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Destinations on my 7-Minute Walk

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1Recently I was wondering how long it takes me to walk to Roosevelt Center, so I timed the walk and got an unexpected answer: just 7 minutes.  That means that when I drive I’m saving what – 3-4 minutes?  That thought has led to my walking more, and to this photo set of places I regularly walk to, all within 7 minutes of my GHI home.

Starting from the west end of town, I pass the museum, which I love but don’t have occasion to visit regularly – unlike the library across the street.  Btw, thanks to all the Greenbelters who pressured the county to put our branch right here, not out on the highway!



Right next door is my favorite building in Greenbelt, the original school and now Community Center.  The facade with the friezes and flowering plants is gorgeous, and the interior takes me back to grade school days.   I go here often for an assortment of events, from voting to live performances to dance and yoga classes and lots more.



On Sundays in the growing season I volunteer at the Greenbelt Farmers Market at Roosevelt Center.  My neighbor Dorrie Bates told me it would be a good way to meet people, and it turns out she was so right.



At the Greenbelt Aquatic and Fitness Center I often stop to photograph the attractive landscaping (while wondering why it stops halfway across the front of the building).  Since interviewing the good people who work here for blog stories (fitness and aquatic), I’m a regular in the equipment rooms.



Plus the pools I sometimes use, that’s a lot for such an affordable yearly fee, thanks to the city.



In front of the fitness/aquatic center there’s lots happening, especially lately with the free outdoor classic movies, which I’m told are drawing crowds by the hundreds. The opening of the Labor Day Festival is shown above, with the crowd eager to hear who was chosen as Greenbelt’s Citizen of the Year.



For me, the heart of Roosevelt Center is the New Deal Cafe, a beloved neighborhood hang-out and music hotbed.  I’m there several times a week, almost every week.



One of my faves, Jennifer Cooper with GrooveSpan.  Great pipes and stage charisma, too.



The New Deal is part of a nice cluster of venues, with the Greenbelt Arts Center and historic movie theater just steps away. Thanks to the proximity and affordability of the GAC, I’ve seen more live theater in the 2 years I’ve lived than in the previous decade or more.  Most of my Greenbelt friends are GAC-goers, too.



The theater looks great now or after a blizzard or really, any time.  And while it’s closed for renovations, I sure miss it.




For several weekends every year Roosevelt Center is a destination all by itself.  I won’t miss a Green Man Festival or a Maker Faire if I can help it, and am hoping the Kale-a-Rama comes back next year.

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Another Labor Day event, the fabulous parade, runs through the middle of town and last year drew all the Democratic candidates for governor, plus Rep. Steny Hoyer and too many others to list.



If there were a prize for Most Frequent Destination there’d be no contest for me – it’s the Co-op grocery and pharmacy.  And while I’m there I can get a haircut or pick up my car when the repairs are done.  Or get my teeth cleaned a couple of blocks away, if I can’t put it off any longer.



The lake.  How could I not visit Greenbelt Lake and walk its 1-mile path as often as possible?




Finally, within 7 minutes I can check on dozens of gardens like the one above that I follow throughout the season, and drop in on friends.

Places YOU Might Walk To

Of course there are still more places I’d walk to if I wanted but simply don’t – like the Youth Center or the tennis and volleyball courts, or Club 125.  I’m just one resident, but that list of my regular destinations by foot is pretty darn impressive.  Walkability, thy name is Greenbelt.

Follow Susan Harris:
Susan started blogging about Greenbelt soon after moving here in 2012, and that first blog has grown into this nonprofit community website. She also created and curates the Greenbelt Maryland YouTube channel. In 2021 Susan joined the Board of Directors of Greenbelt Access TV. Retired from garden writing and teaching, she continues to blog at GardenRant.com.

  1. morninglight mama
    | Reply

    Don’t count out Greenbelt East on the walkable sites, too, though it will take slightly longer than seven minutes. Living over here, I can walk to all the shopping and dining in Greenway Center, and all of our doctors (under five specialities!) are also within walking distance at about 15 minutes. Thankfully, the Spellman Overpass connects our two parts of Greenbelt, so all that you’ve mentioned here are also places I walk to, just taking a bit longer. 🙂

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