Shepherd Park Citizens Association: June 7, 2017

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The Shepherd Park Citizens Association will hold its annual picnic on Sunday, June 25, from 2 to 5 p.m. at Lowell School’s lower field. The whole Shepherd Park, Colonial Village and North Portal Estates area is invited to an afternoon of games, good food, conversation and award presentations. It is also a time to highlight ways in which the association supports the neighborhoods and encourages positive economic development and community service.

In a recent listserv message, association president Mark Pattison reminded us of the history of the organization’s involvement in two citywide groups: the Federation of Civic Associations and the Federation of Citizens Associations. In the beginning, the former was a black organization and the latter a white one.

As those who have attended recent Shepherd Park meetings are aware, the desegregation of the latter federation stems in large part from the work of Joe Hairston, a Shepherd Park resident for 55 years. A longtime social justice activist and a fair housing advocate, Hairston represented Shepherd Park as a member of both groups and used his “if you get to know people, you cannot discriminate against them” motto to bring about change. In its recent elections, the Shepherd Park Citizens Association chose three delegates to each organization — people who have been working to bring change through increasing citywide pressure for legislation and action that improves the lives of all D.C. residents.

Don’t forget the Juanita E. Thornton/Shepherd Park Library book sale this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Hopefully good weather will see tables outside in front of the library, but if it’s rainy, come on in and buy some summer reads.

— June Confer