Save Shaw Middle School Effort Takes Off
A movement has started to preserve the Shaw Junior High School site for a future middle school for the neighborhood. Named Save Shaw Middle School (#SaveShawMS), the campaign was sparked when Mayor Bowser announced that DC Public Schools (DCPS) planned to take the Shaw Junior High site and use it for a new Banneker Academic High School. The new movement wants to preserve the site for the Shaw community and as the location for a much-needed neighborhood middle school.
The campaign started on Saturday afternoon, Nov. 3, with a rally of over 50 people at the Shaw school site. In addition to neighborhood parents and residents, the rally was attended by Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen and Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans, along with Joe Weedon, Ward 6 representative to the DC State Board of Education, to show their support for a new Shaw middle school.
The campaign got a boost when the Education Committee of the DC Council held a public roundtable on “DCPS’ Plans for Shaw Junior High School Campus and Benjamin Banneker Academic High School” on Nov. 15. Dozens of community leaders and residents came to testify that it was critical that the neighborhood’s elementary schools feed into a middle school located on the Shaw Junior High School site.
Witnesses included Jessica Sutter, the recently elected Ward 6 representative to the DC State Board of Education, who expressed her support for establishing a new middle school on the Shaw Junior High site. Representatives of the 21st Century School Fund and experts on urban school facilities provided statements of how the community and DCPS could both meet their goals on the Shaw site.
The #SaveShawMS campaign is gaining momentum. A number of advisory neighborhood commissions, including 6E, 2F and 5E, have passed resolutions supporting the aims of the campaign. Neighborhood groups providing formal statements of support include the Central Shaw Neighborhood Association, LeDroit Park Civic Association, Bates Area Civic Association, Logan Circle Community Association, Dupont Circle Community Association, Shaw Dupont Citizens Alliance and Westminster Neighborhood Association.
The parent/teacher organizations of the elementary schools that would feed into a Shaw middle school, including Seaton and Garrison, have also given their approval to the #SaveShawMS movement. There is a Facebook page and Twitter account for the campaign as well as an online petition that has already gained over 1,000 signatures. You can sign the petition by going to Save Shaw Middle School at www.change.org.
Shaw Celebrates Small Business Saturday
On Saturday morning, Nov. 24, Shaw Main Streets held a Shaw Ribbon Cutting event to welcome new businesses to the neighborhood. The ribbon cutting was also a commemoration of Small Business Saturday, a national event held annually to encourage holiday shoppers to patronize small retail businesses. The ribbon cuttings started at the newly opened Marriott Courtyard and Residence Inn hotels on the northwest corner of Ninth and L streets NW. Councilmembers Anita Bonds and Kenyan McDuffie were on hand to cut the first ribbon.
The Shaw Ribbon Cutting Express, as the limo van transporting the contingent was dubbed, then carried the group to cut ribbons at the Green Almond Pantry (1314½ Ninth St.) and &Pizza/Broccoli Bar and Mason Dixie Biscuit Company on the 1800 block of Seventh Street. The group cut ribbons at ModCloth and Nicecream at the southwest corner of Eighth Street and Florida Avenue; then, moving around the corner, the plant store Rewild and the Turning Natural juice bar on the 1900 block of Ninth Street. Finally, the Shaw Ribbon Cutting Express ended its tour at F45 Training, an exercise space at 1020 U St.
The celebration of Shopping Small continues through December with $25,000 worth of “Shaw Bucks,” $5 coupons valid at a number of Shaw businesses. The Shaw Bucks can be picked up at locations throughout the neighborhood and clipped from the Shaw Main Streets ad on the back cover of this month’s Mid-City DC.
Washingtonian Readers Show Love to Shaw Restaurants
The recently released Washingtonian Readers’ Poll put Shaw restaurants in a prominent position. The Dabney won the poll for Best DC Restaurant. It also came on top in the category of Best American Restaurant, with Shaw’s Unconventional Diner coming in second. Blagden Alley’s Tiger Fork also won for the city’s Best Chinese Restaurant. Shaw also has a notable position in The Washingtonian’s list of Dishes of the Year, which includes The Dabney’s Sugar Toads, San Lorenzo’s rabbit pappardelle, the quiche at Convivial and Service Bar’s barrel-aged Scranton Cocktail.
Miracle on Seventh Street Greets Another Holiday Season
The Drink Company is celebrating the holidays with the fourth version of its Miracle on Seventh Street pop-up bar. This year, the bar is built on a theme of pandas in the snow. With sprigs of mistletoe strategically placed above, the bars serve new holiday-themed drinks including the Santa Bei Bei and a John Cena Christmas. Perhaps the most dazzling room this year is the one devoted to Hanukkah, with enormous murals of the National Zoo pandas among Star of David lights and matzo box covers. For the first time, a photo booth was set up, allowing guests to commemorate their visit to the pop-up.
Hanumanh Restaurant Opening
Shaw will get its first Laotian restaurant in December. Brought to Seventh Street by chefs Seng Luangrath and Bobby Pradachith of the renowned Thip Khao in Columbia Heights, Hanumanh will offer dishes such as aromatic herbal pounded salads, fresh steamed fish and items from its charcoal grill. The proprietors “wanted a place where we can present genuine Lao dishes with no limits to our creativity.” The restaurant will have a full bar, with drinks matching the Laotian food, and a summer garden.