand Reopening of the Greenbelt Museum Historic House on Sunday, June 4 will certainly be one of the most authentic and community-driven events of the season. The free, family-friendly event kicks off at 11 a.m. with the 4th annual Roosevelt Ride: a short, vintage-themed bike ride that begins and ends at the Historic House at 10-B Crescent Road. Spinning off the well-known “tweed ride” theme, community members are encouraged to arrive in 1930s-1950s period garb, such as a classic suit or Rosie the Riveter ensemble, to celebrate the rich history of Greenbelt. Additionally, fun vintage accessories will be provided before the event for bicycle decoration, though riders should feel free to decorate their bikes before arriving. Vintage clothing is optional, but participants should make sure to bring a helmet. Rain or shine, community members are invited to join Greenbelt City Council members at 1 p.m. for the ceremonial ribbon cutting, and will be among the first to see the restored historic house since its closure for water damage repairs in October 2016. Following the ribbon cutting, all house tours will be free until the residence closes at 5 p.m. On the house tour, visitors will be able to observe restored furnishings and household objects that reflect the lifestyle of an average American family during the Great Depression and World War II. Interactive areas allow children to touch and play with time-period household objects, while providing visitors with the opportunity to kinesthetically experience the lives of the families who used to reside in the Greenbelt community. Since the reconstruction commenced last October, a few dramatic changes have been made, such as the walls of the historic home which have been carefully repainted in colors appropriate to the time period. The event, which is sponsored by Friends of the Greenbelt Museum, will be providing light refreshments, and families are encouraged to bring picnic lunches or browse the Farmers Market so they can eat on the beautiful lawns outside the house. Free craft activities will honor the artist, Lenore Thomas Straus, who sculpted many well-known historic pieces seen around Greenbelt, and children can play safely on the playground. Dogs can even join in on the fun, as long as they remain on a leash. Those who can’t make it on June 4, can visit the Historic House on Sundays between 1 to 5 p.m., or can schedule a visit or walking tour during the week. General admission $3, children under 12 free, FOGM members free. The Greenbelt Museum greatly appreciates volunteers, and any individuals who are passionate about the unique history of the Greenbelt community are encouraged to contact the Museum. For more information regarding the event or volunteer opportunities, visit greenbeltmuseum.org.
Clodagh Johnston is a University of Maryland student in journalism writing for the News Review.