Thursday, August 30, 2012

Picture This: Ft. Totten Photo Stream

  Ahhh the end of summer...a time to ease back into your normal life and reflect on your travels, outdoor fun, vacation, staycation or the fact you didn't do a thing!  And what better way to reflect on your summer than helping us update our Flickr Stream and share photos of our community?  What we are looking for you ask? Well it's pretty simple, any picture pertaining to the neighborhood that you would like everyone/anyone to see.  This can be from a walk you took, an event held nearby, your home, your pets, development, anything that has a direct connection to our community. We will use these photos to update our photo stream, and give everyone access to them as an archive. Hopefully we have people out there who have some talent, a good eye, and would like to share it with the neighborhood.  Also of note, we may use some of these photos in blog posts as applicable, especially if it is from an event where we were unable to get coverage, or even feature particularly relevant or interesting photos.  So, if you are interested shoot us a message at TheTottenLife at and we will be sure to add your pictures.  So with that please help spread the word, and show the rest of The District what a great neighborhood we live in!

**Note: You retain all rights to pictures provided to the photo stream, and pictures can be removed at any time per your request. We also do not profit from this blog, nor will we utilize you photographs for profit**

Rhode Island Avenue Fall Fest

And now for something completely different...
  It has been announced that Friends of RIA NE (a local organization focused on the development of RIA NE) will be hosting the First Annual (hopefully) Rhode Island Avenue Fall Fest on Saturday September 22, 2012, Noon – 4pm at the intersection of Rhode Island and South Dakota Ave's NE.  This festival will provide local neighborhoods a chance to celebrate the coming fall with some Rita's, art demonstrations with Art Enables, lunch with DC BRau at Lace on The Avenue, games, and more!  Admission is free, and the whole family is encouraged to attend.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

CM McDuffie's Response

  After several days of community outcry, CM McDuffie has provided an initial response on his facebook page on the issue of the Ft. Totten Trail.  Hopefully we get updates on the status, and get the publicity that other neighborhoods get with their problems.  I'd like to extend a thank you to CM McDuffie for hearing our concerns.  We look forward to a more detailed response in the near future.  This initial response is not the end, I urge all of us to continue pressuring our elected representatives until an acceptable solution is resolved.  

  Our office is aware of the recent spike in crime near the Ft. Totten trail. We have been proactive in addressing this issue and have been in contact with both Park Police and Congresswomen Norton’s office to ensure its addressed appropriately. We have specifically asked for more police presence, increased lighting and a more aggressive vegetation management plan. As we receive inform
ation from Park Police and the Congresswomen’s office we will update the community. This issue is a top priority for our office and we will work vigorously to ensure residents can continue to feel safe when using the trail.

If you have further questions, please contact Tim Clark.

Tim Clark
Constituent Services Coordinator
Kenyan McDuffie, Ward 5 Councilmember
(202) 724-8028 (Office)
(202) 724-8076 (Fax)
The John Wilson Building
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Suite 410
Washington, DC 20004 "

US Park Police Alerts

In light of the new issues taking place around the Ft. Totten Metro, I'd encourage everyone to sign up for the US Park Poilce Alerts.  Keeping informed is one way to help make everyone safer!
Thanks to Tony for getting a copy of this.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Ward 5 School Supply Give Away

This Saturday from 1-5 PM the OCASE Foundation, in conjunction with CM Kenyan McDuffie and other organizations, will be hosting a Back To School Supplies Giveaway.  If you or someone you know in Ward 5 needs help getting their children properly supplied for the coming school year, please spread the word!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Neihborhood MPD Partol Service Area Meeting Thursday

   With the recent wave of muggings and crime taking place at and around the Ft. Totten Metro Station, the need to meet with our local police officials is deifintly on the minds of most neighbors.  After speaking with both the head of the MPD PSA for our area , and the Rock Creek Division of the US Park Police it is recommended that as many people as possible attend the upcoming meeting with representatives from both organizations this Thursday at 7:00 PM at the North Michigan Park Rec Center.  This is an opportunity for the community to discuss the issues that concer them, as well as hear what is being done to help combat crime in our neighborhood.  These meetings are held on the last Thursday of every month by the MPD.

MPD PSA 405 Community Meeting
Thursday August 23rd at 7:30 PM
1333 Emerson Street, NE
Washington, DC 20017

Friday, August 10, 2012

Union Market Preview...Finally!

  There may be no upcoming addition to the greater Ward 5 landscape that is as highly anticipated as the September opening of the new/revitalized Union Market.  The once dilapidated and scarcely populated market, is in the final phase of it's major overhaul by real estate developer Edens Corporation.
View of Union Market sign from NoMA Metro Station Platform
   In anticipation of this opening (and to get the word out) Edens teamed up with Brightest Young Things Entertainment to hold their first annual Union Market Picnic on Saturday, July 21st.  While the weather was not the best, it accomplished exactly what the developer intended.  It got the word out!  With several of the vendors in attendance plan on making the Market their home, several local  food trucks and craft vendors helped make the experience memorable.  The Market, while not fully completed, was far enough into the construction project  for all in attendance to get a sense of what an amazing space this will be.  With vendors lined up like Rappahannock River Oysters, Peregrine Espresso (literally the best coffee shop in DC, go to their Eastern market location NOW if you don't believe us), Tickling Springs Creamery (products available at Yes! Organic Markets), Takorean, DC Empanadas, Lyon Bakery (see their bread in action at The Rolling Ficelle food truck), and many more! 

Vendor map of Union Market DC
The market's official opening date will be September 8th, and will operate Tuesday-Friday 11am - 8pm & Sat - Sun 8am - 8pm.  Enjoy some of the pics we managed to grab between scarfing down oysters and bbq and beers and cookies and churros and sliders and ice cream and tacos and oh boy, we may have overdone it...

Market entrance for the UM Picnic
Wall display of original market layout

Some of the festivities outside...too bad the rain didn't let up
Rappahannock Oyster Booth...with a little
Flying Dog! Rappahannock will utilize this
booth as a permanent resident of the Market

Picnic attendants enjoying some sliders from Lyon Bakery
and a little Oyamel.  Lyon will have a booth at the
mMarket, while sadly...Oyamel was just helping with food.
The unique entrance chandeliers made of recycled water
bottles...that's right those are all plastic water bottles
Hill Country BBQ was also on hand to provide some
food, and it went great with some 21sr Amendment
Hell or High Watermelon IPA.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Another Mugging in Ft. Totten Metro Station Park Path

  The MPD 4th District sent out an alert early this morning around 7 or 8 AM that a robbery at gun point took place in the park separating Galloway and Gallatin St's NE.  The Alert read

"4D- Robbery Gun- 550 Galloway St NE, LOF, B/M,
 Bushy Hair, Dark skin, sweat shirt and Bl. Jeans." 

View 550 Galloway St NE in a larger map  
  This seems to be another in an escalating trend of violent crimes emanating from, and centered around, the Ft. Totten Metro and the National Park land that separates the North Michigan Park Community from the Ft. Totten Metro.   Several i the community feel that this trend is reminiscent of 8+ year ago when the National Park Land was a site of many violent crimes, ranging in severity.   Over the past 4 ears or so, it has seen a dramatic decline in crime. However, it seems that local criminals have found fertile hunting ground at the area surrounding the Metro Station. Many in the neighborhood are not too happy with the current response of the MPD regarding these act of violence.  For this reason it has been suggested that the MPD 4th District PSA for 405 (section of the 4th District covering this neighborhood ) should be made aware of these issues.  The following message was sent this afternoon to Lt. Rogers asking for clarification and a possible community meeting to discuss these issues.  Please read/share/provide input and participate in the poll regarding a community meeting addressing these issues. 

"Lt. Rogers,
   My name is Joe Finley and I am a community blogger for the Ft. Totten area, and a homeowner over on the 700 block of Farragut PL, NE.  It has come to my attention that there was a robbery at gun point in the park that separates Gallatin and Galloway St's NE early in the morning very recently (I am hearing this morning).  This is very disturbing news as it seems that violence in the park has once again began to rise.  Not only has the frequency of the attacks seem to be increasing, but the seriousness also seems to be increasing (just a month or so ago a friend of mine was assaulted with a pipe and had his phone stolen, and now a crime involving a firearm).  I have been sent numerous requests from people who follow my blog asking for information on what the MPD and Park Police plan to do regarding this increase in crime in the area and particularly around the Metro Station.  It seems as if most of the neighbors feel the MPD's response is simply "don't go through the park," or that "it is just a number game."  I for one don't believe that either of those are appropriate answers, nor are they the a reflection of the official position of the MPD.  Is there anything you can tell me regarding the MPD's plans to address these problems, or the things the neighborhood can do to help make the area safer?  l'd also like to suggest the possibility of a community Q and A session to talk about their concerns and what they see as the issues and possible solutions.  I appreciate you taking your time to read this and look forward to hearing back from you and possibly working with you to disseminate information in the future.
Joe Finley
The Totten Life Blog"

DC Public Schools Beautification Day

  Got this message the other day and thought it would be a good opportunity to spread the word, and get both new AND old residents to come togther and help kick off the school year right!
  "DCPS is preparing for our annual Beautification Day. This year, Beautification Day is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 25, 2012 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. We're looking for over 3,500 volunteers from every neighborhood in the city to help ensure that our schools are ready and welcoming for the first day of school.
  There's something for everyone! You can help us by:
• Volunteering at a school (Register)
• Serving as a site manager (Register)
• Downloading a flier and spreading the word.
If you have questions, please e-mail our planning team at
We look forward to seeing you on August 25th!
-The Beautification Day Planning Team"

After speaking with Stephanie at the Office of Family and Public Engagement, we were able to get specific information for ANC 5A/5B. There are still numerous volunteer spots open for the Mamie D Lee School, Brookland EC, and LaSalle- Backus EC.  Please utlize this opportunuty to help out neighborhood children, and ensure they have the best school year experience possible!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Break in on 800 Blk of Crittenden St. NE

  Earlier this week a house on the 800 Block of Crittenden Street NE was broken into at 11 AM in the afternoon.  The intruder(s) scaled the home's 8' fence and entered through the rear of the house.  Although the home's alarm did go off, the intruder(s) still managed to make off with a laptop.  This comes at a perceived time of increased vandalisim and theft in the North Michigan Park and Ft. Totten neighborhoods.  Increased vigilance is recommended.  Some people are calling for a meeting with the PSA police representative, which might not be a bad thing.