Essential DC, History, Life in the Capital, Monumental, People, The Features

Monumental: The National Mall & Memories

Photo by Rachel Levitin

My first physical encounter with the ivory American tower that is the Lincoln Memorial was at the age of 12. When I graduated from my four-year stint at American University at age 22, I maintained and continued to proclaim that the Lincoln Memorial is my favorite place to “sit and do nothing” in D.C.

Its hallowed marble grounds and view of the Reflecting Pool is a unique visual shot only available in D.C. Thousands of visitors flood the site daily. It’s a nice stop for a group photo and the corner stone of an essential plot point in Wedding Crashers but at the age of 23 I have no idea why I still call the Lincoln Memorial my favorite place to “sit and do nothing” in D.C.

When you live in Washington for long enough, the tourist appeal loses its initial flare. Often times, those of us who announce residency for longer than a Presidential term are left to visit historical sites, memorials, landmarks, and museums when family or friends are here from out of town … or we’ve guilt tripped ourselves into venturing out into the District’s finest attraction – the National Mall. Continue reading

The Daily Feed

DC Crafts: Find Of The Day

Vintage Washington DC Tall Drinking Glasses Circa 1950 Set of 2

Today’s Find Of The Day celebrates many of our city’s finest monuments and buildings, and one of my summer favorites, iced cold beverages. These vintage drinking glasses feature black and gold images of The White House, The Capital Building, Iwo Jima Memorial, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Lincoln Memorial arranged around the seal of the POTUS.  The unique and quite handsome set were made around 1950.

On a Monday afternoon, all I can do is imagine both glasses filled with either some Jack Daniels and Ginger Ale, or perhaps a Gin Rickey. Heaven.

Featured Photo

Featured Photo


This is not Oklahoma by katyray

All day long, tourists wear down the stone of our monuments a few microns at a time with each step, each touch, huffing and puffing as they climb the stairs.  As a parent or school teacher you have to keep an eye on your flock to make sure they don’t take candy from strangers or fall into the bushes.  As a kid you wonder how you can get your hands on some candy or just how long you can hide in the bushes before you are found.  After a while spent mulling around, possibly reading the first sentence or two of the engraved president’s speech, postcards are purchased and this site gets checked off the list by capturing a bad camera phone trophy.  Come on kids, let’s head to the Hard Rock Cafe for a burger or a nice pig sandwich.

The night guard flips the sign from “open” to “closed”, radios to his buddies that quadrant four is secure, and soon Operation Foxtrot Charlie Delta (five card draw) commences in the bowels of the monument.  Honest Abe breathes a sigh of relief that he’s made it through another day.  He notices that he’s starting to get dirty, no thanks to the pigeons perched on his shoulders and the smog that saturates the air.  What was once a deafening scene of chaos is now peaceful, serene, and calm.  It’s his favorite time of the day.

Suddenly, far away in the darkness of night, Katy Ray’s camera makes a clicking noise that pierces the air, capturing this beautifully simple, grainy image on her Kodak T-MAX 3200 film.  The guards pause in silence, staring at each other, listening for more clicks.  Honest Abe lifts an eyebrow and scans the grounds for any signs of horseplay.  But after a few minutes, the card game resumes and the photographer slinks away into the pitch black as the scene comes to an end, only to be repeated again tomorrow.  And the day after that.

Adventures, Life in the Capital, Special Events, The Daily Feed, The District, The Great Outdoors, The Hill, The Mall, We Green DC

National Public Lands Day 09/26

Photo courtesy of
‘Cleaning Up the Potomac’
courtesy of ‘mtngirl9999′

Looking for something to do Saturday? How about volunteering at a local National Public Lands Day site.

Tomorrow marks the 15th anniversary of this event to preserve and protect America’s natural heritage.  Last year brought out more than 120,000 volunteers at over 1,800 locations to assist public land managers with hands-on projects.

You can find 6 events taking place in DC at various locations, like: Kennilworth Aquatic Gardens, Rock Creek Park, Kingman and Heritage Memorial Park, the Lincoln Memorial, President’s Park and National Mall & Memorial Parks.