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Ray's opening brings nearly every pol out

D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty was in full campaign mode Wednesday afternoon, passing out green stickers to potential volunteers and nibbling on a juicy porterhouse steak and at the soon-to-open Ray's: The Steaks at East River in Ward 7.

"When I am campaigning, I try to work as hard as humanly possible, knocking on doors, putting signs up. When I am administering, I am focused entirely on results," Fenty said after the ribbon cutting for the restaurant.

It's worth mentioning that the ribbon cutting occurred practically in the backyard of Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray, Fenty's rival in the September primary.

Gray was also on hand for the ceremony -- though Ray's owner Michael Landrum provided a full meal only to Fenty: mashed potatoes, greens, macaroni and cheese and of course, steak.

(The mayor took most of it home in a doggy bag.)

Gray, who dined on a mini-steak burger, sat with Dorothy Douglas, a longtime Ward 7 advisory neighborhood commissioner who is now on the State Board of Education.

"People know my style of leadership and being involved with people," Gray said. "I think the style of leadership that I have exhibited as Ward 7 representative and as council chairman is a style that will resonate with people."

Julius Ware, who promotes economic development in Ward 7, watch the mayor during the event. He noted that Fenty, who has been called aloof at times, seemed to show another side of himself.

"Mayor Fenty seems to work best when he has a challenger. Normally, he keeps his jacket on, but today he had his coat off and was eating macaroni and cheese."

Council member Yvette M. Alexander (D-Ward 7), who was instrumental in getting Ray's to Ward 7, and Kwame R. Brown (D-At Large), a Ward 7 resident who is running for council chairman, were also there to help cut the ribbon.

Landrum said his restaurant will provide more than fine dining to Ward 7. "We want to build a bridge from the past to the present and from the old to the new," he said.

Fenty gave Landrum a proclamation. "This is the first time that I got something official that wasn't a court order," Landrum joked.

The restaurant opens to the public Tuesday.

-- Hamil Harris

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By Washington Post editors  |  April 8, 2010; 9:24 AM ET
 | Tags: Adrian Fenty, Kwame R. Brown, Vincent C. Gray  
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Julius Ware is a fine individual, honest, bright, hard working, real, and is the kind of person we should be thinking of electing to the Council. Enough of the arrogant, bilious, stuffed suits like Calvin Robinson and Jeff Smith already!

Three Cheers for Rays!

Posted by: SoCali | April 8, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

You got to give it to Landrum. He may have some people-skill issues, but he is one of the few people in this area that aren't just talk.

Posted by: ghokee | April 8, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Oh no! The area is beginning to gentrify! Oh no!

Posted by: kenk3 | April 8, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Well, I assume this restaurant is SOMEWHERE in Ward 7. Too bad the article didn't consider giving the rest of the world a clue as to its address. I could care less what Fenty ate.

Posted by: PepperDr | April 8, 2010 10:26 PM | Report abuse

I agree with @PepperDr an address would have been nice. People that live in Ward 7 have enough money to dine out.

Posted by: fivetogo | April 9, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

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