Click for HG Hospitality Group Facebook pageClick for HG Hospitality Group Twitter pageClick for HG Hospitality Group RSS feed
HG Hospitality Group

| Print Page | Send to a Friend Home > Blog


Thursday, May 12, 2011


Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Thursday, May 12, 2011 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

Mayor Vincent Gray Provides Keynote Address at Awards Luncheon


Washington, DC, May 12, 2011—For the past 94 years, members of the Kiwanis Club of Washington, D.C. have worked to bring smiles to the faces of youth throughout the community. That tradition continues with our 14th Annual Joe Riley Awards. At the Awards luncheon at the National Press Club on Thursday, May 12, the Club awarded more than $39,000 in cash awards, college scholarships and new laptop computers to 30 DC Public High School seniors.

The Honorable Vincent C. Gray, Mayor of the District of Columbia provided inspiration and accolades to the college-bound students. Mayor Gray commended the Kiwanis Club for honoring Joe Riley with this annual award program, saying, “Joe Riley was known to many residents of the District of Columbia, including myself. It is fitting that in his honor the Kiwanis Club awards scholarships to young people.” The Mayor challenged the students to remain in the District of Columbia and remarked how rewarding it was to see Dunbar's nominee, Tyron Thomas, wearing a letterman jacket similar to the one he wore as captain of the high school's baseball team. The Mayor added that “success is not determined by where you go to school, but the effort you put in,” recalling his own K-12 education in the District of Columbia Public Schools.

Eighteen student nominees were honored as the winner from their school. Each received a new laptop computer, including software and accessories. The school winners were: Rashida Wise, Anacostia High School; Leah Edwards, Archbishop John Carroll High School; Sache Collier, Ballou Senior High School; Kadeem Swenson, Ballou STAY Senior High School; Kenrry Alvarado, Columbia Heights Educational Campus; LaTasha Mosley, Benjamin Banneker Senior High School; Daniel West, Calvin Coolidge Senior High School; Yatana Araya, Cardozo Senior High School; Asia Goode, Duke Ellington School of the Arts; Tyron Thomas, Dunbar High School; Dominique Leach, Eastern Senior High School; Montee Wills, Luke C. Moore Academy; Marcus Lee, McKinley Technology High School; Malcolm Berry, Roosevelt High School; Zachary Meyer Jersky, School Without Walls; Mioni Wingo-King, Spingarn Senior High School; Cheyenne Garrett, Spingarn STAY Senior High School; Alec Paz, Woodrow Wilson Senior High School.

Download a hi-res photo of the winners with Mayor Gray here.

After presenting the laptops and highlighting the many accomplishments of all of the finalists, scholarships were presented to the three winners, as determined by the Joe Riley Awards judging panel. Third place and the winner of a $5,000 scholarship was Marcus Lee, McKinley Technical High School. Second place and a $7,500 scholarship was presented to Sache Collier from Ballou Senior High School. The first place award and a $10,000 scholarship was awarded to Daniel West of Calvin Coolidge Senior High School.

The Kiwanis Club would like to thank the 2011 judging panel for their time and dedication to this year’s program: Committee Chairman Dick Juergens, Kiwanis Club of Washington, D.C. board member; Khari Brown, Executive Director, Capital Partners for Education; Vernon Holleman, III, Immediate Past President of the Kiwanis Club of Washington, D.C.; Richard Snowdon, prominent local attorney and the current Treasurer/Secretary of the Hill-Snowdon Foundation; and Michelle Riley Levenson, Vice President with the Bank of Georgetown and the daughter of Joe Riley.

Since the inception of the Joe Riley scholarship program 14 years ago, the Kiwanis Club of Washington, D.C. has given away over $250,000 in scholarships and more than 250 laptop computers. Throughout the school year, Kiwanis school partners work with District high school officials to select the most deserving students from across the entire DC public high school population for this special recognition.

The Kiwanis Club of Washington, D.C., is part of Kiwanis International, which boasts more than 8,400 Kiwanis clubs with nearly 280,000 members in 96 nations and geographic areas. In one year, Kiwanis clubs sponsored 147,000 service projects. To do so, Kiwanians raised and spent nearly $100 million and contributed 6.2 million hours of volunteer time. The Kiwanis Club of Washington, D.C. meets at The University Club on the first and third Thursdays of each month and members participate in volunteer projects throughout the year. For more information or to inquire about membership please visit our website at

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Food 4 Trees Program

Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Wednesday, November 10, 2010 at 8:10:43 pm Comments (0)

HG Hospitality is thrilled to be a sponsor and partner in "Food 4 Trees," a holiday program designed to save you money and help families in need this holiday season.

How It Works

Order a "Food 4 Trees" Frasier Fir Christmas tree and pledge to donate $30 worth of non-perishable food for local families in need. The trees are sourced from a farm in North Carolina and cut fresh just days before delivery just for us, and are available for much less than the cost of a tree on a lot (example: a 7'-8' tree is only $33.50 + $30 food donation). That's it! You'll pay much less than the cost of a tree on a tree lot, your family gets a beautiful fresh cut Christmas tree, and best of all, your food donation helps families in need this holiday season.

Trees will be available for pick-up at the Old Firehouse Teen Center at 1440 Chain Bridge Road in McLean the first weekend in December:

Friday, December 3, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Saturday, December 4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m
Sunday, December 5, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

"Food 4 Trees" was founded in 2009 by AV Remodeling in McLean, Virginia, with 20 families donating more than seven hundred pounds of food, all benefiting local food assistances programs. This year, the goal is to raise more than seven THOUSAND pounds of food and have more than 100 families participate.

Order Your Tree Today!

Ready to place your order, or want to learn more? Visit the Food 4 Trees website at or email Gretchen at

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Celebrate the Premiere of Top Chef: Just Desserts at Hook!

Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Thursday, September 9, 2010 at 1:42:40 pm Comments (1)

We're helping Hook and Tackle Box celebrate Pastry Chef Heather Chittum and the premiere of Top Chef: Just Desserts! Sample "Best of" Chef Heather's Desserts and watch the premiere!

RSVP to! Space is limited!

Hook Restaurant Website                  Tackle Box Website

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Petworth Farmers Market Opens Friday June 25!

Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Wednesday, June 23, 2010 at 6:31:59 pm Comments (1)

Exciting news for the Petworth Neighborhood in Northwest--you're getting a Farmers Market!

The Opening season begins Friday, June 25, 2010. The market will run every Friday 3:00‐7:00pm through October 29, 2010. The market will be located on the 4100 block of 9th Street NW at the highly visible intersection of Georgia Avenue and Upshur Street. More details were just announced this morning for today's opening:

The Petworth Community Market is proud to announce the line‐up for the 2010 market season. Neighbors, partners, elected officials and Petworth Community Market board members, artists, vendors, and volunteers will gather at the market site on 9th Street between Upshur and Georgia Friday, June 25 at 2:45 p.m. with a free and open to the public “ceremonial opening activity,” sure to become a Petworth Market tradition.

Over 12 vendors and business have signed up for the inaugural 2010 market season with more expressing interest on a daily basis. Participating vendors for this season include Atwater’s Bakery, G Flores Produce, Orchards Estates, Great Harvest Bread Company, Praline Bakery, Teaco, Dangerously Delicious Pies, Kilmer's Farm, Barajas Produce, C&T Produce, Qualia Coffee, and Corehaus. Local professional DJ, “The Unknown,” will provide musical entertainment, the Bikehouse a bicycle repair clinic, and artist area artust Jazirock will conduct graffiti art demonstrations. The market will be open every Friday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. through late October.



For more information:

Download the flyer

Read more in the press release

Visit the market's Web site

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sala Thai Petworth Opens!

Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Monday, June 21, 2010 at 2:48:10 pm Comments (0)


HG Hospitality was delighted to assist restaurateur and neighborhood visionary Oy Changsila, owner of Sala Thai locations on U Street and Bethesda, MD, open a new location in the up-and-coming Petworth neighborhood on Georgia Avenue NW. The response from the neighborhood for the Grand Opening Party on Tuesday, June 15 was overwhelming!

See photos from the Grand Opening:

Sala Thai Photo Album

More information about Sala Thai:

Fact Sheet

Press Release



Wednesday, March 24, 2010

NYC Dinearound

Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Wednesday, March 24, 2010 at 4:20:00 pm Comments (0)

Hillary and I spent this past weekend in New York City, checking out some of the places off the beaten path. I was tweeting along the way (Follow us! The weather was beautiful for early spring and the food we sampled was even more amazing. It's a good thing we walked everywhere! An overview of some of our finds and observations:

Comfort Food is Thriving: Judging from the crowd and wait at cafeteria, people are still craving comfort. The macaroni and cheese egg rolls (elbow macaroni rolled and fried in won ton wrappers, served with a smoked gouda dipping sauce). Fried chicken. Burgers. Fish and chips. Fresh fruit cocktails. Cafeteria is open 24/7 so you can get your comfort food fix any time, day or night. (

Support Your Local Restaurants: Many independent restaurants that are thriving are doing so by the support of their community. We stumbled upon Cask in Murray Hill, checked out the menu and made a point to return the following night. The server was surprised to hear we were from Washington, because, she said, most of their customers come from a two block(!) radius around the restaurant. (

Simple is Good: Simple food with high quality ingredients is good. Simple, comfortable design is warm and welcoming. At 'inoteca ( on the lower east side, the food is simple and delicious. Small plates allowed us to try and share several different items, like the truffled egg toast with bottarga (yum!) And speaking of small plates...

Small Plates are Wonderful: It allowed us to taste multiple dishes without being too full. Traditionally reserved for spanish tapas restaurants, this trend is making its way into other cuisines and we couldn't be happier about it!

Don't Take Yourself Too Seriously: A brand can be reinforced with humor. At Rice to Riches, which sells a variety of flavored rice puddings with toppings (see item #1: comfort food), has signs throughout the store embracing their dessert culture.  ( One criticism--the humor infused in the store isn't carried over to their Website.

We can't wait to go back and "dinearound" New York again. Where are your favorites in New York? What's your favorite comfort food in Washington? Share your thoughts.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Getting HG Hospitality Started

Posted by: Gretchen Schroeder on Monday, March 15, 2010 at 2:07:32 am Comments (0)

It's 2010 and we're just barely coming out of a recession. What could have possessed two otherwise sane friends and colleagues to start their own marketing and events business?

What BETTER time to start a business? Small business is the engine that drives the American economy. According to the Small Business Administration, small businesses generated 64 percent of net new jobs over the past 15 years. We see opportunity in the market in the Washington, DC, area and decided to go for it!

They say that if you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life. We believe that. Marketing and events are our passion, what we love and where we are the happiest. So why NOT us? Why not take a leap and go into business for ourselves?

What have we learned in the past few weeks as we're getting this venture off the ground? Learn from experts. We've spent the past few weeks reaching out to people we know who can help, advise and guide us: lawyers, people who have run event and PR companies, website developers, and potential clients, to whom we are immeasurably grateful. When you start looking at your network, it's truly amazing the resources that you have.

An entrepreneurial spirit is important too. We discovered ours when, a few years, ago, Hillary and I met on the team that opened a new restaurant in Washington. I was the marketing director, she was the events director. Together we made a great team, selling and promoting four private event spaces in the restaurant. We think (we hope?!) starting this business will be easier when you are in it with someone who complements your strengths and weaknesses.

Over the next few months, we'll document our progress in this blog, the ups and downs for a start up. Coming up for us this week? Legal incorporation and registration. Fun stuff!

Suggestions for us as we get started? We look forward to your comments!

Click for HG Hospitality Group Marketing Page
Click for HG Hospitality Group Event Planning Page
Click for HG Hospitality Group Public Relations Page