Shaw Streets – June 2017


Carter G. Woodson Home Tours Start
The National Park Service has finally opened the Carter G. Woodson Home, the residence and office of the father of African-American History at 1538 Ninth St. NW, for regular tours. Starting May 27, interpretive tours will be given every Saturday and Sunday, six times a day. Each tour, which covers the first, second, and third floors of the house, lasts about 30 minutes and is limited to 10 people.

Reservations, although not required, can be made a day in advance by calling 202-426-5961. For group tours of 11 to 40 people, reservations must be made via the Woodson Home number.

The establishment of regular house tours is just the beginning. Phase II of the effort will restore the two buildings next to the home, which will support the operation of the Woodson Home National Historic Site and serve as office space for the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, an organization Dr. Woodson founded. Phase III will involve the installation of the interpretive exhibits for the house, including audio and interactive displays

Washingtonian Gives Shaw Credit
In presenting its annual list of the Best of Washington in the June issue, Washingtonian magazine decided that Shaw had a number of “Best” things to offer. In fact, their tip for best retail strategy is to open in Shaw, noting, “Brands looking to connect with millennials and the creative class have identified the Shay development in Shaw as their home base.” One example offered is the Steven Alan store that actually closed its Georgetown location to move to Shaw.

In picking the best, the Washingtonian declared that Espita Mezcaleria had the Best Chips and Salsa in town, since “no other Washington restaurant imports Mexican corn and grinds masa for its chips.” Buttercream Bakeshop’s Happy Camper bars were among the best desserts in Washington, while All Purpose had the Best Pepperoni Pizza. Washingtonian also designated the Columbia Room’s Punch Garden as the Best Outdoor Drink Spot.

In the Washingtonian Reader’s Poll, Compass Coffee won for Best Independent Coffee Shop, Nellie’s Sports Bar was the Best Sports Bar, Columbia Room got the Best Cocktail Bar nod, Right Proper Brewing Company earned Best Brewpub, the 9:30 Club was Best Live-Music Venue, and the Landmark Atlantic Plumbing Cinema was voted the Best Movie Theater in Washington.

Shaw Farmers Market Reopens
Community Foodworks, an organization devoted to providing high-quality fresh food to neighborhoods in the District, reopened its Shaw Farmers Market at Old City Farm and Guild (925 Rhode Island Ave. NW) for the summer. The market, offering fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, bread, gifts, and other treats for humans and dogs alike, from small vendors, will be open every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. through October.

The market has also brought back its Bonus Bucks program, where those on a food support program (SNAP, WIC, Senior Checks) can double the value of the money they spend on food items.

French Quarter Brasserie Opens
The much-anticipated French Quarter Brasserie and Oyster Bar (FQB) has opened at 1544 Ninth St. NW. Neighborhood residents were able to get a sample of its authentic New Orleans cuisine at the Shaw Main Streets Gala in April. FQB offers a happy hour, Monday through Friday, with deeply discounted beers, cocktails, wine, and oysters. Plans call for tables on an outdoor patio and jazz and comedy performances on the second floor.

Shaw Main Streets Open House
Shaw Main Streets will hold a neighborhood Open House on Saturday, June 17, from 1 to 5 p.m., to introduce residents and visitors to what central Shaw’s businesses have to offer. Attendees should expect to see a lot of free food and beverage samples, along with drawings for prizes from dozens of participating businesses.

This event will focus on Shaw businesses in the lower half of Shaw, south of Rhode Island Avenue. Another open house is scheduled for October to showcase neighborhood businesses in the northern portion of the Shaw Main Streets service area. For more information visit

Symposium on Gentrification
The Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Library will host a free symposium entitled “Urban Transformation: Metropolitan Development, Demographic Change and Gentrification” on Saturday, June 24, from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., at the branch, located at 1630 Seventh St. NW.

Given concerns in the city about homelessness and affordable housing, and the recent publication of the Shaw-focused study “Race, Class, and Politics in the Cappuccino City,” this will be a timely discussion of the effects, both positive and negative, of gentrification on Shaw and the rest of the District. The symposium will present panel discussions featuring a mix of neighborhood residents, elected officials, academics, and activists giving their perspective on what local development has brought us and where we should go from here.