VOH Article - Ward 6 Family Day

From The Voice of the Hill website:

Wells' [Ward 6 Family Day] Rosedale Picnic Goes Off Despite Rain
June 24, 2009
By: Daniel Langhorne, Voice Correspondent

Ward 6 D.C. Council member Tommy Wells hosted the third annual Ward 6 Family Day at the Rosedale Recreation Center on Saturday to bring attention to Rosedale, an area that normally doesn't get much from the rest of the ward, according to the council member.

“This is a part of the ward that feels left out,” Wells said. “I like to bring the rest of the ward here to give it some attention.”

John Cotten [with the Rosedale Youth Institute], community liaison for the Friends of Rosedale, said the event lessens violence in the area — at least for the day.

“This area has had some violence over the years and this brings a sense of normalcy,” Wells agreed.

In that spirit, the outdoor picnic featured free food and a live rock band. Harris Teeter employees grilled burgers and hot dogs, FRESHFARM Markets gave away cherries, and the Hill restaurant Tortilla Coast handed out chips and salsa.

There was face painting and crafts for children. The Washington Nationals and Wizards also sent their mascots Screech and G-Wiz. Although the event’s organizers originally set up under the building’s overhang of the recreation center because of rain, by the afternoon attendees were jumping in the pool to escape the heat.

Resident Dana Wyckoff said the day was a good way to bring the community together.

“It brings people out in a positive setting with something fun to do,” she said.

The event also allows local groups to inform residents about their services, she said.

“It’s easy for people to become isolated,” she said, “People know about their neighborhood but don’t always know what is going on right outside their neighborhood.”

To help educate residents, representatives of the D.C. Department of Health and Washington Human Society attended the event to talk about animal issues like rabies, safety around dangerous dogs, treating animals humanely and pet sterilization.
Dietitians and medical staff from a local health center, Carl Vogel Center, offered to blood pressure and blood sugar levels.

“A lot of people wait [to go the doctor] until they crash,” said Barbara Craven, a dietician. “This is part of prevention to screen and educate.”

The Capitol Hill Restoration Society, Community Forklift, Rosedale Citizens Alliance and D.C. Office on Aging also hosted booths.

The above article was excerpted in its entirety from The Voice of the Hill website except for [text] that was added for minor clarifications.

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