Republic Gardens = Gone
by Winston "Stone" Ford
Another one bites the dust…
Republic Gardens on U Street got evicted from their spot today and their stuff got thrown out on the street. I’m sure people are having a field day with all of the free DJ equipment and fixtures on the side of the street.
I never really hung out at Republic Gardens, so I really can’t shed too many tears. The few times I went there, I was really unimpressed, but apparently according to my cousin the place was the ish in the 90s.
From the Washington Post Blog:
The Gardens became a fixture on the D.C. scene in the late 1990s, when celebrities like Prince, Diddy, Magic Johnson and Halle Barry were spotted amongst the loyal crowd of stylishly dressed, upwardly mobile young professionals who gathered there every weekend. But the club has lost much of its luster since super-promoter Marc Barnes left to open Love in December 2001. Despite attempts by the current owners to keep some sort of buzz going, party promoters and weekly events have come and gone without leaving a lasting impression. They’ve tried everything from “international” theme parties that were meant to diversify the audience to bringing back the “open bar and lavish buffet” happy hours that were Barnes’s trademark event. Crowds always got thick at Howard Homecoming, but the Gardens’ late-’90s vibe has never been recaptured for any length of time.
Late last year, the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board suspended Republic Gardens’ license because of unpaid fees and late fines that totaled $9,100. Perhaps that was a sign of things to come.
Dayum. Looks like this place has seen better days. It does seem like upwardly mobile black people have lost yet another place to go to in the District though. More pictures here.