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Republic Gardens
1355 U Street, NW
202-232-2710
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Every weekend, the well-dressed crowds step out of their limos and taxis to eat the best food and hear the latest sounds in African-American music at Republic Gardens (1355 U Street). This scene has been playing itself out at that location off and on for most of the twentieth century. On this block today, clubs like Republic Gardens and State of the Union pack in the kind of crowds that justify its claim as the hippest area of D.C. In the first Golden Age of U Street, this area was the home of venues like the original Republic Gardens (1343 U Street), sometimes confused with the stately Republic Theater which, before being demolished in 1976, was just east of the Gardens. Republic Gardens was named after a club in New York, and is said to have been the place that Pearl Bailey got her start. The club reflected the popularity of bebop, and consequentially, the quintessential bebop artist, Charlie Parker sometimes performed there.




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