Pat Kennedy - Your Washington, DC Real Estate Connection


Takoma Park, Maryland - Back To The Sixties

 When the 60’s turned into the 70’s and we re-elected President Nixon, most of the hippies in the Washington, DC area moved to Takoma Park, circled the wagons, and declared the place a nuclear-free zone.  Then they elected Sammy Abbot, a leftie who was blackballed during the McCarthy era as their mayor.  He reigned for a couple of decades and now has a municipal building named in his memory.

This town sits on the DC/Maryland line, and it has a mix of wonderful old Victorian homes, Sears bungalows, and a few mid-century architectural statements.  And there are a lot of aging hippies who still live there.

Many of the early 1900’s homes have been updated, as the flower children of the 60s picked up law degrees, real estate licenses and six figure incomes.  But the flavor of the place is still hippie funk.  And the lawyers there all work for environmental groups and the real estate agents drive Priuses.

If you want to find Christmas presents that were not made in China, you’re in luck.  I did some shopping in the historic downtown today, and found it not too crowded with a huge selection.

The House of Musical Traditions, for example, carries not only banjos, drums, violins and fifes, but also attire for that belly dancer on your shopping list.
























Amano (no, not Armani) has a shoe selection perfect for real estate professionals who spend so much of their time walking around and need something a bit more comfortable than Manolo Blohniks.  While I was there, I bought a beautiful velvet scarf and pair of gloves for my niece and found a scarf for myself with golden threads that will go very nicely with my flute.













Then there was a lunch at the Savory, where I frequently stop for a break with clients when I’m showing houses.  They have organic treats for vegetarians and carnivores alike.

The townspeople are committed to recycling.  There are a lot of vintage clothing stores, including Polly Sue’s and Rerun.  The Rerun was burning enough incense to cover up a 60s style pot party you’d expect to find in the back room (but didn’t).  It was a little overwhelming. 




















You can take your recycled hippy dress to S&A Beads, and you’ll find all of the supplies you need to customize it. 


















Before I headed home, I decided to stop at the Takoma Park Coop for some produce.

 I also stopped by the smell good counter to check out the essential oils, and left smelling quite interesting.

It's probably better that I didn't have a client in the car on the way home!

If you haven't finished your Christmas shopping, a trip to Takoma Park to pick up those last minute gifts is a lot easier than trekking or schlepping out to Tyson's Corners or Montgomery Mall.  And it's not just a shopping trip.  It's sort of a trip down memory lane, at least if you used to be a hippy. 





Comment balloon 10 commentsPatricia Kennedy • December 23 2007 10:29PM


Patricia-My daughter (the one I'm visiting in the UK) used to be the grocery manager at the Takoma Park co-op.  She lived just up the street in the top half of one of the older houses in town.  Our favorite place to grab a bite to eat was Mark's Kitchen.  She enjoyed reading your post and seeing the pictures of her old haunt!
Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 12 years ago
Patricia, thanks for the colorful tour of Takoma Park.  That produce looks good enough to eat -- I just tried grabbing it off the computer monitor!  And you know, I do have a bellydancer on my shopping list...
Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 12 years ago
Patricia thanks for the looks into the area, I have never been that area, sounds very interesting, perhaps I will have to visit it one day in the spring.  Happy Holidays,  we're gonna be GREAT in 08!
Posted by South Austin Real Estate Blog (Sky Realty South Austin) over 12 years ago

I love Takoma Park.  Sounds like you had a wonderful time - but shopping? so late?   I figured you'd be done by now?  hehe

Cheers & Merry Christmas!

Posted by James Downing - Metro DC Houses Team REALTORS®, CRS, GRI, ABR,MRP, MilRes, When Looking to Buy or Sell - Make the Right Move (Real Living | At Home) over 12 years ago
Patricia, I'd love to go back to D.C. for a visit.  I have only been one time and that was many years ago.  We didn't get to stay long.  I was amazed how everything is so close together.  I'm in Texas - wide open spaces.
Posted by Kay Perry (Kay Perry, Broker) over 12 years ago
Patricia - you make Takoma Park so enticing. I'd love to do some shopping there this afternoon, but unless you have a magic carpet to give me a round trip ride, I don't think I'd get back in time for Christmas Eve.
Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International) over 12 years ago
Patricia- The produce looks great and so do the beads! What a fun place to go! Katerina
Posted by Katerina Gasset, Get It Done For Me Virtual Services (Get It Done For Me Virtual Services ) over 12 years ago
Hi Patricia:  Ahhh... just what I need... a place to meet other aging hippies.  I was one of those hippie teachers back in the sixties and seventies.  Fun thing was... I was teaching in the Catholic schools in Cleveland at the time.  Guitar masses, folk songs during homeroom, a time I occasionally long for.  Thanks for taking us on this great tour.  I really didn't know very much about Takoma Park.  Thanks for sharing.
Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 12 years ago
Patricia:  A memory from the past.  This was in 68 or 69.  I was taking two busloads of eighth graders from Cleveland to DC on a "field trip."  We went to Gettysburg, Bull Run, and did the DC tour.  I will never forget when the two busses pulled into the main area of DC.  We were greeted by the Army... they were everywhere.  There were protesters everwhere.  I remember that several of the federal buildings had ledges at the second floor level, and these buildings were "ringeg" with soldiers with bayonets drawn... on the ledges of many of the buildings... completely encircling the entire buildings.  They were ready for anything.  Myself and another teacher, and three pairs of parents along with 84 eighth graders seeing history in the making.  What a memory.
Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 12 years ago
Patricia - this is going on my list of places to visit during my trip to DC this Spring!!!!
Posted by Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor (Charles Rutenberg Realty) over 12 years ago