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Neat Neighborhood Find: First Bloom of Bloom

by Prince Of Petworth June 30, 2008 at 11:00 am 10 Comments


It’s official – 11th Street is the coolest street in the city. Forget about Columbia Heights Coffee, Wonderland, Red Rocks and the soon to be Meridian Pint – First Bloom of Bloom – the new “spontaneous, underground, music, art and inspiration in the heart of Columbia Heights” is ridiculously awesome! I was sitting with a friend at Red Rocks drinking a couple of beers and relaxing after the Parade and a guy named Jon Chambers comes over to us to talk about his new spot. (And when I came home I had quite a few emails from folks also telling me about this new space.) Well, it is exactly like it sounds – art and music and lots of good vibes. I should say that this awesome spot is located at 3222 11th St, NW right between Wonderland and El Rinconcito. It is in one of those buildings that we’ve been wondering what will become of it. And I don’t think it would be possible for anything cooler than this to arrive.

I was given a tour during the day and got to see much of the cool art located on two levels. I then returned around 11:30 that evening to listen to some phenomenal music. The event was free although you could give a $5 donation but it wasn’t mandatory. I was a little hesitant when I heard a lot of talk about love and peace. The New Yorker in me came out and I thought I may have entered some sort of cult headquarters. But I couldn’t have been further off base. These folks are simply socially conscious people who are trying to bring the community together. The hope seems to be that all sorts of folks, white, black, latino, young, old, etc, will use this space as a community center. Pictured above is Jason Jasper who had an incredible voice and sang acapella. You can also see to the right of the photo that there was an artist painting a piece throughout the evening inspired by the music being played. Sat. night was the last night of a three night stand but I’ll be sure to post info for upcoming shows/events as they become available. I realized it was a super cool evening when famed WJLA anchor, Maureen Bunyan, arrived (see photo below). It seems like this space is really going to evolve into something great. Lots more photos after the jump.



Jon Chambers





  • Hoodrat

    Awesome. Is this place going to have regular hours or events, or is it only open for special events?

  • bogfrog

    Wow! So… ditto to the above question!

  • New2CH

    I wrote a long comment on this but it did not seem to post …

  • Prince Of Petworth

    Damn, I hate when it does that. If you want to email it to me I can post it. I’m not sure why it does that sometimes. I apologize.

  • New2CH

    alas I don’t have it over email. but the short story was that it sounded from talking to the guy in charge (or one of them, he said they had a team) Jasper, who was very cool, that this would open for real at some point in September (which probably means later in the fall, of coruse). They still have a lot of structural repairs to do as the space was in really poor shape when they purchased it.

    I hope they keep the interior fairly raw, as it had a very cool vibe to it, but it would be nice if they could improve the exterior facade and front “yard” a little bit. I imagine once open it will be open for more than just special events, because I am not sure otherwise how they will be able to recoup their investment. Indeed I kind of wonder that in any event, not really sure how they intend to make money (maybe renting out the space to musicians? just not sure this area is yet ready to support a full-time art gallery) but I am VERY happy it is here, seems like an awesome addition to the area, and I really hope they are successful. Looking forward to seeing the final incarnation in the fall.

  • 7s

    It is a great place and it was a great event… BLOOM HAS TAKEN ROOT… I was happy to be apart of it all…



  • E-girl

    I was there Fri. night…guess I just missed you PoP.

    Off to Shane’s site…I think you were sitting on the floor, right? I was sitting on the “bench” all night… couldn’t help but notice you were an obvious Sandbloom fan.

  • Mad love from Cali to DC. Glad to be a part of such a great event embracing such a great community. Mad love to all who attended and all who supported. Mad love to all who will attend in the near future. Educate with peace, hope, and love.


  • Kristen C.

    Great music, fantastic art and a tremendously positive energy. A really special place. Look forward to future events.

  • Rick

    Website is down; any news on this place? I’d love to check it out but don’t know when events are occuring.


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