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Posted at 7:03 PM ET, 07/26/2010

No power, no problem

By Washington Post editors

Sunday’s violent thunderstorm left hundreds of thousands of people in the dark, but some Washington area residents and businesses were doing their best to lighten the situation.

In Chevy Chase, the Broad Branch Market was planning to hold a barbecue on the sidewalk Monday night. On the menu was grilled fish, sautéed shrimp, steaks, barbecued chicken and salads with heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers and white corn. Up to 100 people were expected to attend.

“It’s just that since we’ve been closed, we haven’t been selling [the food],” said John Fielding, who runs the market with Tracy Stannard and who lost power Sunday. “We gotta do something with it — we might as well feed everybody.”

The Avalon Theatre on Connecticut Avenue NW hoped to bait moviegoers with air-conditioned rooms showing “Inception” and other films, food and beverages, free wireless Internet and ice cream.

Instead of opening gifts at home, Claudia Hood-McCollum, 38, took her family to the Westfield Wheaton Shopping Mall to celebrate her son’s 14th birthday. Her Adelphi home had grown too warm, she said, and the mall seemed like a natural place to eat ice cream, cool off and charge cellphones.

It was an unusual way to turn 14, to say the least.

“We didn’t take the cake with us because we had to travel by bus,” she said.

--Stephanie Lee

By Washington Post editors  | July 26, 2010; 7:03 PM ET
Categories:  DC, Maryland, Virginia  
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