Monthly Archives: March 2011

Garden Party Pictures!

We had a blast at the Garden Party and hope you did too!

The music was good,

both two and four-legged Forklift Fans dressed up in awesome costumes,



the food was delicious,


the door prizes kept people smiling,



the crafting booth by SCRAP DC,  the free treats and dog food by The Big Bad Woof, and the free seeds and compost by The Neighborhood Farm Initiative were a hit,


and best of all, people got awesome deals on gardening and outdoor items!

Thanks so much for coming!!

From all of us at Community Forklift

(picture of the women of Community Forklift courtesy of Marc Poe)

Categories: Events | Leave a comment

All the details about Saturday’s Garden Party

This weekend, we’re having a big shindig at Community Forklift, the nonprofit thrift store for home improvement.  You (and your pet) are invited to show off your best garden party style.  Below are all the details about the food, the live music, the FREE seeds, and the Garden Attire Awards! 
Rain or shine, we’re celebrating spring – and the fact that the City Paper just named us DC’s Best Home Goods Store!  Click here for directions and a map to our store, or for more info contact Ruthie at 301-904-7579.

Photo by Malek Naz Freidouni, from the 2010 DC Seersucker Social


The Goodies!

  • Garden Items & Tools

  • 9 am – 6pm
    Gate opens at 9 am. We expect a lot of shoppers, so come early for the best selection.

    The Food!

  • Lemonade & Lunchtime Potluck

  • 12 pm – 3 pm
    Bring a dish, chow down, and get to know other Forklift Fans

  • “Grilling for the Building”

  • 12 pm – 3 pm
    We’re still trying to buy our warehouse, so we’ll be cooking hot dogs, burgers, & veggie burgers to raise money for our building fund.

    The Animals!

    Friendly, easy-going pets are encouraged to attend, as long as they’re on leashes. They are, however, discouraged from jumping on the potluck table or each other.

    Dress to Impress!

    We know that some of you love vintage clothes as much as you love vintage homes. This is the perfect occasion to show off your garden party attire. Take your inspiration from the trend-setters at DC’s 2010 Seersucker Social, below.

    Photo by Josh Yospyn

    Attire Awards for People & Pets

    12 pm – 1:30 pm
    Please arrive to register by noon if you (or a four-legged friend) would like to compete for the Garden Attire Awards. Categories will include jauntiest hat, frilliest flourishes, best vintage ensemble, most elegant, most debonair, poshest preppy, charming big animals, and adorable little animals.

    Don’t worry if your hands are too calloused, or if your animal friend has too much dirt on his paws. We’ll also be looking for the most authentic gardener, best garden digger, most creative use of repurposed materials, and demonstration of Community Forklift spirit.

    Prizes donated by:

  • Treasury: Located on 14th Street in NW DC, Treasury is a concept boutique melding an appreciation for the historical with the quest for modern beauty. Says owner Cathy Chung, “We consider our products to be artifacts of superior quality, to be reinterpreted and repurposed by the stylish and socially-conscious individual.”
  • Goodwill of Greater Washington: Transforming lives and communities through the power of education and employment. Thrift stores located throughout the DC area.
  • The Big Bad Woof: They provide essentials for the socially conscious pet. They have a store in the Takoma Park area, and will soon open a location at The Shoppes at Arts District Hyattsville.

    The Music!

  • Put Some Pep In Your Springtime Step

    Community Forklift’s resident DJ will be here! DJ One HeART Muzik, willl give away door prizes and take requests throughout the day.

  • Live Folk Music

  • 11 am
    Mary Gordon Hall began her songwriting career about 20 years ago writing songs for her first grade students. Her first recording of original and traditional songs (1991), I Just Can’t Eat My Peas, is enjoyed by families around the world. Her most recent recording (2006) of “grownup” original songs, Wine Glasses & Wooden Spoons, is her richest expression of both voice and songwriting to date

  • Live Mandolin Music

  • 1:30 pm
    Neil Gladd received his B.A. in Music from Virginia Tech, and has appeared as a mandolin soloist at Carnegie Recital Hall, Merkin Hall, the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian Institution, at mandolin festivals in Germany, Sweden, Belgium and Japan, as well as in recital in Canada, England and France. He has been recycling, restoring and repurposing music and musical techniques for decades. After buying his first home in Hyattsville in 2009, he became a Forklift Fan and started doing to same to his house.

    The Free Stuff!

  • “Make It – Take It” Crafting Area
  • 10 am – 2 pm
    Volunteers from SCRAP DC will provide materials and inspiration to help folks make any number of things. The School and Community Reuse Action Project is a new organization that works to inspire creative reuse and environmentally sustainable behavior by providing educational programs and affordable art materials to the community (Simply put, they aim to be a Community Forklift for artists and artistic endeavors).

  • FREE Seeds& Planting Advice
  • 2 pm – 5 pm
    Provided by the Neighborhood Farm Initiative. NFI is a non-profit project of America the Beautiful Fund. They aim to improve underutilized public green spaces in the DC area by creating demonstration gardens for hands-on community-wide education, thereby increasing access to fresh vegetables for all members of our community, regardless of income.

  • FREE Window Sashes

  • 9 am – ?
    During the party, we’re giving away select window sashes while supplies last (limit 4 per customer). You can use several for a space divider. Crafters like to repurpose them for picture frames, wall art, and jewelry organizers. Gardeners know they are great for building cold frames to start your seeds. Ella, one of our Forklift Fans, makes mini-greenhouses – she donated a beautiful one to our last silent auction!

  • Learn About Local Currency

  • Anacostia Hours provides the local currency in the Gateway Arts District that encourages buying locally and increases community economic self-reliance. Forklift Fans and others can join the local currency system, and receive Anacostia Hours (notes) that can be used to purchase goods and services from anyone in the Hours directory. For more information, stop by their information table during the party, or contact Nick Williams at 443-722-0528, or visit the Anacostia Hours website.

    Categories: Events, News | Leave a comment

    Local Author Seeks Creaky Old Houses

    Help a local author illustrate her novel! Share a unique view of your home – the more rotten and run-down, the better!

    Greetings, fellow Forklift Fans:

    I need several close-up views in old houses to create illustrations for my forthcoming novel Rainwood House Sings. The book is set in a run-down house in a fictionalized town which happens to resemble Brentwood, North Brentwood and Mt. Rainier, with a few hints of Edmonston, Hyattsville, etc. thrown in (see below for a brief synopsis of the story).
    If any of the descriptions below sounds familiar, please share it!
    Rainwood House is as decrepit as they come, so bring on the worst you have! If possible, send a snapshot along with your contact info to solidaritynow(at)
    If it fits, I’ll come photograph it and “Photoshop” it for the book. You’ll get a warm mention in the Acknowledgments – but not beside the transformed photo, so no one will know it was your house…unless you want!
    Thanks very much!!
    Juliana (Julie) Barnet
    Mt. Rainier 
    House: Large, decrepit, vaguely Queen Anne style. Dormers and roof sections going different directions. Dilapidated wrap-around porch. Teetery-looking looking tower with “witch hat” roof.
    Front Porch: wide, rotten stairs leading up to an empty porch with one broken wicker chair, peeling paint on columns, old-fashioned decrepit front door with diamond pane sidelights. 
    Foyer: wide, broken floorboards, a coat tree, old table, doorway with old trim.
    Upstairs: wide, old stairway up to second floor landing. At least two doors opening onto a landing, visible from top of stairs.
    Kitchen: window with wide, rotten sash and sill, above old-fashioned rounded sink with old faucet. Herb in pot on sill.
    Garden: several dead, droopy-headed sunflowers on the stalk, standing in a disheveled area of tall grass (actually an old crop of unharvested wheat.)
    Basement: Rickety basement stairway with no risers, old beams, tangle of pipes, old door in a damp-stained wall.
    Rainwood House Sings is a “social justice mystery,” a lighthearted but serious novel about a Mexican ex-union activist and her quirky young granddaughter, who live in a near-ruinous old house with a forgotten Civil Rights history.
    They take in a housemate who, unbeknownst to them, is fleeing a possible accusation of cop shooting.
    Serenaded by Rainwood House’s bellowing plumbing and squeaking stairways, the human inhabitants gradually reveal their secrets, helping each other tackle sexual harassment at work, religious confusion in school, and the challenges of being on a modern-day underground railroad.

    Eventually Rainwood House’s inhabitants must reach out beyond themselves to confront a threat looming over all of them and over Rainwood House itself.

    Categories: Community Happenings | Leave a comment

    Spring Celebration!

    Check out our press release for the nitty-gritty on our Spring Celebration happening this weekend!

    2011 – 3 – 18 Community Forklift’s Spring Celebration press release

    Categories: Events | Leave a comment

    Vote for us!

    It’s that time of the year again!   Washington CityPaper is doing their Best of DC nomination polls and we need your help to make sure Community Forklift enters the final ballot so we can hopefully win for the second year in a row!  Vote Here to help your favorite home improvement store get this great honor and some free publicity!

    Categories: General | Leave a comment

    Pick Up America

    Plastic bottles, chip bags, grocery bags, take-out containers, soda cans, soda can rings, hypodermic needles, gum, Styrofoam, balloons, twine, and straws…these are just a few of the things littered all over the country.  Pick Up America is a local, regional, and nationwide initiative dedicated to reducing waste in our communities and waterways.  This group of full-time volunteers is walking across America and picking up trash along the way.  They also organize community pick-ups to help change our throwaway mentality, and to encourage communities to embrace alternatives.

    In 2010, the Pick Up Artists cleaned up 73,224 pounds of trash in Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia, West Virginia, and Kentucky before stopping for the winter to regroup and fundraise.  Come on out to their “March Forth” fundraiser!  It will be held at the Washington Ethical Society from 7 – 10 PM on March 4th.  There’ll be rock, blues, & russian folk music, and food from the Fojol Brothers (a.k.a. DC’s traveling culinary carnival).  It’s gonna be a great time!  Come support this worthy cause – this flyer has the details: March Forth Fundraiser

    P.S. – Community Forklift has donated materials to fix up the bus where they’ll sleep (it’s really cool – it runs on waste vegetable oil!).  However, they’re still looking for bunkbeds, so contact if you have some to spare.

    For more information on Pick Up America and their other initiatives, check out these links….which we have also added to our Green Links Page.

    Pick Up America’s Blog

    PUA Founder Davey Rogner’s Harvest Collective Blog

    “Litter Bugs”, a Taipei Times Story about Pick Up America

    Categories: Community Happenings, Events | Leave a comment

    March Sales are here!

    It’s a beautiful, sunny 57 degrees!  Come and be the first to take advantage of our March sales before the rainy weekend comes!

    This month, get:

    – granite scraps for 10 cents each… yes, only 10 cents!!  They make great edgers for your garden beds or walkways or can be used for coasters or cheese platters!  This Garden Web forum thread has great ideas! 

    – 30% off ALL salvaged doors that are $34 or less!  This includes modern, vintage, solid, hollow, louvered, and bifold doors.  There are many creative ways to use doors other than their traditional use (psst…some great ideas here at Apartment Therapy).  We have plenty of old doors for $5 (only $3.50 this month) that could be used for any of these projects.

    – 30% off ALL tubs, modern, vintage, and jetted!  That pink tub might not look so great in your bathroom but it would make an unique compost or garden bed in your backyard.  Check out  Using Tubs to Compost or Vintage Bathtub Makes a Pretty Planter for tips to get started.

    – pallets for only $1.  If you have a wet basement, they are great for elevating your stuff.  Also, if you don’t want a bathtub in your backyard, pallets are great for building compost bins.  This blog gives step by step instructions on how to build one (and might be of interest to you gardeners).  You could probably find all the other parts you needed here at Community Forklift!

    – 30% off bathroom and kitchen sinks!  We have a bunch of them, including some pretty awesome vintage ones like these two.

    By the way, we are having our Spring Sale & Celebration on March 26th.  Be sure to save the date!  We will have garden items for sale (perfect for working on your new bathtub or pallet compost bin or garden bed), door prizes, DIY workshops, food, and music!  What a great way to welcome spring!  If you have time to spare, we could definitely use your help with decorations, food, or the festivities.  Contact us at or give us a call at (301) 985-5180.  See you there!

    Categories: Monthly Sales | Leave a comment

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