by Borderstan.com October 28, 2015 at 2:45 pm 1 Comment

Bei Bei, photo courtesy of National Zoo

Do you like the National Zoo’s prized new panda, Bei Bei?

Be honest.

Do you care about that panda? Do you care when it sneezes? Do you care that it now weighs nearly 10 pounds? Do you watch the panda cam at work? Do you care about it? Do you? Do you?

We had a thought this morning — perhaps a little more panda coverage on Borderstan wouldn’t be a bad thing. Perhaps you’d like to be updated as the panda cub matures into a much larger panda … creature. Perhaps you’d like to read about when it tumbles through the snow for the first time or when it meets a major celebrity.

Then again, perhaps you’re sick of hearing about the panda. Perhaps you think the panda is a nuisance in your newsfeed. Perhaps you’d rather see less of the furry little ball.

So, let’s put it to a vote. Panda yeah or panda nah? You tell us. And if you feel especially passionate, let us know why you feel that way in the comments below.

Photo courtesy of National Zoo

by Andrew Ramonas October 28, 2015 at 1:35 pm 0

Barre3 class at BicycleSPACEFINAL (Photo courtesy of Alicia Sokol)

Locals can now try a workout that combines yoga, pilates and ballet barre before it officially comes to the 14th Street corridor.

The owner of a barre3 location under construction at 1832 14th St. NW is offering several free classes around the Borderstan coverage area before the studio is slated to open in January. Classes are an hour long and have strength training and low-impact cardio exercises.

The sessions include workouts at the Hamiltonian Gallery (1353 U St. NW) and Pacers Running (1821 14th St. NW) over the next several weeks.

“Teaching classes in these spaces has been a fun way to give people a taste of what barre3 14th Street will bring while highlighting neighborhood gems,” owner Alicia Sokol said in an email. “It’s especially fun when bringing people to spaces they have either not yet discovered or haven’t been to in a while.”

Founded seven years ago in Portland, Ore., barre3 has more than 75 locations across the country, including one studio in Georgetown.

Photo courtesy of Alicia Sokol

by Andrew Ramonas October 28, 2015 at 12:15 pm 0

A group of Adams Morgan condominium owners aren’t happy about the construction of a 40-unit residential building that could obstruct their rooftop views of the District.

The Unit Owners’ Association of The Erie Condominium at 2351 Champlain St. NW are contesting the height of penthouses under construction at The Morgan, which neighbors the condo building. In an appeal to the D.C. Board of Zoning Adjustment made public yesterday, the condo owners said the penthouses are slated to reach a height greater than 9 feet, contradicting what they saw in zoning filings for The Morgan.

Laurie Horvitz, a lawyer for the condo owners, wrote in a letter to the Board of Zoning Adjustment last week that The Morgan initially had sent to D.C. officials a letter that included “‘roof views’ from the Erie Condominium that did not show any towering penthouse.” On The Morgan’s website, Capital City Real Estate notes that the building will have a “modern facade” and “rooftop cabanas.”

The condo owners “first noticed troubling rooftop construction at the property in October of 2015,” Horvitz wrote. “The construction work is still ongoing and the roof structures are not yet under roof. [The Morgan] is building tall roof structures that are inconsistent with the special zoning relief that was provided to this property previously.”

A representative of The Morgan wasn’t immediately available to comment.

The Board of Zoning Adjustment is expected to rule on the appeal in the coming months.

by Tim Regan October 28, 2015 at 10:20 am 0

Thousands of people lined up along 17th Street NW to watch racers in costumes and heels sprint for the finish line during last night’s 17th Street High Heel Race.

Television news crews, Dupont Circle business owners and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and Councilmember Jack Evans were also in attendance to see the super-sized spectacle.

So, who won? According to the race results, Tasha Salad won the day by sprinting across the finish line in 41 seconds. But Esmerelda and Urtethra Franklin were close behind — both racers finished just one second later.

Photos by Borderstan and Luis Gomez

by Tim Regan October 28, 2015 at 9:15 am 0

Dupont Circle residents can now get their Coffee Bar fix a little closer to home.

The coffee shop opened its second location on the corner of 17th and M Streets NW earlier this morning.

The store, said Coffee Bar assistant manager Jeremy Jensen last month, is catered toward commuters and people who want to take their coffee to-go. But the new shop does have a small seating area that faces the street for optimal people watching.

by Andrew Ramonas October 28, 2015 at 9:05 am 0

Sollys Mural on U Street

Chick-fil-A is Almost Here — Chick-fil-A is scheduled to start serving its fried chicken sandwiches and waffle fries in Columbia Heights a week from today. [Washington Business Journal]

Crime in Park View — Park View crime is “serious, but not as dire as the Washington Post would have you believe,” according to Park View, D.C. The Post earlier this week published a story on the effects of recent shootings and other crime on residents of the neighborhood. [Park View, D.C.]

K Street’s New ‘Caviar Lounge’ — The District is set to get its first “fusion caviar lounge” this year at 1413 K St. NW. The restaurant is called Odessa. “Since we’re on K Street, we’re trying to market ourselves to the crowd that’s here: the lobbyists, the lawyers,” general manager Charles Chong said. “But at the same time, we’re not trying to be overly exclusive.” [Washington City Paper]

Italian Eatery Coming Soon to Adams Morgan — Red White and Basil, which bills itself as a “fresh & saucy pasta bar,” is slated to open at 1781 Florida Ave. NW “very soon,” a representative of the restaurant tweeted yesterday. [Borderstan]

by Tim Regan October 28, 2015 at 7:30 am 1 Comment

Man Linked to Bank Robbery, photo via MPDPolice are on the lookout for a man suspected of robbing a bank downtown yesterday afternoon.

According to police, a man carrying a black briefcase and dressed in a black trench coat, black scarf and a black brim hat robbed the Capital One Bank at 901 New York Avenue NW around 3:43 p.m.

Police released several photos of the man late last night.

From MPD:

The person of interest is described as black male, 40-45 years of age, approximately 5’10” in height, dark complexion, clean shaven, average build, wearing a black trench coat, black brim hat, black scarf, and carrying a black leather briefcase. He was last seen westbound on New York Avenue, Northwest.

If you see this suspect, call 911 for immediate police response. Anyone with information is asked to call the police at (202) 727-9099. Additionally, anonymous information may be submitted to the department’s TEXT TIP LINE by text messaging 50411.

The Metropolitan Police Department currently offers a reward of up to$5,000 to anyone that provides information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for any bank robbery committed in the District of Columbia.

Photo via MPD

by Andrew Ramonas October 27, 2015 at 4:30 pm 1 Comment

Pleasant Pops pop (Photo via Pleasant Pops)

Move over candy corn and fun-size Snickers. Pleasant Pops in Adams Morgan has free cookies and cream and strawberry ginger lemonade pops for young trick-or-treaters.

The shop at 1781 Florida Ave. NW is handing out complimentary frozen treats to all costumed kids, who are accompanied by adults, according to a Pleasant Pops representative. But an adult must buy something at the store to receive the pop on the house.

Pleasant Pops is open from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. this Saturday on Halloween.

Photo via Pleasant Pops

by Tim Regan October 27, 2015 at 3:50 pm 0

Stetson's neonStetson’s fans have just four days after today to visit the iconic U Street bar before it closes for good.

The bar, which has existed at 1610 U St. NW since 1980, will shut down on Oct. 31, said assistant general manager Tommy Osborne last month. Patrons wishing to throw back one last drink can sidle up to the bar any time before Sunday to pay their respects.

The bar will celebrate its 35-year run with a big bash Osborne describes as “lots of old school community celebrating the closing of [one of the] great places of the past” this Thursday at 9:30 pm.

Osborne added that he will be working behind the bar during the party and will be available to share memories from his time working there.

What kind of memories, you ask?

“This was the place where [Democracts] could come and be incognito,” Osborne told us last month. “Several people whose names don’t want to be mentioned publicly used to hang out here and get tore up. Like, they throw down like five one hundred dollar bills to let them stay until you have to pour them into a cab.”

Chuck Brown also once played an impromptu show at the bar. A murder-mystery reality show filmed was filmed there once. There are actual bullets in the ceiling.

So what happens after Stetson’s closes? “It most likely will be a piece of D.C. history that’s just going to float off into the ether just like so many other places have before,” Osborne said.

by Tim Regan October 27, 2015 at 2:50 pm 0

Prosthetic leg

Are you missing a prosthetic leg? If so, someone may have spotted it on a sidewalk in Columbia Heights.

Twitter user “Larry McDorchester” tweeted about seeing the lone prothesis on his lunch break earlier today. “Anyone forget their leg? 3000 block [of] 14th Street,” he said. McDorchester added that the leg was still there when he returned from lunch.

It was unclear if the leg was discarded, stolen or lost. Police public affairs specialist Alice Kim was unable to to speculate on the origin of the prosthetic leg “based on the limited information provided.”

Photo by Twitter user @McDorchester

by Andrew Ramonas October 27, 2015 at 1:30 pm 0

Something funny is happening on a U Street corridor building.

A mural with two people who appear to be laughing is taking shape on an exterior wall of the Paul Laurence Dunbar Apartments at 15th and U streets NW.

The six-story mural had outlines of a man, a woman and possibly a piano keyboard on a light blue background early this afternoon. The sketches take up less than a quarter of the space set aside for the artwork.

It isn’t clear yet what artist Aniekan Udofia plans to do next with the mural. He has stayed mum about his intentions for the project and wasn’t at the mural when Borderstan visited it today.

Udofia’s work appears in Shaw, Adams Morgan and other parts of the District.

Last month, Udofia completed a mural on the side of Bohemian Caverns at 2001 11th St. NW. He is also the artist behind the now-controvesial painting of Bill Cosby on the U Street Ben’s Chili Bowl.

by Andrew Ramonas October 27, 2015 at 11:40 am 0

(Updated at 3:15 p.m.) Adams Morgan is about to get a little saucier.

Red White and Basil, which bills itself as a “fresh & saucy pasta bar,” is slated to open at 1781 Florida Ave. NW “very soon,” but “not today,” a representative of the eatery tweeted this afternoon. This morning, a sign on the restaurant’s door indicated that the eatery’s opening was planned for today.

It wasn’t immediately clear what exactly the Italian restaurant will serve once it opens in the former Hans Pedr’ Kaffe space. A Red White and Basil representative wasn’t available to comment this morning, and neither the eatery’s website nor its Facebook page has a menu.

A liquor license application filed last month only said the restaurant will serve “freshly-made pasta as well as beer and wine.”

The eatery can hold tables for 17 diners inside and 20 people outside.

by Tim Regan October 27, 2015 at 9:35 am 0

Surprise! Ray’s Hell Burger is alive in D.C.

The previously troubled eatery teased its forthcoming Mount Vernon Triangle location (451 K Street NW) with an impromptu “Ray’s The Undead” party and free chicken sandwiches last night.

Guests could choose between “angry” and “monster” chicken sandwiches during the event. As one might expect, plenty of people lined up for the gratis grub, reported Borderstan contributor Laetitia Brock.

If you didn’t make it out last night, don’t fret. Employees behind the counter said the hyped Arlington-based burger shop is set to open its doors on K Street with a full menu of burgers, sandwiches, shakes and fries and later today.

Photos by Laetitia Brock

by Tim Regan October 27, 2015 at 9:05 am 0

High heel race 2012

Peek Inside the Dabney — The new eatery will fire up its ten-foot hearth in Shaw when it opens later this week. [Washingtonian]

Goodnight, Everybody — Local radio celebrity and host of WAMU’s “Big Broadcast” Ed Walker died early Monday morning, just hours after his final broadcast aired. [WAMU]

Eat at Ben’s, Enroll in Obamacare — Are you an uninsured young person who hasn’t signed up for the Affordable Care Act? Ben’s Chili Bowl wants to change that. [Politico]

Park View Gets Spooky — Porches in Park View are pulling out the stops for Halloween this year. [Park View, D.C.]

Night at the Races — The 29th annual 17th Street High Heel Race is tonight. Before you grab your heels, here’s what you need to know. [Borderstan]

by Tim Regan October 27, 2015 at 7:10 am 0

A man was shot and killed in his car on the 2900 block of Sherman Avenue NW around 11:15 a.m.

Police have arrested the man they say shot and killed 38-year-old Marcus Manor in his car near the border of Columbia Heights and Park View last week.

Authorities announced late last night that 28-year-old Kevin Chase of Northwest D.C. was arrested and charged with first-degree murder while armed yesterday.

Information on Chase’s lawyer was not immediately available.

Police first received a report of gunshots on the 2900 block of Sherman Avenue NW at 11:10 a.m. last Wednesday. When they arrived, police said they found Manor unconscious. Manor, who police later said was shot in the chest, died on the scene.

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