2016 Anacostia River Festival - Celebrating the Anacostia River, Anacostia Park and the National Park Service’s 2016 Centennial

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Date: February 17, 2016
Contact: Emily Linroth, National Park Service, 202.619.7156
Contact: Shahara Anderson-Davis, 11th Street Bridge Park, 202.889.5901 x207
Contact: Nora Strumpf, National Cherry Blossom Festival, 202.638.8374

Washington, D.C. (February 17, 2016)–The National Park Service and the 11th Street Bridge Park present the second annual Anacostia River Festival, a premier event and official closing program of the National Cherry Blossom Festival. This year's Anacostia River Festival celebrates "connecting people to parks" in recognition of the National Park Service's Centennial celebration. Activities include: kayaking, boating, fishing workshops, hands-on art projects, musical performances, bike parades, and other unique programs engaging families with the river, its history and ecology. Held in Anacostia Park, this FREE event will encourage District residents and tourists alike to explore communities and parks east of the river.

Anacostia River Festival

When: Sunday, April 17, 2016;1 pm –5 pm

Where: National Park Service's Anacostia Park. Good Hope Road and Anacostia Drive SE

Who: FREE and open to the public.

For more information: bridgepark.org/ARF

"This festival brings together residents from across the D.C. region to discover an amazing natural resource –the Anacostia River" said Scott Kratz, Director of the 11th Street Bridge Park, a project of the Ward 8 nonprofit Building Bridges Across the River at THEARC. "Visitors can celebrate the Anacostia River and communities who live and work along its banks through music, story-telling and art."

The festival will feature art exhibitions, live music performances and hands-on activities. Visitors can participate in hands-on art workshops, fishing workshops, a community bicycle parade, free kayaking and canoeing and other family-friendly activities reengaging residents and tourists alike with D.C.'s local Anacostia River.

"As the National Park Service celebrates its centennial year, we are inviting people to discover and enjoy the incredible national parks right in their communities," Anacostia Park Superintendent Gopaul Noojibail said. "We're working with partners and neighbors to present the Anacostia River Festival and encourage everyone to 'Find Your Park'—near or far—in 2016."

Held in Anacostia Park, one of America's national parks, and steps away from the future 11th Street Bridge Park, the event is free of charge and is the official closing program of the National Cherry Blossom Festival.

"As the 2016 Festival aims to connect people to parks, the Anacostia River Festival will be an exciting conclusion to over three weeks of events that celebrate the outdoors,"said Diana Mayhew, President of the National Cherry Blossom Festival. "At its heart, the Festival is about community and we are thrilled to expand its roots with this annual event East of the River."

The Anacostia River Festival is presented by the National Park Service and the 11th Street Bridge Park in partnership with the National Cherry Blossom Festival. Funds for the Anacostia River Festival are provided in part by Bloomberg. Other supporters include City First Bank of DC, MRP Realty, The JBG Companies and National Capital Bank.

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About the National Park Service

More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 410 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.

The National Park Service is working to make Anacostia Park a signature urban park that improves people's lives and protects the quality and resiliency of the Anacostia River ecosystem. The park provides inspirational natural spaces easily accessible to area residents and visitors and offers a wide range of recreational and educational opportunities. To learn more about Anacostia Park visit www.nps.gov/anac.

About the 11th Street Bridge Park, a project of Building Bridges Across the River at THEARC

As the old 11th Street traffic bridges that connect Washington, D.C.'s Capitol Hill and historic Anacostia neighborhoods have aged out, a local non-profit Building Bridges Across the River at THEARC –and the District government are transforming this old infrastructure into the city's first elevated park: a new venue for healthy recreation, environmental education and the arts.

The 11th Street Bridge Park will be a place unlike any other in Washington, D.C. –one that supports the community's physical, environmental, cultural and economic health. After a seven-month design competition informed by more than 500 community meetings, the design team of OMA+OLIN was selected in October 2014. With the design in place, Bridge Park staff has launched a capital campaign to construct this new civic space, securing more than $10 million to date. For more information and to see the OMA+OLIN renderings, visit www.bridgepark.org.

The Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus (THEARC) is a $27 million, 110,000 square-foot campus located east of the Anacostia River in Washington, D.C.'s Ward 8. The mission of THEARC is to improve the quality of life for residents of Washington, D.C.'s East of the River community, a key goal of the future 11th Street Bridge Park.

About the National Cherry Blossom Festival

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is the nation's greatest springtime celebration. The 2016 Festival, March 20 –April 17, includes three spectacular weeks and four weekends of events featuring diverse and creative programming promoting traditional and contemporary arts and culture, natural beauty, and community spirit. Visit nationalcherryblossomfestival.org for more information, and find us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.



Last updated: February 18, 2016

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