Daily Roast

'Objects of Wonder' at National Museum of Natural History Museum

July 23, 2017

Stay cool this summer by checking out one of the many fascinating exhibitions on our National Mall.


The Natural Museum of Natural History is currently showing “Objects of Wonder,” the world’s most extensive natural history research collection—more than 145 million artifacts and specimens. The exhibition examines how scientists use Smithsonian collections to enlighten and illuminate our understanding of nature and human culture.


Objects featured in the exhibition include Martha, who was the last known passenger pigeon, and the “Blue Flame,” one of the world’s largest and finest pieces of gem-quality lapis lazuli. Moreover, some of the objects are celebrated for their value to researchers, such as the Pinniped fossil, one of the earliest members of the group of animals that includes living seals, sea lions and walruses, and the 1875 Tsimshian House Front, one of the best examples of Native Alaskan design artwork. The exhibition also feature visually striking displays of exotic wood, tiger cowries, and a remarkable array of insects and tiny deep-sea corals.

artwork. The exhibition also features visually striking displays of exotic wood, tiger cowries, and a remarkable array of insects and tiny deep-sea corals.


National Museum of Natural History is located at 10th Street on Constitution Avenue, NW. This exhibit is on the 2nd floor.

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Poncho Sanchez Live at Blues Alley in July

June 28, 2017

Latin Jazz legend/percussionist Poncho Sanchez will be performing live at Blues Alley July 20 through July 23, 2017.


For more than three decades as both a leader and a sideman, conguero Poncho Sanchez has stirred up a fiery stew of straightahead jazz, gritty soul music, and infectious melodies and rhythms from a variety of Latin American and South American sources.  Poncho Sanchez was born in Texas on October 30, 1951 into a large Mexican-American family (rumor has it that his 13-year old mother fled to the U.S. after hiding under the bed as revolutionary Pancho Villa stormed her village), but grew up in the Los Angeles area, where he was weaned on a broad range of Latin and non-Latin popular music. Inspired by the conga playing of Cuban great Mongo Santamaria, he honed his skills as a percussionist and broke into the limelight at the age of 23 when he joined vibraphonist Cal Tjader's famed Latin jazz ensemble in 1975. Poncho performed with him until Tjader's untimely death in 1982. A year later, he began his unprecedented 23-year relationship with Concord Records, which has produced two dozen recordings, a Grammy Award and several Grammy nominations. 


"To me, Latin jazz is the world's greatest music," it has the melodic and harmonic sophistication of jazz and American standards, and the flavor and energy of Latin American music. What I'm most proud of is that this music – while it may sound exotic at times – is from America. It was born in New York City, when Chano Pozo met Dizzy Gillespie for the first time in the mid-1940s. They created something that didn't exist before in this country. I'm very proud to take this music all over the world all the time." Poncho Sanchez


For tickets, click here.

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Kitty Kelley Hosts Marian Wright Edelman

May 25, 2017

“The aftermath of our unexpected and shocking national political tsunami places a half century of hard earned child investments, policies and programs at risk of complete dismantlement and/or massive cuts. We need your help as we struggle to set our compass on how best to get our children’s little boats to safe harbor in this unprecedented, unpredictable and turbulent national sea."   Marian Wright Edelman

Marian Wright Edelman and Stephen Maitland-Lewis (Photo by: Crystal Rucker) Marian Wright Edelman and Stephen Maitland-Lewis


Founder and president of the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF), Marian Wright Edelman was Kitty Kelley’s very special guest Monday evening. Ushering close friends into her elegant Georgetown home and garden (recently featured on the Georgetown Garden Tour), Kelley introduced the lifelong advocate for disadvantaged children.  


Edelman was clear, "The greatest national, military, and economic security issue does not come from any outside enemy but comes from our failure to invest in our children and the next generation."


Highlighting the urgent need for action, Edelman encouraged guests to get involved, support CDF programs, to speak up and speak out about the need to protect children's health care and education. 

Kitty Kelley talking with Dina Curtis (Photo by: Crystal Rucker) Kitty Kelley talking with Dina Curtis

“We will keep planting and nurturing seeds to organize a movement to end immoral, indefensible and costly child poverty in America as the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s Poor People’s Campaign approaches in 2018. The Poor People’s Campaign gave birth to CDF’s parent organization, the Washington research Project, in 1968. I know Dr. King would be calling for a campaign to end child poverty in rich America today when wealth and income gaps between rich and poor are at historic levels. That children are the poorest age group in America is morally indefensible and economically costly and a great threat to our future economic and national security. "


Guests were given a copy of Let Freedom Ring: Stanley Tretick's Iconic Images of the March on Washington. As Kelley explained, “This is more Marian’s book. Marian and I both loved the photographer … Marian was there, knew the photographer, and I’m lucky enough to have done the accompanying essay.”


For more information, visit Children's Defense Fund.

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