Sunday, March 28, 2010

Dupont Circle, Washington DC

The weekend of March 6th found us exploring DC once again! The day was cool but sunny. We originally had headed in to go to the National Geographic Museum to see a special exhibit called "The Terra Cotta Warriors" which were life sized clay figures that had been buried in China 2,000 years ago. They had brought just a few of them to the U.S. to be on display. But, alas, all tickets were sold out. So, we went with plan B and just started walking! What we found was just as interesting as we got to explore a part of DC we hadn't spent time in yet... Dupont Circle:)
Dupont Circle is located just a few blocks north of the White House and is considered one of Washington's artiest neighborhoods where Conneticut, Massachusetts & New Hampshire avenues intersect.

We did go into the National Geographic Museum to see a fantastic photo gallery of photos taken by a photographer, Paul Niklen in the arctic called "Polar Obsession".

In the same neighborhood as the museum we happened upon St. Matthew's church where Pres. John F. Kennedy worshipped. The church was built in 1893 with the first Mass being in 1895.

The main Sanctuary, the Chapel of St. Anthony of Padua, & the Wedding Chapel

The organ, the great dome, & the inlaid marble plaque in front of the sanctuary gates which commemorats Pres. Kennedy's funeral Mass.

The next "find" was the beautiful Mayflower Hotel built in 1925.

After that we finally ventured into Dupont Circle. There is a circle park which is the gathering place for the area. There you will see a fountain in the middle commemorating Civil War naval officer Samuel F. Dupont. You will often see people strolling through the park, playing soccer, or playing a game of chess at one of several chess tables situated around the outside.

Not far from Dupont Circle is an area called "Embassy Row" where Washington's diplomatic community is concentrated. More than 175 nations are represented in these buildings.We took a picture of a statue at the Croatian Embassy. Among the embassies is the Islamic Center where an estimated 65,000 Muslims gather.

Also among the embassies was a memorial to Mahatma Ghandi. Sculptured out of bronze, it measures 8 ft. 8 in. tall and commemorates Ghandi's life.

After dinner, we found a hotel, called the Tabard Inn, to have dessert. Built during the 1920's, it was formed during WWI by 3 Victorian townhouses being linked together. It is known to be the oldest continuously operated hotel in Washington D.C.
Another wonderful day!

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