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Dupont East’s 17th Street Neighbors Gearing Up for 9th Annual Celebration

Accompanying images can be viewed starting on page 1 of the August 2018 issue pdf

By Bill McLeod*

Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets once again will be presenting its annual, late summer 17th Street Festival on Saturday afternoon, August 25th from 12 noon to 6pm., rain or shine. Now in its ninth year, the event will be celebrating the shops, restaurants, and services of the neighborhood’s four-block commercial strip between P and R Streets, and featuring artists and artisans, vendors and entrepreneurs, local non-profits, kids activities, a pet area — and even local politicians.

“Our festival is unique!,” said Promotion Committee Chair Sue Taylor. “We focus on artists and makers, and we don’t have a stage or food vendors. This distinct difference makes our festival family-friendly and great for the arts.”

Neither does the festival feature a performance stage, instead, there will be entertainment all afternoon on the street, including a funk and mariachi bands, flamenco dancers with guitar, band, a Chinese lion dancer, and a New Orleans jazz band.

The day will end with a drag performance between 5:00 and 6:00 pm featuring Brooklyn Heights, a noted performer who has appeared at 17th Street’s Cobalt, Nellies Sports Bar at 9th and U in Shaw, and the recently closed Town DC at 8th and Florida, also in Shaw.

The planners decided not to have food vendors this year given that there are 16 popular restaurants, most with outdoor patios, along the four-block festival area. This, said one of the planners, because “we want our local eateries to be the focus of the success!”

Highlights of the day will feature more than 60 artists and crafts people selling everything from oil paintings to pottery, jewelry to cigars, and every creative item in between. Other participants will include area nonprofit organizations, politicians, and local entrepreneurs. The Kids Zone will have an inflatable slide, snow cones, YMCA, and soccer demonstrations.

The festival is organized by Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets (HDCMS), with major support from the DC Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD), Elxel, Colonial Parking, Edlavich JCC, Dupont Circle Citizens Association (DCCA), ANC 2B, Stonewall Kickball, TD Bank, Friends of Stead Park, and the City Paper.

The mission of Historic Dupont Main Streets is to promote, coordinate, and maintain improvements of the cultural, economic, and environmental qualities of Dupont Circle so as to make it an exemplary place to live, work, shop, and play.

*Bill McLeod is the Executive Director of Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets.

Copyright © 2018 InTowner Publishing Corp. & Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets.