D.C. News Briefs

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Housing Department Plans Ivy City Outreach Session

The Department of Housing and Community Development has scheduled a community outreach and first-time home buyers' session for Ivy City residents concerning the District's Special Demonstration Project for the Northeast neighborhood, which is near Gallaudet University.

The gathering will be from 10 a.m. to noon April 18 at the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services, 1000 Mount Olivet Rd. NE. The event is geared to Ivy City residents who want to become homeowners. For more information or to request special accommodations, contact Andrea Lee at 202-478-1355 or

In December, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) announced that 37 properties would be turned into market rate and affordable housing, and that an additional 58 new units -- 52 affordable housing units and six market rate units -- would be built to increase homeownership and development in Ivy City. Representatives from developers Manna, Mission First Development, Habitat for Humanity and Mi Casa will discuss these housing projects.

Housing Counseling Services will conduct a pre-purchase orientation session for first-time home buyers and people interested in applying for the D.C. Home Purchase Assistance Program.

40 Hospitality Workers Join Downtown Patrol

The Downtown D.C. Business Improvement District added 40 newly trained Safety, Hospitality and Maintenance employees Friday.

The SAM workers, in their yellow and red uniforms, have been a downtown fixture since the program started in 1997. They patrol and help maintain the 138-square-block area between the Capitol and the White House seven days a week. The new employees join the program's 90 other workers in anticipation of the spring and summer tourism seasons. Seventy percent of the corps members are D.C. residents.

New safety and hospitality staff members undergo two weeks of training in areas such as crime prevention and reporting, first aid and first responder skills, communications and homeless services. That is followed by four weeks of field training with experienced program workers. Maintenance staffers pick up litter, paint, plant flowers, hang banners and remove graffiti. Their one-week training course involves learning how to care for trees and work with property managers, public works employees and D.C. police officers.

For information on the program, go to

War of 1812 Museum To Open This Weekend

The National Society United States Daughters of 1812 will dedicate its Memorial Library and Museum, which adjoins the group's national headquarters, at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at 1461 Rhode Island Ave. NW.

The specialized library contains War of 1812 reference materials, including a collection of rare newspapers from 1793 to 1815 and the society's compilation of 9,000 graves of War of 1812 soldiers. For information, go to

The museum houses a collection of War of 1812 artifacts, many donated decades ago by descendants of the war's veterans.

Displays include ship's logs, paper money and coins from the era, uniform parts and hats, canteens, swords, shot bags, powder horns and a musket documented to have been used at the Battle of New Orleans.

The main gallery features two extremely rare regimental flags. One is a 12-star U.S. flag that was carried during the War of 1812 by a regiment from Onondaga County, N.Y. Also on display is the sextant from the USS Carolina, sunk during the Battle of New Orleans.

The United States Daughters of 1812 was founded in 1892 and chartered by an act of Congress in 1901. The library and the museum will be open to the public on a limited basis.

-- Compiled by TERENCE McARDLE

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