Area News Featuring Chevy Chase, Bethesda, & Tenleytown
The Collection in Chevy Chase is now in an advanced stage of reconstruction - especially the streetscape. Direct vehicular access to Clyde's restaurant from Wisconsin Avenue is completely blocked at this point, but the restaurant & adjacent businesses can be reached by circuitous routes via Western Avenue, South Park Avenue and Wisconsin Circle. Valet parking is occasionally available. That said, the renderings below suggest how some of the major areas of The Collection will look after the ongoing reconstruction is finished. The renderings are provided courtesy of The Chevy Chase Land Company. Note that the new concept will eliminate unnecessary walls that had limited visibility & access throughout The Collection.
The first view is from Wisconsin Avenue looking into Farr Park, which is between two of The Collection's main buildings. Note that there will be more space for alfresco dining....The Little Beet Table restaurant will be in the building to the right in the rendering. Other new restaurants will open onto the park as well.
The view below shows a reconfigured area - to be called Parkside Green - under construction across from the front entrance of Clyde's restaurant. A redundant elevator structure is being removed. The area will have a new "amphitheatre" that will offer seating and a venue for occasional entertainment. Pedestrian access will, as shown, be a feature of this area.
The image below shows how Johnson Park - the area behind Clyde's - will be opened up. Among other enhancements, access from the Metro Station will be greatly improved. There will be a new water feature and seating.
Hillwood Museum, Estate & Gardens will exhibit Fabergé Rediscovered, June 9-January 13, 2019. The special exhibition will unveil new discoveries relating to Hillwood’s collection of Fabergé imperial Easter eggs and other famed works. The exhibition “will bring to light new attributions and provenances and provide a broader framework to study, explore, and appreciate nineteenth and twentieth-century jewelry and goldsmithing.” Major American art dealers and collectors, such as Marjorie Merriweather Post, played a significant role in Fabergé’s success after the fall of the imperial regime. For the first time, with this exhibition, Hillwood’s collection will be examined through Post’s perspective. The exhibition was curated by Dr. Wilfried Zeisler, who is Hillwood’s chief curator.
Image below: A Lusupov Box – Photo courtesy of Hillwood
The Mansion at Strathmore is displaying three exhibitions thru June 10.They include Washington Wax Works; The Unexpected Smile by Dario Zucchi; and Architext: Jeffery Everett. The Mansion will exhibit the Washington Calligrapher's Guild, Buried Wild: Adam Griffiths June 16-July 29. To read more about the exhibition, visit http://www.calligraphersguild.org
The American University of Museum at the Katzen Arts Center (WWAC) will exhibit Latitude: The Washington Women's Arts Center 1975-1987, June 16-August 12.The WWAC was created in 1975 as a non-profit organization that provided professional support and opportunities for women in the arts. Throughout its history, the WWAC also sponsored speakers, produced literary and visual arts journals, and collaborated with other organizations to raise the profile of women artists in the Washington D.C. area and around the country. The exhibition will feature the art of former WWAC members and exhibitors & showcase 90+ works produced between the years 1975-1987, some of which are iconic of that time. Recent works by member artists will be featured in a slide show - accompanied by interviews. The exhibition was curated by Francoise Yohalem & is sponsored by the Alper Initiative for Washington Art.
The American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center will present a Retrospective about the career of artist Ralph Steadman, June 16-August 12.Steadman was one of Britain’s most important graphic artists of the last 50 years. Ralph Steadman: A Retrospective will feature a collection of more than 100 original art works “that will take viewers on a journey through the artist’s wide-ranging career, from sketches created in the 1950s, to book illustrations, to present-day work. Steadman is famous for his long collaboration with the writer Hunter S. Thompson, most notably for providing the illustrations for Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1971).He also helped to create what has since become known as ‘Gonzo’ journalism. Steadman’s own illustrated books have been translated into several languages and his work has been exhibited around the world.
Trattoria 5520 in Courtyard Marriott on Wisconsin Avenue in Chevy Chase introduced a new menu in April.Chef Alfredo included diners’ favorites from the previous menu, including entrées, pizzas, salads, sandwiches and more. There is an Italian theme among several of the selections, reflecting cuisine in the chef’s native Italy. Images below:Chef Alfredo & views of the Trattoria.
Chef Geoff's Restaurant Group and Clover Restaurant Group announced in April that they have joined forces to create a venture combining four Washington restaurant brands: Chef Geoff’s, Lia’s, Cafe Deluxe and Tortilla Coast. All of the restaurants will now be operated by Chef Geoff’s Deluxe Hospitality (CGD Hospitality) and family-owned by Brian Sullivan, James Sullivan, Geoff Tracy and Chris Tracy. All four have extensive experience in restaurant ownership and operations in the DC, Virginia and Maryland markets. Geoff and Chris Tracy will be leading the day-to-day management while Brian and Jim will be leading the company’s strategic growth efforts.
Image below:Lia's Restaurant, which is now open for alfresco dining.
Kobo, the eight-seat sushi counter inside Sushiko in The Collection, has been highly praised by critics in The Washington Post and elsewhere. The counter offers diners front-row seats to see the culinary performances from co-chefs Handry and Piter Tjan. The vegan tasting menu is $130 per person, including tax and tip, Monday through Wednesday. Thursday through Saturday, eggs, seafood and meat are “woven into the mix” for a twice-nightly meal/show at $160 per person.
Range restaurant in the Chevy Chase Pavilion closed permanently in early April.The restaurant had already stopped serving lunch on weekdays, but had continued to be open at other times.Lunchbox, the company’s café on the atrium level of the Pavilion continues as usual.
As of the end of April, there was no information available about what company will occupy the space formerly used by Panera Bakery on Willard Avenue in Friendship Heights. There are many rumors about potential occupants and much speculation. The Agenda News will post an article in this column about the future tenancy the minute reliable information is available.
The Puppet Co. is presenting Sleeping Beauty at Glen Echo Park, thru June 24.The classic story of fairies, frogs, kings and queens is told with rod puppets and special effects. The show “is a real treat for princesses and princes, big and small!” The production is suggested for Ages: 3 1/2 – Adult.
Adventure Theatre MTC is presenting the world premiere of Judy Moody & Stink: The Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Treasure Hunt, adapted for the stage by Allison Gregory & directed by Mitchell Hebert, at Glen Echo Park, thru June 3. The play is based on the books by Megan McDonald and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds. It’s the tale of a third grade girl - Judy Moody – and her know-it-all little brother.
The show is suggested for Ages 4+
Image below: The logo for Judy Moody & Stink: The Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Treasure Hunt
The Town of Somerset in Montgomery County, Maryland had a ribbon-cutting ceremony to open the town’s conservation landscape garden on May 20.Mayor Jeffrey Slavin presided over the event and introduced speakers who were instrumental in creating the garden. Council President Marnie Shaul has commented that “Somerset is dedicated to being a good environmental steward and to investing in improving the environment. "The new garden was designed to help control water flowing off the roof of the Town garage during a rain storm.The garden bank has terraces to slow and absorb the rain water, and native plants to attract bees, butterflies, and birds. Designer Edamarie Mattei of Backyard Bounty arranged the garden to maintain visual interest in three seasons of the year.”
The photos below were taken during the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
A view of the ribbon-cutting ceremony
A view of the conservation landscape garden
Brookside Gardens in Wheaton, MD is presenting the annual Wings of Fancy Live Butterfly & Caterpillar Exhibit thru September 16. As visitors enter the South Conservatory, they are “surrounded by hundreds of brilliant live butterflies from North America, Costa Rica, Africa and Asia soaring among colorful flowers and going about their business of drinking nectar and looking for others of their kind. Visitors learn about their amazing metamorphoses, the important role butterflies play in healthy ecosystems, and how to ensure these beautiful insects thrive in our own gardens.”
Western Grove Urban Park, which opened last year in Chevy Chase Village, is maturing and, for the first time, Spring flowers are in bloom there.The park is just over the stone wall from the Giant food store in Friendship Heights. The photo below shows one of the attractive seating areas, which is near a water feature – with flowers in bloom nearby.
Several of the many Spring gardens in & around Friendship Heights are pictured at the end of this column.
Chevy Chase Concerts will present the Chevy ChasePresbyterian Church Chancel Choir performing Englishman John Rutter’s Requiem on June 3. Rutter is one of the world’s leading contemporary composers of choral music, and his Requiem is one of his best-known works. The Requiem is scored for chorus, soprano solo and a unique combination of seven instruments — flute, oboe, timpani, glockenspiel, harp, cello and organ. The program will also feature spirituals such as “I Hear A Voice A-Prayin” by Houston Bright and “Hear my Prayer” by Moses Hogan and “My Lord what a Morning” (on the organ). Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church is located at One Chevy Chase Circle NW.Admission is free and a reception will follow the concert.
Washington National Cathedral will present the Annual Independence Day Concert on July 4.Cathedral organists George Fergus & The Reverend Benjamin Straley will be joined by the Washington Symphonic Brass and the U.S. Navy Sea Chanters in presenting a program of patriotic favorites.
Images below:George Fergus & The Reverend Benjamin Straley.
The National Philharmonic and Chorale, led by Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk, guest conductor, will perform a concert celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Poland's Independencein the Music Center on June 2. The program will feature Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with pianist Brian Ganz. The program will also include Krzesimir Debski’s Hussars’ Polonaise & Szymanowski’s Stabat Mater. Other soloists will be Esther Heideman, soprano, Magdalena Wór, mezzo-soprano and Tyler Duncan, baritone.
Image below: Magdalena Wór
The BSO, conducted by Marin Alsop, will perform Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 in D Minor in the Music Center on June 9.The program will also feature Bernstein’s Slava! A Political Overture & the composer’s Symphony No. 2, "The Age of Anxiety." The soloist will be Jon Kimura Parker, piano.
Image below Jon Kimura Parker
Strathmore will present Kristin Chenoweth in the Music Center on June 27.The Tony and Emmy Award-winning actress and singer works in film, television, voiceover and stage.She sings jazz standards, gospel songs, opera works & more. The concert will include music from her latest release of American SongbookClassics, The Art of Elegance, which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Current Jazz and Traditional Jazz charts, and #1 on Amazon’s Vocal Pop chart in 2016. Chenowith starred in Strathmore’s groundbreaking I am Anne Hutchinson/I am Harvey Milk production in 2016
Washington Revels Maritime Voices will perform outside the Great Falls Tavern Visitors Center at the C&O Canal in Potomac, MD on June 2.The concert will celebrate the lives and legacies of the men and women who worked and maintained our nation’s 19th-century waterways. The Revels will sing songs and tell stories that were heard up and down the C&O, Erie, and other mighty canals.In addition to hearing the performance, visitors can walk or bike the trails, catch spectacular views of the falls, and relax along the idyllic canal. Kids can participate in activities to become C&O Canal Junior Rangers.
Image below: Members of the Washington Revels Maritime Voices
The space formerly occupied by Chico's at the corner of Willard & Wisconsin Avenues will be taken over by a bank. A branch of a bankwhich is now located nearby in Friendship Heights plans to move there.The interior of the property has to be virtually rebuilt and work is now underway. The corner location - pictured below - offers high visibility at the heart of Friendship Heights.Incidentally, there are seven banks inthe immediate area, and several local residents have bemoaned the loss of yet another retail shop.
Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery opened a showroom at 5525 Wisconsin Avenue – near a branch of FedEx - in early May.The company has locations nationwide and promises “access to the widest selection of products.” The space which the showroom will occupy was formerly tenanted by a series of restaurants……..dating back to a branch of Hamburger Hamlet.
Pampillonia Jewelers closed their shop in Mazza Gallerie in May after 40 years in that location, and is reopening in Bethesda Row. The new store will offer the same selection, service and repair facilities as did the store in Mazza Gallerie.
Rangoni Firenze shoe store is preparing to relocate from The Collection to the site formerly occupied by the DePandi men’s apparel store near Courtyard Marriott hotel. Meanwhile, DePandi is temporarily located at a site in The Collection formerly leased by Gals on the Green. Once the ongoing redevelopment of The Collection is finished, DePandi will relocate again - to the former Louis Vuitton space on Wisconsin Avenue.
Chevy Chase Florist is preparing to relocate to The Collection at 7 Wisconsin Circle in May. The full-service florist has been located at 5415 Friendship Blvd. in Friendship Heights for many years.The new location is between Sweet Teensy bakery & Zen Acupressure. Visit https://chevychaseflorist.com
Unexpected Stage Company will present Be a Good Little Widow, a comedy about life, grief, and longing by Bekah Brunstetter, in the Fireside Room at the River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation Building in Bethesda, July 12-August 5.The production is directed by the company’s co-founder Christopher Goodrich. The cast will feature Nick Duckworth as Craig, Emily Morrison as Hope, Lansing O’Leary as Brad, and Ruthie Rado as Melody. Playwright Bekah Brunstetter is a producer on NBC’s television hit This Is Us.
The annual Bike to Work Day took place on May 18. The pit stop in Friendship Heights was at Wisconsin Place - at the corner of Wisconsin & Western Avenues, where the photos shown below were made.
New streetlights/stoplights and buttons to activate pedestrian crossing signals were installed at the intersection of Wisconsin & Willard Avenues and Wisconsin Circle in Friendship Heights in April.
Image below:A signal box for pedestrians to use to activate a Walk sign, and, of course, to pause street traffic.
Lime Bikes and similar rental scooters are ubiquitous on the streets & sidewalks of DC. Lately, they're showing up in Friendship Heights. The motorized two-wheel scooters are internet-connected and can go up to 15 mph.They have GPS and data connections and can be located using a smartphone app. The scooters can be unlocked & used for as little as $1.00. Users are expected to give pedestrians the right-of-way, and they should be parked carefully - preferably against a wall, as shown in the photos below of scooters parked near North Park Avenue in April. Regrettably, there have been many complaints in DC and other cities about careless use of scooters and endangerment to pedestrians and others.