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Eastside Arts – October 2017

East of the River Book Festival
On Saturday, Oct. 14, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Rocketship Rise Academy will host the second annual East of the River Book Festival, organized by Anacostia resident and pedagogue Dr. Courtney Davis, who is also the author of “A Is for Anacostia.”

The free book festival will feature local authors, poets, and independent presses and bookstores as well as illustrators and educators. It will provide an opportunity for visitors to purchase books that support the area’s publishing and literary community. While Davis looks forward to connecting with her community at the festival, she welcomes all bibliophiles.

EotR Book Fair. Photo: Marty Williams

Davis traces the origins of the East of the River Book Festival to the first Lumen8Ancostia festival in April 2012, where she ran a popup to showcase her children’s book “A Is for Anacostia.” At the time, Davis also presented a few local authors whose programming included book readings. Since then, the book fair has grown in size and scope. The event has taken place at the St. Elizabeths East Pavilion and the Anacostia Arts Center.

At this year’s festival, one can expect to meet local authors, publishers, and independent booksellers, including Abike Farley, Barbara Parks-lee, Bri Jones, Chris Lowry, Carolivia Herron, Charnora Reid, Chester Hall, Christine Jackson, Classroom Culture, Courtney Davis, Crystal Judkins, Donna Sherard, Duende District Bookstore, East City Bookshop, Felicia Fort, Jared Parks, Jermaine Gassaway, Kia Dawkins, Kujichagulia Press, LaKesha Williams, Michael Roberson, Miguel Coppedge, Ronnie Sidney II, Serena Wills, Sherrita Berry-Pettus, students from Ketchan Elementary, Tambra Raye Stevenson, the Future Foundation, and Tracy Chiles McGhee.

Cbabi Bayoc (www.cbabibayoc.com), author of “when i become a dad,” will present his wonderfully illustrated children’s book at the festival. Bayoc is also a prolific figurative painter and illustrator. He will lead a workshop and collaborate with young artists to create a mural in the community. Also new to this year’s programming, the schedule features panel discussions and additional workshops providing information about storytelling, resources for indie authors, and using diverse books in school and community.

The festival is on Saturday, Oct. 14, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Rocketship Rise Academy located at 2335 Raynolds Place SE. More information can be found at www.eotrbookfest.com.

Rosalia Torres-Weiner, “Gateways/Portales,” 2016, a mural created for an exhibition at the Anacostia Smithsonian Community Museum.

Celebrate Latin American Culture at the Anacostia Community Museum
Sept. 15-Oct. 15 is the official Hispanic Heritage Month. The Anacostia Community Museum (ACM) invites the public to celebrate Latino culture through a series of programs including artist studio visits, film, and live music.

On Friday, Oct. 13, from 2 to 4 p.m., the ACM will screen “We Like It Like That: The Story of Latin Boogaloo” (2015; 80 minutes). Created in East Harlem, the Bronx, and parts of Brooklyn, Latin boogaloo fuses Afro-Cuban music with the ubiquitous American sounds of the 1960s such as R&B, jazz, funk, and rock. Its leaders include musicians Joe Baatan, Eddie Palmieri, Ray Barretto, and the Lebron Brothers. The documentary explores this melting pot moment in music through live performances, musical reviews, interviews, and archival footage. The audience will have the opportunity to discuss the movie after the viewing.

On Saturday, Oct. 14, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in celebration of the exhibition “Gateways/Portales” currently on view at the ACM, visit the studios of three area Latino artists: Luis Peralta, Wilfredo Valladares, and Samuel Miranda. The museum provides a shuttle to visit each studio. Luis Peralta has won awards for his portrait paintings and has exhibited widely at area galleries. Wilfredo Valladares works on sculpture including large public art commissions such as “Journey Anacostia” located at the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Good Hope Road SE. Samuel Miranda is a visual artist, educator, and poet whose published work includes “Full Moon on K Street: Poems about Washington, DC,” and the journals Chiron Review, MiPoesias, and Beltway Poetry Quarterly.

Hear Latin-jazz fusion for yourself! The ACM hosts The Rumba Club, a 28-year-old, Baltimore-based band that has performed with contemporary jazz legends such as Lionel Hampton, Monguito Santamaria, Manny Oquendo, Gary Thomas, Avishai Cohen’s International Vamp Band, and Lonnie Plaxico. Latin Beat magazine calls the Rumba Club sound “the finest dancing and listening music possible.”

Register online at www.anacostia.si.edu or call 202-633-4844 to register for any of these programs.

All Play Day 2017. Photo: 8 Arts & Culture

Play Day 2017
Play Day was conceived by 8 Arts & Culture in partnership with the DC Department of Parks and recreation in response to the alarming rates of childhood obesity in the United States. This year’s event will take place at Oxon Run Park and include a slew of free outdoor activities. Activities include contests such as flag football, dominos, potato sack races, dodgeball, card games, a pie-eating contest, kickball, Monopoly, a hula hoop challenge, horseshoes, chess, tug-of-war, tennis, checkers, a turtle contest, soccer, connect four, a talent show, softball, Uno, a dance competition, basketball, tic-tac-toe, a three-legged race, freeze gag, and a scavenger hunt.

For more information, contact 8 Arts & Culture via email at info@w8acc.org, online at www.8arts.org.

You may contact coordinators D. Brown at 202-702-3185 or Bryant Brown at 202-279-0821 or via email at Bryant.brown16@gmail.com.

Bruce McNeil, “Mouth of the Anacostia.” Photo: Bruce McNeil

Good Hope Road Underpass Public Art Unveiling
Building Bridges Across the River, the organization working to realize the 11th Street Bridge project, has commissioned a 90-foot set of LED frames beneath the I-295 underpass at Good Hope Road. The frames were unveiled on Sept. 29. According to the organization, “This art installation will change the underpass from an uninviting, dimly lit space to a bright welcoming entryway to Anacostia Park.”

In addition to restoring a connection between the Anacostia River and Historic Anacostia, which has been disconnected from the waterfront since completion of the interstate highway, Building Bridges Across the River aims to exhibit the work of east of the river artists on a rotating basis.

The intersection of Good Hope Road and Anacostia Drive SE is where the future Bridge Park is planned to connect Historic Anacostia to the Navy Yard. Artist Bruce McNeil, a Ward 7 resident, will inaugurate the public art installation with his photograph “The Mouth of the Anacostia River.” The work is expected to be on view through the end of the year.

On Sunday, Oct. 8, from 8 to 11 p.m., the Anacostia Arts Center rocks with three of DC’s finest rock bands: M.A.M. (Joe Manchester and his band), The Nightstreets, and Thayobleu. The bands ask audience members to “bring their outdoor voices.” Anacostia Arts Center is located at 1231 Good Hope Road SE. Tickets are $12 at the door.


Phil Hutinet is the publisher of East City Art, dedicated to DC’s visual arts. For more information visit www.eastcityart.com.

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