Congressional Cemetery’s popular lawn-mowing goats are back.
For the next two weeks, 30 goats will dine on more than 1 1/2 wooded acres of ivy, vines and other invasive plants on the east side of the Hill East cemetery. Visitors can follow signage and visit the goats at their gated buffet from dusk to dawn.
Paul Williams, president of the Association for the Preservation of Historic Congressional Cemetery, said the goats were hired to get rid of invasive species threatening the woods near the cemetery in an organic, pesticide-free way.
“This project combines natural and cultural resources, providing the perfect solution for us since we are so close to the Anacostia River edge,” he said in a statement.
Councilman Charles Allen of Ward 6 said the District was hesitant when the cemetery first hired the goats in 2013.
“We were a little freaked out that there were goats coming into the city,” Allen said. “Luckily, we were able to understand the partnership allows animals that wouldn’t necessarily be in the city, per say, [and] see the educational opportunity for our city, for our students and for our kids.”
Mary Bowen, owner of Browsing Green Goats, which is supplying the animal landscapers, also noted the educational value of the creatures. She told Hill Now that Nadia “The Wonder Goat” and her daughter, Jacqueline, are writing a children’s book that teaches children about agriculture and saving the environment. She hopes to have a release date by Christmas.
Browsing Green Goats arrived early this morning to set up fencing and let the goats out around 11 a.m., Bowen said. After that, the goats manage themselves.
“There’s no union; they don’t take smoke breaks,” she said. “When they come off that trailer, they go right to work.”
Hill resident Danica Stanciu and her children were among the goats’ first visitors.
“It’s a unique thing that doesn’t happen every day so we took the chance,” Stanciu said. “They’re a little bit tamer than we thought. I didn’t expect the opportunity to pet one.”
The northeast Capitol Hill area has seen the District’s largest uptick in crime involving guns this year, a new report shows.
The region, which includes NoMa and the H Street corridor, had 69 gun crimes from Jan. 1 to July 31, according to a District, Measured report released yesterday. The sum is more than double the 32 gun crimes during the same period last year.
The southeast Capitol Hill region, except for Navy Yard, also has seen a jump in gun crime.
The area, which includes Hill East, Barracks Row and Eastern Market, had 41 gun crimes from Jan. 1 to July 31, the report shows. The tally is more than double the 17 gun crimes during the same period last year.
Aside from the northeast Capitol Hill area, only the Brightwood Park, Petworth and Crestwood neighborhoods had more gun violence than the southeast Capitol Hill region.
The spike is gun crime is not unique to these neighborhoods. Data shows that crimes with guns have increased 20 percent throughout the District. Out of 39 neighborhood clusters reviewed by District, Measured, 22 of them saw an increase in gun crimes.
Navy Yard and Southwest are among the neighborhoods that haven’t experienced an influx in gun violence this year, according to the report.
Southwest had 12 gun crimes from Jan. 1 to July 31. During the same period last year, it had 20 such crimes.
Navy Yard had two gun crimes from Jan. 1 to July 31. The neighborhood had three such crimes during the same period last year.
Image via District, Measured
Metro riders in NoMa may notice people in red berets patrolling the platforms this week.
D.C. Guardian Angels, a nonprofit crime prevention organization made up of unarmed citizens, announced in a tweet yesterday that some of its members will patrol the NoMa-Gallaudet University and Rhode Island Metro stations, as well as the Metropolitan Branch Trail.
Patrol members can be spotted with their signature red berets and white shirts. Volunteers are trained to make citizens’ arrests and often take a more physical approach to preventing crime, said Guardian Angels member Aaron Thompson.
Patrols at the NoMa Metro station are part of the organization’s effort to make itself more visible in criminal “hot spots,” he said. Recent homicides in the NoMa area, such as the July 4 Metro stabbing, have encouraged his volunteers to stand watch at Metro stations and participate in local community outreach programs.
“What’s important right now is to encourage young people to join groups like ours instead of street gangs,” Thompson said. “We need people who are concerned about their community to come forward and not be part of the problem, but rather the solution. Police can’t do it by themselves. It takes the community.”
The organization is currently seeking to train young people for lookout roles, he said. People interested in volunteering can email [email protected].
#WashingtonDC Guardian Angels will start patrols on #mbt & NoMa & Rhode metro train station #unsuckdcmetro pic.twitter.com/lntIMgWVip
— DC Guardian Angels (@dcguardianangel) August 4, 2015
Photo via Facebook/Gaurian-Angels-Washington-DC
Two D.C. men were sentenced yesterday for their roles in a shooting that injured one teenager in Southwest earlier this year, according to the D.C. U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Adrian Wade, 20, received a six-year prison term, after he pleaded guilty in D.C. Superior Court to assault with a deadly weapon and possession of a firearm in connection with the shooting.
JaJuan Smith, 18, obtained a two-year prison sentence, after he pleaded guilty to charges of acting as an accessory to the shooting and possessing an unregistered firearm and ammunition. But his sentence was suspended on the condition that he finish 18 months of supervised probation.
The shooting happened Feb. 7 on the 100 block of O Street SW, two blocks west of Nationals Park.
Wade first flashed a gun during an encounter with four juveniles near the Friendly Food Market at 1399 Half St. SW, prosecutors said. The victims then fled down the block.
Soon after, Wade encountered the group again about a block west of the market, prosecutors said. He then fired his gun at them four times, striking a 16-year-old boy in the ankle.
After unloading the shots, Wade handed the gun to Smith, who fled the scene and tossed the weapon in a bush, prosecutors said. Police recovered the gun and matched bullet casings at the scene to the weapon.
Photo via Google Maps
A second-run movie theater is slated to make its debut on Barracks Row in the coming months.
The Miracle Theatre at 535 8th St. SE is expected to begin showing films sometime this fall, the theater has tweeted. National Community Church’s Theater Church currently uses the space for weekend services.
But the cinema has yet to announce exactly when it will start showing second-run flicks.
@eat_dc Thanks! We're excited too. We will be a second run movie theater. No opening date to announce yet, but stay tuned.
— Miracle Theatre (@TheMiracleDC) August 3, 2015
A National Community Church representative couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
The century-old theater, originally called the Meader Theater, was purchased by National Community Church and renamed the Miracle Theatre in 2011. The theater is one of the church’s three D.C. locations.
“We have restored the building’s rich history of a vaudeville show house and movie theater as another place where the church and marketplace intersect,” Theater Church’s website says.
Photo via Google Maps
A family-owned organic grocery store on the H Street corridor is set to close down after about a year in business.
H Street Organic Market at 806 H St. NE will stop selling soy milk, kale chips and other organic foods tomorrow, workers at the store confirmed today. It wasn’t immediately clear what would happen to the space after the store’s departure.
A cashier, who declined to give her name for publication, said the market has been struggling since it opened last year.
“The people, they walk by and they aren’t interested,” she said while pointing out the window. “They think it will be too expensive.”
“It’s too bad because some of them could use it,” she added, referring to the all-natural health foods inside the shop.
The owner of the market couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
The store is discounting all its products by 20 percent until it closes.
A local woman is trying to raise money for D.C. animal charities in memory of her popular Capitol Hill beagle.
Pat Leitner is encouraging locals to donate to Homeward Trails Animal Rescue, People Animals Love and other animal charities in remembrance of her dog, Sandy, who died last Monday. The dog was believed to be about 14 years old.
Over the past two years, Sandy could be spotted at many local parades, sporting events and neighborhood sidewalks. She was also a certified therapy dog with People Animals Love and a Hill Pet of the Week.
“I am grateful for every minute I was able to spend with her, even the last one,” Leitner said in an email.
Leitner’s college friend, Michael Rudolf, wrote an obituary for Sandy. He said he visited her and Sandy a few times each year.
Sandy came from North Carolina, where it is believed she was orphaned by Hurricane Sandy (hence her name) and struggled to survive among the rubble for weeks. Eventually she was taken in by a small, overcrowded shelter — dehydrated, underweight, anemic and suffering from a hernia. Homeward Trails Animal Rescue brought Sandy to the Washington area, giving her a much better chance of being adopted. There she met Pat, and a bond was formed instantly.
With Pat’s help and dedication, Sandy went from being a frail little animal who could barely move, to a robust, lively dog who loved to run and play. Once she was healthy enough, Sandy began her training to be a certified therapy dog with People Animals Love. She completed her training just under a year after she was adopted, and celebrated with a party joined by many of her canine and human friends.
In the months that followed, those friends became more numerous, extending throughout the Hill. Sandy could be found helping patients at Specialty Hospital of Washington, visiting with children in Stanton Park, enjoying a treat at Eastern Market or shopping along Barracks Row. (She especially loved going to Howl To The Chief and Metro Mutts!) She befriended the Marines guarding the barracks, the restaurateurs and shopkeepers and everyone she met along the street.
Sandy was also a Washington Nationals fan, attending as many “Pups in the Park” games as she could. From her seat in right field, she would watch the action, enjoy a box of Cracker Jack and socialize with other fans.
Rudolf said Leitner like will host a memorial for Sandy, but plans have not yet been made.
“Not having Sandy on the Hill will be a loss noticed by many,” Rudolf said. “But no lives are emptier because she is no longer with us. Rather, they are fuller because she shared with us a short bit of her time on Earth.”
Photos courtesy of Michael Rudolf and Pat Leitner
Man Killed in Southwest Identified Cousin as Shooter Before Death, Police Say — Jerome Diggs said after he was shot this week that his cousin, Gary Nathaniel Proctor, was the shooter, according to police. “Yes, Little Gary shot me,” Diggs said, according to a police affidavit. “I didn’t call the police. I don’t think I’m going to make it. I just want to let somebody know who shot me.” [Washington Post]
The Benning Road NE Stench — Liquid that spewed from a garbage truck is suspected of causing a foul smell near Benning Road and 17th Street NE yesterday. [NBC Washington]
Ice Cream Jubilee in Navy Yard Honored — Time Out ranked Ice Cream Jubilee in Navy Yard as the 10th best ice cream in the nation. The site complimented the shop’s view of the Anacostia River and nontraditional flavors, such as caramel popcorn. [Time Out NY]
Deathcab for Cutie Concert on H Street NE? — Googling “events in D.C.” reveals a concert date by indie rock band Death Cab for Cutie today at Khepra’s Raw Food Juice Bar on the H Street corridor. The posting seems to be an error or joke because the band currently is touring in Australia. [Frozen Tropics]
A house used as the main base for a 1970s feminist movement on Capitol Hill has been nominated for historic landmark status.
Local author Robert Pohl, property owners and the D.C. Preservation League nominated the house near Eastern Market to the D.C. Historic Preservation Review Board earlier this month. Nomination papers say an eclectic, 10-room residence at 219 11th St. SE housed 12 members of the Furies Collective, a 1970s lesbian separatist group.
The group of lesbians taught automotive repair, self defense and home restoration classes in an effort to empower women. The Furies Collective also published a national tabloid newspaper called, “The Furies,” and a magazine called, “Motive,” from the home’s basement in 1971.
The operation barely lasted more than a year after the group disbanded in 1972.
“Over the course of the collective’s and the newspaper’s lives, the twelve women explored and sought to resolve a multitude of issues and examined their personal experiences in the lines of their newspaper,” the nomination reads.
At 1114 F St. NE, the Lexington Apartments building this month also was nominated for historic landmark status. Nomination documents argue that the four-story complex showcases a Classical Revival style that influenced the development of an “ethnically, socially, and economically diverse neighborhood in the Northeast quadrant.”
The Historic Preservation Review Board has yet to schedule hearings for either property.
Photos via Google Maps
A local woman is aspiring to map every outdoor public library in the Capitol Hill area, with the help of her neighbors.
Ashleigh Grant and her allies so far have pinpointed 18 “little libraries” — small boxes that look like birdhouses filled with books — on a public Google map. The little libraries are free to the public under the premise that if people remove books from the structures, they will replace them with literature of their own.
Grant said she started the public map after fellow local Meg Biallas asked about little library locations on the “New Hill East” Facebook group.
The Little Free Library organization, which has registered several Capitol Hill libraries, has a map that Grant said is outdated. Unable to find a current map, she took it upon herself to begin crowd-sourcing a public Google map that might prove more helpful to neighborhood bookworms.
“I usually find an interesting book each time that I enjoy and then return to the little library or contribute my own,” she said. “But I don’t have the opportunity to walk every street, so crowd-sourcing the locations of all the little libraries seemed like a perfect way to track down as many locations as possible.”
She posted the Google map to the Facebook group and asked for help. Soon, members had contributed 10 more locations to the map.
“I think this map is a great way to make sure our community knows about all the little libraries our neighbors have worked so hard at building and maintaining,” she said. “It adds to the culture and experience of Capitol Hill.”
Image of map via Google Maps
Residents and business owners in and around Southwest have a chance to voice their opinions about a forthcoming stadium in their community.
The D.C. United soccer team earlier this week released a survey seeking feedback from residents and businesses owners near where their new stadium at Buzzard Point.
The survey asks participants about their interest in attending D.C. United games, as well as what they think about ticket prices and public transportation. Survey takers also are asked about potential stadium features such as local craft beer, mobile phone ticketing systems and an in-house Spanish simulcast.
“As we continue preparations for the new stadium, we are constantly seeking ways to engage our fans and the local community,” said Lindsay Simpson, a representative of D.C. United. “The survey was simply the next step in that strategy so that the input we receive will help us construct a world-class facility that reflects the world-class city we represent.”
The survey contains over 140 questions, but participants only answer select questions based on their answers. The whole survey takes about 10 to 15 minutes to complete.
“So far we’ve received great responses and we are working with our stadium partners to best implement the feedback we’ve received,” Simpson said.
Photo via D.C. United
Permission Granted for Waterfront Park in Southwest — A 3 1/2-acre park on the Southwest waterfront at The Wharf has received a building permit from the District. The park will include plants, pergolas, seating areas and a plaza named for Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton. [SWTLQTC/Washington Business Journal]
A ‘Witness Tree’ on the U.S. Capitol Grounds — A bur oak next to the U.S. Capitol’s Reflecting Pool is a member of the “Witness Tree Protection Program,” according to local tour guide and author Melanie Choukas-Bradley. The National Park Service program has identified the oak as a witness to history. [Washington Post]
Fewer Dropped Calls in Metro Tunnels? — By the end of the year, Metro interim general manager Jack Requa said he expects Metro and wireless carriers to come to an agreement that would leave Metro tunnels with fewer cellular “dead spots.” After an agreement is made, work to enhance cellphone coverage could take as long as four years to complete. [WAMU]
Capitol Hill Agenda (July 28 – Aug. 3) — Two free outdoor movies and a nighttime 5K run are coming to the Capitol Hill area this week. [Hill Now]
Motorists and cyclists planning to travel near Union Station this weekend may need to consider a new route.
The block of First Street NE between G Street and Massachusetts Avenue NE, adjacent to Union Station, will be closed for reconstruction work this weekend, according to the District Department of Transportation.
DDOT will close both lanes on Friday from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. The closure times will repeat Saturday and Sunday nights, weather permitting.
Signs will direct motorists around the block via North Capitol Street. But drivers are advised to find alternative routes.
DDOT predicts moderate-to-heavy delays in the area.
Photos via Google Maps
A man suspected of snatching a package from outside the door of a Hill East home has appeared on video.
A theft happened at a house on the 1700 block of A Street SE about 6:15 p.m. on July 18, police said. The area is about two blocks from RFK Stadium.
Video police released over the weekend in connection with the theft shows a tall man walking down the sidewalk in front of the home. The man then looked at the residence, quickly turned off the sidewalk and walked through the home’s front gate, disappearing from view.
When the man reappeared, he held a medium-sized brown package. The man then left the property, appearing to take drags from a cigarette as he walked down the sidewalk.
Crime Solvers of Washington, D.C., currently offers a reward of up to $1,000 to anyone who provides information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for a crime committed in the District of Columbia. Your assistance is appreciated by your community.
Anyone who can identify these individuals or who has knowledge of this incident should take no action but call police at 202-727-9099 or text your tip to the Department’s TEXT TIP LINE to 50411.
Video via YouTube/Metropolitan Police Department
Man Killed in Southeast-Southwest Freeway Car Crash — One man was killed and another man was injured in a single-car crash on the Southeast-Southwest Freeway near South Capitol Street. [WUSA]
Gun in the Library of Congress — A former D.C. police officer was arrested for trying to take a loaded, unregistered gun into the Library of Congress. Yong H. Ahn, 55, said the revolver was his off-duty weapon, but he failed to provide credentials or a license. [WTOP]
Psych Exam for Stabbing Suspect — Jasper Spires, the main suspect in a fatal stabbing at the NoMa Metro station on July 4, has been ordered to undergo a psychological examination. Judge Robert E. Morin of the D.C. Superior Court also said he found sufficient evidence to retain Spires in jail until trial. [Washington Post]
Keeping it Green — The Wylie Street Community Garden in the H Street corridor is safe from development for now. The H Street Community Development Corporation said it does not have “immediate plans” to develop the land, but that it could devise a plan to develop within a year. [Hill Now]