Thursday, July 19, 2018

Get Out! - The Events Column, July 20 - 26, 2018

Friends of Turtle Park
We wanted to share some events and activities that list members might be interested in. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 17,800+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv     

Friday July 20 from 10 AM - 3 PM, Mars Day at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum. Celebrate the Red Planet with educational and fun activities for all ages that expose visitors to the latest developments in planetary science. Talk to scientists active in Mars research and mission planning, learn about current and future missions, and see a real meteorite from Mars. Learn about the history of water on Mars, with planetary scientist Ross Irwin; test your skills as you maneuver a robotic rover or collect samples with a robotic arm in this hands-on activity with small robots. Also, quizzes, games, interactive programs - for the  full list of activities and paticipating scientists, go to All free. The Smithsonian Air & Space Museum is on the Mall at 600 Independence Avenue SW.

Friday, July 20 from 5–8 pm, Fridays at Freer/Sackler: Global Nomads, featuring DJ Ayes Cold and Huda Asfour. Spend Friday night on a musical and culinary journey around the world. Catch a set by DJ Ayes Cold, known for her genre-bending sound. Delve into the repertoire of the Arab region and neighboring cultures by joining a Mashriq Maghrib Music Jam Session with Huda Asfour and other local artists. Tibetan cuisine by Chef Dorjee Tsering served in a traditional handcrafted nomad-style tent, Middle Eastern street food by Z&Z, Asian-inspired cold treats by Ruby Scoops, and specialty cocktails by Please Bring Chips will be available for purchase. Cool off inside by viewing the Freer’s exhibitions and a free 7pm screening of Paradox, a Hong Kong action film that will take you into the Thai underworld. Free; no tickets required. In case of rain, activities will move indoors. The Freer/Sackler Museum is on the Mall at 1050 Independence Avenue SW,

Friday, July 20 at 10:56 PM, National Moon Walk Day. It’s the 49th anniversary of that first “small step for a man” on the moon (see: We’ll celebrate this day by doing the moon walk. Step outside around 10:50 PM and then at exactly 10:56 (the same time, EDT, that Neil Armstrong first set foot on the lunar surface), start your dance moves. (If you don’t know how to moon walk, try this Youtube tutorial: If you don’t feel like dancing, you might want to sing instead. Here’s a good song to celebrate this event, “Fly Me to the Moon” - see If you’re wondering if this is the Weekly Fake Event (…..well, it could be. But it can be as real as you like, because you can really do all of these things to celebrate that first Moon Walk on July 20, 1969. 

Saturday, July 21 from 10 AM - 3 PM, Day of Archaeology Festival at Dumbarton House. This event is a fun-filled day for both adults and children. Children can get hands-on with mock excavations, crafts, and 3D printed artifacts. Speak with archaeologists in person and learn about their projects locally and globally. There will be live music, family activities, face painting and food trucks for all to enjoy. The Day of Archaeology Festival is a great way to learn about DC’s local history and visit Dumbarton House! Free. Learn more here: Dumbarton House is at 2715 Q Street, NW. 

Saturday, July 21 at 11 AM, Story Time with Washington Nationals Player Sean Doolittle. Meet Washington Nationals Pitcher Sean Doolittle at this special story time event for families. He will read stories and answer questions. Free. At the Cleveland Park Library, 3310 Connecticut Ave. NW,

Saturday, July 21 from 11 AM - 7 PM, Fiesta Asia Street Fair. Celebrate Asian Heritage at the 12th annual National Asian Heritage festival, featuring more than 1000 performers on five stages, representing more than 20 cultures for 8 consecutive hours. Live performances by musicians, vocalists, dancer, martial artists; Pan-Asian cuisine; a shopping bazaar; kids friendly interactive activities; talent competition, cultural parade, Bollywood street dancing, and exhibits of traditional and contemporary Asian crafts. The Street Fair takes place along Pennsylvania Avenue NW between Third and Sixth Streets. Register here (free):

Saturday, July 21 from 2 - 4 PM, DC Puppy World Cup! Mayor Muriel Bowser Invites You To
The DC Puppy World Cup, celebrating athletic puppies from across the District! The Columbia Heights Gym will be transformed into a Puppy Soccer Field! This awesome day will be offered to puppy owners that have been registered in DC and have all of their needed shots. (Registration has closed, but keep this in mind if you are thinking of entering a pup next year.) Some of DC's cutest athletes will dribble it out in true FIFA Fairplay in Puppy Cup action! Teams will enjoy an up-tempo, safe game that will be fun to watch. We’ll also have a pop-up dog park for adult dogs. Enjoy fun giveaways and prizes for winners of games - while supplies last! Free. At the Columbia Heights Community Center, 1480 Girard Street NW. More info and RSVP:

Saturday, July 21 from 3 - 7 PM, Free Concert at Marvin Gaye Park, presented by Mayor Muriel Bowser and the DC Department of Parks and Recreation, featuring live music, local artists, local vendors, riverside cafe with food samples and dishes from local chefs. Fun for all ages. Free admission.This concert is part of a series taking place on the third Saturday of the summer months -- also on August 18 and September 15. Marvin Gaye Park is at 5200 Foote Street NW  (Riverside Center Entrance). RSVP: 

Saturday, July 21 from 4 - 6:30 PM, WWAC Panel Discussion & Reception. Spend your Saturday afternoon with former members of the Washington Women’s Arts Center. Judith Benderson, Barbara Frank, and Taina Litwak will join the exhibition’s curator, Françoise Yohalem for a panel discussion that looks back at the history of the Washington Women’s Arts Center and its influence on the Washington art scene that still resonates today. A reception will follow the panel. Free and open to the public. At the American University Museum Katzen Arts  Center, northeast corner of Nebraska and Massachusetts Avenues. More info: 

Saturday, July 21 from 6 - 8:45 PM, The Turtle Park Jazz Project. Bring a blanket and a picnic and enjoy a summer evening at the park for adults and kids of all ages! Hear the Susan Jones Quartet - Susan Jones, jazz violin; Tom Lagana, guitar; Dallas Smith, bass; Tom Jones, drums…along with other members of the DC Federation of Musicians. Plus strolling Magician and Juggler for the kids. Variety of food and ice cream trucks on hand. Free admission. Friendship (“Turtle”) Park is at 45th and Van Ness Streets NW. More info:   

Sunday, July 22 at 2 PM, First Day of the Shark Week Celebration. It's Shark Week! We're going deep to explore these fascinating creatures as we dive into a week of exciting programming in the children's room. July 22 at 2pm: For our Sunday crafternoon program we'll create an exciting paper shark craft. July 23 at 4pm: Let's try to build a LEGO shark. Don't let it take a chomp out of you though… July 24 at 2pm: Come for Finding Nemo; stay for the snacks. July 25 at 4pm: Haven't had your fill of sharks yet? Build an underwater seascape to take home and enjoy. July 26 at 4pm: Take a breath as we plunge into some fun shark related games. July 28 at 11am: Ahoy mateys. Family story time this week will feature some real scallywags - pirates may make an appearance  and what story time would be complete without everybody's favorite song "Baby Shark"? All programs are free. At Francis Gregory Library, 3660 Alabama Ave. SE,

Monday July 23  at 1 PM, Passport to Wakanda: Shuri Design Laboratory. Experiment with a wide range of materials and creative supplies to create your own innovative three-dimensional technological models. Each participant will receive a Wakandan passport, and a "customs" stamp for every program they attend. Lunch is also provided. For children ages 5-11. Free. At the Shepherd Park (Juanita E. Thornton) Library, 7420 Georgia Ave. NW. More info: 

Tuesday, July 24 at 4 PM, Summer Challenge: Map Your Neighborhood. Let's study a few maps and then make a map. If it is not of your actual neighborhood, the map can show what you think is important in a neighborhood. This program is for ages 6 - 12. Free. At the Palisades Library,
4901 V Street, NW,

Tuesday, July 24 at 6:30 PM, DIY Home Improvement Workshop: Learn How to Use Power Tools. Looking to make improvements to your home this summer? DCPL is teaming up with Annie's Ace Hardware to provide Do-It-Yourself Workshops. You'll gain the confidence to take on your own home projects and save tons of money in the process. In this workshop, patrons will learn how to wield and operate various power tools. First, a staff member from Annie's Ace Hardware will demonstrate how to use power tools. Then attendees will have the opportunity to practice working with power tools. This workshop is free and demonstration materials will be provided. In the Meeting Room of the Shepherd Park (Juanita E. Thornton) Library, 7420 Georgia Ave. NW,

Tuesday July 24 from 6 - 9 PM, Film screening of Rosenwald: The Remarkable Story of a Jewish Partnership with African American Communities, followed by panel discussion hosted by  DC Public Schools Interim Chancellor Alexander. This powerful documentary tells the life story of Julius Rosenwald, a Jewish businessman and philanthropist who partnered with Booker T. Washington to build more than 5,500 schools that served African-American children in the south from 1915 – 1952. Many Washingtonians know the impact of these schools on the lives of their parents and grandparents and the larger African-American community. The film screening will be followed by a panel discussion that will feature Chancellor Alexander, Stephanie Deutsch – the author of You Need a Schoolhouse, a local philanthropist, and other individuals. The event will be held at American University's Spring Valley Building. Refreshments will be served. Free. Please RSVP to attend: - contact janae.hinson @ dc dot gov with questions.

Wednesday, July 25 at 7 PM, Book Hill Talks: Publishing Science: Experiments and the Royal Society. Abbie Weinberg, reference and outreach specialist for the Folger Shakespeare Library, will lead a discussion about the history of early modern science at the Royal Society—the world's oldest independent scientific academy. Free. At Georgetown Library, 3260 R St. NW, 

Thursday, July 26 at 6:30 PM, 'We are Headed for Some Bad Trouble': Gentrification and Displacement in Washington, DC, 1920-2018. For nearly two decades now, DC residents have been grappling with a city that is becoming younger, wealthier and whiter - a city that is gentrifying. In wide-ranging and sometimes heated debates about the topic - which have included allegations of “swagger jacking” and accusations of “black Columbusing” - District residents have had to confront difficult issues of race, class and power. This seminar will place these debates in historical context. Surveying the past 100 years of "private revitalization" or "gentrification" in DC, it will answer the questions: What is gentrification? How does it happen? Who benefits? Who loses out? And what have DC residents done to address this issue in the past? George Derek Musgrove is an associate professor of history at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and the co-author of Chocolate City: A History of Race and Democracy in the Nation’s Capital. Registration required - Free. At the Woodridge Library, 1801 Hamlin Street NE, This event is part of a series of seminars inspired by the teach-ins at Resurrection City, the Poor People’s Campaign civil rights encampment on the National Mall during the summer of 1968. The series is part of DC Public Library’s year of art, activism and education commemorating the 50th anniversary of the events of 1968. Visit for more information or contact Washingtoniana librarian Michele Casto at michele.casto @ dc dot gov with questions.     

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Still Life with Robin: Water in Old Bottles

by Peggy Robin

Wasn’t yesterday fun! Were you in a Boil Water Alert Area Home? I think that’s what they should have called it: BWAAH! My house was BWAAH until the revised map was posted later that afternoon, putting Cleveland Park and many other neighborhoods to the north of CP in the clear.

I thought I was well prepared. There’s a closet in the basement we’ve kept stocked with emergency supplies, including flashlights, glowsticks, slow-burning candles, and some large jugs of bottled water, plus a case of smaller bottles. So I put a big pot of water on the boil, and then went down to the basement to bring up one of the jugs and perhaps a smaller bottle or two, to have some water available for immediate use, until the pot had boiled and then cooled down. But as soon as I brought up the stored water, I noticed the expiration date -- it was 2007. Does water expire? When I googled that one, here’s what I found []:

Water bottles all have expiration dates. You’ve probably seen them — little black dotted numbers marking when you should toss your water because it’s “gone bad.” Wait… Here’s where we get confused. How can water go bad? It can’t. Water, like oxygen or steel or any other naturally occurring substance, is simply a chemical compound; it’s ageless. However, humans have taken to storing natural-occurring water in plastic, artificial, flimsy containers, and the bottles can go bad. The plastic compounds can break down over time and leak into your water….. Plus, plastic isn't impermeable. Algae or bacteria —not the good kind — seep in and grow inside your bottled water if you leave it for too long. This can still happen even if the bottle is closed. So if you’ve waited long enough, once you finally open up that “purified” water you’re also likely opening up a bacteria-ridden breeding ground for harmful organisms.

So much for that eleven-year-old water! But no problem; it was just a matter of replacing the stock – and high time, too. But I couldn’t run to the grocery store right away. I had an appointment in Herndon, VA, so would have to pick up the water on the way home. It was well past noon by the time I was leaving Herndon. It’s a very typical bedroom community – at least out  where I was. All around me, just single family homes on big lots. I did not pass by a single store before I was back on I-66. And that meant I was back in DC before I found a convenient place to stop off at a Giant. And by the time I did (no surprise!) the shelves had all been emptied.

Still, I gave it a shot, and corralled a nice store clerk and asked if there were any boxes of water in the back. He went to look and returned in a minute with the last four bottles of a brand of bottled water I’d never seen before – Eternal. I took all four of the one-liter bottles. By the time I got home and had checked in at to see the status of the alert, my neighborhood was out of the BWAA. So I brought those four bottles down to the basement emergency supply closet to put them away. In the process, I discovered a few things about this brand: 1. It comes in a bottle that’s flat on one side, so that it’s made to be stored on its side in a space-saving, non-rolling stack; 2. The bottle is made from BPA-free material; and 3. It does not have an expiration date anywhere on the bottle, so I’m assuming that means if I store it in the closet and there’s no water emergency again for another 11 years…..I’m good!

Still Life with Robin is published on the Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local on Saturdays.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Get Out! - The Events Column

Photo by Lorie Shaull vis Wikimedia Creative Commons
We wanted to share some events and activities that list members might be interested in. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 17,800+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv   

Friday, July 13 from 5 - 8 PM, Fridays at the Freer/Sackler: Mystic Folk and Asian Flavors, Featuring Folks of Bengal - plus Hong Kong Film Festival Screening. Meet us on the Freer plaza for a fusion of flavors and experiences, featuring music from West Bengal, India, by the Folks of Bengal. Singing scroll painters and mystic music makers known as Bauls will incorporate poetry, traditional strings and drums, and colorful paintings into their performance. Hong Kong street food by Tiger Fork, modern Chinese and Korean cuisine by CHIKO, Asian-inspired cold treats by Ruby Scoops, and specialty cocktails by Please Bring Chips will be available for purchase. Cool off inside by viewing the Freer’s exhibitions and a free 7 pm screening of Shock Wave, a pitch-perfect action flick that was one of 2017’s biggest hits in Hong Kong. Free. In case of rain, activities will move indoors. The Freer/Sackler is at 1050 Independence Avenue SW, 

Friday July 13 from 7 - 9 PM, Opening Reception and Artist Talk: Refuse/REFUSE. While investigating the plastic pollution in our oceans, Kirsty Little kept coming up against huge numbers that she really could not comprehend. Americans use 35,000,000,000 (35 billion) plastic bottles each year. We have barely reduced our plastic footprint since plastic production began 50 years ago. Much has ended up in our seas and landfills. Trillions of micro plastics virtually invisible to the human eye are being eaten by plankton and working their way up the seafood chain to our plates. Kirsty Little’s installation in the 355 Pod Space located on Route 355 near Rockville Town Square is one of the ways that she is working to raise consciousness about plastic pollution. She wants people to think about how many plastic items they use once and then discard. She wants to sensitize people to the costs of careless consumption and disposal of plastic.More about the art and artist at: The Exhibition runs June 29 - September 23, 2018. Free.

Friday, July 13, all day, Paraskevidekatriaphobia Day. Are you afraid of Friday the Thirteenth? No? Good for you! Because if you were, this would be an especially scary one, as it’s the second one of 2018, occurring exactly 13 weeks after the first one on April 13th. If you are superstitious about this confluence of the day and date, then your event for this date is a non-event: don’t go anywhere - stay under the covers in bed and avoid bad luck! Whether you are or are not afraid of this date, it’s not really the Weekly Fake Event, because it really is Friday, and it really is the 13th, and there really are people who are freaked out about it. See to learn more about this Friday the 13th and others in coming and past years.

Saturday, July 14 from 10 AM - 4 PM, Commemoration of the 154th anniversary of the Battle of Fort Stevens. Please join us anytime from 10 AM - 4 PM for the commemoration of the 154th anniversary of the Battle of Fort Stevens - the only Civil War battle in the Nation’s Capital and the only time in the history of the United States that a sitting President (Lincoln) has come under direct enemy fire. Ft Stevens is located at 13th and Quackenbos Streets NW (also known as Elizabeth Thomas Way). The commemoration is sponsored by the National Park Service with the support of the Alliance to Preserve the Civil War Defenses of Washington. It will feature a special opening program at 10 AM that includes Frank Smith, founder and director of the African American Civil War Memorial and Museum. This will be followed by military and civilian reenactors, hourly musket firings, talks by Civil War historians, living history demonstrations, live period music and Civil War dancing, and special programs for children and teens. It will end with a memorial service at Battleground National Cemetery where many of the Union soldiers who fought at the battle are buried. For more information and a copy of the program, see and visit: Free.

Saturday July 14 at 12 noon, Dorothy I. Height Day. Learn about the woman Barack Obama called "Godmother of the Civil Rights Movement." Hear stories about her activism and accomplishments in DC and around the world. Attendees will also learn about the original and revived Poor Peoples Campaign. This program is free and open to the public.At the Benning (Dorothy I. Height) Library, 3935 Benning Road NE, 

Saturday July 14 at 1 PM, Hunger Wall Poster Making Workshop. Join an artists-in-residence event to create original posters in this hands-on workshop, incorporating imagery from the Poor People’s Campaign Collection in DC Public Library's Special Collections. In 1968, residents and visitors in Resurrection City drew and painted on a temporary plywood wall to express messages of solidarity among different races, cultures and regions of the country in the human rights struggle. Inspired by the Resurrection City mural, which bore the message “Hunger’s Wall: Tell it Like it Is,” our artists,  Nando Álvarez, Adrienne Gaither, Monolith DC and Justin Poppe,  have created poster-making kits allowing visitors to combine activist imagery from 1968 with their own messages for 2018. This workshop will feature artist Justin Poppe. Free. At the Petworth Library 4200 Kansas Ave. NW, 

Saturday, July 14 from 2 - 4 PM, Bastille Day Celebration. The Friends of Fessenden Park are celebrating Bastille Day and you are invited! Join them and our favorite local French restaurants Matisse and Le Chat Noir for an afternoon of French-inspired fun. Sample crepes and other sweet treats from Matisse and Le Chat Noir. Sip French wine (or juice). Learn to play the French lawn game Petanque. Plant a sunflower to take home with you, and add a bit of the French countryside to your windowsill. Participate in family-friendly craft projects. Enjoy music. Register online: Tickets are just $10; one child ticket included free with a paid adult. Tickets include all food, beverage, and activities. Proceeds support programming and maintenance of the park by the Friends of Fessenden Park (at Wisconsin Avenue, Fessenden Street and 42nd Street NW)

Saturday, July 14 at 7 PM, Out of the Shadows: A Creative Response to the Removal of TPS. A Performance That Speaks to Today's Headlines. Stories of courage and resistance by immigrant youth, adults, day laborers, and migrant workers. Presented by GALA Theatre. Free. At Columbia Heights Plaza, 14th Street and Park Road NW,

Sunday, July 15 at 2 PM, Crafty Ice Cream. We dream of ice cream! Enjoy two of our favorite summer activities: being outside and finger-painting. We'll be creating "ice cream cones" with paint and other supplies, so come dressed to get messy and make a finger-painted "ice cream" craft. This is an outdoor activity, which will occur weather permitting. In case of inclement weather, the program will be rescheduled. Recommended for ages 4 and up with their caregivers. Free. At the Tenley-Friendship Neighborhood Library, 4450 Wisconsin Ave. NW,

Sunday, July 15 at 2 PM, Jazz in the Basement - with Allyn Johnson. The DC Public Library and the Goethe-Institut Washington present local pianist, Allyn Johnson, a multi-talented musician, composer, arranger and producer whose trademark sound gives brilliance and fortitude to the art of jazz improvisation. This free event is located at the Goethe-Institut Washington at 1990 K St. NW (enter on 20th St.) More info: 

Sunday, July 15 from 2 - 9 PM, World Music Festival. If you've ever been curious about all different cultures that make Montgomery County great, head over to Downtown Silver Spring on July 15th. You'll enjoy food and live performances. Free admission. At the Silver Spring Civic Center, 1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring, MD. Register at

Monday, July 16 at 1 PM, Passport to Wakanda: Killmonger Mask Museum. Children will explore Igbo tribal culture and create their own ritual masks. For children ages 5-11. Each participant in the Passport to Wakanda program will receive a Wakandan passport, and a "customs" stamp for every program they attend. Lunch is also provided. Free. At the Shepherd Park (Juanita E. Thornton) Library, 7420 Georgia Ave. NW,

Monday, July 16 at 6 PM, Baseball Talk Before All-Star Game with MLB All-Star Week Panel.
Moderator: Leslie Heaphy. Speakers: Fred Frommer; Aviva Kempner; David Rapp. On the eve of baseball’s first All-Star Game in DC in half a century, a stellar line-up of baseball experts and seers, led by Society for American Baseball Research member David Rapp (author of Tinker to Evers to Chance) will discuss the intersecting destinies of baseball and American society. Bring your ideas, questions, and opinions! This event is co-sponsored by the Washington DC and Baltimore chapters of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), the University of Chicago's DC Alumni club, and East City Bookshop. Register here: Free, but please RSVP to rsvp @ eastcitybookshop dot com. At East City Bookshop, 645 Pennsylvania Ave SE

Tuesday, July 17 at 4 PM, In the Zone: Bubbles and Chalk Art. Have fun with bubbles and chalk art. In the Zone is held the third Tuesday of the month. Best for ages 4-12. Free. At the Tenley-Friendship Neighborhood Library, 4450 Wisconsin Ave. NW,

Wednesday, July 18 from 6 - 8 PM, Disaster Preparedness Forum. In Celebration of the 28th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act the DC Office of Disablity Rights is kicking off a Disaster Preparedness Forum, where you can: Learn about what to do in an emergency or disaster situation; Learn how to build a disaster preparedness kit; Learn how to make a plan that is tailored just for you! The location is wheelchair accessible. There will be onsite ASL-English Interpreters. To request other reasonable accommodations or if you have questions please contact Julia.Wolhandler @ dc dot gov or call 202-727-2890. Please RSVP: Free. At the Cleveland Park Library, 3310 Connecticut Avenue NW, Lower Level, Meeting Room 4.

Wednesday, July 18 at 7 PM, DC Youth Orchestra In Concert at Lincoln Memorial. The DC Youth Orchestra (DCYO) is the premiere ensemble of the DC Youth Orchestra Program and this concert at the Lincoln Memorial is the kick-off concert for DCYO’s 2018 trip to Italy. Concert includes music by Aaron Copland, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Charles Ives, Arturo Márquez, and more. Admission is free; no tickets are required. More info on DCYO Program at 

Thursday July 19 at 6 PM, Information Session for First-Time Home Buyers. Tired of renting? Are you ready to buy your own home? We can help. At this session, sponsored by nonprofit housing counseling program University Legal Services, find out: How to qualify to buy a house;
About the HPAP program for first-time home buyers; How to attend future information seminars;
Answers to any questions you have about the home-buying process. University Legal Services is funded by the District of Columbia Department of Housing and Community Development. The session will be presented in English and in Spanish. Free. At the Mt. Pleasant Library, 3160 16th St. NW - entrance to Mt. Pleasant Library is on Lamont St,      

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Still Life with Robin: Welcome Back, DCist

DCist is back!
by Peggy Robin

DCist was out of our lives for seven long months + a week -- from November 2, 2017 to June 11, 2018. How we missed it! And how good it is to have it back again, telling us everything we needed to know about goings-on in our city. Practical things, like how the filming of Wonder Women has closed off streets around MacPherson Square this weekend:

….and things that are both practical and fun, like a guide to What’s Opening at the Capital Fringe Festival and Where to Find It:

And then there are stories that are just weird – like “Rat Attack in Dupont Circle”

Here’s another animal story you might find more to your liking: 
Be sure to scroll down and play the video of the deer frolicking in the Metro.

Then there’s the feature I always loved best (and glad to see it resurrected in the new DCist):
“Overheard in DC”

While exploring what’s old and what's new in DCist, I just happened across the last issue of the old DCist before the hiatus (Nov 2, 2017), and found this recommendation of a great source for hyper-local news:

“YOU WANT TO BE A PART OF THE CONVERSATION: Want to learn if you're the only one who got packages stolen off your porch? Interested in finding a new nanny? Concerned about changes taking place in your neighborhood? I am a not-so-secret sucker for community listservs, which serve all these purposes and more. Most neighborhoods have one, most famously Cleveland Park, and they work by distributing emails to a list of people who've signed up, with varying degrees of curation.“

Well, if DCist is going to plug the Cleveland Park Listserv, I am more than happy to return the favor to DCist – especially now that it’s back and better than ever!

Still Life with Robin is published on the Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local, usually on Saturdays but occasionally on Sundays.

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Get Out! - The Events Column for July 6 - July 12, 2018

Heurich House Museum
We wanted to share some events and activities that list members might be interested in. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 17,800+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv   

Friday July 6 from 6 - 8 PM, Heurich House: Made in America. Grab a beer from this month’s sponsor brewery, Atlas Brew Works, while touring the museum’s first floor and shopping the goods available from local, immigrant makers. This month’s “First on First” event will highlight the work of immigrants. Artist and author of the cookbook “Cook Korean!” Robin Ha will present her work alongside designer and owner of Printed Wild, Eva Calonder. Visit a special exhibit in the new Carriage House Gallery featuring works by artist and immigrant Lily Spandorf. Then, design your own flag at our activity table, creating a take-home piece of art. Brewmaster Studios, located in the historic carriage house of Heurich House, regularly participates in First Friday along with local Dupont Circle galleries and studios. Please visit the First Friday website to view all the other galleries and exhibitions open for the First Friday in July -- go to: For more information about the Heurich House program, visit: Heurich House is at 1307 New Hampshire Avenue NW. This event is free and open to the public.

Friday, July 6 from 6 - 9 PM, “Friday Night in the Heights,” featuring Chuggalug (pop/rock/cover band). Bring your lawn chair and dancing shoes and join us at Cathedral Commons, Newark Street at Wisconsin Avenue, for a free performance from Chuggalug, with local food and drink, and fun for the whole family.

Saturday July 7 from 11 AM - 3 PM, Family Day: Dear Hamilton, Love Washington. The George Washington University Museum invites you for a day of family-friendly activities celebrating America's founding fathers. Learn the basics of screen printing to create your own postcard featuring George Washington or Alexander Hamilton. Also, join an interactive story time in the galleries and explore historical newspapers and vintage postcards in the exhibition, Breaking News: Alexander Hamilton and Greetings from Washington. All ages welcome. Story Time: 11 AM and 1 PM. Screen Printing Workshops: Sign up at the front desk for one of these three sessions: 11:30 AM, 12:30 PM, 1:30 PM. Free. The George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum is at 701 21st Street, NW,

Saturday, July 7 from 11 AM - 2 PM, Chinatown Community Festival (rescheduled from June 2). The DC Mayor's Office on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs invites you to experience the tastes, sounds and feel of Asia at the 2018 Chinatown Community Festival in Chinatown Park at 5th & I St NW., Family-Friendly -Free - RSVP required by 11:59 pm on Friday, July 6 at Eventbrite: NOTE: You do not need to RSVP again if you already RSVPed and got a ticket for this event on June 2. That ticket is still valid. Street food provided by local APIA restaurants. Lively performances including Wushu, a lion dance and a dog tricks show, Tinikling, rice flour drawing, kimono dressing, and other cultural demonstrations, including: live screen printing; fitness demonstrations; free face painting, balloon twisting, henna and other Asian arts and crafts. For more information, or to request reasonable accommodations, contact MOAPIA at 202-727-3120.

Saturday, July 7 from 11 AM - 4 PM, Art Exhibit: “The Finnish Illusion.” The Embassy of Finland hosts a new exhibit featuring works by three Finnish female artists: Ilona Cutts, Katja Tukiainen and Maria Wolfram. The exhibit will be on view from June 13 to August 26 and will be open to the public on Saturday, July 11, as well as July 28, August 11, and August 25. This trio of Finnish painters brings a sensitive, strong and feminine approach to their medium and subject matter. Their art is fearless and thoughtful. The presence of humor is evident. The Finnish Illusion exhibition consists of figurative paintings and poetic installations. Free. At the Embassy of Finland, 3301 Massachusetts Avenue NW. More information:

Saturday, July 7 from 6 - 10 PM, Alexandria's 269th Birthday Celebration. Come to Alexandria to celebrate America's 242nd birthday and Alexandria's 269th birthday along the Potomac waterfront at Oronoco Bay Park. Bring lawn chairs, blankets and a picnic and enjoy live music by the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra, patriotic birthday cake, food vendors and a dazzling fireworks display (starts at 9:30pm). As George Washington's hometown, Alexandria is a patriotic hotspot, filled with tours by bike, boat and foot, historic sites and art galleries, plus restaurants and boutiques to explore before heading to the waterfront for the grand celebration. Admission is free. For more information call the Special Events Hotline at 703-746-5592. More info:

Sunday, July 8 at 3 PM, The Washington Metropolitan Philharmonic Association presents composer and pianist Haskell Small in an afternoon of chamber music as part of their free summer chamber music series. Donations appreciated. At The Lyceum, Alexandria's History Museum, 201 S. Washington St., Alexandria, VA. More info:

Monday, July 9 at 10:30 AM, Pacific Rhythm. Enjoy traditional music and dances from Hawaii, Tahiti, New Zealand, Fiji, the Cook Islands and Samoa, presented with authentic costumes for each island. You’ll be up on your feet as this dance troupe teaches you some Polynesian dances. A family program for children of all ages. Free. At the Chevy Chase Library, 5625 Connecticut Ave. NW,

Monday July 9 at 1 PM, Passport to Wakanda: Nakia Ring Fling Arena. Test your physical and computational skills and earn your own Vibranium with our Wakandan hoop and ring challenge. Other programs in the Passport to Wakenda series: Killmonger Mask Museum on July 16: Children will explore Igbo tribal culture and create their own ritual masks; Shuri Design Laboratory on July 23: Experiment with a wide range of materials and creative supplies to create your own innovative three-dimensional technological models. Programs are for children ages 5-11. Each participant will receive a Wakandan passport, and a "customs" stamp for every program they attend. Lunch is also provided. Free. At the Shepherd Park (Juanita E. Thornton Library, 7420 Georgia Ave. NW,

Tuesday, July 10 at 4 PM, Explorer's Club: Sound and Science. Join us for all things STEAM (that's science, technology, engineering, arts and math—something for everyone). We're all about sound this month. Come make some noise and do some hands-on activities to investigate sound. Recommended for children ages 4 and older with their caregivers. Free. At the Tenley-Friendship Library 4450 Wisconsin Ave. NW,

Tuesday, July 10 at 5 PM, Free Bike Repair Pop-Up With Gearin' Up Bicycles. Join Gearin’ Up Bicycles at the Deanwood Library for a free two-hour bike repair pop-up clinic. Get your bike ready for the summer by learning all about simple bike repairs, safety and general maintenance from this local nonprofit. The Deanwood Library is at 1350 49th St. NE,

Wednesday, July 11 is 7-Eleven Day….and no, this is NOT the weekly fake event! This is a real thing: You can go to the Cleveland Park 7-11, or any other 7-11 in the US, tell them it’s 7-11 day and get a free small  Slurpee in your favorite flavor. More about National 7-Eleven Day here: 

Thursday, July 12 from 7 - 9:30 PM, Fort Reno Concert Series: featured bands are: Taciturn (; Born Dad (; and
Messthetics ( This free concert series has the same rules as in years past:  Do not bring glass bottles, alcohol, or drugs; do bring your friends, babies, and dogs. Fort Reno Park is at 4000 Chesapeake St NW, map at Summer concert line-up here: 

Thursday, July 12 from 9:30 - 10 PM, Improve the Band Names Brainstorming Session. We don’t want to sound harsh, but there’s no turning away from reality: So many of the band names of this year’s Fort Reno Concert series are lamer than lame! Let’s give our local bands some wisdom from the crowd and help them come up with much catchier names! Stick around after the concert on Thursday night (details above) and come armed with your cleverest, most appealing band names. Or come ready to brainstorm with your neighbors and come up some meme-worthy names together! Or use this very handy band-name generator: To register for this free event and submit names in advance, go to: (For those of you who have been following the Events Column faithfully for more than a year....yes, this is the second annual occurrence of this event. And we intend to keep it up, as long as the Fort Reno Concert series has bands with names like Born Dad, Messthetics, Tired All the Time (July16), and Branch Manager (August 2).           

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Still Life with Robin: Why I'm on the March Today
by Peggy Robin

I’m off to the Families Belong Together March, and I hope many of my neighbors will be there too. The event starts at 11 AM at Lafayette Square. You can find out the details here:

If you’ve been reading this column for any length of time, you know I usually stick to neighborhood and DC-related topics. But this isn’t really a departure from that theme. The policy to mistreat, harass, discourage and deport immigrants -- especially refugees and asylum seekers – affects so many right here in our neighborhood. It’s a local issue, as much as it’s a national shame. You may not know who around you is affected but I assure you, they are here. It could be the server in your favorite coffee shop, or the dishwasher you don’t see at the back of the house; it could be the person who’s working in the garden next door; or it could be your next door neighbor. Immigrants are in all walks of American life. They have been coming to America, fleeing persecution, since the day the Mayflower landed on Plymouth Rock. But now some of those who have come seeking shelter have had their families torn apart, their children taken from their arms. It’s unconscionable; it’s heartbreaking.

Now I don’t happen to know anyone who’s come seeking a new life and is suffering this trauma now. I have to go back a generation to find my own family connection to this kind of desperation. When my mother was a high school student in the late 30’s, living in the Bronx, her parents took in two female cousins, sisters, single women in their forties, who managed to escape from Eastern Europe before the Nazis marched in. But they could not get permission to come to the US; they got as far as Canada – where they knew no one, spoke neither English nor French, and had no prospects to work. So my mother’s father did what he was sure was the right thing: he smuggled them into the US, where he knew he could provide for them until they were able to support themselves.

He drove up to Vermont and then across the border into Canada, picked them up, hid them under a blanket in the back of the car (in another relative’s telling, they’re in the trunk) and drove them to safety to his house off the Grand Concourse. He put them up in his house for years. He found them work doing fancy embroidered monograms for a department store. For the first years they were in the Bronx, they maintained a fictional residence in Canada. Then at some point enough time had passed that they were eligible to become Canadian citizens, and my grandfather smuggled them BACK over the border to Canada, where they stayed just long enough to take the Canadian citizenship test. Once they had received their Canadian citizenship, they were able to cross back legally into the US, without a quota, without fear. So they became legal immigrants to the US from Canada, and resumed living in New York, where they’d been safe, but illegal, for all those years before.

As for their families back in Poland? We don’t think any of them survived. The story we heard is that when the Nazis came to their town, they locked all the Jews in the synagogue and set it on fire, killing everyone, man, woman, and child.

I wonder if in similar circumstances I would do something as bold as my grandfather to help people fleeing for their lives. Marching this day takes so little effort, but I am happy to do so.

Still Life with Robin is published on the Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local on Saturdays.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Get Out! - The Events Column

Photo by Thomas S Mann
We wanted to share some events and activities that list members might be interested in. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 17,800+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv   

Friday June 29 from 12 - 2 PM, Handi-hour Pop-up at Golden Triangle. Enjoy fun in the park, food trucks, and try your hand at a Handi-hour craft inspired by Burning Man, as part of No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man at the Renwick. Free. Outside the Renwick Gallery at 17th and K Streets NW. More info:

Saturday, June 30 from 8 AM - 1 PM, City Wide Truck Touch. This event will feature a variety of free activities for kids and adults. A host of DC government agencies will present and demonstrate nearly 40 vehicles used to clean and repair streets, change traffic lights, collect refuse, clear snow, provide emergency services, administer mobile healthcare and more. Kids can climb aboard, work the gears and honk the horn! This event is free for everyone. At RFK Auxiliary Turf Field, 279 Oklahoma Avenue NE, Stadium Lot 7. More info:

Saturday, June 30 from 10 AM - 5 PM, Celebrate Independents Day in Georgetown. Join over 30 participating stores and restaurants for special discounts, plus Fourth of July-themed refreshments, activities and entertainment! Kids' activities include face painting, balloon artist, and photo op with an Uncle Sam stilt walker. Free admission. Some activities are at the TD Bank lot at 1611 Wisconsin Ave and at the FORNASH lot, 3217 P St. More info:   

Saturday, June 30 from 11 AM - 12:45 PM, Asteroid Day: Defending Planet Earth - a panel discussion at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum. Explore how we protect ourselves from asteroids. On June 30, 1908, an asteroid caused a massive air blast that flattened thousands of square miles in Siberia. To mark the 110 year anniversary of the largest impact-related event in modern history, we're bringing in asteroid experts to discuss the threats asteroids pose and how we are protecting ourselves from the danger they may cause. Bring your questions as we talk all things asteroids! The discussion will be moderated by the Applied Physics Laboratory's Cheryl Reed, who works on the asteroid deflection demonstration mission. Speakers include: Museum geologist Jim Zimbelman on the importance of impacts throughout the solar system, NASA astronaut Tom Jones on the asteroid hazard from a scientist-astronaut's perspective, NASA scientists Lindley Johnson and Kelly Fast on NASA's planetary defense activities. Free. Presented online and at The National Air and Space Museums at Independence Ave at 6th St, SW,     

Saturday, June 30 at 2 PM, Top Secret/Undercover Games. Uncover the identity of the werewolf in One Night Werewolf. Prove your team has what it takes to survive the world of espionage in Spyfall and Codenames and go wild with the speedy word game Anomia. Free. At the Georgetown Library, 3260 R St. NW,

Sunday, July 1 from 4 - 7 PM, It’s the annual Rosedale BBQ! Rosedale will provide the burgers, dogs and watermelon. What Can You Bring? Please bring (1) drinks for your family, and (2) a side dish to share with your neighbors (fruit salad, side salad, brownies, chips, etc.). This year marks the first annual "Best Brownie" contest - with "Kid" and "Adult" divisions. Bring your best baking skills and try to take the secret prize. A plate of your best, home-baked brownies is all you need to enter. Music by The Cleveland Park Jazz Quartet.  We will also have face painting, balloon twisting - and as a special treat, a sampling of specialty beverages provided by Silver. Don't forget your blankets and lawn chairs. Please leave furry friends at home. Rosedale is at 35th and Newark Streets NW.

Monday July 2 at 1 PM, Passport to Wakanda. Learn about the roots and meaning behind West African Adinkra symbols and create your own unique stamps and characters. This is the first of a series of “passport” events in July. Other programs are: Nakia Ring Fling Arena (July 9); Killmonger Mask Museum (July 16); Shuri Design Laboratory (July 23). All programs are free. For children ages 5-11. Each participant will receive a Wakandan passport, and a "customs" stamp for every program they attend. Lunch is also provided. At the Shepherd Park (Juanita E. Thornton) Library, 7420 Georgia Ave. NW. For more about  Studio Lab Express, see More about the Passport to Wakanda programs here:

Monday, July 2 from 7 - 9:30 PM, The Fort Reno Summer Concert Series kicks off with Lotion Princess, Time Is Fire, and Des Demonas. This free concert series has the same rules as in years past:  Do not bring glass bottles, alcohol, or drugs; do bring your friends, babies, and dogs. Fort Reno Park is at 4000 Chesapeake St NW, map at Summer concert line-up here: 

Tuesday July 3 at 3:30 PM, Art Attack. Study great artists, then create your own masterpiece inspired by their work. Artists include Picasso, Romare Bearden, Andy Warhol, Matisse and Aboriginal Dot Painting. This free program is for ages 6 and up. At the Georgetown Library, 3260 R St. NW,  

Wednesday, July 4 at 11 AM, The Palisades Fourth of July Parade and Picnic – the best small town parade in DC! The parade goes from Whitehaven Pkwy, down MacArthur, takes a left on Edmunds, a left on Sherier and ends at the Palisades Rec Center. Following the parade, there is a free picnic for all at the Rec Center featuring hot dogs, watermelon, drinks, live music and moon bounces. Come one, come all! Come early, between 10 - 11 AM if you want to line up to march in the parade. For what to wear, what to bring, what things you can toss to the crowd, go to: 

Wednesday, July 4 at 9:10 PM, Soundless Fireworks Show for People Who Startle Easily. Do you like to watch fireworks but just can’t stand all that BANG-BOOM-BANG? Here’s the 4th of July event you’ve been waiting for! We will meet in an underground former fallout shelter -- completely soundproof! So no matter who’s outside making noise -- whether they’re setting off firecrackers or putting on a big, professional fireworks display -- you won’t hear a thing! We’ll have a big-screen TV set up to watch “A Capital Fourth” with the sound off. And we’ll play our own gentle soundtrack as we watch the silent but colorful bursts of embers shot from cannons; our playlist includes choral hymns to America such as America, the Beautiful, and “This Land Is Your Land,” plus some gentle folk songs about the land, like this version of Oh Shenandoah. We will serve apple pie and ice cream. Doesn’t this sound appealing! And don’t you wish we were really doing this, instead of just making it up as our Weekly Fake Event!

Thursday July 5 at 12:30 PM, DowntownDC Live: Rock the Stacks All Stars with Renell & Ardamus. Head over to Franklin Park on your lunch break for some great tunes and progressive dialogue with DC Public Library's Rock the Stacks Allstars, featuring local hip hop artists, Renell & Ardamus. What is Rock the Stacks, you ask? Watch this Promo Video from the 2017 gala event: This concert is part of DowntownDC BID's LIVE at Franklin Park Thursday series of local music in the park! Franklin Park is located at 13th and Eye St. NW. This event is free and open to the public. Complete details at:   

Thursday, July 5 from 7 - 9:30 PM, Fort Reno Summer Concerts Series presents No Plans and Don Zientara, owner of famed recording studio Inner Ear. This free concert series has the same rules as in years past: Do not bring glass bottles, alcohol, or drugs; do bring your friends, babies, and dogs. Fort Reno Park is at 4000 Chesapeake St NW, map at Full summer concert line-up here:    

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Still Life With Robin: Not Feeling Festive These Days? There's a New Festival in Town That May Change Your Attitude...

Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian

by Peggy Robin

It’s Solstice Saturday! If you haven’t heard of this, it’s because this is the first year of what we hope will turn into an annual tradition at the Smithsonian. On the Saturday after the summer solstice, the Smithsonian museums are staying open until dusk – and a few have activities on till midnight -- to celebrate the longest day of the year.

Here’s the announcement from Smithsonian NewsDesk:
and you can find the schedule of activities here:

The Smithsonian is holding these events in conjunction with a new four-day arts festival called By the People, which started on Thursday and features with an engaging mix of free performances, art installations and exhibits, demonstrations, talks on all kinds of topics, and interactive shows (like "Yarn Bomb" - an interactive knitting project). Most are free; a few require reservations; a few also charge an admission fee.

There are events at FIVE different venues:

On top of that, there are one-time events at these satellite locations:

Just to give you a sense of what kind of thing the By the People Festival presents – take a look at just these two events:

Augmented Reality Art Hunt by ARTECHOUSE (installations at all Festival hub locations)

Or the Pop-Up Dance/Video Performance by the Bridgeman-Packer Troupe (this afternoon and evening at THEARC and Union Market and Sunday at Union Market – all free!)

For a broader sense of what you can see and do at the Festival, here’s the write-up in the Washington Post: Will the By the People Festival turn out to be as great as Austin’s South By Southwest Festival? Go and find out!

Still Life with Robin is published on the Cleveland ParkListserv and on All Life Is Local on Saturdays.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Get Out! - The Events Column June 21 - 28, 2018
We wanted to share some events and activities that list members might be interested in. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 17,800+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv 

Thursday, June 21 - Sunday, June 24, By the People Festival. This new arts and dialogue festival is bringing large art installations, free pop-up performances, curated conversations, augmented reality, and family-friendly activities to five festival hubs in all four quadrants of the District. The inaugural festival is focused on the founding themes of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. A free four-day pass (available at any festival hub) gets you into all the free events at all 5 festival hubs: Smithsonian Arts & Industries Building; Washington National Cathedral;  The Parks at Walter Reed; Union Market; THEARC. The festival hubs will be open each day from 10am-6pm, except for special evening hours at the Smithsonian Arts & Industries Building, open Saturday until midnight! Full schedule for all days available here: More info:

Friday, June 22 from 1:30 - 3:30 PM, Bloomsday at OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at American University). Bloomsday is an annual tribute to James Joyce’s Ulysses, usually celebrated with public readings of the novel. This year we will be reading Ithaca, the 17th (penultimate) Episode of Ulysses. Joyce wrote this chapter in the form of a catechism, and literal responses to the questions posed make for a kind of humorous kaleidoscope that showcases many of the author's talents. The reading will be followed by a cast party to which all attendees are invited. The script is available to read or download as an attachment to the supporting website for this event at Bloomsday by OLLI 2018, Register for Bloomsday at: OLLI is at the American University Law School building, 4801 Massachusetts Ave. NW. 

Saturday, June 23 from 10 AM - 1 PM, The 3rd Annual Family Fun Festival. Come to Sibley Hospital for a day of family fun. There will be games, activities, entertainment, snacks, Zumba, giveaways, and more, including a Diaper Drive for families in need. Please bring a pack of diapers to the Festival. Bring your family to meet others born at Sibley! This event will take place in the front parking lot (2) across from Building A. Sunshine only - no rain date. Free parking is available in the visitor parking garage. Free admission. Sibley Memorial Hospital is at 5255 Loughboro Road NW. More info: .

Saturday, June 23 at 11 AM, World Cup Viewing Party with a DC United Player. Patrick Mullins, a forward for DC United, will join us to watch the World Cup match between South Korea and Mexico. During halftime, Mullins will be available to answer your questions and sign autographs. Free popsicles from Pleasant Pops. Free. At the Mount Pleasant Library, 3160 16th St. NW, entrance on Lamont St.,

Saturday June 23 at 1 PM, Author Talk: "Dinner in Camelot". Join author Joseph A. Esposito for a discussion of his book Dinner in Camelot: The Night America’s Greatest Scientist, Writers, and Scholars Partied at the Kennedy White House. The discussion will take place in the Peabody Room (3rd floor) of the Georgetown Library, 3260 R St. NW. This event is free and open to the public.

Saturday, June 23 from 5 -7 PM, Forest Hills Playground Free Summer Concert & Picnic in the Park - hosted by Friends of Forest Hills, presenting Crush Funk Brass! If you’ve seen Crush Funk perform their brand of jazz, R&B and funk at events in Van Ness, Tenleytown and around the District, you know you’re in for a treat. Get there around 5pm to grab the perfect picnic spot at the amphitheater (32nd and Brandywine Streets, by the tennis courts). The music starts at 5:30pm and the show will wrap up by 7pm. This event is BYOP - Bring Your Own Picnic. At the July and August summer concerts, food will be on sale, but this time, we hope you will pick up the perfect picnic at local businesses. Keep an eye on our Facebook page for weather alerts and other updates:

Saturday, June 23 from 7 - 10 PM, Van Ness Main Street Wine and Cheese Fundraiser. This is  a fun event with special wines and cheese selections by Calvert Woodley. The event will take place at the beautiful Park Van Ness building 4455 Conn. Ave. Silent auction, live jazz. Tickets $75 at: or at the door. Van Ness Main Street is a nonprofit organization supported by community members and local businesses.

Sunday June 24 from 11 AM - 5 PM, 51st State Fest. Join the DC Statehood Coalition, Students for DC Statehood, DC Vote, League of Women Voters DC, Stand Up! for Democracy in DC/Free DC, and Neighbors United for DC Statehood, along with your neighbors, kids and friends for a celebration of our 51st State to come! Activities will include live music from local DC artists, face painting, coloring and temporary tattoos for kids (and adults), trivia games, refreshments and information and updates on our #DCStatehood campaign in Congress (HR 1291 and S 1278). At the intersection of Mount Pleasant and Lamont Streets in Mount Pleasant. Free admission. At Lamont Park, 3258 Mt. Pleasant St NW,

Sunday, June 24 from 12 noon - 5 PM, Montgomery County Heritage Day. Sponsored by Heritage Montgomery, this free county-wide event highlights exhibits, live music, activities for children, and much more! Special events at Sandy Spring Museum will include: Museum Jam – a bluegrass music jam for beginners and professionals alike from 3–5pm Wonderroom Create Day - open for children ages 5-11: Visit the new dedicated space filled with experiential, hands-on activities that inspire creativity through design-based problem-solving challenges.  Activities encourage parent-child cooperation and collaboration - open from Noon–4pm. To participate, please register for the 10–11am session, or the 11am-12pm session. All are welcome to stop by for coffee and there is no charge to attend the event. At the Sandy Spring Museum, 17901 Bentley Rd., Sandy Spring, MD. Reserve your free spot:

Sunday, June 24 from 2 - 5 PM, The Shepherd Park Citizens Association 16th Annual Community Picnic. Food, music, kids’ activities, crafts, games, and presentation of community service awards. Free. At Lowell School, 1640 Kalmia Road, NW.

Sunday, June 24 from 4 - 7 PM, Uptown Shuffle Dance Party. Put on your dancing shoes and come to Cleveland Park's first ever outdoor dance party! Food from local restaurants, DJ-tunes and dancing, Zumba from instructors at City Fitness, raffle prizes, and more. Bring your beach chairs and some cash for food and drink, and get ready to have a good time. Free admission. In the parking lot of Sam’s Park’n’Shop at Ordway and Connecticut Ave.,

Monday, June 25, at 3:30 PM, Public Space and the West End Neighborhood Library: A Deeper Conversation. You are invited to join in a three-part, open, inclusive and meaningful community dialogue on public space and the West End community. Our third and final facilitator-led dialogue aims to cultivate or deepen insights and perspectives on public space. What is something you would like to see and do at the West End Neighborhood Library and community? You don’t need to have attended the previous two discussions to come to this one. In the conference room of the West End Neighborhood Library, 2301 L St. NW,

Monday, June 25 at 5 PM, Get Your Spell On! Come take a spelling test and win prizes! All grades welcome. Ask for Mr. Z. Free. At  the Bellevue (William O. Lockridge) Library, 115 Atlantic St. SW,

Tuesday, June 26, 11:30 AM - 7 PM, Fab Lab Pop-Up at NoMa. The Fab Lab at NoMa space was created out of two converted shipping containers, designed and built by BC Workshop and with exterior murals by Marc Pekala. The Lab will offer programs and classes using sewing machines, 3-D printers and a laser cutter. Learn more about the Labs here: Visit the Labs at 1150 First St. NE and sign up for classes. For more info, see

Tuesday, June 26 at 4 PM, Reptiles Alive! Enjoy an exciting live animal show. Professional wildlife presenters will entertain audiences with funny and fascinating facts while showcasing a colorful variety of exotic animals. A family program for children ages 5 and up. Free. At the Palisades Library, 4901 V Street, NW,

Tuesday June 26 at 7 PM, MPD Chief Peter Newsham will discuss crime and public safety at the Foggy Bottom Association. He will offer insights into his plans to improve the MPD, followed by Q&A with audience. Free. At the West End Public Library, 2301 L Street NW.

Tuesday, June 26 at 7 PM, Author Talk with Debut Novelist Tara Wilson Redd, who will discuss her debut novel, The Museum of Us, an intoxicating story that will leave you questioning what is real and why we escape into fantasy. Perfect for fans of Belzhar by Meg Wolitzer and Falling into Place by Amy Zhang. Free. At the Tenley-Friendship Library, 4450 Wisconsin Ave. NW.

Tuesday, June 26 at 1:30 PM, Iceland-Croatia World Cup Soccer Players Name Challenge. At 2 PM EDT, the Iceland-Croatia World Cup Soccer match will be shown on FS1. This player naming contest will take place a half-hour before the match airs. Can you name all the players of the Icelandic team AND all the players of the Croatian team...and pronounce each name correctly? Those who make it through that tough challenge will move on to the toughest test of all: SPELLING the names. Here’s a taste of what you’ll be taking on -- for the Croatian side: Dominik Livakovic; Sime Vrsaljko, Mario Mandzukic. And for the Icelandic team: Birkir Már Sævarsson; Samúel Kári Friðjónsson, Jón Daði Böðvarsson. Warning: Diacritical marks count!  You can study all the Icelandic players names here: and all the Croatian players here: To enter this event, you must first register and take a short on-line name quiz at Those who pass will be given ranking to enter the public competition to be held at a sports bar to be named after the quiz results are tabulated. Check for location.

Wednesday, June 27 from 12:30 - 1:30 PM, DC Vote Lunch and Learn with Tom Sherwood and Derek Musgrove. Join DC Vote for a conversation with Derek Musgrove, Associate Professor of History at UMBC and Tom Sherwood, analyst on WAMU 88.5 for an in-depth conversation on how issues of race and racism have impacted the District’s push for autonomy and Statehood throughout history. Tickets: $20 - includes lunch - At the HRC Equality Center, 1640 Rhode Island Ave NW.

Thursday, June 28 at 10 AM, Summer Carnival. Com enjoy the summer with us with mini golf, face-painting, bubbles and more. You'll also be able to sign up for our Summer Challenge if you haven't already, or check your progress and receive your first prize. All ages are welcome; children under age 9 should be accompanied by an adult. Free. At the Petworth Library, 4200 Kansas Ave. NW,

Thursday June 28 at 5:30 PM, Lecture: "Greetings from Hometown Washington, DC!" Join Jerry A. McCoy, special collections librarian at the DC Public Library, for a look at unusual vintage postcards of Washington, DC, and the stories behind the local sites depicted on the cards. The accompanying exhibition Greetings from Washington will be open before and after the talk. Refreshments to follow. Free; but reservations are required. Register online at or call 202-994-7394. At The George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum, 701 21st Street, NW    

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Still Life with Robin: The CP Library Is Back, Baby (and Boy, Is It Better Than Ever!)

by Peggy Robin

Coyaba Dance Theater at The Grand Opening
of the Cleveland Park Library 6-16-18
What a triumph! That’s not hype but the most accurate word I could bestow on the revamped, revised, reopened CP Library. It does every single thing that everyone on the gazillion-person-input commentariat asked of it. Except for maybe the rooftop pool. I did not see that…but then I never did make it up to the roof. Too crowded at the opening -- I simply could not manage to get everywhere -- and I’m sure I missed a few things. I did see: the two outdoor second-floor terraces; the ground-level patio; the phenomenal children’s library with its inviting “reading tree” and play area; the well-laid out information and check-out spaces up front; the four private study rooms upstairs; the capacious but dividable meeting rooms; the art on the walls by local artists (Rock Creek Park silkscreens by Lou Stovall – marvelous! -- and the Catherine Cate Coblentz glass panels, saved from the original library building) -- all bathed in natural sunlight from the spectacular building-length windows that filter out both glare and heat. Outside, on the Macomb Street side, there are outdoor benches, a rain garden, and at the far end, the rather tatty old concrete panda bear who used to sit out in front of the old building. He does look kind of confused about how he ended up around the corner.

Inside, I listened to the speakers: Mayor Bowser, CM Cheh, Council Chair Mendelson, CM Grosso, Library Director Reyes-Gavilan, who, each in turn, talked about the design (LEED certified, very environment-friendly!) and the community’s involvement from conception to today’s ribbon-cutting ceremony – and wonder of wonders – this all was pulled off without scandal or major mess-up on anyone’s part -- and ON TIME! Your tax dollars proudly and efficiently at work!
Ribbon Cutting - Photo by Alan Weinstein

The one thing I did NOT expect: An unruly crowd! There was such an overflow of people that the large front room was full to overflowing, with attendees packing the staircase going up to the second floor, where the balcony was also crammed with people. But those in the overflow areas and on the main floor far from the speakers could not hear what was being said, well-amplified though the speakers were. And not being able to hear, they chatted among themselves. And the many little children with their parents did what bored and restless children are likely to do; talk, fidget, cry, shriek. So this library-loving crowd of normally polite Cleveland Parkers made too much noise. They had to be scolded multiple times and told to HUSH! This is a LIBRARY after all!

Despite the noise, a good time was had by all. And from the solid look of the construction and the building’s sound design 
and versatility, I would say that this building will continue to provide good service for generations to come!

Still Life with Robin is published on The Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local on Saturdays.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Get Out! - The Events Column June 15-21, 2018

Cleveland Park Library
We wanted to share some events and activities that list members might be interested in. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 17,700+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv

Friday, June 15 from 10:00 AM – 4:30 PM, Science and Religion Festival at the Mansion on O Street - a celebration of the ways that science and religion interact and harmonize to create more meaning, understanding, and purpose in our world. This day-long festival offers guests the opportunity to explore compelling new stories and thought provoking ideas presented by writers, thinkers, skeptics, and believers from various disciplines and denominations in a series of events that will challenge and inspire. Come for an hour, come for the day. The Festival–set in the magical Mansion on O St (2020 O Street NW) near Dupont Circle—will present new ways to understand and appreciate our complicated world. Free. See the line-up of speakers, workshops, classes, films, and performers at   

Friday, June 15 from 7 - 9 PM, District of Pride: DC's Premier LGBTQ Performance Artists. Please join the Mayor’s Office of LGBTQ Affairs for the DISTRICT OF PRIDE – a performance celebration that will showcase and celebrate LBGTQ talent curated by DC’s LGBTQ millennials for the entire community, highlighting performances from the best talent that the community has to offer, and put together by Pretty Boi Drag, Sleepy Lee (Makers Lab), Mayor’s Office of LGBTQ Affairs, DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Capital Pride and the Office of Mayor Bowser. For more details on this free event, including complete line-up of LGBTQ artists and performers, and to RSVP (required), click here: on a first come, first served basis. This event will be ASL interpreted. To request a reasonable accommodation, please contact lgbtq @ dc dot gov. At the Lincoln Theatre, 1215 U St. NW.

Saturday, June 16 at 10:30 AM, Cleveland Park Library Grand Opening! Join Mayor Bowser, Council Chairman Mendelson, Councilmember Cheh, Councilmember Grosso, DC Public Library Executive Director Richard Reyes-Gavilan and members of the Library Board of Trustees for a ribbon cutting ceremony at 10:30 AM, followed by a day of family friendly festivities to celebrate the new Cleveland Park Library: Coyaba Dance Theater at 11 AM; Memory Lab Demo: Do you have memories you’d like to preserve? Bring photos, documents, negatives, slides, VHS and Hi-8 video to be assessed and digitized - from 11 AM - 2 PM; Building Tour at 12 noon; Maret High School Jazz Quintet at 12 noon; Story Time and Drop-in Craft Activity, throughout the day. At 3310 Connecticut Ave. NW,    

Saturday, June 16 from 12 - 3 PM, MPD-2D (PSA 203) Community Meet & Greet. Come out and meet the officers who serve your community! Giveaways, Balloons, Food, Fingerprinting & ID Kits for Children. Free. At 4200 Connecticut Avenue NW. Questions? Email Kyi Branch, Community Outreach Officer at kyi.branch @ dc dot gov.  

Saturday June 16 at 2 PM, More Than a Drum Percussion Ensemble: A Celebration of Music, Dance and the Spoken Word. Performance features four artists: Writer/Poet Bernardine 'Dine' Watson, Percussionist Abasi Johnson, Instrumentalist/Vocalist Wallace Edwards and Actor/Vocalist Kathy English Holt. For more information, contact the Takoma Park Library at (202) 576-7252. This is a Summer Challenge 2018 event sponsored by the Takoma Park Friends of the Library. Free. The Takoma Park Library is at 416 Cedar St. NW,    

Saturday June 16 at 2:30 PM,  Elizabeth Keckley Speaks: “My Life in Washington.” Join us at Southwest Library as we celebrate Juneteenth and the life of an important Washington dressmaker. See influential African-American Elizabeth Keckley brought to life. A little-known leader, Keckley was seamstress and confidante to Mary Todd Lincoln. This multimedia event will include a “now and then” slideshow of downtown Washington. Performer, Ranger and Tour Guide Karima Hurt is an accomplished reenactor for the National Parks Service. She has played a variety of roles for the Parks Service, including Sally Hemings and a WWII-era canteen girl. Free. At the Southwest Library in the Meeting Room, located on the library's lower level, 900 Wesley Place SW,    

Saturday, June 16 from 6 - 8 PM, The Turtle Park Jazz Project, presented by the Friends of Friendship ("Turtle") Park. First of three FREE concerts at the park will feature Taal Academy of Dance (6 - 6:45 PM) and CC Rider (7 - 8:45 PM). Variety of food and ice cream trucks on hand! Bring a blanket and a picnic and enjoy a summer evening at the park for adults and kids of all ages! Next concerts at Turtle park will be on Saturday, July 21st and Saturday, August 18th. Turtle Park is at Van Ness and 45th Streets NW. More info:   

Saturday, June 16 from 6 - 9 PM, Opening Reception for Four Summer Exhibitions at Katzen AU Museum. Mix and mingle with fellow museum patrons and meet the artists and curators behind the four new Summer exhibitions at the Opening Reception. One of the four shows is Latitude: The Washington Women's Arts Center 1975-1987. The Washington Women's Arts Center (WWAC) was created in 1975 as a non-profit organization to provide professional support and opportunities for women in the arts. This exhibition features the art of former WWAC members and exhibitors. showcasing 90+ works produced between the years 1975-1987, some of which are iconic of that time. The show brings back the energy, passion, and talent of members when the WWAC was, for many, "the only show in town." Recent works by WWAC artists will be featured in a slideshow and select interviews with members will appear in an accompanying documentary. The reception and the exhibition, which runs through August 12, are free and open to the public. The American University Museum at the Katzen Arts is on Ward Circle, just northeast of the Massachusetts Avenue. Opening Event Website:; Latitude Exhibition website: 

Sunday June 17 at 2 PM, Talk Story: "The Third Degree" with Scott Seligman. Anyone who has ever seen an episode of "Law and Order" can recite a suspect's "Miranda rights" - the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney, etc. But most people don't know that these rights had their roots in the case of a Chinese man accused of murdering three of his countrymen in Washington, DC in 1919. There was nothing quite like it: three foreign diplomats were killed in the city's Kalorama neighborhood, and no obvious motive or leads. The Washington police were baffled. But once they zeroed in on a suspect, they held him incommunicado until they had browbeaten him into a confession, which led to a seven-year journey through the legal system that drew in Warren G. Harding, William Howard Taft, Oliver Wendell Holmes, John W. Davis, and even J. Edgar Hoover, and culminated in a Supreme Court ruling that set the stage for Miranda v. Arizona many years later. Come to the I Street Conferencing Center this Sunday for a discussion on this extraordinary story, presented by author Scott Seligman. Sponsored by The 1882 Foundation, a forum airing issues important to the AAPI community - civil rights, immigration, race relations, social change, heritage, and Chinatowns. Free and open to the public. At the I Street Conferencing Center, 600 Massachusetts Avenue NW - enter through I St entrance between 6th & 7th Sts via entry to parking elevator to Level C. More info:    

Monday June 18 from  6 - 8 PM, A Shared History: Wessyngton to Washington. Don't miss the unusual opportunity to see a rarely exhibited letter from George Washington to his wife, Martha, which reports a major event in U.S. history. Then learn about Washington Old Hall, the 17th-century English manor house which is the ancestral home of George Washington. At Tudor Place Historic House and Garden, 1644 31st Street NW. Free - please RSVP:   

Tuesday June 19 at 4 PM, Summer Challenge: Library Scavenger Hunt at Palisades Library. Join the Summer Challenge. How well do you know your library? Get to know Dewey (it's like a secret code!): Melvil Dewey created the Dewey Decimal system over 135 years ago and it is still used in most public libraries. This program is for ages 6 - 12. The Palisades Library is at 4901 V Street, NW, 

Tuesday June 19 at 6:30 PM, The Future of Public Space: A Panel Discussion with SOM. Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP (SOM) will have a book panel discussion inspired by the book release of The Future of Public Space, which is part of the SOM Thinkers series and will focus on themes explored in the book. This panel discussion will help people better understand the histories, shifts and impacts of public space, as well as its future possibilities. SOM will provide a number of free copies for the first 20-30 guests. Note: This event is not to be confused with another upcoming library program called Public Space and the West End Library: A Deeper Conversation, which will be a facilitated dialogue and not a book panel discussion. Free: The West End Library is at 2301 L St. NW,   

Wednesday June 20 at 11 AM, Moving In/Moving Out: How Gentrification Affects Your Life - Part 2. Join us for coffee—and a deeper conversation about gentrification—and how it has affected your life. Enjoy this opportunity to gather with people who see and feel the effects of gentrification, and to share insights and ideas with the community. This is the second in a three-part series of dialogues; feel free to join us even if you missed the first part. The third part of the dialogue will take place on Thursday, June 28 at 11 AM. We will be meeting on the lower level conference room at the Mount Pleasant Library, 3160 16th St. NW, entrance on Lamont St,   

Wednesday June 20 at 7 PM, Book Hill Talks - Novel Narratives: Playing with Print in the Digital Age. Eleanor Shevlin, professor of English, graduate coordinator and director of the graduate certificate in publishing at West Chester University, will provide an analysis of recent trends in publishing. Free. In the Peabody Room of the Georgetown Library, 3260 R St. NW,    

Thursday June 21 at 5:43 AM EDT, Summer Solstice Ceremony for Druids and Druid Wanna-bes. This event will start promptly at dawn -- so locate your nearest standing circle of stones and be sure to arrive in time to catch the sun’s rays beaming through the gap in the stones when the  ritual chanting and dancing will commence. Please bring your own flower garlands. No other clothing allowed. If you have been properly initiated, you will not need further instructions. If you have not been properly initiated, register here - - to receive your How-to-Druid manual and your FREE sacrificial totems. For more on the summer solstice, see: and

Thursday, June 21 at 6:30 PM, What Does it Mean to Be a Washingtonian? Throughout this city's history, the definition of what it means to be a Washingtonian has changed and continues to change. Join us for the second of a three-part structured community conversation and learn more about the power of dialogue as we discuss this question. We will exchange ideas together and hear from different voices in the community. Light refreshments will be provided. [The first part took place on June 14; the third part will take place on June 28 at 6:30 PM] All are welcome. Free. At the Petworth Library, 4200 Kansas Ave. NW,