Bloomingdale Bites – February 2017


A busy January in Bloomingdale means there’s a lot to get to in this month’s Bloomingdale Buzz:

History in the Making
At the Jan. 23 monthly meeting of the Bloomingdale Civic Association (BCA) the Bloomingdale Historic Preservation Committee gave its full presentation on the effort to retain the neighborhood’s historic character. Among the matters discussed was a special zoning that would protect the street views and prevent an overabundance of invasive construction. The proposed zoning plan is being drafted by the Bloomingdale Historic Preservation Committee in cooperation with the District’s Office of Planning. After the comprehensive presentation, the committee recommended that it continue the process with the Office of Planning to continue drafting a zoning plan, then meet to finalize it, make it available to the entire community, garner community support, and project an enforcement date by the end of the year.

The committee and the BCA’s president, Teri Janine Quinn, reaffirmed that a vote will happen at the association’s Feb. 27 meeting. The ballot will decide whether to open the vote on historic designation to the entire Bloomingdale community rather than solely members of the BCA.

Tragedy in Bloomingdale
Beloved Bloomingdale actress and yoga instructor Tricia McCauley was found dead in the back seat of her car on Dec. 27, after going missing on Christmas Day when she did not show up to a party hosted by friends. The man police arrested as a suspect in McCauley’s murder has several prior arrests. On the evening of Dec. 27, friends, family, and community members held a candlelit vigil in McCauley’s honor, which ended in the LeDroit Park Community Garden, a favorite destination of hers.

In her most recent stage appearance, last year, McCauley played Maria in Frederick Lonsdale’s “On Approval” at the Washington Stage Guild. She also did a pair of stage readings at the Guild in October. The most recent post on her website,, is from three days after her death and features links to two moving tributes to her life.

Coming Soon: Sylvan Cafe and Bakery
The space formerly occupied by neighborhood favorite Grassroots Gourmet will not be empty for long. The owners of Bacio Pizzeria, at Seaton Place and First Street NW, are bringing the new Sylvan Cafe to the space at 104 Rhode Island Ave. NW. In a post on the cafe’s Facebook page the owners expressed excitement about moving into the facility: “First let us say how grateful we are to Sara Fatell and the beautiful establishment she created in Grassroots Gourmet. Our top priority as the new owners of this space will be to honor her creation of a warm and inclusive community gathering spot where neighbors can come and enjoy great food, drink and company.”

The post points out that the building used to be the Sylvan Theatre, which opened in 1913 as the American Theater and changed its name to Sylvan in 1929. Though it closed in 1965, its sign has remained, and the owners “are planning to bring the beautiful Sylvan sign back to life as well – though it may take a little while as we investigate the best way to restore it in a historically sensitive manner,” according to the post.

Sylvan Cafe and Bakery will feature bagels, an in-house pastry chef, breads, and cakes, as well as sandwiches and paninis. While an opening day has yet to be announced, stay tuned to the pages on Facebook ( and Twitter (@SylvanCafe) for updates.

On Feb. 26 All Nations Baptist Church will host its Black History Month Spelling Bee, open to “all youth-all grades,” according to a flyer. The purpose of the event is to “enhance the spelling skills and increase the vocabulary of the youth, and to increase the youths’ level of awareness of persons and information related to Black History.” While all entrants will receive a certificate of participation, the first-, second-, and third-place winners will each receive a prize and a trophy. All registrants will be given a word list for advance study. Get more information from Minister Paulette Holloway at 202-832-9591 or Applications are due by Feb. 15.

Rock ‘n’ Road Closures
On March 11 the annual United Airlines Rock ‘n’ Roll Washington DC Marathon and Half Marathon will pass through Bryant and North Capitol streets NW, closing sections of both. For the full list of closures and a full map of the race visit

Shave the Date
On Sunday, March 12, the St. Baldrick’s Foundation will hold its annual “Brave a Shave for Kids with Cancer” event at Boundary Stone, located at 116 Rhode Island Ave. NW. The foundation has set a fundraising goal of $750,000, all of which will go to children’s cancer research. The event, which started 17 years ago as a bet between three men who ended up raising $100,000 for research, has become a national focus in the years since. To find out more about the event, the foundation, or how to donate, visit

Max Moline is a communications specialist living in DC. He frequents Nationals Park and enjoys writing about food as much as he does eating it. He’s always looking for new places to try. Rooftops and cigar lounges are a plus! Get in touch:; @MaxMoline425.

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