themail.gif (3487 bytes)

April 23, 2006


Dear Divested:

This city’s administration has a policy of divesting the city of some of its most important assets, with its most valuable public buildings at the top of the list of the properties that it wants to dispose of. The Kelly administration pushed forward with the foolish idea of ridding the government of its finest early twentieth century building, the Wilson Building, built 1904-1908. Now the Williams administration wants to dispose of the government’s finest mid-twentieth century building, the Mies van der Rohe-designed Martin Luther King, Jr., central library, built 1968-1972, which Alexander Padro has called “the most distinguished building ever built by the District government.” Next up for disposal are the school buildings that have anchored our neighborhoods.

In the library case, the Williams administration has no good argument for replacing the van der Rohe building with an office box to be built on the awkward triangular site the administration has designated on the old convention center’s footprint. The administration has made some demonstrably false arguments — that the current building could not be retrofitted for modern uses such as computers (of course it could be, just as the Wilson Building, the New York Public Library, and the Library of Congress have been); that a new building would be more affordable (though even the administration’s own worst-case estimate of renovating the current library is millions of dollars less than its best-case estimate of building a new library); that it would involve less disruption to services to build a new library than to renovate the current one (though there is no reason to believe that a well-planned renovation would involve more disruption than closing the current library and moving all of its collections and services to a new building); and that the federal government has dedicated $30 million to building a new central library (it hasn’t — the $30 million can be spent on anything in the library system, including renovating the current building). But the administration, which has labored to prevent any public discussion of its plan in the past, has not even attempted to make an argument for why its plan should be rushed through the city council as part of the budget process, without a thorough public airing of the alternatives. At Saturday’s hastily called “town meeting” on the plan, Mayor Williams showed ugly, uninspired "conceptual" drawings of his proposed new library, but cautioned that there were no architectural plans and that the conceptual drawings were only to show that it was possible to squeeze a library into the oddly shaped parcel. (To be fair, that isn’t exactly how he phrased it.) The mayor’s budget for a new library — again, a best-case budget — comes up $40 million short for financing, but the administration and its supporters airily assured Councilmember Patterson, who held the meeting, that it would be easier to fill that gap by raising contributions from donors to build a new building than it would be to raise money to preserve and renovate a building that is important in our city’s architectural history, like the Martin Luther King, Jr., Library.

Nevertheless, this is going to happen, and the council will pass it as part of the budget support act on May 9, unless councilmembers act quickly to remove it from the budget, and to demand that it be submitted as a separate bill. Councilmember Patterson has indicated that she may be inclined to recommend that, but unless she acts soon, and unless she is supported by Chairman Cropp and other councilmembers, it will happen, and we haven’t heard anything from any of them. If you want to weigh in with your councilmember, this is your only chance.

Gary Imhoff,
Dorothy Brizill,

PS: Because of a glitch in my E-mail program, I’ve lost the E-mails to themail that were sent on Thursday and early Friday. If you submitted something that isn’t in this issue, please send it again. Sorry for the inconvenience. — Gary Imhoff


Convention Center Won’t Provide FY2005 Financial Statements
Lawrence Sprowls, Dupont Circle,

After nine requests over two months, the Washington Convention Center Authority (WCCA) has failed to provide FY2005 financial statements to me or to post them on its web site. The WCCA’s fiscal year ended September 2005. My first two February E-mails to Theresa DuBois, WCCA Community Relations Manager, were ignored. She responded to a voice-mail message by writing that the annual report was “at the printer” and would be posted to the web site in three to four weeks. Huh? The 2004 annual report is a PDF and the financial statements were obviously prepared on a word processor.

A request to Reba Pittman, Acting General Manager, for the information was ignored. On March 9 I E-mailed a FOIA request to Reginald Smith, FOIA Officer. Ignored. Follow-up phone call? Ignored. Mr. Smith responded to a third message by telling me that he knew about the DuBois request and that the WCCA had fifteen days to respond to any FOIA request. OK, so March 24 came and went. Today is April 22.

In FY2004, WCCA survived on a $62-million taxpayer subsidy. It wants a taxpayer-subsidized hotel. But, nearly seven months after the close of the fiscal year, it won’t disclose its finances to the public.


DC Library System (Not)
Ron Leve, Dupont Circle,

I guess you can call me one of Tony Williams’ 100,000. I moved into the District two years ago and attended Saturday’s “town meeting” at the MLK library, as I’ve been appalled at the state of the DC Public Library System — even allowing for having been spoiled by the outstanding system in Howard County, where I previously lived. What fascinated me at the meeting was this fantasy world of anthropomorphism that pervaded the discussions. Much was of the current situation was laid at the feet of the MLK building, while great wonders were to be achieved by a 21st-century building at the old convention center. Now I grant that a new spirit among the professional staff might result from the improvements brought by a modern building (or a renovated MLK, for that matter), but the same old gang would be in charge, the ones who have allowed the MLK and the branches to so seriously deteriorate in the first place and who haven’t managed to provide temporary facilities for the four branches currently being renovated.

Until Saturday, I hadn’t understood the surreptitious manner in which the proposal for the new building has occurred, even before groups appointed to study the situation have completed their reports or, as I gather in the case of one set up by the city council, even been appointed. As someone stated, “what’s the rush”? I don’t have much knowledge of municipal finance, but the $180 million proposal seemed awfully shaky, especially the likelihood that $40 million could be raised privately. No more than conceptual drawings are available for consideration for this massive investment. And, the real downer for me was a sentence read from the proposed legislation that the mayor would delegate total responsibility to the Library Board of Trustees for the project.

While I generally favor renovation of the current MLK, I cannot even bring myself to favor that proposal, let alone the new building, with the current Library management. Can you imagine their managing either project, involving at least $100 million dollars, successfully? I certainly can’t. It may seem wishy-washy, but supporting anything that’s on the table requires an act of faith for which there is no foundation.


Use of Excess School Property
A. Loikow, Cleveland Park,

As a longtime DC resident, I am very concerned about the city’s selling public property that we might need in the future, but will be unable to ever afford to repurchase. The size of the school system and the number of schools needed is directly related to the quality of the system. It is clear that a large part of the decrease in the number of students in the DC public school system is caused by parents’ concerns about the quality of the education the system offers. As the system improves, children going to private schools will come back to the public system.

In looking at whether to retain public school buildings, we tend to only look at current public school enrollment. Instead, we should look at our total population, including the total number of children, demographic trends, and whether we want to increase the city’s population. School properties are located in neighborhoods all over the city to serve the residents of those neighborhoods conveniently. When we don’t need the schools at a point in time, we should look to retaining public ownership of the property and finding appropriate public uses for those properties. Land in the city is a very scarce commodity and the government should be very stingy about giving it up to private developers for short term profit. Once it is gone from the public inventory, we will be very unlikely to get it ever again.

Schools that are scheduled to be closed should first be leased to a public charter school if at all possible. Charter schools are public schools, but just subject to different oversight. It is much to be preferred that the public funds they get for facilities go to improving District owned buildings. If by any chance the charter school leasing such a building closes, the public funds that went to improving it will still be of benefit to the public, as they will have gone to improve a district owned building. In the future, whether the building is used by the public school system, a public charter school, or a District government agency doesn’t really matter so long as the building stays in the public inventory to be used by the citizens of the District of Columbia in whatever is the most appropriate public use at the time that is compatible with the needs and desires of the neighborhood in which it is located.


How to Tell Who’s on First
Justin Swain,

[Re: Who’s on First?, Joan Eisenstodt, themail, April 19] What addresses to use when reporting incidents occurring in alleys? As a member of the DCMP, when this question was discussed at a winter ANC meeting with Dupont Circle residents and business owners the best response was:

Occupants or managers of buildings where the rear of the building or property also faces an alley can assist crime reporting by placing a sign on the back of the building or structure behind the building closest to and facing the alley. The sign should easily readable in the alley. The sign needs to display the building number and street name of the front of the building.

To assist neighbors in reporting incidents, residents or tenants or property managers should create a sketch of the alley with the street names and building numbers included. Distribute the sketch or map of the alley to occupants of the affected buildings. The goal is to have this reliable and convenient reference near the phone for reporting events with in an alley. If one needs to report an incident while in an alley, the alley facing sign will assist your cell-phone call for police assistance. Solutions to reoccurring problems may require proactive citizen action.


Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way
Jamal Turner,

Lead, follow, or get out of the way. That may be the recommendation in the September 12 Democratic Primary election for a certain at-large council member from Ward 3 heading up the District of Columbia Council Committee on the Judiciary. Can we do better in 2006? I read with interest, utter shock, and at times comic relief at some of the E-mail articles that were posted on themail in support of the DC Council’s Judiciary Committee Chairman’s lackadaisical approach to legislating and in responding to the public’s overwhelming concern in reducing crime in the nation’s capital. The distinguished at large council member’s attempts to deliberately refuse a timely review of and public hearing for the Omnibus Public Safety Act of 2005, Bill 16-247 (see the bill and summary at are incredulous and border on irresponsibility and are almost scandalous in his seeming disdain and concern for the people of the District of Columbia and their need for greater crime enforcement and crime reduction.

By ignoring the need for a timely pubic hearing, did the at-large council member from Ward 3 expect that the citizens, police, and government officials would not notice so that the entire bill would be allowed to languish in committee? Or does he have some beef with the mayor who submitted the initial proposal for the Crime Bill in an effort to give more teeth and bite to the law? Is this what citizens are to expect in the new millennium, the advanced technological fast paced 21st Century? We all realize that there is a need for greater crime prevention, deterrents, and alternatives to crime. We all appreciate and welcome a comprehensive approach to reducing crime by improving education, job/workforce training, vocational education, affordable/workforce housing, youth/recreation programs, accessible drug treatment, affordable and accessible healthcare, and the like. This is a must.

We want to show some compassion when we can, but we cannot spend all of our time being sad about the chronic offender’s childhood horrors when everyday citizens — regardless of race, creed, color, gender, ethnicity, nationality, persuasion, or social class — are being terrorized just blocks or inches from police stations, The White House, the Capitol, the Monument, Freedom Plaza, the grocery store, their homes, even ballet schools in Ward 4. But sometimes you just need to put a hurting on the incorrigible criminals that do not value life, limb, or property of others or themselves. We have to get serious about crime and lock a few recidivists, male and female, up. Lead, follow, or get out of the way.

Or just maybe the two-term elected official has his head buried in the sand and has lost touch with the city’s electorate that is crying for sincere and effective leadership, good government, and reform? Perhaps the Judiciary Committee chair should turn on the news or read the newspaper to see the incredible and horrific crimes committed on his watch as citizens beg for relief and the police plea for additional resources to do their job effectively. Today’s criminal is even shooting at cops, using armor piercing bullets, striking grandmothers and grandmothers, attacking kids, and committing crimes in broad daylight. Is this the time for the Council to drag its feet on major legislation and give criminals a free ride and a holiday to do as they please? But then, isn’t this the same council member that has shirked his obligation and responsibility to review the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) after several high profile deaths? What should one expect then when it comes to more issues under his purview?

There should be a rule against holding up important bills that conceivably directly impact the citizens’ safety and well being. However, conversely, these concerned citizens sounded off in the April 20, themail against moving the bill forward for a host of reasons they felt take over a year to work through. Timeliness and responsible leadership may no longer be in vogue. It seems like it would be difficult for elected officials to maintain the public trust and build bridges between the government and the community. By forfeiting a timely review of the proposed legislation and holding a public hearing, is a subtle message being sent to the dedicated cops that give their lives to fight violence and greed and try to solve crimes to reduce the rate of homicide and theft of property that government does not care? Is this the way to show District citizens that the administration cares about all the citizens in all eight wards in the District? Can we afford this type of leadership that procrastinates on getting bills before the public or perhaps just doesn’t know how to do his job as well as his predecessors?

Surely it is time for some elected officials to move on if they unable to see that some communities are under siege with crime and are desperate for reasonable measures and take action. How many killings, rapes, carjackings, burglaries, and thefts must go on before the leadership makes things happen and champions public safety for the people? To be sure, in some neighborhoods fighting and solving crime do matter. Maybe there will be a coup or mutiny on the Judiciary Committee to get the bill before the community so that DC residents can weigh in. On the job training for this Committee Chair with such awesome responsibility obviously isn’t working and he needs to be replaced as its head. This is no time for procrastination and shyness toward duty.

I don’t support mandatory sentences and some of the other aspects of the bill, but the citizens deserve an opportunity to comment on the proposal right now. Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners, the DC Federation of Civic Associations, DC Federation of Citizens Associations, ANC Assembly, PTAs, individual civic association leaders, police support groups, and union, business, faith community, youth, and education leaders need demand that this bill be brought to life. Instead of DC’s spending a lot of time figuring out ways to drive churches out of communities because of parking, let’s be more ambitious in finding the wherewithal to drive crime out of the Metropolitan Washington area and give the people a break.

As I said in a previous article I submitted to themail, it’s not about race and class in the 2006 elections, but about qualifications, leadership, competence, and the ability to connect with people and "get it done." A. Scott Bolden, candidate for at-large DC council, had it right in his comments. A relatively young voter in Ward 7, I am beginning to agree with that assessment. We cannot spend all of our time being compassionate about the chronic offender’s childhood horrors when everyday citizens regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, persuasion, or social class are being terrorized just blocks from such places as police stations, The White House, the Capitol, the Monument, Freedom Plaza, the grocery store, and their homes. We have to get serious about crime and lock a few recidivists up. Do you hear footsteps, Mr. Judiciary Committee chair? Lead, follow, or get out of the way, councilmember. Can’t we do better? Get it done.


Expect a Sea of Change in 2006
Kathryn A. Pearson-West,

The political landscape in the District of Columbia is about to change tremendously and the voters seem to be ready and eager for it. That’s a good thing, a good sign for progress and accountability. Had the sponsors of the citizens’ term limits initiative envisioned an election like long ago, they may not have felt the need to impose term limits and incite the council to revoke the passed initiative. This year, there seem to be self imposed term limits, though one or two elected officials may need a little hint to go on primary election day.

New blood is a given in the mayor’s and council chair’s positions this year as well as for the council seats in Wards 3, 5, and 6 because some of the elected officials are seeking reelection and one is retiring. It is a likely possibility that one two term incumbent might tumble in one of this year’s races if the current momentum is any indication and the leadership void continues. If qualifications and ability rule, then the incumbent is destined to be replaced overwhelmingly. There will be an at-large council seat on the ballot in September. There is also a council member up for reelection in Ward 1. And in November, the president of the school board and the District 3 representative will not be on the ballot. There will be a sea of change in 2006.

Candidate forums, increasingly held by the ward Democratic organizations, are sparking interest in the very viable candidates. Also, the proliferation of candidates’ posters in well manicured yards and in windows throughout the city makes the various elections even more dynamic and inspiring. There have been quite a few forums held for the mayor’s position, but few for the Chairman’s race and the at large race. The Cleveland Park Civic Association and the Ward 8 Democrats jumped at the opportunity early to sponsor elections for that position. Kalorama Citizens Association and the Ward 8 Dems took on the at-large council races leading the way in the forum industry.

Recently the Ward 3 and Ward 4 Democratic Committees (Robert Brandon and Dwayne Toliver, chairpersons, respectively) joined together to sponsor a candidates’ forum at Wilson Senior High School (home of the Tigers and where my son graduated) in Ward 3. This forum was for both council chair and at-large council candidates. The turnout was not as large as one may have imagined, but it was a good venue to get a good look at the candidates. My reason for traveling from Ward 5 to the forum was not just to support a particular candidate or to learn more about their vision and abilities. Nor was it to experience the nostalgia of once going to PTA meetings at Wilson. I was also there to see whether the much heralded discussion in DC Watch’s themail and in the community about race and class in the election would be an obvious factoring the debate. The jury may be still out on that. If you live in a ward where your candidate is running for office, you expect some of the voters to come out to cheer them on or to at least establish a presence in their favor. But people came from throughout the city and the audience was quite diverse. Blacks cheered for whites, whites cheered for blacks, and some kept poker faces.

No matter who clapped for whom, the presentations by the candidates were intriguing. Over the years I have observed councilmember Kathy Patterson to be a responsible and hardworking legislator, always doing her homework and very thorough. However, this was the first time I had seen councilmember Vincent Gray in a forum, and I must admit I was impressed and found his answers to be sensible and him very intelligent and resourceful. These are two strong candidates and it may have to result in the toss of a coin to pick one of the two exceptional leaders. It will be interesting to see how many votes each candidate gets from their ward. Will it be a test of wards and geography — east of the river vs. west of the park — or will it be about who can best serve in the position?

No one is talking about male versus female in the race for chair and that shows how far DC and the sexes have come. The question becomes who can work best with the other council members and keep the peace and be a consensus builder? Gray and Patterson may be equally matched on ability and experience in the city, but which one can best pull the city together and move the council and the people’s agenda best? Also, in the event that the mayor is unable to serve, which would you prefer to take the mayor’s place in his/her absence? Isn’t the council chair the second in command if something happens to the mayor? Who would be able to best represent the city and meet the needs of all the citizens? Good questions to consider when voting one’s conscience.

The at-large race is a different animal. Running against the two-term Democrat is an energetic, articulate, knowledgeable Democratic challenger and mover and shaker in the District of Columbia that makes things happen. At the forum, I found A. Scott Bolden to be brilliant, sensitive to the needs of diverse groups, and charming, with leadership skills written all over him. He didn’t appear to be weak or shy like some I’ve seen and was strong. He was quite confident and able. Perception is reality. He was on top of the issues and was not intimidated by his surroundings like some candidates tend to be as they go from ward to ward, community to community. He didn’t wince at controversial issues and explained his positions whenever there was any doubt. He was not flawless, but he showed that he is an exceptional candidate and leader. He was probably too gentle that evening.

This should have been the time for Bolden to hammer away at the need for improved oversight with the Emergency Medical Services. This was the time to lash out about why the crime bill was stuck in the Judiciary Committee for over a year as if the residents of the District of Columbia were not mature enough to judge the merits and constitutionality of it themselves. This was the time to make an issue of allowing a bill to languish in committee while people are dying in the streets from crime. This was the time to call for action and let the residents see what’s on the table in the bill. This was the time to ask the incumbent whether he was able. This was the time to ask whether the incumbent was cognizant of the fact that there are too many killings and carjackings in the paper and that the people could use a little relief from the carnage and violence. This was the time to ask what Emancipation Day means to the incumbent and why he voted against it repeatedly.

The Ward 3/Ward 4 forum was a good one and the ward Democratic organizations are planning a joint forum for the mayoral candidates in May. Ward 5 Dems plan to sponsor one for at large and chair in May. This forum was moderated by the illustrious Colbert King, Deputy Chief, Editorial Page, The Washington Post. The panelists that questioned the candidates consisted of Dorothy Brizill, DCWatch, and Kathryn Sinzinger, The Common Denominator. Both presented very fair and interesting questions. They did not appear to be partial to any candidate or any ward. The audience also got to submit questions on cards. Too bad there was no one there to promote the University of the District of Columbia in these discussions.

I am looking forward to the months ahead as the campaigning continues and residents get to meet and greet the candidates. I am looking forward to going ward to ward to see how the candidates do in different venues and monitor whether their positions change. Instead of race or class, the election may be more about power. Which wards will turn out voters and claim the victory with their overwhelming turnout? Which ward will be able to claim the ability to be King or Queen maker, regardless of race, creed, color, gender, and so forth? Who will call the shots in this year’s election? The number of residents in each ward is fairly equal. Who will get their voters out? Will there be a surprise in the turnout? Will Ward 8 show that it is equal in political strength and interest to Ward 3? Will east of the river coalesce with west of the park to support the same candidate? Whatever the verdict, we at least know that A. Scott Bolden will be everywhere in this city making his case for the citizens’ votes and to share a collective vision of the city. He will be there working with everyday people to help shape the city. That is what I am learning from these forums. The message is clear. Leadership and ability are everything.



DCPS Community Meeting on Facilities Master Plan, April 24 and following
Roxanne Evans,

The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) will host a second round of community forums beginning Monday, April 24, to review highlights of the data and findings that have been assembled for the district’s new Facilities Master Plan. Six sessions are planned, including one covering DCPS high schools, one for middle and junior high schools, and four for elementary schools. During the first round of meetings with the public, which ran from March 29 through April 6, DCPS received input from community members on potential plans for school consolidations and modernizations. The sessions also explored the future use of buildings that will no longer be used by DCPS for traditional K-12 enrollment. For the first time, DCPS introduced the use of an automated, interactive polling process that allowed for real-time recording and tabulating of responses to several facilities-related questions and issues. The technology enabled every community member present to have the opportunity to share views and opinions.

In the next series of meetings, DCPS facilities staff and consultants will review data collected to date, along with findings regarding the conditions of school buildings and the proposed restructuring of the district’s 16.2-million-square-foot building inventory. Recommendations on the use of facilities, which are now being developed in response to the requirements of the Master Education Plan released earlier this year, will be presented by Superintendent Janey to the Board of Education. A final plan will be submitted for review and approval by the board.

All meetings will be held from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Elementary school meetings, by planning area: Monday, April 24, Randle Highlands Elementary School (Areas B & C); Tuesday, April 25, Cleveland Elementary School (Areas F & G); Wednesday, April 26, Ludlow-Taylor Elementary School (Areas A & D); Thursday, April 27, Takoma Elementary School (Areas E & H). Middle schools meeting, district-wide: Wednesday, May 3, Backus Middle School. High schools meeting, district-wide: Thursday, May 4, Ballou High School.


Ward 5 Council Candidates Forum, April 24
Hazel Thomas,

The Ward 5 Democrats organization will host a Ward 5 council candidates forum on Monday, April 24, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Bertie Backus Middle School, 5100 South Dakota Avenue, NE. Backus School is located on South Dakota Avenue between Hamilton and Galloway Streets near the Ft. Totten Metro Station. The program will begin with a brief business meeting and conclude with announcements about upcoming economic development and community projects; however, the focus of the meeting will be the Ward 5 Council candidates forum. The Forum is planned to give Ward 5 residents an opportunity to review the key platform issues of all the candidates competing for the Ward 5 City Council seat. Critical topics to be addressed include: housing, economic development, employment, public safety issues, youth, family, seniors and retiree issues. Each of the candidates will have two minutes to give an opening statement, followed by questions from a media panel, and questions from the audience. The forum will conclude with a closing statement from each candidate.

As of April 19, the persons who have filed their candidacy for Ward 5 Council seat with the DC Board of Elections or the Office of Campaign Finance are: Joe Harris, III, Regina James, Ron Magnus, Bruce Marshall, Miriam Moore, Audrey Ray, Steve Rynecki, Debbie Smith, Carolyn Steptoe, Harry Thomas, Jr., Frank Wilds, Vera Winfield, and Raenelle Zapata.

This is the second in a series of candidate forums hosted by Ward 5 Democrats. On March 27, the organization hosted an audience of 300 at Israel Baptist Church to presentations from the five primary candidates running for mayor. On May 22, the organization will present candidates vying for the At-Large and Council Chairman seats at McKinley Technology School, 4th and T Streets, NE (near the New York –Florida Avenues METRO station, just north of the FEDX office. For more information about the Ward 5 Democrats’ Mayoral Forum, contact Anita Bonds, Chair of the Ward 5 Democrats at 492-1199, or Hazel Bland Thomas, Press Officer, at 491-4295.


Colonel Matthew Bogdanos, April 25
Lois Kirkpatrick,

The Fairfax County Public Library invites you to a free event on Tuesday, April 25 at 7:30 p.m. at the McLean Community Center. Colonel Matthew Bogdanos will discuss leading the mission to recover antiquities stolen from the Iraq National Museum after the fall of Baghdad in 2003. Bogdanos will sign copies of his book, Thieves of Baghdad: One Marine’s Passion for Ancient Civilizations and the Journey to Recover the World’s Greatest Stolen Treasures, which will also be on sale. Bogdanos’ royalties will be donated to the Iraq National Museum. For event details, go to


DC Mayor and Politics at Woman’s National Democratic Club, April 27
Pat Bitondo,

On Thursday, April 27, the Woman’s National Democratic Club will hold a panel speaker luncheon on "DC Mayors and Politics, Past, Present and Future." Jonetta Rose Barras, radio partner of Kojo Nnamdi, is currently a political analyst for NPR affiliate, WAMU-FM radio. She is nationally known for authoring two recent books. Dorothy Brizill is the Executive Director of DC Watch, the on-line newspaper that covers local social and political trends. Terry Lynch is the Executive Director of the Downtown Cluster of Congregations. All three panelists are perfectly situated to explain the labyrinthine world of mayoral politics and what is going on in this fast-changing city of ours. Woman’s National Democratic Club, 1536 New Hampshire Avenue, NW. $25 for nonmembers, $20 for members. For reservations, contact or telephone 232-7363. Bar opens at 11:30 a.m. Lunch is served at 12:30 p.m.


Greatest Mexican Muralists, April 29
Barbara Ruesga-Pelayo,

The Cultural Institute of Mexico will sponsor an all-day seminar on the Greatest Mexican Muralists on Saturday April 29, 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Cultural Institute of Mexico, 2829 16th Street, NW. In cooperation with the Smithsonian Associates and Smithsonian Latino Center. Reservations: 633-1240, fax 786-2477. Tickets: general admission $141, RAP and CIM Members $95, Senior Members $86. Gregorio Luke, director of the Museum of Latin American Art in Los Angeles, shares his passion for Mexican murals. Luke has lectured extensively on Mexican art in museums and universities in Mexico, Europe, and the United States. Life-size images bring to life the artworks of Mexican muralists Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, and David Alfaro Siqueiros. Including a Mexican breakfast and lunch.


themail@dcwatch is an E-mail discussion forum that is published every Wednesday and Sunday. To subscribe, to change E-mail addresses, or to switch between HTML and plain text versions of themail, use the subscription form at To unsubscribe, send an E-mail message to with “unsubscribe” in the subject line. Archives of past messages are available at

All postings should also be submitted to, and should be about life, government, or politics in the District of Columbia in one way or another. All postings must be signed in order to be printed, and messages should be reasonably short — one or two brief paragraphs would be ideal — so that as many messages as possible can be put into each mailing.

Send mail with questions or comments to
Web site copyright ©DCWatch (ISSN 1546-4296)