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December 16, 2008

This Saturday, DC will be the center of college football! The start of bowl season happens at RFK, at the first-ever EagleBank Bowl. Navy v. Wake Forest. Be there! Please see ad at right for details.


At some point, we'll reach our holiday party limit. But before we hit that wall, we spent part of last night with a group who hits walls for a living: the Associated General Contractors of Metropolitan Washington.


We joined 150 AGC holiday networkers celebrating at VisArts, next to the library in Rockville Town Center. AGC of DC president Nigel Parkinson, right, culled together carolers: from left, Tompkins Builders' James Tolbert, P & P Contractors' Don Owen, The Justin Co.'s Iggy Justin, and Grunley's Greg Druga. Instead of Christmas tunes, they sang praises of each other, in particular Iggy, who just started his drywall and interior finishing business this month. He tells us now is the "perfect time to start up." Nigel, a seasoned vet, found now was a good time to head south to Colombia for a wedding. He's just back and raves about the beautiful architecture and people.


Chapel Valley Landscape Company's Deonne Wollman, Sterns Lott, and Daniel Kauffman flank Clark's Phil Sheridan and Shea Delutis-Smith. When we learned Chapel Valley was the landscaper behind the Capitol Visitors Center, we tried to coax some secrets out of them to no avail. (Like is there a topiary "George Bush" bush somewhere?) They also handled a $1M project at the Salamander Resort and Spa in Middleburg. Daniel hops on a plane to Europe today to visit his daughter, an international affairs student at Johns Hopkins in Bologna.

Exotic Stones

We found Tompkins' Ken Terry and Andree Yaap admiring glass mosaics with the artist, Julie Philips. The VisArts center has all sorts of art including ceramics, hot and cold glass, woodworks, and jewelry, and offers classes and galleries for each. Ken is the project executive on the MLK Memorial and says they'll likely break ground just north of the FDR Memorial in a matter of weeks. He tells us they can begin even before project fundraisers hit their $120M target. Of course, you can put minds at ease by donating here. AGC set a good example last night by holding a raffle to raise funds for local career academies.


You know Cathy Jones of Equis, long a superstar broker for tech clients like Mantech, Celera, Lockheed, and Oracle. Serving as chair of last night's 28th annual Choral Arts Holiday Gala, to raise money for that exceptional singing group, she refused to take this economy lying down. After 10 months of meetings, she packed the Kennedy Center Terrace with 700 generous givers, including titans of real estate and tech who shelled out $6k to $25k per table. With her above: HFF's Dek Potts and First Potomac Realty Trust chief investment officer Nick Smith. (In the news-you-can-use category, if you ever play golf with Nick, Dek says Nick is "one of the few veteran real estate guys who can bust a drive more than 300 yards.")


McKissack & McKissack's Deryl McKissack with WMATA General Manager John Catoe, right, and Wachovia local president Sam Schreiber. Wells Fargo's a "great bank," he says, as he prepares for the acquisition (and new name) that, subject to a shareholder vote on the 23rd, happens January 1. Not surprisingly, Sam and his wife are sticking around for Christmas, and he says their time off will be spent around the house "probably cleaning closets."

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