Representatives from all walks of Foggy Bottom life congregated in the cold weather in the small park near the Foggy Bottom Metro Stop Sunday for the seventh annual Neighborhood Block Party, sponsored by GW-backed community group FRIENDS.
“[The block party] is a joint activity with neighbors and the university as a way to come together to talk about issues that need to change. It is a way to try to foster cooperation and conversation,” GW Director of Community Relations Britany Waddell said.
For the past seven years, FRIENDS, an organization composed of roughly 450 student, faculty and neighborhood members, has been dedicated to promoting discussion between the GW community, and the Foggy Bottom and West End neighborhoods.
“This is a nice symbolization of the partnership we are trying to build,” said University President Steven Knapp.
More than 100 vendors, including Trader Joes, D.C. Snacks, Tonic restaurant and representatives from different organizations including the Humane Society and on-campus orgs like the Student Association, College Democrats, College Republicans, EMeRG and University Police mingled with students and the community.
There was also live music from groups like the Tim Miller Band, Voice Gospel Choir, and Forbidden Planet Productions.
For the first time in seven years, a GW Health and Screening Information tent was open and available to provide information to the public and offer a wide range of screening tests, said Anne Banner, a representative from the Medical Center of Communications.
“The Medical Center at GW is not only world-class but they also have a strong connection to the University to provide free screening and to make sure all resources of the GW Hospital are known to the public,” Assistant Vice President for Communications Sarah Baldassaro said.
D.C. Councilmember Phil Mendelson stopped by with his daughter Addie to show support.
“It looks like everyone is having a good time. I’m here because it’s a community event and part of the constituency,” said Mendelson.
Oct. 26, 2009: The article has been updated to reflect the following correction:
Brittany Waddell was originally listed as the FRIENDS Director of Community Relations. She holds that position for the University. In addition, the photo caption originally listed the block party as being held by the Foggy Bottom Association. It was held by FRIENDS, as is written in the story.