by Eric Hal Schwartz
The small agrarian community where Benjamin Gaither built his blacksmith shop and tavern in 1802 had been referred to as Log Town or Germansburgh since it was first settled in the mid-18th century in the forests of central Maryland, but over the next few decades people increasingly referred to it as his town, Gaithersburg and officially incorporated
that name in 1878.
Since then, Gaithersburg, just a half hour’s drive northwest of Washington, D.C. has grown to become the fourth largest city in the state. Its attractions and municipal amenities draw many people looking for a home. It also provides a host of options for
Jewish life. “It has a lot of services that people really want,” said Larry Prigal, a real estate agent who has worked with Gaithersburg property for 16 years.
Gaithersburg is o?en listed as one of the best towns in the U.S. to live in, Prigal said,
for reasons like the good public schools, pleasant environment and options that unincorporated cities have less of or not at all like snow removal.
For those looking to move there, cheaper houses can run from around $200,000 to around $400,000 in the eastern, older part of the city while the newer part of town on the western side a single-family house could range from around $650,000 to $1.4 million and all costs in between Prigal said.
The costs reflect the value of the land and the relatively small number of places for sale. “There’s very little inventory,” Prigal said. Some new housing options are becoming
available in the near future but for now homeowners can command a high price for their property.
“It’s a seller’s market,” Prigal said. Gaithersburg, like most of Montgomery County, offers a lot of Jewish life opportunities. These include the Chabad Lubavitch of
Upper Montgomery County, the Reform synagogue Hevrat Shalom Congregation and the Conservative Kehilat Shalom and Shaare Torah synagogues.
It is also not far from the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington in
Rockville. ?e JCCGW, which recently turned 100, houses activities and hosts space for Jewish community life all over Montgomery County. Activities including education, exercise and other opportunities for those looking for nonworship related Jewish life events.
For more details about Jewish life in the area, check out the annual Guide to Jewish
Life published by Washington Jewish Week. It provides extensive details and listings for
any aspect of the Jewish community in the greater Washington, D.C. area. [email protected]