Obama wants to Triple Child Care Tax Credit

(UPI) — U.S. President Obama said Wednesday that tripling the maximum child care tax credit up to $3,000 per child is a “good investment.”
Speaking at a town hall event in Charlotte, N.C., before a group of female bloggers, Obama said the proposal was included in his budget package.
It “would translate to potentially an additional $900 a year for child care and that’s going to make a big difference in a lot of families,” he said, adding that it should be a top budget priority at the federal level.
Obama said it’s in all Americans’ best interest to make sure the country’s children have the necessary care while their parents are working.
Speaking about the 8-year-old son of the woman who asked about the credit, Obama said “if he’s doing well, that means he’s paying taxes, that means he’s contributing to society, he’s staying out of trouble. That’s a good investment for me.
“We want to make sure that those families that are working hard, doing the right thing, they get some tax relief,” he concluded. “We can afford this.”


DPR Receives Healthy Meals Program Grant

Funds will supplement Free Summer Meals Program

This week, the DC Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) was named one of 80 nationwide recipients for the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA) and Walmart Foundation partnership grant to support out-of-school time healthy food access and nutrition literacy. Through the $2.3 million shared grant from the Walmart Foundation, recipient park and recreation agencies received funds to supplement out-of-school time feeding programs.

This grant ties into DPR’s annual participation with the Office of the State Superintendent for Education (OSSE) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Free Summer Meals Program. From June 22 through August 21, 2015, kids and teens eat free at select DPR Camp Sites and non-DPR Summer Meals Program sites.

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Lights of Freedom Ceremony

Honoring the lives of the unnamed 

April 16, DC Emancipation Day, DC residents will join with the DC Department of Parks and Recreation, the National Park Service and Washington Parks & People to light 2,000 candle luminaries in honor of thousands of African Americans who were buried in what is now Adams Morgan after they gained their freedom during the U.S. Civil War. Each illuminated candle will be a tribute to the people who were buried in the cemetery.

The persons interred in Walter Pierce Park and parts of the adjoining National Zoo and Rock Creek Park comprise the largest unmarked African American cemetery in the nation’s capital. At least 8,428 African American men, women, and children were buried in the Mount Pleasant Plains/Colored Union Benevolent Association Cemetery between 1870 and 1890. More than half of those buried were children.
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On Saturday, April 15, DC Lottery Executive Director Buddy Roogow passed away at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, MD after having suffered an aneurysm. He was 65.

His passing was announced by District of Columbia Chief Financial Officer Jeffrey DeWitt with this statement:

“It is with great sadness that I announce that Buddy Roogow, director of the DC Lottery since 2009, passed away on Saturday morning, April 11, after spending Friday evening with family and friends. He was 65 years old. Buddy loved what he did and he was the Lottery’s foremost champion. He was a consummate professional, dedicated to making DC’s the best Lottery in the country and worked hard every day to achieve that goal. I had the honor of working closely with him over the past year. Buddy was a wonderful colleague and to many of us here, a great friend. We will miss his warmth, enthusiasm, energy and humor. We will keep his family and all of those who loved him in our hearts and prayers.”
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Report Identifies Ways States Can Create More Affordable Housing for Households with Disabilities and Extremely Low Income

The Technical Assistance Collaborative (TAC) and the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) are pleased to announce the release of Creating New Integrated Permanent Supportive Housing Opportunities for ELI Households: A Vision for the Future of the National Housing Trust Fund. This report highlights important innovations in affordable housing financing policy designed to benefit Extremely Low Income (ELI) households, including people with significant and long term disabilities who need Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH). The PSH approach is a highly cost-effective best practice housing strategy that combines ELI housing with voluntary community-based support services.

TAC’s report, which was co-authored by Ann O’Hara and Jim Yates, documents innovative non-traditional financing policies from the Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Illinois state housing agencies that are consistent with recommendations in a recent NLIHC companion report, Aligning Federal Low Income Housing Programs with Housing Need. NLIHC called for federal investments in housing to be better aligned with the nation’s need for housing affordable to ELI households, including robust funding for the new National Housing Trust Fund program.
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St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital® Presents its St. Jude Star Award to Celebrity Friends David and Tamela Mann

Celebrity entertainers David and Tamela Mann, noted supporters of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®, recently received the St. Jude Star Award at the Entertainment One (eOne) post-Stellar Awards celebration at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. St. Jude is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer, sickle cell disease and other life threatening diseases.

The Manns co-hosted the 30th Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards and received the St. Jude Star award, which recognizes individuals in the entertainment industry whose fundraising and awareness efforts have resulted in significant contributions to the hospital. The singing and acting duo lent their celebrity status to help garner $1.4 million in cash and pledges for the Radio Cares for St. Jude national radio broadcast event and volunteered their time to host and perform during the St. Jude Celebration of Hope closing dinner.
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Salute Military Children During the Month of the Military Child

In April, the military community comes together to highlight the contributions, bravery and patriotism of its youngest members. The Month of the Military Child recognizes the more than 1.9 million U.S. military children that brave the unique challenges of military life. Often military kids face back-to-back deployments of a parent, or; they may have to learn how to deal with an injury to or death of a parent. The impact that military service has on military kids can be overlooked as their service and sacrifice may not stand out the way it does for a parent in uniform.

The National Institutes of Health reports that children of deployed parents are at a greater risk of suffering emotional and behavioral problems; including stress and anxiety. TRICARE covers medically or psychologically necessary mental care, including counseling for children. TRICARE covers well-child care from birth to age six. Each well-child visit lets your doctor look for developmental delays or problems and for you to talk about any concerns you have. Visit TRICARE online for more information about TRICARE’s behavioral health and well-child benefits.
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The Home Depot announced today that there is only ONE WEEK left to vote in the Retool Your School Campus Improvement Grant Program. Established in 2010, Retool Your School provides support for campus improvement projects at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) across the country. Since the program’s inception, approximately one million dollars in grant money has been awarded. Voters are encouraged to visit www.retoolyourschool.com to vote and help their favorite HBCU win a campus improvement grant of up to $50,000.
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RIT/NTID offers Health Care Careers Exploration Camp for deaf and hard-of-hearing students, July 26–31

High school students interested in healthcare careers are encouraged to apply

Deaf and hard-of-hearing high-school students entering 10th, 11th and 12th grades in the fall and who are interested in pursuing a career in the healthcare industry are encouraged to attend the new Health Care Careers Exploration Camp at Rochester Institute of Technology’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf, July 26–31.

The camp is designed to help students explore a range of career options in the healthcare field and learn about important issues in today’s healthcare arena. Students will visit area medical facilities, see medical procedures and participate in hands-on demonstrations in biology, exercise science, medical laboratory science, microbiology, nursing and nutrition. Students will also become CPR/First Aid certified. Camp classes are taught in English and sign language.
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Growing List of DC Neighborhoods Oppose Pepco-Exelon Merger

Nineteen Advisory Neighborhood Commissions Express Opposition; None Support

Advisory Neighborhood Commissions (ANCs) from across the District are rising in opposition to Exelon’s proposed purchase of Pepco, calling on Mayor Muriel Bowser to halt the deal. In total, 19 ANCs have now passed resolutions against the merger or publicly expressed concerns since public hearings began in mid-December, including all of the ANCs in Ward 4, which Mayor Bowser formerly represented.

None of the District’s ANCs has expressed support for the proposed merger.
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Councilmember Anita Bonds Introduces Legislation to Protect Low-Income Elderly and Tenants with Disabilities

Legislation would work to protect some of the District’s most vulnerable residents

Committee on Housing and Community Development Chair Anita Bonds introduced today the “Elderly and Tenants with Disabilities Protection Amendment Act of 2015”, a bill that eliminates rent increases for low-income seniors and tenants with disabilities that reside in rent controlled housing.

While some important protections already exist for low-income seniors and tenants with disabilities, under many petitions filled by landlords for rent adjustments, vulnerable residents can see their rents skyrocket, leading to significant financial hardship and in many cases displacement. The bill would protect seniors and tenants with disabilities from sharp rent increases resulting from the following housing petitions: hardship, services and facilities, substantial rehabilitation and voluntary agreements. Continue reading


Federal Court Approves Landmark Settlement to Address Metro Transit Police Treatment of Juveniles

A D.C. federal court recently approved a settlement that obliges the WMATA Metro Transit Police Department (MTPD) to commission an independent expert to review the manner in which its police officers interact with juveniles. The settlement resolves litigation brought by the ACLU of the Nation’s Capital on behalf of a mother and her 14-year-old daughter alleging that an MTPD officer used excessive force against the young girl.

Pursuant to the settlement in Winslow v. Taylor, WMATA will retain an independent police practices expert to review MTPD’s policies and practices regarding officer interactions with and uses of force against juveniles. An extensive agreement laying out the scope of that review is currently under seal. However, the ACLU of the Nation’s Capital has asked Judge Emmet Sullivan, who approved the settlement, to unseal the document and make public the details of the upcoming review. The settlement also included monetary compensation for the plaintiff.
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DC Council Bill Would Ensure Healthcare Providers Receive Important LGBT Cultural Competency Training

DC Councilmembers David Grosso and Yvette Alexander will introduce a bill that would “require continuing education for licensed health professionals on the subject of cultural competence and appropriate clinical treatment for individuals who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, gender nonconforming, queer, or questioning their sexual orientation or gender identity and expression.”

“LGBT people face substantial systemic discrimination in healthcare due to a lack of understanding of the unique needs and challenges faced by the community,” said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “Cultural competency training is critical to reducing healthcare disparities for LGBT people and improving access to high-quality healthcare, especially for transgender people.”
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Giant Food Kicks off Eleventh Annual Triple Winner® Game to Beat Kids Cancer

Giant Food Committed to Raise $1.6 Million for Pediatric Cancer Research

Giant Food of Landover, Md. launched its eleventh annual Triple Winner game last week to support pediatric cancer care and research at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and The Children’s Cancer Foundation, Inc. Customers who donate $1 at their neighborhood Giant will receive a Triple Winner scratch card and could be an instant winner of a free product, gift card, or cash up to $10,000.

Since 2005, Giant has raised $14.7 million for pediatric cancer research through Triple Winner, and this year Giant pledges to raise $1.6 million. One hundred percent of the donations will go directly to the Pediatric Oncology Division at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and The Children’s Cancer Foundation.

“Giant is proud to continue supporting Johns Hopkins and The Children’s Cancer Foundation in their relentless fight to end pediatric cancer,” said Gordon Reid, president, Giant Food of Landover, Md. “Our in-store campaign brings community members together to support patient care and research that we hope one day can help cure childhood cancer.” Continue reading


Walk to Cure Arthritis Comes to Washington, D.C.

Arthritis Foundation Raises Funds for a Cure in the Washington, D.C. Walk to Cure Arthritis

Help find a cure by participating in and fundraising for the 2015 Walk to Cure Arthritis on May 3, 2015 at Nationals Park (1500 South Capitol St. SE) in Washington, D.C. Registration begins at 8 a.m., and the walk will begin at 9 a.m. Dana McKay, evening host at 94.7 Fresh FM, will emcee the event. Teddy, one of the Washington Nationals Racing President Mascots, will kick off the Walk at the start line. Walk to Cure Arthritis is the Arthritis Foundation’s signature, national fundraising event to fight arthritis, the nation’s leading cause of disability.
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Georgetown Law, Arent Fox and Dla Piper Create an Affordable, Nonprofit Law Firm in the District of Columbia

The DC Affordable Law Firm will serve those with unmet legal needs

Georgetown University Law Center, Arent Fox LLP and DLA Piper LLP (US) announced the launch of the DC Affordable Law Firm (DCALF), an exclusively charitable and educational nonprofit law firm in the District of Columbia.

DCALF will provide affordable, high-quality legal services to residents within the metropolitan area of the District of Columbia who have unmet legal needs because they do not qualify for free legal aid and are unable to pay prevailing legal rates, and to small businesses and nonprofits serving the District’s distressed communities. The firm will not work for free, known as pro bono. Instead, it is pioneering in the field of low bono – providing high quality legal services at affordable fees to low income people who do not qualify for free legal services.
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Capital Pride new logo JPG

40th Celebration of Pride in the Nation’s Capital, Presented by Hilton

Wide Range of Events to Mark 40 Years of Progress, Hope for Future

Capital Pride has announced that the 40th Celebration of Pride in the Nation’s Capital presented by Hilton will be held from June 3-14. With the theme of “Flashback,” this year’s celebration will reflect on the progress the LGBTA community has made since the first DC Pride in 1975 and point the way toward even greater success in the future.

Hilton is proud to support the LGBT community as a way to further the Hilton brand promise of ensuring that every guest feels cared for, valued and respected by setting the stage for all travelers. As a committed partner of Capital Pride for three years, this year, Hilton is the Ruby Presenting Sponsor and will be the official host hotel partner for the 40th Celebration of Pride in the Nation’s Capital.

Check out the “Flashback” video PSA.
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Two U.S. Poets Laureate in Conversation, April 30

Charles Wright will conclude his tenure as the 20th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry at the Library of Congress by participating in a lively conversation with former Poet Laureate Charles Simic. The discussion will be moderated by the editor of Poetry magazine, Don Share.

The event will start at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 30, in the Coolidge Auditorium on the ground floor of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C. Free and open to the public, the discussion will be followed by a book signing and reception. Tickets are not required, but early arrival is strongly recommended.

Wright and Simic, who was the 15th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, published an epistolary correspondence, “The Narrative of the Image,” more than 20 years ago. The evening conversation will continue their friendly, witty back-and-forth on poetry with one of the nation’s pre-eminent editors.
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Spring Selling Season is Vibrant in Northern Virginia

March Home Sales Data for the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® Footprint Underscores the Strong Market Start

Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® notes that 2015 may be different because of its more sustainable, positive market direction. “The 14 percent increase in home sales this past March is a trend to celebrate, however we must remember that the 2014 winter polar vortex cast a huge chill on early 2014 home sales,” said Mary Bayat, the 2015 NVAR Chair and owner of Bayat Realty in Alexandria. “This major surge comes partly from pent up demand, and more closely resembles a balanced market. Our inventory is up 27 percent with 3,831 homes for sale, giving buyers a great selection. People like choices.”

The Federal Housing Administration, which guarantees mortgages for first-time buyers, is loosening the clamps on credit requirements, which could lead to more mortgage approvals.
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“What’s Poppin” is the Subject of Capitol Hill 
Art League Juried Show

Spring is finally here, and to celebrate, the Capitol Hill Art League will open its “What’s Poppin” juried art show at a reception on Saturday, April 18th at the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop (CHAW, located at 545 Seventh Street, S.E, Washington, DC 20003. CHAW is located three blocks south of the renowned Eastern Market on Capitol Hill. The show will run April 18th through May 30th in the CHAW Gallery.
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U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s 
Radio Special ‘Confronting Hatred’

What do a Nobel laureate, a former skinhead, an imam and a heavy metal singer all have in common?

They are the influential voices in “Confronting Hatred: 70 Years after the Holocaust,” an hour-long radio special created by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum as part of the Museum’s ongoing effort to foster greater understanding of the relevance of Holocaust history today.

The documentary special will air on WAMU on April 26 at 6 p.m. during this year’s Days of Remembrance, a nationwide event that honors victims of the Holocaust. The program can also be heard on the Museum’s website at ushmm.org/confronting-hatred as well as on iTunes.
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Get a Free Ride On Trip in Return for Helping Local Students in Need

Ride On’s Annual Food Drive to be Held Week of April 19
During Ride On’s annual food drive, Montgomery County Ride On bus passengers can donate nutritious food for area students who don’t have enough to eat – and receive a free bus ride in return. “Give and Ride” runs from Sunday, April 19 through Saturday, April 25.

During “Give and Ride,” food collection bags will be placed near the fare boxes on all Ride On buses. Passengers who transfer buses will need an additional food donation to ride free on the second bus. Riders using free shuttles and other transit services can participate in the food drive by bringing food donations to a Ride On bus. Continue reading


Montgomery County Department of Economic Development Hosts 2015 SBA Emerging Leaders Initiative

National Entrepreneurship Training Program Fosters Increased Small Business Growth, Job Creation

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) recently kicked-off its 2015 Emerging Leaders Initiative, an intensive executive-level training program intended to accelerate the growth of high-potential small businesses.

The Montgomery County Department of Economic Development (DED) has partnered with the SBA’s District Office to host one of two Metro DC area programs at their Rockville offices. The program, offered in 48 cities across the country, consists of a series of 13 classes held bi-weekly and culminating in a graduation ceremony slated for late October. Continue reading


Bicycle Ride to Benefit Tree House Child Assessment Center

Join cyclists of all ages and abilities at the third annual Tree House Tour de Cookie, a 14- or 40-mile bicycle ride on Saturday, May 2 to benefit the Tree House Child Assessment Center. A public-private partnership, the Tree House Child Assessment Center is dedicated to reducing trauma and promoting healing for young victims of physical and sexual abuse, and neglect.
The ride begins at 9 a.m. at the Johns Hopkins University Montgomery County Campus in Rockville. Participants will ride between cookie stands hosted by local clubs and organizations and collect and enjoy cookies and other sweet treats along the way. Riders will receive a collectible long sleeve t-shirt and a custom medal. Awards will go to the best cookie stand. Continue reading


Free Workshop on “Strategies to Successfully Manage Your Financial Life” to be Held at Germantown Library

A free one-hour workshop, “Getting Fiscally Fit: Strategies to Successfully Manage Your Financial Life,” will be presented at the Germantown Library on Thursday, April 30 from 7 to 9 p.m. The library is located at 19840 Century Blvd. A question-and-answer session will follow the presentation.
The program is sponsored by the National Endowment on Financial Education (NEFE, a non-profit organization). During the workshop, Kristin Michel Rodriguez, a financial advisor with more than 15 years of experience, will share information on managing a financial portfolio, debt, simple ways to save, and strategies to take control of personal finances to build a desired future. Continue reading


County Hosts Spring Forum Celebrating Art in Recovery

The public is invited to attend a community forum on Thursday, May 14 entitled “Finding Your Voice in Wellness: Share the Therapeutic Musings of the Spoken Word.” The forum will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Potomac Community Recreation Center, 11315 Falls Road, Potomac.
Guest speaker Stanice Anderson, author and Huffington Post blogger, will highlight the benefits of the spoken word in the addiction recovery process.
Representatives from the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, Peer Wellness & Recovery Services and Peer-2-Peer, along with members of the Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Advisory Council and the Mental Health Advisory Council will be on hand to hear from residents about their suggestions, concerns and questions. Continue reading


Celebrate Emancipation Day

Emancipation Day – the 153rd anniversary of freedom for more than 3,000 men, women and children in the District of Columbia, roughly eight months before President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation freed slaves in 1863.

Every year, on April 16th we gather to celebrate Emancipation Day, celebrate what we have accomplished and remember that we have a lot of work to do as we continue our fight for statehood and equal rights.

This year, I hope you will celebrate Emancipation Day by attending one or more of our marquee events:
Emancipation Day Parade: Join thousands of attendees at Freedom Plaza for the Parade on Pennsylvania, featuring U.S. Armed Forces bands and units, DC neighborhood groups and organizations, grand historic balloons and more. 
Date and Time: Thursday, April 16, 2015 from 11am to 1pm
Location: From 4th St, NW and Pennsylvania Ave, NW to Freedom Plaza
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Ovechkin Ready for Caps-Islanders Series with Refreshed Outlook

(ABC)–For all of his goals and trio of MVP trophies, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin never has been past the second round of the NHL playoffs.

Didn’t even qualify at all a year ago.
So 23 months will have passed between postseason games for Ovechkin when his Capitals host John Tavares and the New York Islanders on Wednesday night to begin their first-round Eastern Conference series.
“He seems to be having more fun, to me. I think it’s more enjoyable for him to be in this environment,” Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan said after a team practice earlier this week.
“He’s more comfortable with his game, the way it is now – and it’s a lot more fun when you’re playing as a team and you’re winning as a team. So he’s more enthusiastic.” Continue reading


Ex-NFL Player Aaron Hernandez Convicted of 1st-Degree Murder

Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison Wednesday in a deadly late-night shooting, sealing the downfall of an athlete who once had a $40 million contract and a standout career ahead of him.
Hernandez, 25, looked to his right, pursed his lips and sat down after the jury forewoman pronounced him guilty in the slaying of Odin Lloyd, a 27-year-old landscaper and amateur weekend football player who was dating the sister of Hernandez’s fiancee. The conviction carried a mandatory sentence of life without parole and automatically triggers an appeal to Massachusetts’ highest court.
Hernandez’s mother, Terri, and his fiancee, Shayanna Jenkins, cried and gasped when they heard the verdict, and Lloyd’s mother also cried. Jenkins wept loudly on his mother’s shoulder. Hernandez, his eyes red, mouthed to them: “Be strong. Be strong.” Continue reading


Wizards Unveil New Logo

Just ahead of the playoffs, the Washington Wizards unveiled their new primary logo Wednesday.
The new logo features the “monument ball” design that the team has used since 2011. There are also three stars on the logo, which represent Maryland, D.C. and Virginia.
With the new logo, the Wizards say they will no longer use the “wizard/partial moon” logo that had been in place since they changed their name from the Bullets in 1997. The team will however still use the “DC Hands” logo as a secondary logo.


Redskins 2015 Preseason Schedule Released

The NFL has released the 2015 preseason schedule and the Washington Redskins will start their four-game preseason on the road against the Cleveland Browns.
The following week, the Redskins return home as they host the Detroit Lions at FedEx Field. Washington is looking to win their preseason home opener for the eighth straight year.
Usually considered the dress rehearsal for the likely starters in preparation for the regular season, the team will travel north up I-95 to face the Baltimore Ravens. It will be the eighth time in the last 11 seasons these two teams will play in the preseason.
Washington ends the preseason at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Continue reading


Nationals’ Jayson Werth Returns From DL for Red Sox Series

(NBC)–Washington Nationals left fielder Jayson Werth has been reinstated from the 15-day disabled list so he can join the team for its series at the Boston Red Sox.
To make room on their roster, the Nationals optioned outfielder Matt den Dekker to Triple-A Syracuse before Monday’s game at Fenway Park.
Werth missed the first six games of the season after surgery on his right shoulder in January. He did a rehab stint at Single-A Potomac last week.
Den Dekker is 0 for 2 as a reserve for the Nationals this season. He was acquired March 30 in a trade that sent lefty reliever Jerry Blevins to the New York Mets.


Jordan Spieth Wins Masters Tying Under Par Record

Jordan Spieth never really suffered. Certainly not like Phil Mickelson, who came close so many times before finally winning his first major title.
Yet, not long after Spieth slipped on the green jacket at age 21, the second-youngest champion in the history of the Masters, he pondered what pushed him to one of the game’s greatest performances.
There was that runner-up finish in the 2014 Masters, when he had a two-shot lead with 11 holes to play but faded to a runner-up finish behind Bubba Watson. A fine showing, indeed, for someone so young playing Augusta National for the first time.
But it gnawed at Spieth. Continue reading


Court Refuses to lift block on Obama’s Immigration Plan

(UPI) — A Texas federal judge refused to lift a temporary block on a White House immigration plan that would defer deportation for up to 5 million people in the country illegally.
U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen rejected a request by the federal government that he stay his Feb. 16 decision, which granted a preliminary injunction blocking President Barack Obama’s executive action. He said the government has not “shown any credible reason” why the order needed to be set into action immediately.
Texas and 25 other states, largely Republican, sued to stop Obama’s action, saying it was a constitutional overreach of power and would force them to spend more on law enforcement, health care and education.
“There is no pressing, emergent need for this program,” Hanen wrote in the order. “If there had been such a need,” the Department of Homeland Security “could have implemented the program at any time in the last five or ten years.” Continue reading


Mayor Bowser, DCPS and Howard University Launch New Dual Enrollment Partnership

Program offers free college courses and dual credit for Banneker and McKinley Technology High School Students

Mayor Muriel Bowser joined District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) Chancellor Kaya Henderson and Howard University President Dr. Wayne A.I. Frederick at the historic university to announce a new partnership aimed at providing expanded learning opportunities and advanced college preparation for high school students.

Beginning school year 2015-2016, 12th-grade students at Banneker and McKinley Technology high schools will have the opportunity to enroll in college courses at Howard University and earn high school and college credit. Students will have access to undergraduate course offerings and can take up to two courses per semester and one course during the summer session. The University will waive all tuition and fees; the Office of the State Superintendent of Education will cover the cost of books and transportation. Continue reading


U.S. job openings reach 14-year high; hiring dips

(UPI) — The number of job openings in the United States reached a 14-year high of 5.1 million in February, but hiring lightly lowered.
Job openings increased by 168,000, the highest since January 2001. Hiring decreased to 4.9 million from 5 million. The hiring rate is holding at 3.5 percent.
The number of people hired in the fields of education, healthcare, professional and business services, leisure and hospitality increased, but hires in construction, manufacturing and retail decreased.
“It’s one of the signs the labor market is strong,” Jacob Oubina, a senior U.S. economist at RBC Capital Markets, told Bloomberg. “Openings continue to make new cycle-highs. It says something about the intentions employers have put forth.” Continue reading


DOES to Launch Summer Youth Employment Program Expansion

The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) announced the application process for the District’s expanded 2015 Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) open to youth ages 22-24 years old. Mayor Bowser announced the expansion of the SYEP in January to now serve District youth up to the age of 24.

“Expanding the Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program to include 22-24 year olds is extremely important to me,” said Mayor Bowser. “This investment in our youth is a vital part of my vision to put more DC residents on pathways to the middle class. By providing young adults with opportunities to work, earn and learn, we are ensuring they have the resources needed to compete in the local workforce and secure viable careers with good paying wages.”
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Bill Gates’ 40th anniversary email to employees: Make tech accessible to all

(UPI) — Bill Gates sent an inspiring email to all of Microsoft’s employees for the 40th anniversary of him and Paul Allen starting the company.
Microsoft was started on April 4, 1975, in Albuquerque, N.M. The company is referred to as one of the most valuable companies in the world, and it has created a few billionaires and thousands of millionaires. The company has expanded from computers to video games, with the Xbox, and it owns the calling program Skype.
Here’s what Gates said to his employees, which was first posted on Twitter by Amit Roy Choudhary:
Early on, Paul Allen and I set the goal of a computer on every desk and in every home. It was a bold idea and a lot of people thought we were out of our minds to imagine it was possible. It is amazing to think about how far computing has come since then, and we can all be proud of the role Microsoft played in that revolution. Continue reading


The American Academy of Pediatrics warns caregivers to measure kids’ drug doses accurately

An article in Forbes.com by an ACSH advisor, Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician on staff at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, called our attention to a recently-released policy statement issued by the AAP. The pediatrics academy took official notice of the fact that too many people caring for infants and children were following label directions calling for some fraction of teaspoons or tablespoons of liquid medication for little ones requiring such therapies.

The new metric dosing guidelines, set forth in the AAP report, represent an important effort to increase the safety of dispensing medications to children. They are now urging not only parents and caregivers, but medical providers and pharmacists, to use only one method of measuring out medications — the metric system — using milliliters or mls. Continue reading


The Skin Cancer Foundation Urges Teens to Go With Their Own Glow This Prom Season

Prom season is just around the corner, and as teens prepare for the most memorable night of high school, The Skin Cancer Foundation encourages them to forgo a dangerous indoor tan in favor of a natural glow. Teens considering heading to a tanning salon to achieve a pre-prom glow should beware: using a tanning bed before age 35 increases melanoma risk by 75 percent. In addition, just one indoor UV tanning session increases users’ risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma by 67 percent and basal cell carcinoma by 29 percent.
“Any tan, whether you get it on the beach or in a tanning bed, is dangerous and damages your skin,” said Perry Robins, MD, president of The Skin Cancer Foundation. “A tan comes with consequences. In addition to increasing skin cancer risk, tanning leads to premature skin aging, including wrinkles, leathery skin and age spots.” Continue reading



The Shawn Carter Foundation Scholarship provides financial support to high school students as well as undergraduate students entering college for the first time. The purpose of the scholarship is to help under-served students who may not be eligible for other scholarships.

Students who have either graduated from high school or earned their G.E.D. may apply. Minimum grade point average is 2.0. Students must have a strong desire to go to college and earn their degree. Students must also have a desire to give back to their communities. Continue reading


Scholarships Help Multicultural Women Close Diversity Gap as they Prepare for a Career in Healthcare

Sixteen scholarships awarded by the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women and Macy’s aim to support diversity among healthcare professionals

The American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women and Macy’s are once again set to award 16 scholarships of $2,500 each to help increase the number of diverse healthcare professionals, in an effort to help improve culturally-sensitive, patient-centered care.

The Go Red™ Multicultural Scholarships are part of Macy’s Multicultural Fund, which was created in 2009 to increase diversity in the medical field. Macy’s is the founding national sponsor of the association’s Go Red For Women® and Go Red Por Tu Corazón. Continue reading


Nurses Join Military on Mission to 11 Countries to Provide Humanitarian Aid

Nurse volunteers with Registered Nurse Response Network (RNRN), a disaster relief project of National Nurses United and the California Nurses Foundation, will embark this week upon the USNS Comfort (T-AH 20), a Military Sealift Command ship, joining military personnel and health care professionals, engineers and environmental experts for a humanitarian mission that includes mission stops in 11 countries in South America, Central America and the Caribbean.

Introduced in 2007, Continuing Promise is a joint effort between the U.S. Navy, Army, Air Force, civilian mariners and a broad coalition of non-governmental organizations, including RNRN.

Between April and late September, groups of volunteers will perform hundreds of surgical procedures at no cost, treat thousands of patients, reinforce local infrastructure, and provide veterinary services in the 11 countries being served: Belize, Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Panama, Dominica and Honduras. Continue reading


Despite Controlling $14 Trillion in Wealth, American Women Still Have Challenges to Overcome

According to a report released by the BMO Wealth Institute that examines the professional and personal strides women have made in the last 50 years, many women still face unresolved challenges despite their success.

The report, titled Financial Concerns of Women, details the significant achievements of American women in recent generations, including:

· Women currently control 51 percent, or $14 trillion, of personal wealth in the U.S. and are expected to control $22 trillion by 2020.

· They are the primary breadwinners in more than 40 percent of American households, which is an almost four-fold increase since 1960.

· Women now hold the majority (52 percent) of management, professional and related positions in the U.S. Women also own 30 percent of all private businesses, employing more than 7.8 million Americans.
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YouTube Kids features too many ads

(UPI) — YouTube’s kid-friendly app is exposing children to too much advertising, a Federal Trade Commission complaint filed by a group of children’s advocacy organizations said.
The app, launched in February, features numerous educational videos and original episodes of child-oriented programs. But it also exposes children to a barrage of commercials for corporate entities like McDonald’s, Mattel and Hasbro.
A coalition of eight advocacy groups say those commercials violate federal laws against unfair or deceptive marketing.
The complaint filed Tuesday alleges Google, the parent company of YouTube Kids, violates the law by mixing advertising and programming in a way that young children can’t distinguish, featuring “branded channels” for major corporations and failing to disclose business relationships for user-generated content.
“YouTube Kids is the most hyper-commercialized media environment for children I have ever seen,” Dale Kunkel, professor of communication, University of Arizona said in a news release from Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood. “Many of these advertising tactics are considered illegal on television, and it’s sad to see Google trying to get away with using them in digital media.” Continue reading


Bowser Administration Joins 73 Cities & Counties to Take Legal Action in Support of Immigration Reforms

73 Cities & Counties Signed On From 27 States, Representing 43 Million People Nationwide

As part of Cities United for Immigration Action, Mayor Muriel Bowser announced today that Washington, D.C. will join 73 cities and counties to file a new friend-of-the-court brief in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in the Texas vs. United States lawsuit, urging immediate implementation of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration. The brief demonstrates robust support from the country’s largest cities – as well as its suburbs and rural areas – for the President’s reforms. These reforms include providing temporary relief from deportation to immigrants with longstanding ties to the U.S. and who pass a background check and meet other criteria.

The cities and counties – representing 43 million people across the country – argue that the district court judge who temporarily blocked implementation of the programs failed to consider the significant harms to America’s local governments caused by this delay. Today’s brief more than doubles the number of local governments that had previously voiced opposition to the lawsuit brought by states seeking to block President Obama’s immigration reform efforts. Continue reading


Virginia Schools Kick Off Campaign to Encourage Safe Teen Driving During High-Risk Months

With warm weather just around the corner, schools from across the commonwealth are kicking off a safety campaign for youth and teens to encourage safe driving behaviors and passenger safety.
The campaign, called “Arrive Alive,” focuses on the increased risk of teen driver crashes during the spring and summer months and during prom and graduation season. The campaign is sponsored by Youth of Virginia Speak Out (YOVASO) and the Virginia State Police. It is funded by a grant from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Highway Safety Office.
Close to 60 high and middle schools are participating in Arrive Alive which kicked off April 6 and runs through May 8. During the campaign, students will work in peer-to-peer groups to develop programs and social media messages that influence their peers to be safer in a vehicle. Middle schools will focus their campaign on how to be a safe passenger, seat belt use, and learning about good safety behaviors and attitudes prior to the driving years. High schools will focus on the prevention of risky driving and passenger behaviors, such as not wearing a seat belt, driver distractions, speeding, driving with too many passengers, drinking and driving, and joy riding or “cruising.” Continue reading


Slender Seven Introduces Healthy, Eggless Cookie Dough Made With Organic Beans

Slender Seven launched it’s first consumer packaged good into the retail market Friday: a Healthy & Eggless Cookie Dough made with organic beans. The cookie dough is all-natural, allergy friendly and low in sugar.

“Consumers should be able to satisfy their sweet tooth without compromising their healthy lifestyle,” explains Nikki Azzara, Founder and CEO of Slender Seven. “The wholesome ingredients in our recipe were purposely selected to provide health benefits, as well as embody our motto: Cook Simply, Eat Healthy & Feel Happy.”

Slender Seven Healthy & Eggless Cookie Dough contains organic, non-GMO (genetically modified organism) ingredients that provide a great source of protein, iron, fiber, antioxidants and healthy fats. It is free of gluten, flour, dairy, soy, peanuts, trans fats and preservatives. Continue reading



The White House Historical Association and the Washington Nationals recently announced an innovative, multi-year partnership that will expand the association’s efforts to educate the public on the rich history of the White House and expand its mission of preserving White House history.

The partnership marks the White House Historical Association’s first partnership with a professional sports team. This launch coincides with the association’s honoring of President Calvin Coolidge with the 2015 Official White House Christmas Ornament. Coolidge is recognized as being closely tied to the Washington Senators during his administration. “Coolidge Luck” was often touted for the Senators winning two of their three pennants while he was in office, and Coolidge’s wife Grace was known as the First Lady of Baseball. Continue reading


Mayor Bowser Welcomes Funk Festival to Historic U Street

Mayor Muriel Bowser will welcome the Funk Festival to Historic U Street on Saturday, May 2nd. The U Street Funk Parade celebrates the District’s music and culture, in the neighborhood known as the heart of the city’s musical heritage.

“The U Street Funk Parade embodies the spirit of the District,” said Mayor Bowser. “It brings our communities together and honors the city’s cultural heritage that we’ve all come to know and love.”

The U Street Funk Festival is a daylong collaborative celebration with three parts: the day fair, the parade, and the music festival. Each part of the celebration offers different opportunities to embrace the District’s music and culture. The U Street Funk Parade is free and open to the public.
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Mysteries of Metalpoint Technique Revealed in First Comprehensive Exhibition

In the first comprehensive exhibition on the evocative medium of metalpoint—the art of drawing with a metal stylus—some 100 works showcase the surprising range of effects created by master draftsmen for centuries. On view at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, from May 3 through July 26, 2015, Drawing in Silver and Gold: Leonardo to Jasper Johns includes works from the Middle Ages to the present, on loan from major museums in Europe and the United States, with nearly half on loan from the British Museum, London.

“Artists since the Renaissance have used metalpoint to create some of the most magnificent and technically accomplished drawings in the history of art,” said Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art, Washington. “We are delighted to present this exhibition in collaboration with the British Museum, and hope that these discoveries and the beauty of the drawings will appeal to scholars, artists, and visitors.” Continue reading


THEARC Theater Celebrates 5th Annual Double Time Jazz Series

Concerts by Lori Williams, Art Sherrod, Jr. and Take 6

THEARC Theater celebrates the 5th anniversary of its popular Double Time Jazz series with concerts by vocalist, Lori Williams and saxophonist, Art Sherrod, Jr. on April 3, 2015 and 10 time Grammy winning a capella group, Take 6 on Friday, April 17, 2015.

Take 6, one the most awarded R&B vocal groups in history, celebrates 25 years in the music industry during a monumental performance at THEARC Theater! The sextet blends the genres of gospel, jazz, R&B, and pop for a unique sound guaranteed to captivate any audience. Take 6 has traveled the world and received praise from music legends such as Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Ella Fitzgerald and Whitney Houston. Guests will be treated to an opening performance by violinist, vocalist and DC native, Kendall Isadore. A red-carpet reception and meet & greet for VIP ticket holders precedes the show at 7:00 PM. Showtime begins at 8:00 PM on Friday, April 17, 2015. A free open sound check for local schools starts at 5pm. Schools that would like to attend the open sound check should email Kimberly Douglas, Director, Theater Operations and Programming at kdouglas@thearcdc.org. Continue reading


John W. Kluge Center Celebrates 15 Years of Scholarship
With ScholarFest

Seventy top scholars in foreign policy, history, ethics, religion and other fields within the humanities and social sciences will convene on Capitol Hill over a two-day period to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress with the premiere ScholarFest, a unique mixture of rapid-fire dialogues, panels and scholarly conversations on a series of thought-provoking topics.

Participants include three previous recipients of the John W. Kluge Prize for Achievement in the Study of Humanity, in dialogue together for the first time: sociologist Fernando Henrique Cardoso, the 34th president of Brazil and 2013 prize recipient; historian and 2008 prize recipient Romila Thapar; and historian and 2006 prize recipient Yu Ying-shih. They will join more than 70 top scholars—all former chairs and fellows at the Kluge Center—including astrobiologist David Grinspoon, sociologist William Julius Wilson and Senior Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit John T. Noonan, Jr. during this one-of-a-kind event.
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Music Director and Conductor Piotr Gajewski and the National Philharmonic announced its 2015-2016 season, as it enters its second decade of performing at the Music Center at Strathmore. The National Philharmonic’s new season at Strathmore kicks off in mid-September with American 20th-century masterpieces: Leonard Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances from West Side Story and Gershwin’s American in Paris and Concerto in F with pianist Thomas Pandolfi, a leading interpreter of the works of Gershwin. Tenor Issachah Savage, who recently made his Metropolitan Opera debut, sings the title role in the powerful concert opera Rienzi by Wagner. Pianist Brian Ganz, who is halfway through his journey to perform all of Chopin’s works, will be joined by Polish soprano Iwona Sobtka in an evening dedicated to the rarely performed songs of Chopin. 

Other soloists returning this season include violinist Chee-Yun performing Mozart’s witty Violin Concerto No. 4, cellist Zuill Bailey playing two Vivaldi concertos and soprano Danielle Talamantes featured in Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass. In addition, National Philharmonic concertmaster Colin Sorgi will play Bach’s brilliant Violin Concerto No. 2 and Mr. Ganz will perform Mozart’s gorgeous Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor.
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Hair Cuttery and National Network to End Domestic Violence Partner for Share a Haircut Program

Goal of Donating 75,000 Haircuts to Victims of Domestic Violence

Hair Cuttery and the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) are teaming up for Hair Cuttery’s Share a Haircut program. On Monday and Tuesday, May 4-5, for every haircut purchased at one of Hair Cuttery’s nearly 900 salons on the East Coast, in New England and the Midwest, a free haircut certificate will be donated to a victim of domestic violence through NNEDV’s national network.

“We are honored to have the National Network to End Domestic Violence as a charity partner,” said Dennis Ratner, CEO and founder of Hair Cuttery. “Our Share a Haircut program is powerful and it allows our company, thanks to the help of our stylists and clients, to be a positive influence on the communities where we do business.”
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DC’s Taste of the Nation for No Kid Hungry, the District’s Favorite Culinary Event for a Cause, Returns 

Residents of our nation’s capital can enjoy the most celebrated food in the DC area on April 13, from 7:00pm-9:30pm at the National Building Museum 401 F Street NW, Washington, DC
when DC’s Taste of the Nation for No Kid Hungry returns to the historic National Building Museum. The annual tasting event will feature the city’s top chefs, restaurateurs, sommeliers and mixologists united for a cause: making sure all children in this country get the healthy food they need, every day. Proceeds from the event benefit No Kid Hungry’s work to end childhood hunger in America.

Event host & Food Network star Melissa d’Arabian, chefs Nicholas Stefanelli (Masseria), Victor Albisu (Taco Bamba, Del Campo) and Bryan Voltaggio (VOLT, Lunchbox, Family Meal, Range, Aggio), along with mixologists Gina Chersevani (Buffalo & Bergen), Derek Brown (The Columbia Room, Mockingbird Hill, Southern Efficiency, Eat the Rich), Duane Sylvestre (Bourbon Steak) and sommelier Nadine Brown (Charlie Palmer Steak).
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Black College Expo DC/Maryland Gives Out Big Dollars

Students attending the 12th Annual BLACK COLLEGE EXPO have reasons to celebrate their success in being accepted into college.

The 12th Annual Black College Expo (BCE) hosted by the National College Resources Foundation (NCRF) on Saturday, March 14, 2015 at Bowie State University (Gym) awarded $411, 000 in scholarships, accepted over 450 students into college and some 1900 students and parents were in attendance. College recruiters were excited with the level of talented students that visited their booths for that up-close and personal, one-on-one interaction with future scholars of their programs. Students can now prepare to pack their bags to head off to colleges and universities of their choice in pursuit of a college education. Parents were thrilled to know that with the scholarships awarded and financial aid info given at the event, they have no worries about trying to find money for their teenʼs education. It is a win, win and win for everyone at this event. Continue reading


“One Stop Fair Housing Shop” to be Held April 21 in Silver Spring

Housing professionals and providers will have an opportunity to meet fair housing regulators in Montgomery County at the free Fair Housing Educational Forum on Tuesday, April 21, from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Silver Spring Civic Building, One Veterans Place.
The “One-Stop Fair Housing Shop” is sponsored by the Montgomery County Office of Human Rights, the Interagency Fair Housing Coordinating Group and the Department of Housing and Community Affairs and will include a complimentary lunch. The forum will focus on fair housing requirements for people with disabilities, reasonable accommodations, use of service animals and responsibilities of common ownership communities. Continue reading


Prince George’s County Government to Test its Emergency Readiness Plan for the Health Department

The Prince George’s County Health Department (PGCHD), in collaboration with the Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department, Police Department, Office of Central Services, Prince George’s County Public Schools and other stakeholders will conduct a series of emergency preparedness exercises this week. The exercises will test the Health Department’s plan for activation, operation, and recovery in response to a public health incident that would require mass distribution of medications or vaccines.
“In order to ensure that we are prepared as a county for public health emergencies and other disasters, it is critical that we conduct these types of drills. These exercises will allow us to evaluate and assess our readiness and to improve our emergency operations in response to public health incidents,” said Pamela B. Creekmur, Health Officer. “We will simulate a non-medical Point of Dispensing (POD) Operation, demonstrating the proper allocation of staff, resources and coordination required to respond in the event of a biological attack, such as smallpox or aerosolized anthrax in Prince George’s County.” Continue reading


Rocketship Education to Break Ground on New School in 
Washington D.C.’s Ward 8

On Tuesday, April 14, 2015, Rocketship Education will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for a new elementary school in the Washington, D.C. region. The school will serve K-5 grade students in the Ward 8 community, providing an education based on three pillars: excellent teachers and leaders, blended personalized learning for Rocketeers, and deeply engaged parents. This event will mark a significant milestone towards the school’s opening in August 2016.

Rocketship Education is a nonprofit network of public charter elementary schools working to eliminate the achievement gap in our lifetime. Rocketship schools serve primarily low-income students in neighborhoods where access to excellent schools is limited. Rocketship schools are also located in three others regions: San Jose, California; Nashville, Tennessee; and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Continue reading


Earth Day 2015 at Union Station: EARTH RIGHT NOW!

DC Landmark hosts event to celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd

On Tuesday, April 14, 2015, Rocketship Education will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for a new elementary school in the Washington, D.C. region. The school will serve K-5 grade students in the Ward 8 community, providing an education based on three pillars: excellent teachers and leaders, blended personalized learning for Rocketeers, and deeply engaged parents. This event will mark a significant milestone towards the school’s opening in August 2016.

Rocketship Education is a nonprofit network of public charter elementary schools working to eliminate the achievement gap in our lifetime. Rocketship schools serve primarily low-income students in neighborhoods where access to excellent schools is limited. Rocketship schools are also located in three others regions: San Jose, California; Nashville, Tennessee; and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Continue reading


Giant Food Donates 200 Hams to the Capital Area Food Bank

(Left to right) Christel Hair, senior director of strategic partnerships and community engagement, Capital Area Food Bank; Felis Andrade director of marketing and external communications, Giant Food; Molly McGlinchy, deputy director of food resources, Capital Area Food Bank; and Dylan Menguy, media and events coordinator, Capital Area Food Bank pose with some of the 200 hams Giant donated to the Capital Area Food Bank on Tuesday, March 31, 2015. This is one of five donations Giant is making to Feeding America food banks across the Mid-Atlantic region, totaling 1,000 hams.


DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Fiscal Year 2016 Grants Now Accepting Applications

 The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) is now accepting applications for its Fiscal Year 2016 funding opportunities for District of Columbia artists, nonprofits and arts organizations. Grants are available for a variety of uses, including programming support, operating support, arts education, and public artworks.

“The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities is an important resource for supporting local arts programming and arts education,” said Kay Kendall, Chair of the DCCAH. “The creative economy and the creative workforce sustain the District as a cultural capital.”

“Our grant programs represent an investment by the city in the arts and humanities,” said Lisa Richards Toney, Interim Director of the DCCAH. “We encourage all those who are eligible to apply.” Continue reading


Mayor Bowser and The Duke Ellington School of The Arts to Honor Jesse Owens with Student Mural

On Friday, April 10, at 4:300 pm in The Reeves Center, 2000 14th Street NW. The legacy of Jesse Owens, the celebrated track star of the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, is being honored and memorialized by the Museum Studies Department at The Duke Ellington School of The Arts, DC Office of Motion Picture and Television Development (MPTD) and DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) with a full size mural on the wall of The Reeves Center. Duke Ellington alumnus and resident artist, Mark Walker, brought the mural design to life. Mr. Walker guided students in awakening their imagination to create a mural that reflected both the ideas of Owens’ struggle and his ultimate triumph. Mayor Muriel Bowser will present the Duke Ellington School of The Arts with a salute from the city for furthering black history education in the community. Continue reading



Ceremony to be followed by Arsenal of Democracy World War II Victory Capitol Flyover
The Friends of the National World War II Memorial (Friends) and the National Park Service (NPS) will pay tribute to the Greatest Generation during a special event at the National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. on Friday, May 8, 2015 at 10:30 a.m. commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Allied Forces Victory in the Atlantic and the end of World War II in Europe.
Record numbers, including hundreds of World War II veterans, are expected to gather at the World War II Memorial to mark this historic occasion.
As part of the ceremony, more than a dozen World War II veterans and representatives of the United States and the embassies of Allied Nations will lay wreaths at the “Freedom Wall” of the Memorial in memory of the more than 400,000 Americans and 60 million people killed worldwide during the deadliest military conflict in human history. Continue reading


Cannabis Career Training Comes to the Nation’s Capital June 27-28

Oaksterdam University to Prepare Washingtonians to Work in the Legal Cannabis Industry

On June 27-28, Oaksterdam University – the nation’s only recognized cannabis college – will bring to Washington, DC, the city’s first certified career training program for candidates seeking to enter the legal cannabis industry. The two-day event, to be held at the Capital Hilton located at 1001 16th Street, NW, is sponsored by local cannabis entrepreneur Ben David Sheppard and his portfolio of cannabis companies, MD Canna-Care & Cultivation, House of Jane and Jane’s Brew Gourmet Coffees teas and other fine edibles.

The training will provide participants with the critical information they need to pursue a cannabis career, from opening a dispensary or delivery business, to structuring a legal cannabis entity, understanding their legal rights under the District’s and other states’ laws, bud tending, vending and more. The Washington, DC, certification program is a good testing ground for Oaksterdam as it eyes Washington, DC, as a potential headquarters for its planned East Coast campus. Continue reading


Comeback! Duke Tops Wisconsin 68-63 for National Title

(ABC)–Call them freshmen. Please, do not call them kids.

Led by Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor, Duke’s talented group of youngsters outscored Wisconsin by 14 points over the final 13 minutes Monday night to grit out a 68-63 victory for the program’s fifth national title.
Okafor, the likely first pick in the NBA draft if he decides to leave, got outplayed by Badgers center Frank Kaminsky but came through when the pressure was highest. He made two straight buckets over Kaminsky, sandwiched between a pair of 3-pointers from Jones to help the Blue Devils (35-4) turn a one-time nine-point deficit into an eight-point lead with 1:22 left. Continue reading


3-Peat: UConn Beats Notre Dame 63-53 for 3rd Straight Title

(ABC)–Geno Auriemma and his UConn Huskies are a perfect 10.

The Hall of Fame coach joined some elite company in UCLA’s John Wooden after tying the Wizard of Westwood with his 10th NCAA Tournament title.
“Obviously it’s a very significant number because that’s the number that’s been out there and people want to talk about it. I’ll be the first to say I’m not John Wooden and I got a bunch of friends who’d tell you I’m right, I’m not” Wooden, Auriemma said. “As I said the other day I just think what we’ve done here in the last 20 years is pretty remarkable in its own right.
“I’ll let the people who write the history decide where I fit in.” Continue reading

Rob Manfred

Commissioner Makes it Official: Nats to Host 2018 MLB All-Star Game

(ABC)–Commissioner Rob Manfred announced Monday afternoon that the Washington Nationals will host the 2018 All-Star Game.

Washington will be the fourth consecutive National League team to host baseball’s All-Star Game, following the Cincinnati Reds this year, the San Diego Padres in 2016 and the Miami Marlins in 2017.
When Miami’s turn to have the game was announced in February, MLB said leagues will continue to alternate who bats last, no matter what city stages the All-Star game. So the American League will bat last in the 2016 game at San Diego and in the 2018 game at Washington. Continue reading


Nationals Fall to Mets in Home Opener

(CBS)–Max Scherzer took a no-hitter into the sixth inning of his Washington debut but was unable to overcome two costly errors by shortstop Ian Desmond, and the New York Mets beat the Nationals 3-1 in their season opener Monday.

Bartolo Colon pitched six clean innings for the Mets, giving up only Bryce Harper’s third opening-day homer. Lucas Duda hit a two-run single with two outs in the sixth, putting New York ahead with its first hit of the year.


Woods Back at the Masters and Expecting to Win

(CBS)–Never mind that Tiger Woods hasn’t played in nearly two months and hasn’t won the Masters in 10 years. He says his game is back in order and he expects to be wearing another green jacket at the end of the week.
In his first news conference since he withdrew after 11 holes on Feb. 5 at Torrey Pines, Woods said Tuesday winning remains his greatest motivation.
Woods started the year with a career-high 82 in the Phoenix Open and an inability to chip. He says he worked from sunrise to sunset at home in Florida, at times so frustrated he hurled a few clubs. But he says he stuck with it and reached a point that he could compete at the highest level.


Obama creates sanctions on cyberattacks, declares national emergency

(UPI) — President Barack Obama announced on Wednesday a new program of sanctions directed at nations and people outside the United States who participate in cyberattacks.
The Executive Order, “Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities,” authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to impose sanctions on people or entities who conduct malicious cyberattacks that resulted in or contributed to a significant threat to United States.
“The increasing prevalence and severity of malicious cyber-enabled activities originating from… outside the United States constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States,” Obama wrote in the order. “I hereby declare a national emergency to deal with this threat.” Continue reading


White House backs changes to military pay and retirement benefits

President Barack Obama said he “fully supports” a January proposal to make changes to the military pay and benefits systems, which may include adding a 401(k)-type retirement package.
Obama endorsed the proposal by the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission, appointed in 2013 to review a possible overhaul to military pay and benefits. Obama said his office will consider the commission’s 15 recommendations and work to “adopt or refine the specific proposals in as many instances as possible.”
Obama said he will report to Congress by April 30 the results of this initial work and with proposals that can be enacted quickly, adding “subsequent analysis may be needed for some of the recommendations.”
“I believe the recommendations are an important step forward in protecting the long-term viability of the all-volunteer force, improving quality-of-life for service members and their families and ensuring the fiscal sustainability of the military compensation and retirement systems,” he said in a written statement. ” I directed my team to consider these recommendations and to work with the Commission to adopt or refine the specific proposals in as many instances as possible.” Continue reading


District Releases Results of Common Lottery System

Over 20,000 Students Take Part in the Second Year of My School DC, which Matches Students with both DCPS and Public Charter Schools

Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the results of My School DC, the District’s common lottery system for D.C. Public Schools (DCPS) and nearly all public charter schools in its second year of operation. This process allows families to use a single online application. My School DC received 20,349 applications from families interested in attending one of over 200 DCPS or public charter schools for the 2015-16 school year, an increase of more than 3,000 applications over last year. The common lottery then maximized the number of students matched to a school they want to attend.
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mayor bowser

Mayor Bowser Announces Initiatives to Foster Economic Opportunity, Support Small Business Growth

Administration also unveils five upcoming projects ready for community development
Mayor Muriel Bowser recently announced two initiatives aimed at creating more quality affordable housing, supporting small and local business and expanding job opportunities for D.C. residents.
Our RFP is a first of its kind community-based request for proposals (RFP) initiative to engage residents prior to developer solicitation. The goal is to establish a process that is transparent to residents and holds the District accountable for building a project that reflects the interests of the community. Parcel 42 (Ward 6) will be the first location for this unique pilot program.
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Ways to Give Your Business a Competitive Edge

In case you are unaware, major changes to the shipping industry are afoot this year, which could cost businesses big bucks.
To better understand the transformation that is coming and find ways to save, read on:
* Beware of FedEx and UPS’s New Pricing. The two shipping giants recently implemented dimensional weight pricing for all Ground shipments. What that means for business owners is that the cost of shipping a package will be based in part on how much space it takes up in a truck, as opposed to just its weight. As a result, sending large, lightweight items by UPS or FedEx could end up costing as much as 50 percent more. With this new pricing in place, businesses should re-examine how they send merchandise or risk paying extra to ship some of their packages. Companies should consider alternative carriers, such as the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), to offset this new pricing model. Continue reading


New Treatment for Undiagnosed Sports Injuries — From Your Dentist

(NewsUSA) – Sports-related injuries are common and, when an athlete is hurt, care follows a proven, long-standing protocol of rehabilitation. But what happens when impact occurs to the head, face or jaw, and — at the time — no immediate injury is diagnosed?
Weeks, months or even years later, many of these players begin to experience headaches, TMJ/D, migraines, vertigo or tinnitus — estimated to impact 50 million people in the U.S. to some degree.
“Undiagnosed head trauma from sports injuries — or other types of impact, including minor car accidents — is one of the most common causes we see of chronic headaches, migraine, tinnitus and vertigo,” says Dr. Ben Burris, an orthodontist with 28 clinics in Arkansas. Continue reading


What Does It Mean to File a Tax Extension?

(NewsUSA) – Can’t file your tax return by the April 15 deadline? Taxpayers can request an automatic six-month extension of time to file the tax return. But, taxpayers beware, there is a catch. An extension is just an extension on the time to file the return — it is not an extension on the time to pay.
Taxpayers are required to estimate the amount of tax that may be due with the tax return and remit payment with the extension to avoid failure-to-pay penalties. These penalties and interest could accrue from April 15 until the tax is paid, regardless of the extension. If a balance is still owed when the actual tax return is filed, at least the penalties and/or interest will have been minimized. Continue reading


NCL’s 2015 All-America City Awards To Spotlight Engaging and Supporting Vulnerable Youth

The National Civic League is proud to announce the finalists for the 2015 All-America City Award (AAC). The Award, given to 10 communities each year, celebrates and recognizes neighborhoods, villages, towns, cities, counties, tribes and regions that engage residents in innovative, inclusive and effective efforts to tackle critical challenges.

This year AAC has a unique spotlight on community efforts to engage and support vulnerable young men and boys. The spotlight is in alignment with the White House’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative.

“At a time when the challenges facing our communities can seem overwhelming, these communities are a critical reminder of the good work being done all across the country,” said Gloria Rubio-Cortes, President of the National Civic League. “It’s an example of what’s possible when local government, business, nonprofits and residents come together to solve problems.” Continue reading


District of Columbia Among 17 Leading International Cities to Launch Global Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance

Mayor Bowser joined the mayors of 16 international cities across nine nations to launch the Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance, a collaboration of global cities committed to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80 percent or more by 2050 or sooner—the most ambitious GHG emission reduction targets undertaken by any cities across the globe. Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance cities are:

Berlin, Germany Minneapolis, MN, USA Stockholm, Sweden
Boston, MA, USA New York City, NY, USA Sydney, Australia
Boulder, CO, USA Oslo, Norway Vancouver, Canada
Copenhagen, Denmark Portland, OR, USA Washington DC, USA
London, United Kingdom San Francisco, CA, USA Yokohama, Japan
Melbourne, Australia Seattle, WA, USA

“Cities, like the District of Columbia, recognize that they are on the front lines of combatting climate change. We are committed to cutting our carbon emissions in order to avert the worst impacts of climate change,” said Mayor Bowser. “The District is showing that we can cut emissions while we create pathways to the middle class for our residents.” Continue reading


Colorectal Cancer Screening for African Americans: It’s about Prevention, Not Just Detection

By the National Cancer Institute
If a screening test could not only catch cancer early but also help to prevent it, could you think of any reason not to have the test?

All widely used cancer screening tests aim to detect cancer early, when treatment may be more successful. But several screening tests can also help find abnormal cells that have not yet become cancer, allowing them to be removed before they can cause problems. Colorectal cancer screening tests, for example, can help detect pre-cancerous growths called polyps. Removing these polyps prevents them from becoming cancer.
Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in both African American men and women. More than 18,000 new cases of colorectal cancer are diagnosed in African Americans annually. African Americans are also more likely to be diagnosed when colorectal cancer is advanced and, therefore, less treatable.
Between 2004 and 2010, the likelihood of surviving 5 years after a diagnosis of colorectal cancer was only 57 percent for African Americans, compared with 65 percent for white Americans. Continue reading


Hand’s Off: Don’t Raid Your Retirement Accounts!

After the Great Recession of 2008, an unpleasant phenomena resurfaced.
Because of financial distress from the recession, a large number of Americans began tapping into their secured retirement savings. African-Americans and Hispanics were the groups that dipped into these sacred instruments the most.
According to a 2012 study by Ariel Investments and AON Hewitt, African-American employees took these “hardship withdrawals” more than any other ethnic group. Fully, 8.8 percent of African-Americans took hardship withdrawals in 2010 as compared to 3.2 percent of Hispanics, 1.7 percent of whites and just 1.2 percent of Asian workers. Continue reading

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou Stamp Dedication to Feature Postmaster General, Oprah Winfrey, Ambassador Andrew Young and other Notables

The public has an opportunity to witness a historic event on Tuesday, April 7 when Postmaster General Megan Brennan will be joined by Oprah Winfrey, Ambassador Andrew Young and other notables in dedicating the Maya Angelou Forever stamp in Washington, DC.

The 11 a.m. first-day-of-issue stamp dedication ceremony will take place at the Warner Theatre, 513 13th St., NW. The event is free and open to the public. The public is asked to RSVP as soon as possible as seating is not guaranteed. Please RSVP at usps.com/mayaforever or by calling 866-268-3243 before 5 p.m. ET April 3. Each RSVP is limited to two (2) seats. Doors open at 9:30 a.m.
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Police to crack down on distracted driving

Police will be cracking down on distracted driving next month as new research suggests that the problem is even more prevalent among teens than previously feared.
“Access to crash videos has allowed us to better understand the moments leading up to a vehicle impact in a way that was previously impossible,” AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety President Peter Kissinger said. “The in-depth analysis provides indisputable evidence that teen drivers are distracted in a much greater percentage of crashes than we previously realized.” Continue reading

mayor bowser

Mayor Bowser Opens Transitional Home For Young Adults

Mayor Muriel Bowser and Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Brenda Donald opened a new transitional home for young people who need support to live independently and succeed. A partnership between the Child and Family Services Agency and the Department of Behavioral Health, the Wayne Place Project will help young men and women between the ages of 18-24 who might otherwise be homeless build the skills they need to be self-sufficient.
“Like any home, this is a place where young men and women can learn, grow, and take the next step to becoming well-balanced, independent adults,” said Mayor Bowser. “Living here, our young people will get expert support to help put them on a path to the middle class. They will be in school, working or getting the support they need to get a job.” Continue reading


Which Captain Mercaptan Comic Book Cover Is Your Favorite?

Vote by April 5 and top-voted student designs can win up to $10,000 for an elementary school
Elementary school students throughout the BGE service area took the challenge to design a comic book cover featuring the BGE gas safety hero Captain Mercaptan. Now, you can see the designs and vote on your favorites to help elementary schools win up to $10,000 to fund school enrichment programs.
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Duke Ellington School of the Arts Students Jam With top UK Band Jive Aces

On Monday 23 March, students at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts were treated to an unusual and impromptu visit from the United Kingdom’s top jive and swing band.

Young teen and Duke Ellington aspiring trumpeter, Jerry, who picked up his trumpet and jumped right in with the band, adding his lyricism to the Jive Aces rendition of “Jump Jive and Wail”, exclaimed that, “It was such an honor to play with the band. This was the best! This event made me decide to play in a big band”.
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Life under the Sea—an Educational Program to be Held at Davis Library

Marine biologist Andrew Wilson will lead an interactive program for children and adults about life under the sea, at the Davis Library on Saturday, April 11 at 1 p.m. The library is located at 6400 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda.
The free program, sponsored by Friends of the Library/Davis Chapter, will feature real sea creatures such as starfish, large snails and spider crabs that the audience can touch and feel.
Under the Sea, a marine professional organization presenting the program, was founded in the metropolitan area in 1995 and travels to schools, libraries, festivals, conferences and camps to instruct about and promote awareness of the aquatic environment as well as to promote conservation. Continue reading


Leggett Hails State Passage of $20 Million Matching Fund for Additional School Construction Funding

“I want to thank Speaker Michael Busch and the members of our Delegation who made bringing home additional funds to help us address our public school construction issues their number one priority,” said Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett. “Passing this legislation shows a commitment to working with Montgomery County to address the ongoing challenges of capacity problems in our public schools.” 

“I also appreciate the support we are receiving from Senate President Mike Miller and our Senate delegation.” 

Last year, Leggett joined with County Executives Rushern Baker of Prince George’s County and Kevin Kamenetz of Baltimore County, as well as with the Montgomery delegation and the Montgomery County Board of Education, in a campaign to win approval of a new source of school construction revenue from the State to be matched by the counties to address school construction needs. 
 Continue reading


Bike to Work Day Registration Open; 15 Pit Stops in Montgomery County

Montgomery County Commuter Services, Commuter Connections and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association are sponsoring this year’s Bike to Work Day on Friday, May 15. More than 10,000 area commuters are expected to participate in these free celebration of bicycling as a fun and healthy way to get to work. Drop in at one of 79 pit stops throughout Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia for refreshments and a chance to win bicycles and other prizes.
Cyclists are encouraged to register online. Free tee shirts will be distributed at pit stops to the first 14,000 registered participants. Continue reading

County Co-Sponsors Free Screening of Documentary and Panel Discussion About End-of-Life Issues

In recognition of National Healthcare Decisions Day, the public is invited to attend a free screening of the documentary, “Consider the Conversation,” on Thursday, April 16 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Silver Spring Civic Building. The hour-long film includes interviews about end-of-life with patients, families, health care professionals, clergy and national experts. Following the documentary, a panel of local experts will discuss the film and related end-of-life issues. Event planners hope to inspire dialogues between patients, family members and physicians about end-of-life issues in preparation for completion of their advance directives and seek to promote the film’s message that end-of-life is a “normal process rich in opportunity for human development.” Continue reading


Maryland planning agency to receive national award for planning excellence

The American Planning Association today announced the Maryland Department of Planning (MDP) as recipient of the 2015 National Planning Excellence Award for a Planning Agency. The association, which represents the field of city and regional planning in the United States, made the announcement at its Washington, D.C. headquarters. The Planning Excellence award annually recognizes one public sector agency with a consistent history of superior programs whose efforts have promoted the cause of planning-creating communities of lasting value.

The honor comes to MDP for its more than 50 years of advocacy, education and initiatives encouraging statewide growth and improving quality of life for Marylanders. Continue reading


DPR Survey on Programs Let us know the programs you want at DPR facilities

Marine biologist Andrew Wilson will lead an interactive program for children and adults about life under the sea, at the Davis Library on Saturday, April 11 at 1 p.m. The library is located at 6400 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda.
The free program, sponsored by Friends of the Library/Davis Chapter, will feature real sea creatures such as starfish, large snails and spider crabs that the audience can touch and feel.
Under the Sea, a marine professional organization presenting the program, was founded in the metropolitan area in 1995 and travels to schools, libraries, festivals, conferences and camps to instruct about and promote awareness of the aquatic environment as well as to promote conservation. Continue reading


Wizards & Verizon to Celebrate Fans on April 12

The Washington Wizards will hold their annual fan appreciation celebration presented by Verizon on Sunday, April 12, when the team hosts the Atlanta Hawks at 6 p.m. All fans in attendance will receive a Wizards-branded water bottle courtesy of Verizon.

Various activities will take place on the concourse including face painting, glitter tattoos, stilt walkers, a photo booth and an autograph session with local Bullets & Wizards Alumni Association members.
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Wizards Players to Attend Special Olympics Unified Game

For the fourth consecutive year, the Washington Wizards will collaborate with Special Olympics District of Columbia for their annual “Spread the Word to End the Word” awareness day, aimed at ending the hurtful use of the R-word (“retard(ed)”) negatively impacting people with intellectual disabilities. The game will be on Thursday, April 2, at 6:30 pm at St. Coletta’s of Greater Washington 1901 Independence Avenue, SE.
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Three Small Business Seminars to be Held at Germantown Library

A series of three seminars for small business will be presented in April, May and June by SCORE DC mentors at the Germantown Library, 19840 Century Blvd.
The seminars will be held according to the following schedule:
• April 23 “How to Start Your Business” [register];
• May 4 “How to Finance Your Business” [register]; and
• June 11 “How to Market Your Business” [register]
All will run from 7 to 9 p.m. and will include a question-and-answer session following the presentations.
In each session, mentors from SCORE will discuss factors that will help lead to a successful business, including: testing your business idea and readiness, financial planning and marketing your business.
For more information about the seminars, contact SCORE DC at bruce.gitlin@scorevolunteer.org. Continue reading


Towson University’s Debate Team Wins CEDA National Championship

Towson University Debate Team members Kevin Whitley ’15 and Troi Thomas ‘17 won the Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA) national championship, Monday, March 23 defeating the University of Kansis in the final found on a 6-3 decision. The win is the third CEDA championship secured by Towson. According to Assistant Director of Debate, Amber Kelsie, “we are now among a select group of schools, four including Towson University, to ever have back to back championships. We are the first school to ever win back to back with two entirely different teams. According to some metrics, this win places Towson #2 overall in CEDA success, behind Oklahoma University, the only school with four championships.”
In the course of the tournament the Towson team bested teams from elite schools including Harvard, Trinity, Michigan, Minnesota, Texas, Wayne State, Cal State Fullerton, Florida, Bard College, Pepperdine, Sacramento State, Vanderbilt, NYU and more. Continue reading


Easter Monday: a Washington Family Tradition

This year the Zoo is celebrating Easter Monday on Monday, April 6th! Please join us for special family-focused activities and live entertainment.
We’ll have a traditional Easter Egg Hunt with prizes for the kids participating. Older children will enjoy field games.
Special animal demonstrations are planned as well as visits from the Easter Panda!
This event will be held rain or shine. Please be advised the Zoo enhances security during high visitation days and guests may experience bag checks at a minimum. Continue reading


Compete in Home Matters 8K Race and Help HCSNV Beat Homelessness

Despite Northern Virginia’s high standard of living, there are still more than 1000 individuals and families who are currently homeless. Some of those members in our community lost their home due to eviction or foreclosure for missing a few rental or mortgage payments. The economic decline has exasperated the situation. That’s where the Housing & Community Services of Northern Virginia (HCSNV) comes in. In 2013, 1350 individuals and families were homeless, but due to prevention, rapid housing, and housing first strategies there was a 12% decrease in homelessness in Fairfax County, according to Fairfax County’s 2013 Point-in-Time Count of People Experiencing Homelessness. Continue reading


NEPC Embraces New Reformy Mission

The National Education Policy Center today announced that it is changing its mission statement and renouncing the pursuit of strong, equitable public schools.
NEPC director Kevin Welner admitted that the whole enterprise had been a ruse, and that he and his colleagues were really only in it for the money and for the elation of constant policy victories.
The NEPC’s mission statement has been “to produce and disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed research to inform education policy discussions. … guided by the belief that the democratic governance of public education is strengthened when policies are based on sound evidence.” Continue reading

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