2020 was a year and a half, and most of us are not too sad to see the back of it. Was it only this year that Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans resigned from DC Council? Was there really a time when we were debating the merits of wearing face coverings in the fight against COVID-19? But there was. Take a quick journey through some snapshots from the year that was before you look up and ahead to 2021, the year to come.
Wishing you a happy, healthy 2021.
[click to enlarge the photos]
Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans resigned amid scandal, but the harbinger of things to come should have been the collapse of a building on North Florida Avenue, from which two pedestrians narrowly escaped.
Mayor Muriel Bowser campaigned for former New York Mayor Micheal Bloomberg. Ground was broken on the Southwest Library and Payne Elementary celebrated the history and future of the school community in the last days of togetherness.
In March, Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) issued a stay-at-home order for the District, closing down non-essential businesses and indoor dining at restaurants and bars. Still, the Hill spirit shone through as neighbors stepped up to help neighbors weather the pandemic.
Excessive crowds at the Fish Market in early April closed down all outdoor markets pending application for a permit. Businesses faced additional challenges, with some finding creative ways of adapting an dothers battening down the hatches.
In May, beloved Seventh Street SE restaurants Montmartre and 7th Hill Pizza called it quits, for reasons unrelated to the pandemic. Businesses banded together to find solutions and to help the community.
The District and the world reacted to the death of George Floyd. Protests took place at the White House and on the Hill, in opposition to hatred and in support of neighbors. The District entered Phase 2 of restricutions June 22, reopening restaurant dining.
In July the world lost US Representative John Lewis, only two weeks after celebrating July 4th in ways either muted or amplified. Protests continued, and contraversy about the Emancipation Monument in Lincoln Park heated up.
Students readied return to classes virtually, with local organizations stepping up to ensure they had all necessary supplies. Meanwhile, major projects marked milestones, with the arch completed on the Frederick Douglass Bridge and the opening of the new Capitol Hill Safeway.
Families continued to adjust to the realities of simultaneous virtual work and school from home. Mourners headed to the Supreme Court to mourn the loss of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. The fence came down from around the Lincoln Park monuments, and new businesses opened. But was it a calm before a pandemic storm?
As DC Mayor Muriel Bowser continued to look for ways to get students in classrooms, families and teachers expressed concern about planning and safety. An art installation at the DC Armory reminded visitors of the cost of the pandemic by marking each US life lost to COVID-19 with a flag, running out of space by the time the installation ended in November. Still, there were new beginnings on the Hill as art was selected for the Eastern Market Metro Station entrance and a new rector came to a Capitol Hill church.
The start of the holidays marked an increase in COVID-19 cases and delayed testing. But many rejoiced when Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden was delared the winner of the election.
Vaccines were delivered to the District, making it posible to catch a glimpse of the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. The District had vaccinated more than 11,000 people before Christmas Day. Families were unable to gather withone another into our homes, and perhaps that is why Capitol Hill seems to have done an exceptional job of decorating this year, wrapping every house as a gift to our neighbors.