October 15 Trail Unveiling Includes a Neighborhood Celebration and Health and Wellness Fair
Cultural Tourism DC invites residents and visitors to enjoy the history along one of DC’s oldest thoroughfares on Lift Every Voice: Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail. On this 12th DC Neighborhood Heritage Trail, walkers can journey to the first African American liberal arts university, President Abraham Lincoln’s commuter route, a German beer garden, Zora Neale Hurston’s boarding house, and historic Griffith Stadium as they encounter stories of the grocers, barbers, poets, and bootleggers who called this neighborhood home.
Cultural Tourism DC, the Georgia Ave./ Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail Working Group, and Howard University Hospital will host the trail’s official unveiling and neighborhood celebration on Saturday, October 15 at 11 am on the front lawn of the Howard University Hospital, at 2041 Georgia Avenue, NW. Howard University Hospital will host a Health and Wellness Fair with blood pressure screenings and information about hospital services and other free screenings offered by appointment, and the opening of a Griffith Stadium Exhibit.
The exhibit, which will run for one year, explores the legacy of Griffith Stadium. For more than 50 years, the stadium, the current site of the hospital, was the sports and entertainment center of the region. The exhibit will include a short documentary, photographs, and memorabilia from teams that played in the stadium, including the Washington Redskins, the Washington Senators/Nationals, the Homestead Grays, and the area’s colleges and universities.
Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham and Dr. Clive Callender of Howard University Hospital will speak at the program along with representatives from District Department of Transportation, and the Heritage Trail Working Group. After the formal program from 12 noon to 2 pm, participants are invited to explore the trail on their own, or take a guided walk led by Working Group members. A children’s scavenger hunt and the hospital’s Health and Wellness Fair complete the activities at the launch site.
The creation of the Heritage Trail was a community endeavor. Cultural Tourism DC began working with the Working Group in 2007 to collect stories and images. Then professional historians deepened the research and shaped the finished product into 19 poster-sized signs that combine historical photographs and maps to trace the neighborhood from its start as rural farmland to the lively community it is today.
The first sign on the trail is located outside the Shaw-Howard University Metrorail station 7th and S streets exit. The final sign is located at the Georgia Ave- Petworth Metrorail station at the Georgia Avenue, southbound exit. This 1.9-mile walk offers about two hours of gentle exercise. Participants may begin their journey at any sign.
Free summary trail guides in English and Spanish will be available at the launch as well as from merchants and institutions along the way. After the launch, distribution points, and a downloadable version, will be listed online at www.CulturalTourismDC.org. High-resolution images and guides, including a trail map, are available on request at Info@CulturalTourismDC.org.
The District of Columbia Neighborhood Heritage Trails are funded by the District Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of Transportation, and Events DC. Howard University Hospital and Progression Place underwrote the Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Neighborhood Trail launch.
About Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Working Group
The Working Group comprises neighborhood residents, business owners, activists, historians, community leaders, and others organized to develop and support the Heritage Trail in collaboration with Cultural Tourism DC. Special support was provided by Emergence Community Arts Collective, Pleasant Plains Civic Association, Howard University Community Association, and Howard University Professor Ernest Quimby and his spring 2008 sociology students.
About District of Columbia Neighborhood Heritage Trails
The DC Neighborhood Heritage Trails are the Official Walking Trails of Washington, DC. The Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail is the 12th trail in the series: Civil War to Civil Rights: Downtown Heritage Trail; City Within a City: Greater U Street Heritage Trail; Tour of Duty: Barracks Row Heritage Trail; River Farms to Urban Towers: Southwest Heritage Trail; Midcity at the Crossroads: Shaw Heritage Trail; Roads to Diversity: Adams Morgan Heritage Trail; Village in the City: Mount Pleasant Heritage Trail; Battleground to Community: Brightwood Heritage Trail; A Self-Reliant People: Deanwood Heritage Trail, Cultural Convergence: Columbia Heights Heritage Trail, and Top of the Town: Tenelytown Heritage Trail. Both the Downtown Heritage Trail and the Greater U Street Heritage Trail offer a free, downloadable audio tour. For more information about Neighborhood Heritage Trails, visit www.CulturalTourismDC.org.
About Cultural Tourism DC
Cultural Tourism DC is an independent nonprofit coalition of more than 230 culture, heritage, and community organizations throughout the Nation’s Capital. Cultural Tourism DC helps Metro-area residents and visitors experience Washington’s authentic culture and heritage. For more information, visit www.CulturalTourismDC.org or call 202-661-7581.