Photo by PoPville flickr user pablo.raw
“Last May’s inaugural Funk Parade was a huge success. It brought together 30,000 people in the U Street neighborhood, showcased nearly 100 hours of music and dance performances, and generated an estimated $1 million in sales for local businesses.
Unfortunately, city officials refused to permit the parade to pass down U Street. The avenue has been a hub of live music and celebration for decades. It has hosted dozens of parades. Marion Barry’s first inaugural parade passed down U Street. But officials refused to close it briefly for Funk Parade, a celebration of the heart and soul of the city.
Instead, city officials forced the parade to use a narrow, inconvenient route down V Street and ending in an alley. The popularity of the event easily overwhelmed the route, and when the parade concluded crowds swarmed onto U Street anyway, forcing an impromptu closure. This petition is to ask the city, let us do it right this year!
The neighborhood supports this request: local ANC 1B has unanimously endorsed closing U Street for the parade. Its transportation committee has carefully reviewed the proposed U Street route, weighed community concerns, and unanimously voted to approve the request. But it needs your voice alongside it.
The Funk Parade is a true community event, supported by more than 100 local businesses and clubs, all the local neighborhood associations, and dozens of arts and culture groups from the Kennedy Center and Cultural DC to dance, music and urban art collectives. But it needs your help to call on DC officials to close U Street!
Missed Funk Parade last year? You missed live go-go, jazz, R&B, Latin, rock, reggae, hip-hop, afrobeat, capoeira, drumming, funk, soul, and samba. Other performances included magic, juggling, flash mobs, gypsy swing, and breakdancing. Basically, everything great about the city rolled into one giant event, and delivered — free! — to your doorstep.
Please sign this petition and help convince city officials that THE FUNK PARADE MUST BE ON U STREET IN 2015!”