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Best of Gay D.C. 2017: COMMUNITY

Winners from the Washington Blade’s annual poll



Gay D.C., gay news, Washington Blade

(Washington Blade photos by Michael Key)

Best Art Gallery

Phillips Collection

A Washington institution founded in 1921. Last year’s runner-up in this category.

1600 21st St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: LongView Gallery

‘Luncheon of the Boating Party’ by Pierre-August Renoir (Image public domain)

Best Adult Store

Bite the Fruit

Second consecutive win in this category!

1723 Connecticut Ave., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Lotus Blooms

(Photo by Bigstock)

Best Car Dealership


New and used cars at locations in Suitland, Temple Hills, Silver Spring, Md. et. al.

Editor’s choice: BMW of Fairfax

DARCARS (Photo public domain)

Best Apartment/Condo Building

Atlantic Plumbing

Second consecutive win in this category!

2112 8th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: F1RST Residences

Atlantic Plumbing (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Doctor/Medical Provider: Dr. Robyn Zeiger

Runner-up: Dr. Ray Martins, Whitman-Walker Health

Dr. Robyn Zeiger is a licensed clinical professional counselor in D.C., Maryland and West Virginia specializing in LGBT issues and pet loss.

Zeiger, who is married to Best Real Estate runner-up Stacey Williams-Zeiger, deals with issues surrounding homophobia, coming out, grief and addictions. She also has begun focusing on servicing the transgender community.

She says being able to relate with your therapist gives a familiarity that makes it easier to be vulnerable in sessions.

“You walk into a therapist’s office and you know they are also LGBT so you don’t have to explain anything. You don’t have to teach them. You can just be yourself and you don’t have to justify anything,” Zeiger, runner-up in this category last year, says.

In addition to counseling, Zeiger is an adjunct senior lecturer at University of Maryland where she teaches in the Department of Family Science. She also teaches her self-created course, “Exploring Homophobia: Demystifying LGBT Issues,” for the Honors College. (MC)

Dr. Robyn Zeiger

10300 Sweetbriar Pkwy.

Silver Spring, Md.

Dr. Robyn Zeiger (Photo by Lori Gross/Red Leash Photography)

Best Fitness or Workout Spot


A Best of Gay D.C. surprise win — VIDA Fitness won the seven previous consecutive years.

2301 M St., N.W.

601 Massachusetts Ave., N.W.

1935 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: VIDA Fitness

SoulCycle (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Gayborhood


Second consecutive win in this category!

Editor’s choice: Logan Circle (last year’s runner up)

Shaw (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Hardware Store

Logan Ace Hardware

1734 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Annie’s Ace Hardware

MidCity Dog Days, gay news, Washington Blade

Logan Hardware (Washington Blade photo by Antwan J. Thompson)

Best Home Furnishings

Miss Pixie’s Furnishings & Whatnot

Also won this award 2012-2015. Snags it back this year from Mitchell Gold+Bob Williams.

1626 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Room & Board

Miss Pixie’s (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Home Improvement Service

Case Design

“Full-service home remodelers building your dreams.”

Editor’s choice: The Organizing Agency

(Photo courtesy of Case Design)

Best Hotel

The W

Third consecutive win in this category!

515 15th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Dupont Circle Hotel

W Hotel (Photo by Jeffrey Totaro; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Best House of Worship

Empowerment Liberation Cathedral

Third consecutive win. Foundry United Methodist had dominated the category for several previous years.

633 Sligo Avenue, Silver Spring


Editor’s choice: All Souls Unitarian (also last year’s runner-up)

(Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Lawyer

Glen Ackerman

Ackerman Brown PLLC

2101 L St., N.W., no. 440

Runner-up: Michele Zavos

Glen Ackerman (Photo courtesy of Ackerman)

Best LGBT Social Group

Stonewall Sports

Editor’s choice: Impulse D.C.

(Washington Blade photo by Ben Keller)

Best LGBT Support Group


Supporting and Mentoring Youth Advocates and Leaders

Third consecutive win in this category!

410 7th St., S.E.

Editor’s choice: The D.C. Center

(Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best LGBT Sports League

Stonewall Kickball (last year’s runner-up)

Editor’s choice: D.C. Frontrunners

(Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best LGBT-Owned Business

Three Fifty Bakery and Coffee Bar

Editor’s Choice: Best Bus

Three Fifty Bakery is, in a word, darling. In 2014, just after it opened, owner Jimmy Hopper said in a Washington Blade interview that some day that he’d “like to win a readers’ poll prize for the bakery.”

So, congratulations, Jimmy — and it’s a well-deserved honor. The bright space has become a neighborhood favorite in just a scant few years, serving up smaller quantities of freshly baked goods, from cinnamon-laced bundt cakes drizzled with icing to coma-inducing fudgy brownies to zucchini bread.

The fact that Three Fifty doesn’t overproduce means that each bite really does taste fresh, and that makes all the difference when you’re indulging in a treat. Working out is overrated, but freshly-baked coconut cake is not. (KH)

Three Fifty Bakery and Coffee Bar

1926 17th St., N.W.

Jimmy Hopper (Washington Blade photo by Tom Hausman)

Most LGBT-friendly Workplace

Whitman-Walker Health

1525 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Town, Trade and Number Nine

The Walk to End HIV is an annual event for Whitman-Walker Health. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best LGBT Event

Capital Pride Celebration

Editor’s choice: SMYAL Fall Brunch

The 2017 Capital Pride Parade (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Museum

National Museum of African-American History and Culture

1400 Constitution Ave., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Hirshorn

(Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Non-Profit


Supporting and Mentoring Youth Advocates and Leaders

410 7th St., S.E.

Editor’s choice: Latino GLBT History Project

SMYAL Fall Brunch (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Private School

Maret School

A coed, K-12 independent school founded in 1911.

3000 Cathedral Ave., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Barrie

The Maret School (Photo by Aaron Siirila; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Best Pet Business

Doggy Style Bakery, Boutique & Pet Spa

1642 R St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Dogma Day Care

Doggy Style Bakery, Boutique & Pet Spa (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Place to Buy Second-hand Stuff

Miss Pixie’s Furnishings and Whatnot

Third consecutive win in this category!

1626 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Buffalo Exchange (last year’s runner-up)

Miss Pixies (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Movie Theater

Landmark Theaters Atlantic Plumbing

New releases plus indie fare, foreign and avant garde.

807 V St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Landmark Theaters E Street Cinema

Landmark Theaters Atlantic Plumbing (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Rehoboth Business

r Squared Design

39 Baltimore Ave.

Rehoboth Beach, Del.

Editor’s choice: Blue Moon

Rex Rogosch of R Squared Design (Photo by Russ Hickman)

Best Salon/Spa

Logan 14

Second consecutive win in this category!

1314 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s Choice: Salon Quency

Logan 14 (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Best Short-Term Car Service


Editor’s choice: Zip Car

Car2Go (Photo by Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz)

Best Staycation Getaway

MGM National Harbor

101 MGM national Ave.

Oxon Hill, Md.

Editor’s choice: Discover Easton

MGM National Harbor (Photo by Robb Scharteg; courtesy MGM)

Best Tattoo Parlor

Tattoo Paradise

2444 18th St., N.W.

Editor’s choice: Fatty’s Tattoos

Tattoo Paradise (Photo courtesy of Facebook)

Best Theater

Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

Third consecutive win in this category!

2700 F St., N.W.

Editor’s Choice: Studio Theatre

The Kennedy Center (Photo by Mack Male; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Best Theater Production

“Wig Out!” at Studio Theatre

Editor’s Choice: “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” at the Kennedy Center

Wig Out, gay news, Washington Blade

Edwin Brown III, left, and Desmond Bing in ‘Wig Out!’ (Photo by Teresa Wood, courtesy Studio)

Best Vet

CityPaws Animal Hospital

Third consecutive win in this category!

1823 14th St., N.W.

Editor’s Choice: District Veterinary Hospital

City Paws (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

To see winners in other categories in the Washington Blade’s Best of Gay D.C. 2017 Awards, click here.

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Music & Concerts

John Levengood releases anthem “Say Gay!” to protest discrimination

Slated to perform new song at 2022 Capital Pride Festival in June



Recording artist John Levengood’s latest song ‘Say Gay!’ is out Friday. (Photo courtesy Levengood)

“Say gay! Say gay! Say gay!
“Say what? Say what?
“One little law won’t shut us up!”

Slated for digital release this Friday, recording artist John Levengood’s latest song “Say Gay!” confronts anti-LGBTQ legislation such as the “Don’t Say Gay” law by encouraging others to “profess their queerness loudly, proudly, and never in the shadows,” Levengood said in a press release shared with the Blade on Tuesday.

On June 12, Levengood is set to perform the song’s live debut at the 2022 Capital Pride Festival in Washington, D.C., to streets teeming with community members, food trucks, and local vendors, according to the press release.

“The rise in oppressive legislation and proposals have many in the LGBTQ+ community alarmed,” the press release says. Levengood “hopes this song can be used as a metaphorical weapon to blast holes in the argument that teaching children about acceptance and diversity is more appropriate at home than school.”

The bill, enacted by the Florida Legislature earlier this year but not yet in force, would limit teachers’ ability to teach LGBTQ topics in some school settings and obligate school officials to disclose students’ sexual orientation and gender identity to their parents upon request.

A D.C. resident himself, Levengood currently works over the weekends as resident host and karaoke emcee at Freddie’s Beach Bar in Arlington, Va., an LGBTQ bar and restaurant.

Levengood is no stranger to the music scene, in 2013 moving through multiple rounds of auditions for the third season of “The X Factor” before coming up short of formally appearing on the show, according to the release.

Growing up in the Shenandoah Valley of rural Virginia, the press release added that music has been an outlet for Levengood to express himself from an early age. The new song marks his seventh musical release.

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Arts & Entertainment

10 LGBTQ events this week

It is Black LGBTQ Pride and Memorial Day Weekend



Below are our picks for some of the most fun and creative things to do this week in D.C. that are of special interest to the LGBTQ community.

BenDeLaCreme “Ready to be Committed”

BenDeLaCreme (Photo by Magnus Hastings)

Monday, May 23
7 p.m.
9:30 Club
815 V Street, N.W.
Facebook | Website | Ticketmaster

“RuPaul’s Drag Race” alumni BenDeLaCreme performs “Ready to be Committed” at the 9:30 Club Monday. Doors open at 7 p.m. Seating is first come, first serve.

Mystery Reveal Party

(Image via Facebook)

Wednesday, May 25
9 p.m.
1410 14th Street, N.W.

Meet the mystery guest at a mystery reveal party hosted by Jaxknife on Wednesday. Mystery drink specials include $3 shots and $7 beer/shot combos.

Black, Gay and Thriving

(Image via Facebook)

Thursday, May 26
5:30 p.m.
ANC 5D Community Meeting Room
371 Morse Street, N.E.
Facebook | Eventbrite

Gay Professional Men of Color (GPMC) holds a networking event on Thursday at the beginning of Black Pride Weekend in D.C.

LGBTQ+ Evening Out in Del Ray

Evening Star in Del Ray, Va. (Photo via Facebook)

Thursday, May 26
7-10 p.m.
Bar No. 9 Lounge at the Evening Star
2000 Mt Vernon Avenue
Alexandria, Va.
Facebook | Eventbrite

Join a free gathering and make some new friends at the Bar No. 9 Lounge (upstairs) in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Va. on Thursday.

Trans Agenda

(Image via Facebook)

Thursday, May 26
9 p.m.
1519 17th Street, N.W.

A show featuring all trans performers at JR.’s includes host MasVusi, Silver Ware, Chata Uchis and St. Patrick Star.

RuPaul’s Drag Race British Invasion Tour

(Image via Live Nation)

Friday, May 27
8 p.m.
Warner Theatre
513 13th Street, N.W.
Facebook | Live Nation

See the queens of RuPaul’s Drag Race U.K. as the British Invasion Tour makes its Washington, D.C. stop at the Warner Theatre on Friday.


(Image via Facebook)

Friday, May 27
9 p.m.
Green Lantern
1335 Green Court, N.W.
no cover

Enjoy a Kicks & Giggles dance party at the Green Lantern complete with DJs and glow paint. From 9 to 10 p.m., if you’re wearing body paint on your chest or back, you drink for free!

Anything But Clothes Party

(Image via Facebook)

Saturday, May 28
9 p.m.
The Lodge
21614 National Pike
Boonsboro, Md.
$5 cover before 10 p.m. / $8 cover after 10 p.m.

Join Capital DJ Chase for the “Anything But Clothes Party” at The Lodge on Saturday. There will be a most creative outfit (not clothes) contest at midnight.

Black Pride Brunch & Babes

(Image via Facebook)

Sunday, May 29
11:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
Karma Night Club
2221 Adams Place, N.E.

Celebrate Black Pride with the Capitol Ballroom Council at a ballroom performance with a catered brunch buffet and bottomless memosas- Sunday, May 29, 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Black Pride Brunch & Babes at Karma Night Club.

Flashy Memorial Day Weekend

(Image via Facebook)

Sunday, May 29
10 p.m.-5 a.m.
645 Florida Avenue, N.W.
$30 advance / $40 door
Facebook | Eventbrite

Celebrate Memorial Day Weekend Sunday night into the wee hours of the morning at Flash. Music by DJ Twin, DJ Sean Morris and DJ Lemz.

If you would like to let us know about an upcoming event, email [email protected] with details.

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PHOTOS: Summer Kickoff Party

Washington Blade holds annual event at The Pines in Rehoboth Beach



Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester shares a laugh with Blade Editor Kevin Naff at the Summer Kickoff Party on Saturday. (Blade photo by Daniel Truitt)

The Washington Blade held its 15th annual Summer Kickoff Party at The Pines in Rehoboth Beach, Del. on Friday, May 20 with special guest Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-Del.).

(Washington Blade photos by Daniel Truitt)

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