Don’t forget to vote for Best of D.C. Voting for our annual contest runs through March 1.

THE NEWS:

It has been a week for D.C. Just a day ago, a statehood bill was sent to the House floor for a historic vote. If the bill to make the District the 51st state passes, it’d be the first time any chamber of Congress passed statehood legislation. 

It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. As Washingtonians celebrated an unprecedented moment, a few Republican lawmakers took the opportunity to deride D.C. One such lawmaker reduced D.C. to a “government town with a little bit of tourism connected to the buildings.”

To cleanse yourself of any and all D.C. hate, I’d recommend reading the love letters to our city in this week’s cover story

“As we approach Valentine’s Day, I’m overwhelmed with a sense of love for my city. From childhood adventures on the banks of the Anacostia to paddle boat rides with family on the Potomac, my memories of D.C. carry far and wide,” writes City Paper’s Christina Sturdivant Sani for this week’s cover story, available in print or online. “And I know others’ do too.” 

The letters are written by a number of familiar names—from Virginia Ali, owner of Ben’s Chili Bowl, to Tori Huster, a Washington Spirit player. Give them a read, they are worth your time. —Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? Email agomez@washingtoncitypaper.com)  

CITY DESK LINKS, by Amanda Michelle Gomez:

  • Tenant attorney Will Merrifield wants to rout out developer influence at the Wilson Building. So he’s running for an at-large Council seat. [WCP]

  • Metro Transit Police held a month-long competition to encourage arrests and other enforcement before management shut it down. The winner got a $20 movie gift card. [Post]  

  • Calvin Bright maintained his innocence for 25 years. He’ll walk free after his defense team discovered new evidence. [WUSA9]

LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Mitch Ryals(tips? mryals@washingtoncitypaper.com

  • Jack Evans’ scandal looms over the D.C. Council as some lawmakers get testy. [WCP]

  • Brandon Todd met with private school kids but not with students from the school he voted to close. [WCP]

  • Mayor Muriel Bowser defended Mike Bloomberg’s comments about stop-and-frisk on CNN last night. [Twitter, Listen here]

  • Is more money the right answer for public schools? [DC Line]

YOUNG & HUNGRY LINKS, by Laura Hayes (tips? lhayes@washingtoncitypaper.com

  • Try the sweeter side of the region’s robust Salvadoran and Mexican cuisines at panaderías sprinkled across the area. [WCP]

  • Richard “Dickie” Shannon‘s daughter and granddaughter operate the Takoma location of Horace and Dickies that’s becoming famous for gumbo. [WCP]

  • The Imperial gets two and a half stars from Tom Sietsema. [Post]

  • Stories from chefs who go to great lengths to smuggle in ingredients from overseas. [Eater]

ARTS LINKS, by Kayla Randall (tips? krandall@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Here’s what the go-go community wants to see in a museum for the music. [WCP]

  • Liz At Large: “Skip” [WCP]

  • Could a women’s history museum be coming to the National Mall? [WAMU]

  • Washington Post art critic Philip Kennicott speaks on his new book, Counterpoint: A Memoir of Bach and Mourning. [Washingtonian]

SPORTS LINKS, by Kelyn Soong (tips? ksoong@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • DC Defenders players see the XFL as a second chance to make a living playing the sport they love. [WCP]

  • The DC Wave Swim Team will host the 34th annual Black History Invitational Swim Meet in D.C. this weekend, bringing together racially diverse teams in what is historically an extremely white sport. [WCP]

  • Darryll Pines, University of Maryland’s next president, may already be familiar to local soccer fans. His son, Donovan, has played for D.C. United and is currently on the roster for Loudoun United FC, D.C. United’s reserve team. [The Diamondback]

CITY LIGHTS, by Emma Sarappo (Love this section? Get the full To Do This Week newsletter here. Tips? esarappo@washingtoncitypaper.com)

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