CarterBY T. CARTER ROSS — Next year marks the 20th anniversary of when my not-yet-at-the-time fiancée and I moved to Hyattsville. Since then, we married, bought a house, had two kids and got a dog. We also found a community.

Ours is a far from unique experience. It shouldn’t surprise anyone who lives here, but Hyattsville is full of passionate, interesting people, and there are numerous community groups, online and in person, where we can all meet, collaborate, and share interests.

The red shirts you see around town proclaiming “I am Hyattsville” highlight how we all are part of the city, and what each individual brings to the city’s diversity is part of what makes Hyattsville such an interesting place.

Hyattsvillians are gin drinkers and teetotalers, PTA members and seniors’ group leaders, newcomers and lifelong residents, parents and singles, and urban farmers and entrepreneurs. We speak many languages, work in many fields and follow many religions — or none. We are writers, artists and performers crossing all media and genres.

We may come to Hyattsville to join friends and family, or we may discover them here after we arrive.

We may meet at Summer Jam or the Hops Hop, at Vigilante or St. Jerome’s, at the Heurich Dog Park or the Duck Pond.

These often-overlapping communities are part of what brings people together, and what makes Hyattsville, Hyattsville.

The Hyattsville Life & Times (HL&T) is the chronicler of our common community and the many community groups that make up our shared experience. And we rely on the community to make that happen. Community isn’t passive; it requires participation and engagement to thrive.

Our advertisers make it possible to pay for the paper, ink and postage every issue requires. Every time you, our readers, patronize a business and let them know you saw their advertisement in the HL&T, it reinforces the value of our newspaper.

As a community newspaper, the HL&T is sustained by volunteer writers and photographers, and we welcome more volunteers. In fact, we need your help in covering the many events and news stories that happen across Hyattsville every day — even a few sentences and a photo that we can share online can help in capturing the richness of life in Hyattsville.

To give readers another way to contribute to the HL&T, the paper’s board recently introduced an online donation option on the website. Because the paper is  a 501(c)(3), your donation is tax deductible, and the full amount goes to bringing you the paper in print and online. Your donation helps keep the HL&T a vibrant source of community information.

Donate, volunteer and patronize our advertisers — there are lots of ways to support the HL&T — and each way you participate sustains and enhances our special community.

T. Carter Ross is a member of the HL&T board of directors.