About the Cabin John Citizens Association

What is the Cabin John Citizens Association (CJCA)?

The Cabin John Citizens Association is your community association, serving to preserve Cabin John’s long-standing history as a strong and vibrant community that cares about its neighbors and believes all residents should have a say in matters important to the community. The association also promotes the neighborhood’s unique esprit de corps and beautiful natural surroundings. In 2019, the CJCA celebrated 100 years of service to Cabin John.  

How does the CJCA fulfill its mission?

The CJCA is structured to provide activities, advocacy, communications and community service and outreach.

Activities: From the Egg Hunt in the spring, the 4th of July parade and annual Potomac River canoe trip in the summer to the CJ Turkey Trot at Thanksgiving and the holiday party in December, the CJCA sponsors a host of activities aimed at bringing the community together and having a good time.

The association’s premier event is the CJ Chicken and Crab Feast held each September on the second Saturday after Labor Day. Some 75 residents work to put on this four-hour food fest that not only features delicious homemade food, but live music and activities for the kids. It is also a critical fundraiser for the CJCA.

Advocacy: The association spearheads community improvement projects, such as reducing cut-through traffic and making MacArthur Blvd. safer for pedestrians and bicyclists. In 2019, the CJCA started an important new initiative to preserve the Moses Hall & Cemetery property off of Seven Locks Rd. The property, historically significant for the role it played in Cabin John’s African American community in the segregated post-slavery era, is threatened by the state’s Beltway expansion plans. 

The CJCA also works with other community groups and organizations on airplane noise, safer roads near Walt Whitman High School and repairs to the C&O Canal. Additionally, the CJCA provides a forum for discussion of problems affecting Cabin John and represents our interests in dealing with county, state and federal government agencies, as well as with private developers and other businesses.  

Communications: The CJCA holds community meetings on the last Wednesday of the month (except December, June, July, and August) at 7:30 pm at the Clara Barton community center, 7425 MacArthur Blvd. Recent meetings offered local preservationists and county officials discussing how to protect the historic African-American Moses Hall & Cemetery property,  a presentation on the county’s bicycle and pedestrian master plans and conversations with CJ authors.  

The CJCA mails a monthly newsletter, The Village News, free to every residence and business in Cabin John. Thanks to dedicated Cabin Johners, the all-volunteer publication celebrated 50 years of continuous publication in 2017.  The CJCA also has a website, www.cabinjohn.org, that provides additional information and photographs of interest to the community along with the complete archive of The Village News.

To get the timeliest news about Cabin John, sign-up for the CJCA listserv, by sending a request to: cjca-official-news+subscribe@googlegroups.com This is the “official” email list for the citizens association, providing updates on community events and county activities that could impact Cabin John. The aim is to inform without overwhelming your In Box. It does not allow members to email each other.  Cabin John also has a neighborhood Listserv that residents use to share information, ask questions, report missing pets, etc. If you would like to join that forum, please go to: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/CabinJohn  or email: cabinjohn-subscribe@yahoogroups.comLearn more about these and other community listservs.

In addition, every five years, the association publishes the Cabin John Directory. The directory includes names, phone numbers and addresses of all CJ households, as well as business and services listings, a reverse look-up feature and community information and county resources. It is provided free to every home.

Community Service and Outreach: Cabin John has a long tradition of supporting its neighbors, the environment and the greater D.C. community. For more than 15 years, the CJCA has sponsored three community blood drives a year. Annual creek cleanups are held in conjunction with the Friends of the Cabin John Creek. For close to 10 years, residents have given generously to support D.C. residents through the annual Giving Tree project.

Closer to home, the CJCA has a Neighbor 2 Neighbor (N2N) program to provide needed assistance to CJ residents. N2N was started with the mission of helping Cabin John residents age in place, to be able to stay in their own homes with a little help. But sometimes folks of any age need temporary help at a rough stretch. N2N has a long list of willing volunteers to help with everything from transportation to medical appointments, grocery shopping and gardening to snow shoveling, simple household repairs, bill paying and tax preparation. The N2N volunteer coordinator is Judith Bell. She can be reached at 301-704-2421.

In 2017, the CJCA initiated a Block Coordinator program to help ensure that the CJCA is actively welcoming new neighbors, encouraging smaller neighborhood gatherings, selling crab feast tickets and helping with the CJCA’s N2N assistance initiative.

How can I support the CJCA?

Please pay your annual dues. The CJCA asks every household to pay $20 in annual dues. Your dues, donations from residents and the monies raised through the CJ Chicken and Crab Feast are the funds by which the CJCA provides all of its activities and services.

Please consider volunteering. The CJCA is an all-volunteer organization. Whether you chose to volunteer for an hour or two to help make the Crab Feast a success or you spearhead a whole new activity that brings the community together, your willingness to give your time is key to keeping Cabin John the uniquely wonderful and quirky community we know and love today.

The CJCA is always looking for help in all aspects of its work. It also welcomes feedback on its current efforts and ideas for activities and projects it should consider undertaking in the future.

Please reach out to any of the CJCA officers and communications volunteers with any concerns, comments, questions, and, of course, if you are interested in lending a hand.  In the meantime, welcome to the neighborhood. We hope Cabin John comes to mean as much to you as it does to all of us.

CJCA President: Susan Shipp, jsjshipp3@verizon.net

Treasurer: Bob Walsh, rjwalshjr@gmail.com

Secretary: Meredith Griggs, mmgriggs@gmail.com

Vice President for Activities: Irena Bojanova, ibojanova@gmail.com

Vice Presidents for Advocacy: Greg Pawlson, gpawlson@gmail.com and Charlotte Toup-Leighton, troupleighton@gmail.com

Vice President for Communications: Marcy Harrison, marcyharrison@earthlink.net

Vice Presidents for Community Service and Outreach: Stephanie Lai, laifamily2002@gmail.com, and Nancy Russell, nc3russell@yahoo.com

CabinJohn.org Editor: Robin Sidel, rsidel@gmail.com

Village News Editors: Loretta Devery Ingalls, loretta.devery@gmail.com, and Noelle Tower, knoelletower@gmail.com

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