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Mount Rainier has many faces. Too bad Annys Shin (“Grit and Granola,” 7/13) focused mostly on those few represented by political candidates and the police staff. If she had broadened her scope, she might have found that the most essential ingredient of the “Mayberry”s she says we seek—a strong sense of connectedness—already exists in Mount Rainier. I, too, was initially put off by the town’s gritty veneer but moved here because I had heard, through word of mouth rather than press packets, about the neighborhood’s volunteer-run pool, where you can swap impromptu child care and share s’mores around a campfire at “tent nights”; the co-op Montessori school, where the kids reflect the diversity of the neighborhood and the parents are all involved; and the sense of small-town connectedness that comes from knowing who lives in many of the houses you pass as you walk to the park. All that, plus very affordable housing and a short commute to downtown D.C.

Shin’s portrayal certainly won’t create a mad real estate rush in Mount Rainier—too bad for those who will miss out.

Mount Rainier, Md.