We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

Success! You're on the list.

At the THEARC complex on Mississippi Avenue SE in Ward 8, Kojo Nnamdi, hosting one of his live WAMU-FM Kojo in Your Community programs on Wednesday night and posted online yesterday, began asking audience members about why they like living east of the river and other issues affecting their community.

Nnamdi: Thank you very much, sir. Let me ask this gentleman over here. Sir, what do you like about THEARC, and why are you here?

Audience Member (with a Connecticut accent): Well, I’m a father, and I’ve got my two daughters taking ballet. And they’re going to be involved with the Washington Ballet, so we come over here, I think, three or four nights a week. I feel like I’m a captive of the ballet as a father. I think I’ve spent half my life at the ballet here at THEARC. So we come over about four nights a week, and it’s a wonderful facility. It’s a great program, and we’re delighted to be a part of it.

Nnamdi: And, sir, would you please tell us your name.

Audience Member: Well, I’m a retiring United States senator. I’ve been in the Senate for 30 years from the state of Connecticut. I have a home on Capitol Hill, and I’ve come over to this side of the river many occasions. I sit on the board of regents to the Smithsonian. I love the Smithsonian Museum here in Anacostia. I’ve been to it many times and didn’t discover THEARC until the ballet program, but I’m glad that I did. So a pleasure to be over here.

Nnamdi: Ladies and gentlemen, Senator Christopher Dodd, retiring from the Senate after so many years.

After chatting with Dodd, other audience members discussed issues related to educational opportunities, bridging the digital divide and job creation. (Anyone want to start an over/under line on how many other members of Congress will make it east of the river in the next two years?)

THEARC will host a community open house on Saturday to celebrate its 5th anniversary.

Here’s the full transcript and listen to Kojo’s show here.

Photo courtesy office of Sen. Christopher Dodd