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by Borderstan.com — May 20, 2016 at 10:30 am 0

Sudhouse Hooch Room

Like discounted drinks and food? Like a free Borderstan T-shirt? Like the work of co-editors Andrew Ramonas and Tim Regan?

Borderstan has some good news.

We’ve reserved the Hooch Room on the upper floor of Sudhouse (1340 U St. NW) for a Borderstan community happy hour on Thursday, June 9, from 5 to 8 p.m.

Join Ramonas and Regan for $3 beers, $6 Moscow mules, $3 orders of sweet potato bacon fries and $6 veggie burgers. We’ll also have Borderstan T-shirts for the first 15 people who show up.

This is an open invite. But we’d really appreciate it if you RSVP ahead of time.

If you have any questions, let us know by emailing or tweeting at us.

Hope to see you there!

by Tim Regan — December 28, 2015 at 11:00 am 3 Comments

It was a big year here at Borderstan. It was also a big year in our neighborhoods. Restaurant openings, restaurant closures, crimes, fires, weirdness — the news never stops.

But what did you read? Here’s a look back at some of our most popular stories of 2015:

Madam’s Organ “fart fine” 

Adams Morgan blues bar Madam’s Organ was fined $500 in June for leaving its windows open while a live band played there in 2014. Regulators said the Adams Morgan bar was fined specifically for violating a settlement agreement brokered in 2008. But why were the windows open in the first place? Madam’s Organ’s owner, Bill Duggan, said a band’s drummer “opened the window to let [a] fart out.”

Though Duggan tried to push back against the fine in July, he ultimately did pay up.

Man shot in head in Adams Morgan

A man was shot in the head on a busy street in Adams Morgan in August. Though little was known about the shooting after it occurred, dozens of witnesses came forward to describe the harrowing crime.

The victim survived the attack, said police at an Adams Morgan ANC meeting in September. The investigation is still ongoing.

When Guy Fieri comes to town

D.C. erupted into a frenzy when we broke the news that Guy Fieri was coming to town in October. Where would he go? What would he eat? Would he ramp his signature red convertible?

Though his visit was shrouded in mystery, we eventually caught wind that the mucho grande food fan would end up wolfing down bread, cheese and meat at Bub and Pop’s on M Street.

Street artist defaces Ben’s Chili Bowl mural

A street artist going by the name “Smear Leader” affixed the grinning visage of Kim Jong Un on top of the Bill Cosby mural at Ben’s Chili Bowl on U Street in October.

The news sparked a larger debate: Was this an act of artistic defiance or vandalism? In an online poll we conducted, 46 percent of you backed the artist’s decision to deface the mural.

Former site of “men’s parties” sex club becoming a J. Crew men’s store

In a poetic twist, J. Crew appears to have its sights set on opening a location in a Logan Circle building that once held the infamous “men’s parties” sex club. Though the company has tentatively set a May opening date, the building still appears to be in the early stages of a full rehabilitation.

Bartender saves the day at wine and tapas bar on 14th Street

When a masked man started waving a knife at Barcelona on 14th Street in August, one quick-thinking bartender saved the day by knocking the would-be robber out.

The Islander says goodbye to U Street

Longtime family-owned Caribbean restaurant and lounge The Islander left U Street in July, and many locals were sad to see it go.

“The soul of DC is dying everywhere and being replaced with boring $500K condos,” wrote one Borderstan commenter. “Hats off to the owner and staff for serving our community for so long,” wrote another.

Faux speakeasy really nails the theme

A faux speakeasy called The Speak was shut down in November for too closely resembling a real speakeasy. According to regulators, the bar was selling alcohol without a valid liquor license.

Photo via Facebook / Madam’s Organ

by Borderstan.com — December 14, 2015 at 4:30 pm 0

Sudhouse Hooch Room

Borderstan is hosting a reader happy hour at Sudhouse (1340 U St. NW) tomorrow. You should come.

Here’s why:

  • Borderstan co-editors Tim “Slam Dunk” Regan and Andrew “Just Crazy ‘Bout Scooping” Ramonas will be there from 5 to 8 p.m. — so you know it will be a party.
  • Beer will cost $3, while Moscow mules will go for $6.
  • Sweet potato bacon fries are $3 and veggie burgers are $6.
  • We have the Sudhouse’s upper floor, a.ka. the “Hooch Room,” all to ourselves.
  • There is a pool table to settle neighborhood disputes through friendly games of billiards.

Though this is an open invite, we’d really appreciate it if you RSVP’ed ahead of time. And if you have any questions, let us know by e-mailing or tweeting at us.

See you tomorrow!

by Borderstan.com — December 1, 2015 at 4:50 pm 0

Sudhouse Hooch Room

Who needs an excuse to go to another happy hour?

Uh, we do. That’s why we’ve reserved the upper floor of Sudhouse (1340 U St. NW) for a Borderstan reader happy hour on Tuesday Dec. 15 at 5 p.m.

Join Borderstan co-editors Tim “Slam Dunk” Regan and Andrew “Just Crazy ‘Bout Scooping” Ramonas for drink and food specials between 5 and 8 p.m. Happy hour prices include $3 beers, $6 Moscow mules, $3 orders of sweet potato bacon fries and $6 veggie burgers.

Attendees will also be able to play pool and board games or bask in the warm glow of two TVs.

Though this is an open invite, we’d really appreciate it if you RSVP’ed ahead of time. And if you have any questions, let us know by e-mailing or tweeting at us.

Hope to see you there!

by Tim Regan — October 9, 2015 at 3:45 pm 0

Taste of DC (Facebook:Taste of DC)

Amazing! The weekend is back by popular demand. Here’s a roundup of what to expect this weekend in and around the Borderstan coverage area:

Events:

  • Taste of D.C. 2015 comes to Pennsylvania Avenue. During the food fest, guests will have the chance to sample food from across the District while enjoying live entertainment on multiple stages. Oh, and there’s a Ben’s Chili Bowl eat-off.
  • Chefs from the Matchbox at 1901 14th Street NW will staff the chef demo table at the14th and U Farmers Market this weekend.
  • Dogs in dirndls will descend on Dupont.
  • A spooky-scary comedy show materializes at the DC Arts Center tonight and tomorrow.
  • Six women gonna get real funny at the Velvet Lounge on U Street.

Stuff you should know:

Photo via Facebook/Taste of DC

by Tim Regan — September 14, 2015 at 10:15 am 0

Crowds braved the wet weather and flocked to the annual 17th Street Festival this Saturday. And although some left with soaked shirts and soggy socks, it’s safe to assume all had a good time.

From Drag City Divas to dozens of vendors, here’s what went down at this year’s 17th Street Festival.

Crowd and band photos courtesy of Luis Gomez

by Tim Regan — June 11, 2015 at 1:40 pm 0

Pride Parade 2013

We’ve had a big couple of weeks here at Borderstan. And we’re about to have a big weekend.

We’re happy to announce that we’ll have a spot in this year’s Pride Parade on Saturday. We’ll have plenty of staffers on hand to pass out some nifty new Borderstan T-shirts.

Check out the parade map here, and you can follow us on Twitter if you want our location. Looking forward to seeing you on Saturday!

by Tim Regan — June 1, 2015 at 9:00 am 4 Comments

Good morning. Borderstan is back.

We probably look a little different than you remember. That’s because, in April, Local News Now LLC, the publisher of ARLnow.com, acquired Borderstan from founders Matt Rhoades and Luis Gomez. Since then, we’ve worked with Matt and Luis to map out how we can build upon what locals loved about the site the first time around.

And based on what we’ve come up with, we think you’ll be pleased.

Moving forward, we plan to cover everything Matt and Luis did well, from arts and entertainment, crime and politics, to local businesses and dining. We’ll also add to that mix up-to-date breaking neighborhood news coverage in a large swath of Northwest D.C., which includes the areas around Dupont Circle and Logan Circle, up to U Street, Adams Morgan and Columbia Heights.

Our site editor is Tim Regan, who has covered local news, restaurants, oddities and the arts for Washington Post Express, Washington City Paper and Thrillist, among others. He’ll occasionally be assisted by Andrew Ramonas, the editor of our sister site, Hill Now, Local News Now managing editor Bryan Doyle and a stable of stalwart freelance contributors.

Have a suggestion? Want to contribute? Drop us a line at [email protected]. Or, if you have an idea for a story we should write, call our tip line at 202-930-3546 to leave a message about what’s going on in your neighborhood. Be sure to connect with us on Twitter and Facebook, and check back with us frequently. We’ll be updating the site daily.

by Borderstan.com — May 7, 2015 at 12:45 pm 0

-06.01-DuPont-webres-37

Borderstan.com will be back before you know it, delivering comprehensive neighborhood news coverage of Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, the U Street area — and now Columbia Heights.

We’ll relaunch Monday, June 1 with editor Tim Regan at the helm. Tim has covered local news, restaurants, oddities and the arts for Washington Post Express, Washington City Paper and Thrillist, among others. Most recently, he was assistant editor of two magazines on the housing market and home renovation, ProSales and Remodeling.

Local News Now LLC, the publisher of ARLnow.com, acquired Borderstan.com earlier this year from founders Matt Rhoades and Luis Gomez, as we announced last month. In the meantime, we’ve been working with Matt and Luis to map out how we can build upon what locals loved about the site the first time around, from August 2008 to June 2013.

You can expect up-to-the minute, community-based reporting on breaking news, development, restaurants and more, in the areas Borderstan previously covered. As part of the relaunch, we’ll cover Columbia Heights, too.

Questions, comments, scoops or inquiries about becoming contributor? We can be reached at [email protected].

by Borderstan.com — June 28, 2013 at 2:00 pm 25 Comments

"Borderstan"

The eyes of Borderstan: Our great contributors, past and present.

It’s time for us at Borderstan to say thank you and goodbye for now. This is our last planned post on Borderstan.com, although the site will remain live for several months.

This was a difficult decision to make. We have enjoyed covering one of Washington’s great neighborhoods: the Dupont-Logan-U Street area. When we first went live in August 2008, we had no idea that Borderstan would grow to where it is today.

We were thrilled to have met so many of the great people in this neighborhood and to write about the changes occurring in our city.

From everyone involved with Borderstan.com we want to say thank you to our readers and advertisers. We will always remember the support we received from the community and locally owned businesses.

To our volunteer contributors, we cannot begin to thank you enough — and this includes the wonderful photographers who shared their photographs in our Flickr group. Even though some of you moved on before today’s final post and may not be listed on our contributor’s page, your hard work and dedication are remembered. We couldn’t have done it without you.

Luis Gomez and Matt Rhoades, co-founders

It has been a pleasure to bring you the neighborhood news.

by Borderstan.com — June 28, 2013 at 8:00 am 1 Comment

"Missing"

What did you miss during the past week on the great big Internet? (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Willis Shawver. Follow him on Twitter at @WShawver or email him at Willis[AT]borderstan.com.

The Internet is a big place and you can’t be expected to see everything. Don’t worry: Borderstan Missing Links are here to help. We’ve collected some highlights from the past week that you might have missed. Enjoy.

The District

  • Museum of National History scores its first full Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton. (DCist)
  • Nearly 400 koi fish were stolen from a pond in an industrial park in Herndon, VA. (CBSLocal)
  • City of Alexandria passes ordinance that allows bicyclists to ride on sidewalks. (WAMU)
  • Michigan Congressman proposes bill that would eliminate all traffic cameras in the District. (DCist)
  • DC Council votes to lower the sale tax from 6% to %5.75. Lowest level since 2009. (Washington Times)
  • The Rolling Stones zing President Obama over NSA wiretaps during DC concert. (Washington Post)
  • Skateboarding legend Tony Hawk donates first skateboard to Smithsonian. (WJLA)
  • Mayor Gray prioritizes education spending with $92 million in projected local revenue. (BizJournal)

DC Housing

  • For only 2.6 million you could have this old DC engine station. Fire poll included. (Estately)
  • DC Chief Financial Officer forecasts an end to the city’s population growth. (CityPaper)
  • The Atlantic Plumbing Supply Company building next to the 9:30 Club is no more. (Price of Petworth)

Popular Culture

  • Kinda racist? No worries. Paula Dean’s cookbook jumps to #1 on Amazon best sellers list. (BuzzFeed)
  • A map of the United States that shows the most famous company brand from each state. (DesignTaxi)
  • Have you been wondering what actor Rick Moranis has been up to? Wonder no more. (HeebMag)

Sports

  • PETA ranks Nats Park as the third most vegetarian-friendly stadium in MLB. (Washington Post)
  • Joe Theismann interested in replacing Sam Huff on the Redskins radio broadcasts. (NBC Sports)
  • Not satisfied with free burritos for life, Bryce Harper scores some free Cap’n Crunch. (Washington Post)
  • With the third pick in the NBA Draft, the Wizards select Otto Porter Jr. from Georgetown. (SBNation)
  • Every single shot Lebron James made during game 7 of the NBA Finals in one GIF. (DeadSpin)
  • Don’t hate on the mullet. Rendon’s hair sparks Nationals rallying call. (Washington Post)

Random Picks of the Week

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by Borderstan.com — June 21, 2013 at 11:00 am 0

"Links"

What did you miss during the past week on the great big Internet? (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Willis Shawver. Follow him on Twitter at @WShawver or email him at Willis[AT]borderstan.com.

The Internet is a big place and you can’t be expected to see everything. Don’t worry: Borderstan Missing Links are here to help. We’ve collected some highlights from the past week that you might have missed. Enjoy.

The District

  • Hank, the new sloth bear cub at the National Zoo, made his public debut this week. (DCist)
  • More than 10,000 students were suspended this past academic year in DC public schools. (WAMU)
  • Old NPR headquarters building in Chinatown succumbs to the wrecking ball. (Prince of Petworth)
  • Another Shake Shack is set to open in Penn Quarter. I love me some Shake Shack. (DCist)
  • Fairfax County schools working with sleep specialists to study school start times. (WAMU)
  • Sometimes bag searches on the Metro aren’t always optional. (GreaterGreaterWashington)
  • First child of 19, Josh Duggar takes a job with conservative lobbying firm in the District. (DCist)
  • That trip out to Tysons Corner Mall will have to wait. Silver line opening delayed till January. (NBC4)

DC Housing

  • Shepherd Park and Petworth are the two hottest housing neighborhoods in DC right now. (BizJournals)
  • Owners of Meridian Hill Baptist Church in Mt. Pleasant hope to turn it into a 70-unit condo. (UrbanTurf)
  • I’m shocked! Real estate in Georgetown is getting more expensive. (Georgetown Metropolitan)
  • If you have an opinion about the redevelopment of Walter Reed, let them know. (WalterReedTomorrow)
  • Study finds that DC renters can save almost 30% by sharing an apartment with a roommate. (UrbanTurf)
  • A look at the ten buildings that changed Washington, DC. (Parchment)

Popular Culture

  • A video of all the “OOHS” in Saved by the Bell. Lots of kissing and AC Slater dancing. (Shortlist)
  • North West. A quadrant in Washington, DC and a Kardashian. (DailyMail)
  • The 10 greatest sitcom characters that were introduced late in show’s run. (UPROXX)

Sports

  • Alexander Ovechkin has three MPV trophies … and zero Stanley Cups. (Sports Illustrated)
  • Bryce Harper modeling underwear. Why haven’t you clicked the link yet? (Washington Post)
  • Don’t expect the Wizards to revert back to the Bullets nickname anytime soon. (Washington Times)
  • How well do you know the MLB rulebook? Take this quiz to find out how little you do. (ESPN)
  • John Wall has been busy this offseason. At the tattoo parlor. (Washington Post)

Random Picks of the Week

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by Borderstan.com — June 21, 2013 at 10:00 am 0

From Scott Leibowitz. Find Scott on Twitter @Lebodome. Email him at [email protected].

"crawl"

Always keep on moving as you do a bar crawl. (Luis Gomez Photos)

One of the major advantages of living in a condensed city like good ol’ Washington is the proximity from one activity to the next.

In many of our hometowns the restaurants and bars are located on two blocks next to each other and the selection is limited. However, in the Borderstan area we are spoiled to having a great selection of upscale watering holes to first-class dive bars.

This type of set up leaves DC ripe for a time honored tradition of both college students and young professionals looking to lose an entire day; bar-crawls.

For those that have done one before, you know that a bar-crawl is no ordinary weekend plan. It takes preparation, execution, and a strong desire to make it to the next bar. I have participated in a few in my day.

Here are some tried and true tips for getting the most out of any city bar-crawl

Prepare Wisely

  1. Usually each crawl has a map and the deals available at each place. I recommend not making an exact travel plan but having a general idea in the direction you think you can do the most damage.
  2. The point of the crawl is to explore and walk around so go to areas with high concentrations of participating bars.
  3. Also if you want to pre-game, go on the lighter side, as you have a whole day to drink.

Mid-Way Fill Up

  1. At some point you and your crew will get quite hungry and won’t be able to concentrate. For me last week, this hit my party right near Shake Shack and man did it hit the spot.
  2. Be warned though that if you fill up too much, it could dampen team morale and call for an early exit. I recommend something like Amsterdam Fries for the just right feeling.

One Hour, Tops

  1. The point of the crawl is to go to as many places as you possibly can in one night. Don’t get stuck in a bar longer than hour. Keep the body moving and avoid learning any bartender’s name.
  2. One last, small tip, always use the bathroom of the place you are in and don’t put it off for the next bar. You never know what could happen between locations.

The Bourbon Bash is this Saturday so gather your buddies, sign up, and prepare for what should be a very fun Saturday in Borderstan.

This column first ran October 31, 2012.

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by Borderstan.com — June 18, 2013 at 9:00 am 0

From Mathew Harkins. Email him at mharkins[AT]borderstan.com.

"Volunteer"

Martha’s Table on 14th Street NW. (Luis Gomez Photos)

There’s a lot to be thankful for in our community. Borderstan is home to some wonderful development projects, from new condos and apartment buildings to new supermarkets to a seemingly unending supply of new restaurants, bars and cafes.

There are a lot things being offered in the neighborhood, so why not carve a little time out of your day to give something back?

Along with all those great things mentioned above in the neighborhood, there are some great venues for volunteering here in Borderstan.

N Street Village

N Street Village, located on N Street between 14th Street and Vermont Avenue, is a facility designed to help homeless and low-income women in our neighborhood through supportive services and housing. NSV takes a broad, holistic approach in assisting these women as they face a number of challenges that vary from individual to individual, including homelessness, addiction, mental illness and more.

A selection of the volunteer opportunities at NSV includes: tutoring, preparing and serving meals, maintaining the courtyard garden, helping with fundraising and much more. To find out more about these opportunities and to apply to volunteer, head over to the NSV Volunteer page.

Common Good City Farm

Since there’s no better way to state it than what’s already on their website, Common Good City Farm’s mission “is to grow food, educate, and help low-income DC community members meet their food needs.” Located just outside the Borderstan area near V and 4th Streets, CGCF is exactly what it sounds like: a small farm in the middle of the city that teaches residents and students about food production, healthy eating and environmental sustainability.

Just last year, they CGCF “provided over 6,300 pounds of fresh vegetables to low-income families.” There are many ways to help, including donations, dropping off scraps for composting and volunteering on the farm itself. See their Get Involved page as well as their Volunteer page for more information.

Martha’s Table

Located on 14th Street between V and W Streets, Martha’s Table uses education, nutrition and family support services to address poverty and issues stemming from poverty. Some of their volunteering opportunities include preparing food, tutoring children and staffing their mobile soup kitchen. You can find out more about these opportunities and fill out a volunteer application on their Volunteer Opportunities page.

Other Organizations

  • Bread for the City – “The mission of Bread for the City is to provide vulnerable residents of Washington, DC, with comprehensive services, including food, clothing, medical care, and legal and social services, in an atmosphere of dignity and respect.”
  • SOME (So Others Might Eat) – “An interfaith, community-based organization that exists to help the poor and homeless of our nation’s capital. We meet the immediate daily needs of the people we serve with food, clothing, and health care.”
  • DC Central Kitchen – “Through job training, healthy food distribution, and local farm partnerships, DC Central Kitchen offers path-breaking solutions to poverty, hunger, and poor health.”
  • Church of the Ascension and Saint Agnes – A local church, located on Massachusetts Avenue between 13th and 12th Streets, with a handful of programs that reach out to the neighborhood through blood drives, partnering with other institutions (like NSV), working with local seniors and the disabled, and more.

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by Borderstan.com — June 17, 2013 at 10:00 am 2 Comments

From Mathew Harkins. Email him at mharkins[AT]borderstan.com.

The following interview is with Francisco “Paco” Fimbres, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Engagement. A longtime resident of DC, Borderstan recently caught up with Fimbres to discuss why he makes his home here in DC, what changes he has seen occurring in our city and what it’s like working directly for Mayor Vincent Gray.

"Fimbres"

Paco Fimbres (Courtesy Paco Fimbres)

Borderstan: Are you still living in Foggy Bottom? Do you make it over to the Borderstan area often?

Fimbres: I have been living in the West End-Foggy Bottom area since 2009. It is an excellent neighborhood with a great diversity of people. Our ANC Commissioner Rebecca Coder is fantastic. We are very lucky to have her serve our SMD.  Other great neighborhood assets are Gary Griffith and Asher Corson both very passionate about our neighborhood.

We have Trader Joes, Whole Foods, GWU Hospital, GU, Meiwah, RIS, Rasika and so many other great spots. However, I lived from 2007-2009 on 16th Street across from the JCC and miss the neighborhood tremendously. I am amazed and grateful for the transformation of the 17th to 14th Street corridor and the rebirth of Logan and Shaw. Amazing and exciting things are happening citywide.

My wife and I visit Borderstan often. Some of our favorite people and beloved friends live in Borderstan. Also Le Diplomate and Pearl Dive, two of our favorite venues, can be found in Borderstan.

Borderstan: What is it like working for Mayor Gray?

Fimbres: Honestly, it is a true honor and pleasure. I consider it a great responsibility and privilege to serve our city and fellow neighbors, while working for the Mayor of DC.

Vincent Gray is emotionally mature, deliberate and thoughtful in his decision making process; he is also charming, innovative, detailed oriented and has the right temperament for the job. No kidding, he is the first one in and the last one out at the office. On a human and personal level, I could not have asked for a better boss and Mayor; he is a truly decent and kind man.  I don’t know if he will run for reelection, but Vince Gray has earned a second term. Just look around our city, we are moving forward in the right direction by leaps and bounds.

I also work daily with Stephen Glaude, the most important and key member of the Mayor’s cabinet in my personal opinion. Steve is the Mayor’s Community Affairs Director and my direct supervisor. Steve has all of the affinity group offices under his responsibility like OLA, African Affairs, Women’s Policy, Clean City, LGBT Affairs, Asian Pacific Islander Affairs and others. Steve has been a great mentor and teacher. I also enjoy working with Daryl Levine, Sedrick Muhammad, Sheila Bunn, Chris Murphy and Pedro Ribeiro all good people and solid professionals. The Mayor has assembled a great team of committed, dedicated and professional individuals. Still my two favorite ladies in the DC Government have to be Chief Lanier and Assistant Chief Groomes. Both are just awesome.

Borderstan: What exactly does your current role as Director of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Engagement entail? And what is it that those who report to you do?

Fimbres: I direct, manage and coordinate all citywide neighborhood engagement efforts. We serve residents as their link between their Mayor and city government agencies. The Mayor’s Ward Liaisons are under my direct supervision and management, but again we are lucky to work in the same office space as our leaders Mayor Gray and Steve Glaude — they both lead by example. Essentially, we are the Mayor’s go-to folks for concerns, complaints, questions, neighborhood issues and challenges.

No issue is too small or too complex, we are committed to helping residents navigate through our government’s agencies and getting results in a timely, efficient and satisfactory fashion. We are results oriented and accountable to the residents directly, since they contact the Mayor and we act on his behalf to resolve their issues quickly. It is a 24/7 job that is not for the weak of heart, thin-skinned or passive public servant.

Demands and challenges across our city are great, but we pride ourselves on having the experience, background and will to get things done. We especially like to get difficult cases. However, there are times, when we cannot help or our agencies have exhausted their talents and resources to assist our fellow neighbors; this is when we suffer along with the residents. However, we have complete and uncompromising support from Mayor Gray and city agencies.

Ward Liaisons attend nightly, weekly, and monthly meetings/events. They represent the Mayor at graduations, funerals and special events. They attend Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) meetings, canvass neighborhoods, hold office hours, conduct neighborhood walk-throughs with the MPD and the Mayor and they have core team meetings with government agencies.  We also serve as first responders during some emergencies. We share information with agencies for their action based on information provided while visiting their respective wards and neighborhood stakeholders.

Borderstan: You’ve been working in/with Ward 2 for some time. How have you seen the neighborhoods changing?

Fimbres: Yes, the changes have all been positive. We need to keep fighting together for a safe, clean, livable and economically vibrant city and ward. Mayor Gray, during his tenure, has been very attentive and engaged with Ward 2 residents and leaders, Councilman Jack Evans and his team have also played a pivotal role in the current conditions of Ward 2. Finally, a special shout out to all of those unsung and unpaid elected officials (ANCs), bloggers and other civic-minded stake holders, who live and work in W2.

Borderstan: What do you think is the biggest issue not being addressed right now in the city?

Fimbres: In my personal opinion, the biggest challenge for our city is that all of us, together and collectively, ensure that we not only reduce but also eliminate poverty, hunger and unemployment across the city’s eight wards. There are efforts past and current that have attempted to reduce/eradicate poverty, hunger, unemployment and homelessness, but have yet to truly accomplish this crucial objective for DC.  Also we need to keep working on our education system. New, comfortable and beautiful buildings are important, but excellent teachers and committed/involved parents are essential.

We also need to achieve budget autonomy and full voting rights in Congress. This is important for our self-respect and dignity as a people. Another important matter is that we need to support and care for our children, youth and seniors. Finally more affordable housing needs to become available, so that our first responders, police and fire heroes can afford to live in the city they so passionately defend daily.

How can we be the nation’s capital and continue to see developing country issues in some parts of our city? We need more public-private partnerships. The for-profit sector needs to step it up and support non-profit organizations with more fervor.

Borderstan: You came to DC to attend American University in 1996 but you also left to work and travel overseas. What brought you back here? Why DC?

Fimbres: My family still works and resides between Tijuana, Mexico, and San Diego — but simply put, DC is home. This is where I met my wife and we would like to raise our children here. Therefore my commitment to DC is not only professional, but very personal. I would like to see DC one day be considered like Paris or another of the world’s unique capitals. What makes DC great is not only its rich history, beautiful architecture and current events, but it’s people, the native Washingtonians, and all of those who have moved here to live and work.

I was taught from a very young age, that there is no substitute for hard and intelligent work, but one must also aspire to be the best in their trade. My vocation in life first and foremost is to be an excellent husband and father, but my second is to be a great public servant – a true and sincere servant and leader. My life continues to be a work in progress and I am blessed to serve my fellow residents.

Borderstan: Having traveled and worked overseas, and having worked for a number of presidential campaigns, do you have national or international ambitions beyond DC? What is in the future for a Francisco Fimbres?

Fimbres: I am a firm believer that public service does not begin or end with an election, it starts at home and should transcend into one’s own community. At this time, I am content and honored to work in the City Government. I would like to continue serving Mayor Gray and my fellow residents across the city’s eight wards.

As for the future, time and circumstances will determine next steps. However, my love for DC and its people is great, my passion for public service ever present, and my need to serve well and effectively are all part of my make-up as a human being.

Having worked for two Mayors, I am blessed for these experiences. The great, tireless, passionate and committed people I have met in the city government, my ONE team, supervisors, mentors, neighborhood leaders and beyond inspire me to continue fighting for the residents of Washington, DC every day.

Therefore, I don’t foresee a future where public service is not part of my daily existence.

An earlier interview with another participant in local government, Andrew Huff, can be found here.

The opinions and views expressed in this interview are those of the interviewee and do not necessarily reflect the positions of the city government.

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