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Neighbors Having Serious Problems With Mood Lounge in Shaw

by Prince Of Petworth July 20, 2011 at 10:22 pm 111 Comments

A reader shares a letter and some follow up re: Mood Lounge located at 1318 9th St, NW (in the former Be-Bar space):

Councilmember Evans,

Does the MOOD Lounge have permission to operate on Sunday through Thursday nights? Because their website indicates they are only open on Friday and Saturday nights, and these are the only two nights of the week we as neighbors are subjected to torture on a regular basis…. I know this is not standard for them (as they have not operated on these nights in the past), but tonight is a Thursday night (a work-week night, for those of us in the surrounding neighborhood…) and the music is blasting, the patrons are lined up out front (and I took pictures) and they are operating as any other nightclub that is not in a residential neighborhood.

I’m really beginning to lose my patience with this operation and with the complete inaction by local government officials to address this problem…. I know that in other neighborhoods I have lived in that the City Councilmember wouldn’t put up with this.

Councilmember Evans – HOW WILL YOU FIX THIS??? As a citizen in your ward, I rely on you to handle issues like this in this neighborhood that affect the quality of life for your citizens. PLEASE RESOLVE THIS ISSUE – either by closing this nightclub in a residential neighborhood permanently or by forcing them to abide by the Voluntary Agreement that they accepted when they obtained the rights to this club (which, for the record, as a new operator, should have been renegotiated with the local residents).

Furthermore, I want to encourage you, as a sleepless resident, to introduce legislation (which if you don’t have time to write, I am happy to write on your behalf since I cannot sleep and have nothing better to do with my time…) that invalidates any prior ABRA license and VA for any new owner or lessee of a property which previously held one in the District. Furthermore, I am happy to introduce legislation that bars ABRA from granting CT or CN licenses within 300 feet of a residence, as such licenses are incompatible by definition with a neighboring residential community. I am confident I can validate this concern through a petition of residents in your ward.

Time after time, future owners have presented issues in every Ward that were not anticipated (and therefore legislated against or fought in a prior VA) with prior owners of said license. You may be sleeping soundly when this email is sent, but I am not. And that is a problem. As my City Councilmember, I am asking you why I cannot get a resolution to an ongoing problem with noise complaints, drug sales, prostitution, and loitering from a nuisance bar that is 75 feet away from my home. An answer to myself and all CC’d on this email would be appreciated. If the shortcoming is in the law, I would appreciate a civics lesson in how as a citizen I can improve the relevant laws to increase the quality of life in my own neighborhood. If the shortcomings are in the enforcement of the existing laws, I would appreciate an answer about why the Councilmember we voted to keep in this position cannot resolve a simple ABRA issue relating to REPEATED BLATANT VIOLATIONS OF THE LAW.

Why is it every single time I overstay my meter by 60 seconds I get a ticket from the parking authority (and have to pay the fine or get booted) and yet this business repeatedly throws up the middle finger at city hall and gets away with it???? Double Standard???

Responses after the jump.

CM Evans’ response:

Dear All,

Let me begin by saying that I agree this is an unacceptable situation that has been going on for too long and I look forward to working with the relevant agencies to get this matter resolved as soon as possible.

As for your suggestion about legislation, enacting legislation takes time. It would need to be discussed, as it would impact the entire city. It may seem like a good idea in light of what is going on with Mood Lounge, but 99% of ABRA licensees are good, lawful businesses who live within their VA and city regulations and to put in blanket legislation that would affect the entire city has repercussions that at least need to be looked at before laws are enacted. I met with the neighbors at a BANCA meeting in the neighborhood only two weeks ago, and brought Fred Moosally from ABRA along to talk specifically about Mood Lounge and what can be done LEGALLY to get it closed. I will continue to stay on top of this, and do whatever we can, legally, to see that this business operates within the law, or is closed.

With that, I ask Fred Moosally: why has this license, which was issued for a bar, located in a neighborhood, been permitted to turn into a nightclub? They do not have the license to operate as a nightclub, which clearly they are—that is evident to anyone, and therefore, they should be closed immediately.


Mr. Moosally’s response:

Councilmember Evans,

ABRA is committed to working on this issue as well. ABRA investigators will be monitoring the establishment tonight and will be meeting with some residents in an effort to help address these issues. ABRA will continue to check the establishment for possible violations; however, any enforcement action taken by ABRA must be taken within the confines of the law.

Fred P. Moosally

Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration

The OP tells me:

“It’s at 40 emails now – and no, things have gotten worse. As of this last weekend, they’re open Sunday nights (and well into Monday mornings) as well. Worse, ABRA sent inspectors out at 8pm, even though we clearly told them problems don’t start until 10 or 11.

I’ve told Councilmember Jack Evans that it’s time to rewrite liquor laws to clarify that a CT license cannot be used as a de facto nightclub in a residential neighborhood. So far, no response….”

  • Anonymous

    It’s a city. Let them make noise. If you want quietness go to the suburbs.

    • SF

      Super helpful, dude. Thanks for taking the time to contribute.

    • Agitated


    • Anonymous

      why don’t you go back to the ‘burbs where you came from and stop pretending this city is nothing but your play toy. People have lived here in quiet neighborhoods long before you were here and will continue to long after you hike it back out to have kids

      • Johnson

        Oops, that was supposed to be a reply to Anonymous @ 10:44 PM.

      • Anon2

        +100. Most if not all of the crappy behavior I see in AdMo, along U Street, in Logan is related to a vehicle with MD or VA license plates.

      • anon

        I don’t want to sound bad, but this city is my play toy. I live in the burb’s and work and play in the city. I kind of like the arrangement.

    • wax

      not quite.

  • Sherman

    I live a few blocks away. I think it is a bit of a misnomer to call this a residential district. Mood is on 9th St. which is (well was and hopefully will be again in the future) a business district. I welcome the street traffic and the businesses to the neighborhood.

    • styglan1

      +1 (but with recognition of the hardship the OP must face, even if I am going to ignore it).

    • C

      It is a business district, but there is a sizable amount of housing within a few hundred feet of the building.

      As for the neighbors who live directly next door, well, Mood was a different bar when they bought their condos. I know that BeBar and EFN at least tried to work with the neighbors to minimize noise issues. Of course they were still bars with loud music, but they made an effort. It seems like Mood has absolutely no interest in following the rules or being a member of the neighborhood.

  • JMC

    I’m sure this is extremely frustrating but to the councilmember’s point this needs to be handled in due process and by the book. You as a citizen cannot introduce legislation and you won’t curry much favor by being irate and telling people how you’ll do their jobs for them.

  • anan

    Are you for real dude? 9th street? The club was open on a Thursday you say?! Oh the humanity. We aren’t in salt lake anymore

  • Anonymous

    Did you all complain about this when it was white and gay ie: EFN Lounge/BeBar?

    • Anonymous

      Were they equally outraged when a gay man was killed outside of BeBar and the perpetrator was given 180 days?


      • Q-Street

        The same guy recently assaulted his girlfriend in broad daylight and got a whopping 100 days.

        Score another one for the shitbags.

    • ET

      If it was operating within the bonds of what it was allowed by the licensing and any neighborhood agreements that may have been in place why would they have? If all of the above is correct it seems like Mood it blatantly violating what it is allowed to do and is getting away with it and the situation is getting out of control.

      Why should they be allowed to do this, why not apply to be a nightclub? I will tell you why not – they wouldn’t be given permission so this is their way of getting around that.

    • Anonymous

      don’t ever underestimate the power of people to complain about anyone of any race.
      also, piss off, troll.

    • ShawGuy (OP)

      We didn’t complain when it was EFN or BeBar because both of those establishments were run responsibly and the management was quick to address neighborhood concerns. Also, they had a police presence that MOOD refuses to pay for, so prostitution, vomiting, urination, drug dealing, and illegal parking were dealt with on the spot.

    • C

      1) Yes, EFN frequently got complaints from neighbors, often about noise and the trash that was piled up in the alley.

      2) I wouldn’t call EFN a white bar. They had numerous regular events that catered to a black audience. During happy hour and on an average night, the crowd was pretty mixed between black and white patrons.

      3) I LOVE when anonymous posters yell “racism” in the comments of just about every post. It makes for such productive conversation.

  • Agitated

    Anon, Sherman, JMC, anan – All have it right.

  • Dante

    Consider that some other jackass posted today that we should atop worrying and learn to accept murders and pipe beatdowns to the face, I don’t think loud nightclubs are worth our time.


  • Agitated

    “problem with noise complaints, drug sales, prostitution, and loitering from a nuisance bar that is 75 feet away from my home.”
    More research into the “neighborhood” (business district) before “purchasing” or “renting” there sees like a viable solution. Oh. Wait. Too late. Guess in hindsight. Hmmm…

    • elcal

      Yeah, cos it’s not like most of the residents in this alley/square block bought their houses YEARS before Mood Lounge came in. Oh. Wait. They did.

      Residents like the OP accept the legality of a bar license, if it is a nuisance of a business, but running a nightclub every evening is not what the ANC meetings prior to MOOD’s operation likely covered.

    • ShawGuy (OP)

      @Agitated – MOOD Lounge opened in January. And took over a license that had belonged to a business that was responsive to concerns without even meeting with community residents, the ANC, or anyone else and produced a completely different nightclub concept in the space. Existing legislation made it impossible for us to even interact in the beginning of this process, because MOOD was not required to meet with anyone. That loophole in the system is the primary problem in this case.

  • Jason

    There’s nothing wrong with a CT license on it’s own per se. It’s the entertainment endorsement paired with the CT license that can easily morph into a nightclub.

  • Anonymous

    A quick search appears to show this isn’t the first time Mood has run afoul of their voluntary agreement.

    Research into this neighborhood would show this club shouldn’t be operating as it is.


  • Sherlock Homes

    Sleepless in Shaw,

    My house and I had the same issue with “The Space” which was an illegal night club on N St. right around the corner and whose music came from right on the other side of the wall. Nothing is more frustrating that people who think that because it is a city you should just shut up and deal with it. These people wouldn’t be signing that tune if they knew what its like to not be able to sleep and to literally fear going home at night.

    Now “The Space” was an illegal operation and I don’t know Mood Lounge’s status, but here were the steps we took.

    1) Get a good look at their voluntary agreement and document violations.

    2) If they are outside their allowed hours, call DCRA and ABRA. Get the violations in writing.

    3) Talk to your neighbors and get them on board. I am sure they feel the same way.

    4) Go to the ANC and you should be able to get on their agenda and bring it up. If they are in violation of their voluntary agreement they can take actions with the city and also recommend that Mood NOT receive its liquor license renewal.

    “The Space” was illegal, unaccountable and dangerous and it still took over year to shut it down, but when you find your success it will be worth it.

    Best of luck and if there is anything I can do to help we can get in touch.

    • Kalorini

      Really helpful advice for the OP! Too bad he/she will have to sift through the 100+ crap comments about moving back to the suburbs. I agree with you–if this was happening to them, they wouldn’t be so harsh.

      • Shaw Me the Money


      • SSRS

        Agreed. City living does not mean you shouldn’t be able to sleep at night on a weeknight (it’s obvioulsy another story on weekends…) I’d love to see the snarky commenters on here put up with what the OP is going through for a day or two.

        • Veronika

          you’re right, however, living near 9th street is very close to the center of urban activity… it’s not like the club is in Shepherd Park… it’s right near the convention center!

      • textdoc

        Agreed. All of this either/or stuff–“deal with it the way it is or move to the suburbs”–is not helpful.

    • steve

      roofdeck at the space was awesome. thanks a lot for shutting it down

      • El Gringo


        Had a killer 30th birthday party there. Had no idea about the various legal issues one way or another….was still bummed it got shut down…it was definitely NOT a nightclub.

      • Veronika

        it was a fun spot

        • Chris R

          +1 the Space was a good place and brought much needed eyes on the street to Shaw.

          FYI if you are buying a place in the city you MUST look at closely at your neighborhood and if there is commercial space nearby you have to assume at some point there may be a restaurant that may want to stay open late and GASP may be loud. I’m not saying you have to move back to the suburbs, but if you are making the biggest investment of your life you may want to consider a quieter street. There are lots of streets in this city that are quieter than others. Do your real estate research and stop trying to shut down businesses that bring needed vitality to the city just because they keep you up. Location, Location, Location is the #1 rule of real estate and just because you disregarded it don’t come whining to us and the DC government.

          • scarecrows NOW

            well put. you can find the zoning map on dc.gov through the citizens atlas. it’s really easy to use.

          • Sherlock Homes

            I agree that it is smart to look at where you are buying, but there are systems set in place so that when a restaurant opens up, they have to do their part for the community and in return a community can support the restaurant.

            When a restaurant agrees to stay within certain parameters and then goes wildly outside those parameters why should the neighborhood have to give up their comfort.

      • SkyDeck

        +1 as well.

        I miss that place almost every weekend. Had no idea it was illegal, but it was awesome. How was it illegal if you don’t mind me asking. I had beers with the owner a couple times and he never mentioned neighbor issues. More like, ex-wife issues…

        • Sherlock Homes

          @ SkyDeck When “The Space” started to get renovated we had a really good relationship with the owners Karen and Mitch. They were very friendly and talked to us about potential concerns we would have with them opening a “Low Key Concierge Club”. Essentially they billed it as a private club there companies could hold events after work or weary travelers could relax and have a few drinks. Any music or noise was not to be heard through our walls and events would wrap up early evening on weekdays and 2 on Friday and Saturday.

          Noise and Trash were our biggest concerns and we thought we had a good voluntary agreement in place. We thought we came to an understanding.

          No idea what happened to Karen, but once she disappeared the Space became a loud, noisy night club almost every night. The bass was soo loud things fell of my shelves. Trash was left outside our door (rats also).

          We tried to talk to Mitch, but his attitude quickly turned to F U.

          A quite concierge lounge and a nearly every night club with DJ are two very different things.

          I liked the roof deck when it closed @ 10pm ish, but right on the other side were bedrooms and when it stayed open until 4am we had enough.

          Long story short, we recognized that it was an urban area and we tried working with a business on compromise and they took advantage of us and in the end were shut down.

      • Sherlock Homes

        No problem.

    • ShawGuy (OP)

      @Sherlock Homes: thank you for actually contributing to constructive dialogue about this issue. +1!!

  • Snarky

    Have you tried offering to buy an SUV for the folks in City Hall? That works pretty well with this administration.

  • Petworthy

    I’m really tired of “it’s a city – get used to it”. Believe it or not, when these blocks of houses were designed in the late 19th century, it wasn’t anticipated to have loud booming bass coming from next store at all hours. Nor was it accepted practice to stay until 3am on a Thursday (yes kids, that used to be considered a week night) making noise outside peoples windows. In fact, such practice wasn’t really an accepted part of “city living” until about 15 years ago. So my advice is to take your noisy, party-loving selves back to the suburbs (white or black) and leave the city for adults. It’s Washington DC, not a big extension of your dorm room from last year.

    • JDS


      • me

        What are you, twelve? Petworthy has a good and rational post. Grow up, get a job, and then try to function on no sleep for nights on end. (Can you tell I didn’t get any sleep last night either?? Not from this situation, just by coincidence.)

    • Madison

      +1 “It’s Washington, DC, not a big extension of your dorm room from last year.” Exactly!

      • Elle

        This is my biggest problem with DC — it feels like I moved to frat row waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too often.

      • + 10 (to the 200th power). DC, sadly, is for the most part just a high school/college extension (hence our status as a second-tier city).

        • Anonymous

          Right, because I’ve never heard of anyone a few years out of school being out drinking until 3am on a Thursday in NYC, Chicago, LA, or SF. And don’t even get me started on how everybody under 30 is home in bed reading the Economist by 10:15 on Thursday night in Tokyo, London, Rio, Paris, Berlin, Montreal, Shanghai, and Jo-burg.

          This particular establishment may be out of line, but people who want a vibrant city until 9pm and then dead quiet need to spend some time in Providence or Des Moines and find out what it’s like to live in a place where they roll up the sidewalks after everybody goes home from work.

          • Anonymous

            Go to Old Town Alexandria if you want a charming place that’s dead after 9pm (I made the mistake of moving there when I came to the area right after college).

          • Lexie

            Or just Friendship Heights. Even the local restaurants aren’t open past 10 or 11 on a Friday/Saturday night. OP, wanna trade living spaces?

          • indc

            Who said anything about wanting dead silence after 9pm? I certainly didn’t. I find more civility in NYC or SF in the late party hours than I do in Adams Morgan on a typical weekend. DC, for some reason, attracts a “special” breed of young adults that act considerably different than their brethren in the above mentioned cities – and, until they can act like they haven’t just been let out of a cage then the city will continue to earn it’s second-tier image.

    • wax

      i was with you till you pulled out the “move back to the suburbs” crap.

    • Shaw Me the Money

      Petworthy: What a selfish, narrow-minded little thoughts you (barely) have. It is possible for everyone in a neighborhood to make mutual adjustments to accommodate every reasonable need in a level-headed, practical fashion. Your (and others’) approach is startling, tellingly infantile. Same goes to all of you who want pin-drop silence (on 9th street, for crying out loud) so that your only worry will be the pea under your mattress. Club owners, the music really doesn’t have to be THAT loud. There are myriad ways to work towards accommodation, but it’s easier to bitch and moan than make an effort. People who dislike the hours and noise, write to the club owners, the DCRA, the mayor’s office and propose solutions. Check out existing law to find out where your viewpoint falls legally. Call, call, call, (and call some more) your representatives until you get someone to follow up. Write to blogs like this one, and to newspapers. Take action. Clubs, if you feel you’re within your rights to blare noise until 3am on a weeknight, then be ready to defend yourselves.

    • Marie

      but who will date rape women????

    • Veronika

      that’s crap. city life involves noise. you think DC is bad, take it up to NYC when the roads are jackhammered at 3am. some of those late 19th centruy houses also weren’t expecting electricity (mine has gas knobs), so should we shut all the lights after 9pm too? “So my advice is to take your noisy, party-loving selves back to the suburbs (white or black) and leave the city for adults” is the most RIDICULOUS advice I’ve ever read. It’s usually the other way around. Suburbs for the adults with kids who need a good nights sleep on Thursdays and cities for young kids with no money who can work on 4 hours sleep. Not defending the club for breaking rules, but your comment is laughable

      • ceeps

        Yeah, DC should be just like NYC!


    • ADC

      It didn’t become okay to be loud in cities until 1996? Or just DC?

  • Madison

    Besides contacting ABRA and DCRA, wouldn’t you be able to contact the police for noise violations? I have a crazy 60 year old law professor next door, who loves to throw raucous and extravagant parties ONLY on Wednesday nights. We contact the police when it happens. DC now has a noise ordinance (which may or may not apply to something like this)for obnoxious noises after 10 pm (passed the City Council back in February). If this club is violating its contract/license agreement with the city, why couldn’t the police be a resource here?

  • JDS

    Not quite. Petworthy’s rationality ends when he states the fact that the rowhouses were built in the 19th century (ie, the second sentence). After that, his post reads “waaah, people who are different than me are annoying.”

    • JDS

      ugh reply fail – in response to “me”

  • RnR

    There’s no indication the OP was from the suburbs! For all we know, she/he has live in the neighborhoood her/his whole life. Even people who are used to living in “the city” can get annoyed and angry when a local business starts breaking the rules and disturbing people. Don’t make this into a racial white/black/suburbs/urban thing because it really isn’t.

    • styglan1

      Except the “rules” are a VA which are arbitrary neighborhood guidelines determined by a board of NIMBY neighbors. Arguably that is not the point of all of this but Mood and other establishments should have to meet the letter of the law as written for all not as custom fitted to constrain them alone.

      • Anonymous

        even outside of the VA, there are laws concerning sound levels.

      • anon

        If Mood agreed to the voluntary agreement, than they should abide by it.

        I thought that usually bars/clubs agreed to voluntary agreements because they wouldn’t be able to get an alcohol license otherwise. No?

    • ShawGuy (OP)

      @RnR – You’re right – I’ve been in DC since I was a teenager. I love urban living, and have always lived in the middle of the city. And I don’t think anyone would consider prostitutes soliciting customers in front a *their* home, drug dealers getting into brawls in front of *their* home, finding used condoms every day in front of *their* home, or dealing with threats of violence to be a “normal” part of urban living. If these behaviors were acceptable within the bounds of cities, then why does every city in America have laws against them?

  • Anonymous

    First e-mail, or fortieth…who talks like that?

    • Anonymous

      an upset person

  • DC

    “Did you all complain about this when it was white and gay ie: EFN Lounge/BeBar?”

    For some reason, I think not.

  • joker

    buy your own “mosquito”, hang it on the front of your house pointed in the direction of the club.

    While they are typically calibrated for a younger crowd (mid to late teens), we learned in Chinatown that plenty of twenty something folk could hear it too.

    • ceeps

      This is genius! Where do I get one?

  • tj

    That area of 9th St. is not “a residential neighborhood”

    • scarecrows NOW


  • There is obviously middle ground to be found here.

    There is credence in the view that city living comes with its share of noise – the OP deserves a livable situation. Maybe this is unfair, but I definitely have a hunch that the guy is sort of insufferable and the days of sleepless nights is a wee bit exaggerated.

    And yes, I hope that Mood checks itself. It is also true that this neighborhood isn’t as residential as it is sworn to be in the OP.

    But the demand to write and enact legislation suspending liquor licenses when establishments change ownership? Shut up, guy. As if there aren’t enough regulations hampering small businesses in DC. Buy some ear plugs. Use your drive to write to keep a log of violations instead – that way, you might not come off as Whiny McIrritating in the next 40 e-mails.

  • Anonymous

    I live a couple doors down and have a great view of the velvet ropes, red carpet and valet stand on big nights (which are indeed often Thursdays)… definitely not a bar.

    But you know what my one real complaint is? The 8-12 person fights that happen out front. I’ve even seen two women get hit. The bouncers don’t do a THING and for whatever reason everyone involved seems to know not to call the police. This is not about city vs suburb or residential vs. business district tolerances – this is about safety.

    • elcal

      They’re not just out front, they continue down the VERY residential side streets between 11/9. Add to that gaggles of drunks arguing over who is more sober to drive back to PG and then proceeding to sideswipe every car on the street they parked on.

      • anon

        Ha that was me and my boys one time. We even had a point system for every car we sideswiped! Man I was too shitfaced to drive!

        • Laughing

          Ha, C- trolling.

  • zcf

    The block Mood is at is NOT a residential neighborhood. There’s a Giant across the street, a gas station, a bunch of galleries, and some restaurants.

    I’ve been a few times while it was EFN, and even when it was completely full, it didn’t feel like a nightclub.

    Now, I don’t know the OP’s situation, but I think he or she is being a wee ridiculous. Now, you don’t need to move to the ‘burbs to get complete peace and quiet, but it probably was a bad idea to move into a neighborhood with mixed zoning.

  • Kev29

    A nice quiet residential neighborhood… 250 feet from a 2,300,000-square-foot convention center.

    • elcal

      Ever been BEHIND that block or on 10th? Pretty fucking residential.

      • Veronika

        if you are anywhere near that convention center you can pretend you’re in a “residential” area… that’s cool. most of DC is “residential” however when you live THAT close to downtown, it’s not going to get quieter, just louder… if you’re looking for quiet, keep north on 16th….

        • ceeps

          I live across the street from the Convention Center near Mood. The ONLY time I’ve been woken up at night was because of patrons coming out of Mood.

          Just sayin…

  • The Real Jason

    I’m sure its no mere coincidence that the club in question has majority black patrons. I’m certain local authorities will spring into action swiftly. Yet unsanctioned “Punk Rock” shows staged in rickety row houses blare for hours on end on weekdays. Tragic.

    • pop-up owner

      I have not heard of these unsanctioned punk rock shows. Can you provide a citation to a discussion to these seemingly elusive events?

      • The Real Jason

        I’m not going to throw those kids under the bus. I just wanted to illuminate the fact that class/racial tension is still a very big issue in this city.

    • anon

      Somehow I doubt the neighbors of these shows are particularly thrilled about them.

  • Jeez Really?

    I live a few hundred feet from this establishment and I can assure all that most of these comments are very exagerated. I have returned home very late many evenings and walked around Mood and have never witnessed anything like the OP is reporting. Their music is loud like any bar or club but it’s indoors. It is not audible anywhere other than directly in front of their establishment when the doors are opened. Nobody in the alley or on N or O Street can hear it. What people do hear is patrons leaving to get in their cars. Mood is on 9th Street which is a commercial street. There are 4 hotels within two blocks being constructed totalling over 1600 rooms. People out on the streets will increase dramatically so I would suggest that we start getting used to it. The real issue with Mood and I hate to say this is the fact that it’s young African-Americans who are the patrons. The OP and several neighbors just don’t want them in their hood. Mood is doing nothing illegal. I would suggest that the complainers work with the police to address patrons leaving intoxicated and any distrubances from them. Demanding that Mood be closed or that no bar be allowed to open within 75 feet of a reisdence is completely ridiculous. So please, stop exagerating and telling lies. This is a city and we all have a right to live in it and enjoy it. People can be noisy…but targeting them because they are out enjoying their evening could be handled better without the hate and judgements.

    • anon


    • Richko

      “could be handled better without the hate and judgements.” just a few sentences after “The OP and several neighbors just don’t want them in their hood.” which is not judgmental at all, is it?!!

    • ShawGuy (OP)

      I’m glad that you live far enough away from this torture to not endure it every night. Nobody should have to….

      9th Street in and of itself is a vibrant commercial district. One in which the neighborhood recognizes, respects (and welcomes restaurants, bars, pubs, etc) in close proximity to the homes nearby. However, “nightclubs” have a different definition in DC and ABRA law because they are by definition incompatible with a surrounding residential community.

      I would WELCOME a neighborhood bar like BeBar or EFN in these empty storefronts. But a NIGHTCLUB? That’s not what any of us signed up for when we bought / leased homes here.

      I’ll judge how “out-of-touch” I am with “the reality of city life” by how many commenters say they’d be fine with finding a used condom on the hood of their car (twice!! in one week!!), how many times they’ve been woken up by boisterous sex, how many times they’ve called the police regarding drug-dealer brawls over “territory” (and I assure you, if this is a problem in front of your home, the language identifies it as such) in front of their homes, and how many bloody prostitutes they’ve found curled up on their front steps after having been beaten by their “pimps”…. Are you willing to pay my water bill to hose blood and semen (and sometimes both in the same night) off my car, my home, and my stoop? If not, keep your self-righteous comments TO YOURSELF!!!

      *If you accept these circumstances as a “fact of urban living”, I’m glad I don’t have to deal with you when I walk my dog, host a block party, or talk with my neighbors on the corner about the condom or the bloody needle under my feet at the time…*

      A couple people have said I’ve “over-reacted” or even “exaggerated” my claims about the MOOD Lounge. Please note that out of 100+ comments, you’re in the minority in this comment pool, BUT THAT YOU’RE INVITED, ANY TIME, to experience this illegal nightclub from in front of my home (behind this illegal club). AND you live at least a block and a half away….

      I’d like to invite every single one of you to spend a Saturday night after midnight sitting on my stoop. Better yet, hiding out in my backyard and only coming through my front gate when you hear the sounds of a man climaxing at 3:30am…. or the brawl of a drug deal gone bad at 2:15…. or the sounds of a young woman pissed that her car got towed at midnight (which I endured just this week) and tell me that this is “just part of living in a city”…. And then look me in the eye and tell me with a straight face, with your mother on speakerphone, that that’s just what you get for not living in Old Town or Bethesda…. I’ve lived in downtown DC *my whole adult life*….

      And I’d like to ask which of you has a Masters or a Ph.D in Urban Planning. Since you’re all such experts and all… Believe it or not, this ISN’T about race. My neighbors and I would mount the SAME campaign against straight white people, Gay Asians, Black hermaphrodites, or Alien Blue Smurfs.

      I don’t care who you cater to if you’re a friendly neighborhood bar, but when I see you walk out of a club and get in your (illegally parked) car and round the corner to pick up teenage hookers, “tag” my house, my fence, or my stoop and give me an hour or more of work this weekend with a Brillo Pad to scrub your gang symbol off my private property, between runs to Old City Green to replace urine-killed plants and find Ph-Neutral fertilizers you’ve lost my vote of sympathy…

      So before you get up on your high fucking horse and say this isn’t a “residential” neighborhood enough to meet your I-think-in-suburban-standards-but-still-live-in-the-city bullshit, come down here, on a Saturday night – you’re all invited. Have a drink, on the residents of Naylor Court. Lay down for a nap in my bed. I’ll wash the sheets after you take me up on it. Not that I’ll get any sleep before 3am anyway. And take a walk while I’m washing those sheets between 9th and 11th Streets and see how “commercial” those blocks seem to you…. I ask you, COUNT THE BUSINESSES on those blocks, from 9th to 11th, N to P… I’ll give you $1,000 for each one in that area open past midnight that’s disturbing the neighbors outside of the MOOD Lounge…

      I WELCOME a restaurant, or a neighborhood bar (think CHEER’S, for those of you who are old enough…), or other business to the long-neglected 9th Street Corridor. And I also WELCOME commentary from each and every one of you who is willing to pick up the used condom that was on a young man’s PENIS that I have been stepping over every time I walked into or out of out of my front door since last weekend. Because it’s been five days and nights… AND NOT ONE OF YOU HAS STEPPED UP TO REMOVE THE **USED** CONDOM FROM MY STREET….

      If you’re not willing to come here, to my house, and pick up this used condom with your bare hands (It’s still full of jizz, four days later…. And there’s six more in the alley tonight), then STFU with your nasty commentary about “living in a city and dealing with it” or “let them make noise”… If used condoms full of young men’s jizz is your idea of “ideal urban living”, please provide your full mailing address on this forum, along with the dates your parents / future in-laws / grandparents will be in town next… We have a seemingly inexhaustible supply of used men’s prophylactics… I’m happy to get some surgical gloves and a USPS Priority Mail Account and send you some if you have a shortfall up in your Ivory Tower…. Publish your address on this forum and I’ll gladly send you, via USPS, what this illegal nightclub has brought to our neighborhood. If it’s “just part of urban living”, you won’t mind getting these fruitful reminders of your urban lifestyle in your mailbox…. Just let me know where to mail them – there’s plenty to go around….

      Even if you’re just a few blocks away and think I’m “exaggerating”… I’ve got surgical gloves and I’m sure you’ve got a mail slot… let’s see you Man-Up and post your mailing address… Oh wait, you don’t want used condoms full of semen at your front door?? Well neither do I… SO STFU!!!

      • Chris R

        Move then…
        to a quieter neighborhood in the city there are tons of them

  • rabble

    i like how the OP paints freaking 9th st NW downtown as some sort of cul-de-sac with kid’s playing soccer in the street.

  • Amy

    this is ridiculous. this bar is located in an entirely commercial area – it comes with the territory. i do not think the OP should relocate to the suburbs, but he or she should consider moving to one of the many quiet neighborhoods in dc (think woodley park, cleveland park, foggy bottom, etc.) yes, these areas are lame. but maybe the OP will find some peace and quiet within the district.

  • Amber

    This is why we can’t have nice things.

    Asshats like this would rather all our building be boarded up.

    • Anonymous

      Hi mark.

  • greent

    So let me get this straight.

    A business has a bar license.
    The bar business is now illegally operating as a club, as they did not obtain the necessary alteration to their business license.
    The PoPpers say the OP should GTFO.

    THIS is why we can’t have nice things.

  • Robbie

    I would ignore her emails too if I saw the all caps in them. That is the wrong way to get someone’s attention.

  • ShawRes

    I used to live around the corner. Contrary to what I’m reading, that area IS in fact a residential area as well. There are people living next door, a few doors down, and basically behind the club. As someone who has been kept awake by people making noise, urinating, having sex, and fighting in that alley, I understand completely.

    As for when it was BeBar, yes, we still had problems. But this place has done nothing to assuage community concerns, lacks proper security, and has been a general pain to the residents of that neighborhood. I’ll be glad to see it gone, when it finally is.

    • Logan Res

      If you’re referring to the new condo bldg built next door, that was completed well after BeBar/EFN Lounge was there. Anybody who purchased in that building would have known that there was a club immediately next door. The license that BeBar had transferred to Mood. It’s still under the same ownership, just a different bar now. Nothing is being done illegally here by the bar, the owners, or management. The OP has a problem with black people hanging out in his hood, period. You look deeper into any NIMBY attack and the true roots are always in the “us vs. them” or “we don’t like them” category. It’s about their level of comfort with people who are different than them.

      • ceeps

        That is ridiculous. I live in a town house near 8th that was built WAY before Mood/BeBar/whatever was there before. EFN could be noisy at times, but only with Mood have I had the displeasure of actually being woken up at night due to rowdy bar patrons.

        The only people I’m “uncomfortable” with are noisy people that wake me up.

  • Trixie

    “A business has a bar license.
    The bar business is now illegally operating as a club, as they did not obtain the necessary alteration to their business license.
    The PoPpers say the OP should GTFO”


    Of course, the original complaint had nothing to do with race, but we are all very sensitive here.

    • greent

      I see. PoPpers are either liberal suburban white kids with too-much-white-liberal-guilt or out and out racists.


      • Trixie

        I just think it’s really interesting that any time someone voices a concern about anything (a bar acting illegally as a club, kids banging on the walls of the metro), they’re either told to “leave” or that they are racist (there are two posters that have clearly indicated that the OP does not like black people).

        The immediate jump to the “racist!” side of that equation, particularly in cases where race doesn’t even factor, makes me really wonder about the mindset in our city. Is it guilt? I’m not sure. Is it insane? Frequently.

  • LiveInShaw

    I too live near Mood and when the club (not lounge) opens at 10 the music is OK. Around midnight until 2am is when I can clearly hear them inside my house. Did I buy in a mixed-use area? Yes! But I also bought near a “lounge” that has a VA that states (if anyone even bothered to read it)

    “6. Noise and Privacy: Applicant will comply with Title 25, Section 725 of DC Code…and take all necessary action to ensure that music, noise, and vibrations from the establishment and not audible within any adjacent residential properties.”

    Yes, I expect some outside noise from living in a city. But when I’m 10ft from my tv watching a movie I should be able to hear my movie and not Mood. Right? And yes, my windows are closed.

    Residents near Mood have been lodging complaints since January for noise violations, violations to trash pickup times (also outlined in the VA), patrons having sex and urinating in the alley, and overall disrespect for the neighborhood. Yes, there is a sign now that says “Please do not urinate in the alley.” Honestly, do we really need to tell adults how to behave?

    To say the area is a commercial corridor or residential are both inaccurate. It’s VERY mixed. Old row houses, new condos, warehouses, art galleries, churches, a gas station, “sundevich” shop, and a convention center (which for all the people who say the convention center makes this area commercial are way off – the nearest entrance to the convenction center is 3 blocks away. No foot traffic from the convention center makes its way up to 9th & O.)

    It’s also worth noting that Bishop Art Gallery (3 doors down) has gallery events on some weekend nights. The owners have met with residents at ANC & neighborhood meetings and have had much success addressing problems that came up (one about posting flyers around the neighborhood). Their events now take place on a regular basis without any problems or complaints.

    The Voluntary Agreement MUST be inforced and if violated the alcohol license revoked. Laws must be enforced or why have them? As a resident I can’t play my music as loug as Mood, but they can. The ANC does have a complaint against Mood that they are in violation of their VA. A “show cause” hearing has been requested but not yet scheduled.

  • Shaw Neighbor


    This is the link to a petition created with the blessings of the Blagden Alley Naylor Court Association. It has already been signed by many respected and influential members of the neighborhood. (passed unanimously at last week’s meeting)

    Please check out the link. If you agree with the letter then go ahead and sign the petition in support of closing the MOOD Lounge because of its many brazen violations including but not limited to its voluntary agreement.


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