Monday, September 14, 2009

It's Always Sunny in Adams Morgan: 31st Annual Festival a Blast

Eighty degrees and sunny. That was the forecast for Sunday's Adams Morgan Day, one of the largest neighborhood fests in DC. That forecast pretty much held, without a drop of rain all day. This fest tends to bring out all of Washington's types and you got a good change to see a bit of every kind of person who lives in this town. There was a little bit for everyone, and since the festival is free, you could have gotten away without spending a dime. But where's the fun in that!

If you've been here for a while, you know this is the last gasp of summer type festival. The air was smokey with grilled foods and loud with sounds of karaoke, live bands and children (mostly adult aged children mind you). Always faced with choices; go inside my favorite bar to drink and miss the great weather, or stay out enjoying the great weather and miss the drink. Go early and get food + free stuff, or come late to enjoy the cooler weather. For sports fans, miss NFL's opening weekend, or forget it for a few hours. Choices, choices.

A rare instance of having a car-free 18th Street. Not that it's easier to navigate. Generally the street was packed with slow walkers (me), socializers (me), eaters (me), dogs (not me), and pushed baby carriages (not me). Once again Madam's Organ decided not to participate. They even displayed a written, rather long winded, explanation, which I attempted to read, but trailed off after the second paragraph.

Other highlights included:

Some pols were on-site, of course. Mayor Adrian Fenty was there, fresh off of finishing the Nation's Triathlon yesterday morning. So was Ward One's Jim Graham. By the way, Fenty, aged 39, finished in the top 5% of triathlon participants with a time of 2 hours 21 minutes. It was an Olympic distance tri.

Dan's Cafe got a paint job! The outside at least.

A band of younger people (they looked about 14 and under) ROCKED the stage including closing with Ozzy Osbourne's Crazy Train.

Karaoke returned with some entertaining, if not talented singers. Always a can't miss at AM Day.

A friend explained to me, in detail, the differences between Portuguese, Brazilian and Angolan capoeira. Then I immediately watched some capoeira and couldn't identify which style was being presented. Sort of like failing an open book quiz.

Something about this year's set-up was different. The crowed flowed much better. And from my very loose estimate, there were a few thousand less people in attendance. Just according to the naked eye.

Same fried rice, lo mein and barbecued skewer street food offerings. Nothing special. Many restaurants open serving regular fare though.

Good chance to catch up with friends I hadn't seen in a while, but knew would be at the festival. Hope you enjoyed it as well and here's to number 32 next year.