Day Date at the Anacostia Arts Center, DC

After the success of our monthly dates last year, Charles and I decided to keep it going for like… forever.

And in case you’re wondering, we have three simple rules to abide by when it comes to our dates:

1) I can’t bring my “big & bulky” SLR camera along <- Charles’s rule
2) We should spend no more than $100 max on a date (ideally way less than that) <- My rule
3) We are each responsible for planning 6 dates and will rotate who plans a date every other month. <- Our rule

On New Year’s Day, we tossed a coin. Charles called tails and the odds were in his favor because the coin toss landed in tails which meant January was his month to plan a date.

This past Saturday, Charles took us out on a day date at the Anacostia Arts Center, located in Southeast DC.  When he finally told me what we were going to do (the night before), I was really excited as I had heard about this organization through my arts management program but hadn’t found time to visit before.

The Anacostia Arts Center’s mission is to provide a “dedicated space for small businesses, artists, arts and cultural organizations to fulfill our commitment to the revitalization and sustainable economic development of Historic Anacostia.”

The Arts Center has a black box theater, space for five galleries/boutiques; a short term exhibition gallery called Blank Space SE, a café, and an 800 square feet lounge area.

And what Charles and I appreciated most about The Arts Center is that the businesses located in the space are all local to DC and/or black owned.

We arrived at the Arts Center around lunch time and decided to grab food first before doing anything else. Located inside their cafe, near the back of the space, was a pop-up managed by Capital Hill Crab Cakes.

We met the owner when we walked in, he explained that it was their first official day as a pop-up in the restaurant space and handed us their pop-up menu to look at. We ordered the crab omelette (sooo good, we ended up ordering another), their crab salad (forgot to take a pic but it was also tasty) and shrimp n’ grits (slammin). To wash it all down, we paired our food with water and mimosas.

While we were eating, the owner stopped by our table to check on us and we got to talkin… During our convo, we learned that  Capital Hill Crab Cakes has an over the counter, take-out spot located down the street from the Arts Center that serves crab cakes, seafood sandwiches and wings.

The reason why the owner decided to do a pop-up was because he was interested in serving plated food a.k.a. meals that were a little more “elevated” than the quick, fried options they typically serve. I admired the fact that the he was stepping out of his comfort zone and trying something new.

Overall, Charles and I agreed that the food we ate was really tasty and made sure to let the owner know he was onto something great with his pop-up.

Bellies full, we browsed through the boutiques and bookstore located inside the Arts Center.

I ended up picking up a novel from the Mahogany Books and a packet of ginger pineapple tea made locally in DC at the beautifully decorated Nubian Hueman Boutique.

Goodies in a bag, it was time to move on to the second part of our date.

We hopped in the truck and made our way down Good Hope Road to Anacostia Park which we learned has an outdoor roller skating rink and provides free skate rentals.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t until when we arrived 6 minutes later that we learned the free skate rental booth was closed because of the government shutdown in DC.

(What we forgot is that when the government shuts down so do all the National Parks. Shout out to 45 for once again messing up everything)

^^ Look at all those tax payer-ed skates going to waste on a beautiful Saturday…

We spent a few minutes jealously watching the kids ride their bikes around the rink before heading back to sit in our truck for 10 minutes trying to figure what else to do.

Since we couldn’t decide on anything specific, we ended up heading back home, grabbing frozen yogurt on the way, and doing the most romantic thing ever = We filed our taxes. (LOL)

And in case you’re wondering how we did with our $100 budget.

Lunch = $51
Book = $10
Tea Packet = $12
Frozen Yogurt = $11
Total = $84

And so concludes our first date of 2018 which means back to home cooked meals and low profile weekends until our next date.

I gotta figure out what we’re going to do for February… Hmmmmmmm.

xo, Setarra

P.S. In Case You Missed It: 8 Hour Layover in Istanbul, Turkey