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FREE TICKETS: DC Emancipation Day 150th Anniversary Great Debate

This Saturday is the Emancipation Day 150th Anniversary Great Debate. Held at the historic Lincoln Theatre, the event is a celebration of the freeing of Slaves in Washington, DC. Nine months before the Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln freed the slaves in Washington DC, making the District home to the first freed slaves.


There will be four panelests, the two confirmed are:

  • Reverend Al Sharpton, Civil Rights Leader/Pastor/Radio & Television host
  • Michael Eric Dyson, Georgetown Professor

The event is free and open to the public, but you must register at

This promises to be a fantastic event. Meet me there?


Lots and lots to do this month – Upcoming activities

Tis the season to socialize and get out and enjoy the year end. The DC Department of Recreation (DPR) has published a list of plenty to do this month across the city. See you around town!

December 7, 2011
Holiday Jingle Bells Senior Luncheon Cruise (Odyssey Cruise)
600 Water Street, SW
Time: 10am – 2pm
Ages: 55 and up
Seniors will enjoy variety of music, a lovely buffet style lunch, live musical show featuring the cruise ship staff while cruising down the Potomac River. For more information, call Jennifer Hamilton at (202) 664-7153.


December 13, 2011
ANC Community Meeting
SE Tennis and Learning Center, 701 Mississippi Avenue, SE
Time: 2pm – 5pm
All Ages
ANC Community Meeting. For more information, call Jeri Ingram at (202) 645-6242,

December 14, 2011
Sew and Know Christmas Bazaar at the Wilson Building
Pepco Edison Place Art Gallery, 702 8th Street
12:00 noon – 5:00 pm
All Ages
Sew and Know Christmas Bazaar at the Pepco Edison Place Art Gallery. For more information, call Jeri Ingram at (202) 645-6242.

December 15, 2011
SETLC Christmas Party
Southeast Tennis and Learning Center, 701 Mississippi Avenue, SE
Time: 6pm – 10pm
All Ages
For more information, call Jeri Ingram at (202) 645-6242.

December 17, 2011
Dream Girls Mentoring Program
SE Tennis and Learning Center, 701 Mississippi Avenue, SE
Time: 9am – 3pm
Ages: 6 -12
Dream Girls Mentoring Program. For more information, call Jeri Ingram (202) 645-6242 .


November 28th – December 22nd, 2011
Annual Coat Drive
Guy Mason Recreation Center, 3600 Calvert Street, NW
Time: 9:30am – 9pm
All Ages
Staff will collect winter coats from the community for needy individuals. For more information, call (202) 727-7736.

December 7, 2011
Christmas Party / Fashion Show
North Michigan Park Recreation Center, 1333 Emerson Street, NE
Time: 7pm – 9pm
All Ages
The community will come together in a fun filled atmosphere to enjoy a Christmas party & fasion show. Christmas carols will be sung while enjoying the spirit of the holiday season. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call Joseph Clark, Site Manager at (202) 541-3522.

December 9, 2011
Cinema Cafe
Harry Thomas Sr. Community Service Center, 1743 Lincoln Road, NE
Time: 5:30pm – 7:30pm
Ages: 12 – 18
The teens of Harry Thomas will watch a movie and discuss how the movie relate to there life. For more information, call Tameka Borges, Recreation Specialist at (202) 576-6404/5642.

December 10, 2011
Picture with Santa
Stead Recreation Center, 1625 P Street, NW
Time: 12pm – 2pm
Ages: 12 and under
Participants will be able to take a picture with Santa and enjoy refreshments. For more information, call Vincent E. Hill at (202) 673-4465.

December 10, 2011
Kwanza Celebration
Brentwood Recreation Center, 2311 14th Street, NE
Time: 10am – 2pm
All Ages
The community will have an opportunity to learn about the meeting of the holiday; along with food, prizes, and music. For more information, call Lorenzo Carter, Site Manager at (202) 576-6667.

December 11, 2011
Craft Exhibit
Guy Mason Recreation Center, 3600 Calvert Street, NW
Time: 11am – 4pm
All Ages
Guy Mason Instructors and students will exhibit the works they made in their classes.

December 13, 2011
Annual Holiday Open House and Tree Lighting Ceremony
Chevy Chase Community Center, 5601 Connecticut Avenue, NW
All Ages
Time: 7am – 9pm
Chevy Chase Community Center Annual holiday open house will highlight music, dance, juggling performances and so much more! The community will also come together and bring an ornament to decorate the Ward 3 Community holiday tree. There will be carolers singing and hot chocolate served. For more information, call Ralph Wright (202) 282-2204.

December 15, 2011
Santa’s Secret Gift Shop
Joseph Cole Recreation Center, 1299 Neal Street, NE
Time: 5pm – 6:30pm
Ages: 12 and under
The participants will pick out a gift for an adult in their household and enjoy light refreshments. For more information, call Zenobia Moton at (200 442-9262.

December 15, 2011
Holiday Celebration and Secret Santa Gift Exchange
Therapeutic Recreation Center, 3030 G Street, SE
Time: 11am – 2pm
Ages: Adults with Special Needs
Individuals will celebrate the holiday season with music, dancing, gift exchange and Pot Luck Luncheon. For more information, call Priscilla Jones, CTRS at (202) 698-1794.

December 16, 2011
2nd Annual Holiday Celebration, Variety Show and Awards Ceremony
Fort Davis Recreation Center 1400 41st street SE
Time: 6:30pm – 8pm
All Ages
Youth will receive awards for the various programs and activities in which they have participated, and will star in a variety show (singing, dancing, poems) for their parents and community residents. For more information, call Elijah Fagan, Site Manager at (202) 645-9212.

December 16, 2011
Holiday Crafts
Volta Park Recreation Center, 3400 Volta Place, NW
Time: 3:30pm – 5:30pm
Ages: 4 – 12
Participants will construct and design a varriety of holiday crafts of their likeing.Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call Shirley Debrow at (202) 645-5668.

December 16, 2011
Kennedy’s Winter Wonderland
Kennedy Recreation Center, 1401 7th Street, NW
Time: 6pm – 8pm
Kennedy’s Recreation Staff will bring youth from the surrounding community together to celebrate a day of giving. Joy and laughter fill the air as children take pictures with Santa. Food will be served. For more information, call Rochelle Bradshaw at (202) 671-4794.

December 17, 2011
Deanwood Children Christmas Party
Deanwood Recreation Center, 1350 49th Street, NE
Time: 12pm – 3pm
Ages: 15 and under
Children will participate in Christmas tree decorating, picture with Santa, fun family games, food and more. Each participant will receive a gift. For more information, call Orvin Wright at (202) 671-3077.

December 19, 2011
After School Access Christmas Party Card Making to deliver to the Washington Senior Home
Macomb Recreation Center, 3409 Macomb Street, NW
Time: 5pm – 6:30pm
Ages: 6-12
Afternoon Access Program participants will make holiday cards for display and deliver to the Washington Senior Home. Refreshments will be served. For more information, call Cleveland Dent (202) 282-2199.

December 21, 2011
Celebrating You and Me Holiday Crafts Trimming Our Community Tree
Kalorama Recreation Center, 1875 Columbia Road, NW
Time: 6pm – 8pm
The Staff in conjunction with the Funds of Kalorama and the community will come together in celebration of the Holiday Season. For more information, call John Borges at (202) 673-7606.

December 21, 2011
Holiday Crafts & Trim a tree
Kalorama Recreation Center, 1875-Columbia Road, NW
Time: 6pm – 8pm
All Ages
The Kalorama community will come together and decorate the Christmas tree and sing Holiday songs. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call John Borges, Site Manager at (202) 673-7606.

December 21, 2011
Picture with Santa
Brentwood Recreation Center, 2311 14th Street, NE
Time: 6pm – 8pm
All Ages
The children of Brentwood will have an opportunity to take a picture with Santa, play games, and receive light refreshments. For more information, call Lorenzo Carter, Site Manager at (202) 576-6667.

December 21,2011
Toy give away to hospital for the sick
Children’s National Medical Center, N.W.
Time: 11am – 3pm
All Ages
Douglass; Ft.Stanton; Ft.Greble jazzy girls will provide toys to the kids at the National Medical Center. For more information, call Barbara Jones, Margie Robinson, Val Arnold at (202) 645-3980.

December 21, 2011
Arts & Craft Christmas Jamboree
Rosedale Recreation Center (Gibbs Elem. School), 500 19th Street, NE
Time: 6:30pm – 8pm
All Ages
Staff and youth will create Christmas ornaments including decorations. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call Brian Williams, Site Manager at (202) 258-6149.

December 21, 2011
Holiday Crafts
Marie Reed Recreation Center, 2200 Champlain St. NW
Time: 4pm – 6pm
All Ages
Participants will come together to make Christmas Cards, and view Christmas Tree at Kalorama at 7pm. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call Julia Joel, Acting Site Manager at (202) 673-7768.

December 21, 2011
Christmas Dinner & Gift Exchange
Watkins Recreation Center, 420 12th Street, SE
Time: 5pm – 8pm
Ages: 13 and under
In celebration of the Christmas, kids will enjoy dance contest and food will be served. For more information, call Brian Cobbs at (202) 724-4468.

December 23, 2011
Holiday Community Service giving
Hamilton Recreation Center, 1340 Hamilton Street, NW
Time: 12:30pm – 6:30pm
Ages: 6 – 18
Participants will spread holiday cheer by passing out baskets to needy families in the community. For more information, call Nadine Bell, Recreation Specialist at (202) 541-1299.

December 29, 2011
Just G.I.R.L.S. Holiday Fun on Ice
Silver Spring Ice Skating at Veterans Plaza, 8523 Fenton Street Silver Spring, MD 20910
Time: 1pm – 6pm
Ages: 6 – 18
The Girls of Wards 5 & 6 will enjoy a day of fun on the ice and socialize with their peers and coordinators at a restaurant. For more information, call Tameka Borges, Ward Coordinator at (202) 576-6404/5642.

For information on DPR programs and events visit the website, DPR.DC.GOV, or follow DPR on Twitter, @DCDPR.

Community Caroling today 4:00pm!

Come out and bring the family! at 4:oopm today, Sunday December 4, 2011, meet at IHOP on Alabama Ave. and come with warm vocal chords. Caroling will take place up Alabama Ave. to the Henson Ridge playground on Tobias & Fredrick Douglas Pl. Hot drinks and cookies will be served.

Come and participate in the holiday spirit!


DHCD Real Estate Auction Highlight Reel (VIDEO)

The DHCD Real Estate Auction, hosted by Alex Cooper Auctioneers, was a very interesting experience (see earlier POST for the announcement). This was my first live auction and I must say the auctioneer had a command of the open ascending bid auction and the emotions of the audience. He seemed to know just when to count the bid down (“going once, twice..”) and when to keep calling (“150 bid now 60?”) to push the dollar amount up. Kudos to Alex Cooper.

Eleven properties were advertised for auction and ten were actually sold.  I unfortunately didn’t take note of each buildings closing price, but  here are the sold values I did capture.  Assessed values shown are from the DC Taxpayer Service Center website.

*Table for reference only. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Not an official record of winning bid prices. Not intended for use in purchase, sale or assessment decisions or for use in projecting appreciating or declining markets.

A few interesting stipulations related to the post-purchase procedure jumped out at me:

  1. A 5% premium is added to the “hammer” price.
  2. Within 60 days after the auction,  winners must provide proof of financing to cover both acquisition and development costs. (I’m curious to know what happens if you can’t.)
  3.  DCRA grants a 180 day grace period where auctioned properties are subject to their original tax code – to allow time to gain building permits.
  4. All auction properties must be fully developed within 18 months of closing.
  5. Developer must certify that improvements are designed in accordance with applicable laws related to persons with disabilities.

Congratulations to the winning bidders and I look forward to seeing the re-developed properties!

DC Real Estate Auction Tomorrow – Only Open to CBE’s & Non Profits

Are you a Certified Business Enterprise (CBE) in the District of Columbia? Tomorrow, 11/10/11 DC is auctioning 11 properties and the auction is only open to CBE and Non Profit entities. This is a fantastic opportunity to purchase real estate at a discounted price. If you’re business isn’t certified, events like this are reason enough to get certified (in my opinion).Visit Alex Cooper Auctions for details on attendance and the bidding process.

Hope to see you there!


StepAfrika is Magnificent!

I had the opportunity to attend a performance of StepAfrika at the Atlas theatre in NE DC. If you ever have the opportunity to go – absolutely go see this show. As a part of a prestigious African American Greek Letter organization, I learned so very much. I had no idea that the tradition of stepping was so deeply rooted in black heritage, culture and such a big part of the black experience.

The most powerful part of the show to me was “they took our drums away.” That phrase has stuck in my head the past few days and will be there well into the future I’m sure.

Men Against Breast Cancer Awards Reception (VIDEO)

Last night was the 9th annual “Think Pink and Blue” Awards Reception and it was marvelous. Men Against Breast Cancer was founded by Marc Heyison. The organization is the only national non-profit organization designed to provide targeted support services to educate and empower men to be effective caregivers when breast cancer strikes a female loved one; as well as, target and mobilize men to be active participants in the fight to eradicate breast cancer as a life threatening disease.

The event was held at the Macy’s downtown and it was a fantastic showing. Lots of people came out to support the cause and contribute to furthering their mission. There were three award recipients this year:

Brian Mitchell, Recipient of the Gloria Heyison Inspiration Award

Steve Buckhantz, Recipient of the Yetta Rosenberg Humanitarian Award

Kimberly Higginbotham, Recipient of the Rosemary Williams Courage Award

Talke a look at a video recap of the fashion show.