My Washington: Bethesda lawmaker keeps kids active with Spy Museum, Capital Crescent, Great Wolf Lodge

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October 15, 2011
Washington Examiner 

 

Faves and raves by Ariana Kelly

Ariana Kelly is a Maryland delegate representing Bethesda and Chevy Chase.

PERSONAL STATS

AGE: 34

NUMBER OF YEARS IN D.C. AREA: 26

NEIGHBORHOOD: Bethesda

- Hayley Peterson

1. FAVORITE LOCAL SPORTS EVENT

Washington Nationals games at Nationals Park are my favorite. I'm a longtime Redskins fan, and FedEx Field gets the job done. But I miss the electricity of RFK. One of the great perks of my job is getting to attend local high school sporting events. I had a number of wonderful campaign volunteers from Walter Johnson, B-CC and Whitman. I love to bring my kids to their games to cheer them on, and wax nostalgic about my own WJ days.

2. BEST MODE OF TRANSPORTATION

Nothing beats a bike on a beautiful day. Or the Metro on a day escalators are functioning.

3. BEST COFFEE SHOP

Having worked my way through college as a barista, I am picky about my coffee shops. D.C.-area entrepreneurs have some opportunity here. We're short on funky coffee spots. I miss the former Sparky's on 14th Street for its laid-back neighborhood vibe. The Caribou in downtown Bethesda can't be beat for location and comfort. And great staff! Sangamore Starbucks also has some wonderfully friendly, remember your name type baristas. If you love your barista, don't forget to tip!

4. BEST PLACE FOR LIVE MUSIC

Silver Spring's new Fillmore is great. When I was younger I spent a lot of time at the Black Cat and the 9:30 Club. Now that I'm aging, I spend more time on the lawn at Wolf Trap. Sometimes I do the unthinkable for a born-and-raised Bethesda girl and cross over to Arlington to go to Iota. And I'm looking forward to Ani DiFranco at the 6th & I Historic Synagogue later this month.

5. BEST PLACE FOR OUT-OF-TOWN VISITORS

Spy museum. They always love it! We just recommended it to our new au pair, and she was captivated.

6. FAVORITE MUSEUM

Smithsonian American History. No question! I always learn something new when I'm there. And I love the changes they have made recently and the more inclusive way we tell our nation's story. When I was a kid women's history was pretty much only told through the first ladies' dresses. That exhibit was always my favorite, but I wanted more meaningful stories and artifacts from people I could identify with. I must not have been alone, because now we do a much better job of telling our nation's true history from many diverse perspectives.

7. MOST ROMANTIC SPOT

So many! I used to love to watch the planes land at Hains Point, but it's not the same without the Awakening statue. Any D.C. rooftop with a view, a walk through the cherry blossoms, the Georgetown waterfront, and really anywhere my husband and I can grab a few minutes alone away from the chaos of our daily lives. There are many great long-standing romantic restaurants in the Woodmont Triangle area of Bethesda, and Grapeseed is a fabulous wine bar. We also love Addie's in Rockville or Redwood in Bethesda for a romantic dinner.

8. FAVORITE WAY TO SPEND A LAZY SUNDAY

Start with a giant cup of coffee and a newspaper. Then curl up on the couch watching the Sunday morning political talk shows. Spend the afternoon with our kids somewhere outside where they can run and jump and play with someone else's dogs while we sit down and watch (we love dogs but don't need any more responsibility in our lives, so we dog-share with generous friends and neighbors). We'll eventually get a little movement in too, maybe along the beautiful Capital Crescent Trail. Hopefully over dinner with friends we'll solve the world's problems, or at least laugh about the people on TV who can't.

9. BEN'S CHILI BOWL, OLD EBBITT GRILL OR CAFE MILANO?

Ben's. Hands down.

10. BEST OUT-OF-TOWN RETREAT

We've got little kids, so we spend a lot of time at Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg. Yes, it's an indoor waterpark, with a great arcade. No, it's not romantic. But it's a short drive and the kids love it. Plus, it's in Williamsburg, so we can call it cultural. In Maryland, downtown Frederick is really beautiful and engaging for a day trip. And we just got back from a beautiful wedding weekend in Charlottesville.

11. BEST INSIDE-THE-BELTWAY RETREAT

Roxsan Day Spa (White Flint mall). They take great care of me when I only have an hour to escape the job, the kids, the house, the husband, the parents. ...

12. FAVORITE MONUMENT

This is a tough one. I love them all. If I had to pick I'd say the Lincoln Memorial. As an elected official with a grass-roots organizing background I find Lincoln's moral fortitude inspiring. When facing a really tough decision or an uphill battle, I often remember his words, "let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith, dare to do our duty."

13. PROUDEST PART OF LIVING IN THE D.C. REGION

Some of the smartest, hardest-working, and most visionary people from across the country (and the world) are drawn here to this town in order to make a difference.

14. EMBARRASSING PART OF LIVING IN D.C. REGION

We don't dress well. At all.

15. BEST BREAKFAST SPOT

Will always be Bethesda's Tastee Diner.



Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/local/people/2011/10/my-washington-bethesda-lawmaker-keeps-kids-active-spy-museum-capital-crescent-g#ixzz1ckiT7nCv

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