Earlier today, Director of Athletics Lee Reed named Jamie Holder as Georgetown’s new head coach of the swimming and diving program. Holder previously worked as an assistant coach of the Princeton’s mens’ swimming team for the last five seasons.
“I’m excited to work with the student-athletes and hit the ground running,” Holder said.
While at Princeton, Holder took part in a string of successes. The Tigers went 7-0 last season, bringing home the Ivy League Championship for the fourth time in five seasons. According CollegeSwimming.com, the Princeton had the nation’s 25th-best mens’ swimming and diving team last season. Georgetown was unranked.
Perhaps most importantly, Holder brings significant recruiting expertise to Georgetown. As Princeton’s main recruiter, he scouted prospective swimmers and divers exceptionally well; CollegeSwimming.com ranked Princeton’s incoming class of recruits as one of the five best in the nation.
Georgetown’s swimming and diving team is on the up-and-up itself. While breaking nine school records last season, the womens’ team had a dual-meet record of 10-2, the best in the school history. The mens’ team also broke five school records.
Holder replaces former head coach Steven Cartwright, who stepped down last spring. Cartwright, who served as head coach for three years, plans to attend the St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia and study for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Raleigh, North Carolina.
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Georgetown’s favorite pizza place is trying to come back—again.
Philly Pizza & Grill, which D.C. Attorney General Peter Nickles once compared to a brothel, recently filed a demolition permit with the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) for its Potomac Street location. However, don’t start dreaming of late-night, ranch-drenched pizza just yet.
According to the recently-approved permit, the building is zoned as a “prepared food shop.” Philly Pizza originally closed because it violated zoning laws about prepared food shops; even if owner Mehmet Kocak reopens the eatery, it can’t be the late-night pizza peddler it once was.
The permit allows for “limited interior demolition” that focuses on equipment that would be needed to make food on the premises. The building’s “kitchen hood, ductwork and exhaust system” are all being removed.
Shortly after Philly Pizza was closed via court order in March, owner Matt Kocak filed papers with the DCRA for a new certificate of occupancy. While the DCRA has yet to approve the application, the renovations suggest that Kocak is angling to reopen his restaurant.
However, those who fought to close the restaurant, such as ANC Commissioner Bill Starrels, are disappointed with the new developments.
“I don’t think [Kocak] has earned any credibility,” Starrels said. “I hope that Peter Nickles will do everything in the law and his power to protect my constituents from having to suffer under these people again and from this place reopening.”
Even if Philly Pizza does reopen, neighbors shouldn’t expect large crowds of customers—the permit lists the proposed maximum occupancy at 18 persons.
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While battle over the Shops at Georgetown Park heats up, at least there’s some hope for some fun on the horizon.
The National Pinball Museum is coming to the Shops, according to the Georgetown Metropolitan. David Silverman, its founder and curator, hopes to open the museum in September.
“I am building it as we speak,” Silverman wrote in an email.
Silverman’s grand plan for the museum includes pinball-themed eateries, exhibits on the history of pinball, and workshops on the construction of pinball machines. However, because he plans to build another museum on yet-to-be purchased land, some of these features might not be coming to Georgetown.
The Pinball Museum currently contains 50 pinball machines and is housed in a building behind Silverman’s Silver Spring home. With the move to Georgetown, he says, the museum can exhibit more of his collection. Silverman owns over 850 pinball machines, including a pinball machine precursor from the 1920s.
The large collection should get plenty of use; the museum will not only have exhibits, but also pinball machines for visitors to play.
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Earlier this month, The West End Flyer reported that Whole Foods may be opening a location in Foggy Bottom. The report, which was based on an anonymous source, places the grocery store on the Square 54 development project across from George Washington University Hospital.
Boston Properties, the company developing the 2200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW property, said that site will include “an urban grocery store,” while Senior Project Manager Jake Stroman told the Flyer that negotiations between Boston Properties and a grocery company had reached “the final step.”
When Vox contacted Whole Foods to confirm the story, however, public relations representative Ivy Goldberg claimed, “At this time there is no plan for a new store opening in that location.”
Due to confidentiality agreements, it seems that all of the involved parties seem wary of confirming the news.
Although Stroman declined to identify the company, he did reveal that the lease will not be signed for at least two more weeks. Boston Properties expects to complete the Square 54 project in early 2011.
These rumors follow Mayor Adrian Fenty‘s rejection of a proposal that would have opened a Whole Foods within blocks of the 2200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW location. In March, the Washington Business Journal reported that Fenty had rejected a bid from Toll Brothers Inc. to develop the West End Library and Fire Station—a bid which included plans for a Whole Foods store, according to the Flyer.
To date, area residents’ requests for a local grocery store have largely been ignored. The Foggy Bottom Association, a neighborhood group, conducted a survey in 2009 to determine the retail needs of residents. 92 percent of respondents cited grocery as a service missing from the neighborhoods of Foggy Bottom and the West End, despite the presence of Trader Joe’s on 25h St. NW. Whole Foods was residents’ top choice to fill the void, followed by Giant Foods, Harris Teeter, and Safeway.
Photo from Flickr user “spiderpop” used under a Creative Commons license.
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