CFP_o_wWMAArzjI

“Dear PoPville,

On Sunday (5/17) around 8:15 p.m. a man fell from the upper level of Meridian Hill Park, on 16th Street just south of Crescent Place. He landed on the concrete wall next to the sidewalk on 16th. According to witnesses, he was breathing when he landed and then stopped. I saw someone give him CPR until emergency services arrived and there were a number of shocked witnesses standing around – it was a grim scene. He was eventually taken away in an ambulance.

I can’t stop thinking about the victim and wondering whether he made it. :( There haven’t been any news reports as far as I can find. The drum circle was still in full swing up there at the time of the accident – did anyone else see it happen?”

On Sunday a reader tweeted us the photo above:

“16th St by Meridian Hill Park, 830pm. DCFD rescuing someone from terrace below big retaining wall”

IMG_7182

Hurrah! The Meridian Hill Park fountains are filled again. Though the pressure seems lower again like it was last year:

IMG_7184

Also the restoration of the 16th Street entrance/retaining wall has been completed:

IMG_7187

IMG_7189

But the Washington Meridian marker plaque is gone!! Let’s hope it doesn’t got the way of the Armillary Sphere.

IMG_7190

Here’s what it used to look like:

133899170_9d3f693689_z
Photo by flickr user David

“The inscription reads: THE STONE MARKING THE WASHINGTON MERIDIAN WAS FORMERLY LOCATED 52 FEET 9 INCHES WEST OF THIS TABLET WHICH WAS PRESENTED BY THE ARMY & NAVY CHAPTER DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION 1804 1923

L’Enfant planned Washington around a right triangle, having its 90° vertex at the Washington Monument, its eastern vertex at the Congress House, and its northern vertex at the President’s House, now called the White House. The west side of L’Enfant’s triangle forms a natural prime meridian passing through the President’s House. The following five features on this meridian are listed from south to north. In 1793, Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson surveyed and marked with a wooden post the southwest vertex of L’Enfant’s triangle, establishing the second Washington meridian, the one through the President’s House. The wooden post was replaced by the Jefferson Pier in 1804, while Jefferson was President of the United States. After removal and replacement several times, it was permanently replaced in 1889 by a two foot (0.7 m) square, two foot tall granite pier, now 119 m WNW of the center of the Washington Monument. Its longitude is 77°2’11.56″W (NAD 83). In 1890, the Meridian Stone was placed at the center of the Ellipse on the same meridian. It is an 18 inch (45 cm) square granite post set flush with the ground. In 1923, the Zero Milestone was placed on the same meridian on the north side of the Ellipse, intended to represent the zero mileage point for all United States roads (but never was). It is a granite pillar about 18 inches (45 cm) square and about 3.5 feet (1 m) tall. The most prominent feature on this Washington meridian (besides the White House) is 16th Street, which extends due north from the White House. The last feature on this meridian no longer exists. It was a small freestone obelisk placed in 1804 on top of a hill 1.5 miles (2.5 km) north of the President’s House, hence the name Meridian Hill. It was at the northern end of 16th Street, north of Florida Avenue, before 16th Street was extended northward soon after 1900, covering it up. Now adjoining the east side of 16th Street where the obelisk once stood is Meridian Hill Park.”

3457532170_2916fce1f4_z
Photo by PoPville flickr user John Reinhardt

Bummer for volleyball players. From NBC Washington:

“Now he and hundreds of other players will have to pay a $30, non-refundable fee online for two hours of play and reserve a court.”

From Change.org:

“The sand volleyball courts next to the Lincoln Memorial are Washington D.C.’s most valuable public volleyball resource. If you have been there, you know that individual players, teams, and friends of all ages and experience levels are welcome to play at the open-access courts FOR FREE, whenever they want. For the past 40 years, hundreds have played each week as soon as the weather is warm (and sometimes even when it’s not!). (more…)

8703711966_988eb9d21f_z
Photo by PoPville flickr user Eric P.

Great news via Frozen Tropics from the USDA:

“On April 14, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) U.S. National Arboretum (USNA) will once again be open to the public seven days a week, its original operating schedule. USNA continued a full research schedule but reduced the public schedule by three days a week in 2013 due to reduced funding, closing to the public Tuesday through Thursday. The Arboretum is operated by the Agricultural Research Service (ARS), USDA’s chief intramural scientific research agency.

“We are very pleased that the U.S. National Arboretum will return to its normal operating schedule on April 14,” said Chavonda Jacobs-Young, ARS Administrator. “In addition to the vital plant research conducted there, the Arboretum is also a source of relaxation and enjoyment for the public and visitors to Washington, D.C. We are thankful for the support of the Friends of the National Arboretum in helping us to restore the Arboretum’s normal operating schedule. It is a great example of well-functioning private/government partnership benefiting the public.”

Friends of the National Arboretum (FONA) is the principal private, nonprofit partner of USNA. FONA began raising funds following the 2013 schedule reduction to facilitate resuming USNA’s seven-day schedule. The funds raised by FONA will help pay for custodial, security, and public information services for the three days of operations over the next three years. (more…)

6321869261_2e371d5034_z
Photo by PoPville flickr user Phil

From the National Parks Service:

“The National Park Service is accepting comments from the public on a proposed plan to relocate geese from parts of the National Mall using environmentally safe and humane methods. The project would use border collies at the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, Washington Monument grounds and John F. Kennedy Hockey Fields to haze the Mall’s large and growing Canada goose population into moving to other parts of the park. Comments are being accepted online through April 22, 2015.

Large flocks of resident Canada geese around the National Mall leave excessive goose droppings, as much as 2-3 pounds per goose per day. More than a nuisance to pedestrians, the droppings damage the pumps and filters of the Reflecting Pool;degrade the park’s natural and cultural resources;and their feces have potential to create a public health hazard. With the assistance of the border collies, which are bred to herd sheep and have a natural instinct to round up flocks of geese, the geese will be encouraged to abandon the lawns and water in these areas and relocate elsewhere. No birds will be physically harmed during the hazing process.

How to Comment (more…)

A reader sends from Change.org:

“Cities need gardens! The community of ANC6a in Northeast Washington DC is growing with development and an exciting place to live. The Wylie Street Garden has created community among the longtime and new residents over 10 years. Two of three lots are privately owned and one is owned by H Street Community Development Corporation HSCDC. The community of this neighborhood, HSCDC and property owners recognize the how public gardens bring value to our lives. Time spent engaged in a green space after creates appreciation, communication, reflection and conversation. We intend to save and update the only remaining green space along the H Street corridor as the heart of H Street that represents our historical path of perseverance. Signing this petition will make a difference in every day of our city living in a great neighborhood.”

obama_petworth
801 Shepherd Street, NW

If you’re wondering about the heavy police presence around the Petworth – I’m hearing it’s for a Presidential visit.

Update from @karentravers:

“Pres Obama is doing an #MLKDay service project at Boys & Girls Club in DC’s #Petworth neighborhood. His 2nd trip to area in a yr @PoPville”

First visit to the area was:

“Powell elementary-remarks last March when he released his budget.”

IMG_3726
Georgia and Upshur St, NW

fall_in_ice_dc

Ed. Note: If you disagree with the OPs about the safety of skating on the canal please do so in a civil and respectful manner. Thank you.

“Dear PoPville,

A note of thanks to some good samaritans and a warning for those going skating on the C&O Canal:

On Sunday morning, two friends and I went skating on the canal, dropping in from the parking lot just next to Chain Bridge. We were heading down toward Georgetown and throwing a puck around, but by about 12:30 the ice in some places was beginning to look at bit wet so we turned around. Just as we went under the Chain Bridge in the middle of the channel heading north, the ice gave way and the three of us fell in.

Fortunately some very kind people passing by on the trail managed to fish us out. We are all fine — albeit a little scratched and bruised — now that we have dried off and warmed up. The only casualties seem to be two hockey sticks, three hockey gloves, a tube of Chapstick and three iPhones (though each of those is now snuggled in its own bag of rice — fingers crossed).

However, in the excitement and the cold, we never had a real opportunity to thank those people who helped us. So to the two men who pulled us out, and probably got very wet and cold in the process, a huge thank you. The same to everyone else who stopped and offered warm clothing — we really appreciate all the kindness that people showed to us today.

Even after all of this, we would all skate on the canal again. Don’t take this incident as a reason not to. It’s is a beautiful way to spend cold winter morning. But be careful of the ice underneath the bridge, which apparently gets soft easily because of the runoff from the roadway above. Stick to the river side of the canal where at least if the ice does break, it’s only knee deep.

And if anyone happens to pick up two hockey sticks and three hockey gloves from the canal, please let us know. We admittedly wouldn’t mind getting them back!

Thanks again,

Jenny, Mai and Rachel
(The C&O canal swim team)

P.S. Our apologies to the Park Service for littering. It certainly wasn’t our intention.”

Ed. Note: Georgetown Metropolitan has previously posted that it is legal to skate on the canal – from C & O Canal National Historic Park:

It’s that time of year and weather when Park visitors may go ice skating.

The ice skating issue is addressed in the Park’s rules (reprinted in the C&O Canal NHP Volunteer Manual):

“Ice skating is permitted at your own risk park-wide, except where prohibited by signage.”

There are signs at Widewater, where the water is so deep it never freezes enough to be safe.

Our role is to advise visitors of unsafe conditions when we become aware of them.  Do so nicely.  Elsewhere, the canal is usually safe because it is so shallow.  People may get wet feet and be cold, but this is rarely a life-threatening emergency.  If you are not sure, telephone dispatch and talk to them about it.

If person goes through the ice at Widewater or other deep water area, call 911.  No heroics; without the right gear, you will just be another casualty.   If an animal goes through the ice, no humans should be put at risk to save it, but you could call dispatch and ask what they recommend.