by September 30, 2010 at 8:44 pm 1,928 6 Comments

Charlie's Place 17th Street Dog Park Dupont Circle

Saturday, Oct. 2: Blessing of the Animals at 17th Street Dog Park, 8 to 9:30 am. The mini-walk benefits Charlie’s Place for the homeless. (Greater Dupont Homeless Project)

What: Blessing of the animals, conducted by Rev Emily Guthrie of St Margaret’s Episcopal Church.

When: This Saturday morning, October 2nd, from 8 to 9:30 am.

Where: 17th Street Dog Park at 17th and S Streets NW (outside fence by tables and benches). Dogs and people of all faiths are invited to take part in the traditional blessing of the animals. Dogs will receive medals of St Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals (Feast Day is this weekend). Pets will also receive treats, including doggie ice cream or baked goods. Blessing ceremonies will be brief with one every 20 minutes. Coffee and pastries for the humans.

Why: In addition to the blessing of our pets, this event will feature a mini-walk around the Dog Park to help raise funds for Charlie’s Place, the homeless outreach program at St Margaret’s Church (1830 Connecticut Avenue NW). Charlie’s Place offers hot meals and counseling, and has placed dozens of homeless people in housing and jobs, getting them off of the streets. This event will be in conjunction with the Fannie Mae March for the Homeless.

About the Mini-Walk: After each blessing ceremony, participants will be invited to take a walk around the block and make a donation to Charlie’s Place. This will qualify this as a “mini-walk” according to the Fannie Mae Foundation, and make the group eligible for matching funds. (Give what you wish, but for $25 you get a T-shirt). Last year, Charlie’s Place raised more than 40% of its total budget ($58,000 out of $120,000+) from a mini-walk and the  November March for the Homeless. Credit cards, checks and cash accepted.

One but Not the Other? You may do the blessing without the walk or the walk without the blessing.

by September 30, 2010 at 7:55 pm 1,432 0

Luis Gomez Photos Borderstan dc theaters

Get the listing of shows at local theaters. (Luis Gomez Photos)

You have four choices this weekend at theaters in the Dupont-Logan-U Street area:

  • Ending this weekend at the Source Theater on 14th Street is a production by The In Series. The theater group is billing the show as “a double bill of American ‘pocket’ opera: Leonard Bernstein’s Trouble In Tahiti and William Bolcom and Arnold Weinstein’s Casino Paradise.” The double production begins at 8 pm and runs through this Saturday, October 2.
  • Something You Did at Theater J ends this weekend with the final performance this Sunday at 8 pm. Of the show, Theater J says, “A stellar student from a good family, Alison Moulton is serving her 30th year behind bars for an anti-war bombing that resulted in the death of a police officer. Now petitioning for parole…” Theater J is at 16th and Q NW in the DC Jewish Community Center.

Get full details below the fold for these shows plus info about new shows opening this fall at Church Street Theater and the Lincoln Theatre.


by September 30, 2010 at 12:37 am 2,658 3 Comments

From Alejandra Owens at One Bite At A Time

Bistro Du Coin Connecticut Avenue NW Dupont Circle Alejandra Owens

Bistrot Du Coin at 1738 Connecticut Avenue NW. (Alejandra Owens)

I mean, who hasn’t been to Bistrot Du Coin? If you’ve lived in the Dupont Circle area for more than six months, someone has either taken you or you’ve been drawn in by their infamous Bastille Day party or the annual Beaujolais Nouveau festival.

On Summer nights the front windows are thrown  open, giving passersby a peek into their expansive and warmly-lit dining room. On winter nights you’ll find a mixed crowd of young women in heels, international transplants and and chic 20-somethings wrapped in coats smoking their cigarettes.

No matter the event, the day, the time of year it seems that Bistrot Du Coin has worked its way into this Duponters heart. So, tell me, what’s your Bistro story?

Where Am I Going? 1738 Connecticut Avene NW (spitting distance from Connecticut & Florida Avenues).

When Am I Going? Monday to Wednesday, 11:30 am to midnight; Thursday and Friday, 11:30 am to 1 am;  Saturday, 11 am to 1 am; and Sunday, 11 am to midnight.

What’s the Paycheck Pain? Beef tenderloin might run you $26 but depending on what you’re craving there’s something at every price point on the menu. A pot of mussels (my current must-have dinner) run around $18. Tartines are around $7 for a half, $12 for a whole. There’s salads, desserts, pan-seared fish and more. Really, you can spend about as much as you want here and still eat very well.

Say What?: A place for friends to gather, or a place to take a third date–it’s a fun environment that’s unpretentious and makes you feel at ease. So speak up, laugh loud, lean back in your chair and relax.

What Will You Be Eating? Think of a French dish… Bistrot Du Coin will serve it.

by September 30, 2010 at 12:10 am 4,365 8 Comments

Hank's Oyster Bar Dupont Circle Citizens Association 17th Street NW

1624 Q Street NW: Hank’s Oyster Bar wants to expand into the empty space on the east side of the restaurant. A group of residents are protesting the expansion. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Tom Hay

Wednesday morning’s status hearing on the Hank’s Oyster Bar expansion effort shined a light on how drawn out and complex the ABRA protest process can be–that’s Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration in DC-speak.

The hearing before the The ABRA’s Alcoholic Beverage Control Board (ABC) was on the expansion/substantial change that chef-owner Jamie Leeds is seeking for Hank’s, her popular 17th and Q restaurant.

Wednesday’s status hearing should not be confused with the protest concerning Leeds’s request to vacate the voluntary agreement (V.A.) that the restaurant has been operating under since Hank’s opened in 2005. The V.A. protest is the second Hank’s case before ABRA.

ABC Board chairman Charles Brodsky opened the case by asking the parties to identify themselves. Jamie Leeds and her attorney, Andrew Kline were present along with David Mallof, representing the signatories to the expansion protest, and his attorney, Mike Hibey. Also seated at the table was Robin Diener, president of the Dupont Circle Citizens Association (DCCA).


by September 28, 2010 at 10:31 pm 1,590 0

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From Tom Hay

More Wine and Shorter Lines on P Street

The Logan Circle Whole Foods in the 1400 block of P Street NW announced that the renovation and expansion of the 10 year old store which we reported on in June is nearly complete.   There will be an unveiling of the new mezzanine level cafe on October 1. Check out the store calendar for details on the kickoff which includes entertainment, refreshments and giveaways.

If you’ve been to the store in the last few weeks you may have noticed the expansion of the wine department and addition of a bunch of express checkout lanes along the P Street window wall. While I welcome shorter lines at the grocery store, the new checkout system feels a bit like a DMV queue. Plus it eliminates the window side seating which was great for people watching.

Overall the system is working and I think the changes will be a big hit, especially with football season underway and the holidays quickly approaching.

Tunnel… But No Love

The Washington City Paper Housing Complex Blog reported that construction is set to begin in late October on a gigantic 1,165-room Marriott Marquis at the Northwest corner of 9th and Massachusetts NW.

The saga of building of a large hotel in close proximity to the DC Convention Center has dragged on for years, and while the legal battles have ended, not everyone is happy. The estimated 42-month-long construction is sure to disrupt residents and business owners.

Plans call for the hotel to have several restaurants, cafes and a tunnel under 9th Street.  Not good news for cafes and galleries north of the site who had hoped for increased foot traffic. The hotel will also be within the boundaries of the Arts District which is currently undertaking a branding and marketing effort.

Jogger Gets a Lesson in Safe Sex

Interesting Washington Post opinion piece by a female jogger whose run through the portion of Rock Creek Park known as P Street Beach became her introduction to the notorious hookup spot. After finding the area littered with condoms and condom wrappers, the writer contacted various law enforcement agencies for comment. Seems that patrolling of the area is somewhat lax because of jurisdictional issues between US Park Police and DC Police.

Proposed Metrobus Changes Would Create U Street-Dupont Bus Link

From Greater Greater Washington are some details on proposed changes to the 90-92-93 Metrobus lines that run from the Anancostia Station, along U Street NW, through Adams Morgan ending at the Ellington Bridge on Calvert Street. The recommendations by DDOT and WMATA call for the line to instead continue straight on westbound U Street to Florida Avenue NW, then left on Connecticut, continuing south toward Dupont Circle. The proposed change would create a direct bus link from the U Street Corridor to Dupont Circle.

by September 28, 2010 at 10:02 pm 4,226 0

Mary Burgan Borderstan Movie Fan

Mary Burgan is the Borderstan Movie Fan.

Mary the Borderstan Movie Fan’s column on movies runs every two weeks. Mary Burgan is a retired professor of English and association executive. Her previous reviews are listed at the end of this post.

Gordon Gekko was a terrific dresser in the Oliver Stone’s first Wall Street (1987), and he doesn’t let the admirers of his sartorial splendor down in the 2010 sequel, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, which was released Friday. No, he doesn’t wear the splendid suspenders that he turned into all the rage in the late ’80s. But, the follow-up film shows him on a shopping spree in London.

Tailors caress Gekko’s now appropriately bulky shoulders with silky woolen jackets, fit his feet with gleaming leathers–“I’ll take four of those,” he says–and ply him with shirts.

It’s all done with an abundance that hasn’t been so celebrated since F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby in 1925. There Daisy Buchanan comments, “It makes me sad because I’ve never seen such–such beautiful shirts before.”

In Wall Street I (as I refer to the 1987 original), as in Gatsby, everyone understands that clothes do not make the man. That understanding is never clear in Wall Street II (as I call the newly released follow-up). There’s a lot to like in the current film: the updating of the Manhattan skyline it more breathtaking, its crowds are more anxiously hurried, and its array of computer screens more stupefying than in the first film.

Moral Clarity Lacking in Wall Street II

What the remake lacks is the moral clarity that drove the first Wall Street. Without that moral clarity, the second Wall Street is kind of a mess, and the messiness shows up in the plot and the casting.

In the plot, the drive is to rehabilitate the Gordon Gekko character. That is to be achieved by the influence of his estranged daughter, played winningly by Carey Mulligan. But she doesn’t have much to work with in her fiancée, a callow youth, played by Shia LaBeouf.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have wasted a vacant hour watching the end of Terminator: Revenge of the Fallen on HBO, but I wanted to get a view of the new teen heart throb. There he played an earnest youth, coping with the monsters by looking brave. LaBeouf seems to be playing the same role as Jake Moore in Wall Street II, but earnestness is not enough to counter the temptations that come with all that money.

Father Figures

One way to get a sense of the problem for the young hero in the latest film is to compare the father figures in each. The callow Bud Fox (Charlie Sheen) in the first film has a wise and commanding mentor in his father, Carl Fox (Martin Sheen). This father sets the values in the film by bringing in the world of real work into the world of fast-talkers who buy and sell stocks on the inspiration of a whisper. Carl Fox is a counter weight to the mesmerizing Gordon Gekko.

In the sequel there is no such counter weight. Young Jake Moore has been mentored by a figure in his investment banking firm named Louis Zabel, played very well by Frank Langella, but unlike the father in the first Wall Street, Langella is deep into the game, and gives his protégé a check for 1.5 million as a sign of his approval. That gift floats in the film without much comment on its lavishness, except that it buys a nice engagement ring for Gekko’s daughter.

But then, talk about lavish, there is the father of it all–Gordon Gekko. still played to the swaggering hilt by Michael Douglas. He and Langella are two of the reasons to see the movie, and so is Susan Sarandon, though she has only a few brief scenes.

For the rest, there are only the lagging plot, the uninteresting young protagonist, and the equivocation about the attractions of greed–recorded with glittering fascination in brilliant color.

The American Myth

I suppose I could sum up the whole thing, in both the first and second Wall Streets, as the perennial American myth. Nick Carraway described it best: “Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that’s no matter–to-morrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther… And one fine morning…” [You add the last line.]*

As for me, I’d rather go back and visit the town of Bedford Falls, New York, in It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) any old day than sit through the New York of Wall Street II another time. It’s reassuring to watch George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) fight against the mean old banker, Henry Potter (Lionel Barrymore) and to share the film’s understanding that greed really is bad.

*Okay, so here’s the line: “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”

Other Reviews by The Borderstan Movie Fan

by September 28, 2010 at 12:56 pm 2,669 2 Comments

Click on the photo above to see images of the 11 & U Streets NW Shooting (Luis Gomez Photos)

Update at 9:30 am Wednesday: Dcist reports that police are seeking leads on a car in yesterday’s shooting: “Police are still looking for a white 2001 Buick with D.C. tags which was around U Street or leaving the area yesterday, just before or after the shooting at 12:30 p.m. Those with information about that car should call police at 202-727-9099, text at 50411, or leave a tip anonymously at 1-888-919-CRIME. The investigation is still open and police are looking for at least one other person.” ###

Update at 8:45 am Wednesday: The Washington Post reports that a 21-year-old man was taken into custody Thursday evening in connection with the shooting at 11th and U Streets yesterday; no word yet on whether he has been charged. ###

Update at 6 am Wednesday: It is still unclear whether Jamal Coates died from bullet wounds or the car crash… the incident appears to be gang related… reports that police are “searching for a light-colored, older model Crown Victoria as part of their investigation and encouraged anyone who sees one to alert them.” ###

Update at 10:35 pm Tuesday: reports that 21-year-old Jamal Coates died today after being shot at 11th and U Streets NW. MPD confirmed to Borderstan around 2:25 pm that two people were shot and one person is dead in the U Street shooting and auto accident that occurred around 12:30 pm today. Coates was part of a funeral procession for 24-year-old Ashley McRae. The Metro entrance at 13th and U NW is closed. It is believed the incident may be gang related. ###


U Street NW MPD dc gun crime

One man died today in the 11th and U Street NW shooting. (Luis Gomez Photos) is reporting a shooting at 11th and U Streets NW that occurred during a funeral procession at around 12:30 pm. A car flipped over in U Street and several people were seen exiting the car. Read the full story at

The first report came via a police alert, which reported the shooting as happening at 13th and U Streets NW.


by September 27, 2010 at 10:54 pm 1,701 1 Comment

AIDS Walk Washington

The 2010 AIDS Walk Washington is Saturday, Oct. 2. (Whitman Walker Clinic)

Yep, Lynda Carter will serve as Grand Marshal this Saturday of the 24th annual AIDS Walk Washington. The star of that fab ’70s TV show, Wonder Woman, is this year’s celebrity walk marshal.

For our younger readers, Wikipedia notes that the show “starred Lynda Carter as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman and Lyle Waggoner as Steve Trevor.” Wonder Woman ran three seasons, 1976 to 1979, on ABC. Here area a couple of YouTube clips (this one has the “spin” transformation). And, she could deflect bullets!

Her appearance is for a very good cause: The 5K AIDS Walk Washington provides funds for HIV services and treatment at Whitman Walker Clinic, a non-profit health care provider. Its main office is here in our neighborhood, at 14th and R NW, with a satellite office in Southeast DC. An estimated 3% of DC’s population is living with HIV–approximately 18,000 people.

The AIDS Walk begins and ends this Saturday, October 2, at Freedom Plaza (14th and Pennsylvania NW). Kick off time for the walk is 9:15 am for the 5K course;the route map is available in PDF. Full details below.

Three Ways to Help

You can support Whitman Walker and the AIDS Walk Washington in one of three ways:

AIDS Walk Information

  • What: 24th annual AIDS Walk Washington to benefit HIV/AIDS services of Whitman-Walker Clinic. The 5K walk and run will begin and end at Freedom Plaza, follow Pennsylvania Avenue and cross the National Mall.
  • Who: Walk Grand Marshal Lynda Carter; DC elected officials; Whitman-Walker Clinic Executive Director Don Blanchon; and thousands of walkers and volunteers from across the DC metropolitan area. NBC4 Anchor Craig Melvin will emcee. The Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington will perform the national anthem. Local recording artist Peter Fox will perform the world live debut of his single “Change the World” to benefit AIDS Walk. The National Danish Performance Team and Kaution Dance Kru will perform in the post-Walk program.
  • Why: To raise funds for Whitman-Walker Clinic and the direct services it provides to people affected by HIV/AIDS.
  • Where: Walk begins and ends at Freedom Plaza, 14th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, NW.
  • When: Opening ceremony begins at 8:15 am. The 5K timed run starts at 9:00 am. The walk steps off at 9:15 am.
  • Background: More than three percent of the DC population is living with HIV. One in every seven gay or bisexual men in DC is living with HIV. To date, more than 4,000 individuals have registered to participate. Whitman-Walker Clinic’s annual Courage Award will be presented as part of the pre-Walk ceremony. The award is presented to individuals who have displayed strength and bravery while living with HIV/AIDS.

by September 27, 2010 at 7:56 pm 2,068 3 Comments

Safeway 17th Street NW

The Safeway at 17th and Corcoran NW. Another change is the addition of the Capital Bikeshare station in front of the store. (Luis Gomez Photos)

Safeway 17th Street NW

Temporary hours are 6 am to 10 pm. at the 17th Street Safeway. (Luis Gomez Photos)

Safeway on 17th Street NW is getting another renovation–and a 10 pm closing time from now until November.

Sources say that with the closing of the Express Safeway on 19th Street a couple of months ago, the store has seen its customer base grow– and demand better and different products. Shelves are being moved and certain products relocated.

But, here’s the big news:

  • The produce section will expand.
  • The deli area will have a hot-food bar.
  • There will be self checkout lanes.

Capital Bikeshare Station at Store

A new addition to the sidewalk area in front of the 17th Street Safeway is the Capital Bikeshare station. The program rolled out across the DC metro area on September 20.

by September 27, 2010 at 4:55 pm 2,422 6 Comments

lost dog Belgian Shepherd

Large black dog found Monday afternoon, 1700 block of Willard Street NW.

Evening Update: Good news! Aries was reunited with his human family this evening, according to Marisa, his rescuer.

We’re dog lovers here at Borderstan as longtime readers know. Losing your dog or cat is a pet owner’s worst nightmare, so we run notices of lost pets when possible.

Around 1 pm today, area resident Marissa was followed home by a large black dog. He found Marissa on the 1700 block of Willard Street NW and she has him safe and sound at her house in the vicinity of 16th and U NW.

Marissa says he looks a great deal like a Belgian Shepherd or Belgian Shepherd mix. The dog has a long black coat, pointy ears, a long tail and weighs an estimated 80 pounds. Marissa says he is good natured and friendly. The dog is wearing a chain-choke, but has no identifying tags. He is not microchipped–she has already had him scanned for a chip.

If you have any information or leads, please call Marisa.

by September 26, 2010 at 4:56 pm 3,292 0

17th Street Festival Dupont Circle Luis Gomez Photos

Click on the image to see photos from Saturday’s 17th Street Festival. (Luis Gomez Photos)

Click on the collage above to see the slide show on Flickr from the 17th Street Festival on Saturday.

Warm weather, sunshine and several thousand attendees were part of the first annual 17th Street Festival in east Dupont. Crowds were steady through the afternoon on 17th Street NW between P Street and Riggs Place NW. The Festival was conceived as a way of celebrating the end of construction work on the 17th Streetscape project.

The Festival included almost 60 local artists, Dupont Circle area businesses, a Pet Zone, numerous kids’ activities, a beer garden at JR’s Bar and Grill and a live music stage with several performances throughout the afternoon. Local politicians were on hand as well–Council Chairman Vincent Gray (and Democratic mayoral nominee), Councilmembers David Catania (I-At Large), Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) and Phil Mendelson (D-At Large), in addition to many of the commissioners from Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B-Dupont. ANC 2B was one of the lead sponsoring organizations.

Festival lead coordinator was Lee Granados of Ross School PTA:

“The 17th Street Arts Committee would like to thank the businesses and residents for coming together for a tremendous day of celebration and festivities. Having pulled this together in less than two months on a zero budget says a lot about the individuals and businesses dedication to making this happen. Special thanks goes to Ross Elementary Parents and Staff, the ANC 2B members and the Dupont Circle Citizens Association. Councilmembers Evans, Gray, Mendelson and Catania deserve a big thanks for their contributions and support. And most sincere thank you to George Washington University graduate students Stephen Rutgers and Editra Allen for bringing in their skills and expertise in when we needed them most. We look forward to planning an even more successful event next year!”

Frank Kameny Honored

Veteran LGBT activist Frank Kameny was honored on stage. Kameny was one of the pioneers in the fight for gay rights in the United States and the 1700 block of 17th Street was co-named Frank Kameny Way in his honor in June.

About the Festival

The 17th Street Festival (also on Facebook) was organized by the  Ross Elementary School PTA, Historic Dupont Main Streets project  and the Dupont Circle Citizens Association (DCCA). Festival organizers sold sponsorships to individuals, businesses and organizations. Proceeds from the sale of festival sponsorships will be used to purchase flowers and plants for 17th Street’s of tree boxes, as well as flags for the new light posts. The light post flags will promote local groups, organizations and upcoming events. Additional funds from sponsorships will go toward a fund for future 17th Street projects and festivals, as well as to the Ross PTA.

by September 26, 2010 at 1:02 pm 1,819 1 Comment

Recent iPhone robberies were near 21st and P Streets NW.

Monday evening update with more info from MPD 2nd District:

This past weekend, there were several street robberies in which victims had iPhones taken away from them by force. The robberies took place in several areas near Georgetown and Dupont.  Specifically, in the 1400 block of 31st Street, 29th and R Streets, and the 1500 block of 19th Street, NW. A separate robbery, in which a suspect grabbed a victim’s wallet in the 2100 block of P Street was immediately closed with an arrest by Second District officers. The descriptions given by victims in these robberies vary, but detectives are examining the events as we speak and will continue to search for leads.  In the meantime, please continue to use caution when walking at night.  It is best to walk in groups.  Finally–your iPhone is being targeted by thieves so let’s make it as difficult as possible for them. If you have any information about these cases please call (202) 727-9099 or 911to report any suspicious activity or a crime in progress.


MPD 2nd District is warning residents about recent iPhone robberies in the West Dupont area. Be cautious, particularly if you are asked to make call by a stranger.

From MPD:

On Wednesday night, and again late last night (Friday, 2:00 am), there were two separate robberies at 21st and P Streets NW. In both cases, the suspect approached the victims and engaged them in conversation before snatching their iPhones and running away. During the robbery last night, the suspect asked the victim if he could use the phone to make a call, but when the victim offered to dial for him, he snatched the phone and ran. The suspect in both cases is described as an African American male, about 20 years old, 5’8″ to 5’10.” Please use caution while walking late at night in this area and call Police immediately if you see anything suspicious.


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